First Year Blog Anniversary and the Future of the AFP Modernization

Photo courtesy of The Facey Family thru Flickr
Photo courtesy of The Facey Family thru Flickr

My “rhk111’s Military and Arms Page” blog celebrates its first year anniversary this month. I can’t exactly recall when I founded this site, and WordPress doesn’t have the tools to let me find out. Anyway, I first started blogging about military stuff again one after the other on my “rhk111’s Blogspot” site before finally spinning off this blog dedicated to military stuff and matters.

The biggest reason for me writing a lot again about military topics is because of President Benigno Aquino’s (or PNoy) decision to start buying brand new military hardware for the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and buying a LOT of it. For the longest time under the three different administrations of Fidel Ramos, Joseph Estrada and Gloria Arroyo, we hardly bought any meaningful stuff. They were always saying, “… there’s no money … there’s no money … there’s no money …” And then PNoy comes along and makes a fool out of all of them by buying all of these stuff.

He did this by using “Honest Governance” which lessened corruption and allowing more money to be available to buy other stuff, and by prioritizing the budget for military procurement instead of putting almost all of the money to civil projects like his predecessors did so their lawmakers and local government official allies could skim off most of it. He set aside a budget of P 85 Billion for the AFP Modernization for the duration of his administration.1

Before, it was pointless for me to write about stuff because we weren’t really buying anything worthwhile, hence all the effort would go to waste as I would be basically just fantasizing about them. But now that we are actually buying stuff, there is a good chance that some of the stuff I dream about would actually come true.

‘Next Administrations’
With only two more years left under the PNoy Administration, much of the modernization efforts should be/are being concentrated not on what to buy anymore, but on actually making the planned buys happen. I hope they all push thru, and I hope to see a little bit more sense of urgency on the part of the AFP to ensuring that not only will the biddings be completed but that orders are made during these last 24 months.

Looking further out, I hope that the next two Administrations will continue the AFP Modernization program, and here are what I hope at the very least they will be buying:

  • 2016-2022 Administration
    – Twelve brand-new Advanced Multi Role Fighter Aircraft
    – Two brand-new General Purpose Frigates
    – One second-hand Coastal Submarine (for Submarine Operational Experience and Training)
  • 2022-2028 Administration
    – Two brand-new greater than 1,000 ton Diesel Electric Submarines
    – Two brand-new General Purpose Frigates

‘Dark Future’
However, I do foresee a somewhat “dark” future (both literally and figuratively) in terms of the AFP Modernization in the next (2016-2022) Administration, and that is in the person of Jejomar Binay. “Dark” literally due to color of his skin which, unfortunately, also what makes him more easy to identify with the common man; And “dark” figuratively as there are indications that a Binay Presidency will mean a big speed bump to the AFP Modernization. Of course, a Binay Presidency is not a sure thing, but he is the CURRENT frontrunner in terms of the surveys to be the next President, and not only that, it doesn’t seem to be an even close match as Binay has a VERY comfortable 25% lead over his closest rival as per a recent Pulse Asia survey result.2

Binay will not be good for the AFP Modernization for a number of reasons. First is that he has expressed the willingness to compromise with China on the issue of our territories in the Spratly’s Islands, favoring policies like “Joint Exploration” with them,3 the same strategy that President Arroyo made with China. That’s not really a bad thing per se, in fact, I am now sort of leaning towards that due to the reluctance by the US to come to our aid on the issue of the Spratly’s Islands.4 But my biggest fear is that he will use this as an excuse to slow down the AFP Modernization. If the threat is lessened, then he will just say there is no need to buy more stuff for the AFP.

This fear is supported by the fact that his lucky (lucky because despite having no decent qualifications to speak of she is now a Senator) daughter Nancy Binay had said in public that she favors a military that is focused more on Humanitarian and Disaster Relief (HADR) than external defense.5 Hence, it is likely that a Binay Presidency will likely bring us back to the dark days of the Ramos, Estrada and Arroyo Presidencies, those long years of mediocre arms procurement for our armed forces.

‘Ray of Hope?’
There is a little bit of a ray of hope even if Binay does end up slowing down the AFP Modernization, and that is he may prove us wrong in our negative expectations of him. I am basing this on the fact that, I will admit now, I was wrong about PNoy. If you’ve read my other blogs, you will know that before he became President, I was pretty critical of him, I didn’t think he would be a good President. I thought he would be an incompetent President, but he has now proven me and other doubters wrong about him. It’s not a perfect Presidency, he did miss the mark a couple of times also, but overall the good outweighed the bad.

Perhaps all the criticism helped drive him to strive to be a better President, but whatever it is, in the same vein Binay could end up a better President than expected. Then again he may not, and that is a pretty big chance to take for the fate of the country for the next 6 years of his Presidency. Personally, I don’t think I am wrong this time about Binay, especially if you look at how “notorious” are the people he considers as “allies” now: Toby Tiangco, the lapdog of Gloria Arrovo; Joseph Estrada, a CONVICTED plunderer; And Jinggoy Estrada, one of the main accused in the corruption of the Presidential Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).

‘Parting Shot’
The fate of how our country will be run under the next President will be in the hands of the ‘Bobotante‘ masses, whether our country will continue to improve in military strength or not. Of course I could still be wrong and things will just turn out fine even if Binay wins, but why take the chance at all? Despite all these equipment bought by PNoy, we have still a LONG way to go before we can come up with a credible deterrence, mainly because our adversary is so formidable, the second biggest economy and one of the most powerful militaries in the world right now. Hence I don’t think we can afford to have an Administration slow down our modernization plans from hereon.

In the meantime, all we can do now is just try to enjoy our “Season in the Sun” of AFP Modernization as much as possible, it may not last that long …

Jejomar Binay. Soon the Dark Lord will be upon us. Photo courtesy of the Academic.ru website
Jejomar Binay. Soon the Dark Lord will be upon us. Photo courtesy of the Academic.ru website

SOURCES:

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70 thoughts on “First Year Blog Anniversary and the Future of the AFP Modernization”

  1. Politician can easily win in the areas of Mindanao with a lot of cash to bribe the voters! I grew up in Zamboanga peninsula. and I saw in my own two eyes clearly! How the election works their.. they will exchange their votes for cash..

    1. That’s exactly what Gloria did, remember the “Hello, Garci” scandal? I don’t think PNoy can afford to do something like that, after all, his advocacy is “Daang Matuwid (Straight Path)”, hence if he cheats, the people are never going to forgive him, even if it will be for their own good. Besides, once you start cheating, you will quickly lose control of your people in terms of corruption. They will just say, the boss is doing it, and if he fires me I will just rat on him or her. I think this is what happened to Gloria with that “Hello, Garci” issue. Since then, it was downhill for her in terms of corruption for the last 6 years of her term …

  2. HI RHK, congratulations nevertheless….

    You (and even your blog fans) may not be aware but the strong message in this CRUSADE blog may have reached the awareness and consciousness of some important ‘audience’.

    You bet…

    1. Thanks, Deewii. I’m just glad to be able to have the opportunity to share my thoughts about these military technology stuff, its always been a hobby of mine …

  3. Congrats IDOL!! Happy ONE YEAR Anniversary! I don’t mind if his the leading frontrunner for Presidential election 2016.. Remember! PNOY’s name was not on the SWS survey in 2008. 2 years before the 2010 election.. As long as we have a total of 7 qualified voters in our family!! ASA PA!! di makaka isa yan samin… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rF-fsFlBnxQ

    1. In fairness, PNP ang me problema, hindi AFP. Kaya lang I’m just wondering, why did the Neps insist on the AK-47? The M-16s are easier to get, pero AKs talaga hanap nila. Baka siguro para talagang feeling Communist Revolutionary na AKs ang armas lagi …

      1. RHK, i believe it is more of the same. Hearsays tell me that AK47 are normally issued to a “somebody” in the organization ranking no lower than a squad leader or somebody who commands at least 5 comrades….

        So if there are 45 AK47 recovered from combats and surrenderees, the Neps (as you call them) lost that much frontline leaders since the firearms were lost in the PNP armory…

      2. So its more of a status symbol within the organization? Interesting. However, there are still at least 950 more out there. Are they using 5.56 x 45 mm ammo for their AKs, or the original 7.62 x 39 mm ammunition? If it is the latter, where are they getting their ammo? 7.62 x 39 mm ammo is more difficult to find than the 5.56 x 45 mm ammunition here in the Philippines …

      3. Interesting indeed… well, at least, the AFP can have a barometer for the “kills” they are gonna get.

  4. Congrats. Sincerely hope binay rethinks his position. He is a coward, marine reservist pa naman siya. Does he really think china will keep its word? If he has brains he would know that. When we appease them do you think they will leave? Stupid dark lord. Even if we jointly explore the islands does he think they will give us equal share? That is the height of stupidity.

  5. South Korea is reportedly scheduled to commission TWO (2) Incheon-class Frigates this year, one in OCTOBER 2014, and another one in DECEMBER 2014. Now, Secretary Gazmin said that the Pohang will be handed over to us on OCTOBER 2014 as the new Incheon-class ship replaces it.

    Now, what about when the 2nd Incheon-class ship is retired on December 2014? It is likely they will retire another Pohang. If so, who gets it, then? Will it be sold/given away to another country? Or do we have a chance of getting it also?

    My guess: If they win the bidding for the 2 new Frigates of the Philippine Navy, we could end up getting the 2nd Pohang also …

    1. This news item confirms it: Incheon-class “Gyeonggi” is going to be commissioned in October 2014, while the other Incheon-class ship, the “Jeonbuk” is going to be commissioned in December 2014. So Sokor retires a Pohang in October, but what about when the Jeonbuk enters service in December, who gets the Pohang they will retire then?

      http://www.navyrecognition.com/index.php/news/defence-news/year-2013-news/november-2013-navy-naval-forces-maritime-industry-technology-security-global-news/1355–hyundai-heavy-industries-launched-the-third-incheon-class-frigate-roks-jeonbuk.html

      1. if this is true then we have 2 hamiltons, 2frigates, 2pohangs, + one more hamilton? thats 7 or 6 ships in the span of 4 years? not to mention the 2 ssvs. to make it even why not get the maestrele that italy was selling or get another hamilton. the next phase should be arming them appropriately and ship vs ship vs sub warfare training. bigay na yan frigate contract sa sokor para may buy one take one tayo.

      2. PNoy has already decided, hence no chance anymore to get those Maestrales from Italy. However, it seems a greener pasture is available soon, with South Korea retiring around 29 ships and replacing them with 19 more capable ships …

  6. My hope for the last 2 years of Pnoy & the next 2016-2022 Administration are…
    1. An assembly / manufacturing plant of MRFs/Attack Helicopters for the PAF.
    2. An assembly / manufacturing plant of Missile Boats/MPACs for the Phil. Navy
    3. An assembly / manufacturing plant of AFVs & APCs for the Phil. Army .
    4. An assembly / manufacturing plant of AAVs for the Phil. Marines.
    5. An assembly / manufacturing plant of AAMs, SAMs, ASMs, SSMs & Radar systems.

  7. South Korea is going to retire all of their Pohang and Ulsan class ships by 2020 and replace them with the Incheon class. With 1 Pohang class ship allocated to the Philippines, that leaves 20 Pohangs plus 9 Ulsans for a total of 29 ships to be retired from 2015 to 2020 and be replaced by 19 Incheons.

    This means starting 2015 South Korea could end up retiring an average of 6 ships per year and commissioning 3 ships per year to replace them. That’s a bonanza of ships during the next couple of years, it will be like the “Black Friday Sale” in the US where buyers end up scratching and biting all over each other to get at the bargain products.

    I think the Philippines should start re aligning their budgets for them, those ships will not be given away for free by Sokor, we will likely have to buy them. We will also need to prepare our training programs to man that many ships within a short period of time if we are getting them …

    1. You think we’ll have enough to actually purchase all those ships? I’d be happy if we got half of them. Especially the Ulsans.

      1. A couple of problems with this. First is that we will need to realign our budgets to be able to get as many ships as we can from this windfall, and that maybe an issue. Second, we also need to realign our training programs so that we will have enough people who will be competent enough to man these ships. Third is that if the Dark Lord wins, I don’t think he will spend money to get most of these ships.

        Note that an opportunity like this comes only once every 30 years as that is the timeline that South Korea has set for their ships, they won’t be replacing their Incheons until around 2050 na. SAYANG if we miss this window, but then again, beggars can’t be choosers.

        In the 1990s South Korea started retiring their Chamsuri class boats, and we got a windfall out of that, around 8 boats now known as the Batillo class of boats in the Philippine Navy. These ships are much smaller and cheaper than the Pohangs and Ulsans hence they were given away almost for free to us then. Other countries like Bangladesh, Kazakhstan, Timor, etc. also got a couple.

      2. Maybe with the recent peace treaty down south we can shift funds from the army to the navy. Internal threats being less of an issue than our present China problem.

      3. Nah, I don’t think its a good idea to shift funds from other branches of the AFP. If you look at the allocation of the budget for the P 85 Billion that PNoy set, it was “Hating Kapatid”, meaning equal portions for all of them. The budget will have to come from somewhere, it is up to the President to find out. But if the “Dark Lord” wins, forget about it …

      4. I’m not at as well versed on Filipino politics (I don’t live in the PH), but is a Presidential change really that bad? I assume that any president would have advisers telling him to take advantage of our relationship with S. Korea and position ourselves to grab these decommissioned ships.

      5. Yes, it can be that bad. If you take a look at my blog about Presidential Procurements, you can see that this period of buying a lot of military stuff is the exception rather than the rule in the last 30 years. The President is the Commander in Chief, and if the CIC says the money is better spent elsewhere like Civic and HADR projects, then nothing much that the AFP can do about that.

        Of course he does still have some accountability to the Filipino people, but kicking him out is not easy, it will have to be either thru Impeachment or a Coup, both of which are very messy. And you are talking about a President here who has been voted into office via popular mandate. Hence, whatever the President decides, the everybody will likely just suffer thru it. There will be the noisy ones, but they will likely be just the minority and won’t be able to achieve much. The same thing happened during the Arroyo regime …

      6. Hasn’t the increased aggression by China changed public opinion? Will the public accept a president that allows a further weakening of the armed forces that results in a loss of territory in the Spratlys.

      7. Yes, a vast majority of the Filipino populace is against China’s aggression, but unfortunately, and I am ashamed to say this, but the Filipino masses vote stupidly. I really don’t know what drives them to vote for a person to President, but definitely its not based on “logic”. For example, Jojo Binay favors relaxing the tension in the relations between China and the Philippines, while her Senator daughter has publicly insisted on a HADR-focused AFP. And yet if you look at the polls, Binay has a very comfortable 25% lead over his nearest rival.

        So while Filipinos hate China, it doesn’t seem to extend to who to vote to in office. I don’t know why, maybe its the stupidity and inability to foresee complex political consequences, but that’s how it is. And that is why this country up to now is still mainly a basketcase, I’m afraid to say.

      8. That’s depressing. The Chinese will undoubtedly try to pick off the weakest link from the Japan, Vietnam, and Philippines pseudo alliance.

        Do you think Binay will change course if China makes another land grab on his watch?

      9. I think that without the US’ help, China will get their way in the Spratly’s Islands one way, or the other. As for Binay and China, they will likely go into those “Joint Exploration” type of agreements, but of course eventually such agreements will just end up being one-sided with China having the upper hand. However, that’s how it is for living next to an authoritarian superpower like China who insists “Might is Right”.

        What I don’t like about the setup will be the agenda to keep the Philippines’ external defense weak. Binay will likely use the formula used by most of his predecessors to keep the military happy, and that is to keep buying stuff not directly related to external defense, which are Transport Helicopters, Large Transport Aircraft, Armored Personnel Carriers, etc.

  8. CONGRATULATION RHK111..i will say these. to those politicians who dont care about the AFP modernization and allowed a foreign country to grab part of our territory is guilty of “TREASON”. HISTORY WILL JUDGE THEM, even their grandchildren will judge them for their inaction. In their grave their souls will becomes restless because their children and future generation will suffer the irreparable loss and shame of what they have done. when we loss our territory not even an emergency session was held.in order to address the problem. hope they will realize the urgency of this CALL.

    it is independence day the souls of our heroes and martyrs cries out from their graves “PROTECT YOUR MOTHERLAND, THE PHILIPPINES”. we have been in a countless battles against spain, u.s, japan and korea and we stood to the challenge. we also experience the only bloodless revolution in EDSA. so no way china can win against us. historically china has never win a war against a foreign country. but in korea an outnumbered filipinos was able to win battles against the chinese fought in a foreign land. whether it is for a bloody or bloodless war we can stood our ground. the chinese never have that experience.

    1. Agree, someone should be charged with treason for not implementing the modernization and allowing the Chinese do a survey on the pretext of a joint exploration. Now they are reclaiming land using data from that “survey” and worse we have been set up by delaying the modernization. Reclaiming seems to be faster than our modernization build up rate. That was a wise strategy unfortunately for us Pinoys.

      Before Pnoy leaves he should enact another law for the phase two of the modernization that should force its implementation.

  9. Someone should step up against the dark lord. Its korean garage sale time! Nevermind the hamiltons. Pnoy should buy now before its too late. Still i have doubts darkie would win since he is closely associated with the actor/senators and the old man. If only someone could compete with darkie as soon as now maybe there will be a chance. Happy birthday philippines to all as well.

      1. Come 2012, the military is our hope against the “Dark Lord”. I know that they can’t participate in political campaign/rallies. I just hope that they participate actively by taking to their friends and family.

      2. Within 2 years a phase 2 modernization law may be passed. Or, if its true someone may be severely afflicted with lupus. Can’t really tell.

      3. That rumor came out a couple of years ago and the person kept denying it, but who knows, it might really be true …

    1. Binay is close to the Aquinos and Mar ain’t a decisive person, look what happened while he was at Dotc and Yolanda before and after – NOTHING! Hope there will be a third candidate.

      1. y the way, what happened to the negotiation with the US for 2 P3s? Are we being held hostage again?

      2. It doesn’t look like they are pushing thru, and the LRPA acquisition will instead by done thru bidding …

  10. Binay won’t win…
    Nobody in the history of presidential elections that early poll opinion leader went on to win the presidency except for Magsaysay…
    He’ll go with that trend…
    Macapagal was not the favorite early on. Nor was Marcos even when he was reelected. Neither was Cory (remember that Comelec declared Marcos as winner).
    Ramos was not also the early favorite, It was Miriam.
    Erap was not one of the early favorites too but when INC bloc was clear to be on his side, it was moot and academic already during the campaign period.
    Gloria was not also the favorite, It was FPJ.
    And most recently, PNoy was not even among the presidentiables…
    However, if and granting the dark comes out the victor, he knows very well how to play his cards because whether he likes it or not, the US will not let him stray too far and the military will be CLOSELY watching…

    1. Personally, I would vote for Miriam, but her charisma only seems to extend to the middle class, not the masa. Plus she has health issues, and that people keep calling her insane. Hell, I would vote for Grace Poe instead if it means not having The Dark Lord as President …

    1. A strong alliance of Philippines-Vietnam-Japan is forming, with the US and Australia looking in. On the other hand, a Malaysia-Thailand-Singapore-China alliance is slowly becoming visible. The key is Indonesia, right now they are intent on being “neutral”, mainly because they don’t really like the US …

      1. Interesting mix. Singapore operates US hardware and so does thailand. Vietnam and indonesia and malaysia also use soviet wares. Sucks being vietnam because they are too far from rp and japan and beside china and thailand. I think indonesia will side with us since we settled a border issue with them. Singaporeans and malaysians are too full of themselves. I think they are particularly racist toward us(based on blogs their people post).

      2. since we’re in the topic of getting second hand assets i’ve read a lot of articles that say a lot of these world powers are in the process of replacing their hardware from the US to sokor to canada to japan to israel etc.Basically its open season for second hand hardware. Does the afp know about this? The US is retiring its a10’s, kiowas, hamiltons,oliver hazard perry frigates etc. Germany is retiring thousands of tanks and recycling them, canada is retiring its cf18’s, japan is retiring its older helicopter destroyers, sokor its pohangs and ulsans. The afp must know all of these before they get thrown away and in the case of australia’s f111’s they buried the airframes underground.

      3. In my opinion, second-hand aircraft are the most difficult to maintain due to the limited lifespans of their airframes. We would be better off targeting sea or land assets such as ships, tanks, etc. which is why we still have WW2 ships still serving in our navy. Our best bet would be the South Korean ships, due to our unique and close relationship with them. Sokor will finish retiring all of their Ulsan and Pohang-class ships by 2020, maybe a couple more years after that. I’d like to think that the PhN has a solid plan or proposal and are negotiating with Sokor for these, but there is a lot of uncertainty due to the change in President in 2016 …

      4. Rhk, why not up arm some of the old ships, they are mobile platforms that can shoot from afar. Wild but cost effective idea.

      5. Nah, the WW2 Frigate and Corvettes we have now are too old, they are too slow compared to modern vessels. The 3 Jacinto-class ships can be modified to have more capability, but not so much as those ships have top weight problems. The only ships we can really go to town up arming are the Del Pilars, and there are plans to do that, but it hasn’t materialized so far …

  11. I don’t think Singapore will side with China. Only despotic regimes tend to band together: Malaysia, China, and Thailand. The junta in Thailand will eventually release its grip once political stability is achieved. It’s citizens don’t take it seriously anyway. That leaves two chronically despotic regimes that will eventually band together in the long term for mutual assistance to suppress their increasingly disenchanted citizens: The religious bigots in Malaysia and the murdering commies of China.

    1. It looks like those boats were made by the New Zealand company “Naiad”. This looks like the boat they were given:
      http://www.naiad.co.nz/Boat+Range/Police++Patrol/10m+Naiad+Police.html

      And here are some of them in action in a presentation last month:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vWw8sXOz36Y

      I wonder, shouldn’t have these boats been given to the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) instead? Aren’t the PNP-SBU now overlapping the responsibility of the PCG? If so, why? Perhaps the government lost faith in the PCG? After all, there was a report by the Commission on Audit (CoA) lambasting the poor state of maintenance of PCG ships …

  12. I have read the report earlier this year that PCG have their own brand new speed boats. Just can’t find the link but I believe it was reported by GMA News.

    1. Oh yeah, the PCG are going to be receiving some brand new boats also. Still, I wonder how will they allocate the areas of responsibility between the PCG and the PNP-SBU.

      It looks like each PNP-SBU Naiad boat can carry up to 5 armed personnel. The one in the bow seems to be carrying the very modern Tavor TAR-21 rifle. These boats have very high speeds enabling them to intercept most boats, and the air-filled fenders are there to enable the boats to come alongside quickly to any boat for boarding without suffering any damage …
      http://l2.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/VFHBkwGE8C0w6X56utRIeg–/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7Zmk9ZmlsbDtoPTQxNztweW9mZj0wO3E9NzU7dz03Njg-/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/1529464546cc9d95f00bc434a14f46bfbdb46666.jpg

      1. i think its iwas pusoy tactic rp is employing. since they were caught by police and not by the coast guard they are justifying that it is a crime of poaching and not a territorial issue. then again its redundant since its the coast guard’s job. in any case they caught the poachers and it may work. the coast guard should have them as well tucked inside their hamiltons. hope we can catch a lot of chinese so we can show the world just how greedy they are now better yet send the greenpeace ship sea shepherd over hear so they can expose them to the media.

      2. With these very fast boats and the excellent training the PNP-SBU got, expect them to catch more Poachers from hereon …

      3. Pnp, the coast guard and the patrol boat section of bfar while maintaining their distinct functions should be reorganized under one department like a homeland defense as these are para military units. This way resources and coordination will be more efficient. Also, it will be out of the hands of incompetent Mar who has an “oversight” on dotc’s operations.

      4. can’t help but agree with Omar…

        Btw RHK and loyal folks in here, what are your insights of this one.

        http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/366030/news/nation/pnoy-to-meet-japan-pm-amid-territorial-dispute-with-china

        I think this in congruence of that JPN-PHL stronger alliance although I believe China is for sure closely watching because the result of this meeting may get them on their toes…

        Personally, a stronger Japan as big brother is better than an inutile and dormant superpower in the US.

    1. we should have a mutual defense treaty with japan asap. abs-cbn reported a while ago that china’s foreign affairs department released a statement that they are telling us to get off their supposed property asap. bullshit. kapal muks. any self respecting country would not do this to their neighbors friend or not. unless you live in africa where genocide is commonplace. mapag uusapan naman pero gago talaga itong si xi jinping ba ito? a treaty with japan can prevent this but it will also antagonize china further knowing them they will test that relationship. they will land troops on both senkaku and the spratlys and see if indeed that treaty will hold. again asean is still the key but if some of the member states still refuse to acknowledge that this conflict will not affect them then vietnam and japan will be our only friends (the US still is not a very reliable friend as of now). my biggest wish is that japan also unloads its soon to be decommissioned naval vessels to rp. they are a lot and ripe for the taking!!! japan is the second largest blue water navy in the world but its exact strength is still unaccounted for since their assets are mostly locally made and its sale prohibited for export. thanks to china they are changing their mind about exporting.

      1. They’ll probably want us to recognize the Senkaku Islands as Japanese territory and we’ll want them to recognize our claims against China.

        Also, defense treaty will be heavily tilted in our favor. They can probably project their fleet to help us in the Spratlys while we lack any force projection capabilities to protect the Senkakus.

        The best we can probably offer is political and economic support on our side (at least in the near future). Maybe we could also offer bases for their ships if they get in a shooting war with China?

        Then again, I doubt the Japanese public is prepared to sacrifice any of their soldiers for Philippine interests.

  13. Since we already have a defense pact with US and obligated to defend the US in the event of a war, it would be very advantageous to also forge a defense pack with Japan and South Korea bec. they also have a defense pact with the US which obligates the US to defend Japan, South Korea & of course the Philippines also involved. So if China attacks our mainland as a result of the escalation of the sea dispute at Spratly Islands, the US, Japan and South Korea will be obligated to defend us.

    1. If we enter into a defense pact with Japan & South Korea, maybe Japan will give-away their 70+ F-4 Phantom IIs (to be replaced by F-22 Raptors) to us and South Korea may sell their 60+ F-4 IIs & 170 F-5E/F Tigers at give-away prices + a bonus of another decommissioned corvette hehehe….

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