Press Release
November 24, 2010


In yesterday's hearing of the Legislative Oversight Committee on the Visiting Forces Agreement (LOCVFA) held in the Senate, Senator Edgardo J. Angara called on his colleagues to reexamine the Philippines' mutual defense alliances that could now be based on "outdated assumptions".

"We should discuss not just the issue of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) itself but the underlying defense security arrangement between the United States and the Philippines. The military bases agreement was concluded when our country was still practically a colony of the US and therefore, has many assumptions that may no longer exist," he explained.

According to Angara, vice-chair of the Senate Committee on foreign relations, the worldwide political dynamics has undergone a drastic change over the past decades. For instance, Russia--once treated as a pariah by the other nations because of their occupation of Georgia--has been formally invited by the NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) to take part in a mutual defense pact and joint military exercises much like the Balikatan.

Angara also cited the historic 50-year military pact signed by UK and France to form a special military force of 5000 troops, and agreeing to test their nuclear armaments jointly. This agreement between two countries, which has been enemies for centuries, was almost unthinkable just a couple of years ago.

"My point is, the whole security architecture of the world is changing rapidly, and unless we review the original defense pact between the US and the Philippines, we may suddenly realize that we are still bogged down as the least trained, least prepared and poorest equipped military in the region. I think that has been our lack in this mutual agreement deal. These new realities call for a re-examination of all our essential security alliances and arrangements," he asserted.

News Latest News Feed