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As part of the pivot to Asia, the U.S. government has ramped up its counterterrorism cooperation with the Philippines, Indonesia and elsewhere. But the bigger question from the perspective of the Filipinos, beyond the disaster at hand, is this: Why is it that the United States still doesn’t have a domestic consensus that there is such a thing as climate change? When we talk about a global community, we at least ought to be able to start with that item at the top of the agenda.

For Filipinos and many poor people around the world, climate change, in effect, is terrorism conducted on them. And that is a far bigger threat to people’s livelihood and physical safety than all the things the U.S. is trying to sell them in order to have its troops’ forward positioned in the Philippines.

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