Marcos Jr. spoke with a forked tongue in Singapore

In an apparent attempt to project his regime as being caught in the middle of the rivalry between the US and China, Marcos Jr. succeeded only in further exposing himself as a willing puppet of US imperialism in one of his talks during the 21st International Institute for Strategic Studies Shangri-la Dialogue in Singapore last June 2.

By saying that the “continued (sic) stability of this region requires China and the US to manage that rivalry in a responsible manner”, Marcos Jr. was speaking with a forked tongue. Marcos Jr.’s speech, filled with lofty rhetoric about maintaining regional peace and stability while warning China against ‘acts of war’, rings hollow against the backdrop of expanding US military presence on Philippine soil.

His regime is enabling the US to heighten its warmongering in the South China Sea by allowing the Philippines to become a US military launching pad that continues to provoke an armed response from China. The recent Balikatan war exercises led by the US conducted on Philippine territory, which shamelessly mocked the country’s sovereignty and the people’s security, are the most recent glaring demonstrations of that US puppetry.

Marcos Jr.’s attempt to portray himself as a neutral actor caught between two imperialist rivals is nothing short of farcical. His administration has consistently aligned with American strategic objectives, further dragging the whole Philippines and its unwilling people into a possible war with the US’ enemies, and no amount of double-talk will hide that.

The people of the ASEAN region desire long-lasting peace and stability, especially in the context of the highly contested waters in the South China Sea. However, US prodding and continued military operations in the Philippines undermine these aspirations and serve as the biggest threat to peace in the region. Genuine peace and security in the ASEAN will only be possible if it is free from the aggression and transgressions of imperialist powers.