Observers often attribute contradictory statements from the Duterte administration to the natural byproduct of having such a notoriously mercurial character as commander-in-chief. What this conventional strand of analysis misses is the fact that Duterte and his generals are in a constant low-intensity struggle over shaping the Philippines’ policies on sensitive territorial and strategic issues.
Reports of Chinese oceanographic research vessels operating off the western coast of the Philippines in late 2016 have stirred up controversy in Manila this month. In this AMTI podcast, Greg Poling speaks with Peter Dutton, director of the China Maritime Studies Institute at the U.S. Naval War College, and Jay Batongbacal, director of the University of the Philippines’ Institute for Maritime Affairs and the Law of the Sea, to assess what the Chinese vessels were doing, whether it was legal, the public response, and what the controversy says about future cooperation between China and the Philippines
Philippine secretary of national defense Delfin Lorenzana stirred up a political maelstrom in Manila last week with the revelation that Chinese survey vessels were apparently conducting oceanographic research work off the east coast of Luzon, the largest island of the Philippines.
AMTI Director Gregory Poling discusses the implications of Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte's relationship with Donald Trump, its impact on the U.S.-PH alliance and maritime security, the fallout from Duterte’s drug war, and the decisions facing both sides.
If the Philippine military is conscripted into Rodrigo Duterte's drug war and participates in extra-judicial killings, congressional regulations could force the United States to suspend military aid and training to the units involved, a potentially devastating impact on the bilateral military relationship.
A new chapter has begun in the long-stale Philippines-Russia relationship.
The surprising election of Donald Trump has raised hopes for a less fraught relationship between Washington and Manila in the near future.
Key agreements and relationships remain in place for a U.S.-Philippine alliance reset under the incoming Donald Trump administration, but there are reasons to be skeptical about whether the relationship can be put back on an upward trajectory.
Security analysts have questioned whether U.S.-Philippine defense cooperation can survive six years of a Philippine president seemingly driven by anti-Western ideology. Those fears should be somewhat allayed, as Duterte has walked back some of his earlier pronouncements and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has declared that the Philippine-U.S. security alliance will not be abrogated and that the EDCA will stay in place.
Breaking with tradition, the Philippines’ controversial leader Rodrigo Duterte chose China for the first major state visit of his presidency. Traditionally, Filipino leaders have visited “all-weather” friends such as Washington or Tokyo before Beijing. This time, however, the Filipino president decided to postpone a scheduled visit to Japan in favor of China, while signaling strategic […]