Tuesday, May 17, 2011

PM calls for scrapping of VFA in rally vs. US warship visit

Press Release
May 17, 2011

The Partido ng Manggagawa called for the scrapping of the Visiting Forces Agreement in a rally at the US Embassy this morning against the visit of the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson. “The USS Carl Vinson is an instrument of American imperialist aggression and its visit makes the PNoy government an accomplice in US military adventures. Its docking in the waters just off the Mall of Asia recalls the Mock Battle of Manila Bay that signaled US colonization of the Philippines,” declared Renato Magtubo, PM chair.

PM joined the Scrap VFA movement in the rally and the groups appealed to the Senate to repudiate the controversial military access agreement with the US.

“Among other reasons, the VFA flaunts the Philippine Constitution which bans nuclear weapons in our country and mandates an independent foreign policy. The visit of the nuclear capable USS Carl Vinson which just came from the latest US military adventure in Pakistan with a unilateral raid against Osama bin Laden contradicts all these provisions of the Constitution,” Magtubo asserted.

He added “Imagine an agreement such as the VFA breaking the supreme law of the land and yet PNoy leads in defending the visit as allowed under the access agreement.”

PM had earlier voice suspicion at the hush-hush tour of the aircraft carrier by President Benigno Aquino III and his top officials last Saturday. The group believes that a top secret agenda was discussed and speculated that it may be about more concessions about American access to Philippines as per the VFA and increased US intervention in the war against Muslim insurgents as a follow through to bin Laden’s assassination.

PM also warned at a repeat of the Subic rape case with thousands of US servicemen having rest and recreation in the country until tomorrow.

“Malacanang had made much of the fact that many Filipino-Americans are serving as crew of the USS Carl Vinson. But if Carl Vinson, a segregationist and militarist who had served for 50 years as congressman from the southern state of Georgia, were still alive he would have raised a howl at African-Americans and Asian-Americans holding positions in the aircraft carrier,” Magtubo explained. He revealed that Vinson was a staunch defender of segregation in the Southern US even as the civil rights movement for blacks gained ground in the 1950’s.

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