"One threatens our health, the other threatens our security and sovereignty."
Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddyboy Locsin says that the Department of Foreign Affairs will continue filing diplomatic protests against the incursion of hundreds of Chinese militia fishing boats at the Julian Felipe Reef within the Exclusive Economic Zone.
Santa Banana, but the problem is that China will continue to ignore those diplomatic protests as it has done with so many other diplomatic protests. That, to me, is the problem.
My gulay, dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic is bad enough. Now comes another problem from China, eating away at the West Philippine Sea. This virus is, I think, as bad as or even worse than the COVID-19 pandemic. It threatens our security and sovereignty!
The Chinese incursion into the Julian Felipe Reef comes at a time when all the energies of the Philippine government should be focused on COVID-19. The country is desperately trying to meet the challenge of a pandemic.
I can no longer remember how many other diplomatic protests have been filed against the Chinese incursion on the West Philippine. Sure, we won our case with the Permanent Court of Arbitration, which dismissed China’s nine-dash claim on the disputed territory. There is also the United National Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). But does China President Xi Jinping care, knowing that the Philippines is a poor country that cannot afford to go to war against it?
I am afraid that at the rate of Chinese incursions into the West Philippine Sea, someday there might just be an invasion.
The bullying, to my mind, is more dangerous than the coronavirus because there’s nothing we can do about it. Sure, the United States and the Philippines have the 1951 MDT or Mutual Defense Treaty where an action against the Philippines is considered an act of war on the United States. But will the US go to war against China on this issue?
What can we do? I hate to say it, but it looks like all we can do is just to accept what China is doing. President Duterte has pivoted to China, and China has been bullying us no end.
So what will the government do? There must be something, like filing a protest before the United Nations. This is what the UN is for, after all. This act would make the issue a multi-lateral one. We must do something before China takes over the whole country!
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I think our country has reached the limit in connection to the COVID-19 pandemic. We must do something drastic.
It’s a desperate and pitiful situation so much so that some infected COVID-19 patients even have to rely on that medicine good for removing fleas of dogs – ivermectin. Some say that ivermectin is a cure against COVID-19.
Have we come to that desperate point?
It has been said that the surge of COVID-19 pandemic cases is due to the efforts to balance our health and safety with the need to jumpstart the economy, and also due to the various variants now in the country.
I say there is another cause – the incompetence of people under Duterte.
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News has been floating around on Facebook that President Duterte is not well, that’s the reason why has cut down on his appointments and activities. Duterte at 76 years old is an old man. He cannot deny this.
What surprises me though is that excuse that some members of the Presidential Security Group have been stricken with coronavirus, even as they insist they are not among his close-in security. This, Palace insiders say, makes it difficult for Duterte to attend his activities.
But how can this happen when there were reports that members of the PSG were already inoculated with the Sinovac vaccine, smuggled from China, last year? No less than the commander of the PSG, Brig. Gen. Jesus Durante, confirmed this.
So, which is which?
I don’t know why Malacanang is so sensitive every time there are reports that the President is not well. All the Palace should do is to issue medical bulletins about the President’s health.
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I commend my good friend Bienvenido Tantoco for reaching the age of 100 years. I also commend him for making Rustan’s Department store what it is today. Congratulations, Benny.