The Filipino American War
Often called the Philippine Insurrection (in the US), or the War for Philippine Independence (in the Philippines), this was a conflict over the government and ownership of the Philippines. The United States had just fought and won a war with Spain, and, as a prize, was awarded "ownership" of the Philippines, which had previously been a Spanish possession. However, many of the native Philippine people felt that they should have an independent country, and not be ruled by a foreign power (they didn't much care for the changing of their master, just that it was still an overlord). Thus, when the US brought in significant military force to occupy their newest prize, the local population began a revolution, attempting to oust the Americans.
On February 4, 1899, an American soldier, Private William Grayson, shot a Filipino soldier at the bridge of San Juan, Manila. The fatal shot was followed by an immediate U.S. offensive on the Filipino lines. This marked the beginning of the Philippine-American War, which lasted for three years until the establishment of the civilian colonial government of Governor-General William Howard Taft on July 4, 1902. The timing of the San Juan incident is suspect since it happened only two days before the U.S. Congress was scheduled to ratify the Treaty of Paris on February 6, 1899. Under the treaty, Spain officially ceded the Philippines, Guam, and Puerto Rico to the United States in exchange for $20 million. Since the U.S. Congress, like the American public, was evenly split between the anti-imperialists and pro-annexationists, the treaty was expected to experience rough sailing when submitted to the Chamber for ratification. The San Juan incident and the outbreak of the Philippine American War tilted sentiment in favor of acquiring the Philippines, and thus the treaty was ratified by the U.S. Congress.
Causes of the Philippine-American War
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