I am not wont to give criticism (nor praise) to President Aquino. But now I am beginning to wonder about some recent pronouncements of his that are being reported in media. They sound awful.
I read this, this evening: http://globalnation.inquirer.net/75177/philippines-protests-chinese-warships-presence where the offending quote was:
““Our message to the whole world is clear: what belongs to the Philippines belongs to the Philippines,” Aquino said in a speech at a naval base in Cavite province south of Manila. “We can fight back and defend ourselves every time somebody will threaten us right in our own home ground.” (emphasis mine)
I guess we could . . .and face the consequences. He didn’t say anything about prevailing, winning or succeeding.
A blistering critique of the diplomatic ineptitude of President Aquino by Alex Magno: http://www.philstar.com/opinion/2013/05/21/944426/retreat
“For generations, Chinese and Filipino fishermen fished peaceably around the Shoal. For as long as no nation asserted sovereignty over the area (translating into exclusive access), this condition might have persisted for generations to come.
Things changed when, in a moment of populist bravado, President Benigno Aquino declared in a major speech that foreigners will be accosted at Recto Bank like they were at Recto Avenue. That was good sound bite, but a disastrous policy statement. We drew a line on the sand that Beijing eagerly crossed. There is a price to pay for arrogant bluster.” (again emphasis mine)
Perhaps there is a pattern here.
The president is very popular and the most powerful person in the country. Perhaps he is forgetting that is simply not the case when you start playing in the international arena. Admittedy it is easy to second guess the actions of a politicians in the realm of diplomacy. The ultimate test would be where our relations will be with Taiwan and China in a few months. Is anyone optimistic?