“The last time the US opened its mouth, it told PH and China to stand down in Scarborough and withdraw. We did. China stayed. The US was silent. Silence gives consent. We lost. Under Trump this is supposed to change. Obama’s craven diplomats must be purged from State,” Locsin tweeted over the weekend.
File
China’s taking of Scarborough has tacit US permission — Teodoro Locsin
Pia Lee-Brago (The Philippine Star) - June 17, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. has questioned the inclusion of the Philippines in the US call against coercion and intimidation in asserting claim in the South China Sea, saying the taking of Scarborough (Panatag) Shoal happened with Washington’s “tacit” permission and consent as shown in its silence when China remained in the shoal.

“The last time the US opened its mouth, it told PH and China to stand down in Scarborough and withdraw. We did. China stayed. The US was silent. Silence gives consent. We lost. Under Trump this is supposed to change. Obama’s craven diplomats must be purged from State,” Locsin tweeted over the weekend.

“Why is the US including the Philippines in its urging against coercion?” said in reply to a netizen. “It has come to this: somos o no somos. US statement was meant to fence-sit. I know the American longing for Chinese capital and markets; it is not the rich country it was; but with a Republican administration I expect it to uphold American hegemony smartly.”

Locsin recalled having said that: “freedom of navigation is just a walk in the zoo past the animals locked in cages if the US will not fight to uphold the rights of sovereign nations.”

China-Philippines relations, he added, consist of anything and everything that transpires, including the taking of Scarborough with tacit US permission.

In a statement on Friday, the US embassy in Manila urged all parties to refrain from using coercion and intimidation to assert their territorial and maritime claims.

The US issued the statement after China admitted a Chinese vessel hit a Philippine boat near Recto Bank (Reed Bank) and caused it to sink in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).

The Philippines filed a diplomatic protest after Filipino fishermen said a Chinese vessel rammed their anchored boat on June 9, then abandoned them as the boat sank. 

Philippine officials strongly condemned the Chinese action.

Last week, the secretary rejected a netizen’s suggestion to ask support of friendly nations for the protest, saying the international community can be bought.

“F*** the international community. It can be bought. This is our fight and in the end ours alone,” Locsin said in a tweet.

The Chinese embassy said in a statement on Friday that the Chinese vessel accidentally hit the Filipino boat as it tried to maneuver while being “besieged” by several Filipino fishing boats.

It said the Chinese captain tried to rescue the Filipinos but was afraid of being besieged by other Filipino boats.

The US assured the Philippines that Washington will come to its defense if its forces, aircraft and vessels in the South China Sea are attacked, saying any armed attack there will trigger the 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) obligations under which America’s commitments are “clear.”

During his visit in Manila in March, US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo said US obligations under the defense treaty are “real.”

The MDT provides that the Philippines and the US will come to each other’s aid in case of armed attacks.

Article IV of the MDT provides that: “Each Party recognizes that an armed attack in the Pacific area on either of the Parties would be dangerous to its own peace and safety and declares that it would act to meet the common dangers in accordance with its constitutional processes.”

The South China Sea, Pompeo said, is certainly part of an important body of water for freedom of navigation, noting that the Trump administration has made a true commitment to making sure that these seas remain open for the security of countries in the region and for the world that is open for commercial transit.

CHINA SOUTH CHINA SEA UNITED STATES
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