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17 April 2012
TITLE! SUMMARYIWRITER 1 Weather Forecast A.FP RELATED ISSUES Students activists protesting Balikatan deface US embassy seal MANILA, Philippines - Student activists defaced the seal of the United States embassy along Roxas Boulevard in Manila to protest the Philippines-US Balikatan military exercises that started yesterday. At least 100 members of the leftist league of Filipino Students (LFS) surprised Manila policemen and US embassy security guards. The students slipped through security to stage a lightning rally near the main gate of the embassy at around 6 a.rn., then sprayed red and blue paint on the embassy seal. (Sandy Araneta) Balikatan bad for ecology The intensified military exercises in the West Philippine Sea are threatening to disrupt the ecological system and harm the endangered species, scientists and environmentalists warned Monday. Dr. Perry Alino, a marine scientist at the University of the Philippines and Conservation International, said the construction of military installations in the disputed Spratly islands in the area the rest of the world calls the South China Sea has degraded some of the islands and affected the population of marine wildlife. (Kristine Alave) AFP: Balikatan to boost Malampaya security The Armed Forces of the Philippines seeks to boost its capability to secure the Malampaya natural gas platform and oil exploration projects off Palawan province from terrorist attacks by training with American troops in their bilateral military exercises. The latest large-scale joint military exercises between the Philippines and the United States, dubbed Balikatan, formally opened on Monday. (Donna Pazzibugan) Balikatan opens amid defacing of US Embassy signage Armed Forces chief Gen. Jessie Oellosa yesterday said Filipino troops need to hone their skills in joint military exercises with the United States in light of the standoff with China at the disputed Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal.(Victor Reyes) Philippine~ US military exercises start MILITARY exercises between the Philippines and the United States that started on Monday are proof of the two countries' commitment to move "shoulder to shoulder" for stability, security and development, according to Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Jessie Dellosa. (William Depasupil) Panatag Shoal ours since 1734 The Panatag Shoal, located 124 nautical miles off the province of Zambales, has belonged to the Philippines since 1734, Rep. Jun Omar Ebdane of Zambales said on Monday. This declaration was made through House Resolution 2322 expressing support to Zambales in its claim that Baja de Masinloc or the Panatag Shoal, internationally known as Scarborough Shoal, is part of Zambales. (llanesa T. Panti) RP, US Troops Start Balikatan Around 6,800 Filipino and American soldiers yesterday began holding joint military exercises as part of Balikatan 2012 (BK12) even as Phil Star p. 6 NEWSPAPER Phil Star p, A-20


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tension remained from the stand'""loff of Philippine and Chinese naval vessels off Scarborough shoal in the disputed Spratfy islands. Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff, Gen. Jessie Dellosa said the bilateral military training was a timely boost to the two nations' alliance amid growing security challenges in the region. (Elena Aben) The Philippines hailed yesterday the start of major war games with the United States as a timely boost to the two nation's military alliance amid growing regional security challenges. More than 6,000 Filipino and US soldiers will take part in the 12 days of exercises across the Philippines, which come as the host nation is embroiled in an escalating dispute with China over rival claims to the South China Sea. 7,000 troops star drills near disputed sea area US and Philippine military offICials said Monday nearly 7,000 American and Filipino troops had begun two weeks of major military exercises but stressed that China was not an imaginary target. Anny Maj. Emmanuel Garcia said the annual drills, called Balikatan or shoulder-toshoulder, would include combat maneuvers involving the mock retaking by US-backed Filipino troops of an oil rig supposedly seized by terrorists near the South China Sea. Palawan to get schools through 'Balikatan; SOME 22,000 residents of Palawan stand to benefit from this year's Balikatan exercises. "Balikatan 2012~, just like the exercises in 2008 and 2010] will again focus on Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Response Training. Filipino and American soldiers will construct five school buildings with three classrooms each in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan's urbanized capital. The school buildings will have complete water system, restrooms and solar-conducive facilities. (Kristyn Nika Lazo) We're not going to war Stressing that he did not intend to go to war against China, President Benigno Aquino III said on Monday he was attempting to ease tensions at Scarborough Shoal by deploying a Coast Guard cutter in the area to match Beijing's civilian vessel there and continuing talks with Chinese diplomats. (Christine Avendano) Let's jaw-jaw, not war-war Some quarters have noted that the Philippines can't win even in pitikan ng ilong - flicking of noses - against China, according to President Aquino. So borrowing a phrase from Britain's wartime Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Aquino said yesterday, "Ifs better to jaw] jaw. jaw than to war, war, war." (Aurea Calica) Phi ship harassed; protest filed The Philippines lodged yesterday another diplomatic protest over the harassment of a Philippine-registered research ship by Chinese vessels and aircraft in Scarborough Shoal as talks between the two sides again ended in a stalemate, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said yesterday. Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said acting OFA Secretary Erlinda Basilio handed yesterday afternoon a diplomatic note to Chinese Ambassador Ma Keqing. {Pia Braao} Scarborough protest THE Philippines yesterday lodged a diplomatic protest over the harassment by Chinese ships and aircraft on civilian ship MIY Saranggani, a Philippine-registered vessel which was conducting archeological studies in the Panatag shoal (Scarborough). The protest was coursed through Chinese ambassador Ma Keqing during a meeting late Monday afternoon with Philippine foreign officials led by Undersecretary Erlinda Basilio. (Evangeline de Vera) Tempop.2


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PH won't star war with China - Pnoy PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III on Monday said the Philippines would not start a war with China over a disputed shoal where their ships have figured in a tense naval standoff for a week. He said Manila would assert its sovereignty over the Scarborough Shoal off the northwestern Philippines but had pulled out a warship and replaced it with a coast uard vessel to "de-escalate the situation." Jo ce Panares Naval standoff ng 'Pinas at China, patuloy pa rin Nauna nang iniulat na humupa na ang isang linggong naval standoff ng Pilipinas at China sa Panatag Reef sa pinag-aagawang West Philippine Sea, ngunit mistulang nagsimulang muli ang tensiyon makaraang magpadala ang China ng ikalawang barko at isang eroplano na sandaling na atrul a sa lu ar noon Lin o.

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re Army, police now threats to UP students (Krissy Conti) Phi Navy flagship should never have left (Bobit Avila) POI p, A-14

April 2012

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"Student acttvists protest! ng_Bal ikatan . deface US embassy seal:
Student activists defaced the seal' here in our deployment so that no "We are just here for theBalikatan of the United States embassy along ;similar incident would happen again, exercises," said US Marine Lt. Col. Roxas Boulevard in Manila to protest They were more or less about 100 Curtis Smith, spokesman for the US the Philippines-US Balikatan military' militants," Estilles said. . Balikatan contingent, in an interview I exercises that started yesterday. ."No ~rrests we~e made: We w:re . in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City. At least 100 members of the left- • thinly dispersed.this morrung. Police The Armed Forces of the Philipist League of Filipino Students (LFS) were then less than 10, and rallyists pines (AFP) urged militant groups surprised Manila policemen and US were about 100.Wedonotwanttocre~ to avoid damaging property when embassy security guards. The students ate any violent reaction. We were not I staging mass demonstrations. . slipped through security to stage a'. able to arrest them because they" . "We respect their views but they lightning rally near the main gate of the . were so many," he said. . should not violate our laws when .embassy at around 6 a.m. then sprayed' . MPD spokesperson and head staging protests. They should not deredandbluepaintontheembassyseal. of the MPD Public Information ,stroyproperty," said BalikaAnother student used an impro-' Offi-ce (PIO) Chief Inspector tan Philippine spokesman vised club to smash the metal letters Erwin Margarejo said that the ' Maj. Emmanuel .Garcia, of the seal while security guards Constitution guarantees the right He also asked the activwatched helplessly from the embassy at tallyists topeacefully assemble' ists to consider the benefits compound. . .and air theirsentiments. of staging the bilateral exThere were no Manila policemen , "But if they will violate the ercises. Garcia claimed the or crowd control unit on site to con; -Iaw, the police is also mandated exercises would enhance the front the activists. disaster preparedness and The students brought placards that By SANDYARANETA knowledge of soldiers while read, "Defend nationalsovereignty!" by' the law to preserve peace and> uplifting the lives of people "Junk VFA (Visiting Forces Agree- order," saidMargarejo.. in poor communities. ment)!" and "US troops out now!" . The LFSsaid, "Despite the people's "These exercises will help The activists also burned an Amer- damar for independence, Noynoy boostour capabilities and ican flag.' Aquino continues to be at the beck wllleriableus to learn new The VFA was signed in 1999 to and call of the government of the us thr:t\.gs/h~s·aia:'A<·' authorize the Phi-US joint military and,.in doing so, exposes himself as US· 'andPh'nfppine milexercises. . a slave for his imperialist masters itary officials say nearly _~~tr1es.sessaid militants pretended' instead of us Filipinos." 7,000 American and FiliCharisse Banez, Anakbayan secrepino troops have begun' to be joggers and then staged the, tary-general, said in a separate statetwo weeks of major military lightnIng rally at the embassy ga.te. ment thatthey also opposed the pres- ' The protesters dispersed after 30 mm- ence of US troops in the Philippines. exercises in Palawan, but they stress. utes when three policemen arrived. "Thus, we are also opposed to that China is not an imaginary target. The police failed to arrest any activist. the Balikatan war games between Garcia said Monday that the Embassy security guards decided American and Filipino troops which annual drills, called Balikatan or nottogooutofthecompound,butthey will begin today;. and will take plac~ shoulder-ta-shoulder, will include took photographs of the students who simultaneously in several parts of the combat maneuvers involving the· were vandalizing the embassy seal, Philippines," Banez said. Banez said mock retaking by US-backed Filipino Policemen later blocked several these war games allow US troops to be troops of an oil rig supposedly seized militants who tried to return to the based in the country without the actual by terrorists near the,South China Sea. embas~y.. and physical military bases which the In a speech at the opening ceremoSenior S_upenn~endent R~na~d Philippine government had evicted . ny for the exercises, Armed Forces Romero Estilles, chief of the District . back in 1991 and which are expressly chief Gen. Jessie Dellosa did not Directorial Staff of MPD, told The I forbidden under the Constitution. specifically mention China but said STA~ that .they have sent some 100.. American troops who are part the war games highlighted strong US Manda P?hcemen to secure the em- of this .year's Balikatan military exsupport for its weaker ally. "Given bassy perimeter, . ercises refused to comment on the the international situation we are in, "There was a lightning rally made defacing of the US embassy seal. I say that this exercise, in coordinaby the militants. And they threw . tion with all those we had in the past, some paint on the seal of the embassy. (is) timely and mutually be~eficiaI," That's why we have reinforcements. Dellosa said. -,---, OFFICE OF THE ARMY CHIEF PUBLIC AFFAIRS - Email - Tel no. (02) 892-1693, Local: 5287, 5295


. 'The conduct of this annual event reflects the aspirations to further former US military base at the Clark relations with our strategic ally, a Freeport in Pampanga to protest the commitment that has to be nurtured Balikatan exercises. "These military exercises have especially in the context of the evolvbeen proven to be enormously taxing ing challenges in the region." ThePhilippines has over the past year on the environment and local communities. In the past Balikatan exermade repeated public calls for closer military ties with the United States, its cises, war and combat simulations which involved naval maneuverings former colonial ruler and longtime ally, and live fire exercises have caused as part of its strategy to deal with China coral reef destruction and ecological over a maritime dispute, pollution. These activities also conChina claims nearly all of the South sumed massive resources like fossil China Sea, even waters approaching fuels and released large volumes of the coasts of the Philippines, Vietnam, toxic waste into air, land, and sea," Brunei and Malaysia. said Frances Quimpo, secretary-genTensions spiked again last week eral of environmental political group when the Philippines sent its biggest warship to Scarborough Shoal, about Kalikasanparty-list group. The Kalikasan-People's Network 230 kilometers west of Zamables, for the Environment (PNE) said the where 'eight Chinese fishing boats caravan aims to raise awareness on had been seen. . the negative social, political and The Philippine government has. environmental impacts of the 2012 sought to emphasize that the BalikaBalikatan exercises. tan exercises have .nothing to do with, The activists said that in 2004, US the Scarborough Shoal dispute and . Naval ships participating in Balikatan there is no reason for the war games .exercises allegedly dumped sewage to provoke China, ;and oil in Subic Bay. However, the Philippine military "These same military exercises will has confirmed some of-the drills will definitely exact a heavy toll on the prisbe held just off the western coast of tine environment of Palawan and its Palawan in waters facing the South surrounding marine ecology. Not only China Sea. Palawefios but also all Filipinos should ,The Balikatan exercises are also \ oppose the anti-environment Balikatan bemg held as the United States is reexercises. The local govenunent units building its military presence across in Palawan province and Puerto Prinethe Asia Pacific/partly to counter esa can declare their area as a Balikatan the growingpolitic~1, economic and military exercise free-zone like 'what military might of China. Davao City did," Quirnpo said. China has criticized the US move, Some 1,000. members of the Aly. with the Chinese defense ministry ansa ng mga Magbubukid sa Gitnang describing it as proof of a "Cold War Luson (AMGL) and other groups mentality," also joined the protests at the Clark President Aquino said last month Freeport. he was willing to help the US in this . They said hundreds of farmers context by allowing more joint exerand fisherfolk in Central Luzon are cises such as Balikatan. again likely to be barred access to More anti-8alikatan their livelihood sources to give way protests to Balikatan under the VFA. . Environmental activists joined yesterday's caravan from Manila to the


. "The areas of Balikatan exercises are ~su~lly where farmers, fisherfolk ~nd mdlger;ous people get their liveli~:lOod. Dunng these dangerous exerC1s~s·they ban~e~ from attending are th~lr crops and fishing in the sea," said Joseph Canlas, AMGL chairman .. Anak1?awis party-list Rep. Ra~ael IyIanano urged yesterday "all freed-(ilmloving Filipinos to oppose th~_latest US-Philippines Balikatan truhtaryexercises." ~'?n~e again, US is using the Philippines as a launching pad of Its ~~fet;ls~strategy shift to the AsiaPacific. It IS enraging that. the Aquino government willingly allows this mockery. of our,;,atio~al sovereignty and pat:lmony, Mariano said. - WIth Evelyn Macairan Alexis R?mero, Ding Cervantes, Rhodina VIllanueva, Ding Cervantes AP AFP' r r








Balikatan bad for ecology, experts say
were left by fishermen," Aline said. He also noted that there THE INTENSIFIEDmilitary ex- were reports of saltwater intruercises in the West Philippine sion in some of the islands Sea is threatening to disrupt the where military buildings were ecological system and harm the constructed. endangered species, scientists Conservation International is and environmentalists yester- not the only environmental day warned. group that has raised red flags Dr. Perry Alino, a marine sci- over the military activities in entist at the 'University of the, Philippine territories. Kalikasani Philippines and the Conserva- People's Network for the Envi• tion International, said the con- ronment has warned that the Ba: struction of military installation likatan exercises between Philip~'in the disputed Sprady islands pine and US forces in Palawan rIn the area the rest of the world could disrupt the ecologyand the caJk the .South Chlrla·Sea .has "local communities there. ". degraded some of the islands "In the past Balikatan exercis~ and affected the population of es, war and combat simulations marine wildlife. which involved naval rnaneu"We cannot see sharks in the verings and live fire exercises transect area anymore. There have caused coral reef destrucused to be a lot of sharks there. tion and ecological pollution. Now we only see shark nets that These activities also consumed By Kristine L. Alave massive resources like fossil fuels and released large volumes of toxic waste into air, land, and sea," said Frances Quimpo, secretary general of party-list group Kalikasan, "Ecological damage, toxic wastes and live ordnance are. among the dangerous effects of US military exercises on our. country's ecological health. During exercises,the military use live ammunitions, .employ heavy bombardment, and use mammoth vehicles like tanks and ships. These have a massive ecological footprint that affects forests, mountains, and coastal areas. At the same time, these pollutive and wasteful activities endanger the safety and lives of communities near the exercise area," said Clemente Bautista Jr., Kalikasannational coordinator.








AFP: Balikatan to boost Malampaya security
By Dona Z. Pazzibugan
THE ARMED Forces of the Philippines seeks to boost its capability to secure the Malampaya natural g~s platform and oil exploration projects off Palawan from terrorist attacks by 'training with American troops in their bilateral military exercises. The latest large-scale joint military exercises between the Philippines and the United States, dubbed Balikatan, formally opened yesterday. Rear Adm. Victor Martir, Balikatan exercise director for the Philippines, said the combined 6,OOO-strong forces would take part in 60 training events in Luzon and Palawan until April 27. He particularly cited the forthcoming training in searchand-rescue operations, and gas and oil platform-security operations.




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"The Scarborough (Panatag '1\<.,,"" fi"''' ""'.~ '<J:.\-d Amphibious training exercisShoal) incident and Balikatan In a speech at the opening c;;~ to violence over recent decades es under Balikatan have been . are two separate activities. One emony for the exercisesfn-Mani-:" the .Philippines' and Vietnam held before in Palawan. which : is an incident. This is an annual la, Armed FO!K~~ ~~W\ ',,§a.l~~~t.t¥;e;a{!.q.,was Wat be-' faces the West philippine Sea activity that we hold together Lt. Gen. Jessl~ De.llosasaid the coming increasingly aggressive where the Philippines is locked with the US Armed Forces," he war games highlighted strong in staking its claim to the sea, in an increasingly tense territosaid. . U~,s~pportfo~its we~er ally: The Philippines accused Chirial dispute,with China over the Last week, the Philippines Given the I.nternatlOnal situ- nese vessels of firing warning Spratly group of islands. sent its biggest warship to the! anon we are m, I say that this shots at Filipino fishermen haAsked why training exercises Scarborough Shoal about exercise, in coo~dination rassing an oil exploration v~ssel were being held in Palawan 230 kilometers west of Luzon, a,l1those we had III the past, (IS) and laying markers in areas again, Martir said the Philip- where eight Chinese fishing: timely and mutually benefi- close to the Philippine landpine military wanted to im- boats had been seen. cial," Dellosa said. mass. . prove on securing Malampaya. China deployed three vessels He said the annual event "reThe Balikatan exercises are "This is a competency that to stop Philippine personnel i fleers the. aspirations to further being held as the United States the Armed Forces would like to from arresting the fishermen,! relations.with our strategic ally, is rebuilding its military presimprove on. Now that we have and the dispute escalated with i a comrmtrnent that has to be ence across the Asia-Pacific gas and oil platforms, it is the both countries launching I nurtured esped~y in the con- partly to counter the growing competency that we would like protests and trading accusa- j :ext of th~ e~olvmg challenges political, economic and military to enhance," he told reporters tions that the other was violat-: m the region. might of China. at the opening ceremony held ing their sovereign territory. President Aquino said last in Camp Aguinaldo. While the fishing boats left. Competing daims month he was willing to help the shoal over the weekend, I China and Taiwan claim the United States in this context 9~magnitude quake both nations are continuing to nearly all of West Philippine by allowing more joint exercises Exercise director for the Unit-assert their sovereignty over the' Sea, even waters approaching such as Balikatan, ed States, Brig. Gen. Frederick area, which is many hundreds the coasts of the Philippines, Padilla highlighted the tabletop : of kilometers from the nearest Vietnam, Brunei and Malaysia. exercise component that would. i major Chinese landmass. The competing claims have simulate disaster response in . for decades made the case a 9.0-magnitllde earth- Support for weaker ally sea..,-where there are shipping quake strikes Metro Manila. . '~ we have reiterated every .routes vital for global trade and. Martir reiterated that the year in our speeches, Balikatanwhich is believed to hold huge kind of exercises for this year's is for the improvement, en- deposits of fossil fuels-a poBalikatan were firmed up sever- hancement of our combat readi- tential flash point for military al months ago. ' ness and our interoperability as conflict. a combined force," Martir said. While diplomatic efforts have kept the dispute from flaring inI I

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'Cold War mentality'
China has criticized the "This exercise is, from our greater US focus on Asia, With standpoint, not linked to any the Chinese defense ministry particular situation," .Padilla describing it as proof of a "Cold said. War mentality." Asked if China should be . Padilla confirmed yesterday alarmed, USMarine Lt, Col. Curthe exercises were part of US ' tis Hill said at a news conference President Barack Obarna's plan; . that the exercises would not foto build a stronger military cus on any nation as an adverpresence in the Asia-Pacific. sary. "The President of the United "There is no reason for anyStates has stated that it is the one to feel threatened by us desire of our country to be en- . coming together, working gaged more in the Pacific rethrough our interoperabilities gion-that includes working so we can better respond and with the Filipino government . help people across the region," and the armed forces," Padilla Hill said. With reports from told reporters. AFPandAP , But Padilla denied theexercise was meant as a warning to China amid its dispute with the .- __ ...._.------.Philippines over Scarborough .._--:_-:-~ OFFICE OF THE ARMYCI Shoal, .. ., Tef no. (02) 892-1693. local: 5287.5295

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SHOULDER TO SHOULDER US Air Force Brig. Gen: Frederick Padilla and Philippine Navy Rear Adm. Victor Martir, joint directors of Balikatan 20 i2,Iaunch joint exercises between US and Philippine troops. Inceremonies held at Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City on Monday. The exercises. which run till April 27, include humanitarian work and disaster response. MAAlANNE BERMUDEZ


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Mulaya 'Ballkatan' opens amid defacing of US Embassy signage
The N;Jtfonal Newspaper ..

This year's Balikatan, Which will involve 4,500 US troops and 2,300 Filipino soldiers, will focus ARMED Forces chief Gen. Jessie DeUosa yesmore on humanitarian assistance and disaster, terday said Filipino troops need to hone their . response. The exercises will run until April 27. skills in joint military exercises with the United Rear Admiral Victor Emmanuel Martir, exerStates in light of the standoff with China at the cise director on the Philippine side, said the disputed Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal, Scarborough Shoal standoff and the Balikatan In his address during the opening rites of this exercises are "two separate activities. " year's edition of the Balikatan exercises, Dellosa , "One is an incident," he said referring to the said "it is imperative for our ground forces to standoff, "This (Balikatan exercises) is an ansustain operational readiness keeping in mind nual activity that we hold together with the US the critical times that we are in now," Armed Forces. As we have reiterated every year "It is during these times that our alliances must in our speeches, Balikatan is for the improvebe reaffirmed and through Balikatan, in which ment, enhancement of our combat readiness joint Philippine-US activities are conducted, we and our interoperability as a combined force." know of course readiness is achieved," he said. Militant groups defaced the seal of the United He said while the military has had successes States embassy in Manila to protest the-presence in terms of internal security operations, "we re- of US military in this year's Balikatan exercises. main in a shadow of doubt pertaining to certain Anakbayan and League of Filipino Students international issues. " even posted pictures of members vandalizing For his part, US ambassador Harry Thomas said the embassy signage and seal on their Facethe capability of both Philippine and US militaries book page. "will be more graphic and more accurate because Some of them burned a replica of the Ameriof the training you are undergoing now," can flag. - With EvangeUne de li-ra .


Balikatan opens, Linking arms for this year's Balika!an are (from left) Maj. Gen. Frederick Padilla of the United States, AFP chief Genera! Jessie Oe1l06a,Patricia Ann Paez of the DFAAmerican Affairs desk, US Ambassador Harry Thomas and Rear Admiral Victor Emmanuel C. Martir of the AFP, PHOTO BY ROllY SALVADOR





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1:1 us Brigadier6en. Frederick Padilla and Philippine Rear Admiral Victor Emmanuel Martirwatch the Balikatan flag being unfurled during the opening of the exercises on Monday. PHOTO BY MIGUEL DEGUZMAN

Philippine-US military exercisesstart
BY WilLIAM B. DEPA,SUPlt REPORTER ..... MILITARY exercises between the Philippines and the United States that started on Monday are proof of the two coun- . tries' commitment to move· shoulder to shoulder" for stability, security and development, according to Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFr) Chief of Staff Iessie Dellosa, "Given the international situation we are in, I say that this exercise, in coordination with all those we had inthe past; [is 1 timely and mutually beneficial," Dellosa said during the opening ceremony of the exercises without specifically mentioning the incident at the Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal that led to a stalemate between China and the Philippines. "It is during these times that our alliances must be reaffirmed and through Balikatan, in which joint Philippine-US activities are conducted," he added. 'The conduct of this annual event reflects the aspirations to further relations with our strategic ally, a commitment that has to be nurtured especially in the context of the evolving challenges in the re- . gion," the Armed Forces chief said. More than 6,000 Filipino and American soldiers will take part in the 12 days of exercises across the Philippines.




For the first time, the exercises will include the participation of partner nations in Southeast Asia and other states like Japan, Australia and South Korea. "It will involve more than six thousand troops from the Philippines and-the US, some 10 participants from Asean and 15 from our partner nations," Dellosa said, adding that the exercises demand elevating the level of transparency "so that the Filipino people and our neighboring countries would be enlightened on the training's real purpose." "Let it be clear that our Armed Forces mean well, that our actions are driven by a firm resolve to improve our capacities for defense, security and development," ·the AFP chief stressed. The Philippines and US governments are signatories to the 1951 Mutua! Defense Treaty, which bounds the two countries to support each other if either was attacked by another country, The Philippine government has sought to emphasize that the

Balikatan exercises have nothing to do with thePanatag Shoal dispute and there is no reason for the war games to provoke China. However, the Philippine military has confirmed that some of the drills will be held just off the western coast of Palawan in waters facing the West Philippine Sea. The exerdses are also being held as the United States is rebuilding its military presence across the Asia Pacific, partly to counter the growing political, economic and military might of China. China has criticized the US move, with the Chinese defense ministry describing it as proof of a "Cold War mentality." However, President Benigno Aquino 3rd told the Armed Forces last month that he was willing to help Washington in this context by allowing more joint exercises such as Balikatan. Meanwhile,about 100activistsdefaced the US Embassy seal during an early . morning protest also on Monday.


The rally kicked off nationwide movement to protest the holding of the exercises, The protest, led by League ofFilipino Students and Anakbayan, called for an end to US military intervention and condemned the 'continuing history of US oppression and colonialism." The activists also assailed President Aquino for being a US "puppet and fan boy" and for inviting further US military intervention and increasing American presence. A militant urban poor group called the military exercises "war traps," which the US is using to provoke China into another territorial war, 'The US has no choice but to create another war, similar to the ones it led in Iraq and Afghanistan, in order to resuscitate its dying economy," Kadamay National Secretary-General Gloria Arellano said in a statement. "The Aquino government is no different from the previous regimes in acting as a true puppet of the US in its political affairs. Aquino is an uncunning president who will ) bring the Philippines into the front line of another world war as the global economic crisis continues to worsen in the months and years to come," he added.


11- April


BY LLANESCA 1. PANTI, WILLIAM 8. DEPASUPIL AND JAIME R. PllAPIL REPORTERS THE Panatag Shoal, located 124 nautical miles off the province of Zarnbales, has belonged to the Philippines since 1734, Rep. Iun Omar Ebdane of Zambales said on Monday. This declaration was made through House Resolution 2322 expressing support to ~ambales in its claim that Bajo de Masmloc or the .Panatag Shoal, internationally known as Scarborough Shoal, is part of Zambales. Ebdane's resolution came amid the lingering standoff between Philippine and Chinese forces that arose from the incursion of eight Chinese fishing vessels caught with endangered corals, gi- . ant clams and baby sharks. The lawmaker said that the earliest and most accurate map of the area, named Carta hydrographica y chorographica de las isles Filipinas by Fr. Pedro Murillo Velarde, 5J, and published in 1734, included Baja de Masinloc as .part of Zambales. The name Bajo de Masinloc, which means "Below Masinloc," was a name given to the shoal by the Spaniards, the first conquerors of the Philippines. In 1792, another map drawn by the Malaspina expedition and published in 1808 in Madrid, Spain also showed Bajo de Masinloc as part of Philippine territory, "The map showed the route of the Malaspina expedition to and around the shoal. It was reproduced in the Atlas of the 1939 Philippine Census.which was published in Manila a year later," Ebdane said. Moreover, the Mapa Genera!' Islas Filipinas, Observatorio de Manila published in 1990 by the US Coast and Geodetic Survey, also included Baja 'de t0asjnh?s_as part of the Philippines .. "This [resolution] is an expression of my support to my constituents' desire to protect what is rightfully theirs," Ebdane added. :" tio~ :d:rt~~eL~;i~~dt~a~:a~S the Panatag Shoal, which lies in the vast West Philippine Sea, belongs to the Philippines because it lies within the 200


zone of th t China heocoun ry'l . II he i , wever, C alms ate IS. lands in the West Philippine Sea, which includes Scarborough, the Spratlys and Paracel i Ian d s. arace IS C . Even b erore Ebd ane fil ed h'IS reso1 Iution .and beflore th e P anatag mer.. dent occurred, the Municipality of d Mas'In Ioc, Z am b a Ies aIrea dv i y issue Resolution No. 62-11 declarin Baio ·I fM ?1j de Mas 1n oc as part a asm oc, Zarnbales. The resolution was endorsed by the Provincial Board of Zarnbales on June 6, 2011. Meanwhile, the Philippine Coast Guard on Monday deployed another search and rescue vessel to Panatag (Scarborough} Shoal. Lt. Commander Algier Ricafrente, Coast Guard spokesman, said that BRP Edsa will replace BRP Pampanga, which had been in the area since last week. He added that ERP Pampanga needs to get new supplies. ERP Edsa arrived at the shoal at 7 a.m.yesterday. . The BRP Pampanga was sent to the Panatag Shoal to give assistance to the Philippine Navy, particularly in providing security over the country's territory. . Northern Luzon Command chief Lt. Gen. Anthony Alcantara said that BRP Edsa and two Chinese surveillance ships remain in the disputed area. Despite the standoff, Alcantara said that activities in the -area is normal with Filipino fishermen allowed togo in and out of the shoal without being harassed by the Chinese. 'We are continuously monitoring the situation in the area, as of this moment it is very stable. very normat: he said. Philippine Navy Vice Admiral Alexander Pama said that BRPGregorio del Pilar is on standby for any mission order from the higher headquarters. Pama said that they would abide with the agreement between the two countries not to do anything to escalate the tension in the shoal. The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) expressed hopes that both countries would be able resolve the dispute soon. DFA spokesman Raul Hernandez said that the Philippine government has raised the issue on the harassment by a Chinese vessel of a Philippineregistered vessel conducting scientific research in the area with China's Ambassador to Manila Ma Keqing. The department is awaiting the response of the Chinese embassy.


1!t tm tJ .1

H d em an ez mamtame t at e • Chinese fishermen caught at the Ph' . fi a~at~g S °t,,:olate! th~co~n;~ s oa ISrten;Sthcopeh,sl~n(: e"s"w hiS a pa t 0 e1 I ippmes. e ope h tho . t a we so ve IS issue as soon as ." h possible, e added. .. h ~ .e DF-:- has asslg~ed E~hnda Bas!110to directly negotiate With the Chi Arnb dor i . mes: assa .or In seeking a resolution to the dispute.



Another ship deployed



(3~~~;s): ·1 .·.

President Benigno : Aquino 3rd also on Monday said· that he is considering replacing · Manila's envoy to Beijing, Domingo · Lee, with a skilled diplomat who . could resolve conflicts and reduce tensions at the Panatag shoal. Mr. Aquino admitted that he had been toying with the idea for quite sometime after Lee was bypassed by the Commission on Appointments three times. "1 have been considering the question and I expect a resolution soon on that matter, perhaps earlier than previously planned. That is a distinct possibility," the President told reporters in rare press conference. "We have to listen also to the wisdom also of the Commission on Appointments, specifically one member there. Are there grounds for it? As the situation changed, that changes also the parameters of the ambassador we need in China. He was appointed a year ago and the considerations were different. Now, we have the Scarborough incident · and there are other issues. Does he possess the necessary skills to be able to help US navigate this treacherous water at this point in timer' Mr. Aquino asked. "We want to de-escalate the situation [at the Panatag Shoal]," he stressed. The Panatag Shoal is a triangle of small islands in the West Philippine Sea circling a lagoon of 150 square kilometers. 1t is part of the Philip. pines' 200-nautical-mile exclusive economic zone, which is recognized by the Uncles. Mr. Aquino however ruled out the possibility of going to war with China, saying its 1.3 billion population is no match to the Philippines' 94 million. "Pipitikin lang nila tayo [they can

; New envoy mulled

i In Malacaiiang,

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Senators on Monday pushed for a review of the security measures entered into by the Philippines with the United States (US) and other Asian countries. Senators Gregorio Honasan and Joker Arroyo aired the call amid the standoff between the Philippines and China at the Panatag shoal. The two senators said that the us and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) were mysteriously quiet during the standoff. Honasan, a member of the Senate Committee on national defense and security, said that despite the Mutual Defense Treaty between the country and the US, the American government showed tepid support to the Philippines in its claim on areas in the West Philippine Sea. Apart from the Mutual Defense Treaty it signed with the US, the senator said that the Philippines has also security agreements with other member-countries of Asean, tried diplomacy two weeks ago. We tried to seek the help of Asean to support our position. But to our regret, they did not issue a resolution supporting Philippine position," Arroyo bewailed. "Ang America. wala namang dedaration ng at least sinasabi nilang easy easy lang maski simpatiya wala Tin. So wala yung support ng Asean, wala ring support ng US (Even America has no declaration of support to the Philip" pines. The Asean and the did not support us)," he said.

Review pacts ..







· ·


/·'1 April



Page: ....,;6_-


RP,US Troops _Start Balikatan

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Around 6,800 Filipino and American soldiers yesteI"~Y began holdingjoint military ~'rcises as part of Balikatan 2012 CBK12)even as tension remained from Ute standoff of Philippine and Chinese naval vessels off Scarborough shoal in the disputed SpratlyIslands. Armed Forces.of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff, Gen. Jessie Dellosa said the bilateral military training was a timely boost to the two nations' alliance amid growing secll,ritychalienges in the region. MeanWhile, United States Ambassador Harry K. Thomas Jr. said the annual Balikatan exercise is in keeping with the spirit of the 61-year old Mutual Defense Treaty which is made more significant by bilateral, regional, and global Issues. In his message at the opening of BK12 at Camp Aguinaldo, Dellosa said, "It is imperative for our ground 'forces to sustain operational readi-. ness keeping inmind the critical . times that we are in now." "The conduct ofthis annual event _reflects the aspirations to further relations with our strategic ally, a commitment that hasto be nurtured especially in the context of the evolving challenges in the region," he said, Also during theformal start ofthe exercises which also focus on humanitarian and disaster response, Thomas said, "True to the meaning of 'Balikatan' - shoulder to shoulder - this exercise is about a great partnership between the Philippines and theH~~:g about our com-



mondevotion topeace that has sustained our Philippines-US alliance through the years>


April 2012


_1-_.--__ -

MANILA (AFP) - The Philippines hailed yesterday the start of major war gan14;!swith the United States as a timely boost to the two nations' alliance amid growing regional security challenges.
More than 6,()OOl=!lipinoand US sold1erS will take part in the 12 days of exercises across the Philippines, which come as the host nation is embroiled in an dispute with Chil' fi\tpldaims to


China sea. (See related story on Page 4) - not spedficaUy mention China but said the In a speech at the opening ceremony for war games highlighted strong US support the exercises in camp Aguinaldo in,Quelon for its weaker ally. City, General Jessie DeUosa, Armed Forces "Given the international situatton we are of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff, did in, I say that this exercise, in coordination


war ...·

South ChinriSea.

While··.. iplomatic . efforts ... d have largely keptJhe dispute from flaring into violence over recent .counter .·thegrowingpolltical, deeades,thePhUipplnes and Viet- ·.ecOnortlic .•• and··.mUitarymlghtof namseld last year that China was China. • .....• ': ........•.... becoming intreaslnglyaggreSsive .: .ChinahGis criticized the US ·.1 ThePhmppinesatcUsedChl~ •. inistry describing it as proof of : m nese.vessels of firing waming a \'ColdWarmentallty7: .. <>! shots ·atFilipinoJisherrnen,ha~ .• HoweVerPresidentA~uin()toId· rassing<an ·oil.·.expioration.·.. essel.·.··AgenceFrantepresselastmonth.· .. v andtaying marketsinareasdosehewas willing tohelpt;heUS In to Philippine landmass. ...•...... .' thisconteXtbyaUowingmorE! ...•... Tensions spikedagainJastweek .•joinfexerdsessuchasBalikat,an. . when the •• Phillpplnessentlts bl.g-· .......•.....•........•..••.•...••. ·.•• . 7,000 'TROOps < ..•....•...•....•... ·gestwarShip·.tolhe·.Starborough . ·.·M. AN.Il.Al. APJ-US ...al1.d.Phi .• ..... ·Up-.·
in staklngitsdail'li tothesea, ....rtlove,withtheChinesedefense

In waters facing the . ... . . .The Ba1ikatan exerdses areelse being held as the United states Is .. ebuilding .Itsmllitary presence r across the Asia Pacificr partly to




··pine· •. militaryoffldals .. tfj•. S ·Qeac1Y··

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... .... . lid ..~.

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to stop PhlltppjAepersoMe1 from .... stress that China IS not antmagi-


arreSting thefisherrneii, and the .. naiytarget; ...........•.••.•..........•••...•...........•..••.......•...•......•.....•.•......... dIspute escalated .. .:Army . Majbr ErnmanueLGattrieslaurichh1gpj"otestsandtrad~ da. .said .•.... Monday ·.that ingaccusations that the otherwas .nual ·drllls~canedeatikatanor violating their sovereign territory~· .shOulder~to-shoulder,wmiiidude





mock retaking by US-baCked FiIi~ riationsarecontlnuingJoassert pinotroopsof an oil rig suppostheir sovereignty over the area, .edlyseizedby terrorists nearthe which Is manyhundredsofkllo~South China Sea. . meters from the nearest major US Marine Ueutehant~ColoThe Philippine government has .: eventswill focuson humanitarian sought to emphasize the SaUka- missions and disaster-response tarr exerclseshave nothing to do drills. .. .. .. ... with the scarborough Shoal dis- ... Beijing has protested military pute and there Is no reason-for drills Involving Americans near the war games to provoke China. the South China Sea, where it is However; the AFP has con- locked with the Philippines and firmed some of the drills will be four other nations in territorial held just off the western coast . rifts.




Hill says most other


\":y April 2012


f.- ~ \

7,000 troops start drills near disputed sea area
Philippine military officials said Monday nearly 7,000 American and Filipino troops had begun two weeks of.major military exercises but stressed that China was not an Symbol of Marine B~ig. Gen. imaginary target. Frederick Padilla (left) and Rear Admiral Anny Maj. Emmanuel Emmanuel Martir of the Philippines unGarcia. said the annual drills, furl the Balikatan flag during the opencalled Balikatan or shouldering ofthe Batikatan exercises in Camp to-shoulder, would include
Aguinaldo in Quezon City.

us . and

.combat maneuvers involving the mock retaking by USbacked Filipino troops of an oil rig supposedly seized by terrorists near the South China Sea. US Marine Lt. CoL Curtis Hill said most other events would focus on humanitarian missions and disaster-response







7 000

~• •

The Metro Manila Development said. it was part of the exercises that also focused on. humanitarian assistance and di-· saster niitigation. . 'The main objective of the Balikatan exercises is to extend assistance to our country," MMDA Chairman Francis Tolention said. Beijing has protested the military drills involving Americans near the South China Sea, where it is locked with the Philippines and four other nations in territorial rifts. The same day thatthe exercises started, left-wing protesters splattered paint on the seal of the US

Embassy in Manila to demand a pullout of American troops taking part in the annual war games. About 70 student activists took. police and embassy guards by surprise early Monday when they threw blue-andred paint at the seaside mission's.main gate and scrawled "U.S. troops out now." They also chipped away letters from the bronze signage and burned a mock American flag. No arrests Were made as the protesters outnumbered the police and later walked away. The. protesters .condemned "the continuing history of US oppression and colonialism." AP, with Macon RamosAraneta and Rio N. Araja

exercise will be made this year.




April 2012


.f{ ----

Palawan to get schoolsthrough 'Balikatan'
SOME 22,000 residents ofPalawan stand to benefit from this year's Balikatan exercises. "Balikatan 2012", just like the exercises in 2008 and 2010, will again focus on Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Response Training. Filipino and American soldiers will construct five school buildings with three classrooms each in Puerto Princess City, Palawan's urbanized capital. The school buildings will have complete water system, restrooms and solar-conducive facilities .. The "Balikatan" is an annual event conducted by the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the United States, It involves military training exercises based on the 1951 Philippine-United States Mutual Defense Treaty that deals with defending and supporting each other even in external attacks of invasion. Col.- Marcelo Burgos,Armed Forces spokesman, said that' theprojects . would benefit atleast 22,000 Palawan .Jtsidents as it also provides free medical, dental. and veterinary civicaction projects, particularly in Barangays .Cabayugan, Macarascas, Bacungan, Inagawan, Mangingisda and Kandis II, all in Puerto Princesa City. Balikatan 2012 also provides military training to both AFP and USAF civil-military personnel to reach out to communities in times of emergencies. More than 4,000 American troops and 2,000 Filipino soldiers are taking part in the joint exercises. "The purpose of the activities is to promote interoperability between the AFP and the US Pacific Command (USPACOM), mature joint and combined CMO capabilities and advance regional security cooperation," Burgos said in a press statement. He added that the main vision of the Balikatan is "to aid and assist people in far-flung communities where there are scarcities in their basic needs. " During last year's "Balikatan." three'communities in Central Luzon were provided with two duplex schools and eight comfort rooms each at Lubigan Elementary School and Pedro Quines Elementary School in Mayantoc, Tarlac, and Angel C. Manglicmot Elementary School and Taposo Elementary School in Candelaria, Zarnbales. A duplex school building and four comfort rooms were also built at Pudakit Elementary School in San Antonio, Zarnbales while Brgy Pedro, Quines in Mayantocwas given a flood mitigation project. AFP Chief Lt. Gen. Jesse D. Dellosa said the filipino and US troops coming together through the annual "Balikatan n manifests a "healthy and vibrant" cooperation between the two nations. Other than AFP and iJSAF, the agencies involved in the "Balikatan" program are the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), National Risk Reduction Management Council (NDRRMC) and Metra- Manila Development Authority (MMDA). . h.' .


-17 "


April 2012

'We're not going to war~
.meant.• ·ease·.·.··.tenSIOn..i······ ·to•• ••

~~~~r:;~~li1~~m~~~/··· fro.m ·ScarU·oro······nlt<. ',

told reporters,quodngWiDStort .. .·on. · theweek"oldstal1d01'fatthe ' Churchill •..•......• \ ..••........••.•....• shoa1whos~resoluti()ll.hesaid) In (ihastily.called ·riewscon •..••...... .. ·WRsa''Workinl'rogt'ess}'i> i··>i •. ...••.. JerenceinlVlal tian.g .toad~ .•.•..•. ·.Mr.·Aquinos~dthe>govem~·· dreSswidespre~dCriticiSinof . ... . .... ··:WE'RENOTJA6 .

·'I6~oilldbe~ifficulfifweaie •• hisH£rtd!irigi()fWepowerctisis.·· . :rtotta1kirigan~()re/'thepresi-··. · •. n.·Mindaluio;t1ieipre~ident,ex~.·. • I .• ..•. said;"lt'sbettenoja.l,V-jaWPlained de~t for the firSt tiWe ti1e •'Virar,;'Mr;A~uino ·.,.· .. ··.tions•.. taken·.byhisgovernIl1~nt ..

ac- •.


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ment had no intention to escala.tetension at theshoal whenit sent its Navy warship;theBRP .Gregodo del Pilan there last week . .. .Using aPowerPoint presenta.tion,the President explained that the Navy.flagshipwas.en route to the easterncoastline of northern Luz()D. .to-standvigil there incase debrisfromthe April 131aunchofa NorthKore.anmissilefell there, ';. .. .. ...."Onitswaythere,.··rtWas···in·formed by a NavYaircraft that it ·spotted fishing vessels and ·(since) part of its duty is to enforceourmaritlme laws ;1t.·inspected(the vessels) and found .... theseel1dangered .species," .• e . h said,referringtopoachedma.rinelifeaboard what turned out tobeChinesecraft·i.·.· .•......••• ·.· .•.... shld the Navy frigate left He the area immedIately ·uponthe . ... arrival'. ofaPhilippine· .·Coast . Guardseardtand rescue vessel whichhedescribedasa."ciVil: .:ian component"underthe De" paltment ofTransportatlonand ··.Comii:J.unica1:ious•and ·····.··which· . •• asdis.patche~r"justt()d~motl.w strate that.wewilnf tode-escalate the situation;" ....•.. .••..../ ... • Yesterday;hesaidPCG vessel 003 was replaced by peG vessel002 that it could refuel and take on provisions likewater, "We don't have replenishmentatseacapabilities:' he ,



. "$0002 will.maintain station


toassertpurs.o"ereignty over the ·Scarb'oroughShoal, .which is about 160 nautical miles (296 km): fromotifcoastIine and which. is well within our exclu.:sive economic zone," .the Chief Executive said, .

8fPI00~3%7:LTi3~J:2ZB;_'QZS'S0}'S0SSS7SS707777/7"07"07"0'T'777'77'77'77'''"'"'7"77'""77'"~ a reporter pointed Out ...,..,-~-When
to him that authorities were un_",·.,·.. _."'.,· w


able to ··arrest the Chinese am bound to follow that." . poachers and confiscate the That's why he said it was .items they.gotrrhe President important for the two nations shot back: "Will it bebetter for to COritiIlU€ with rheir -diaus to.deploy .allourmaritime .Iogue.vnowbeing conducted .vessels there; prevent 'Chinese between Foreign .Undersecremaritimesurveillaricevesselstaiy ErlindaBasilio and Chithat are unarmed and force Chi-neseAmbassador Ma Keqing, na to react by sending their own . becauseForeign.Secretary AImilitary vessels?" . . . bert delRosariowasnowin ''Would .escalatlonserve .thetheUSoriapre"ibus· engagenati()I1alinterest?"heasked, ment..'. .:.: . . addingthatthetWo sides had~'I'mhopefulthat 'reasonable not stopped .exploring-all·. av- .people".caricorneup with a enues .to .. esolve .the impasse. . situation that will resolve .the r "We have two .missions; .... One, . sittiation,"Mr.Aquiriosaid; .... not to escalaterhesittlationand BasilioandMa.held .discustwo, to' protecrour sovereighty,"sions for 45 ·lIliriutesyesterday he said. . .. .....< . .aftemoon>The Chinese ambas.The President alsodisfulssedsador' declinedcomment On the speculation aboutthedmingof···{)t1tcorneofthetalksbuther .theannualPhmppine-USBa~· pol1tkalt6t1nseloiB~iTien,·· likatanexerdses;'Whichstarted toldteporters,>"Nobreak" yesterday, amid the standoffin . through;" /.« ••........ . the Scarborough Shoal, a c1us- ..•........ DeparfinentofForeignAf. terof.ieefsand isletssurround- •.fairsspokespersc)ll . Raul.Heringa. lagoon ·.vvbicllis'being ·uandez •..• said>"th e •. discussions .' claimed ··.bYChina;.The .• tea·jsi·endedinastalemate,".i·.·.··.·•.. ...•... a ·< separate from the Sptatlys, . ...... Herriaridezalsoanrtounced··· whichis ..<the.· ...·thIltthel>l1illppinesyesterday. b Philippines and ·.China,· .• • .along .•.... lodgedadiplomaticprotest ...• withVietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia. ·.over"actsofharassment"by . andBrunel. . .'. i Chinese ships and alrcraftoffhe '.'IiV\l'ill not serve us any good. ..MYSarahggani,aManila~based thatafatimethatwearetryingvesseldomgarthe61ogkalreto de-escalate the situation, we . search in the shoal area last Willputinpfucesomethlrigthatweek ··•······i ....•.. ·•. ···i.·••••·.•.··\ .••.• ·· wiIlpotentiallybe a subject .. f o Ina news conference .earlier, .complaint of the other side," he ·•l:Ierhandezshttiggedoffsug. ... sa:idinFilipino. . •. .... .:....gestiOJ:1.sbYSeri;Joker Arroyo .. ·\NhiIe he saidhisgovemment ..•that the Philippines had become was ·.preparedtoprotect . ·.thean"orphari" that. couldnotde ....• countrjssovereigrtty"tothe· .... pend on the United States or its limits of Our capabilities," he .partners in the Association of stressed that the Philippines did Southeast Asian Nations topronbthavetheresourcestofighttett its territoryagainst.Chinese the Chinese, .. even in boxing, . intrusions. " . tbejare 1.3billioh; we are 95 "Our regional andIntertiamillion;" tional-partnersrtncluding the . United States,our treaty ally, . N()bt'e~kthrough • are assisting us upgrade out caThe President notedaprovipabilities anubuild a minimum sian in the Constitution that credible defense posture," Her,"werenounce war as our instru- nandez said. ..With a report merit of national policyand I ./rom Jetty E. Esplu1tCldu


.•... .

·.·.<· •.··· ••



- Tel no. (02) 892':'1693. Local: 5287.5295


\-J::April 2012



J -, -Jaw, w not war-war'
Let's jaw-jaw
From Page 1

Some quarters have noted that the Philippines can't win even in piiikan ng ilong - flicking of noses - against China, according to Presi-

Churchill- well, it's attributed en the situation and enrage to ChurchilL., It is: 'Better now each other to the point of (goto jaw-jaw than to war-war.' ing to war?)" Aquino said. dent Aquino. So borrow,Thatmightbeaflippantwayof ."Letme remind all of you, ing a phrase from Britain's saying it but the minute that in our Constitution, we rewartime Prime Minister you stop talking, (it willbe more nounce war as an instrument difficult)," he said. of national policy and I am Winston Churchill, Aquino IJWe are still in constant bound to follow that," he said. said yesterday, lilt's better touch with them. We are still Aquino said the Philippines to jaw! jaw! jaw than to war, clarifying ... stressing and dar- wants the Association of war, war.'! ifying and reiterating our Fe- Southeast Asian Nations Aquino said that while the spective positions," the Presi- (ASEAN) - as a dialogue partdent said. ner of China _ to come up with Philippines is strongly proIIWe have been ready to a code of conduct that would testing China's incursion in protect our sovereignty to the dictate the behavior of parties Scarborough Shoal, it is IiIC- limits of our capabilities. But, . in the West Philippine Sea. knowledging the preeminence again, I will appeal to all of The big difference now, he of diplomacy in resolving the you. Before, it was being stat- said, is that the Philippines is standoff involving two Chinese ed that in a boxing bout with no longer opening its excluvessels and a Philippine search China, with 1.3 billion (popu- sive economic zones to joint and rescue ship,. lation) and We are 95 million, . exploration contracts, as stipScarborough, which the : kahit sa piiikan ng iiong, di tayo ulated in the Constitution. Philippines calls Panatag Shoai,mananalo (even in a nose flickIn the ASEAN summit in lies just 120 nautical miles from ing match, we will not win)," Cambodia, the President said Zambales and is well within he said. . .' disputed and non-disputed the country's 200-rnile exclu"So what are we going to areas should be clearly defined sive economic zone. .gain if we dramatize or wors- because only disputed areas "It will be more difficult could be jointly deif we are not talking. And veloped. . there is a quote from, I think, He said that . Turn to Page 4 even before the Scarborough Shoal incident, China had been claiming the entire West Philippine Seat citing the nine-dash theory and despite the Philippines'strong basis for its claims

. 1

based on the United Nations . Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) to which China is a signatory. IISOhow about those who conform with the UNCLOS? How will China take back its declaration without getting embarrassed? And we know that from the start, that is the difficulty," Aquino said. He also said the deployment of Navy warship BRP Gregorio del Pilar to Scarborough was not a show of force but an enforcement of maritime laws. He said the eight Chinese fishing vessels briefly held at Scarborough were found carrying illegally collected corals, giant clams, and live sharks, Navy personnel who boarded the fishing vessels took photos of the catch. . The President said both the Philippines and China were signatories to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, also known as the Washington Convention, "The point is, in fairness to . China and our case also, the Philippine Navy vessel has been withdrawn for quite a number of days already, as soon as the Coast Guard arrived," Aquino said. The President said the Coast Guard vessel will continue to station a vessel in Scarborough Shoal. . When asked why the Chinese fishermen were allowed to leave with their illegal catch, Aquino said, "Would it be good if we send all our maritime vessels, prevent the Chinese maritime surveillance













..1693,tocal:5287,529S·.··..·.·· • ....









vessels that are unarmed and ~orce C_hina to react by sendmg their own military forces? Would the escalation serve the national interest? That is the only question." . . "I suppose the first vessel that we have at the area was a Philippine Navy vessel and, soon as possible, we dispatched the Coast Guard vess~l.which is, as you know, a civilian component - it is under the DOTC(Department of Transportation anP Communications), if's not even a (Department of National Defensel-attached entity or agency - just to demonstrate that we want to de-escalate the situation. Let meemphasize,to de-escalate the situation" Aquino said. ' "We are in constant touch (with the Chinese embassy)," the President said, clarifying earlier reports that he had talked with Chinese Ambassador to Manila Ma Keqing. I hadn't talked to Ambassador Ma. It was always t~rough t,he secretary of Fore~gn Affairs, And, right now, smc~ th.e ~ecretar% of Foreign Affairs IS In Amenca for various conferences that had previously been scheduled, it's Undersecretary Linda Basilio .who will be talking to Ambassador !VIa.So we're continuing that dialogue,' Aquino said. If~e haven't stopped explonng all of the other ave-. nues. We have raised our points during the last ASEAN summit regarding this. And we are still steadfast that We have two missions - one, not to escalate the situation; and, two, to protect our sovereignty," the President said, . He also emphasized that there was no connection be~een the US-Philippine Balikatan exercises and the Scarborough incident. , "There is no benefit if, during t~e time t~at ",:e are de-escalatmg the situation, we will place something there tha t has the 'potential of being cornplal~ed by both parties," Aquino said. "I'm hopeful that


reasonable people .. , can come up with a situation that will resolve the situation." Foreign Affairs Secretary AIbert del Rosario, before leaving for the US Sunday to attend a conference, said the Philippines is sticking to diplomacy in resolving the Scarborough issue even if it remainsunyield. ingin its position that the area i is Philippine territory. He said. the Philippines should take action following China's redeployment of one of its ships to Scarborough. But he did not specify what action to take. . "Whatever it may be, we would wish to diffuse current ..challenge but·. ' defend our ,sovereig:J;ltyand sovereign rights," Del. Rosario told The STAR. Meanwhile, the Coast Guard has deployed another' ship to Scarborough to relieve . the BRP Pampanga. Lt. Gen. Anthony Alcantara, Northern Luzon (Nolcom) commander, said that BRP EDSA DOS (SAR-002) arrived in the vicinity yesterday morntng. The Pampanga was en route to Manila's South Harbor for re-provisioning. Two Chinese vessels Zhonggou Haijan 75 and Zhonggou Haiian 84 ~ are still in the area. Alcantara, however, described the situation in Scarborough yesterday as generally peaceful. . .The Navy, for its part, said it IS ready to assist the Coast Guard in asserting the country's territorial rights over Scarborough. "The Navy is basically on standby on whatever instructions will be given to us ... we cannot make the decision on our (own) at this level. We leave it to the higher authori-



ties and we will comply with whatever instructions are given;" Navy chief Rear Admiral Alexander Pama said. Pama was responding to questions on whether the Navy would send another ship to the shoal to relieve the one deployed in the area. Pama said the Navy's largest warship Gregorio del Pilar is ready to perform whatever directive would be given to it. Pama said the Del Pilar in Poro Point in La Unionto load supplies and provisions. . "My boys need rest," he said, referring to the off i c e r s and crew of the war sh ip. "We are continuously menHaring the situation in the • area, As of this time, (the situarion is) very stable, very nor- . mal," Alcantara said, , - With Jaime Laude, Alexis Romero, Evelyn Macairan, Pia Lee-Brago .





Hernandez said the actions are in violation of the sovereign right and jurisdiction of the Philippines to conduct marine research in its exclusive economic zone. By PIA LEE-BRAGO "Any attempted action by The Philippines lodged yes- Chinese ships or aircraft terday another diplomatic pro- against the M/Y Saranggani .test over the harassment of a will be considered by the PhilPhilippine-registered research a gross violat~on of ship by Chinese vessels and Its ~ahonal1~ws an? of interaircraft in Scarborough Shoal nahonallaw:he said, as talks between the two sides The Chmese embassy again ended inastalemate the claime~ that the vessel 'was trymg to Departm~nt 0f Foreign Affairs·' rrcien t Chinesesalvage an wreck in (DFA)~ald yest7rday. ::he area. Foreign AffairS spokesn;an . The Philippines demanded Raul Hernandez saidactmg that the Chinese ships and airDFA Secretary Erlinda Basilio craft cease the harassments . ha~ded ye~terdayafter~oon' and fly-bys over the Sarang.a diplomatic note to Chinese gani so the boat and its crew Ambassador Ma Keqing. can complete their work The DFA lodged the protest The DFA said the Sarangon the harassment by.Chinese ships and aircraft of the M!Y Saranggani, a Philippine-registered boat conducting archaeological research in the area.
Turn to Page 4

PhI ship 'harassed; .protest filed

PhI ship

From Page 1

gani is in Bajo de Masinloc (Scarborough Shoal), part of the-municipality of Masinloc, Zambales, which is 124 nautical miles west of Zambales and within the 20b'nautical miles EEZ and continental shelf of the Philippines. Basilio led the DFA in the talks with the Chinese side, as Foreign Affairs Secretary Al~ bert del Rosario is in the United States to attend previosuly scheduled conferences. "Discussions still ended in a stalemate," Hernandez said. He added the DFAwill continue to exert efforts to reach a diplomatic solution. . The Philippines remains committed to a resolution of the standoff in the Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal but Manila will defend its sovereignty and sovereign rights.


- Tel no. (02) 892·1693, Local: 5287, 5295

11- April 2012

The Nat/tHIef Newspaper


Page: _1-..;..1",,_,..-_

'Chinese ships, planes harassed, civilian vessel'


THE Philippines yesterday lodged a diplomatic protest over the harassment by Chinese ships and aircraft on civilian ship M!Y Saranggani, a Philippine-registered vessel which was conducting archeological studies in the Panatag shoal (Scarborough). The protest was coursed through Chinese ambassador MaKeqing during a meeting late Monday afternoon with Philippine foreign officials led by Undersecretary Erlinda Basilio. The harassment of the Civilian ship was protested earlier by Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario, along with the appearance of another Chinese ship and a white aircraft that flew by the area amid continuing negotiations to break the week-long standoff. "Such actions are in violation of the sovereign right and jurisdiction of the Philippines to conduct marine research in the Philippines' exclusive economic zone (EEZ)," a state- . ment from DFAspokesman Raul Hernandez read. Hernandez said the M/Y Saranggani is in Bajo de Masinloc (Scarborough Shoal).The shoal, which is located 124 nautical miles west of Zambaies, has been claimed by the municipality of Masinloc as part of its territory on the strength of a council resolution.

"The Philippines demanded that the Chinese ships and air-: craft cease the harassments of and fly-bysover M/Y Sarangganl so that the boat and its crew can complete its work. Any attempted action by Chinese ships or aircraft against the M/Y Saranggani will be considered by the Philippines as a gross violation of its national laws and of international Iaw," Hernandez said. He said aside from the fly-by over the shoal last Saturday, another Chinese aircraft flew over the area on Sunday. Th<),.DFA is not certain whether the second aircraft was the same 6~ that earlier flew by the shoal.( He said the Philippine government is still "asking questions and demanding answers» from China about the latest act and violation of the status quo. Hernandez said OFASecretary Albert del Rosario, who is currently in the United States, was taken aback and disappointed about the harassment of MY Saranggani,the departure of the Chinese fishing vessels without surrendering the endangered species that they iiiegally gathered, and the addition of one more Chinese vessel in the area. Emerging from a 45-minute meeting with Basilio, Chinese embassy political counselor Bai Tlan told reporters that there was still no breakthrough in the negotiations. Ambassador Ma Keqing declined to give a statement to the media.

Hernandez said the Chinese fishing vessels were not prevented from leaving because both parties are trying to resolve the issue diplomatically. The Philippines wanted the Chinese fishermen to surrender the endangered species that they collected. Members of Akbayan party-list stormed the Chinese Consular Office in MakatiCity on Monday to protest Chinese intrusions in the Panatag shoal, in support of the government position that the shoal is an integral part of Philippine territory. Akbayan also denounced the marine poaching activities reportedly done by Chinese fishing vessels in the area. u, Gen. Anthony Alcantara, commander of the military's Northern Luzon Command, said the Coast Guard's Search and Rescue Vessel 002 Or BRPEdsa Dos arrived around 7 a.m. at the shoal to replace the BRP PamSee CHINESE ).- Page B4

dent said in a press conference when asked if he would reconpanga, which will be refueling. sider the nomination of Lee or Coast Guard spokesman Lt. appoint someone else after the Cmdr, Algier Ricarfrente said CA rejected Lee's nomination as' the Coast Guard ships were envoy for the third time. meant to "stay there and show Aquino said he needs to listen our flag in the area." to the wisdom of the CA memRicafrente said China should bers and go over the concerns not be bothered by the movethey have raised against Lee. ment, saying "this is a routine He said another factor would (movement), we need to refuel, be the brewing tension be. we need to re-provision." tween Manila and Beijing and if .President Aquino said he is Lee could handle it . considering nominating a new "As the situation changed, ambassador to China after the that changes also the parameters Commission on Appointments of the ambassador we need in again deferred the confirmation Back. off. Akbayan group rally in front of Chinese consulate in Makati City. China? ' ..He was appointed a year of Domingo Lee. ago and the considerations were are other issues. Does he possess "Yes, that's a possibility-a different. Ngayon, we have a Scar- the necessary skills to be able to water at this point in time?" he added. - With Victor Reyes and distinct possibility," the Presiborough Shoal incident and there help us navigate this treacherous Jocelyn Montemayor





A..~ '\

PH won't start war with China- PNoy
PRESIDENT Beningo Aquino III ough Shoal off the northwestern on Monday said the Philippines Philippines but had pulled out a would not start a war with China warship and replaced it with a over a disputed shoal where their coast guard vessel to "de-escaships have figured 'in a tense naval late the situation." standoff for a week. 'Mr, Aquino said the PhilipHe said Manila would assert pines would continue talks with its sovereignty over the Scarbor- China to resolve the impasse, which began on Tuesday last week when two Chinese ships prevented the crew of the BRP Gregorio del Pilar, the country's largest warship, from arresting several Chinese fishermen. Mr. Aquino, quoting the late


..".. .... ..... .'. . '.' .... .'.. ' .... lYtnilitaryexetcisesinpalawantakea1noreactiveroleiIiad:.British ..Prime ...••. MuustetWlllSton .'near the disputed Spratly Islands" .dressing. the maritime .•disputes Churchill, said: "It's-better toJaw. . Jocatedinthe '.West Philippine intheregioIl,. ...•..... ;.jaw.jliw thantowar, •. wan": .' . ·.··Sea,·•./.·••. war, ·.·.····.·i·.'.' . During the •. ·.rect:rltlyconcluded . . Manila)Odgedaprote.<;twith ·M'iIitary0fficialssaidtbejoint .Ase sUlt1111ifl1leetinginCamChinliMonday, .accusing Chinese: .exercises,~adnothingto ,4oi",ith bodia,MtA:quin0.insisted .that ,ships and aircraft of harassingthe<th~ Scarborou,ghShoals~?otf .•••..•.•.• sholl1d not-be part of the . China :'. JYStiranggani •. Philippine-reg-' '. ....A1soonMopday,JhePre.sident M a .•tellDltodrliftthe Code ?fCoriduct •.·istered.boat .:doing •.. archaeological .•• 'saidhe.was •..ikelytoappoint·.a·· ... ontheSt>llthChinaS&L •• ..··.·.: •l• . ' ···.·i research in the area, .. ....< > < 'new alllbassadorJoShinaafter<Thecode,whith\Vinbeabind~ ."''ThePhllippmesdernandedthat' •... busirieSsmartpomingoLeewas· ingpactamongthel0-mernber. the Chinese ships and aircraft cease ••.• bypassedthricebytbe.Conu:nis-s1atesoftheA-s~ari'wiUgovem the·..barassmetns ·.of. '.andfiy",bys;sioll0n.~ppoin~entS·.·...i.i •....•...•.••..... ·.· ••. ·.:narititnetertltoriill disputes with- .. overMJY. .Saranggant.soithafthe ..·..··· ·Illtheregion,····.··.·.·.·.iii·.·····ii··.·········.····· · boatanditscrewcancomplete.its.;atn~~s~or'.skil1ed"ien9ughto •.. ·.1'hei·Philippines •• and/Chiria .. work,"said Foreign Aftltirs.·spoke~ '....• steel'·.thebilateralre1~tions· •• ··be-o.aside,the()tllercoUntriesdaim'. .man RiiuIHemandez. •...••.••.•••. i.' tweenthePhilippittes<lll4Chiriaing 'i< . thewholeorpartsoftheWest . • .·"AnyattemptedactonbyChi· '..·.atid.address sticky issues .•uchas.. Philippine .SeaateMalaysia;Viet~ s nese ships oraircraft against the ..the recent standoff in the Scarbor-. nam.Bruneiat1draiW'art~J()yce M~'YSarangganiwilllJeconsid... ·oughShoaL· ... " ·.•.•.. ...PangcoPaiiares,withAP'"

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' ·.agross· .violation of its national laws and' of intero.atiori.a.llaw"" ..'. .. Ahigb~tarikingfuilitatyofficial on Monday said the situatipnin the SCarborough Shoal remained .'unstable because the two Chineseves- . sels refused to leave the area after eight Chirtesefishingboatii escaped with their lootof giant dams; coralsandother.endangeredmari-


Mi'.Aquitlosaid wheilaskedif hewasinclinedto uominatean ambassador to Bei- . jingother than Lee; .: The President said his administrationhadtwo missioos:to deescalatetheterisionswitliCmna and to profectthecountry'SS()V.·ereigrityand patrimony, ..•.•....•...•.•...••.....•.•... ..•."VVehave been ready to protect



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LtGoo.Al1.thony A.1cantarasaidoUf capability. But again;lappeal a second Philippine Coast Guard to you [riot to escalate the situasbiparrivedfnthe.area to resllpply . tion]," Mr. Aquino said. , the first, whicharrlvesThursday.i· ''Even in ..boxing we would "Weare continuouslymonitor- lose.There are Llbmion Chinese ing the .situatioIim the area!' he and we are orily95milJioh:What said,adding .•hattheGrp.gOriOider( .•. t ~9ulgYfe.·.gainif"'eescalatethe
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i-:rApril 2012

Page. _.:~__

Naval standoff ng 'Pinas at China, patuloy po rin
Nauna nanginiulat na humupa na ang isang Hnggong naval standoff ng Pilipinas at China sa Panatag Reef sa pinag-aagawang West Philippine Sea (South China Sea), ngunit . mistulang nagsimulang muIiang tensiyon makaraang magpadala ang China ng ikalawang barko at isang eroplano na sandalingnagpatrulya sa Iugar noong Linggo. Isa sa pinakaabalang rutang pangkaragatan sa mundo, naging sentro ng komprontasyon ang West Philippine Sea sa nakalipas na mga buwan sa pagpapalakas ng maritime forces ng mga gobyemong umaangkin sa isla. . Noong Abril 10, tinangka ng Philippine Navy na arestuhin ang ilang mangingisdang Chinese, na inakusahanng ilegaI na pagpasok at pangongolekta ng mga endangered coral, taklobo at pating sa Panatag Reef 0 Scarborough Shoal malapit sa Zambales, Dumating ang dalawang {DFA)Secretary Albert del Rosario. surveillance vessel ng gobyemong "The stalemate remains," sinabi Chinese at pinigilan ang pagdakip, na noong Unggo ni DFASpokesmanRaul nagbunsod ng standoff. . Hernandez. Ayon sa mga opisyalng China, Patuloy na nakikipag-usap ang sandaJing umistasyon ang .mga DFA sa China upang tuluyan nang mangingisdang Chinese sa isla, na matuldukan ang standoff, ayon kay iginigiit ng China na teritoryo nito, dahil Hernandez. sa masamangpanahon.ngunitra-harass Ayon naman kay Carlyle Thayer, umanosilangPhilippineNavy. eksperto sa usapinsa West Philippine Saglit na nilisan ng BRP Gregorio Sea mula sa University of New South del Pilar ng Philippine Navy ang isla at Wales sa Australia, ang standoff ay humalili ang barko ng Philippine Coast senyales na tunay na kailangan na ang Guard (peG). ' epektibong arrangement sa pagitan ng Noong Biyemes, tuluyang umalis .. China, Pilipinasat iba pang claimant sa sa isla angwalong bangkang pangisda isla paramaiwasanang alitan. ng China, tangay ang mga kinolektang Ang nasabing kasunduan, ayon endangered species, at iniulat na kay Thayer, ay maaaring idetaIye natapos na ang standoff. . sa panukalang "code of conduct" Ngunit nagpadalang. muli ng na kinukumpleto ng Association of ikalawang surveillance ship ang China Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), na noong Sabado, kasama ang isang kabilang sa 10 miyembro ang Pilipinas, Chinese aircraft, na lumipad noong China at dalawa pang bansang Linggo sa ibabaw ng barko ng PCG, umaangkin sa isla. ayonkay Department of Foreign Affairs Associated Press


_. April f



.;4-)f£ !\


Are Army, police now threats to UP students?
THEREIS an established trend ofUniversity of the Philippines students being accosted, harassed and attacked by law enforcers. Most recently, suspected military elements attempted to involve two UP Manila students in a criminal case filed against the father of one of the students. Eight young photographers from UP LosBanos and two community development students from UP Dillman were also threatened and harassed by military personnel during their separate community immersion. UP had no choice but to place itself squarely on the side of the students. It has to protect all UP students who are required at-some point of their study in UP to go out into the communities and serve. The systematic vilification and persecution of our students threaten our lives and liberties-we have two students missing and two in jail, all thanks to the military's overzealous adherence to the counterinsurgency program. The two deaths may even have been the result of criminal collusion, corruption and ineffective police action, The UP student regent demands the reconvening of the joint monitoring group (JMG), created in 1989, which delineates the authority of the Department of National Defense and the UP . administration over UP campuses and students. In several documents we have agreed to: • Disallow the establishment of military and police detachments inside campuses, • Ban operations and deployment of military, police or Cafgu forces in campuses. • Require proper notification in case of arrest, detention or custodial investigation of any UP. student, faculty, or personnel. It is hoped that with thisJMG, UP can refocus on social and economic issues. UP students, past and present, have always been instrumental in exposing and, at most times, opposing, what is wrong with the system. Don't persecute UP students when we do something we ought to do for the country. UP student regent, kris~Conti@gmall.oom


Page: \'1April2012



ShoOling Straight

should never have left!
I spent the weekend talking to a lot of friends and yes, including military men and police who, all agreed with what we wrote last Saturday, that the BRP Gregorio del Pilar should have stayed in the Scarborough Shoal during tha t confrontation with the Chinese fishing boats and the Chinese Navy. What we have here isa situation where for many years the Philippine Navy had no naval vessel to be proud of ... but now that we've got that Hamilton Class Coast Guard Cutter from the US... we thought we now had a vessel that could match other foreign naval ships. Alas the Philippine Navy's flagship made a hasty retreat when confronted with a less superior force. As of press time, we haven't heard a peep from Vice-Admiral Alexander Pama, who gave us the flimsiest excuse why he ordered the BRP Gregorio del Pilar to pull outof the Scarborough ShoaL.. because the crew needed food and the ship needed fueL My military friends told me that when you are hungry inside a foxhole with the enemy surrounding you ... you stay hungry. In fairness to the crew of the BRP Gregorio del Pilar, I'm sure those Navy guys would have wanted to stay on. But someone ordered them to back off! My friends from the Philippine National Police (PNP) told me that if you are a Station Commander and the NPAs raid your station, you should stay and fight as leaving the station is considered an act of cowardice and' you get slapped with administrative sanctions. Perhaps the Armed Forces of the Philippines (APP) which includes the Philippine Navy has a different rules of engagement... but in my book, ordering the BRP Gregorio del Pilar was a total retreat. .. it dishonors the name of the late Gen. Gregorio del Pilar. Lest you have already forgotten, on Dec. 2, 1899,Gen. Gregorio del Pilar was ordered to lead 60 Filipino soldiers to act as the rear guard for Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo who was being pursued by the Texas Regiment of Col. Peyton March. This was the famous Battle of Tirad Pass, where Gen. del Pilar held his ground and died fighting the Ameri-' cans, giving Gen. Aguinaldo a chance to get away to his hideaway. The BRP Gregorio del Pilar was named after a General who kept his ground and died fighting for it! 'What baffles me is we have not heard a peep from our usual critics in the Senate. 1 would have thought that Sen. Antonio Trillanes or Sen. Gringo Honasan would have issued statements by now ... or better, call for an investigation why the Philippine Navy flagship was ordered to retreat from that potential confrontation? ' In fairness to Vice-Admiral. Alexander Pama, I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps someone higher than him ordered the BRP Gregorio del Pilar to withdraw from Scarborough Shoal? If this is true, may we then ask the good Admiral whether it wasPresident Aquino? I'm asking this question because I got a lot of text messages telling me that I was barking at the wrong person ... as Vice-Admiral Pama gets orders from higher ups. I will just wait for any reply coming from the Philippine Navy on whether the Commander-in-alief ordered that retreat? Meanwhile, I got an e-mail from no less than Mr. Zhang Hua, spokesperson of Political Section of the Chinese Embassy. Although I already replied to his e-mail, allow me to reprint it here. "Dear Mr. Avila, Your articles on the STAR brought to my attention, but I can not agree with some of the basic facts in it. For your reference, please go to the / ph. ch in a-em bass y. or g] eng/ sgd t/ t922594.htm. I would be pleased to discuss with you any of your interest in this regard. Thank you and have a nice weekend. Zhang Hua, Spokesperson, Political Section of Chinese Embassy." I opened this website and it gives the historical account from the Chinese viewpoint. .. that on October 1947 the Chinese government named the South China Sea ,Islands, including Scarborough Shoal as part of Zhongsha Islands which were later renamed Huangyan , Island under the administration of China's Guangdong Province ... all of which happened before the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea went into force. This 'el no. (02) 892·1693, Local: 5287, 5295 means that the Philippines must pursue a strong diplomatic effort to solve this problem.
-28Turn to Page 14

PhlNavy flagship

BeforeTfo.rgetalIoYVlnefo.reITIind.····YOU.Ofabotderdispute between the Chinese Navy .and the Viet11amesetroopsinthe disputedParacelIslands,yvherescmesofoumumbered Vietnamese -soldiers' were killed ..n that sea battle for sovereignty i over those small disputedislands,TheVietnamesemayhave Iostthat battle .against .theq'lirtese but it .gave the. Chinese an idea that the Vietnamese will fightfortheir islands.even against superior force'VVhatabo,-:tusFilipinos? Are we going tose~a repeat of that hastyretreat in ScarboroughShoaland to hellwith oursoyere. ign~?WeaIready lostSabahto the M alaysians., .are ... wegomg to give Up the Scarborough shoal as well?





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pzcom.comol'vsbobita@gmail,com.His through .wivw, phileia r:com, .

For .e-mail •.• re~pol1Se.stothi$attic1elwritetovsbobita@m~.. columnscanbe accessed

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April 2012

.Are you going to Scarborough Fair (Shoal)?
piece very 1""HlS starts with the that soothing phrase from meaningful and popular folk song of thee70's by two of the greatest folk singers and composers Paul Simon and the other half of the duo Art Garfunkel, "Areyou going to Scarborough Fair!" The song aptly depicted as an anti-war song, seems to augur well with the current state of affairs, countries Philippines and China are into right now. Perhaps, trying to express the group's anti-war sentiments at that time, the song that was composed by Paul Simon was meant to remind the government ofU .S. who was into war with Vietnam, that nothing can be gained from such a gory skirmish.The opus tries to emphasize tlJ.atsoldiers are fighting for a cause that they have long ago forgotten and currently into it for reasons not really dear to them. .. Although, the current conflict conditions between Philippines and China vary in nature, the possibility of protracted differences may create diplomatic strain which may result into an escalation of an "event' we never would imagine happening in this modem time. Although both claimant countries have their reasons for such actions, they should hold their horses until the time that a
• WoI





_..;.._1tr __

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more diplomatic solution is de'vised. These should be done for a much noble end of ·PEACE." In this situation where regional peace and diplomatic relationship is at stake, each country should set aside principle for a much superior and righteous purpose of World PEACE. At the outset, it seems that China is overpowering in all areas of concern if it decides to antagonize the Philippines. Economically,it is adeveloped and perhaps the richest economy, pound for pound. A great percentage of goods and resources that we utilized and are still utilizing are made in China and therefore if it decides to impose an economic embargo on our country, we just don't know where we are going to get replacements for these Chinamade products and raw materials. Chinese local residents are up and

about in their dominance oflocal '.businesses here in OUf country. About ninety percent of mammoth companies in the philippines are Chinese owned or are of Chinese-descent, and if they de" cide to pull out because of diplomatic row then how do we go through our daily life and survive in the short-run.espedally those dependent on Chinese firms for their job and income? As far as military strength is concerned, China no doubt possesses the more superior firepower compared to our country. In a-study provided by Global, China is ranked No.3 in terms of military strength next the United States and Russia while Philippines is ranked number 23 in a ranking of 50 countries of the world. Suffice it to say, if we are going to look at the "tale of the tape" of the two protagonists, it is no contest, right from the very start in favor of China. Of course this is not trying to submit ourselves to the whims and caprices of the "intruding" country, but at the end of the day, it is still a case of who is more superior not only economically and politically but more of militarily. Otherwise without these superior advantages, China won't dare to pursue such a claim

that they believe does not belong to them whether geographically and historically. The call for the United States to intervene in the ongoing conflict warrants a closer look and exami'nation by our government considering that it may be perceived by China as it provocativeact meant to challenge its strength. As such, aggressive actions that may lead to a full blown conflict may explode which could spells disaster on two countries, more so with a financially tight economy like the Philippines. .The government with its vast resources cannot ignore the' accompanying dilemma this political conflict may bring. This predicament is not simply solved by . ignoring or isolating the opposing side to show your exasperation, but it is more than meets the eye. The Philippine government should approach the problem soberly. We cannot confront the actions of China in a manner outside of the diplomatic mode lest it becomes offensive in character. An entry of a third country may be perceived as inciting armed actions which may be critical that may spell catastrophe for our country. The government can resolve the problem all by its lone self. With ,

Global view
a government Ieaderthat is internationally acclaimed and acknowledged, there is no way by which the problem cannot be settled affably.There should be no compromise for PEACE! Aswhat Martin Luther King said "PEACE is not merely a distant goal that we seek but a means by which we arrive at that goal."

"Are you going to Scarboroughi-a}( Parsley,sage, rosemary and thyme Rememberme to one who livesthere She once was a true love of mine."
Simon & Garfunkel

(For comments email: doc.ejlopez with cc to: opinion@ manilatimes. net).




the credit of both Philippine and Chinese diplomats, the tense situation in the Scarborough islets has been defused for now. But, of course, th~ problem persists. How it will be resolved is something that no one can foretell at this time. Given the stated position of each side on the ownership of the islets, there is very little chance the problem will be resolved soon. So, back to the status quo. ...There is, however, no denying the fact that based on international law, the islets belong to the Philippines. They are within the 200mile Exclusive Economic Zone of the coun-



Thl1 N.a,,"-tnn.::tl



frnow,bul ...
'Let's leave the matter to . the diplomats . Kibitzers, at this time, should not be heard.'

try. China's claim that ancient maps show that they belong to her just doesn't hold water. It is also a good thing that no one in the Aquino government advocated seeking US help during the standoff with China - except his pirated D'Vfr-loving.polirical adviser Ronald Llamas. Senator Gringo Honasan also wants US help. Did he not notice how eerily silent the US was during the whole incident? Wasn't that enough for him to realize that the US does not and would never want to clash with China over the West Philippine Sea dispute

unless her own interests are directly threatened? Honasan also said we should bring the matter up to the United Nations. He said: "Malay natin baka mag decide aug UN Security Council na magpadala ng observer group sa Scarborough shoals, then they might decide to intervene." How naive, He obviously does not know or, to be kind, forgets that China is a vetowielding member of the Security Council. Let's leave the matter to the diplomats. Kibitzers, at this time, should not be heard.



·•·•••..··.·····.·.·OFFteeOF·THE.·ARMV.·CHtEf.·Pl.JBl.IC •• •·•· · ·AFFA.IRs·:..Efi1ail~dd:·.oa.6pa2hpa@yati06.col1t·· ... Tel··11t,.(02)·.892.16~3,·Local:5287,··5295·.···· • ....





















D April


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. The Chinese embassy prepared its own set of questions, with answers However, the Philippine side hasn't withdrawn its ships. As nooided by its spokesman, on the latest incidents in the South China Sea of 2 pm of April 16,there were still boats remaining at that area, I11dsent a copy to The STAR. The Q& A is reproduced here verbatim: Unexpectedly, an archaeological vessel was found in the lagoon conducting salvage archaeology, this infringes on China's rights, and violates relevant international conventions. These above activities by the Philippine side raised further grave concerns of the Chinese side on the situation there. 1. Q: How did Huangyan Island Incident Happen? ' 4. Q: The Philippine side said a Chinese surveillance ship A: Huangyan Island area has been the traditional fishing ground had harassed a: Phlippine-registerad archeologial vessel with )£ Chmese fishermen for generations. Twelve Chinese fishing boats 9French nationals on aboard. What's your comment? ' '{ere harassed by a Philippine Navy ship in the lagoon of Huang: A: There is, indeed, an ancient Chinese wreck ship in Huaran Island in the morning of April 10. The Chinese side lodged ngyan Island area, of which China has the ownership, In accorepresentations with the Philippine side. dance with relevant international conventions and Chinese laws, 2. Q: What's your comment on the Philippines' claim on the it is illegal to conduct salvage activities without the permission .overeignty of Huangyan Island? , of the Chinese goverrunent. urge the archaeological vessel . A: Huangyan Island is China's territory. It is China that first leave the area immediately. liscovered this island, gave it the name, incorporated it into its 5. Q: The Philippine side asserted that there arrived anotherritory, and exercised juristiction over it. . . er Chinese surveillance ship in Huangyan Island area on April The Philippine territory is set by a series of international trea- 14th, which interpreted that China is taking actions to agies, including the Treaty of Paris (1898), The Treaty of Washington gregate the situation. What's Your comment? 1900) and the Treaty with Great Britain (1930), none of which ever A: The Chinese public service vessels are conducting legitieferred to Huangyan Island or included this island into its territory. mate patrols for law enforcement in Huangyan Island area, The Jntil1997; the Philippine side has never disputed China's juristic- incident is resulted from the infringement by the Philippine ion of and development on Huangyan Island. On the other hand, Navy Flagship Gregorio del Pilar, and the Philippines' coast Turn to Page 4 guard vessels still remain there. In this context, the Chinese public service vessels have to stay there to watch out the situ a. tion. We urge the Philippine side to withdraw all of their vesFrom Page 1 , sels from Huangyan Island area, and restore peace and stability there. the Philippines indicated on a number of occasionsthat Hua6. Q: What's_your comment on the reports that the Philipngyan Island was beyond its territory. ' pine side has found endangered maritime spicies in the Chi.. &ccor~iing totheintema:aonallav,:,incJw;;lin~~nitad ~ a~ion~ nese fishing boats? ConVentIOn on the Law of theSea ,UNCLOSl)f'tke·Phlhpmes A: In protecting the endangered maritime spicies, the Chiclaim of the [uristicrion rights and sovereignty:'i'ightsbver Huanese side has always educated its fishermen to abide by ErIengyan Island with the arguments of Exclusive Economic Zone vant Chinese and international laws and regulations, The rele(EEZ) is groundless. UNCLOS allows coastal states to claim a vantChinese authorities will, as always, administer, investigate, 200-nautical-mile EEZ, but coastal states have no rights to inand prosecute any violations in accordance with above-menfringe on the inherent territory and sovereignty of o.ther countioned laws. tries. The Philippines asserts that Huangyan Island IS closer-to 7. Q: How-do you think the situation will develop? its territory, but fact geographical proximity" has long been A: Departing from our good will of developing friendly redismissed by the international law and practice as the principle lations with the' Philippines, we are ready to engage in further of the solution of territory ownership. , discussions with the Philippine side and try our best to settle 3. Q: What is China's stance on this incident? What is the the incident properly, situation right now? A: The Chinese side holds that peace and stability should be maintained at Huangyan Island area, with fishing undisturbed. China and the Philippines have differences over the sovereignty of Huangyan Island, but after sev~ral rounds <:f consultations, both sides agreed not do anything to complicate or aggravate the situation .. Since this incident happened, the Chinese side has been in contacts with the Philippine officials at various levels including Foreign Secretary Del Rosario both in Beijing and Manila. Both sides agreed to' settle the incident through diplomatic means. In view of the complex situation in that area, which involved Navy ship; public service vessels, and fishing boats, China's fishing boats left on April 13 in order to help defuse the situation.

Chinese embassy Q&A·



Chinese embassy




- Tel no. (02) 892-1693, Local: 5287,5295