Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty Review: U.S. Commitment?

Topping the list in any review of the 70-year-old Mutual Defense Treaty between Manila and Washington is the need for a precise definition of what the United States’ commitment is to the republic in a crisis, the Philippines’ secretary of defense said today.

Delfin Lorenzana, in an online Center for Strategic and International Studies forum, said this lack of precise definition and the ups and downs of the relationship between the two nations since the Philippines’ independence in 1946 were among the reasons a rising China in the 21st century claimed Mischief Reef and Scarborough Shoal as its own territory in 2012.

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