Pure madness

By Conrado de Quiros

The new arrangement is called “Agreement on Enhanced Defense Cooperation,” and Defense Undersecretary Pio Lorenzo Batino assures it is “80-percent done.” As though that news would elate us.

Read on…


  1. Conrado is one of my favorite writers. He calls it straight, and indeed, I think most Americans would agree it would be madness for the U.S. to engage in another Iraq, a misguided attempt to fight other people’s battles for them. It is madness for the US to coddle the Philippines, to try to represent people who are fundamentally ungrateful and incapable of coming to their own defense. They are too busy fighting each other like a pack of hyenas after the taxpayer hide.

    • The particulars of the agreement are not material as Conrado already has it pegged that Philippine military leaders will bow to Americans no matter what the words say about “access”. His quibble is as much with Filipino subservience as America pushing her interests.

      I merely voice the view that most Americans don’t care about rocks in the ocean near the Philippines. They don’t want their sons and daughters engaged in another fight where the fighting partner is simply not committed to fighting.

      Here is the sequence: Philippines files ITLOS in a few days. Shortly thereafter, China takes over the rusty hulk of a presence that represents the Philippine commitment to defense of the rocks, and sends the soldiers there back home if one piece, if they are smart and don’t shoot when overrun. The US and Philippines raise all kinds of verbal ruckus and Chinese generals laugh.

      • manuel buencamino

        Joe, I meant the withold comment remark for de Quiros. Nobody, not even the negotiating panel and their principals, knows what is in the agreement because it has not been finalized and signed. De Quiroz was working on assumptions and so is every critic and advocate of the agreement. The opening line of Lenny Bruce’s autobiography was “Filipinos come quick.” De Quiroz just lent credence to Bruce’s observation. His column was the perfect example of premature ejaculation.