Nationalist Global Times says, War inevitable between China, US
unless....... Written by Tribune Wires Tuesday, 26 May
Tabloid newspaper owned by ruling Communist Party's official newspaper.
Beijing files complaint vs Washington over spy plane flight
Nationalist Global Times, a tabloid owned by the ruling
Communist Party’s official newspaper, the People’s Daily, said war is
“inevitable” between China and the United States unless Washington stops
demanding that Beijing halts the building of artificial islands in the disputed
China also said yesterdaty that it had filed a complaint with the United States over a US spy plane that flew over parts of the disputed South China Sea in a diplomatic row that has fueled tension between the world’s two largest economies.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying said on Monday China had lodged a complaint and that it opposed “provocative behavior” by the United States.
“We urge the US to correct its error, remain rational and stop all irresponsible words and deeds,” she said. “Freedom of navigation and overflight by no means mean that foreign countries’ warships and military aircraft can ignore the legitimate rights of other countries as well as the safety of aviation and navigation.”
China had noted “ear-piercing voices” from many in the U.S. about China’s construction on the islands and reefs.
It said China was determined to finish its construction work, calling it the country’s “most important bottom line”.
The Global Times said that experts have warned of a potential military conflict over heightened US surveillance in the South China Sea and cautioned that both sides should try their best to avoid miscalculation in the world’s most important bilateral relations.
Analysts believe that recent US military activity is another example of how the US is struggling to maintain the status quo while coping with the rise of China as a global power.
They urged the US to face up to the reality that China is
becoming a maritime power and that China’s determination to protect its
sovereignty should not be underestimated.
“The South China Sea issue makes up a small portion of Sino-US ties,” wrote Cen Shaoyu, an international relations commentator.
“Leaders from both countries should understand that the future of China and the US, as well as the future of Asia, are far beyond just that.”
South China Sea disputes have intensified after soldiers from the Philippines and the United States partnered to conduct war games on the island of Palawan. Reuters. READ EARLY NEWSREPORT here by Reuters for the IBTimes.com
China electronically jammed Global Hawk long-range surveillance drones spying on China’s Nansha Islands, a possible attempt to capture a Global Hawk by causing one to crash in shallow waters, or to snatch one in flight using a manned aircraft, The Washington Free Beacon reported on Friday.
Disclosure of the jamming came as a US P-8A anti-submarine and
maritime surveillance aircraft flew over waters off China’s Nansha Islands for
reconnaissance activities on Wednesday.
It is the US that traveled thousands of miles to China’s doorstep to force China to safeguard national territorial sovereignty and maritime interests, Peng Guangqian, a specialist in military strategy at the PLA Academy of Military Science, told the Global Times.
“China’s responses were justified acts of self-defense when the US flights approached China’s territory and were in accordance with international practice,” Tao Wenzhao, a research fellow with the Institute of American Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times.
China will very likely strike back if the US comes within 12 miles of the islands, Peng said, adding that the US was deliberately provoking China.
Contested Kalayaan Island Group (Spratly Islands) Province of the Philippines - invaded by neighbors . Photo:aurorametropolis.files.wordpress.com
“The US provocation has boosted the chance of military confrontation between Beijing and Washington,” Zhu Feng, director of the Collaborative Innovation Center of South China Sea Studies under Nanjing University, told the Global Times.
Once China dispatches aircraft to drive away the US fighters, both sides are likely to exchange fire due to high flight speed, Zhu said.
“The reconnaissance conducted by the US military aircraft poses a potential threat to the security of China’s maritime features, and is highly likely to cause miscalculation, or even untoward maritime and aerial incidents,” Hong Lei, a spokesman for China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, told a regular press conference on Friday.
The presence of the US military in the South China Sea also encouraged countries’ neighboring the waters to increase military build-up, making the region more unstable and deterring peaceful settlement through dialog, said Jin Canrong, vice director of the School of International Studies at Renmin University of China.
The Pentagon’s moves came after US Secretary of State John Kerry finished his two-day visit to China on May 17.
Kerry reaffirmed the US government’s stance of not taking sides on the South China Sea issue and said the same stance will apply to other parties involved in the dispute, the Xinhua News Agency reported.
Chinese President Xi Jinping, right, and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during Kerry's visit May 17. As U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry wrapped up a visit to China on Sunday, both sides stressed the importance of dialogue to resolve competing claims in the waterway. But neither showed any sign of giving ground over Chinese land reclamation projects that have alarmed the United States and China's smaller neighbors. Chinese President Xi Jinping, who will be making an official visit to the United States this fall and sought to highlight U.S.-China cooperation.
“The conflicting attitudes adopted by the US government and
its military demonstrated the disunity within the US,” Jin said.
“Of course the involvement of great powers outside the region complicates the South China Sea situation. However, the involvement of major countries also means more convoluted interests are at stake when it comes to making the decision to enter military conflicts,” said Xue Li, a research fellow with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
The Aquino administration again took the American stance, saying that the Philippine government is set to defy China’s claimed airspace over disputed territories in the South China Sea (West Philippine Sea to the Philippines), said President Aquino as he insisted that the country’s aircraft will still fly through the routes on the basis on international law.
Aquino issued the statement following recent reports of the tense radio exchange between the US aircraft and Chinese forces in the South China Sea, where Chinese naval forces told US units to “go away.”
In an interview yesterday in Marikina City, the President insisted that there is no declared Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) on the disputed territories, justifying the motion adopted by the Philippine government.
“Well, we will still fly the routes that we fly based on international law and the various conventions, agreements that have been entered into through various decades. Maybe we should not think that we are being singled-out or another because there is no declared ADIZ on those that our carrriers pass through,” he said.
The Chinese foreign ministry insists it has sovereign rights to those waters, maritime features and the airspace above.
China claims nearly all of the South China Sea, even waters approaching the coasts of the Philippines and other Asian neighbors.
In recent years it has caused alarm with increasingly aggressive actions to assert its claims.
It is undertaking giant land reclamation works in the Spratlys, located between the Vietnam and the Philippines, to turn reefs into islands that can host airstrips and other military facilities.
The Spratlys, about a thousand kilometers from the nearest major Chinese landmass, are one of the biggest and most strategically important archipelagos in the sea.
Aquino said the Philippines would not give up its territory to China, even as he acknowledged major differences in the capabilities of their militaries.
“We will still exercise our rights over our exclusive economic zone,” he said.
“Bottom line is, it has to be clear, we will defend our rights to the best of our abilities.”
Aquino said the Philippines is also working closely on the issue with the United States, his nation’s longtime ally and mutual defense treaty partner, but declined to elaborate.
“Even in basketball, you don’t reveal all your moves to the other coach,” he said.
P-NOY AND US SEC. KERRY: Pres. Aquino warns the world against China in an interview with NY Times - VeraFiles 2014 file photo
Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan also have competing claims to parts of the South China Sea.
All claimants but Brunei have military facilities on Spratly islands that they control.
Philippine Air Force spokesman Colonel Enrico Canaya said its planes flew over the sea, including the route taken by the US Navy plane.
He declined to give more details.
The Philippine civil aviation authority said local carriers also flew over parts of the sea that were considered international air lanes.
Aquino said that the country should not preempt a problem that has yet to exists, noting the clear disparity of force or available military force between the two countries – China and the Philippines. The President anchored his claims on the possible image of China to the world if it continues to step on the country and other claimants in the rift-laden waters.
“If they push too far on smaller countries compared to China, how can it help China’s image where it will need goodwill happening with whole countries that they are partners in commerce and keys to success,” he said.
But China has been asserting its claims on the disputed territories already, initially only the seas, followed by artificial islands. When the United States started monitoring the activities in the South China Sea, Beijing opted to claim the airspace on disputed territories under its “sovereignty.”
The Chinese coast guard has already issued warnings to the Philippines’ aircraft flying over China’s artificial islands, claiming that it is Chinese military territory.
Asked whether such motion is already an implied “de facto” ADIZ declaration on the part of the Chinese, Aquino stuck to the original arbitration and diplomatic approach of the government.
“Well, number one, the Chinese military territory, I don’t think—I haven’t come across those exact phrasings. They have what they call indisputable sovereignty that they have been saying for the longest time, that’s why we have the two tracks: arbitration and Asean (Association of South East Asian Nations),” he said.
“And again, going back, we will still exercise our rights over our exclusive economic zone (EZZ). At the same time, we should also be responsible, we have maritime awareness, we know what’s happening, and we have a calculated response to all of these incidents that are happening,” the President said.
While recognizing the increasing tension in the disputed territories, Malacañang earlier reiterated that it will stick to its diplomatic stance, particularly the arbitration sought from the United Nations (UN) and the creation of a binding Code of Conduct through the Asean.
The Chinese navy issued eight such warnings during the US P-8’s flight near the Fiery Cross Reef, one of the sites of Beijing’s massive land reclamation effort according to a CNN report, whereas American pilots replied in each case that they were flying through “international airspace.” With Joshua L. Labonera, Glonal Times Report and AFP
Philippine Education For all 2015: Implementation and Challenges
I. General Introduction
1. Filipinos have deep regard to for education. Education occupies a central place in Philippine political, economic social and cultural life. It has always been strongly viewed as a pillar of national development and a primary avenue for social and economic mobility.
2. A clear evidence of the value placed on education is the proportion of the national government budget going to the sector. The Department of Education (DepEd), the country’s biggest bureaucracy 1 , is given the highest budget allocation among government agencies each year as required by the 1987 Philippine Constitution.2
3. The 1987 Constitution likewise guarantees the right to education of every Filipino. It provided that, “The State shall protect and promote the right of all citizens to quality education at all levels and shall take appropriate steps to make education accessible to all.
”Constitution likewise guarantees the right to education of every
provided that, “The State shall protect and promote the right of all citizens to
education at all levels and shall take appropriate steps to make education
4. The right of every Filipino to quality basic education is further emphasized in Republic Act 9155 or the Governance of Basic Education Act of 2001. Along with Republic Act 6655 or the Free Secondary Education Act, these laws reaffirm the policy of the State to protect and promote the rights of all Filipinos by providing children free and compulsory education in the elementary and high school level.
pertains to six years of free tuition fees for children aged 6 to 11, and free
of secondary schooling for those aged 12 to 15.
5. Along with “Education for All”, the Philippines is also committed to pursue eight time bound
and specific targets under the Millennium Declaration which it signed on September 2000.
The Declaration, in general, aims to reduce poverty by half in 2015 (22.65 percent proportion of the population below poverty incidence and 12.15 percent below subsistence incidence by 2015).
With the adoption of the Declaration, the Philippines likewise affirmed its commitment to the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) geared towards reducing poverty, hunger, diseases, illiteracy, environmental degradation and discrimination against women.
been mainstreamed in the country’s Medium Term Philippine Development Plan
(MTPDP) 2004-2010 including policies and plans related to children, access to
primary education and gender equality. Specifically, Part IV of the MTPDP
focused on “Education and Youth Opportunity.”
6. However, despite the legal mechanisms, budget prioritization and increased access, Philippine education has been dogged with issues.
Among the issues that needs to be resolved but have improved lately include the high dropout rates, high number of repeaters, low passing grades, lack of particular language skills, failure to adequately respond and address the needs of people with special needs, overcrowded classrooms and poor teacher performances.
problems in turn resulted to a considerable number of illiterate Filipinos and
out of school youths and graduates
who are not prepared for work.
1 Allocation for basic education averages 85 percent of the total education budget according to an unpublished UNCountry Report in 2008.
2 Article XIV, Sec. 5, paragraph 5 of the Philippine Constitution.
--------------------------------------------------------(Jump to IV)-----
IV. Conclusion and Recommendations
139. To attain the 2015 goal and targets of Education For All, the country needs to implement policies, programs and projects that will address the needs of specific learners, particularly those belonging to the un-reached and under-served groups.
A. Explicit Articulation of Inclusive Education Policy and
Substantial Increase in Budget Provision
140. First, DepEd needs to explicitly articulate “Inclusive Education” as the overall policy and planning framework of EFA.
This policy will dictate how the curriculum will be delivered including the programs, projects, and resource requirements that will support the specific needs of particular groups of learners.
One of the policies that DepEd will be issuing
soon is the institutionalization of Alternative Delivery Mode Programs that will
cater to learners in difficult and different circumstances and which will use
141. Second, the government should take comprehensive but concrete actions to address the inadequate use of the budget for basic education. Specifically, the government should consider the following in coming-up with a financing strategy for EFA:
● underinvestment in basic education (only 2.4 percent of the GDP); about 85 percent
of DepEd’s budget goes to salaries of personnel; and
● inequitable distribution of limited national and local government resources, especially
for capital outlay and operating costs due to some “loopholes” in existing policies.
142. The current inequitable distribution of resources will require the government to review existing legislations and policies in allocating resources for schools in rural areas to address the existing bias against rural schools.
Moreover, there is a need to revisit the implementation of the law on
“Government Assistance to Students and Teachers in Private Education” to find
out if the national government subsidy to private schools benefits the poor
students and if the private schools produce better quality outputs than the
B. Addressing the Socio-Economic and Geographical/Geophysical Factors that Affect the attainment of Education For All
143. The Philippine basic education system should be flexible and responsive to the needs of learners as affected by non-school factors, such as: 51
a. Economic Factors
● The country is still dependent on agriculture, fishing and forestry but at the same time
an emerging global market for business process, ICT spare parts, medical services, to
name a few, and this will require DepEd’s implementation of a more relevant basic education
curriculum in relation to local and global needs.
● The country is a significant source of migrant workers – schools need to be responsive
to the needs of schoolchildren of migrant workers (especially those with deviant/risk
behavior, falterers, etc.).
● High poverty incidence has resulted in non-affordability of the private cost of
basic education to very poor households; there is a need to explore possible inclusion in
the DepEd and/or LGU budget grants for pupils/ students of very poor families to cover
other schooling-related expenses.
b. Social Factors
● The increasing percentage of school-age population requires the government to
effectively and efficiently implement fiscal reforms as this will have major implications
in attaining the goal of education for all. In this regard, DepEd should actively participate
in advocating for efficient tax revenue collection. Moreover, mobilization of resources
from local governments, private sector and other partners will also help the country finance
the increasing budgetary requirements of EFA.
c. Language and Cultural Factors
● With different ethnic and Muslim groups spread across country – effective
implementation of the curriculum indigenization policy and national curriculum
for Muslim education is imperative.
● With more than 111 dialects spoken there is a need to revisit the current policy
on medium of instruction: effective nationwide implementation of the use of the
mother tongue or the child’s language as medium for instruction in pre-school and
the first two grades in the elementary level.
d. Geographical and geophysical factors
● Considering the huge size of the basic education system, (over 40,000 public
schools in 7,107 islands) the applications of modern information and communication
technology may offer the only feasible medium for delivering high-quality instruction
to millions of learners in a large, diverse and geographically dispersed population.
● DepEd must seriously consider adopting a flexible school calendar – e.g., first three
months of the school calendar (June to August) are the rainy months with frequent
flooding in Metro Manila; supervision of schools is very difficult and dangerous during
the rainy and typhoon season.
● There is need to adopt differentiated designs for school facilities to withstand natural
calamities such as typhoons and earthquakes 52
C. Reaching the Un-reached and Underserved Groups of Learners
144. Providing children in difficult/different circumstances access to quality and relevant basic education is still a big challenge that the country should immediately
address. To wit:
• Children Engaged in Labor. DepEd needs to intensify the implementation of its distance learning program both for elementary and secondary levels so that schoolchildren who really need to work to earn a living could still continue schooling even without regularly attending classes.
• Street Children. DepEd needs to establish a strong partnership with other government agencies and other partners (NGOs, private/business sector/LGUs) in providing basic education and other social and livelihood services to street children and their families (the main objective of the latter services is to sustain children’s schooling).
• Children with Special Needs (Gifted and Differently-abled). With the limited coverage of existing government educational facilities, DepEd together with other agencies and partners need to work on the expansion of basic education services to reach more persons with disability.
DepEd should specifically work
the strengthening and expansion of its SPED classes in the existing public
elementary and secondary schools and the strengthening and enrichment of its
regular classes to mainstream the people with disabilities.
• Muslim Children. With the big percentage (93%) of Muslim school-age population in the public school system, the effective implementation of the national curriculum for Muslim education in the public school system is very critical.
The overall goal of the curriculum is to develop the core competencies of Muslim children in order for them to function effectively in society within the context of their environment and culture and that of the wider community. In the long run, it will hopefully effectively address the economic, social, political problems in Muslim-dominated areas and the entire country in general.
• Children in Conflict-Affected Areas. Convergence of support for the protection of children, especially those who are not educated from being vulnerable targets for training and indoctrination as fighters. There is also a need to execute a covenant among and between concerned parties to protect schools as “peace zones”.
145. In summary, the country was not able to attain its 2005 targets in almost all key outcome indicators in Early Childhood Education, Formal Basic Education and Alternative Learning System.
Most of the regions have performance classified as “falling
further behind” or with
performance lower than the national level in 2002 and continued to decline in
While substantial investments were poured into the establishment of basic education facilities, these were not enough to ensure that all 3-5 year olds are in Early Childhood Education learning centers, and all school-aged children were in school and able to continue and eventually complete basic education with satisfactory achievement level.
The basic education system should 53 be responsive to the differentiated needs of learners where a “one-size fit all” or conventional interventions (such as construction of classrooms, provision of textbooks, etc) are not enough or will no longer work.
146. While there are pockets of excellence in some areas, the overall performance of the country is declining and disparity among regions, against learners in rural schools (especially in terms of access and completion) and against male children is widening.
For the country to achieve its targets in 2010 and move ahead towards
attaining its 2015 targets, the various basic education stakeholders should
efforts and resources in assisting the regions, divisions, schools or groups of
who are lagging behind in key outcome indicators.
147. In addition to the recommendations put forward vis-à-vis the thematic challenges discussed, the Country EFA Mid-Decade Assessment highly recommends the following policy actions and programs:
Early Childhood Education
1. Increase public and private investment in Early Childhood Education to build more facilities for increasing 3-5 year old enrollees
2. Support alternative modes of delivering Early Childhood Education (home or community-based)
3. Improve the quality of Early Childhood Education services by strengthening the registration/accreditation system
4. Intensify the health and nutrition component of Early Childhood Education
Formal Basic Education
a. Intensify efforts to reach the un-reached and underserved through the following:
• Establishment of elementary and secondary schools in un-/under-served
• Complete the over 7,000 incomplete elementary schools through the multigrade scheme; develop/procure multi-level instructional materials for pupils; establish a separate career path for multi-grade teachers; and provide training programs and monetary incentives for multi-grade teachers (while a separate career path has yet to be established)
• Provide direct support to learners of very poor families (e.g., conditional cash transfer)
b. Scale-up promising or proven effective innovations addressing needs of children in difficult or different circumstances (children engaged in labor; street children; children with special needs; Muslim and indigenous peoples’ children; children in conflict-affected areas; and children with deviant/risk behavior)
c. Improve the quality of formal basic education services
• Further “decongest” the curriculum to focus on developing life skills coupled with an effective and efficient national testing and assessment system
• Implement the “Mother Tongue/Child’s Language” as medium of instruction in Early Childhood Education and Grades 1 to 3 levels 54
• Strengthen and deepen the implementation of the Child-Friendly School System which promotes rights-based education (should not just be a program or a strategy but a culture that every school should nurture)
• Scale-up and strengthen the implementation of Every Child A Reader Program in all public elementary schools nationwide
• Expand and/or deepen High School Bridge/Remediation Program for Year 1 entrants
• Implement a comprehensive ICT program to deliver the same high quality of basic education services to all schoolchildren at the shortest possible time
• Rationalize the implementation of in-service training programs by different levels – should be competency-based and demand-driven (start from school level)
• Institutionalize the Accreditation Programs of elementary and secondary
Alternative Learning System
a. Operationalize the Joint Circular on establishing local literacy coordinating councils and literacy implementing units
b. Fast track the introduction of methodologies to incorporate basic and functional literacy skills development in existing community development programs of various partners
c. Increase DepEd’s budget for the Bureau of Alternative Learning System to enable it to continuously undertake policy/standard setting, national coordination and quality assurance (providing technical support and monitoring and evaluation)
d. Redesign the Alternative Learning System program viz. Ladderized Technical and Vocational Skills Program of TESDA
e. Intensify the Parent Education Program to develop parents’ functional literacy skills and to advocate the value of being “educated”
Governance, Management and Finance
a. Increase public and private investment in basic education and provide more resources for depressed, disadvantaged and underserved areas
b. Strengthen governance and management of the system
• Establish and operationalize the EFA Implementation Coordination Machinery by tapping existing EFA-related structures at different levels
• Translate the National EFA Plan into Regional, Provincial, City and Municipal Levels
• Expand/restructure the local school board to make it more responsive to EFA needs (including Early Childhood Education and Alternative Learning System) Within the Department of Education
• Fully implement decentralization through school-based management (includes but not limited to restructuring of the organization and reforming the financial management system to fully support school-based management)
• Enforce transparency and accountability at different levels
READ FULL pdf file REPORT:
Advantages and Disadvantages of k 12 Edester Buelva
RESEARCHER: Uploaded by Edester Buelva -From Bulan, Sorsogon, Philippines: ACADEMIA.EDU Research Interests: International Journal Public Policy, Glenne B. Lagura, K12 Educational System in the Philippines, Policy Paper, K to 12 Basic Education Curriculum, and Public Administration
The short duration of the basic education program also puts the millions of overseasFilipino workers (OFWs), especially the professionals, and those who intend to study abroad,at a disadvantage.
Our graduates are not automatically recognized as professionals abroad.
”The best examples are our engineering graduates, who are condemned to international jobs not befitting their professional status due to our not having a 12-year basic education cycle.9.“
The short basic education program affects the human development of the Filipino children.”
If we believe that 17-year-old high school graduates are emotionally, psychologically, and intellectually mature, why do we require them to get parental consent before they get married?
DISADVANTAGE of K-12
If the K-12 Education Plan becomes successful, then the
Philippine education system can
become more competitive among other countries around the world.
Though there are still some problems that the government needs to solve before they can successfully implement the plan.
The proposed program is good but it still won't work if the
needed elements to make it work isn't present.
Such elements includes the number of public school classrooms plus the adequate supply of classroom chairs, books, etc.
If the government could allot a bigger budget to educational
needs, then we could be one-step ahead towards the success of the K-12 program.
Furthermore, parents (especially those who belongs in the poor sector) should be
properly informed and motivated of the advantages of the
K-12 Education Plan.
This is very important since parents plays a major role in providing the child's school allowances, supplies, and fees for other school projects and activities. Add to that the support of parents towards their children in terms of guidance and teaching.
The DepEd seems all set to add two more years to the country’s 10 year basic education curriculum. this is a very tough issue to crack. we think it is a clash between reality and the ideal. a question unanswered – is this for the common good?
The truth is there are already many problems at the current 10-year curriculum and it has nothing to do with number of years. to enumerate a few – there are not enough qualified teachers to teach all the students; that is made worst with just too many students; there are not enough classrooms and schools to comfortably fit all the students (not to mention not enough bathrooms and water supply); there are not enough books; add the problem of poor quality books, on top of that there are not enough facilities and finally very high drop out rates.
The latter, high drop out rates is being caused by something out of the education system but affects a large part of the population – poverty. there are just so many poor families and they are so poor that many of them cannot afford to pay for the already meager amount needed for the education of their children.
Grade school and high school are free in public schools with parents needing to just spend on uniforms, fare and some expenses. the tuition which normally accounts for a very large share of the total expenses are free and yet most poor families can still not afford of what is left for them to spend.
It is not that the expenses are high, it’s just their income is very, very low, it is this inability to afford the other expenses that has caused a very high drop out rate among students.
This plan of the DepEd to add two more years will of course not solve any of the above problems. in fact, it will only extend all those problems by two more years. a longer basic education will also mean even higher drop out rates.
Then there is the problem of additional expenses for the government. as of now, with the 10 year curriculum, there is already desperate lack of classrooms and schools. the public schools cannot turn the students away when they show up to enroll. to cope many public schools have crammed as many students as they can inside the classroom with classrooms crammed with chairs from wall to wall.
Not enough, the schools conduct classes in at least shifts, in some instances classes held very early in the morning till late in the evening.with two additional years, the schools will definitely need to construct new buildings and classrooms or God forbid conduct classes 24/7.the above is the reality part.
The other disadvantages are presented below:
1. Opponents of year-round school cite: Year-round schools show little to no academic improvement due to the calendar change.
2. Multi-tracking, while cost effective in the short term, actually ends up costing more due to higher utility costs, less or no down time for building maintenance, and the loss of opportunity to build before the cost of labor and materials rise after population increases force the building of new facilities. Multi-tracking does not alleviate the need for new school construction, it merely puts off the decision to build until it is even more cost prohibitive, thus locking communities into overcrowded schools and multi-tracking year-round calendars.
Multi-tracking can cause family and community disintegration. This occurs when siblings/neighbors are on different tracks.
Further disintegration is seen when extended family and church members are on different tracks, or in the case of single-tracking, different inter sessions.3.
Teachers' ability to attend college classes in the summer is compromised due to a year-round calendar.
Teachers who have children in a year-round school, but teach in a non year-round school, or in a year-round school on a different track or calendar, are not able to vacation at the same time during the year or the summer as their family.
Teachers have more problems with children staying focused before
a break, and upon return due to the more frequent breaks throughout the year.
4. Students on year-round calendars tend to lose out on summer employment to their non year-round counterparts.
Student burnout can increase due to the reduction in down time during the summer.
Advanced placement classes are sometimes removed in favor of year-round calendars.
Students in year-round schools have more opportunities to forget what they learned due to the added and extended breaks throughout the year.5. Summer school, where classes can be taken for credit are replaced with inter sessions throughout the year, for no credit.
Inter sessions. tend to turn into play time as inter session content turns into fluff classes and sometimes taught by community volunteers with no background check required.6. Curriculum and materials for the normal school year are approved by the board, but curriculum and materials for inter sessions. are not.
Community members who want to maintain family time and traditions are pitted against those in favor of the change causing communitydivision.7. School districts frequently employ deceptive methods to push the calendar through. Many surveys are framed to yield a predetermined result, yet only the numbers are reported.
Difficulty in scheduling school-wide events such as student assemblies, open-house, or PTA meetings and other functions because at least 1 track is out of school at any point in time.
Child care is more difficult to obtain and some health problems are seen when conducting school activities and classes in the summer heat and people find it hard to pay attention.
FOR An Analysis of the Policy: K-12 Education Program READ HERE
Haste results in narrow scope of BBL, says Marcos
Written by Angie M. Rosales
Tuesday, 26 May 2015 00:00
The apparent haste in drafting the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB), which was the basis of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), resulted in an agreement exclusively between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr., chairman of the local governments panel taking up the BBL bill, said.
Marcos, who consulted Mindanao groups left out in the
negotiations yesterday, realized that Congress is trying to up for the
shortcomings of the government negotiating panel in drawing up the proposed
BBL while at the same time is being tasked by the Palace to work on a tight
Marcos said that the Senate will not be bound by the June 10 deadline set by the Palace on both the House and the Senate to submit their versions of the bill.
Senators yesterday scored the government peace negotiating panel and the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) for their failure to consult with all stakeholders for the proposed bill.
Senators were told, during the hearing on the BBL, that
the task of consulting with stakeholders outside of the MILF, that include
the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), indigenous people and sultanates
of Mindanao, had been tossed to Congress.
No less than the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) has noted the need to engage the MNLF in any negotiation that will lead to the drafting to the BBL, Marcos said as he berated OPAPP Undersecretary Jose Lorena for the glaring omission of the IPs and sultanates as well as affected local governments in the negotiations.
“We are conducting these hearings to make up for that shortcoming, in the process.
OPAPP Undersecretary Jose Lorena shakes hands with Muntinlupa Rep. Rodolfo Biazon during the signing of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro at the Malacañang grounds on Thursday (March 28). Biazon was one of many lawmakers who witnessed the signing of the peace document between the Philippine government and the MILF, aiming to end the decades-old armed struggle of the Moros in Mindanao.
Essentially Usec. Lorena, we are doing your work for you.
This is something that you should have done during the process of
negotiation so that when you presented the BBL to Congress, (secure first)
all of the views, opinions and suggestions from all the stakeholders,”
“All other peace agreements included sultanates. We have to have them to be partners in peace. We cannot possibly have successful peace process when you have not included most ancient of royal houses, the sultanates who are extremely important in any kind of political change that we are trying to institute in the region,” Marcos added.
Lorena explained the MILF was representing the Bangsamoro people during negotiations with the peace panel.
“And after the negotiations, the idea was to submit this to a legislation for purposes of crafting an inclusive Bangsamoro. In the whole process, we understand that the participation of the royalty, the MNLF will be brought together,” the OPAPP official explained.
“You were negotiating about the land, the culture and the history of the sultanates and they were not included in the negotiations,” Marcos pointed out and to which the senator was told that the said sector was included in the representation of the MILF.
This was contradicted by resource persons invited by Marcos’ committee that included 30 sultanates and their representatives and IP leaders, who all claimed that they were left out in negotiating with the BBL or even in the framework agreement and that they did not sanction the MILF to represent them.
Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero then inquired from Lorena as to the basis of the government in dealing mainly with the MILF and he was told that it was on the grounds of the declaration by the OIC in 1974 recognizing the MNLF as the sole and legitimate representative of the Bangsamoro.
“But since there was already an agreement with the MNLF, the other half became the MILF.
So in 1997, there was a continuation of the negotiation of
the MNLF with the MILF. That’s the reality on the ground and I think the
government made that initiative to negotiate with the MILF because they’re
out to represent the other half,” Lorena said.
When asked by Escudero if there exists any document of that sort, signed resolution or any proof that the MILF was given the blessing or the authority by all other stakeholders to represent them, the OPAPP official said there were Bangsamoro congresses which do not pertain to MILF but all people in the Bangsamoro including the sultanates and MNLF.
Yet Lorena himself admitted that he could not attest whether the needed consultation with the said stakeholders were even carried out.
Noy wants to meet with tha Senate
Aquino, meanwhile, said, if needed, he will meet with Senators to nudge forward the deliberation process of the BBL.
Aquino also reminded senators not to delay the passage of the BBL particularly if the agenda is to reap media mileage for the upcoming polls.
Aquino issued the statement following a report of Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago’s committee on constitutional amendments and revision of codes stating that the BBL would require charter change (cha-cha), as she cited various provisions that compromises the BBL’s constitutionality.
The President, on the other hand, was confident the BBL can stand legal scrutiny on its constitutionality.
“We understand that there are many ways to call for attention particularly that the elections are coming next year. But, one calm discussion and coordination, analysis of the BBL, they can see that it will withstand the test of constitutionality,” he said.
Aquino said that members of the former constitutional commission (con-com) that drafted the 1987 Constitution had attested to the adherence of the BBL to the Constitution.
The President noted that if there is a need to amend the draft BBL, members of the Congress can do so.
Santiago earlier noted that the draft BBL will raise constitutional problems in its current form, where the draft BBL will create a state within the Philippine state.
“At the end of the day, when I was talking to members of the Congress, I told them that they can dissect it (BBL) piece by piece,” he said.
“So, we will push, they will go through it, amend if there’s need to amend, pass, and present to the people, so there will be sufficient opportunity to show why this endorsed system is better,” Aquino said.
Aquino, however, earlier met with members of the House ad hoc committee on the BBL which resulted in the House panel dominated by his allies to restore provisions removed from the House draft of the BBL for being unconstitutional.
The meeting was held prior to the scheduled committee voting for the BBL and which resulted in the Palace handing down to the panel its version where eight provisions earlier removed were reinstated.
Aquino said it will be up to Senate President Franklin Drilon if there’s any need to hold a similar meeting in the Senate.
“I will wait for the go signal from the Senate President if there’s a need or not. Of course, there’s a part in me that wants to talks to them. I do not want, however, for them to say that I am interfering with them since they are (members of) an independent body,” he said.
“We have to strike a balance and what I can say is if they want to talk to me on this for them not to say that I’m trespassing, and they invite me to give an opinion in a meeting, why would we not do that? We are ready for that,” he added.
When asked to comment on the Senate committee report submitted by Santiago last week noting that the BBL would require cha-cha, Aquino replied that the report “is an opinion at this point.”
He also stressed that the BBL “will withstand the test of constitutionality.”
Lorena told Senate probers that OPAPP also conducted consultations of their own long before the peace pact with the MILF was signed.
He, however, was reminded by Escudero on the statements of MILF chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal made in one of the congressional hearings that their group was under the impression that they were negotiating with the entire branches of government. Joshua L. Labonera
Senate sees Palace move to ram in BBL Written by
Angie M. Rosales Monday, 25 May 2015 00:00
MARCOS APPEALS TO COLLEAGUES: BE INDEPENDENT
The head of the Senate panel drafting the chamber’s version of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) expects Malacanang to employ the same tactic done at the House of Representatives in exerting influence over allies to railroad the approval of the upper chamber’s version of the proposed bill.
Such an effort from the Palace could not be discounted
even as the sponsor stood firm on coming up with a well-crafted measure that
will introduce a substate in Mindanao.
“I could only hope that it will not happen,” Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., chairman of the Senate local government committee, said yesterday.
Marcos appealed to his colleagues to cross party lines in dealing with the issue on BBL in the Senate, noting what took place in the House of Representatives’ version which has been tainted heavily with politics and discarded what should have been the merits contained in the measure.
“I would just like to tell my colleagues in Congress we were elected by the people and whe have the responsibility to do what is in the interest of country. Let us not be afraid to do what is right.
We know what is right and proper, let us not retreat from doing what we believe is right,” he said.
“I presume that the Senate is more independent and I don’t believe that we will be swayed by any external pressure. Even if we disobey the Palace in doing the right thing, that is what we should do.
That is part of oath of office of each senator,” he said.
Marcos was vocal in expressing his dismay over the manner in which the House of Representatives came out with its version of the BBL as proposed amendments previously made in the committee level were practically junked.
“That bill passed by the (lower) house, it was clear, all
of the constitutional problems and infirmities which they tried to correct
were all lost and it was reverted to the original version which was clearly
constitutionally-infirm,” he said.
“What happened at the House of Representatives was saddening since they succumbed to politicking. What was needed, however, was not politics since the goal is lasting peace, and the debates should have been key in clearing up the points to see what is right or wrong and not what is politically expedient,” he said.
Marcos said he could only hope that the lower house, when the BBL is presented to the floor for debates, will discuss the bill based on its merits and will not toe the party line.
“I believe all my colleagues in the Senate would not want what happened at the House and I believe that they would want detailed discussions of the bill,” he said.
President Aquino held a meeting at least twice with House allies to discuss the BBL.
Marcos said there seems to be no similar meeting to take place anytime soon between members of the Senate and Aquino.
“Although of course I’m conscious in what they have been claiming as deadline (in passing the BBL), I can say that the Senate is not being rushed on this,” he said.
Marcos admitted that Senate President Franklin Drilon would often make a follow through on the progress of the BBL hearings in the upper chamber but he sees nothing wrong with it as it’s part of the job of the Senate leader to supervise the approval of pending bills.
Two more public hearings are set to be carried out before Marcos’ committee comes up with its panel report.
A hearing has been scheduled today to listen to representatives of the Sultanate of Sulu and the Indigenous People and another on June 3 get the sentiments of local government executives.
Still, Marcos would not commit to overseeing its approval in the plenary before Congress goes on sine die adjournment three weeks from now, saying he can not even predict what kind of a Senate version they will come up with especially after Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago’s committee on constitutional amendments, in its draft panel report, already pointed out the unconstitutionality of the BBL.
“We will try to come up in the committee level to have a credible version that can withstand the debates on the floor and will at the same lessen the discussions since the grounds would have been covered at the committee level. That would speed up the floor debates but I can’t predict what would come out during the debates if it would be different from the committee version,” he said.
Marcos also emphasized the need to address the BBL being not an all-inclusive peace process, a matter that was magnified in the course of conducting public hearings in the Senate.
“Nobody was consulted in drafting the framework agreement and comprehensive agreeement which were done only between the OPAPP (Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process) and the MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front).
That makes it not an agreement on Bangsamoro nor an agreement for the whole Muslim community but only an agreement between the OPAPP and the MILF,” he said.
BBL express at House resumes
At the House, following the BBL passage at the House ad
hoc committee, the controversial bill is not set to be debate anew in
connection with funding and taxation matters.
Davao City Rep. Isidro Ungab, chairman of the House appropriations committee and Marikina City Rep. Miro Quimbo, chairman of the House ways and means panel, said that they expect fresh issues that would be raised during the hearings.
“?We will ensure that there will be a thorough consideration and discussion of the appropriations provision of the BBL. We reiterate our aim to enact a law that is not only valid and lawful but also beneficial, useful and necessary,” Ungab said.
On the side of the ways and means committee, Quimbo said his panel will not stifle debates on issues that are going to be raised by his committee’s members.
“We will expect a lot of debate on the matter considering how sensitive this is and passionate people are regarding this. We will not stifle debate nor railroad its passage,” Quimbo said.
But Magdalo party-list Rep. Ashley Acedillo said he is expecting the two panels to “quickly” approve the BBL despite complaints of alleged railroading.
“I would consider it unusually fast and expeditious. Just as consistent with the haste that the BBL was approved in the ad hoc committee,” Acedillo said. The ad hoc committee voted 50 in favor, 17 against the bill. One abstained.
The committee rejected the proposal to delete the “opt-in” provision which allows neighboring territories to propose their inclusion in the Bangsamoro “at any time” through a petition of at least 10 percent of the residents and approval by a majority of qualified voters in the city or province in a separate plebiscite.
The panel also rejected the provision allowing the proposed territory to create its own a human rights body which will have jurisdiction over all human rights violations within the region.
The other four provisions include the creation of a separate Bangsamoro electoral body as the election body in the proposed Bangsamoro autonomous entity; the creation of a civil service office
similar to the functions of the Civil Service Commission (CSC); the establishment of a Bangsamoro Commission on Audit (COA); and the provision empowering the Bangasamoro government with primary responsibility over public order and safety in the covered territory by giving it control over the police.
The measure also provides that the Bangsamoro will be provided with annual block grants, which is tantamount to a “lump sum.”
The block grant is four percent of the 60 percent total revenue collection of the national government.
The amount is expected to reach more than P20 billion in 2016 when the Bangsamoro government is already in place.
Unlike the Internal Revenue Allotment of the local government critics said the block grant will not be subjected to Department of Budget and Management (DBM) guidelines.
Describing the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law by the House committee as a big leap forward, Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Governor Mujiv Hataman urged the Senate to take the proposed measure into the homestretch of what he said was “a race of
hope, a race for peace.”
“We are almost there,” Hataman said in a statement.
Hataman acknowledged that the amendments that the House Ad Hoc Committee members introduced to the proposed measure which he hope “will make for a better Bangsamoro Basic Law” that will entrench a genuinely autonomous region that is the best chance for peace and security in the south. Gerry Baldo
Noy ready to meet with senators on BBL By Aurea Calica (The Philippine Star) | Updated May 26, 2015 - 12:00am
Sen. Bongbong Marcos gestures during the Senate hearing on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law yesterday. Edd Gumban
MANILA, Philippines - President Aquino is ready to meet with senators to discuss the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law but will not back down on its merits and constitutionality while at the same hinting it should not be used for election purposes.
“We understand there are a lot of opportunities to call attention especially with the upcoming elections next year. But a sober discussion and coordination (and) scrutiny of BBL, I suppose will make them see that it will withstand the test of constitutionality,” Aquino said.
After inspecting Marikina Elementary School in the city yesterday, the President told reporters that he was waiting for the signal from Senate President Franklin Drilon as to when he could talk to the senators regarding the BBL.
“Of course, there is a part of me that wants to talk to them. I don’t want them to think I am meddling because they are an independent body,” he said.
“So we need to balance and the only thing I can say is if they really want to talk to me… if they invite me to give an opinion in a meeting, why are we not going to do it?” Aquino said.
Aquino noted opinions that the provisions of the draft BBL would entail Charter change but also pointed out that the advertisements from members of the Constitutional Commission (ConCom), who crafted the Constitution, support the BBL because it was adherent to the Charter.
“Many times when the lawyers argue (they say) read the book on ConCom debates. Here we don’t need to read the book because the living members of the ConCom themselves are the ones who are saying and explaining the constitutionality of the BBL,” Aquino said.
The President said that as he told members of the House of Representatives when he met with them on the BBL, they could go scrutinize it to bits and pieces but they should see its importance in bringing peace and development in Mindanao.
“In English they call it nickel and dime me to death. Now I also told them, a problem that is not addressed or not given any solution does not become small but has the potential to become bigger,” the President said.
Aquino said decreasing the opportunity to come up with a new formula to achieve peace in Mindanao would not contribute to the country’s growth.
“The new mode of governance there... should not wait until January... because come March, it’s election ban already, they cannot do anything anymore,” Aquino said.
The President said this was the reason why he was pushing for the lawmakers to amend whatever needed amending in the BBL and present it to the people after its passage.
Aquino said they should also have sufficient time to explain why the system the administration was proposing would be better.
The various sultanates and indigenous peoples’ groups in Mindanao attended the Senate public hearing yesterday to air their concerns that they might lose their identities and ancestral domain once the BBL is passed.
The groups also lamented why they were not consulted on the peace process between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), although they would want lasting peace in Mindanao.
The Sultanates of Sulu and North Borneo were represented by Sultan Esmail Kiram II, Datu Albi Julkarnain of the Council of Royal Datus, Princess Sitti Liddy Tañedo, Council of Royal Ladies; Michael Mastura of the Sultanate of Maguindanao and Sultan Panangang Pangandaman of the Sultanate of Bandar Ingud Maharlika.
At the resumption of the hearing conducted by the Senate committee on local government chaired by Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr., members of the Sultanate of Sulu also expressed concern on proposed change of the historic name of Sulu Sea to Bangsamoro Water.
The creation of the “council of leaders” also failed to satisfy Sultanate institutions, even as allocation of seats in the parliament under the Bangsamoro government was also tackled during the hearing.
“The changing of historic Sulu Sea to Bangsamoro Water is viewed by the Sultanate of Sulu as an alarming provision in relation to the Sabah claim,” said Princess Jacel Kiram-Hasan.
Marcos expressed discontent with the apparent failure of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPPAP) and the government negotiating panel to consult the sultanates and the indigenous people’s groups during the crafting of the BBL.
“How did you imagine that something as wide-raging, as important, as profound as the creation of a Bangsamoro territory in Muslim Mindanao possibly have succeeded without the support and participation of the sultanates,” Marcos asked.
Marcos is furious that the OPPAP failed to discuss the BBL with the sultanates.
Undersecretary Jose Lorena of OPPAP said the panel failed to consult the members of the Moro National Liberation Front, the Sultanates of Mindanao, the indigenous people, or concerned local government officials during the negotiations for the peace process.
Lorena said the MILF was representing the Bangsamoro people during the negotiation process.
He added that OPPAP conducted a two-tier consultation process, which was the actual negotiation with the MILF and the talks with the royal families of Mindanao, the IPs and other stakeholders which would be done during the legislation process.
Sen. Francis Escudero also slammed the OPPAP and the peace panel for apparently ignoring the sultanates, indigenous groups and other sectors in the crafting of the BBL.
“Did the OPPAP and peace panel make due diligence that these groups were consulted?” Escudero asked. He said the major issues would have not cropped up had the OPPAP been more forthright with concerned sectors.
At this point, Lorena again received a mouthful from the Senate committee local government chairman. “Essentially Mr. Lorena, we are doing your job for you. This is something you should have done during the process of negotiations so that when you presented the BBL to Congress then that version of the BBL incorporated into it all the views, opinions, suggestions from stakeholders,” Marcos said.
He said there were many misgivings identified during the hearings but the Sabah claim should not be set aside. He also questioned the designation of Malaysia as the third-party facilitator of the peace agreement.
“The presence of Malaysia as the facilitator has been questioned because they are not an objective observer and they are not a party of interest,” Marcos said.
The various indigenous peoples’ groups also arrived in full force to express concern about the BBL, reiterating their call to retain identity and preserve ancestral domain.
The groups batted for the recognition of an identity distinct from the Bangsamoro, and the delineation of ancestral lands of the IPs.
“It is a reinstatement of the rights and privileges under the IPRA law,” said Timuay Gumbala Gunsi, a member of the organization of Teduray and Lambangian Conference based in Upi, Maguindanao.
Datu Roldan Babelon, IPS general secretary, said they want their indigenous name retained, and not Bangsamoro, and that ancestral domains be excluded from the proposed Bangsamoro territories.
The House version of the proposed BBL will hurdle scrutiny by the Supreme Court, the chairman of the ad hoc committee that drafted such version said yesterday.
“I think it will survive a constitutional challenge in the Supreme Court because we have either removed or amended the provisions that we believed were constitutionally questionable,” Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez said in a television interview.
“We also changed or modified certain words and phrases that gave the impression that the proposed law would create a separate government or state,” he said.
He said among the provisions his committee deleted were those that would install a Wali or titular head of the envisioned Bangsamoro region, give the Bangsamoro chief minister primary disciplinary power over erring public officials in the region and require the Armed Forces of the Philippines to coordinate operations with the chief minister.
“A Wali is a ceremonial head of state. Since we are not creating a state, we removed the entire article on the installation of a Wali,” he added.
He pointed out that the committee upheld the constitutional authority of the Office of the Ombudsman over wayward public officials.
Rodriguez explained that in the case of the auditing, electoral, civil service, and human rights offices in the planned Bangsamoro region, it was made clear that these are regional extensions of the concerned constitutional agencies like the Commission on Audit and Commission on Elections.
“I wanted to have the provisions on these offices removed, but the proposal of my vice chairmen and several members to retain them prevailed. Thus, we had a compromise to make it clear that these are just extensions of constitutional commissions to make the provisions constitutional,” he said.
He said the phrase “Bangsamoro Basic Law” was changed to “Basic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region” to erase a possible connotation that lawmakers were creating a new nation or state.
“That is because ‘bangsa’ means nation, while ‘Bangsamoro’
could be misconstrued as ‘nation for the Moros.’ We are endorsing a proposed
law for the planned Bangsamoro autonomous region, not for a Moro nation,” he
With Christina Mendez, Jess Diaz, Jose Rodel Clapano, Roel
MANILA TIMES by Francisco Tatad
Aquino, China, Malaysia and the MILF May 26, 2015 10:45 pm FRANCISCO S. TATAD
by FRANCISCO S. TATAD
NEXT to President B. S. Aquino 3rd, two major threats confront the Republic. One is a possible armed confrontation with China; another is the possible dismemberment of the country by means of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law, which seeks to create an Islamic enclave for the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
Which comes first is not material now. Each is a horror in itself, but Aquino’s personal handling of both issues makes them extremely dangerous. They could explode when least expected.
We need a saner, more sober and more competent executive to handle both threats. But unless preceded or accompanied by some radical political change, the 2016 elections cannot hope to provide such an executive.
Let us examine these two issues.
China might decide to wage war on us The first threat: war with China. China is locked in maritime territorial dispute with the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, and Taiwan over some islands, reefs and shoals in the South China/West Philippine Sea.
To beef up its territorial claim, it has reclaimed at least seven land features, namely, Mischief Reef (Panganiban), Johnson South (Mabini), Gaven (Gavin), Cuarteron (Calderon), Kennan (Hughes), Eldad (Malvar), Fiery Cross (Kagitingan). The Philippines has protested these activities from the very beginning, to no avail.
In April 2012, a standoff ensued between the Philippine Navy and Chinese maritime vessels after a Philippine warship tried to arrest Chinese fishermen operating illegally around the Scarborough Shoal.
The standoff ended in July with China seizing control of the shoal. Subsequent Philippine efforts to get the Asean foreign ministers to say something about it failed when Cambodia, the host of that year’s foreign ministerial conference, rejected any reference to the dispute in the customary communiqué. Because of this, no communiqué was issued for the first time in Asean’s 45 years.
In January 2013, the Philippines announced it was seeking international arbitration against China’s “nine-dash line” in the South China, under the terms of the United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea. This was met with a very stern reaction from Beijing, which rejected the process and whatever results it might bring.
A virtual word war in the press ensued, which replaced all semblance of diplomacy between Manila and Beijing.
Both Aquino and his foreign secretary, Albert del Rosario, began to talk like master sergeants, and replied with uniform bellicosity to every statement from China, even from unnamed spokesmen and newspaper commentators.
As China intensifies its island-building activities in the
Spratlys, reports of US military air surveillance of these activities give
us the feeling that the next explosion is just around the corner.
Neither China nor the US could be unaware of its implications. We would be the first on the side of the US to get it, even though China may not want to nuke a country whose economy is dominated by Chinese-Filipinos, and whose richest dollar-billionaires on Forbes magazine’s annual listing are all ethnic Chinese.
However, Aquino might see in an armed confrontation between the two giants a heaven-sent opportunity to liquidate all his critics, cancel all democratic and electoral debts and remain indefinitely in office.
This is the biggest danger then—the enormous personal political profit from an insane military conflict for a deranged megalomaniac.
How did Philippine-Chinese relations come to such a pass?
The Philippine claim to the Spratlys has been there since the 1950s, and it did not disturb a single reef or corral at all. In 1968, the first Philippine troops landed and established themselves on five of the islands. In 1975, a 1,800 meter runway was built on Pagasa, the biggest of the Philippine possessions, 215 nautical miles from Palawan, 450 from Manila.
That same year the government granted a Philippine-Swedish consortium a contract to drill for oil on the Reed Bank. The exploration yielded gas and oil condensate. It drew diplomatic protests from Vietnam and China, but no bellicose or menacing exchanges between China and the Philippines.
In fact, in 1975, Manila and Beijing exchanged diplomatic relations in a distinctively festive spirit. I was part of the presidential entourage at the time, and it remains one of my most treasured moments.
The official photos of that visit remained preserved in the Great Hall of the People’s gallery.
On that occasion, the Chinese Communist Party was reported to have agreed to cut off its active support to the Communist Party of the Philippines, in exchange for the Philippines’ recognition of the One-China policy.
President Ferdinand Marcos, who was an absolute teetotaler, ended toasting his hosts with the famous Chinese mao tai, after then Vice Premier Deng Xiaoping, who was the high official in attendance, quoted the Chinese proverb saying, “Between two enemies one drop is too much, but between two friends no amount could ever be enough.”
Former President Marcos in 1978
In 1978, President Marcos issued a decree which declared the Kalayaan Island Group, its sea-bed, continental margin and air space, as belonging and subject to the sovereignty of the Philippines.
It also formally designated the area as a separate district and municipality of the province of Palawan, to be known as Kalayaan and to be administered directly by the Secretary of National Defense or such civilian or military official as may be designated by the President.
In May 1988, 147 Filipino voters on Pagasa, having constituted themselves into a barangay, elected their first barangay captain in the person of Alawi, a Filipino Muslim.
This completed the integration of Kalayaan into the Philippine archipelagic state. This had no adverse effect of Philippine-Chinese relations, which remained equable.
Malaysia map with parts of Philippines as its territory
The only unexpected development then came from Malaysia, when it announced its claim by issuing a map that showed its territory extending towards the southwestern tip of Palawan and enclosing parts of Kalayaan.
To Manila’s protest, Malaysia said the map was based on a bilateral agreement defining its sea-bed boundary with Indonesia.
In April 1980, Malaysia declared a 200-mile exclusive economic zone that overlaps areas claimed by the Philippines.
Compared to Vietnam, the Philippines had the most genial relationship with Beijing at the outset.
In 1974, China ejected Vietnamese troops from the Paracels, forcing them to withdraw to Pugad Island. In 1984, a joint Soviet-Vietnamese amphibious exercise was held on the northern coast of Vietnam.
China reacted by sending ten amphibious landing craft with some 2,000 marines on board to hold landing maneuvers on the Spratlys. Vietnam accused China of preparing to annex the islands and vowed to defend them. On March 4, 1988, the Chinese and Vietnamese navies clashed. China sank two Vietnamese vessels, resulting in 77 presumed deaths on the Vietnamese side.
By 2013, China’s attitude towards Vietnam tended to soften. High-level visits were exchanged, and the two countries agreed to set up hotlines between their navies and agriculture ministries to manage fishing incidents.
In May 2014, however, without any warning, China deployed its first indigenous deep-water drilling rig—the HYSY981—in waters around the Paracels, causing clashes between Vietnamese and Chinese vessels, in which a Vietnamese fishing boat was sunk.
This triggered a large standoff at sea involving dozens of Chinese and Vietnamese law enforcement vessels. This in turn fueled mammoth anti-China protests all over Vietnam, culminating in riots in mid-May.
China was forced to withdraw the rig in July, and to resume its charm offensive. This has remained since.
By contrast, relations with the Philippines have remained frosty, despite hopes that Aquino would continue the exemplary relations that flourished during Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s term.
Things soured early after eight Hong Kong tourists were killed in a bus hijacking incident in Manila, and Aquino refused to apologize for the tragedy.
Although China has not been able to justify its island-building activities in the Spratlys, it has been able to raise a lot of noise against the US military air surveillance of its reclamation activities.
It has thus been able to show that its real problem in the South China Sea is not the Philippines or any of the claimants to the Spratlys, but primarily the US, which continues to assert its position as the first power in the Asia Pacific. China wants to reverse this—or at least ensure its own place as the second global power in the region, without having to fight for it.
The competition is between two giants, and Aquino has managed to insert himself in it.
To Washington’s discomfort, he has insisted on pasting his government crudely at the tail of the American kite, even when not needed. Where his senator-grand uncle (Lorenzo Sumulong) once caused Nikita Khrushchev to bang his shoe on his desk at the UN Security Council in response to an unnecessary attack on the Soviets, PNoy has tried to call China’s attention to himself in the hope of pleasing the US. China tried to ignore him in the beginning, but he will not be ignored, at the cost of our Republic.
Bangsamoro Basic Law and Philippine balkanization
The second threat is the passage of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law and the eventual balkanization of the Republic.
have discussed this extensively in this space, and everybody else is talking about it. Only Aquino cannot seem to see the danger it poses to the State.
We are in deep shit with China because the Asian giant has chosen to claim parity with the US, and because Aquino insists on pasting his government at the tail of the American kite, even when there is no need for it.
If Aquino cannot seem to see it, the less likely is he to see that we are on the verge of being balkanized because insisted of standing for what is right, he has chosen to kneel before Malaysia which robbed us of Sabah when it was just a pile of mud, wild beast and forest, and would like to make the crime permanent now that Sabah has become an island of the greatest wealth. firstname.lastname@example.org
7 Responses to Aquino, China, Malaysia and the MILF
Thai anton says:
May 27, 2015 at 9:42 am
Actually Taiwan occupy the biggest island in the spratlys .
May 27, 2015 at 8:28 am
China will not be at war with the Philippines, 100% sure. It is only at war with our Dear Leader BS Noy.
After next election, attitudes will change.
Daniel I says:
May 27, 2015 at 6:41 am
Should teach you a lesson about getting too cozy with those Communist liars Better of dead than Communist red, Always enjoy this guy’s articles. They are so pro-Chinese they always make me laugh.
Mariano Patalinjug says:
May 27, 2015 at 4:58 am
Yonkers, New York 26 May 2015
I compliment columnist Francisco S. Tatad for weighing in at length on the History of the territorial dispute between the Philippines and China over those islands in the Spratlys group which the Philippines asserts are parts of its territory under International Law [UNCLOS].
Now Manila Times readers can have a pretty good idea of how this China-Philippines territorial dispute started and where it is now.
The Philippines is in no position to win a hot war against China over those disputed islands. The Philippines, militarily a chihuahua compared to China’s 800-pound gorilla, is no fool. And that is why the Philippines, a member in good standing of the United Nations, a peace-loving member, went to the UN Permanent Arbitral Tribunal of the Law of the Seas [ITLOS] in Hamburg for a peaceful Resolution of its dispute. There it has high hopes that it will win the case against China.
But it is not the Philippines alone which has a vital stake in the South China Sea. Recall that time and time against, high US officials have publicly declared and given notice to the whole world that THE UNITED STATES HAS A VITAL NATIONAL INTEREST IN KEEPING COMPLETELY OPEN THE SEA LANES STARTING FROM THE MIDDLE EAST THROUGH WHICH OIL PASSES AND ENDS AS FAR EAST AS THE WEST COAST OF THE UNITED STATES. An estimated $5 trillion worth of trade yearly passes through this area.
It should be clear to China in particular that the United States will not allow it to impede navigation in this critical area. If China does not heed the US’s warning, then a hot war could be inevitable.
MARIANO PATALIJUG Lapulapu1927@yahoo.com
Anima A. Agrava says:
May 27, 2015 at 4:24 am
But our leaders in non-govt sectors are all–except some bishops–so lazy or apathetic to the danger BSAquino himself and his coterie pose to or Republic and our national security. It seems as if Lucifer has taken over their minds, as Lucifer has taken over Aquino’s being.
We have to continue being close to the Holy Trinity while doing what we can in the material sphere.
Senator Marcos and PNoy wll have a talk. The later will surely try to sway Marcos from his stand that the BBL bill as it is now must be made (1) inclusive to include the inputs and desires of the very many groups that Deles and Ferrer dd not talk to, must likely under PNoy’s behest, and (2) compliant to the Philippines Constitution.
Let’s pray that Sen. Marcos is not swayed by the Millions of pesos PNOY will ffeer hiim.
May 27, 2015 at 2:42 am
Maraming napaniwala sa drama ni Aquino! Upang masunod lang niya ang utos ng US,hinayaan niyang malipol ang SAF 44 sa kamay ng MILF,dahil sa pagsunod dito,mga palpak na helicopter at mga bala na dahilan ng maraming pagkasawi saating sundalo! Ito ang pangulo na hindi naging maayos ang pakikitungo sa mga pangulo ng ibang bansa!wala kang nabalitaan naging malapit sa kanya! Ito ang kaisaisang pangulo na naging masyadong mapagmataas at laging handang kaladkarin ang bansa sa giyera! Walang kadi kadeplomasya sa katawan puro kayabangan ang nasa bunbunan!!
Matthew Parkes says:
May 27, 2015 at 12:41 am
China can buy every single politician in this country for a very low price. It would certainly be cheaper than actually attacking this nation… not that they would need much in the way of materiel considering how few of the nation’s major pieces of military equipment actually work. Oh, and then there is the problem of the lack of ammunition as well.
No, if China wants the Philippines then they can buy it from Filipino traitors just as the Japanese did in WWII, the Malaysians did with Cory, and the Malaysians are doing again with the latest Aquino traitor.