10.14.2010

Civilization of Blood...a Borrowed Post

America teaches a class in civilization. From left to
right in the front row: the Philippines, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Cuba.
In the Philippine-American War(1899-1902) America crushed Philippine independence, leaving between 200,000 and a million dead. Theodore Roosevelt called it “a war to extend Anglo-American progress and decency”. America ruled the Philippines till the 1940s.

In 1898 America went to war with Spain. It mainly wanted Cuba. But Spain also ruled the Philippines. There America destroyed the Spanish fleet in Manila Bay. President McKinley said it was to protect Oregon and California.

America backed the Philippine Revolution, which overthrew Spanish rule in the countryside. America took Manila.

McKinley said he did not want the Philippines. But then one night in the White House, when he was down on his knees praying to God, it came to him:
  1. That we could not give them back to Spain – that would be cowardly and dishonorable;
  2. that we could not turn them over to France and Germany – our commercial rivals in the Orient – that would be bad business and discreditable;
  3. that we could not leave them to themselves – they were unfit for self-government – and they would soon have anarchy and misrule over there worse than Spain’s was; and
  4. that there was nothing left for us to do but to take them all, and to educate the Filipinos, and uplift and civilize and Christianize them, and by God’s grace do the very best we could by them, as our fellow-men for whom Christ also died.
In 1899 America made war on the Philippines to prevent the anarchy and misrule of self-government. To uplift and civilize and Christianize the Christians of the Philippines:
  • In Samar, American soldiers were ordered to make it a “howling wilderness” and kill “everything over ten”.
  • In Batangas province a third of the people, 100,000, died.
  • In Caloocan all 17,000 people were killed, wounded or driven off, men, women and children, their houses set on fire. A common practice of the Americans.
  • Thousands of ordinary Filipinos died in American “protection zones” (prison camps).
  • One reporter saw Filipinos put up their hands up to surrender only to be taken to a bridge and shot down one by one, their bodies falling into the river.
Secretary of War Elihu Root:
The war in the Philippines has been conducted by the American army with scrupulous regard for the rules of civilized warfare, with self-restraint, and with humanity never surpassed.
Black Americans, wanting to fight for their country, got there only to hear White American soldiers call the Filipinos “niggers” day after day. Many white officers called the war “nigger killing business”.  One white soldier said:
Our fighting blood was up, and we wanted to kill niggers. This shooting human beings beats rabbit hunting all to pieces.
Some black soldiers, like David Fagan of the 24th Infantry, deserted and fought for the Filipinos.

The Filipinos were outgunned, but they could keep going through guerrilla warfare so long as they had good generals. The last of these, Miguel Malvar, surrendered in 1902. Some fighting continued till 1913 but the war was over.

~ The Philippine-American War, from Abagond

7 comments:

  1. That we could not give them back to Spain – that would be cowardly and dishonorable

    Who's "we"?

    Black Americans, wanting to fight for their country

    *raises eyebrow* Whaaaaat?

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  2. Madame Maria Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo did questionable things when she was in office, but there is one thing I will never forget. When terrorists/freedom fighters kidnapped one of her citizens and held him for ransom a few years ago during the height of the "war on terror," she paid up in the face of scathing American opposition. In essence, she chose the life of one truck driver over a "cosy" relationship with the United States. From what I remember, the US dropped the Philippines as a "valued" friend like a hot potato. No matter. They're still there and doing extremely well. Their ABS-CBN news is kick-ass because the Philippines has the freest press on the planet.

    I'm not surprised by the racial slurs or the brutal murders. It's shitty par for the colonization course. *disgusted*

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  3. Not surprised either. Said as much on Abagond.

    Only the whitefolks seem surprised by the history kick on his blog.

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  4. the great american empire never ceases to disgust me. O_o now THIS is the stuff that's kept out of the history lessons at american schools. hmm...

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  5. yet another part of American history that is never discussed because it would interfer with our narrative of "bringing democracy" to non-whites

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  6. Props to the Filipinos who fought long and hard against immeasurable odds.

    Moment of silence, authors.

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  7. Forgive me if this is off topic,but i was looking at the article you had about Danny Chan. I don't have a FB page which was why I wrote this on this on your link.

    My condolences goes out to Danny's family. it's sad and ironic, how he lost his young life.He didn't lose it to enemy fire in Iraq or Afghanistan,but he lost in to what was supposed to be his so called fellow soldiers serving in the same military as he did.

    I've never been interested in joining the military though I thought about it at one time. I'm glad that I didn't because as I've always thought about the military it's a semi waste of time. With your won countrymen not respecting you for who you are, I wouldn't want to die for racists.

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