GUEST: Brian Becker, Executive Director for the ANSWER Coalition based in Washington, D.C..
Earlier this month, the Philippines sent a letter to the United States which officially ended the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA).
That security pact allowed the presence of U.S. troops in the country for joint exercises and training. U.S. forces have also been involved with humanitarian assistance, and helping to fight terrorism.
The decision by Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte was announced after the U.S. cancelled a visa for one of his political allies. Asked if scrapping the VFA was a knee-jerk reaction, Duterte stated the Philippines should not need the help of other countries to survive.
While many believe ending the agreement will help the Philippines disentangle from the U.S. – especially in its own domestic affairs – there is also concern how this exit will affect the regional balance of power moving forward.
With us to discuss the Philippines decision to cancel the VFA is Brian Becker. He’s the Executive Director for the ANSWER Coalition based in Washington, D.C..