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PH not vulnerable to China military attack, says former SolGen

  The Philippines does not have to go to war and it will not be vulnerable to an attack by China even if Filipinos assert their rights in the West Philippine Sea, according to former Solicitor General Florin Hilbay.   The Philippines, however, faces the risk of losing its claims in the sea altogether by doing nothing, Hilbay said on Tuesday.   "The President keeps on saying he does not want to go to war. But neither is China. The President is sounding the alarm, but it seems he is the only one alarmed by it," he said.   Not vulnerable to attack   Despite having a weak military, the Philippines cannot be considered vulnerable to foreign ...Keep on reading: PH not vulnerable to China military attack, says former SolGen.....»»

Category: newsSource: inquirer inquirerJun 14th, 2018

PLA navy tests ship-borne choppers in SChina Sea

A People’s Liberation Army (PLA) navy flotilla recently conducted live-fire drills for ship-borne helicopters in the South China Sea to test attacking targets at sea, with a military expert saying that the exercises show an improvement in the PLA’s ability to attack hostile ships. Two helicopters flew at a low altitude to the target area [...] The post PLA navy tests ship-borne choppers in SChina Sea appeared first on The Manila Times Online......»»

Category: newsSource:  manilatimes_netRelated NewsMay 16th, 2018

Duterte: Chinese bases on disputed sea were built as shield from possible US attack

By Arjay L. Balinbin BEIJING’S military bases in the disputed South China Sea were built to defend China against any attack by the United States, President Rodrigo R. Duterte said. “The Chinese bases are not intended for us. The contending ideological powers of the world or the geopolitics has greatly changed. [The bases] are really […] The post Duterte: Chinese bases on disputed sea were built as shield from possible US attack appeared first on BusinessWorld......»»

Category: newsSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsFeb 19th, 2018

‘Grand Deception’ by Jun Ledesma

Letters From Davao: WHEN RAPPLER through its President, Maria Ressa, was caught trifling with an important tenet in the Philippine constitution that mandates that Philippine media should be 100% owned by Filipinos the Securities and Exchange Commission ordered it closed. Rappler was parading like it is wholly owned by Filipinos but turned out it accepted investment from Omidyar Network (ON) which is known for its notoriety in destabilizing heads of state that are not docile to America. It tried deception by claiming that the Philippine Deposit Receipts it issued to ON money was for philanthropic contribution. The attempt dragged them deeper in shit as PDRs are actually commercial instruments. When this trick did not work, Ressa again tried another act this time claiming that Omidyar signed a waiver on its veto power. Again this did not pass scrutiny of the SEC because the said waiver was discovered to be just a scrap of paper as the document was not notarized.  Running out of deceptive tricks Ma. Ressa went berserk when she was served the closure order and went about town crying her freedom is being curtailed by Pres. Rodrigo Duterte no less. Her partner Pia Ranada did the same screaming she will be jailed by Duterte’s military. The grandstanding, it was obvious, was to stonewall the criminal violation they committed and to paint Rappler and its staff headed by Ressa as victims of oppression and dictatorial regime of Duterte. Contrary to its claim that they have lost their freedom of expression, more than ever Rappler had increased the crescendo of its unfettered attack on no less than the President Duterte himself. Ressa spearheaded a Black Friday movement supported by a handful of students from where else by the University of the Philippines campus and the usual garrulous but moribund Liberal Party stalwarts headed by VP Leni Robredo. They were joined in by UN Rapporteur Agnes Callamard and her local counterpart Chito Gascon in denouncing the Duterte government for curtailing the freedom of the press. Other foreign-funded media outfits joined the fray for obvious reason.  Theirs is a cacophony of ridiculous chants. Robredo warned that the closure of Rappler is a symptom of a dark future of the country. The juvenile delinquents in the UP campus joined pipsqueak assemblies with screaming placards denouncing Pres. Duterte and his “malignant forces that continue to peddle lies to justify their tyranny and dictatorship”.  They cut classes to face the TV cameras and klieg lights unmindful of yet another spectacular grade the survey firms Social Weather Station and Pulse Asia showing an “excellent” grade on the sustained trust and popularity of the nation on Duterte which they had been flagellating no end.  No one seems to mind their issue about tyranny and dictatorship as the World Bank grudgingly declared that “DDS killed democracy in the Philippines but they haven’t killed the country’s vibrant economy”.  Forbes, an international business magazine, likewise quoted WB on its Global Economic Prospects, which asserts that “Duterte Philippines is the 10th fastest growing economy in the world”.  The statistics is a slap on the face of VP Robredo who remains to be an incurable pessimist despite the figures that cannot lie. She continues to see the future of the Philippines in dark glasses forgetting that she is a Vice President and therefore should have celebrated with the rest for the gains that the country achieved. For her part, Maria Ressa simply ignored what Forbes and WB declared.  Maybe out of outrage that the Robredo seemed to be out of sync and blinded by sheer politicking and negativism, UP Political Science professor and political analyst, Clarita Carlos,  made a five-worded message to The Vice President thus: “President Duterte moves the Philippines forward”. To those who denigrate Duterte from cutting the country’s umbilical cord to America, Professor Carlos had this to say. “Duterte has moved the Philippines away from the usual foreign policy and in turn ‘defined national interest’ by tracking his own way of foreign policy”. She admired Duterte for his political guts and courage.  It is indeed pathetic that while the Philippines rise several notches higher in political and economic arena the opposition and the foreign-aided media outfits shamelessly continue to belittle these achievements. It is no small feat that Philippines came out stronger in economic growth than China in the 3rd quarter of 2017. On the 4th quarter moreover China rallied (6.9%) and landed on top of Asian countries followed by Vietnam (6.8) and Philippines 6.7%. The Philippines however has been growing more than 6% for nine consecutive quarters and that sustained growth is best among Asean nations. Any which way you look at it, that spells economic stability and investment grade for investors service firms like Moody’s and other international credit rating institutions. Cause and effect is a simple gauge to measure the impact of the tyranny and dictatorial regime that Rappler and its sympathizers have been accusing the Duterte regime. But as I always say, no one can quarrel with success especially when institutions of unquestionable stature put the positive figures across. Expect the economy to grow even faster in 2018 when infrastructure spending commences under the Duterte’s Build, Build, Build program. As we all know, the government had earmarked P8.4-trillion to achieve the mega infrastructure projects comprising of railways, highways and bridges, irrigation’s, airports and seaports to name a few. The job opportunities that these programs will generate are equally mind-boggling. […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsFeb 1st, 2018

Could North Korean, US threats of destruction cause an accidental war? – CNN News

The war of words between North Korea and the United States could be pushing the region closer to the brink of an accidental conflict. While neither country is outwardly moving towards an actual war footing, military displays of power, mixed with threats and counter threats may result in an ugly outcome, Stratfor Vice President of Strategic Analysis Rodger Baker told CNN. &'8220;The North Koreans assume that the threats will be enough to restrain US action but the US might be thinking the same thing, so you end up in a situation where a provocation from one side is seen by the other as an actual move towards war,&'8221; he said. North Korea's Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho announced on Monday that US President Donald Trump had &'8220;declared a war&'8221; on his country by tweeting that North Korea &'8220;won't be around much longer.&'8221; Ri's interpretation of Trump's tweet was roundly dismissed by the White House later that day. The South Korean government has been desperately calling for calm on both sides, as the country's citizens would be among the first to suffer in any war. Speaking in Washington on Monday, South Korea's Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said the United States has to help to reduce tensions on the peninsula. &'8220;It is very likely that North Korea will conduct further provocations,&'8221; she said. &'8220;It is imperative that we, Korea and the US together, manage the situation &' in order to prevent further escalation of tensions or any kind of accidental military clashes which can quickly go out of control.&'8221; Foreign Minister Ri told reporters Monday North Korea would shoot down any US bombers which flew near the Korean Peninsula, even if they didn't enter North Korea's airspace. &'8220;In light of the declaration of war by Trump, all options will be on the operating table of the Supreme leadership of DPRK,&'8221; Ri said, according to his official English translator. White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders was quick to respond, saying Monday the US had not declared war and any suggestion along those lines was &'8220;absurd.&'8221; Euan Graham, director of the International Security Program at Sydney's Lowy Institute, said while the physical threat of war had not increased, every unfulfilled threat from the US did damage to its international position. &'8220;When threats are made and not followed through US credibility suffers both in the eyes of North Korea and its allies,&'8221; Graham said. &'8220;The US is very unlikely to engage in a preventative war against North Korea, so it's more the risk of stumbling into this because the North Koreans decide they have to escalate or they believe something US is doing is a preventative strike or a decapitation attack (against the leadership).&'8221; Over the weekend, North Korea moved airplanes and boosted defenses on its east coast, South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported Tuesday, quoting intelligence agencies. It followed a flyover by US bombers close to North Korea on Saturday. US B-1B bombers from Guam flew in international airspace over waters east of North Korea, according to the Pentagon, a move they said underscored the seriousness of Pyongyang's &'8220;reckless behavior.&'8221; It was the furthest north of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), the area of land between North and South Korea, which US fighters or bombers had flown in the 21st Century, the Pentagon said. Stratfor's Baker said he was concerned any moves by North Korea to shadow US planes or to engage in displays of military might could lead to accidental conflict. &'8220;There haven't been many incidents where they've engaged in this sort of behavior so they don't know how to deal with each other in this situation, they don't know how to read the way that each side is acting, so you can get accidents and the North Koreans, again, they may overestimate their hand,&'8221; he said. But Baker added it was important to note that neither side had engaged in the large movement of troops or evacuation of civilians which would precipitate a full blown war. &'8220;We don't see the US taking action to rapidly reduce the number of civilians and non military personnel in South Korea &' at the same time, rhetoric is working to increase the potential of an accident.&'8221; The latest standoff between Washington and Pyongyang came as a North Korean Foreign Ministry official flew to Moscow to meet with a representative of the Russian government. According to state media KCNA, director general at the Foreign Ministry's North American Department Choe Son Hui left for Moscow on Monday. She'll meet with Oleg Burmistrov, a &'8220;roving ambassador&'8221; with Russia's Foreign Ministry. The meeting comes amid cooling relations between Pyongyang and Beijing, with China's Ministry of Commerce announcing on Saturday it would immediately restrict petroleum exports to North Korea in line with UN sanctions. &'8220;Russia has been a supplier of petroleum products either directly or not paying attention to what it's own countries are doing in regard to North Korea,&'8221; Baker said. The latest round of sanctions, agreed to on September 11, were reportedly amended by the US after it became clear Russia and China wouldn't allow stronger restrictions. &'8220;Russia is a potential helpful card for the North Koreans to use particularly if they're worried that China is going to get more hostile and especially as secondary sanctions (from the US) come into play,&'8221; Graham said.(&'8220;Russia is a potential helpful card for the North Koreans to use particularly if they're worried that China is going to [&'].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsSep 26th, 2017

ISIS militants, hostages escape Marawi mosque

MARAWI CITY – Dozens of local ISIS militants and their hostages managed to escape undetected from a mosque they used to attack security forces in the besieged city of Marawi.  The daring escape was only discovered after troops managed to advance and eventually recaptured the mosque from militants on Thursday hours before President Rodrigo Duterte’s visit to Marawi. The military trumpeted the “liberation” of the mosque, but it did not say how ISIS fighters and their captives managed to escape from thousands of troops who surrounded Marawi, and spy planes and drones monitoring the siege since May 23.  The fate of the hostages, including a Catholic priest and church workers, remains unknown.  Duterte, wearing a Kevlar helmet and a bullet-proof vest, inspected troops in the battlefront and spoke to them. “The President also congratulated the troops for defending Marawi from terror elements and for successfully retaking the Islamic Center yesterday, a structure that was maintained as the Daesh-inspired terrorist group's command and control for the longest time before it was retaken,” said Army Captain Jo-ann Petinglay, a spokeswoman for the Western Mindanao Command.  It was his 3rd visit to Marawi since the fighting began when militants occupied the city in an effort to put up an Islamic province in the restive region. Security officials also briefed Duterte on the progress of the military operations against the militants.  In his talk with the soldiers, Duterte assured his full support to the military and police forces fighting ISIS. “I would like to reiterate this, I will never abandon you as long as you are doing the right thing. This would include fighting against the terrorists groups, the drug lords or the common criminals as long as you are doing your sworn duty to enforce the law and protect the republic. Let me emphasize however that you must do your job in accordance with the law,” he said.  Duterte was accompanied by National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon, Defense Undersecretary Cesar Yano, Armed Forces Chief of Staff General Eduardo Ano and Army Chief Lieutenant General Glorioso Miranda.  Oust Duterte  His visit to the battlefield came days after disgruntled soldiers and policemen who are members of a shadowy group called Patriotic and Democratic Movement or PADEM called for the ouster of Duterte. They accused Duterte of treating the military and police as his private armies and for betraying and violating public trust and cited 10 reasons to call for his ouster. The group also urged Filipinos to join PADEM in condemning and fighting Duterte and his administration and to stage mass actions and demand the President’s ouster. In a manifesto, Antonio Bonifacio, who claimed to be PADEM’s spokesman, called on members of the military and police to also join the people in demanding Duterte’s resignation and also his administration. It said the group is working for the withdrawal military and police support for Duterte.  “We urge all Filipinos as individuals and as groups in whatever social sector, field, institution or organization to exercise their right of assembly and expression to undertake mass actions demanding the ouster of Duterte and his administration. We call on our fellow officers and members of the AFP and the PNP to join the people in demanding the resignation or ouster of Duterte and his administration.” “We pledge to work for the withdrawal of military and police support for Duterte and his administration in conjunction with mass mobilization of the Filipino people in millions to manifest their demand for the resignation or ouster of Duterte and his administration. Upon the change of administration, we pledge to follow the principle of civilian supremacy and support a new civilian administration, in accordance with the 1987 Constitution and the rule of law,” the manifesto, released by Bonifacio – believed to be a nom de guerre – said. PADEM also condemned and holds accountable for gross crimes in betrayal of public trust and in violation of national sovereignty and democratic rights of the Filipino people. It cited the following reasons as alleged crimes of Duterte:   Treating the AFP and the PNP as these were his private armies and practising favoritism and violating professional and service standards in the promotion and assignment of officers; Corrupting the PNP and the AFP with a system of monetary awards for the extrajudicial killing of alleged illegal drug users and of NPA suspects; Condoning and protecting top-level illegal drug lords; Emboldening/inciting police officers to engage in extrajudicial killings of poor suspected illegal drug users and pushers by publicly telling officers to plant evidence and by guaranteeing their pardon and promotion in case of conviction; Aggravating corruption in government and criminality through the collusion of Duterte trustees and crime syndicates; Allowing China to occupy maritime features in the West Philippine Sea and to violate Philippine sovereign rights upheld by decision of the Arbitral Tribunal in accordance with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea; Bungling the operations in Marawi City and indiscriminately destroying lives and property through aerial bombings, artillery and mortar; Favoring certain Chinese businessmen and Duterte relatives and cronies in the award of projected infrastructure projects using loans from China; Betraying the sovereign rights of the Filipino people by making the Philippines a debt vassal of China and offering to China the oil and gas resources under the West Philippine Sea as collateral for Chinese loans; and Seeking to replace the partnership with the United States in matters [&'].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsAug 25th, 2017

Army foils NPA attack in N. Cotabato with air, ground assault

THE military said it has prevented a plot by communist rebels to harass Army and militia positions in the borders of North Cotabato and Davao del Sur by launching air and ground assaults on rebels’ positions Wednesday. “Clearing operations” are still ongoing in the mountains of Sitio New Alimodian, Barangay Banayal, Tulunan, North Cotabato, following […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated News2 hr. 59 min. ago

6 soldiers hurt by roadside bomb in North Cotabato town

An Army lieutenant and five of his soldiers were injured in a bomb attack by the New People’s Army in Magpet town in North Cotabato at past 1:00 p.m. on Thursday, the military said. Source link link: 6 soldiers hurt by roadside bomb in North Cotabato town.....»»

Category: newsSource:  manilainformerRelated News4 hr. 47 min. ago

US Congress wants continued Chinese exclusion from naval drills

A US Senate-passed bill authorizing military spending on its activities reiterated China's exclusion from a major American naval exercise, just weeks after the Pentagon disinvited Beijing from the drills that could potentially chill relations between the two powers......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated News5 hr. 46 min. ago

Show of force will earn us respect -- Gordon

SENATOR Richard Gordon yesterday called on the Philippine government to intensify its military capability in Panatag Shoal so that China would not look down on us as a pushover. Gordon, chair of Blue Ribbon Committee, said China belittles Filipinos' fishing rights "because we don't have a sort of deterrent force….....»»

Category: newsSource:  journalRelated NewsJun 17th, 2018

Duterte foes use ‘China issues’ to attack president

POLITICAL FOES of President Rodrigo Duterte continue to criticize him for his soft stance against Chinese occupation of islands being […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanaoexaminerRelated NewsJun 16th, 2018

Cayetano on landing of China plane: Nothing fishy about it

Foreign Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano on Friday said a Chinese military plane was given diplomatic clearance to land at an airport in Davao City after the military authorized it, contradicting an earlier statement by military officials that it was the other way around.   "It's nothing irregular. There's nothing fishy about it. It is something that countries do," Cayetano said in an interview with CNN Philippines.   In fact, he said the Philippines had extended the same accommodation to 243 US and 33 South Korean military aircraft.   Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said he learned of the presence of the Chinese military plane belatedly.---MARLON RAMOS ...Keep on reading: Cayetano on landing of China plane: Nothing fishy about it.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 16th, 2018

Senate panels to probe Duterte’s China policy

Two Senate committees will jointly hold a public hearing to determine how effective the country’s foreign policy is in the face of alarming developments in the West Philippine Sea, particularly China’s military buildup and its harassment of Filipino fishermen......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJun 15th, 2018

China carries out missile drills in South China Sea amid heightened tensions

BEIJING — China’s navy carried out drills in the South China Sea to simulate fending off an aerial attack, state media said on Friday, as China and the United States trade barbs over who is responsible for heightened tensions in the disputed waterways. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo expressed concern during a visit to […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  interaksyonRelated NewsJun 15th, 2018

Filipino fishermen want full access to lagoon at Panatag Shoal

IBA, Zambales --- Filipino fishermen on Thursday have urged the Philippine government to make an agreement with its Chinese counterpart to give them full access to the lagoon at Panatag Shoal (Scarborough Shoal) in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea). "Ang panawagan po namin sa Presidente magkaron ng agreement na payagan na po totally namin na ma-access namin yung kabuuan ng shoal kasi limited po ang aming galaw (We call upon the President to have a deal [with China] that would allow us to fully access the shoal because our moves in the area are limited)," said Rolly Bernal, president of Scarborough Fisherfolk Association. The military initiated a consultative dialogue with t...Keep on reading: Filipino fishermen want full access to lagoon at Panatag Shoal.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 14th, 2018

Report to US Congress flags China as threat

A TOP United States military official has raised concerns over China’s ongoing militarization in the South China Sea, saying China may challenge US presence in the region once it deploys its forces in its bases in the disputed waters. The post Report to US Congress flags China as threat appeared first on BusinessWorld......»»

Category: financeSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsJun 13th, 2018

China invading PH? Nonsense, says envoy

KAWIT, Cavite --- Chinese Ambassador Zhao Jianhua dismissed on Tuesday as "nonsense" talk spreading about China invading the Philippines that spread when a Chinese military plane landed in Davao City. "I'm really puzzled and even surprised that some of the people here [are] taking the landing of Chinese military jets as a kind of military threat to the Philippines," Zhao told reporters. He also said some people said the landing of the Chinese plane in Davao City indicated that this might be the "beginning of our invasion." "Please allow me to be blunt, it's nonsense. We have never thought of going to war with our good neighbor, our good friend that is the Philippines," he said. ...Keep on reading: China invading PH? Nonsense, says envoy.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJun 12th, 2018

China plane only refueling in Davao? Obvious lie – Trillanes

MANILA, Philippines – Opposition senator Antonio Trillanes IV accused Special Assistant to the President Bong Go of lying when he said that a  Chinese military plane landed in Davao City , President Rodrigo Duterte's hometown, just to refuel. Trillanes said it was not the first time a Chinese plane landed there, citing an unnamed source from ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsJun 12th, 2018

France challenges Beijing, sails ships in South China Sea

PARIS -- France is increasing its military presence in the Indo-Pacific region, sending warships through the South China Sea and planning air exercises to help counter China’s military build-up in disputed waters. In late May, the French assault ship Dixmude and a frigate sailed through the disputed Spratly Islands and….....»»

Category: newsSource:  journalRelated NewsJun 12th, 2018

Spins getting wild

The fact that pinning President Rody Duterte for coddling China as a richly-funded and highly organized effort was again proven after a legitimate refueling of a Chinese military aircraft did the rounds in social media and was made to appear as a breach of sovereignty. It took a Palace action to debunk the deception that […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJun 12th, 2018

Lorenzana says nothing unusual with landing of China military plane - Tempo

Lorenzana says nothing unusual with landing of China military plane - Tempo.....»»

Category: newsSource:  googlenewsRelated NewsJun 12th, 2018