Although Duterte threatened to outsmart U.S. forces in 2016, he clearly benefits from U.S. military assistance in counterterrorism operations. Disputes over the cost of rebuilding bases have contributed to the U.S. significantly reducing its military footprint in the Philippines, Schaus said. The VFA was signed in 1998 to reduce the administrative burden required for U.S. forces to travel to the Philippines. As I said in these pages, the alliance between the United States and the Philippines, born in 1951 from the Mutual Defense Treaty, is based on a deep and extensive partnership between the two countries, and was no stranger to a cycle of stress tests, including in the field of defense – be it the renegotiation of basic agreements in the 1970s or the closure of U.S. military installations in the early 1990s. It is even worth recalling that the VFA itself is the result of a period of uncertainty for the Alliance in the 1990s: the agreement, ratified in May 1999 and which regulates the conditions under which US military personnel may temporarily be present in the Philippines, was reached after the Philippines perceived an increased threat from China in the early 1990s. , after the closure of the American bases. While we have heard a series of threats of duterte since taking office, the resignation of the Duterte administration toward the VFA is the greatest real threat to the U.S.-Philippine alliance since the president took office. Of course, even if the clock started during the 180-day period, there are still steps to be taken to finalize the step, and since the broader alliance itself would still exist, both sides have the potential to renegotiate the terms of a new VFA agreement further.
Nevertheless, it is worth contextualizing the potential importance of the move itself if it actually happens. The Agreement on Enhanced Defence Cooperation (EDCA), signed in April 2014 under then-President Benigno Aquino III, aims to operationalize the VFA. Military activities authorized by the Philippines are also insinuated in the context of the VFA. The executive agreement provides for an increased military turnover of U.S. troops, aircraft and ships in the Philippines and allows them greater access to military bases in the country. On June 1, the Philippine government informed the U.S. Embassy in Manila that it had frozen a February decision to withdraw the Philippine and U.S. Visiting Forces (VFA) agreement.
The agreement between the two countries facilitates the possibility for the United States to send military forces to the Philippines and supports the mutual defense treaty signed in 1951 by the U.S. and Philippine governments. The main effect of the agreement is to require the U.S. government to notify the Philippine authorities when it is aware of the arrest, arrest or detention of Filipino personnel visiting the United States and, at the request of the Philippine government, to invite the competent authorities to exercise jurisdiction on behalf of the Philippines, except in cases of particular interest to the State Department or the Secretary of Defense.  [VIII1] The waiver of U.S. jurisdiction is complicated because the United States is a federation of American states and therefore a federation of jurisdictions. On February 11, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte announced that Manila would denounce the U.S. and Philippine Visit mission agreement (VFA), an agreement that allows the U.S. military to move to the Philippines.
Duterte`s decision was taken in Washington with deep concern about the possible consequences of the Indopapacific Strategy (PDF), which was primarily aimed at countering China`s growing strength. Paradoxically, the fatal blow to the VFA could come from Washington itself rather than from Manila. Asked about Duterte`s denunciation of the agreement, Trump said, “I don`t mind them wanting to do it.