Hillary statements on RP-US relations and corruption, pure double-talk – Anakbayan
Nov. 13, 2009
Youth group Anakbayan picketed U.S State Secretary Hillary Clinton’s visit to the University of Santo Tomas today, criticizing her pronouncements yesterday as “detrimental and an insult to the Filipino people”.
In a press conference held yesterday, Clinton defended the Visiting Forces Agreement saying that it is an “important expression of our partnership that is based on mutual respect and mutual interest “. She also condemned corruption, saying it has a “corrosive effect on society”. Previously, she also claimed that her 24-hour visit is an expression of solidarity with the victims of the recent string of typhoons that have hit the country.
However, Anakbayan chairperson Ken Ramos blasted Clinton’s comments as ‘double-talk’, saying that concrete policies and actions of the Obama Administration towards the Philippines showed values opposite to those mentioned in her statements.
“The VFA is proof that RP-US relations are based on disrespect and self-interest. Hillary Clinton is conveniently forgetting the deplorable human rights record of U.S troops, not only in the Philippines but all of the world as well, out of their need for military bases in South-east Asia.”
He cited widespread human rights violations committed by U.S troops based in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as many cases of rape committed by U.S troops based in Japan and South Korea against local women.
Ramos also twitted Clinton for her statement on corruption, saying that it contrasted with the continued support given by the U.S government to the Arroyo Administration.
“Why then is Hillary supporting one of the most corrosive Administrations in history, the one that gave birth to the ZTE-NBN deal, the Northrail Project, among others? It’s a wonder she didn’t melt being near one of the most ‘corrosive’ presidents in Philippine, or even world, history” he said.
He mentioned a previous report from the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan which said members of the U.S Senate are pushing for additional U.S funding to the Armed Forces of the Philippines, an institution which has committed more than a thousand cases of extra-judicial killings and enforced disappearances against government critics since Gloria Arroyo came to power.
Finally, Ramos deplored the violence committed against several protesters who picketed the Marikina school where Clinton gave a speech to students and residents of nearby communities. He said the violence was a result of an ‘overly paranoid’ security plan by the U.S Embassy and the Arroyo government.
“She claims to express solidarity for ‘typhoon-battered Philippines’, yet her visit has led to the battering of the ‘freedom of peaceful assembly’ here in our country” he said.
“Clearly, Clinton does not stand for the change we, the Filipino people, need” concluded Ramos. ###