By Erick San Juan
July 4th - the anniversary of the American independence and the Filipino-American friendship, a relationship that has been tested for many decades and now with the Aquino (part 2) Administration, where the US has shown so much so soon. The so called friendly gesture disregarded protocol while the whole electoral process was marred with irregularities and questionable results. But the show must go on, in order to prolong that friendly tie and make the bond stronger.
But for whom is the friendship anyway? Is that badly needed relationship benefit the Filipinos more than the Americans? A friendship is a two-way traffic that is sustained in a give-and-take atmosphere that should be beneficial to both parties. As an observer of events unfolding here and abroad, it seems that the US is gradually losing some of its vital allies especially in this region. I was at the East West Center's 50th anniversary and for the July 4th celebration in Honolulu and I can see that most of the attendees and guests are old hats,alumni and grantees. It was a warm gathering of experts but the young bloods seem not so keen in reviving the camaraderie and the bonding. The perception for that too friendly act towards the new president is to make sure that they will have a "permanent" station here when all hell break loose.
Actually there is nothing wrong if we have a powerful nation as a friend but through the years, the US has been perceived by many as shortchanging us. In the process, this so called alliance was and still is more beneficial to the US than to the Philippines. Presently, there are some crucial issues that our solons had to tackle and decide upon in relation with the US. The status of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) is still on the table through the Senate resolution authored by Sen. Miriam Santiago that has to be reviewed and decide upon by the 15th Congress. And, other very important economic issues that are very close to the grumbling stomachs of most Filipinos. We hope that the good ambassador, Harry Thomas can rectify this bad impression and lead us all to a relationship where both parties are equally treated as more than friends but more as brothers.
Together with all the peace-loving Filipinos, we pray that President Noy will not be the next “war president” in this very interesting times when humanity is faced with a threat that is unimaginable – a possible nuclear war. Hoping that what happened in the second World War will not be repeated when we entered a war not of our own liking.
Everyone has a role to play and the new administration should take the necessary precaution in dealing with other countries so that we will not always be at the losing end. Establishing good relationship with the community of nations is a need for any country to survive but such survival can be attained when that nation is ruled by a nationalist leader, who will always act for the good of all its citizenry.
May God bless all of us, most especially our leaders so that they may have the wisdom to unite this nation.