“I’m about to cross the Rubicon between me and the United States. At least for the next six years. I would need your help.”
This is what President Rodrigo Duterte shared with the media in relation to what he told the Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev during a meeting earlier this month.
Aside from this possible huge turn in the country’s relationship with the United States, Duterte also said that there is a possibility for more alliances with China and Russia as his talk with the two countries continue to progress.
The president clarified that this conclusion between the Philippines and the United States during his presidency will only reflect in the country’s economic alliances and not in military alliances. He shared that he is not breaking ties with the US but is opening up the country for trade and commerce with China and Russia instead.
This discussion with the Prime Minister of Russia happened during the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit in Laos in early September where he had the chance to meet with the Russian PM.
Furthermore, Duterte explained that one of the push factors that helped him arrived to such a decision was the lack of assurance that the United States would come the Philippines’ aid once a war breaks out. He pointed out that even though there was an RP-US pact that was signed in the ‘50s, there is a clear statement in the United States Constitution that says the Congress must first grant the permission to go to war before the President can declare a war in defense of an ally.
“That’s the problem. So if Congress will not give him that authority, what will happen to us?” Duterte said.
Duterte added that he knows the US did not like him and he even compared himself to deposed leaders like Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi, Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, and Syria’s Bashar al-Assad.
Meanwhile, Duterte said that he is considering to visit Russia since there has been discussions of an official visit to China and Japan as well.