Most Filipinos believe US will defend Philippines from invasion


Manila, Philippines – Six in 10 Filipinos believe the US will defend the Philippines in case of an invasion by another country, according to a recent survey by the Social Weather Stations (SWS) released yesterday.

The survey, conducted from June 27 to 30, found 61 percent of adult Filipinos who expressed belief that the US will defend the Philippines. Of the 61 percent, 31 percent “strongly believe” while 30 percent “somewhat believe.”

Nine percent of them did not believe, of which six percent “somewhat” did not believe and three percent “strongly” did not believe.

Thirty percent of the respondents were undecided.

The SWS asked the respondents the question: “How much do you believe or not believe that the United States will defend the Philippines in case we are invaded by another country?”

The proportion of those who believe that the US will defend the Philippines in case of invasion by another country was highest in balance Luzon at 70 percent, followed by Metro Manila at 64 percent, the Visayas at 54 percent and Mindanao at 48 percent.

It was higher in overall urban areas at 66 percent, compared to overall rural areas at 56 percent.

It hardly varied by class, ranging from 60 percent to 65 percent, the SWS said.

It was slightly higher among elementary graduates and above, ranging from 61 percent to 69 percent compared to non-elementary graduates at 53 percent.

The June 2018 survey also found 47 percent who were aware of the Philippines-US Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) even before the survey while 53 percent learned about it only during the interview.

Belief in the US defense commitment is stronger among those previously aware of the MDT, the pollster said.

Among those aware of the MDT even before the survey, 80 percent believed that the US will defend the Philippines in case of an invasion. Of the 80 percent, 48 percent strongly believe, 32 percent somewhat believe.

Among those who became aware of the defense agreement on account of the survey, 45 percent believed – 17 percent strongly believed and 28 percent somewhat believed – in the US defense commitment.

Awareness of the treaty was highest in Metro Manila, urban areas, among the upper classes and among the more educated groups.

The proportion of those previously aware of the defense pact was highest in Metro Manila at 58 percent, followed by balance Luzon at 53 percent, the Visayas at 41 percent and Mindanao at 31 percent.

It was 55 percent in overall urban areas and 38 percent in overall rural areas.

By class, it was highest in class ABC at 51 percent, followed by class D at 49 percent and class E at 34 percent.

It was highest among college graduates at 67 percent, followed by high school graduates at 51 percent, elementary graduates at 42 percent and non-elementary graduates at 27 percent.

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