Press Release
December 18, 2016


I hope that the President is thinking clearly and level-headedly when he threatens to make drastic changes to our foreign relations and national defense policies. I hope that he understands the difference between the Philippines pursuing an independent foreign policy, and the Philippines being forced to reformulate its foreign policy in order to serve the President's ego and accommodate his need to throw a tantrum whenever he doesn't get his way. The first serves the nation's interest. The latter does not. Whether the VFA should be canceled is a matter that should be decided with cool heads. More importantly, it should not be decided precipitously or carelessly without any clear alternatives, precisely because of what the President calls "the changing politics" in the West Philippine Sea. He might be throwing us out of the pan and into the fire. There is so much at stake here - the Filipino people's lives, well-being, security and even our very sovereignty. I hope he doesn't sacrifice those interests as easily as he sacrifices the lives of the people who are being killed on a daily basis because of his so-called "War on Drugs". He should really stop turning foreign relations and diplomacy into a grudge match, where the Filipino's welfare is just a pawn for him to sacrifice. He accuses the US of treating the Philippines like a doormat. If imploring our government to respect the rule of law and uphold the human rights and civil liberties of its people is treating the Philippines like a doormat - I would welcome that over our own so-called leaders treating us like bugs to be crushed. I would also welcome it over chasing after an alliance with a country that has made profits over flooding our streets with their illegal drugs.

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