The Philippines is an all – embracing community with hospitable people. This multicultural land is a friend to different people and is open to the world—oppressed, well-to-do, businessmen or not. If you are a businessman and is planning to expand over China, signing up for Chinese lessons will be an added advantage considering that there are Chinese people over there.
Sociologist Benedict Anderson suggests that the nationhood and nationalism in this post-colonial and other multicultural countries do not come from ethnicity. Instead, sufferings, experiences and common dreams bind them. There is a sizable and well-integrated Chinese community in the Philippines. These people are the ones getting immense pressure amid the tensions in the South China Sea- China and Philippines sea dispute.
In an event of war with China, a most distinguished Philippine writer questions the loyalty of the Filipino-Chinese community to the Philippines. The question has highly evoked negative reactions among these circles. The backbone of the nation’s economy is in the hands of the minority community who have known for their prominent positions in either the business, entertainment or political industries. Therefore, disruptive talk and internal divisions do not favor the Philippines.
China’s Threat in a Different Approach
First, it is unlikely that the Chinese will attack its neighboring countries. There is no assessment with regard to this and this is but an outcome of scandalous commentaries. Clearly, China is advancing its strategies by developing an anti-access/area-denial capability that will help in pushing the U.S out of East Asia.
Second, china does not operate in a European-style colonization. It seeks zone of deference from its neighboring countries. It is developing an economic authority and a military technology that will help win strategic battles. According to a prominent Chinese scholar, Yan Xuetong, the current plan of the country is to help its neighboring countries economically. By doing this, china gets in return a good political relationship: A “relationship purchase”.
The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) of china is prepared to win limited wars but not invading neighboring countries. It relies on some Soviet-era technology and seeks to fully modernize it. The military strategy is powered by the “active defense” doctrine. But more questions are arising on the ability of china to go beyond its immediate shores with such amount of power.
Philippines National Unity
Most Southeast Asian countries have experienced inter-ethnic strife in the 20th century, but the Philippines has never been afflicted by such. Compared to other Southeast Asian countries, the Chinese community has not suffered from systematic exclusion; they have been highly integrated as a minority community in the Philippines.
Filipino-Chinese businessmen run large conglomerates, ranking them among the wealthiest in the country. The tycoons may have an interest in expanding their businesses in china, so they seek to diffuse the territorial tensions and foster an impression of stability in Philippine-China relations.
The Filipinos share values like the celebration of multiculturalism, instinctive embrace of liberalism and opposition to dictatorship. Since their values are not defined by ethnicity, then this tells why the current Philippines president and his late mother (president too) share a Chinese descent.
This moment of challenges is perfect for national unity in the Philippines. The country should stand on its own by developing self-capabilities to discourage violence, hence helping in business productive and rise in economic growth.