from Time Magazine. This article discusses several situations with the Philippines, Thailand, and Japan
At a business forum in Beijing’s Great Hall of the People on Thursday, Duterte, who took office in June, announced his nation’s “separation” from the U.S. “Both in military, not maybe social, but economics also,” he said, “America has lost.”It was a stunning statement from the leader of one of the world’s most pro-American nations, which is bound to the U.S. by a seven-decade-old defense alliance. The setting was also momentous: in recent years, few bilateral relations have been as acrimonious as those between China and the Philippines, which were poisoned by competing territorial claims in the South China Sea.
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Now, Duterte has agreed to talks on the South China Sea with China, which showered the visiting Philippine President with promises of $13.5 billion in trade deals. “I’ve realigned myself,” Duterte told his hosts on Thursday, “in your ideological flow.” Even though Beijing has built artificial islands that double as floating military bases in contested South China Sea waters, Duterte noted on Wednesday that China “has never invaded a piece of my country all these generations.” He went on: “During the Cold War, China was portrayed as the bad guy [but] … what we have read in our books in school were all propaganda produced by the West.”
And that wasn’t all. “Americans are loud, sometimes rowdy. Their larynx is not adjusted to civility,” he added. “They are a very discourteous people.”
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Even though Thailand is still bound by a U.S. defense alliance, the Thai government has also agreed to buy Chinese submarines. Thailand’s enhanced military relations with China occurred just as Washington suspended military aid to Bangkok because of American concerns over the junta’s power grab.
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Nevertheless, Chinese foreign policy analysts see the weight of history in Beijing’s favor. For centuries, Asian nations paid tribute to Chinese emperors, who controlled the world’s richest civilization. The U.S., by contrast, is a recent interloper.