Shan Orpiada

De La Salle University International Studies Professor Renato De Castro said in an interview with ANC on September 25 that a trilateral cooperation is expected to cause discomfort to China.

Photo Courtesy of Stratbase ADR Institute/Philippine Coast Guard

It was after the Philippines, Japan, and the United States decided to form a collaborative front during the UN General Assembly (UNGA) High-Level Week in New York to ensure the cooperation and rules-based order in the Indo-Pacific region.

However, Prof. De Castro stressed that the trio-security cooperation is supposed to create distress in another country, specifically China.

"Well, of course in every security cooperation it’s supposed to create tension, it will cause discomfort to some countries. But you form this primarily because of the fact you want to deter and cause discomfort to that country," he said.

Prof. De Castro also said that China applied the grey-zone operation with the Philippines by putting a 300-meter buoy at the entrance of Bajo de Masinloc and the actions on the resupply mission at the Ayungin Shoal.

"China puts us in a catch-22 situation. China applies grey-zone operation and we just see it recently with China putting the 300m bouy at the entrance of Bajo de Masinloc," he stated. "Of course the Chinese actions directed against our resupply mission at Ayungin Shoal – those are grey-zone operations.”

According to an Australian uniform-controlled media, The Cove, grey zone tactics, confrontation, and conflict pertain to employing non-military methods that remain beneath the threshold of armed warfare to accomplish political goals.

Moreover, Prof. De Castro mentioned that the Philippines has a strategic ally that is willing to help the country despite China’s aggressive actions. 

"China expects us to sit down and accept everything China throws at us. But you have a willing strategic ally — the United States — and a security partner that is more than willing to assist us. So why not form the security partnership?" De Castro remarked.

De Castro emphasized that President Bongbong Marcos Jr. needs to make a political decision, as inaction is the worst option, especially in light of the buoy installed by China. 

Edited by Khezyll Galvan


Shan Orpiada is currently a Grade 11 Student of Our Lady of Fatima University Antipolo. He worked as an editorial and news writer and became the Editor-in-chief of The Leader, the Official English School Publication of Antipolo National High School and became one of the leaders for the Supreme Student Government during his years in high school.