February 01, 2013
The Filipino people resolutely protest the docking of another US military submarine at Subic Bay, “adding further insult to the injury of the recent intrusion of a US naval ship at the Tubbataha reef marine reserve.”
The entry and docking today of the USS Cheyenne at Subic Bay is a “another affront against Philippine sovereignty by the US imperialist government and its military,” said the CPP. “It is a brash show of contempt for the Filipino people’s national dignity, aspiration for national freedom and demand to end US military domination and violations of Philippine territorial integrity.”
The docking today of the USS Cheyenne comes just around two weeks since the USS Guardian naval minesweeper ran aground at the Tubbataha reef marine reserve, damaging around 2,000 square meters of coral and raising howls of protests against the US military. Just around a month ago, another US nuclear submarine, the USS Bremerton, docked at Subic.
With US plans to further increase the rotational presence of its naval forces in the Philippines and in the Asia-Pacific region, the number of dockings of US warships and submarines at Subic, Manila and other Philippine ports is bound to rise this year to more than 80, or an average of seven to eight foreign military vessels a month.
“Every American warship that docks in the Philippines reduces the country to a military outpost of the US in the Asia-Pacific region and likewise reveals the farcical claims of Philippine sovereignty by the puppet Philippine government,” said the CPP. “The rising number of US naval vessels that dock and patrol in Philippine seas increases as well the possibility of more environmental damage such as the destruction of the Tubbataha corals and the reported dumping of human and toxic waste off the coast of Subic last year.”
The docking of the USS Cheyenne at Subic Bay also raises the matter of nuclear safety and violations of the constitutional ban on the entry and stockpiling of nuclear weapons. The USS Cheyenne is described by the US Pacific Command as a Los Angeles-class nuclear attack submarine capable of launching Tomahawk missiles which are long-range rockets that can be armed with nuclear warheads.
“The Aquino regime should be assailed for its puppetry to the US imperialist government and its military in defending the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA),” said the CPP. In an interview after the US incursion at Tubbataha, Aquino claimed that the VFA has nothing to do with the presence of the USS Guardian in the wildlife reserve as there was no military exercise there.
“This is a complete lie meant to preempt the demands for the abrogation of the VFA,” said the CPP. The CPP pointed out that the entry, docking and ship patrols by the US naval forces in the Philippines are all being carried out under the terms of the VFA.
“In the first place, the USS Guardian was allowed to enter Philippine sovereign waters and dock at Subic under the VFA. Furthermore, with the VFA, the US soldiers behind the illegal incursion and environmental damage at Tubbataha are now beyond the authority of the Philippine government as they have been flown back by the US military to their base in Sasebo, Japan.”