History of the United States eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 731 pages of information about History of the United States.

AMERICAN POLICIES IN THE PHILIPPINES AND THE ORIENT

=The Filipino Revolt against American Rule.=—­In the sphere of domestic politics, as well as in the field of foreign relations, the outcome of the Spanish war exercised a marked influence.  It introduced at once problems of colonial administration and difficulties in adjusting trade relations with the outlying dominions.  These were furthermore complicated in the very beginning by the outbreak of an insurrection against American sovereignty in the Philippines.  The leader of the revolt, Aguinaldo, had been invited to join the American forces in overthrowing Spanish dominion, and he had assumed, apparently without warrant, that independence would be the result of the joint operations.  When the news reached him that the American flag had been substituted for the Spanish flag, his resentment was keen.  In February, 1899, there occurred a slight collision between his men and some American soldiers.  The conflict thus begun was followed by serious fighting which finally dwindled into a vexatious guerrilla warfare lasting three years and costing heavily in men and money.  Atrocities were committed by the native insurrectionists and, sad to relate, they were repaid in kind; it was argued in defense of the army that the ordinary rules of warfare were without terror to men accustomed to fighting like savages.  In vain did McKinley assure the Filipinos that the institutions and laws established in the islands would be designed “not for our satisfaction or for the expression of our theoretical views, but for the happiness, peace, and prosperity of the people of the Philippine Islands.”  Nothing short of military pressure could bring the warring revolutionists to terms.

=Attacks on Republican “Imperialism."=—­The Filipino insurrection, following so quickly upon the ratification of the treaty with Spain, moved the American opponents of McKinley’s colonial policies to redouble their denunciation of what they were pleased to call “imperialism.”  Senator Hoar was more than usually caustic in his indictment of the new course.  The revolt against American rule did but convince him of the folly hidden in the first fateful measures.  Everywhere he saw a conspiracy of silence and injustice.  “I have failed to discover in the speeches, public or private, of the advocates of this war,” he contended in the Senate, “or in the press which supports it and them, a single expression anywhere of a desire to do justice to the people of the Philippine Islands, or of a desire to make known to the people of the United States the truth of the case....  The catchwords, the cries, the pithy and pregnant phrases of which their speech is full, all mean dominion.  They mean perpetual dominion....  There is not one of these gentlemen who will rise in his place and affirm that if he were a Filipino he would not do exactly as the Filipinos are doing; that he would not despise

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History of the United States from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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