MANILA - President Benigno Aquino III called anew on the international community to support the country’s move to thwart China’s claims over West Philippine Sea (South China Sea), reminding them of Hitler’s acquisition of Sudetenland, a major precursor to World War II.
In an interview with New York Times, Aquino said: “If we say yes to something we believe is wrong now, what guarantee is there that the wrong will not be further exacerbated down the line?”
“At what point do you say, ‘Enough is enough’? Well, the world has to say it — remember that the Sudetenland was given in an attempt to appease Hitler to prevent World War II.”
Desperate to avoid war in the 1930s, the world powers agreed to give Germany the strategic Sudetenland so that Hitler will no longer demand more territories across Europe. Sudetenland was then part of Czechoslovakia, which Hitler wanted to dominate.
New York Times described Aquino’s remarks as “among the strongest indications yet of alarm among Asian heads of state about China’s military buildup and territorial ambitions, and the second time in recent weeks that an Asian leader has volunteered a comparison to the prelude to world wars.”
The Philippines has brought its territorial dispute with China to an arbitral panel, but China refuses to acknowledge the move.