Aquino: New Navy ship boosts PH defense in sea row

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The BRP Ramon Alcaraz is the second Hamilton-class cutter that was acquired by the Philippine Navy under the Foreign Military Sales Program of the United States. US EMBASSY PHOTO RELEASE

SUBIC BAY, Philippines – President Benigno Aquino III on Tuesday said the acquisition of a second warship by the Philippines will boost the Navy’s ability to patrol and defend the country’s waters.

Aquino expressed confidence that the BRP Alcaraz, the “newest and modern ship” the country has acquired, will fulfill the government’s aim to have an Armed Forces capable of defending the country and the Filipino people.

“Now that the BRP Alcaraz is here, it will definitely boost our patrols around the Philippine Exclusive Economic Zone and our ability to quell threats and dangerous elements, respond to search and rescue operations, and needs of our marine resources,” Aquino said in Filipino as he welcomed the arrival of the 45-year-old former US Coast Guard Hamilton-class cutter at the Alava Wharf here.

Aquino recounted the ship’s “historic and symbolic” journey from the United States, passing through Pearl Harbor and Guam, and the heroes behind this journey.

It is in this light that the President challenged the troops of the Philippine Navy to live up to the courage exemplified by those who lived before them.

“So this is my challenge to the Philippine Navy and to the troops that will be on this ship: Live up to the courage and determination of the Filipinos who did not hesitate to offer their sweat and blood for their fellowmen. Just think of Commodore Ramon Alcaraz in World War II: Nine Zero fighters of the Japanese against his Q-boat that is made of wood, and yet he was able to shoot three of the nine and successfully got back his boat. That means, they may be ill-equipped, the odds may be to their disadvantage and yet they did not back down on the enemy,” Aquino said.

Some of the high-ranking officials who attended were Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto del Rosario, outgoing US Ambassador Harry Thomas, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and Armed Forces Chief of Staff General Emmanuel Bautista.

The country’s new warship, a secondhand Hamilton-class frigate, was named after Alcaraz.

Alcaraz was a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class of 1940, and was said to be one of the pioneers of the Philippine Navy.

One of his most famous exploits was when he took down three of the nine Japanese Zeros on January 17, 1942.

“Commodore Alcaraz was able to do the impossible because he was aware that nobody can defend our nation but ourselves,” Aquino added.

“We cannot deny that BRP Gregorio del Pilar- our first Hamilton-class cutter– has been a great help for the Philippine Navy to do its job. Because of this, they were able to endure longer and faster in patrolling our waters. And because BRP Alcaraz is here, we will be able to intensify patrolling our Philippine exclusive economic zone and its  ability to defend from enemies, conduct search and rescue operations, and take care of our maritime environment,” he said.

Before Del Pilar and Alcaraz, the Pilippines had only one gun frigate, the BRP Rajah Humabon which is about 70 years old.

The cost of refurbishments and training, repair and engine replacement of Alcaraz cost about P600 million.

Alcaraz, with 88 crew on board, left the United States after 14 months of training on June 10 and arrived in the Philippines on August 2. She will be re-painted before she gets commissioned by the Philippine Navy around October.

Aquino added that these positive results inspired the government to pursue modernization in the armed forces.

“We are erasing the image that we are ill-equipped and a poor armed forces,” Aquino said.

The Philippine Navy used to be one of the best in the region during the 1960s, but slowly deteriorated to one of the weakest forces in Asia.

The President also thanked the United States, for its continuing aid throughout the country’s long history.

The BRP Alcaraz is the Philippines’ second warship, following BRP Gregorio del Pilar’s acquisition in 2011. Both are Hamilton-class cutters decommissioned from the US Coast Guard.

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  • phipher filipino

    THERE WILL BE TIME FOR THE PHILIPPINE NAVY TO HAVE THE REAL ARMAMENT… THAT WILL START WITH TWO FREMM (MAESTRALE LIKE FRIGATE) AND MORE SO THAT CHINA WILL THINK TWICE IF THEY WILL PURSUE THEIR ACTION OR NOT… SIMILAR WITH WHAT IS HAPPENING NOW IN SENKAKU ISLAND OF JAPAN…

  • Fulpol

    it’s big deal for the hobbits..

  • dorkstar

    Sorry this is what we can afford. How about asking your UK government to give us a bigger and better boat? :)

  • Guest

    At least we dont have a bloodthirsty & cold blooded enemy like yours – radicalized Brit Muslims who can blow themselves up in any UK city or slit the throats of people anytime.

  • Siako Estrangero

    then use those yachts to stay on the sea for 30 days without extra provision from other boats 100 miles away from the shore…

  • MadeInPH

    shut up and eat your fish and chips

  • Bonggebongge

    HI pretty lad…To you nothing but for us its a big thing…shut your mouth if you dont know nothing ’bout Pilipinas…lol ur azz..

  • Crazy_horse101010

    i doubt you kinow where southhampton is

  • phipher filipino

    Hey there how much did you receive now Mr. 50 Cents?

  • Siako Estrangero

    are you being racist here pal?

  • TheMightyOne

    Dude masaya ba talaga maging papansin??? hahaha

  • Magsasaka

    pukang na hilig talaga manghingi hehehe

  • Siako Estrangero

    why don’t you bite the metal to find out? Oh i’m sorry i never thought you’re that dumbass when it comes spelling. biatch!

  • Siako Estrangero

    Philippinos daw oh… engot amfutsa.

  • Crazy_horse101010

    guess again america still using them. you probably didnt know that living in china

  • phipher filipino

    Filipinos are not that poor… some politicians are just wise enough to rely on other countries defenses rather than create our own… it’s all about money… politicians and other government employees can get enough kickbacks (bribes) if the materiel will be made here in our country. It’s business as usual!

  • divictes

    Liaoning, China’s aircraft carrier was launched in 1988 as the Russian Varyag. It had been rusting since then in a Ukrainian port. It NEVER sailed until China bought the rusting hulk and towed it to Chinese port. If you are so rich why buy also scrap metal? Ours crossed the Pacific under its own power, yours had to be towed. Which one is scrap metal now?

  • branlem

    ungas na mga beho ito..gamit pa ng ibang pangalan at mukha…kawawa naman nahiram nilang picture na ito…

  • Magsasaka

    are you being !diot here hehehe

  • Magsasaka

    anak ng wala ka talagang kahihiyan pinapahiya mo sarili mo mga pinagsasabi mo hehehe, inumin mo muna gamot mo sa utak nyahahaha

  • Siako Estrangero

    you’re trying to ask or what?

  • Siako Estrangero

    shhh… tulog na lunatic… tulog na.

  • Magsasaka

    she was amazed by your out of this world response nyahahaha

  • dorkstar

    You understand the word sarcasm right? Do i need to place a “sarcasm alert” everytime I place a comment? Tsk tsk

  • Crazy_horse101010

    i think it is a fake picture and person another 50 center

  • Crazy_horse101010

    china hasnt been issuing any advisors

  • dorkstar

    Because we do not like people like you. People who lacks attention and the need to troll forums to feel good about themselves…

  • raptor_d_lonewolf

    becoz your govt is afraid. thats why.

  • ofwsagitnangsilangan

    Really? China issuing travel advisories? I doubt it!

  • phipher filipino

    KANTOTAN NA LANG TAYO!

  • ofwsagitnangsilangan

    yeah, another freakin’ commie…

  • Descarte5E

    Easy. I just google it. Same picture, same name. The real Laura Trott is double Olympic gold medalist. World class athlete are expected of highest conduct and surely this one is not acting like one. Calling moderator.

  • Crazy_horse101010

    i notice purple daisy is missing. hum

  • Crazy_horse101010

    i suspected that just trying to bait everyone in with the fake picture

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