Geopolitics of the Philippine-U.S. 2014 Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA): Projecting American Airpower into the Dragon’s Lair


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When: Nov 30 2016 - 12:00pm until Nov 30 2016 - 1:30pm
Where: 1819 L St NW, Sixth Floor Conference Room, Washington DC, 20036

Geopolitics of the Philippine-U.S. 2014 Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA): Projecting American Airpower into the Dragon’s Lair

An Asia Pacific Foreign Policy and Defense Seminar featuring:

Dr. Renato Cruz De Castro
Visiting Fellow,
East-West Center in Washington

Dr. Marvin C. Ott (Discussant)
Professional Lecturer and Visiting Scholar,
Johns Hopkins SAIS

Geopolitics of the Philippine-U.S. 2014 Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA): Projecting American Airpower into the Dragon’s Lair from East-West Center on Vimeo.

East-West Center Visiting Fellow Dr. Renato Cruz De Castro explains this history of EDCA and its potential future under the Duterte administration.

The lecture examined the geostrategic implications of the 2014 Philippine-U.S. Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) in terms of U.S. utilization of the five agreed locations in the Philippines. The Philippines negotiated this pact because of its limited defense capabilities and China’s heavy-handed handling of the 2012 Scarborough Shoal stand-off. The two allies discussed the terms and conditions from September 2013 to March 2014 and signed the agreement in late April 2014. In January 2016, the Philippine Supreme Court ruled in favor of the EDCA, setting in motion the deployment of American forces in the Philippines. Currently, the U.S. Air Force (USAF) maintains a small contingent of aircraft and personnel in Philippine territory. This presence in five Philippine Air Force (PAF) bases marks the return of U.S. airpower which can be projected deep into China’s near sea defense zone. However, current developments in Philippine-U.S. relations cast doubt on whether the EDCA will be implemented or not. President Rodrigo Duterte’s anti-U.S. rhetoric and his alleged pivot to China seem to indicate that the EDCA will not see the light of day. Recent developments, however, point out that the EDCA might finally be implemented. This will have implications not only on Philippine national security interest, but also on the regional balance of power.

 For more images, please visit the album for this event on the East-West Center's Flickr page. 

Renato Cruz De Castro is a full professor (on sabbatical leave) in the International Studies Department, De La Salle University, Manila, and holds the Charles Lui Chi Keung Professorial Chair in China Studies. He is currently the U.S.-ASEAN Fulbright Initiative Researcher from the Philippines based at the East-West Center in Washington, D.C. He is an alumnus of the Daniel Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies in Hawaii, U.S.A. In 2009, Dr. De Castro became the U.S. State Department ASEAN Research Fellow from the Philippines and was based in the Political Science Department of Arizona State University. He earned his Ph.D. from the Government and International Studies Department of the University of South Carolina as a Fulbright Scholar in 2001, and obtained his B.A. and two master’s degrees from the University of the Philippines. Professor De Castro has conducted several courses on International Relations and Security Studies in the National Defense College and Foreign Service Institute. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Albert Del Rosario Institute for Strategic and International Studies (ADR Institute), and a consultant in the National Security Council of the Philippines during the Aquino administration. Professor De Castro’s research interests include Philippine-U.S. security relations, Philippine defense and foreign policies, U.S. defense and foreign policies in East Asia, and the international politics of East Asia. He has written over 80 articles on international relations and security that have been published in a number of scholarly journals and edited works in the Philippines, South Korea, Canada, Malaysia, France, Singapore, Taiwan, Germany, the United Kingdom, Australia, and the United States.

Marvin C. Ott is a professorial lecturer and visiting scholar in Southeast Asia Studies at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, lecturer in East Asian Studies at the Johns Hopkins University, and public policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. He was professor of national security policy at the National War College and faculty fellow at the Institute for National and Strategic Studies (National Defense University). He has held positions as associate professor at Mount Holyoke College, senior manager at the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment, adjunct professor at American University, senior East Asia analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency, consultant on Japan to the National Academy of Sciences, chairperson for Southeast Asia at the Foreign Service Institute (US Department of State), senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and more recently as deputy staff director of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. He served in Vietnam as deputy province representative in Darlac during the war. He has authored more than 100 chapters, articles, and monographs on primarily East Asian, intelligence, and technology assessment topics. He has been a regular commentator on Business Asia (CNN), and, most recently, a commentator on National Public Radio and Radio Free Asia. He writes a biweekly foreign policy column for The Ellsworth American (Maine) and regularly lectures at the Foreign Service Institute and the Marine Corps University. He received the Meritorious Civilian Service and Meritorious Joint Unit Service awards from the US Department of Defense. He attended Chung Chi College, Hong Kong, and received an MA and PhD from Johns Hopkins SAIS.

Primary Contact Info:
Name: Sarah Wang
Phone: 2023279755