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Regime Change In the Philippines
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When will the neoconservative chant begin: “Duterte must go”? Or will the CIA assassinate him?

President Rodrigo Duterte has indicated that he intends a more independent foreign policy. He has announced upcoming visits to China and Russia, and his foreign minister has declared that it is time for the Philippines to end its subservience to Washington. In this sense, regime change has already occurred.

Duterte has suspended military maneuvers with the US. His defense minister said that the Philippines can get along without US military aid and prefers cooperation over conflict with China.

Duterte might simply be trying to extract a larger pay-off from Washington, but he had better be careful. Washington will not let Duterte move the Philippines into the Chinese camp.

Unless, of course, Washington has bitten off more than it can chew in the Middle East, Africa, South America, Ukraine, Russia and China and is too occupied elsewhere to deal with the Philippines. Still, Duterte would do well to request a praetorian guard from China.

The view is spreading in Asia that the American era is over, wrecked by disastrous US economic and foreign policies. The rise of Russia and China has birthed what William Engdahl calls the Eurasian Century.

China’s One Belt One Road approach to Eurasian development is cooperative. The operating principle is that everyone works together to build a future for everyone. This is far more attractive than Washington’s arrogance of organizing the world in the interest of US corporations.

As Michael Hudson, James Galbraith, and I have explained, Western economic organization has deteriorated into a system of financial looting. For example, the economy of Greece has been destroyed in order that private banks that over-lent to the Greek government did not have to write down any of the bad debt. Instead, the debt was paid by reducing Greek pensions, cutting education, healthcare and public employment, and by privatizing public companies, such as municipal water companies, with the result being a higher price of water to people whose incomes are falling.

The cost of participating in the Western system is imposed austerity and loss of national sovereignty. Economic cooperation with China does not result in such costs.

Most likely, Duterte has decided to switch the Philippines’ bet from the US to China. When Japan and South Korea also realign, the “pivot to Asia” is over.

Then perhaps even Europe will awaken and the conflict that the neoconservatives are brewing between the West and Russia will be stillborn.

Otherwise, mushroom clouds will prevail.

Whether there is time for these changes before mushroom clouds make their appearance depends on the outcome of the US presidential election. Americans are an insouciant people and do not understand the stakes. Hillary has promised conflict with Russia. Trump says he sees no point in conflict with Russia. This difference is the only important issue in the election.

(Republished from by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Duterte, Philippines 
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  1. Most likely, Duterte has decided to switch the Philippines’ bet from the US to China. When Japan and South Korea also realign, the “pivot to Asia” is over.

    First the Philippines, then Japan and South Korea. First Turkey, then Germany and France. China and Russia are ascendant. Imperial Washington is in steep decline. Killing Duterte won’t change anything.

    The U.S. could be a player in a multi polar world. By refusing to play she will get NOTHING.

  2. Jason Liu says:

    When Japan and South Korea also realign

    That’s a pretty big if. I think you grossly underestimate how much animosity there is between East Asian countries.

    A united Asia would be nice, though. American influence, both cultural and political, have done great damage to Asians.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  3. Rehmat says:

    President Rodrigo Duterte deserves to be assassinated for calling Jewish ambassador Philip Goldberg, GAY, THE SON OF WHORE. He is lucky he is not president of United States, France or Germany.

    United States is the largest supplier of arms to Philippines. Other suppliers since 2008 included France, Germany, Italy, Israel, South Korea, and Poland. In 2014, Manila signed a $20 millions deal with Israel’s Elbit to supply Philippines Army its latest armored personnel carriers including 25 mm unmanned turrets, 12.7 mm remote controlled weapon stations (RCWS) and fire control systems (FCS) for 90 mm turrets.

  4. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Jason Liu

    UK and France had animosity towards eachother and now they are allies.

    Comparing the relationship between asian countries when they are all poor and fighting for American scraps is different than when there will be a genuine interest in cooperating with eachother to grow their economies.

    Not saying it is a sure thing or easy to see Asian nations cooperate, but what is currently meta is a product of Western divide and conquer tactics and should not be automatically assumed to be carried forward.

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