In one of the worst foreign policy disasters of the Obama administration, the president finally made his way to the Philippines this week to celebrate our newly reacquired friendship, including the new 10-year mutual defense pact of critical regional importance in the South China Sea.
For over a year, IVN has been following the Filipino government’s request to reopen American naval bases to patrol critical shipping bottle-necks in the South China Sea, as well as increase overall American presence.
A ten-year deal was signed last May, which could have been a crowning moment in Obama’s foreign policy, but has instead become a symbol of his lack of follow through.
With America balking, and the Chinese presence growing, the Filipinos turned to the Japanese–historical adversaries–to boost their mutual protection in the region.
Since then, China has built artificial islands in the South China Sea, expanding their territorial claims, increased their blue-water navy capabilities, and formed several key alliances within the South China Sea region and elsewhere.
While some in Congress want to define Obama’s foreign policy strength (or lack thereof) on his dealings with ISIS or Russia, this is a significant failure — a gift of friendship in a very critical area of the world was given to us and we more or less ignored it for a year.
So while Obama poses this week for photo ops, warns the Chinese from further expansion, and claims a victory in his foreign policy, let’s just call it what it really is — too little, too late.
Photo Source: Reuters