Patriotic student group League of Filipino Students (LFS) protests in the strongest possible terms yesterday’s Supreme Court (SC) decision to uphold the constitutionality of the “de facto basing agreement” Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA). The high court, in a vote of 10-4, has sealed off the Aquino government’s wholesale surrender and express delivery of Philippine national sovereignty and territorial integrity to the United States.
We disagree with the SC’s position that EDCA is a mere executive agreement between the governments of the Philippines and the United States on that grounds that it is “simply an implementation of a previous treaty” such as the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT). Nowhere in the VFA and MDT does it allow the establishment of US military bases in “agreed locations” for the stationing of military troops, weapons and war materiel. EDCA practically is an American return to strategic bases in the country like the Subic Naval Base, Clark Air Base, Oyster and Ulugan Bays in Palawan and other bases in Zambales and Nueva Ecijia.
We also condemn the Aquino government for capitalizing on the territorial and maritime dispute in the West Philippine Sea against China as pretext for the signing of EDCA, ergo the return of US military bases in the country and American reoccupation of the Philippines. The US and China, both members of the global capitalist club, are in constant contention and collusion. But a recent Washington Post article has revealed that US President Barack Obama “intends to renew a nuclear cooperation agreement with China” and it is no new knowledge that the two military giants are doing joint military exercises in the Pacific Rim. The Aquino government makes a big fool out of itself for believing that its US master will come to the rescue in case of an attack by China. Mr. Noynoy Aquino should retake a history class on World War II, which we are sure will remind him that his US ally was the first to leave the country upon defeat and occupation by Japanese fascist forces.
We also firmly believe that the Aquino government has used EDCA as a bargaining chip for US aid to the tune of up to USD 300 million, which he and his ruling clique eye for bureaucratic corruption and boost for its 2016 election war chest, among many other favors from his US master.
For sure, both the US and Philippine governments have celebrated and toasted over SC’s decision upholding the constitutionality of EDCA. But patriotic youth and students all over the country and the entire Filipino nation as well are fuming with rage over the Aquino government’s outright puppetry and servility to the US, making a travesty of our national sovereignty and territorial integrity.
LFS is fortunate to have joined the Filipino people’s historic mammoth protests in 1991 which booted US military bases and permanent troops out of the country. The puppet Philippine government may have wantonly surrendered our national sovereignty and territorial integrity to the US but the Filipino youth and people are willing to take up and continue the cause of fighting for genuine national freedom as our national heroes and forebears did. In the coming days and months, we vow bigger youth and student protests against EDCA, VFA, MDT and other unequal treaties between the Philippines and US. We will not bow down to the return of US bases in the country and its reoccupation of the Philippines ###