Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte stunned commentators around the world last year when he announced a “separation from the U.S.” while on a visit to Beijing.

Since then, the firebrand leader has continued to confuse and confound many with overtures of friendship with China, while also continuing nationalist rhetoric around defending Philippines’ territory in the South China Sea from China.

As U.S. The Jamestown Foundation’s Peter Wood says, “The Philippines are an interesting test case for the effectiveness of Chinese attempts to export values and win allies through economic incentives — even those with whom it has competing territorial claims.”

Read more:
Philippines Choose Chinese Investment Over Territorial Defense
World Responds to Xi-Duterte Meeting
Creating Facts on the Sea: China's Plan to Establish a New City in the South China Sea

Editor: Olivia Yang