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10 July, 2017

US military’s anti-terror efforts in the Philippines fueling human rights violations

U.S. forces have teamed up with the Philippines’ military to combat terrorist groups in the country, ostensibly to bring about peace. But numerous human rights violations have sprung up in their wake and some believe that the U.S.’ ultimate goal may be to oust President Rodrigo Duterte.

by Joe Catron

Part 4 - U.S. neocolonialism unlikely to end anytime soon in the Philippines

Shahshahani added that U.S. involvement in the Philippines occurs across multiple levels, with various strategies but identical goals.

U.S. intervention takes place in the economic, political, social, and cultural spheres in the Philippines and perpetuates the country’s deep-seated social and economic crisis that is the root of chronic social unrest in the country,” she said.

The Filipino people have suffered the brunt of this military presence, including sexual violence against women and children, forced evacuation of communities in areas designated for military exercises and operations, injuries and killings of civilians, and destruction of the environment.

With U.S. forces showing no signs of leaving Marawi anytime soon, their presence raises several questions about the future. One is the effect that an enhanced U.S. role could have on peace talks between the GRP and leftist or Moro groups.

Another is the consequence of a possible power grab by the military of a democratic country in cooperation with a foreign superpower.

This current situation demonstrates how divided the ruling classes are within the current administration of Rodrigo Duterte,” Ellorin said, adding that it “indicates intentions of the U.S. and its loyalists in the AFP to destabilize the Duterte administration if it does not uphold the traditional status quo of U.S. neocolonial politics in the Philippines.

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