This is the 21st century, so if World War 3 ever happens may just be fought through the Internet.
(After all, we’ve had the likes of Twitter egomaniac Donald Trump running office before.)
And now, Philippines’ Foreign Minister has also joined the Internet warfare.
Philippines’ Foreign Minister Tells China to “Get the F*** Out” of South China Sea on Twitter
According to Mothership, the Philippine foreign minister Teodoro Locsin Jr.Teodoro Locsin Jr. has ordered China’s vessels to vacate disputed areas in the South China Sea.
Apparently, the Chinese Coast Guard had made questionable manoeuvres in the area.
Chinese fishing vessels and maritime militia vessels were also deployed for prolonged amounts of time in Philippine maritime zones.
The notions led to a public protestation by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) of the Philippines, and subsequent outrage from Locsin.
But here’s the thing: Locsin wasn’t quite as diplomatic as expected of, you know, a foreign minister.
For instance, you may expect PM Lee to be really civil about it.
“Please remove your vessels from the area immediately,” PM Lee might say. Insistent, but undeniably diplomatic.
Alternatively, he may also say: “Here, have a drink from my magic cup instead of traversing disputed waters. It tastes better.” But we highly doubt that.
Locsin, on the other hand, had no such diplomatic wording. Rather, he comes across as a watered-down version of the iconic Twitter egomaniac Donald Trump.
Indeed, he did not hold anything back in his tirade against China, and was straightforward and clear-cut in his statement.
“China, my friend, how politely can I put it? Let me see… O…GET THE F*** OUT,” he wrote on Twitter.
Simply put, it was something you might’ve expected from a twelve-year-old (or Donald Trump). But probably not a full-grown Foreign Minister from the Philippines.
And lest you’re wondering, that particular expletive wasn’t the end of it. Far from it, actually.
In addition, he compared China to an “ugly oaf” and the Philippines to a “handsome guy”.
China, my friend, how politely can I put it? Let me see… O…GET THE FUCK OUT. What are you doing to our friendship? You. Not us. We’re trying. You. You’re like an ugly oaf forcing your attentions on a handsome guy who wants to be a friend; not to father a Chinese province … https://t.co/KTv1TOQvN7
— Teddy Locsin Jr. (@teddyboylocsin) May 3, 2021
And to add salt to the wound, he followed it up with several more wise words and a determinant question:
“What is it so hard to understand about Duterte’s UN declaration that the Arbitral award made all maritime features Philippines; no one else’s?”
From the looks of it, it appears that Locsin may be slightly tired of China’s antics.
Correction: he’s probably really tired.
He doesn’t have a uterus. If he tried to give birth to a Chinese province it would be a ball of crap at best and the end of the regime. What is it so hard to understand about Duterte’s UN declaration that the Arbitral Award made all maritime features Philippines; no one else’s?
— Teddy Locsin Jr. (@teddyboylocsin) May 3, 2021
Though whether that justifies his manner of speech is quite honestly a different question altogether.
We got to hand it to him though: he may not be diplomatic, but he is entertaining.
Philippines vs. China
So maybe Locsin’s tirade wasn’t exactly uncalled for. As mentioned above, the Philippines’ DFA had indeed protested against “shadowing, blocking, dangerous manoeuvre, and radio challenges by the Chinese Coast Guard (CCG)”.
It probably didn’t help that there was “incessant, illegal, prolonged, and increasing presence of Chinese fishing vessels and maritime militia vessels in Philippine maritime zones” either.
And though China tried to sweep away the accusations on 26 April 2021, claiming that China owns sovereignty over Bajo de Masinloc, the Philippines was indignant, stating that it was “without basis in international law”.
“China has no law enforcement rights in these areas. The presence of CCG vessels in the Philippines’ territorial waters of Pag-asa Islands and Bajo de Masinloc, an exclusive economic zone, raises serious concerns,” the DFA warned.
“The unauthorised and lingering presence of these vessels is a blatant infringement on Philippine sovereignty.”
They then asked China to “respect Philippine sovereignty”, and leave the affiliated areas.
But if previous iterations were to be referenced, it’s possible that the Philippines’ instructions have fallen on deaf ears… again.
After all, 200 Chinese vessels were previously spotted in the Whitsun Reef in March. Also, the Philippines has already filed 78 diplomatic protests to China since 2016.
Sure, the Philippines may be keen to enjoy a ‘friends with benefits’ relationship with China, but as the President Rodrigo Duterte stated: “There are things that are not really subject to a compromise.”
And so, well, one can’t really blame Locsin for his tweets, really.
It’s somewhat Asian to say that “nothing wakes you up like some rude, condescending words from time to time” anyway.
But Then Again…
It should be noted that this is hardly the first time that Locsin has used such… controversial and colourful language.
Back in 2019, the minister tweeted that the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) president Romulo Valles was a “moron in a white Mu-Mu”.
Even we laymen who’re unclear about the exact definition of a “Mu-Mu” would find it hard to ignore the clear disdain in Locsin’s statement.
Indeed, Locsin has been compared to Donald Trump, and was once outed by SCMP for a Twitter career “streaked with crudeness, arrogance, condescension, homophobia, profanity and violence”.
Let’s hope that the 72-year-old politician will be able to end his career in office on a good note, and not the same terms that his counterpart, a certain orange man, had to contend with.
Feature Image: Facebook (Teddy Boy Locsin) / Shutterstock.com (Marisa Estivill) (Image is for illustration purposes only)