All Your Base are Belong to Us

Kumarian published a book in 2008, Reluctant Bedfellows, that documented the legacy of prostitution around Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines. Though the base closed in 1991, the local town of Angeles City now attracts a host of sex tourists from around the world. Turns out the military left more than a prostitution industry. Stars and Stripes reports that while Clark and Subic Naval Base (also shuttered in ’91) were in operation, they regularly dumped raw sewage into local fishing waters and fuel and chemicals into the groundwater supply. Three landfills at Subic contain toxic metals and other materials which the indigenous population used to sort through for pennies. Unsurprisingly, local residents have come down with a host of illnesses. Both the US and the Philippines continue to ignore the problem. When the two governments shook hands in 1991, money and legal responsibility were tossed like hot potatos.

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