Philippines president Duterte moves to scrap military pact with U.S.
The Philippine government on Tuesday said it was scrapping a 20-year-old security pact with the United States that allows American troops to take part in military exercises and humanitarian operations in the country, endangering a key foothold for the Pentagon in the region as China adopts an increasingly aggressive tone.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has long questioned the value of the relationship between the armed forces of both countries. The 1998 Visiting Forces Agreement, known as the VFA, will expire in 180 days unless both countries agree that it should continue.
Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper, in Europe this week for a NATO defense ministerial summit, called the decision “unfortunate” but said the Pentagon was still seeking details. “I do think it would be a move in the wrong direction,” he said.
Poisoned cigar? Faulty GPS? Seafood gone bad? False flag car bomb? The possibilities are endless! It couldn't happen to a nicer guy...;-)