The Philippines is haunted by its relationship with the United States. I remember the day, in 1991, when the Military Bases Agreement between the two countries was rescinded. The headlines yelled, finally: Freedom! But worrywarts held on to their beads. Clark Air Force Base and Subic Naval Base were America’s largest overseas outposts — powerful vestiges of colonial rule decades after the American occupation, which lasted from 1899 to 1946, had ended. In American history books those decades have fallen into an Orwellian memory hole: lost or abridged.
On the Philippine side, however, the relationship with America looms like Donald Barthelme’s balloon, a deep metaphysical discomfort arising from an inexplicable physical presence.… Seguir leyendo »