• Look at China’s offer with a smile and eyes wide open


    At a meeting on Monday Dec. 19 in Malacañang, between President Rodrigo Duterte, Chinese ambassador to Manila Zhao Jianhua, and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, it was reported that China offered the Philippines a $14.4 million grant and a $500-million soft loan as assistance for the government’s war on drugs and terrorism.

    Secretary Lorenzana disclosed some details about the offer to the media following the meeting. The Chinese embassy declined to disclose details about the offer despite media requests for comment.

    Absent an official announcement on the matter, we think the best approach for Filipinos to take at this point is just to smile at the Chinese gesture of generosity. We should not speculate on why China has made the offer.

    We think Secretary Lorenzana already went too far when he told the media:

    The Philippines might use the $14 million grant to acquire small arms, fast boats, or night-vision goggles, and that the deal might be finalized by year-end.

    The Philippines will get next year the $500 million long- term soft loan, which it will then use in fighting illegal drugs and terrorism.

    Hammering out these matters is outside Lorenzana’s authority.

    It’s important to raise this issue now, because the Department of Foreign Affairs ( DFA) is seriously considering filing a diplomatic protest against Beijing for installing sophisticated weapon systems in several disputed islands in the South China Sea ( SCS).

    In an interview with the Kyodo News agency, Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. said Manila would consider other diplomatic initiatives and legal processes allowed under international law on Beijing’s renewed provocative move.

    Likewise, the DFA through its official spokesman has said that the Philippines will not set aside, but rather uphold the ruling of the Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) that ruled in favor of our country in its dispute with China on the SCS. This despite China’s continued insistence that it has sovereignty over the disputed waters.

    There is a world of difference in the way our two countries see this highly important international issue. But it worries us that when he was in China President Duterte said he was setting aside our victory against China in the Hague. When asked why he had done that, Mr. Duterte replied “Because I am Chinese.” He always makes these kind of statements and then calls us, media people, crazy for believing in what he says. But he forgets that China, being the more experienced by up to 3,000 years as a sovereign nation, kingdom and empire, can use—and has used — loose words like this to its advantage against kings and presidents.

    Finally, we would like to point out that there could be an overtone of sarcasm and irony in China‘s providing guns to the Duterte government in fighting its war on illegal drugs. This suggests that the country needs Chinese guns to kill 4 million drug users in our country. This is surreal and grim. More so because the known source of harmful and illegal drugs is China. The Chinese must be laughing secretly at us.


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    1. FYI’s comment – No wonder the Philippines is now the sick man of Asia. You can’t even differentiate the root cause of drug problem. Why other countries in Asia don’t have such a big drug problem?

    2. Secretary Lorenzana should resign. because he is easy to buy and bribe. He just took the downpayment for land and property they took.

    3. It is a good offer of China to the Philippines. It could have been better if China offered to return the stolen built islets for the Filipinos. It does not need a rocket scientist to figure out that China is playing monkey to the Filipinos.There is no such thing as a free lunch. Let us use our IQ.

    4. First, you can’t be serious to imply that the drug trafficking in the country is a China state sanctioned activity. You’ve got to prove that otherwise, you will sound ignorant by alluding that the Chinese government must be laughing secretly at us. You just lack analyses which is ironic because a column was published through your newspaper on the reasons why the China need to militarized the South China Sea. They are encircled by the US with bases that can use missiles and it is the only sea that is deep enough to use for underwater attack using missile weapons. They need to protect their country. It is the US that has history of attacking other countries. This article is very loose. Up the standards please!

    5. Para kasing batang musmos si Du30, binigyan ni Xi ng kendi, tigil na iyak. Indeed, China has its cake and eats it, too. Let’s just see how far Du30’s ploy (of playing childish with the Intsik) will go.

    6. There is what more than what meets the eye in this deal.

      So much seems to be inconsistent and irrelevant.

      The Philippines must draw the line now and insist on the Hague ruling.

      We have so much to loss if we disregard the Hague ruling.

    7. The Chinese must be laughing secretly at us.

      It’s a great business plan for China.

      Make and supply the drugs
      Give free money (14 million dollars) to the Philippines so the police can buy guns to kill drug users
      Provide huge loans (500 million dollars) that the Philippines will be paying off for decades.

      China creates the problem then gives loans to the Philippines so they can fight the problem China made.


      • Look what happened to Nigeria . They were granted so called soft loans by China and is now having difficulty paying for it.
        China is using economic aggression.

      • “…so they can fight the problem China made”

        China, the nation, the politburo and more than
        a billion people are neither the Chinese Triad nor the Chinese Mafia.

        Take your spin somewhere else.
        If “the Chinese must be laughing secretly at us,”
        you wouldn’t know.

        And if they are not, you wouldn’t know