Chinese tabloid: PH ‘cute little submissive’ of US
BEIJING—The Philippines is nothing more than the “cute little submissive” of the United States, a Chinese tabloid with close ties to the ruling Communist Party said on Tuesday, criticizing Manila for military exercises with Washington.
The English-language editorial came a day after the Philippines launched war games with the United States and Australia, partly aimed as a warning shot to Beijing amid competing claims in the West Philippine Sea also known as South China Sea, home to vital shipping routes.
“Of all the countries involved in territorial disputes in the South China Sea, the Philippines is the one with the most tricks up its sleeves, but none of its tricks work,” the Global Times said.
“Can anyone believe that China can be bluffed to make compromises when others show off their military muscle?” added the paper, affiliated with the Communist Party mouthpiece the People’s Daily.
“We will simply find it laughable while imagining Philippine personnel stumbling after US forces.”
Beijing claims sovereignty over most of the resource-rich and strategically important South China Sea, including areas close to other Asian nations, using vague demarcation lines that first appeared on Chinese maps in the 1940s.
China has expanded its presence in disputed parts of the sea in recent years by embarking on giant reclamation work on reefs and islets, turning some into islands capable of hosting military aircraft landing strips.
The Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan have overlapping claims.
In efforts to deter China, the militarily weak Philippines has encouraged the United States, its longtime ally, to increase its presence in the country and its coastal waters through expanded and more frequent defense exercises, the paper said.
But the Global Times editorial dismissed their effectiveness, saying: “After being the ‘cute little submissive’ of the US all these years, Manila has gained only a handful of secondhand weapons and an empty sense of security, let alone any real enhancement of its Army’s combat capability.”
The insulting tone came after a commentary on China’s official news agency Xinhua earlier this year likened the Philippines to a “crying baby” for seeking international support against Beijing’s island-building, denouncing its efforts as “pathetic.”
The United States, which has repeatedly voiced concerns about Chinese actions in the South China Sea, again denounced Beijing’s behavior.
“I think that China is responsible for the rise of tensions and provocations in the South China Sea,” said Adm. Harry Harris, commander of the US Pacific Fleet, during a conference in the Indonesian capital Jakarta.
In an interview with Agence France-Presse last week, President Aquino said the world should fear China’s actions in the disputed sea, warning they could lead to military conflict.
Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr., chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, released what he said were satellite photos of intense recent Chinese construction over seven reefs and shoals in the Spratly archipelago, reinforcing images from a US-based company earlier this month.
China rejects criticism of its reclamation and construction works and asserts it has no need to justify activity on its sovereign territory.
Originally posted: 2:05 PM | Tuesday, April 21st, 2015