By John Lloyd Hoffman, Chaka Miles, Gloria Madonna Velarde and Gerry Albert Corpuz MANILA, Philippines- The left-leaning fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) and staunch ally Anakpawis party list on Wednesday urged Senate President Juan Ponce-Enrile and House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte to conduct a joint or separate congressional inquiry on frequent visit of nuclear arms -carrying US submarines in the country.
In a joint press statement, Pamalakaya vice chairperson Salvador France and Anakpawis party list vice chairman Fernando Hicap slammed President Benigno Simeon Aquino III, and the Senate and the House leadership for ignoring the "seemingly" regular visit of US submarine ships in the country, stressing the entry of nuclear carrier ships are strictly prohibited under the 1987 Constitution.
"President Aquino, Senate President Enrile and House Speaker Belmonte are ignoring this very fundamental issue of sovereignty and national independence by allowing these nuclear powered attack ships to come and go at any given time and make use of our ports as if this country is the largest American naval base outside Washington," they said in a joint statement.
Both leaders lamented that Philippine authorities did not even bother to check USS Lousiville when it docked at Subic Freeport, when it is supposed to inspect in accordance with the 1987 charter that bans the entry of nuclear carrying foreign ships in the country.
"Why there is no inspection made on US Louisville? Are the country's authorities aware that USS Lousville is an attack submarine capable of launching nuclear attacks and unleashing weapons of mass destruction? Please allow us to tell Mr. Aquino and company that first rate puppetry kills and the Filipino people will be the one to suffer courtesy of this across-the-nation betrayal of the present occupant in Malacanang," Hicap and France added. Pamalakaya and Anakpawis party list reminded Aquino, Enrile and Belmonte that the USS Louisville which will stay at Subic Freeport until June 30 is an advanced military transport capable of 14,000 miles submerged high-speed transit from the Pacific Ocean to the Red Sea. It can launch anti-ship missiles from a distance of 130 kilometers, Tomahawk land-attack cruise missiles with range of 3,100 kilometers, and other weapons of mass destruction.
"Are Aquino, Enrile and Belmonte aware that the USS Louisville was used to fire Tomahawk missiles in the 2003 US invasion of Iraq? Are they aware that US is now using Subic as launching pad to Washington's future attack on nations critical of or opposed to American imperialism?" they asked.
Pamalakaya and Anakpawis further warned President Aquino that the frequent visit of US nuclear carrying war ships in the country can be used as a solid basis for possible impeachment of Aquino in the near future. "The 1987 Constitution is clearly and repeatedly violated by the frequent visits of US nuclear ships and aircrafts. This is strong basis for the impeachment and possible removal of Mr. Aquino from Malacanang," the groups warned.
Pamalakaya agreed with the observations raised by the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) that the Aquino government is serving the US government's objective of using the country as platform to advance Washington's geo-poltiical objective of establishing its military and political domination in Asia Pacific Region.
In a statement posted in its website, the CPP asserted the Aquino regime likes to portray the buildup of US military strength in the Asia-Pacific as favorable to Philippine sovereignty claims over the Spratly Islands and other South China Sea features. "This is outright deception because, in fact, the biggest violator of Philippine sovereignty is the US government and military itself, with the connivance of its puppet Aquino regime", the CPP added.
"By allowing the US military to use the Philippines as a platform for its hegemonism in the Asia-Pacific region, the Aquino government has basically surrendered the Philippines' prerogative to determine who are its friends or enemies, and has kowtowed to the US government's geo-political alignments," added the CPP.