|Jonathan De la Cruz|
Reports have it that in addition to the expanded “access arrangements” which the US military has asked to be worked out for US forces under the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) as America “pivots” to Asia, we are now being told that the Pentagon is also planning to set up an integrated “coastal watch system” for the country.
At first blush, that system which has yet to be firmed up may be a blessing for us given our extensive coastline and inadequate resources to patrol our shores. But it may well turn out to be a magnet which can suck us deeper into the front lines of an increasingly deadly cat and mouse game of the superpowers in our midst — the United states and China.
Here’s what a Pentagon official, a Maj. Catherine Wilknison said about the said US initiative: “We are at the planning stages of assisting the Philippines with a National Coast Watch Center. The center is designed to create an overall picture of what is going on in Philippines’ territorial waters. Right now we are discussing a range of options and the details have yet to be finalized. Radars may be eventual part of the package but it hasn’t been determined yet.”.... MORE
Source: The Daily Tribune