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Revive US Military Base in the Philippines

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Revive US Military Base in the Philippines
« on: September 16, 2020, 11:48:18 AM »
#OnThisDay September 16, 1991, Senate votes, 12–11, to reject a Treaty of Friendship, Peace and Cooperation between the U.S. and Philippines, an agreement for renewal of American military bases in the Philippines in exchange for aid, forcing them to leave the country.[1]

Prior to this, President Corazon C. Aquino, unfazed by the development of the events, issued an appeal to the people to join the mammoth rally to be held at the Rizal Park to push for Senate ratification of the new pact which would allow the Americans to give Clark Air Base but keep Subic Naval Base for 10 more years in exchange for $203 million in annual aid.[2]

The Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) between the Republic of the Philippines and the United States of America was signed on August 30, 1951, in Washington, D.C. between representatives of the Philippines and the United States. The overall accord contains eight articles and dictates that both nations would support each other if either the Philippines or the United States are attacked by an external party.[3]

The late 1970s and 1980s saw a rise in anti-US sentiment following the increasing allegations and perpetrations of U.S. military personnel misconduct towards Filipino men and women. The nightclubs and social hotspots surrounding Clark Air Force Base and Naval Base Subic Bay became flashpoints of allegations of assaults by U.S. service-members on the local Filipinos.[4]

The majority of the Philippine Senate were in opposition to renewal. As a result, the last of the U.S. military personnel in the Philippines were removed from the bases on November 24, 1992.[5]

As a result of the unfortunate events surrounding 9/11 the U.S. began restructuring and exercising its rights of the U.S. Philippine Defense Treaty as a part of its War on Terrorism[6] which included deployment of U.S. forces to the Philippines in Operation Enduring Freedom – Philippines to advise and assist the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). As the U.S. military and Philippine Armed Forces began training and conducting anti-terrorist missions within the Philippine archipelago, anti-US sentiment slowly began to rise once again.

On April 28, 2014, desiring to enhance cooperative capacities and efforts in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, the two governments executed an Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA). However, petitioners questioned the legality of EDCA, but the Supreme Court later ruled that the EDCA was constitutional.

The EDCA is designed to promote the following between the Philippines and the United States[7]:

Capacity building towards AFP modernization
Strengthening AFP for external defense
Maritime Security
Maritime Domain Awareness
Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Response (HADR)

The agreement allows U.S. forces access to and use of designated areas and facilities owned and controlled by the Armed Forces of the Philippines at the invitation of the Philippine Government. It contains clear provision that the U.S. will not establish a permanent military presence or base in the Philippines and a prohibition of entry to the Philippines of nuclear weapons.[8]

The EDCA has an initial term of ten years, and thereafter will continue in force until terminated by either party after having given a one-year notice of intention to terminate.[9]

[1] Wayback Machine “Philippines: A Country Study” Archived April 18, 2012
[2] Manuel D. Duldulao, A Century of Philippine Legislature, 2007, Vol II, p. 719
[3] “Mutual Defense Treaty Between the United States and the Republic of the Philippines”. Chan Robles Law Library
[4] O'Connor, Brendon; Griffiths, Martin (2007). Anti-Americanism in the Philippines. Comparative Perspectives
[5] “Philippine Senate Votes to Reject U.S. Base Renewal”. New York Times
[6] “US Military Operations in the War on Terrorism”. Congressional Research Service
[7] “Document: Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement”. Official Gazette. Government of the Philippines
[8] “Q&A on the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement”. Official Gazette. Government of the Philippines
[9] “Document: Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement”. Official Gazette. Government of the Philippines
10. Wikimedia Commons

#MutualDefenseTreaty #MDT
#EnhancedDefenseCooperationAgreement #EDCA

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