Duterte: No joint expeditions with US during my time

Alexis Romero - Philstar.com
Duterte: No joint expeditions with US during my time

Philippine, Australian and US service members participate in a cooperative health engagement during exercise Balikatan in Cagayancillo, Philippines April 10, 2016.  U.S. Marine Corps/Jason W. Fudge/Released, file

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines will not be joining the United States' wars because they brought nothing but "agony" and "brutality" to Filipinos, President Duterte said Wednesday.
Duterte said the Philippines has had enough of colonial rule, noting that country was under the control of Spaniards and Americans for a combined period of about 450 years. 
"I'm addressing America right now, whatever expeditions that you will conduct, any wars that you will fight in any other countries, count us out. We did not gain anything (from) all these years of sacrifice except brutality and agony," the president said during the graduation of the Philippine National Police Academy "Maragtas" class of 2018 in Cavite.
The Philippines sends peacekeepers to United Nations missions abroad but the last time that the Philippines sent an expeditionary force was during the Korean War in the early 1950s.
Contingents sent abroad since then have consisted of mostly engineering and medical personnel.
"We have been enslaved by two countries in succession - Spaniards for 400 years and the Americans for 50 years. That's enough. You have had your fill, do not ask for more," he added. 
The Philippines and its traditional ally the US has had a troubled relationship since Duterte assumed power in 2016. The Mutual Defense Treaty between the Philippines and the US only covers mutual support in case of attack by an external enemy.
The US under Barack Obama had called Duterte out for the spate of deaths linked to the Philippine leader's war on illegal drugs. Duterte lashed back at the US by accusing it of meddling with the Philippines' internal issues and by enumerating the American troops' atrocities during the Filipino-American War. 
Duterte's fiery rhetoric against the US lessened after Obama's successor Donald Trump expressed support for the Philippines' anti-narcotics crackdown.

Iraq wars 

Duterte cited the wars in Iraq that happened during the time of US Presidents George Bush Sr. and George W. Bush.  
"They (US) always demand that (we) participate in the expeditions," the president said. 
The Philippines was not part of the Coalition of the Gulf War in the 1990s but sent a 51-member contingent of medics, engineers and soldiers to the Multi-National Force in 2003. The Philippines pulled out in 2004 after a civilian truck driver was kidnapped and later released.
"It is a two-way affair. But I’d like to remind you: Is this our payment for fighting in your country?"
Duterte said he would distance himself from the US's wars even if it means losing financial aid. 
"We will stand on our own even if we don't have money... We will never beg for any help. Sometimes, it could mean really the dignity of the people," the Philippine leader said. 
"If that's the case, unless we are threatened directly, there will be no more joint expeditions. At least during my time. Wait until I'm gone." 
The president also chided the US for allegedly stealing the Philippines' natural resources and the oil of Arab countries.
"You stole our natural resources. You stole the oil of the Arab countries, divided (them) arbitrarily into (nations) and now you are still stealing oil from them. And there is trouble everywhere," he said.

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