Rise in mass protest against Obama October visit

Communist Party of the Philippines
September 19, 2013

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) calls on the Filipino people and their patriotic and democratic forces to stand firmly and rise up in mass protest against the visit of US imperialist chieftain Barrack Obama on October 11-12 and the planned signing of the framework agreement to allow the US military to more thoroughly use the Philippines as a military base.

The CPP calls on the Filipino people to raise their voices in protest over the all-out subservience of the Aquino regime to the US government in providing the US military unrestricted access to Philippine facilities. The CPP urges the Filipino people to protest the rapid degradation of Philippine sovereignty under the Aquino regime. The Aquino regime has exhibited utter obsequiousness to the foreign policy dictates of the US government in support of the US' strategic aim of "pivoting" towards Asia.

Since declaring this shift towards the end of 2011, the US has been forging more and more arrangements with the Aquino regime as well as with the governments of Japan, Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia, India and others to allow US warships to routinely dock in their countries and have access to air and seaport facilities.

Over the past several years, the US government has succeeded in forging critical military access and basing agreements with Australia and Singapore, and is in the process of building similar agreements with other countries including the Philippines. In northern Australia, the US maintains a large military base that is set to host 3,000 American troops over the next few years from the current 600. Since 2005, the US has actively maintained facilities in Singapore for coordinating logistics and the deployment of warships in East Asia, Central Asia and as far as Africa.

The US has been continually upgrading its military cooperation with Japan, further strengthening its military bases in Okinawa and elsewhere. It has allowed and goaded Japan to build up its military hardware and infrastructure in order to provide logistical and military support to the US. Under US guidance, Japan has recently unveiled its first-ever aircraft carrier built after the second world war, believed to have been designed to help service US jet fighters.

It is within the framework of the US "pivot to Asia" that the Aquino regime has been closely working with the US government and military, allowing US warships unprecedented access to Philippine facilities. The Aquino regime has provided the US military unhampered use of Philippine airspace and territorial waters to fly drones and sail warships for power projection, surveillance, patrol and combat operations. It has allowed the US to build radar stations along the Philippine coastline. It continues to allow the US Pacific Command to maintain a base with 700 American troops in facilities within Zamboanga City and elsewhere.

Acting on the US' instructions, the Aquino regime has fomented conflict with China over the Spratly islands and other formations in the South China Sea. It has allowed the US to militarize the conflict by deploying its warships in the area, provoking China to make more aggressive assertions of its own claims. By heightening US military presence in the South China Sea trading route, the US seeks to pressure China into complying with US demands to allow more liberal policies with regard to US investments and dumping of US surplus goods.

The scheduled visit of US President Barrack Obama is set to firm up and cement the new set of guidelines between the US government and military and its client Philippine state. Officials of the US and Aquino governments are rushing to come up with the final copy of the new agreement that will practically restore the US bases in the Philippines.

Exclusive US access to Philippine facilities was already agreed upon by the US and Philippine governments as far back as January 2012 during the Strategic Defense Dialogue in Washington. The US and Aquino governments are busy forging the written agreement in order to have this operational for the next twenty or thirty years. The written agreement is being carefully crafted to make it look not like a military bases treaty. The US is stretching its definitions to make it appear that it does not want military bases. The US will try to make it appear that the facilities to be built and used by the US military will be under the ownership of the Philippine government.

The Obama visit will mark a new stage in US neocolonial rule in the Philippines. The praises to be heaped by the US overlord on the Philippines as "friend" and "partner" will, however, fail to conceal the historic and continuing fact that the Philippines has been a victim of American colonial conquest since the turn of the twentieth century and a continuing victim of US hegemonism for over more than half a century.

Let the Obama visit in October underscore the fact that the Philippines is a semicolony of the US economically, politically, culturally and militarily. With the visit of his master, let us expose and stand firmly against Benigno Aquino III's subservience to the US. Let us fan the flames of Filipino patriotism and unite the broadest possible number of people to oppose the grant of greater access to the US military and the entry of an increasing number of US troops.