The Philippines: Past and Present (vol. 1 of 2)
Dean C. Worcester

Part 5 out of 10

Immediately after the abandonment of Cotabato by the Spaniards the
Filipino residents set up a government there. A few days later the Moro
datos, Piang, Ali and Djimbangan, dropped in with their followers,
cut off the head of the Filipino _presidente_, served a few other
leading officials and citizens in the same manner, and proceeded to
set up a government of their own which was the only government that
the place had prior to the arrival of the American troops.

Dato Djimbangan promptly caused the Filipina women of the place to
be stripped and compelled to march before him on the public plaza in
a state of nudity.

At Zamboanga the Moros could have taken the town at any time after
the Spaniards left had they desired to do so. On the arrival of the
Americans Dato Mandi offered to take it and turn it over to them,
but his proposition was declined.

He subsequently swore to an affidavit relative to conditions under
Insurgent rule. It reads as follows:--

"We always had peace in Zamboanga District; except during the
revolution of the Filipinos in the year 1899, when for seven or eight
months there was in existence the so-called Filipino Republic. During
that time there was much robbing and killing; the life of a man was
worth no more than that of a chicken; men killed one another for
personal gain; enemies fought one another with the bolo instead of
settling their differences before the law. It was a time of bloodshed
and terror. There was no justice. Because of this the Moros were
opposed to the Filipinos. There was conflict between the better class
of Filipinos and the revolutionists, who had gained control of the
local government." [336]

Elsewhere throughout the Moro territory those Filipinos who did
not promptly make their escape were murdered or enslaved. In short,
the lion and the lamb lay down together, with the lamb inside as usual.

Thus it will be seen that this first and last attempt of Filipinos
to govern Moros did not result in complete success.

Baldomero Aguinaldo made a subsequent attempt to open communication
with the Sultan of Jolo, authorizing him to establish in all the
_rancherias_ of Mindanao and Jolo a government in accordance with a
decree duly transmitted. The Sultan was requested to report the result
of his efforts and to give the number of his forces with their arms,
and was advised that, "if in this war, which I consider to be the last,
we secure our independence and with the opposition of our brothers
in that region, with yourself at their head, we are successful in
preventing the enemy from gaining a foothold, the grateful country will
always render a tribute of homage and gratitude to your memory." [337]
Curiously, the Sultan seems to have remained unmoved by the appeal.


This tight little island of 1236 square miles had in 1903 a Visayan
population of 29,451. Its people are all Filipinos, and are on the
whole rather an unusually orderly and worthy set. There is no reason
why it should have been excluded in considering "the human problem
in its broader governmental aspect," whatever that may be, nor can I
understand why Blount should have desired to exclude it except that
he seems to have been endeavouring to exclude everything possible
outside of Luzon, in order to increase the apparent importance of
the Christian provinces of that island. Masbate should of course be
taken into account in connection with the Visayan Islands, of which
it is one.

The islands ordinarily included in the group known as "The Visayas"
from the ancient tribal name of the civilized Filipino people who
inhabit them, who are called Visayans, are Samar, Panay, Negros,
Leyte, Cebu, Bohol, Masbate, Tablas, Romblon, Ticao, Burias, Siquijor
and numerous smaller islands adjacent to those named. Although their
inhabitants are all rated as one people, they speak a number of more or
less distinct dialects. Only Panay, Negros, Samar, Tablas and Sibuyan
have non-Christian inhabitants, and in the three islands last named
their number is so small as to be negligible. In the mountains of Panay
and Negros, however, Negritos are to be found in considerable numbers,
as are the representatives of a tribe sometimes called _Monteses_ [338]
and sometimes Bukidnon. The latter tribal designation I have thought
it best to reserve for certain inhabitants of northern Mindanao.

In the Visayas, Palawan and Mindanao the government of Aguinaldo
was established at various places and different times, without
consulting or considering the will of the people. The men who went as
his delegates were supported by armed forces, hence their authority
was not at first questioned, but soon there arose murmurings which
might easily have grown into a war cry.

The attitude of the Visayan Filipinos is clearly foreshadowed in the
following extract from a letter dated January 14, 1899, in which Mabini
discussed the advisability of putting the constitution in force:--

"And even if this change is made, I fear that Negros and Iloilo will
form a federal Republic and not one in conformity with the centralized
Republic provided for by the Constitution." [339]

The action later taken by Negros shows that there was abundant reason
for this fear.

As late as February 26, 1899, the Insurgent government was still
ignorant as to the real conditions in Negros and Mindanao. [340]

From a letter written on March 18, 1899, to Apacible at Hongkong, we
learn that Aguinaldo and his followers were even then still uninformed
as to events in the Visayan Islands. [341] In view of these facts,
how ridiculous become the contentions of those who claim that the
Malolos government represented the archipelago as a whole. And what
shall we say of the following statement, remembering that the Treaty
of Paris was signed December 10, 1899?

"When the Treaty of Paris was signed, General Otis was in possession
of Cavite and Manila, with less than twenty thousand men under his
command, and Aguinaldo was in possession of practically all of the
rest of the archipelago with between 35,000 and 40,000 men under his
command, armed with guns, and the whole Filipino population were in
sympathy with the army of their country." [342]

Ultimately, by one means or another, and chiefly by the use of armed
emissaries, the Visayan Islands, with the exception of Negros, were
brought into the Insurgent fold.

Mabini's fear that Negros and Iloilo would form a federal republic
was not realized, but Negros set up its own government, applied to the
local commander of the United States forces for help, endeavoured with
almost complete success to keep out Tagalog invaders, and presently
settled down contentedly under American rule, facts of which Blount
makes no mention. On the contrary, without just cause, he includes
this great island, with its 4881 square miles of territory and its
560,776 inhabitants, in the area over which he claims that Aguinaldo
exercised complete control.

At Iloilo the American troops encountered opposition when they planned
to land. Negotiations had been entered into with the local Filipino
officers, but the latter, under the influence of representatives
whom Aguinaldo had sent from Luzon, announced themselves as adherents
of his government, and when the American troops finally disembarked
fired the town ahead of them. It has been claimed that in doing this
they were inspired by pure patriotism, but the facts shown by their
own records present a very different picture.

In writing to Aguinaldo on April 8, 1899, Mabini says:

"We have received a communication forwarded from Iloilo, from General
Martin Delgado and Francisco Soriano, your commissioner. Soriano states
that the troops of Diocno have done nothing except commit excesses
and steal money during the attack by the Americans upon the town of
Iloilo, even going so far as to break their guns by using them as
poles to carry the stolen money which they took to Capiz. It is said
that these forces, besides being unwilling to fight the Americans,
refuse to give their guns to those who do wish to fight and do not want
Capiz to aid the people of Iloilo, who are the ones who support the
entire forces, including the troops of Diocno who went there." [343]

This same letter contains the following brief reference to conditions
in Cebu and Leyte:--

"Also a native priest, Senor Pascual Reyes, has arrived here from
Cebu, and says that in Leyte General Lucban is committing many abuses
and that Colonel Mojica is only a mere figurehead. In Cebu, he says,
things are also in a chaotic condition, because the military chief,
Magsilum [Maxilom,--TR.], and the people are not in harmony."

Further details as to conditions in Cebu are given in a letter to
Aguinaldo from the commissioner whom he put in charge of elections
in that island, who on February 19, 1899, writes: [344]--

"Having arrived in this province the 8th of last month, I left on the
11th for the northern pueblos of this Island to hold the elections
for the offices ordered by the Superior Decree of June 18, last.

* * * * *

"The news spread like an electric spark, as in all the pueblos I
visited later I found that almost all of the residents were in their
homes, so that when the elections were held in the town hall, all the
principal residents attended, requesting me to inform you that they
were disposed to sacrifice even their dearest affections whenever
necessary for our sacred cause; they only asked me to inform those
who hold the reins of government at the present time in this province,
that some steps be taken to put a stop to the arbitrary acts which had
been and still are being committed by the so-called Captains, Majors,
Colonels, Generals and Captains General, who abusing in the most
barefaced manner the positions they claimed to hold, were depriving
them of their horses and their carabaos, or cattle. I promised them
that I would do this, as I do now, by sending a communication at once
to Sres. Flores and Maxilom, who are at the head of the provincial
government, impressing upon them the fact that if they continue to
grant ranks and titles to persons of this character, as they have done,
it would end in the utter ruin of this wealthy province."

He adds that these men did not remedy the evils complained of. It
would be possible to cover in detail all of this and the remaining
Insurgent territory, and to show that Judge Blount was quite right in
stating that conditions similar to those encountered in Luzon arose
there, but the limitations of time and space forbid, and I must ask
my readers to accept on faith the statements of Blount and myself
that such was the case!

Taylor thus summarizes the conditions which ultimately arose:--

"The Insurgent soldiers lived in their own land as they would have
lived in a conquered country. They were quartered on the towns and
the towns had to feed them whether they would or not.

"Peace there was where Aguinaldo's soldiers had not penetrated,
but there does not seem to have been progress. Life went very well
in a long siesta in the shady villages under the palm trees, but not
only the structure of the State, its very foundations were falling
apart. When Aguinaldo's soldiers came they brought cruelty and license
with them. Proud of their victories and confident in themselves they
felt that the labourers in the fields, the merchants in the towns,
were for the purpose of administering to their necessities and
their desires. Aguinaldo, having seen this force gather about him,
was forced to entreat it, to appeal to it; he was never strong enough
to enforce discipline, even if he cared to do it."

Aguinaldo himself finally became disheartened over his inability to
maintain a decent state of public order in the territory which he
claimed to govern, and in December, 1898, tendered his resignation,
giving among other reasons odious favouritism on the part of some of
the military chiefs, together with a desire to enrich themselves by
improper means, such as accepting bribes, making prisoners a source
of gain, and decreasing the allowance of the soldiers. He said that
many soldiers had received sums of money as their share of booty,
and intimated that officers must have done the same. He made charges
against civil as well as military officers and ended by saying that
he retained the evidence for presentation when called on. [345]

Aguinaldo was later persuaded to withdraw his resignation. No wonder
that he wished to tender it!

In referring to the report of Wilcox and Sargent, Blount has said:--

"This report was submitted by them to Admiral Dewey under date of
November 23, 1898, and by him forwarded to the Navy Department for
its information, with the comment that it 'in my opinion contains the
most complete and reliable information obtainable in regard to the
present state of the northern part of Luzon Island.' The Admiral's
indorsement was not sent to the Senate along with the report." [346]

He thus gives it to be understood that the admiral believed that the
report truthfully set forth the conditions which actually existed in
these provinces, and that his indorsement was suppressed. Not only was
it true that this report when rendered contained the most complete
and reliable information then available in regard to the existing
state of the northern part of Luzon Island, but it contained the only
first-hand information available. The facts ultimately leaked out and
led the admiral radically to change his opinion as to the conditions
which arose under Insurgent rule. Of them he later said:--

"There was a sort of a reign of terror; there was no government. These
people had got power for the first time in their lives and they were
riding roughshod over the community. The acts of cruelty which were
brought to my notice were hardly credible. I sent word to Aguinaldo
that he must treat his prisoners kindly, and he said he would."

I believe that I have fully demonstrated the truth of these
statements. Blount was thoroughly familiar with Dewey's testimony
before the Senate Committee, in which they occur, but he did not
mention them.

I cannot close this discussion of Insurgent rule without quoting
extracts from a remarkable document written by Isabelo Artacho
in October, [347] 1899. It was entitled "Declaration Letter and
Proclamation" and was addressed to the Filipino people. While it is
probable that Artacho was impelled to tell the truth by his hatred for
Aguinaldo, tell the truth he did, and his rank and standing entitle
his statements to consideration:--

"Study the work of the insurrection; see if it is, as is said, the
faithful interpretation of your wishes and desires.

"Go through your towns, fields, and mountains. Wherever you see an
insurgent gun or bolo you will find girls and faithful wives violated,
parents and brothers crying for the murder of a son or of a brother;
honest families robbed and in misery; villages burned and plundered
for the benefit of a chief or a General; you will see fresh and living
signs yet of those horrible crimes perpetrated with the greatest
cynicism by those who call themselves your liberators! Liberators
because they wear red pants, or a red shirt, or carry on their hats
a piece of red cloth or a triangular figure!

"Here, a president stabs a man, perhaps the most honest of the village,
simply for having implored mercy for a creature arbitrarily inflicted
with the _cepo_ [an oblong square piece of heavy wood divided into two
parts, with a lock at each end and six or more holes in the middle
to confine the feet of prisoners]; there, a dying man, suspended
by the feet in a _cepo_, raised from the level of the ground, by
another president who has charged him with an unproved crime; there
a poor woman falsely charged and driven by petty officers with their
bayonets for having objected to their invasion into her house, or shop,
they being supposed to be, each, Justice itself, '_Justicia_,' and to
be obeyed as images of the Gods; there, generals who murder without
fear, for an insignificant motive, creatures whose members are being
mutilated, or their flesh cut in slices and afterwards roasted and
given them to eat; there, officers braining a girl who has refused
to accede to their sensual wishes, the lifeless body of the victim,
pierced with shots, after having been made use of, is thrown into the
river. It is not unusual to witness officers burying people alive
in a tomb prepared by the victim, by order of the murderer; it is
not unusual to see a _Puisne_-Judge pointing a revolver at a man who
is about to give evidence, and threatening to brain him for having
dared to ask: 'Why and to whom am I to declare?' And finally, on his
tottering throne, you will see the Magistrate of the Philippines, so
called by his worshippers, with his mephistophelian smile, disposing
and directing the execution of a murder, of a plunder, of a robbery, or
the execution of some other crimes against those who are indifferent or
do not care to worship him, such indifference being considered a crime.

"Putting aside the many other murders, I may mention that one recently
committed on the person of the renowned and by many called the worthy
General, Antonio Luna, which took place just at the entrance of the
palace of the Republic Presidency, and also the assassination at Kavite
of the ever remembered martyr, Andres Bonifacio, the founder of the
'Katipunan' Society, and the one who initiated the Revolution of 1896;
against the memory of whom it has been committed, in the proclamation
of that falsely called Republic, the criminal and unjust omission to
render the smallest manifestation of Filipinos' feelings towards him,
to prevent that same might dislike his murderers!

"Study the ordinances and constitution of this so-called democratic
Government of the Republic, that grand work of the wise Filipinos;
admire with me that beautiful monument erected on a sheet of paper
and consecrated to the conquest of reason and labour, especially in
connection with human rights and property, the basis for the well-being
of social life; but, lament and deplore with me its palpable nullity
when brought to practice and you will again see that the laws were
made for the people and not the people for the laws!

"Under this republic called democratic it is a crime to think, to wish,
to say, anything which does not agree with what the said Gods think,
wish and say. Nobody and nothing is attended to, whilst those who
have your lives in their hands must be respected.

"Under this Goverment there cannot be the slightest notice taken of
family, property, morality and iustice, but confusion and disorder
appear everywhere like a dreadful shadow, produced by the ignorance of
the subordinate officers, and of the powers that be in the villages
and provinces, who are supported by a special committee, or special
commissioners empowered to impoverish and to ruin all and with the
right of disposing, at their own accord, life, family and individual
property without responsibility whatsoever on their part.

* * * * *

"Let the peaceful annexation of the whole of the Southern Islands of
Jolo, Mindanao, Iloilo, Negros, Cebu and others where now the American
flag is hoisted and under whose shadow tranquillity and well-being
are experienced, speak for itself.

"Let it speak for itself, the proceeding observed by the whole people
of Imus, who were asking protection when the American troops took
possession of the town of Bacoor, whilst the insurgent troops there
located were hostile.

"Let them speak for themselves, the protests against the war made by
the numerous persons of S. Francisco de Malabon, Sta. Cruz de Malabon,
Perez Dasmarinias and other towns, before the Worthy Chief Mariano
Trias, who ultimately refused, with dignity, the high position of
Secretary of War, for which rank he was promoted for reasons which
are not worth publishing here. In fine, let it speak for itself, the
non-resistance shown by the people of Old Kavite [Kawit], Noveleta,
and Rozario of the heroic province of Kavite, notwithstanding the
many intrenchments and troops there located, as well as the identical
behaviour observed by other towns of Luzon provinces who are ready
to follow when the American troops are in them.

* * * * * * *

"In fact no one would believe it, and the Philippine people are
tired of waiting for the day when Haring Gavino will shake a napkin
to produce suddenly horses vomiting fire and lightning and troops of
dangerous insects; that day in which they will witness the realization
of that famous telegraphed dream to the effect that two hours after
the commencement of the war the insurgents will take their breakfast
in the Palace of 'Malacanang,' their tiffin in the Senate House, and
their dinner on board the _Olympia_ or in Kavite; that day in which
the celebrated _Pequenines_ army, with their invisible Chief-leader,
will exterminate the American troops by means of handfuls of dust
and sand thrown at them, which process, it is said, has caused the
smallpox to the Americans; that day in which the _Colorum_ army will
capture the American fleet with the cords their troops are provided
with, in combination with a grand intrenchment of Tayabas made of
husks of paddy, by a Nazarene, who will then, by merely touching,
convert each husk into a Bee with a deadly sting; that day in which
the insurgents, like their leaders, provided with hosts of flour,
or of paper, pieces of candles of the holy-week matins, holy water,
pieces of consecrated stones; of vestments belonging to a miraculous
Saint or with some other Anting-Anting or talisman or _amuletos_,
will make themselves invulnerable to bullets; also have power to
convert into any of the four elements, like those personages of the
Philippine legends and comedies,--Ygmidio, Tenoso, Florante, Barnardo,
Carpio, etc.

"Yes, the people of the Philippines are quite tired of waiting for
the predicted European conflict, which it is said would give them
their independence; if not, perhaps, divide the Islands as they are
now amongst cousins, brothers, nephews, uncles and godfathers.

"In the near future, when we have acquired the necessary political and
social education and the habit of behaving justly towards ourselves
and towards our fellow-brothers; when free from all superstition,
healthy, strong and vigorous, we find ourselves capable of governing
ourselves, without there being the possibility of the preponderance
of our passions in the consideration, direction, and administration
of the interests of our country, then, and only then, we will be
free! we will be independent! [348]

"_Hongkong_, 1st October, 1899."

Most of the men who perpetrated the outrages I have detailed are alive
to-day, and are powers in their respective communities. Simeon Villa
was recently elected a member of the municipal board from the south
district of Manila, but fortunately an American governor-general
prevented him from taking his seat. Just prior to my departure from
Manila he was appointed, by Speaker Osmena, a member of a committee
on reception for Governor-General Harrison.

The kind of independent "government" these men established is the
kind that they would again establish if they had the chance, [349]
but among the persons to be tortured and murdered would now be those
Americans who failed to escape seasonably. I do not mean to say
that such a state of affairs would come about immediately, but it
would certainly arise within a comparatively short time. Sooner yet
"the united Filipino people" would split up on old tribal lines,
and fly at each other's throats.


Did We Destroy a Republic?

The claim has frequently been made that the United States government
destroyed a republic in the Philippine Islands, [350] but some of
the critics seem to entertain peculiar ideas as to what a republic
is. Blount states [351] that Aguinaldo declined to hear our declaration
of independence read "because we would not recognize his right to
assert the same truths," and then apparently forgetting the Insurgent
chief's alleged adherence to the principles of this dacument, he
lets the cat out of the bag by saying that "the war satisfied us all
that Aguinaldo would have been a small edition of Porfirio Diaz,"
and would himself have been "The Republic." [352]

He would doubtless have set up just this sort of a government, if
not assassinated too soon, but it would hardly have accorded with the
principles of the declaration of independence, nor would it have been
exactly "a government of the people, by the people, for the people."

Blount truly says [353] that the educated Filipinos, admittedly
very few in number, absolutely control the masses. He adds [354]
that _presidentes_ of pueblos are as absolute bosses as is Murphy
in Tammany Hall, and that the towns taken collectively constitute
the provinces. The first statement is true, and the second, which
is tantamount to a declaration that the _presidentes_ control every
square foot of the provinces and every man in them, is not so far
from the truth as it might be. I have been old-fashioned enough to
retain the idea that a republic is "a state in which the sovereign
power resides in the whole body of the people, and is exercised by
representatives elected by them."

Blount labored under no delusion as to the fitness of the common
people to govern. [355]

Not only did the Filipinos themselves understand perfectly well that
they had no republic, but there were many of them who were fully
aware of the fact that they could establish none. Fernando Acevedo,
in writing to General Pio del Pilar on August 8, 1898, said: [356]--

"There could be no republic here, even though the Americans should
consent, because, according to the treaties, the Filipinos are not in
condition for a republic. Besides this, all Europe will oppose it,
and if it should be that they divide our country as though it were
a round cake, what would become of us and what would belong to us?"

I will now trace the evolution of the government which Aguinaldo did
set up. In doing so I follow Taylor's argument very closely, drawing
on his unpublished Ms., not only for ideas, but in some instances for
the words in which they are clothed. I change his words in many cases,
and do not mean to unload on him any responsibility for my statements,
but do wish to acknowledge my indebtedness to him and at the same
time to avoid the necessity for the continual use of quotation marks.

Aguinaldo's methods in establishing his republic are shown by his order
[357] that "any person who fights for his country has absolute power
to kill any one not friendly to our cause" and the further order
[358] prescribing that twelve lashes should be given to a soldier
who lost even a single cartridge, while if he continued to waste
ammunition he should be severely punished. In March, 1899, workmen
who had abandoned their work in the arsenal at Malolos were arrested,
returned, given twenty-five lashes each and then ordered to work. [359]

The news that an American expedition was about to sail for the
Philippines made him realize that he had not much more than a month
in which to place himself in a position in which he would have to be
consulted and assisted, and this he tried to do. The arms he received
from Hongkong on May 23 enabled him to begin an insurrection, not
as an ally of the United States, but on his own account. From May 21
to May 24 he issued orders for the uprising against Spain. On May 24
he declared himself Dictator of the Philippines in a proclamation in
which he promised to resign his power into the hands of a president
and cabinet, to be appointed when a constitutional assembly was
convened, which would be as soon as the islands had passed into
his control. He further announced that the North American nation
had given its disinterested protection in order that the liberty of
the Philippines should be gained. [360] On May 25, 1898, the first
American troops sailed from San Francisco for the Philippines.

Aguinaldo still had a month in which to seize enough Spanish territory
to erect thereon what would appear to the Americans on their arrival to
be a government of Luzon, of which he was the head. The Hongkong junta
and Aguinaldo himself intended to ask for the recognition of their
government, but they had first to create it. To obtain recognition
it was necessary that the American commander on land should be able
to report that wherever he or his troops had gone the country was
ruled by Aguinaldo according to laws which showed that the people
were capable of governing themselves.

As the United States is a republic it was natural that the directing
group of insurgent leaders should decide upon a republican form of
government. That form would appeal to the people of the United States;
the first "Christian Asiatic Republic" was a description which would
inevitably awaken sympathy in that mother of republics. The idea was a
wise and subtle one; but Aguinaldo's republic was merely an elaborate
stage-setting, arranged for the contemplation of the people of the
United States.

By June 5, 1898, the success of the insurgent arms had been such that
Aguinaldo felt that he could throw down the mask. He would still
be glad of American assistance, but he felt himself strong enough
to do without it. He saw that "there can now be proclaimed before
the Filipino people and the civilized nations its only aspiration,
namely, the independence of this country, which proclamation should
not be delayed for any ulterior object of this government" [361] and
ordered that the independence of the Philippines should be proclaimed
at his birthplace, Cavite Viejo, on June 12, 1898. On that date he
formally proclaimed it. The provinces of Cavite, Bataan, Pampanga,
Batangas, Bulacan, Laguna and Morong were about to fall into his hands,
the Spanish troops in them being besieged, and about to surrender.

From the same place on June 18, 1898, Aguinaldo promulgated his decree
for the creation and administration of municipalities. [362] In brief,
this provided that as soon as the territory of the archipelago, or any
portion thereof, had passed from the possession of Spanish forces, the
people in the towns who were most conspicuous for their intelligence,
social position and upright conduct were to meet and elect a town
government. The heads of the towns in every province were to elect
a head for the province and his three counsellors. The provincial
council, composed of these four officials, with the presidente of the
capital of the province, were to see to the execution in that province
of the decrees of the central government and to advise and suggest.

This provincial council was to elect representatives for the
revolutionary congress, which was to be charged with submitting
suggestions to the central government upon interior and exterior
affairs, and was to be heard by the government upon serious matters
which admitted of delay and discussion.

Before any person elected to office was permitted to discharge
his functions, his election was to be approved by the central
government. The military commanders, except in time of war, were
to have no jurisdiction over the civil authorities. They could,
however, demand such supplies as they might need, and these could
not be refused. The government was to appoint commissioners to carry
these regulations into effect.

On June 20 Aguinaldo issued his regulations for the government of
provinces and municipalities [363] as supplemental to the decree
of two days before. It went into the details of government, under
the following heads: police, justice, taxation and registration
of property.

On June 23 he proclaimed the establishment of a revolutionary
government, with himself as "president." In this capacity he had all
the powers of the Spanish governor-general, unhampered by any orders
from Spain. It is true that the scheme provided for the eventual
formation of a republic, but it is doubtful if the people who drew it
up really knew what that word meant. What was provided for in practice
was a strong and highly centralized military dictatorship, in which,
under the form of election, provision was made for the filling of
all offices by men devoted to the group which had seized control.

According to this decree the dictatorial government was in future to
be entitled the revolutionary government. Its duty was to struggle
for the independence of the Philippines in order to estabish a
true republic. The dictator was to be known as the president of the
revolutionary government. There were to be four secretaries--one of
foreign affairs, commerce and marine; one of war and public works;
one of police and interior order, justice, education and hygiene;
one of the treasury, agriculture and manufactures. The government
could increase the number of secretaries if necessary. They were to
assist the president in the despatch of business coming under their

In addition to the president and his secretaries, there was to be a
revolutionary congress composed of representatives from the provinces
of the Philippine Archipelago, elected as provided by the decree of
June 18. In case a province was not able to elect representatives,
the government would appoint them for such province. The congress
was to discuss and advise, to approve treaties and loans, and to
examine and approve the accounts of the secretary of the treasury. If
important matters admitted of delay, the congress would be heard
concerning them; but if they did not admit of delay, the president of
the government was to act at once. Projects of law could be presented
by any representative, and by the secretaries of the government.

A permanent committee of congress presided over by the vice-president
was to be chosen by that body. This was to serve as a court of appeal
in criminal cases and as a court of final jurisdiction in cases
arising between the secretaries of the government and provincial
officials. The acts of congress were not to go into effect until the
president of the government ordered their execution. He was also to
have the right of veto.

This was a well-devised plan to secure control for the central
group about Aguinaldo. His commissioners, under a form of election
in which the electors were carefully selected men, established
municipal governments devoted to the cause of the revolution. These
were to choose provincial officials and members of the congress. All
elections were subject to Aguinaldo's approval, and every province
was under the command of a military representative of his, who could
and did call upon the civil authorities for such supplies as he deemed
fit. All real power was vested in the central group, and the central
group was composed of Emilio Aguinaldo and his public and private
advisers. By this time he had gathered about him men who were trained
in the law, some of whom had served the Spanish government in various
capacities. They were accustomed to the methods that had previously
prevailed under the Spanish regime, and were now ready to draw up
constitutions and regulations for the new government. Mabini wrote
the three organic decrees. Copies of them were sent to the foreign
consuls in Manila, and on July 15, 1898 to Admiral Dewey.

Although the title of "president" was assumed by Aguinaldo, as
more likely to be favourably considered in the United States than
"dictator," the tendency of his followers who had not been educated
in Europe was to speak of and to regard him not as a president,
but as an overlord holding all power in his hands. The people did
not feel themselves citizens of a republic, copartners in an estate;
they considered themselves subject to a ruler who sometimes called
himself president, and sometimes dictator. Indeed, there is much to
show that if Aguinaldo and his followers had succeeded in their plans,
even the name "republic" would not have been long continued as the
title of his government. [364]

Aguinaldo's claim as to the effectiveness of his government on August
6, 1898, was as follows: [365] "The government of the revolution
actually rules in the provinces of Cavite, Batangas, Mindoro,
Tayabas, Laguna, Morong, Bulacan, Bataan, Pampanga, Infanta and
besieges the capital, Manila. The most perfect order and tranquillity
reign in these provinces, governed by authorities elected by the
inhabitants in conformity with the organic decrees dated June 18 and
23 last. Moreover, the revolution has about nine thousand prisoners of
war who are treated humanely and according to the rules of civilized
warfare. We can muster more than thirty thousand men organized as a
regular army."

It may have been that in the majority of these provinces municipal
governments, formed in accordance with the provisions of the decree of
June 18, had been established; but provincial governments had not been
established in all of them, and tranquillity did not reign in any of
them, as they were the scene of operations against the Spaniards. There
could not well have been nine thousand prisoners in his hands at this
time, as that was claimed later when a large additional number of
Spaniards had surrendered. As for the thirty thousand men organized as
a regular army, there may be a certain difference of opinion as to what
constitutes a regular army; the men who saw Aguinaldo's force then,
and who have read the papers of its leaders, must be of the opinion
that that force was not a regular army. Probably only Manila Province
had a provincial government on August 6. Its local presidentes met at
Cavite Viejo on August 3 and elected three members of congress from
the province, and also the members of the provincial government. The
election took place under the supervision of Colonel Teodoro Gonzales,
whom Aguinaldo had appointed governor of Manila Province on August
1. He remained governor after the election was held. Not until August
17 did the local presidentes of Bulacan assemble under the presidency
of the secretary of the interior and proceed to elect two members to
congress and the members of the provincial government. Not until August
20 was there an election for the members of the provincial government
of Cavite Province. This was held in the town of Cavite. Isaac Fernando
Rios, who was afterwards a member of the Filipino junta in Madrid,
was chosen a representative of the province; but as he wrote that he
was in favour of coming to some agreement with Spain which would permit
the development of the Philippines, without abandoning the sovereignty
of that country, Aguinaldo promptly disapproved his election [366]
and ordered a new one held for the office thus left vacant. On October
2, 1899, Aguinaldo approved the result of a new election held there
because four of the five high officials of the province had absented
themselves, while one of them had died. Of the men who had so absented
themselves one had gone abroad, while the other three had remained
in Manila or Cavite under the government of the United States. [367]

The people of the provinces obeyed the men who had arms in their
hands. It is not probable that many of them had any conviction
concerning the form of government which would be best for the
Philippines. There were no signs of a spontaneous desire for a
republic. Orders came from the group about Aguinaldo, and the people
accepted a dictator and a republic as they accepted a president and
a republic, without knowing, and probably without caring very much,
what it all meant, except that they hoped that taxes would cease with
the departure of the friars. A determined and well-organized minority
had succeeded in imposing its will upon an unorganized, heterogeneous,
and leaderless majority.

As soon as a province was occupied by the Insurgents it was divided
into territorial zones within which command was exerted by military
officers. On July 20, 1898, Cavite had been divided into four zones,
and next day Brigadier-General Artemio Ricarte was placed in command
of the province and the first zone.

By July 7 Bulacan Province had been divided into six zones, and Nueva
Ecija into four zones, with a separate commander for each zone. These
men established the government prescribed by Aguinaldo's decrees of
the middle of June. Probably by the end of July Aguinaldo's municipal
governments had been established in the greater part of the towns
of Luzon. These governments were not established by the mass of the
people. The mass of the people were not consulted, but they were not
in the habit of being consulted in such matters and probably saw no
necessity for it in this case. As an evidence of this we have the fact
that from the beginning the acts of election were almost always drawn
up in Spanish, although by far the greater portion of the people of
the archipelago spoke only the native dialects.

The method of establishing these municipal governments employed in
Cavite in June, 1898, was continued to the end of Aguinaldo's rule. It
was the same in different places and at different times. Data obtained
from reports and documents written in towns far removed from each
other follow. They must be considered together in order to obtain an
idea of what this method really was.

When the Insurgent movement had progressed sufficiently far, the
leaders collected their adherents and obtained recognition as the
heads of their provinces or districts. For example, representatives
of the towns of Pampanga assembled at San Fernando on June 26,
1898, and under the presidency of General Maximo Hizon agreed to
yield him "complete obedience as military governor of the province
and representative of the illustrious dictator of these Philippine
Islands." [368] The town of Macabebe refused to send any delegates
to this gathering. Commissioners, in almost every case officers of
Aguinaldo's army, were empowered by him to establish the so-called
republican government. They appointed delegates who proceeded to
the smaller towns and held elections; but whenever possible the
commissioner of Aguinaldo presided. In many cases these delegates were
lieutenants of the army. The commissioners selected the electors,
for they had all to be "marked out by their good conduct, their
wealth, and their social position," and they had all to be in favour
of independence. They then presided at the elections, which were
_viva voce_. They apparently selected the people to be elected, and
forwarded a record of the proceedings to the central government. The
election had to be approved by the dictator or president before the
successful candidates could assume the duties of their offices. Later
on, the military commanders remote from the seat of government were
authorized to approve elections and install the successful candidates,
but the records of election had even then to be forwarded to the
capital for approval, the action of the commissioner not being final.

The commissioners do not seem to have been able to find many men
who had the necessary requisites for electors. In the town of Lipa,
Batangas Province, with a population of forty thousand seven hundred
forty-three, at the election held July 3, 1898, a presidente was chosen
for whom twenty-five votes were cast. On November 23, 1898, an election
was held at Vigan, Ilocos Sur, for a presidente to succeed one who had
been elected representative in congress. One hundred and sixteen votes
were cast. The population of Vigan is nineteen thousand. On October 5,
1898, at Echague, Isabela Province, a presidente was elected for whom
fifty-four votes were cast. The population of Echague is fifty-four
thousand. On October 2, 1898, at Cabagan Nuevo, Isabela, one hundred
and eleven men voted out of a population of sixty-two hundred and
forty. On January 29, 1899, the town of Hernani, in Samar, elected its
municipal officials under the supervision of V. Lukban. Fifty-four men
voted. The town has a population of twenty-five hundred and fifty-five.

The elections, so-called, were not always held without protest. For
example, the town of San Jose, Batangas, protested unavailingly
to Aguinaldo against the result of an election held at 10 P.M.,
in a storm of rain. Men who had been on friendly terms with the
Spaniards were usually excluded from all participation. If in spite
of the precautions taken men were elected who were disliked by the
commissioner or his supporters, the election could be set aside on the
ground that the person elected was not an adherent of the revolution.

The elections were often held in a singular manner, as in the following
case: [369]--

"On August 20, 1898, four men of Tondo appeared before Aguinaldo on
Bacoor and announced that they were representatives of the people
of the district, who loved liberty. Then in accordance with the
directions of the president of the republic under the supervision of
the secretary of the interior, they drew lots from a hat to decide how
the offices of the head of the district, delegate of police, delegate
of the treasury and delegate of justice were to be distributed. The
decision having been made in this simple fashion, Aguinaldo gravely
approved the election as expressing the will of the people. Perhaps
it did, for they seem to have continued, at least for a time, to obey
them. On November 14, 1898, Aguinaldo again approved an election for
local officials in Tondo which since August 13 had been within the
American lines."

On August 23 San Carlos, in Pangasinan Province, a town of twenty-three
thousand people, elected its officials under the new form of
government. The presidente chosen was a well-known member of the
Katipunan, and before the election was held announced his intention
of killing any one who was chosen for the position for which he was a
candidate. [370] He was accordingly elected. In spite of this grave
informality, an informality which formed one ground for a protest
on the part of some of the people of the town, Aguinaldo approved
the election.

On October 21, 1898, an election was held under the supervision of
the military commander in Camarines for the municipal officials of the
town of Yriga. [371] The voting was oral, and a secretary wrote down
the votes for the two candidates under direction of the commissioner,
who finally announced that the candidate whose friend he was had been
elected, but without stating how many votes he had received. This
newly elected head of the town had the town crier on the following
night publish through the streets an address to the people, in which
he thanked those who had voted for him and warned those who had not
that it would be well for them to beware. The Spanish law known as
the Maura Law, which regulated the elections in the municipalities
under the Spanish government, provided for a limited electoral body,
composed largely of ex-officials of the municipalities. The choosing of
an electoral body by the military commander of a district probably did
not seem strange to the people. The provincial and municipal officials
were established in office by armed men, and they were obeyed because
they had been installed by armed men; but it was a form of election
to which people, as a rule, saw no reason to object. There were,
however, in many cases bitter complaints of the abuses committed by
the officers thus "elected."

This form of government spread with the advance of Aguinaldo's
arms. Municipal elections were held in Tarlac in July, in Ilocos
Norte and Tayabas in August, in Benguet and the Batanes Islands in
September, 1898, in Panay in December, 1898, and in Leyte and Samar
in January, 1899.

On December 27 Antonio Luna wrote that all the provinces of Luzon,
Mindoro, Marinduque, Masbate, and Ticao, Romblon, part of Panay,
the Batanes, and Babuyanes Islands were under the jurisdiction of
the insurgent government. [372]

By October 7, 1898, 14 of the 36 provinces and districts into
which Luzon had been divided by the Spanish government had civil
governors. [373] These 14 were Tagalog provinces or provinces which
the Tagalogs controlled. The other provinces were still under military
rule, and, indeed, even the provinces under civilians were dominated
by their military commanders. With the manner of holding elections
which prevailed, the governors must have been men who were in favour
of the military party in force, for otherwise they would not have
been elected. [374]

It is not probable that the number of provinces under civil
governors much increased. If in Pangasinan Province, where there
are many Tagalogs, organizations opposed to the rule of Aguinaldo
could cause serious disorders, as was the case, it must have been
considered expedient for the success of the attempt of the Tagalogs,
who form only a fifth of the population, to dominate the archipelago,
that all provinces in which an effective majority of the people were
not of that tribe, should be kept under military rule. The municipal
governments which had been established in Luzon were in the hands of
Aguinaldo's adherents, or of men who it was hoped would prove loyal
to him. They were men of the Spanish-speaking group, which has always
dominated the people of the islands. They were probably not as a rule
men of means. Many of them, perhaps most of them, had been clerks
and employees under the Spanish government, and they saw no reason
for changing the methods of town administration which had then been
followed. The municipal taxes, the estimates for expenditures, and
the regulations for town government, were but little modified from
those they found in force. In many ways such changes as were made
were for the worse.

Once installed in power, Aguinaldo's officials were required to
exercise over the mass of the people about the same control that
had always been exercised over them. The governing group considered
that they were perfectly capable of providing for the welfare of
the islands, and that it was the duty of the people to obey them
without question.

When the insurgent force was increased in preparation for war with
the Americans a large number of municipal officials resigned, or
attempted to do so. It was not easy for a municipal official under
Aguinaldo's government to resign. A resignation, to be accepted, had
to be accompanied by the certificate of a physician that the person
concerned was unfit to perform the duties of his office. Judging by
the record, [375] an epidemic seems to have attacked the municipal
officials in January, 1899. It is probable that they saw that war
was inevitable and that they did not wish to remain in charge of
the towns and be responsible for providing for the necessities of
"the liberating army." In Pangasinan in that month men could not
leave their barrios without obtaining the permission of the headman,
and in one town men who had attempted to sell their property for the
purpose of going to Manila were, on January 17, ordered to be arrested
and their conduct investigated. [376]

Aguinaldo, having established himself at Malolos, ordered the congress
provided for in his decree of June 23, 1898, to assemble at the
capital on September 15,1898, and appointed a number of provisional
representatives for provinces and islands not under his control. [377]
It has often been claimed that Aguinaldo's government controlled at
this time the whole archipelago, except the bay and city of Manila
and the town of Cavite. [378]

Blount quotes the following statement from the report of the First
Philippine Commission:--

"While the Spanish troops now remained quietly in Manila, the Filipino
forces made themselves masters of the entire island except that
city." [379]

I signed that statement, and signed it in good faith; nevertheless,
it is untrue. The Filipino forces never controlled the territory
now known as Ifugao, Bontoc, Kalinga or Apayao, much less that
occupied by the Negritos on the east coast of Luzon, but this is
not all. There exists among the Insurgent records a very important
document, prepared by Mabini, showing that when the call for the
first session of the Filipino congress was issued, there were no less
than sixty-one provinces and _commandancias_, which the Insurgents,
when talking among themselves, did not even claim to control, and
twenty-one of these were in or immediately adjacent to Luzon. [380]

The men who composed this congress were among the ablest natives of
the archipelago; but representative institutions mean nothing unless
they represent the people; if they do not, they are a conscious lie
devised either to deceive the people of the country or foreign nations,
and it is not possible for any system founded upon a lie to endure. A
real republic must be founded not upon a few brilliant men to compose
the governing group but upon a people trained in self-restraint and
accustomed to govern by compromise and concession, not by force. To
endure it must be based upon a solid foundation of self-control, of
self-respect and of respect for the rights of others upon the part of
the great majority of the common people. If it is not, the government
which follows a period of tumult, confusion and civil war will be a
government of the sword. The record the Philippine republic has left
behind it contains nothing to confirm the belief that it would have
endured, even in name, if the destinies of the islands had been left
in the hands of the men who set it up.

The national assembly met on the appointed day in the parish church
of Barasoain, Malolos, which had been set aside for the meetings
of congress. This body probably had then more elected members than
at its subsequent meetings, but even so it contained a large number
of men who were appointed by Aguinaldo after consultation with his
council to represent provinces which they had never even seen.

From a "list of representatives of the provinces and districts,
selected by election and appointment by the government up to July
7, 1899, with incomplete list of October 6, 1899" [381] I find
that there were 193 members, of whom forty-two were elected and one
hundred fifty-one were appointed. This congress was therefore not an
elective body. Was it in any sense representative? The following table,
showing the distribution of delegates between the several peoples,
will enable us to answer this question.

In considering this table it must be remembered that the relationship
given between the number of delegates assigned to a given people
and the number of individuals composing it is only approximate, as
no one of these peoples is strictly limited to the provinces where
it predominates.

I have classified the provinces as Tagalog, Visayan, etc., according
to census returns showing the people who form a majority of their
inhabitants in each case. [382]

People Number Elected Appointed
Delegates Delegates
Visayans 3,219,030 0 68
Tagalogs 1,460,695 18 19
Ilocanos 803,942 7 11
Bicols 566,365 4 7
Pangasinans 343,686 2 2
Pampangans 280,984 2 2
Cagayans 159,648 4 6
Zambalans 48,823 1 2
Non-Christians 647,740 4 34
42 151

It will be noted that the Tagalog provinces had eighteen out of a
total of forty-two elected delegates. The Visayans, by far the most
numerous people in the islands, did not have one. The non-Christian
provinces had a very disproportionately large total of delegates, of
whom four are put down as elected, but on examination we find that one
of these is from Lepanto, the capital of which was an Ilocano town; one
is from Nueva Vizcaya, where there is a considerable Cagayan-Ilocano
population; one is from Benguet, the capital of which was an Ilocano
town, and one from Tiagan, which was an Iloeano settlement. These
delegates should therefore really be credited to the Ilocanos.

If the individual relationships of the several members are considered,
the result is even more striking. Of the thirty-eight delegates
assigned to the non-Christian provinces, one only, good old Lino
Abaya of Tiagan, was a non-Christian. Many of the non-Christian
_comandancias_ were given a number of delegates wholly disproportionate
to their population, and in this way the congress was stuffed full
of Tagalogs.

Think of Filipe Buencamino, of Aguinaldo's cabinet, representing the
Moros of Zamboanga; of the mild, scholarly botanist Leon Guerrero
representing the Moros, Bagobos, Mandayas and Manobos of Davao; of
Jose M. Lerma, the unscrupulous politician of the province of Bataan,
just across the bay from Manila, representing the wild Moros of
Cotabato; of Juan Tuason, a timid Chinese _mestizo_ Manila business
man, representing the Yacan and Samal Moros of Basilan; of my good
friend Benito Legarda, since a member of the Philippine Commission,
and a resident delegate from the Philippines to the congress of the
United States, representing the bloody Moros of Jolo! Yet they appear
as representatives of these several regions.

Few, indeed, of the delegates from non-Christian territory had ever
set foot in the provinces or _comandancias_ from which they were
appointed, or would have been able to so much as name the wild tribe
or tribes inhabiting them.

I have been furnished a list, made up with all possible care by
competent persons, from which it appears that there were eighty-five
delegates actually present at the opening of congress, of whom
fifty-nine were Tagalogs, five Bicols, three Pampangans, two Visayans,
and one a Zambalan. For the others there are no data available. Yet
it has been claimed that this was a representative body! It was a
Tagalog body, without enough representatives of any other one of the
numerous Philippine peoples to be worth mentioning.

With a congress thus organized, Aguinaldo should have had no difficulty
in obtaining any legislation he desired.

The committee of congress appointed to draw up a constitution set
to work promptly, and by October 16,1898, had proceeded so far
with their work that Buencamino was able to write to Aguinaldo that
while he had been of the opinion that it would have been best for
him to continue as a dictator aided by a committee of able men,
yet it would now be a blow to the prestige of congress to suspend
its sessions. Aguinaldo noted upon this letter the fact that he did
not approve of a constitution. [383]

Apparently early in December the committee submitted their project. In
presenting it to congress they said [384] that--

"The work whose results the commission has the honour to present for
the consideration of congress has been largely a matter of selection;
in executing it not only has the French constitution been used,
but also those of Belgium, Mexico, Brazil, Nicaragua, Costa Rica,
and Guatemala, as we have considered those nations as most resembling
the Filipino people."

The most important difference between this project and the actual
constitution adopted was that, although the project provided that
the Dominican, Recollect, Franciscan and Augustinian friars should
be expelled from the country and that their estates should become
the property of the state, yet it recognized the Catholic religion
as that of the state and forbade state contribution to the support
of any other, although it permitted the practice in private of any
religion not opposed to morality, which did not threaten the safety of
the country. The government was authorized to negotiate a concordat
with the Pope for the regulation of the relations between church and
state. A strong party was in favour of this recognition, but it finally
failed of adoption, and the constitution as promulgated provided
for the freedom and equality of religion and for free and compulsory
education which had not been provided for in the original project. The
constitution as approved forbade the granting of titles of nobility,
decorations or honorary titles by the state to any Filipino. This
paragraph did not exist in the original project, which merely forbade
any Filipino to accept them without the consent of the government.

Mabini, the ablest of all Aguinaldo's advisers, did not approve of the
constitution. He himself had drawn up a project for a constitution
during June, 1898, but it was not accepted by the committee, the
greater part of whom were Catholics and for that reason opposed to
Mabini, who was a bitter antagonist of that church. And yet when
separation of church and state was finally provided for it did not
please Mabini, who, although he was opposed to church control, wrote
to Aguinaldo [385] that the constitution as passed by congress was not
acceptable and should not be promulgated because the constitutional
guarantees of individual liberty could not be maintained, as the
army had to be in control for the time being, and furthermore it was
not expedient to separate church and state, as this separation would
alienate many of their adherents. Indeed, there was not much in the
constitution which he thought ought to take immediate effect, [386]
and he wrote that congress was ill-disposed toward him because he had
refused to agree to its promulgation. Existing conditions were such
that he believed that all powers should be vested in one person. He
warned Aguinaldo that if the constitution were put in force, he would
be at the mercy of his secretaries. On January 1, 1899, Aguinaldo,
probably at the suggestion of Mabini, proposed certain changes in
it. [387]

Evidently the provisions of the constitution did not worry Aguinaldo
much, as is shown by his reply to the request by some of his officers
for information as to what reward those who were first in the attack
on Manila should receive. He promised them such titles as marquis,
duke, etc. [388]

On January 2, 1899, Aguinaldo announced the formation of a new cabinet
made up as follows: Apolinario Mabini president and secretary of
foreign affairs; Teodoro Sandico, secretary of the interior; Mariano
Trias, secretary of the treasury; Baldomero Aguinaldo, secretary
of war and navy, and Gracio Gonzaga, secretary of _fomento_. [389]
On January 4 Mabini took the oath of office as the president of the
council of government. This body met twice a week at Malolos on set
days, and at the close of its deliberations forwarded to Aguinaldo
a statement of the subjects discussed and the conclusions reached
for his decision. The president of the republic did not preside at,
or take part in, its deliberations.

On January 4, 1899, General Otis issued a proclamation in which
he announced that the United States had obtained possession of the
Philippines and that its government would beextended over the islands
of the archipelago. Aguinaldo replied next day with one which, if
not intended to be a declaration of war, was at least a warning that
hostilities were imminent. This proclamation was carried into Manila
by his emissaries and posted up over the one issued by the American
commander. It was a challenge to a trial of strength, and Aguinaldo
and his advisers hastened their preparations for the coming combat.

The secretary of the interior on the same day sent an order to the
heads of all provinces directing the organization of territorial
militia to resist the American invasion, and ordering the heads of the
towns to hold meetings of the people to protest against the aggression
of the United States. They were held in accordance with these orders,
and records of the proceedings were sent to Malolos and published in
the official organ of the government as evidence of the feeling of the
people. It was, however, not considered necessary in publishing them
to mention the fact that they had been held in compliance with orders.

On January 14, 1899, Mabini wrote to Aguinaldo [390] recommending
changes in the proposed constitution, which he still liked as little
as ever. He was afraid that Negros and Panay would refuse to accept
the form of government it prescribed. The worst thing about it was
that the Americans would be less disposed to recognize Aguinaldo's
government; for when they saw the constitution they would know, as it
made no mention of them, that the Filipinos wanted independence. Mabini
thought that it was possible that the wording of the constitution
might have been deliberately planned by members of the congress in
favour of annexation to the United States, so that that country would
be warned, would become more mistrustful, and would refuse to recognize
Aguinaldo's government. Whatever the president of the council may have
thought about the theoretical advisability of a congress to represent
the people, he found one much in the way when he had obtained it.

Buencamino advised that the constitution should be approved and
promulgated; one argument was that the congress had been consulted in
the matter of a national loan, and if it was dissolved, there could
be no loan. This was apparently the only matter upon which it had
been consulted. [391]

The constitution of the Philippine Republic was ratified at a session
of the congress on January 20, 1899.

On January 21, 1899, Aguinaldo sanctioned it and ordered that it should
be "kept, complied with and executed in all its parts because it is
the sovereign will of the Philippine people." [392] The constitution
provided for a government of three cooerdinate powers, executive,
legislative and judicial. Whether it provided for a form of government
which would have succeeded in the Philippines was not determined by
actual experience. It was never really put in force for war with the
United States began in two weeks and the constitution must stand as the
expression of the ideas of a certain group of educated natives rather
than as the working formula for the actual conduct of the political
life of a nation. One proof of this is the fact that not until June 8,
1899, were Aguinaldo's decrees upon the registration of marriages and
upon civil marriage, dated June 20,1898, revoked, and the provisions
of the constitution concerning marriage put in effect. [393]

Aguinaldo had approved the constitution; he had informed the foreign
consuls and General Otis that it had been promulgated and become the
law of the land. It was not promulgated. It had not become the law of
the land. It served one important purpose. It passed into the hands
of the Americans and showed them the ability and the aspirations of
certain individuals of the archipelago, but Mabini and his followers
did not believe in its form or in its provisions, and Mabini at least
was emphatic in his declarations that the time had not yet come for it
to be put into effect. On January 24, 1899, he wrote to Aguinaldo that
if it should be promulgated it would be absolutely necessary to give
the president the veto power, and replace the elected representatives
by others appointed by the government. If this were not done the
president would be at the mercy of congress, and the people, seeing
that disagreement between the executive government and the congress
was the cause of its misfortunes, would start another revolutionary
movement to destroy both of them. [394]

As long as Mabini remained in power the constitution was mere
paper. Its adoption was not indicative of the capacity of the people to
maintain self-government. It expressed only the academic aspirations
of the men who drafted it. There is not the slightest evidence from
any previous or subsequent experience of the people that it would have
worked in practice. It was enacted for the misleading of Americans
rather than for the benefit of the Filipinos.

While the government of Aguinaldo was called a republic, it was in
fact a Tagalog military oligarchy in which the great mass of the
people had no share. Their duty was only to give soldiers for the
army and labourers for the fields, and to obey without question the
orders they received from the military heads of their provinces.

There is no cause for vain regrets. We did not destroy a republic in
the Philippines. There never was anything there to destroy which even
remotely resembled a republic.


The Conduct of the War

It is not my intention to attempt to write a history of the war which
began on February 4, 1899, nor to discuss any one of its several
campaigns. I propose to limit myself to a statement of the conditions
under which it was conducted, and a description of the two periods
into which it may be divided.

From the outset the Insurgent soldiers were treated with marked
severity by their leaders. On June 17, 1898, Aguinaldo issued an order
to the military chiefs of certain towns in Cavite providing that a
soldier wasting ammunition should be punished with twelve lashes for
a first offence, twenty-four for a second, and court-martialled and
"severely punished" for a third. [395]

On November 16, 1900, General Lacuna ordered that any officer allowing
his soldiers to load their rifles when not before the enemy should be
liable to capital punishment, [396] which in practice was frequently
inflicted on soldiers for very minor offences.

Men of means were drafted into the ranks and then excused from service
on the payment of cash.

The soldiery, quartered on the towns, committed endless
abuses. Conditions were bad enough before the outbreak of hostilities,
as I have shown in the chapters dealing with Insurgent rule. They
grew rapidly worse thereafter, and human life became cheap indeed.

"The documents of this period show that the insurgent troops driven
from the front of Manila fell upon the people of the neighbouring
towns and burnt, robbed, and murdered. Either their officers lost
all control over them, or else they directed these outrages. It was
not for some days that control was regained." [397]

Endless orders were issued by Aguinaldo and other high Insurgent
officers, prohibiting rape, brigandage and robbery, and there was
grave need of them. Unfortunately they could not be enforced. Indeed
it was often impossible to distinguish between Insurgent soldiers, who
removed their uniforms or had none, and brigands pure and simple. [398]

Many men were soldiers at one time and brigands at
another. Unquestionably soldiers and brigands sometimes
cooeperated. Garrisons were withdrawn from towns which did not promptly
and fully comply with the demands of Insurgent commanders, [399]
and armed bandits appeared and plundered them.

There were some Insurgent leaders, like Cailles, who suppressed
brigandage with a heavy hand, [400] but many of them were indifferent,
even if not in alliance with the evil doers.

The Visayas

Feeling between Tagalog soldiers and Visayan people grew constantly
more bitter, and before many months had passed they fell to killing
each other. The highest officers of the "Regional Revolutionary
Government of the Visayas" protested vigorously to Aguinaldo, [401]
but without result. The situation was entirely beyond his control.

On April 20, 1899, General Delgado issued an order which tells a
significant story of conditions, and of his own weakness in dealing
with them. [402]

In Luzon General Trias of Cavite accused the soldiers and citizens
of his province of committing "robberies, assaults, kidnappings and
crimes which are committed only by barbarous and savage tribes." [403]

That very serious conditions promptly became general is conclusively
shown by the record of Aguinaldo's government for February 24, 1899,
when it decided--

"that the president of the council shall study such measures as will
put an end to the continual discord and friction between the civil
and military authorities of every province, in order that fatal
consequences may be avoided."

With such conditions prevailing among the Filipinos themselves, it was
to be expected that the laws of civilized warfare would be violated and
that American soldiers taken prisoners would sometimes be treated with
barbarity. Flags of truce were deliberately violated. [404] American
soldiers were trapped, poisoned [405] and murdered in other ways. [406]

It was promptly charged in the United States that American soldiers
were committing barbarities, and Blount has revived these old tales.

I know personally that during the early days of the war Insurgent
prisoners and wounded were treated with the greatest humanity and

A part of the Insurgent plan of campaign was the circulation of the
most shocking statements concerning the abuses committed by American
soldiers. I have elsewhere described [407] the fate that overtook
Colonel Arguelles, in part because he told the truth as to the humane
treatment by the Americans of prisoners and wounded.

Not only did some of those who did this forfeit their lives, but
newspaper articles, military orders, and proclamations issued by civil
officers informed the people that the American soldiers stole, burned,
robbed, raped and murdered. Especial stress was laid on their alleged
wholesale violations of women, partly to turn the powerful influence of
the women as a whole against them, and partly to show that they were
no better than the Insurgents themselves, who frequently committed
rape. [408]

These horrible tales were at first believed even by some of the
responsible Insurgent officers in remote regions, [409] but all such
men soon learned the truth, which was known to most of them from
the start.

In official correspondence between them, not intended for the public,
orders were given to use women as bearers of despatches for the
reason that Americans did not search them. [410] More significant
yet, when conditions became bad in the provinces, Insurgent officers
sent their women and children to seek American protection in Manila
or elsewhere. Cartload after cartload of them came in at Angeles,
shortly after General Jacob H. Smith took that place. Aguinaldo himself
followed this procedure, as is shown by the following extracts from
Villa's famous diary: [411]--

"_December 22._--It was 7 A.M. when we arrived in Ambayuan. Here
we found the women worn out from the painful journey they had
suffered. They were seated on the ground. In their faces were observed
indications of the ravages of hunger; but they are always smiling,
saying they would prefer suffering in these mountains to being under
the dominion of the Americans, and that such sacrifices are the duties
of every patriot who loves his country.

"We secured some camotes in this settlement, cooked them immediately,
and everybody had breakfast. Our appetites were satisfied.

"The honorable president had already decided some days before to send
all the women to Manila, including his family, and this was his motive
in hurrying his family forward with him.

* * * * *

"_December 24._--We find ourselves still in Talubin. About 8 o'clock
this morning a report came saying the Americans had arrived at Bontoc,
the provincial capital, the nearest town to Talubin, and distant
from it two hours by the road. An immediate decision was made. The
honourable president told his family and the other women that they
should remain in the settlement and allow themselves to be caught by
the Americans, and he named Senors Sytiar and Paez to remain also,
with the obligation of conducting the women to Manila. As soon as the
arrangement was effected, the honourable president prepared himself
for the march. The parting was a very sad one for himself and for
his family.

"The honourable president left Talubin at 11 o'clock in the morning,
his family and the other women remaining behind with two gentlemen
charged with conducting them to Manila." [412]

In this, as in all other similar cases, the women were kindly treated
and safely conducted to their destination. Aguinaldo and his fellows
knew the happy fate of the members of his own family, as is shown by
a later entry:--

"_February 6._--We have been informed that the mother and son of the
honourable president are at Manila, living in the house of Don Benito
Legarda, and that they reached that capital long before the wife and
sister of the honourable president. We have also learned that Senor
Buencamino, and Tirona, and Concepcion are prisoners of the American
authorities in Manila. With reference to the wife and sister of the
honourable president and the two Leyba sisters, it is said that they
went to Vigan and from there went by steamer to Manila." [413]

The mother and son, accompanied by Buencamino, had allowed themselves
to be captured at an earlier date. What shall we say of a leader who
would turn his mother, wife, sister and son over to American soldiers
for safekeeping, and then continue to denounce the latter as murderers,
and violaters of women? Aguinaldo did just this. That the Insurgent
leaders were early and fully aware of the treatment accorded their
wounded is shown by the following extract from a letter to General
Moxica of Leyte, dated March 2, 1900, giving instructions as to what
should be done with wounded men:--

"If by chance any of our men are wounded on the field or elsewhere,
efforts must be made to take away the rifles and ammunition at once and
carry them away as far as possible, so that they may not be captured by
the enemy; and if the wounded cannot be immediately removed elsewhere
or retreat from the place, let them be left there, because it is better
to save the arms than the men, as there are many Filipinos to fill up
the ranks, but rifles are scarce and difficult to secure for battle;
and besides the Americans, coming upon any wounded, take good care
of them, while the rifles are destroyed; therefore, I repeat, they
must endeavour to save the arms rather than the men." [414]

There were some rare individual instances in which uninjured Filipinos
were treated with severity, and even with cruelty, by American
soldiers. They occurred for the most part late in the war when the
"water cure" in mild form was sometimes employed in order to compel
persons who had guilty knowledge of the whereabouts of firearms to
tell what they knew, to the end that the perpetration of horrible
barbarities on the common people, and the assassination of those who
had sought American protection, might the more promptly cease. Usually
the sufferers were themselves bloody murderers, who had only to tell
the truth to escape punishment. The men who performed these cruel
acts knew what treatment was being commonly accorded to Filipinos,
and in some instances to their own comrades. I mention these facts to
explain, not to excuse, their conduct. Cruel acts cannot be excused,
but those referred to seldom resulted in any permanent injury to the
men who suffered them, and were the rare and inevitable exceptions
to the general rule that the war was waged, so far as the Americans
were concerned, with a degree of humanity hitherto unprecedented under
similar conditions. The Insurgents violated every rule of civilized
warfare, yet oathbreakers, spies and men fighting in citizens' clothes
not only were not shot by the Americans, as they might very properly
have been, but were often turned loose with a mere warning not to
offend again.

The false news circulated to aid the Insurgent cause was by no means
limited to such matters. Every time their troops made a stand they were
promptly defeated and driven back, but their faltering courage was
bolstered up by glorious tidings of wonderful, but wholly imaginary,
victories won elsewhere. It was often reported that many times more
Americans had fallen in some insignificant skirmish than were actually
killed in the whole war, while generals perished by the dozen and
colonels by the thousand. Our losses on March 27, 1899, in fighting
north of Manila, were said to be twenty-eight thousand. In reality
only fifty-six Americans were killed in all northern Luzon during
the entire month.

On April 26, 1899, the governor of Iloilo published the following
remarkable news items among others:--

"_Pavia_, April 6th, 1899.

"The Liberating Army of the Visayan Islands to the Local Presidents
of the towns shown on the margin:

"_Towns:_ Santa Barbara, Pavia, Leganes, Zarraga, Dumangas, Batac
Viejo, Tuilao, Batac Nuevo, Banate.

* * * * *

"Santa Ana taken by Americans burning town our troops advancing to
Rosario and Escolta Americans request parley account death General
and officers and many soldiers.

* * * * *

"At 3 P.M. of the 14th battle at Santolan 500 American prisoners who
are to be taken to Malolos.

"At 9.45 P.M. Commissioner Laguna details 6000 more Americans dead
and 600 prisoners.

"Otis requests parley, and our representatives being present, he tells
them to request peace and conditions, to which they replied that he,
and not they, should see to that, so the parley accomplished nothing.

"To-day, Wednesday, a decisive battle will be fought.

"Among the 5000 prisoners there are two generals. Tomorrow 7.15 Pasig
in our power. Americans little by little leaving for Manila.

"General Malbar to Provincial Chief Batangas.

"According to reports by telegraph hostilities have commenced and
all at Santa Mesa have fallen into our hands, also Pasay and Maytubig.

"American boat surrendered at Laguna de Bay many prisoners taken.

"General Ricarte to Provincial Chief of Batangas: Battle stopped by
truce Japan and Germany intervene to learn who provoked war.

"Foreigners favor parley one American general and chiefs and officers
dead." [415]

Santa Ana is a suburb of Manila. The Rosario and Escolta are the main
business streets of the city.

Apparently the Insurgents must have thought that colonels were as
numerous in our army as in theirs, for they reported two thousand of
them killed on February 6, 1899, and threw in one general for good
measure. [416]

We learn from the _Filipino Herald_ for February 23, 1899, that on that
day the Filipino army captured and occupied the suburbs of Manila,
while American troops were besieged in the outskirts of the city,
at La Loma, and in the neighbouring town of Caloocan. [417]

But why continue. No tale concerning American losses in the Philippines
was too fantastic to be told by the leaders and believed by the
soldiery and the populace. The American soldiers were even said to
be refusing to fight, and great prisons were being constructed in
order properly to punish them.

General MacArthur and his entire staff were captured before March 2,
1900, according to a letter sent to General Moxica of Leyte on that
date. [418]

And what of conditions in the United States during this troubled
period? We learn from the Insurgent records that prior to January 15,
1900, "the Union Army" had met with a new disaster, as a result of
which President McKinley tendered his resignation, being succeeded
by Mr. Bryan. Philippine independence was to be proclaimed on
February 4, 1899. On January 20, "General Otis's successor, John
Waterly, of the democratic party," arrived at Manila with papers and
instructions relative to proclaiming the Philippine Republic. [419]
Things now went from bad to worse. The trouble between democrats
and republicans resulted in an insurrection. Before August, 1901,
President McKinley had brought about strained relations between
Germany and the United States by bribing an anarchist to assassinate
the German Emperor. [420] Before September 15, 1901, he had been
killed by a member of the Democratic party, and the Filipinos could
acclaim their independence. [421]

The first period of the war, which we may term the period of organized
armed resistance, drew rapidly to its close, and there followed the
second period, characterized by guerrilla tactics on the part of
the Insurgents.

On September 14, 1899, Aguinaldo accepted the advice of General Pio
del Pilar, ex-bandit, if indeed he had ever ceased to rob and murder,
and authorized this man, whom he had been again and again asked to
remove, to begin guerrilla warfare in Bulacan. Guerrilla tactics
were duly authorized for, and had been adopted by, Insurgent forces
everywhere before the end of November.

Of this style of fighting Taylor has truly said:--

"If war in certain of its aspects is a temporary reversion to
barbarism, guerrilla warfare is a temporary reversion to savagery. The
man who orders it assumes a grave responsibility before the people
whose fate is in his hands, for serious as is the material destruction
which this method of warfare entails, the destruction to the orderly
habits of mind and thought which, at bottom, are civilization, is
even more serious. Robbery and brigandage, murder and arson follow
in its wake.

Guerrilla warfare means a policy of destruction, a policy of terror,
and never yet, however great may have been the injury caused by it,
however much it may have prolonged the war in which it has been
employed, has it secured a termination favorable to the people who
have chosen it." [422]

The case under discussion furnished no exception to the general rule.

Such semblance of discipline as had previously existed among the
Insurgent soldiers rapidly disappeared. Conditions had been very
bad under the "Republic" and worse during the first period of the
war. During the second period they rapidly became unendurable in
many regions, and the common people were driven into the arms of
the Americans, in spite of threats of death, barbarously carried out
by Insurgent officers, soldiers and agents in thousands of cases. I
have described at some length the conditions which now arose in the
chapter on Murder as a Governmental Agency, to which the reader is
referred for details. [423]

In the effort to protect the towns which showed themselves friendly,
the American forces were divided, subdivided and subdivided again. On
March 1, 1901, they were occupying no less than five hundred two
stations. By December of the same year the number had increased
to six hundred thirty-nine, with an average of less than sixty men
to a post. As a result of the protection thus afforded and of the
humane conduct of our troops, the people turned to us in constantly
increasing numbers.

It remained to stamp out the dying embers of insurrection, while
continuing to seek to protect those who put their trust in us. Further
subdivision of the troops in order to garrison more points was hardly
possible, but field operations were actively pushed. One after another
the Insurgent leaders were captured or voluntarily surrendered. Most
officers of importance issued explanatory statements to the people
shortly after giving up active field operations, whether they
surrendered voluntarily or were taken prisoners. Aguinaldo himself
was captured on March 23, 1901, at Palanan, the northernmost point
on the east coast of Luzon inhabited by civilized people. No place
in the islands, inhabited by Filipinos, is more completely isolated,
and he had long been almost entirely cut off from his followers,
many of whom believed him to be dead. On April 19, 1901, he issued
an address to the Filipino people, in which he clearly recognized
the fact that they wanted peace. He said:--

"_Manila_, April 19, 1901.

"To the Filipino People:--

"I believe that I am not in error in presuming that the unhappy fate
to which my adverse fortune has led me is not a surprise to those
who have been familiar day by day with the progress of the war. The
lessons thus taught, the full meaning of which has recently come to my
knowledge, suggested to me with irresistible force that the complete
termination of hostilities and a lasting peace are not only desirable
but absolutely essential to the welfare of the Philippines.

"The Filipinos have never been dismayed by their weakness, nor have
they faltered in following the path pointed out by their fortitude
and courage. The time has come, however, in which they find their
advance along the path impeded by an irresistible force--a force
which, while it restrains them, yet enlightens the mind and opens
another course by presenting to them the cause of peace. This cause
has been joyfully embraced by a majority of our fellow-countrymen,
who have already united around the glorious and sovereign banner of
the United States. In this banner they repose their trust in the
belief that under its protection our people will attain all the
promised liberties which they are even now beginning to enjoy.

"The country has declared unmistakably in favor of peace; so be
it. Enough of blood; enough of tears and desolation. This wish
cannot be ignored by the men still in arms if they are animated by no
other desire than to serve this noble people which has thus clearly
manifested its will.

"So also do I respect this will now that it is known to me, and
after mature deliberation resolutely proclaim to the world that I
cannot refuse to heed the voice of a people longing for peace, nor
the lamentations of thousands of families yearning to see their dear
ones in the enjoyment of the liberty promised by the generosity of
the great American nation.

"By acknowledging and accepting the sovereignty of the United States
throughout the entire Archipelago, as I now do without any reservation
whatsoever, I believe that I am serving thee, my beloved country. May
happiness be theirs.

"_Emilio Aguinaldo_. [424]

"_Manila_, April 19, 1901."

This announcement of Aguinaldo, published in Spanish, Tagalog and
English, undoubtedly hastened the end of the war, but it did not lead
to immediate general surrender, for as Taylor has very truly said:--

"A force like Aguinaldo's could not be surrendered. It had been torn by
internal dissensions and the bonds of discipline had always been very
lax. It had originally been held together by a lively expectation of
the advantages to be obtained from the pillage of Manila. That hope had
disappeared, and the leaders had become the lords of life and property
each in his own province. It was a force which could disintegrate,
but which could not surrender. Only armies can do that. Forces over
which their leaders have lost all except nominal control when beaten
do not surrender. They disintegrate by passing through the stages of
guerrilla warfare, of armed bands of highwaymen, of prowling groups
of thieves, of sturdy beggars who at opportune moments resort to
petty larceny." [425]

Aguinaldo's forces now passed through these several stages. Some of
his more important subordinates had previously been captured or had
surrendered. Others, still remaining in the field, now acted on his
advice, more or less promptly. A few remained obdurate for a time,
but as a rule not for long, and soon there remained in the field only
a very limited number of real military leaders, like General Malvar in
Batangas and General Lukban in Samar, and a very considerable number
of bandit chiefs, some of whom had posed as Insurgents. The forces
of the latter were now materially and rapidly augmented by men who
had been Insurgent officers or soldiers and while serving in this
capacity had become so enamoured of a lawless life that they were now
unwilling to settle down and work for their daily bread, preferring
to continue to live off their long-suffering fellow-countrymen,
whom they robbed and murdered more mercilessly than ever.

The war was practically over. The insurrection had failed. In my
opinion no Filipino who held out to the end for independence compared
in intellectual power with Mabini, and I deem his views as to why
it failed worthy of special attention. At the time of his death,
he left behind a memoir from which I quote the following:--

"The revolution failed because it was poorly led, because its head
conquered his place, not by meritorious, but by reprehensible actions,
because in place of supporting the men most useful to the people,
he rendered them useless because he was jealous of them. Believing
that the aggrandizement of the people was nothing more than his own
personal aggrandizement, he did not judge the merits of men by their
capacity, character, or patriotism, but by the degree of friendship
and relationship which bound them to him; and wishing to have his
favorites always ready to sacrifice themselves for him, he showed
himself complaisant to their faults. Having thus secured the people,
the people deserted him. And the people having deserted him, he had
to fall like a wax idol melted by the heat of adversity. God forbid
that we should forget so terrible a lesson learned at the cost of
unspeakable sufferings." [426]

These are by no means the only reasons why the revolution failed,
but they foredoomed it to failure.

The surrender or capture of the more respectable military element
left the unsurrendered firearms in the hands of men most of whom
were ignorant, many of whom were criminal, and nearly all of whom
were irresponsible and unscrupulous.

Strict enforcement of the rules of civilized warfare against them
was threatened, but not actually resorted to.

The situation was particularly bad in Batangas. General J. F. Bell
was put in charge there, and he found a humane and satisfactory
solution of the existing difficulties in reconcentration--not the
kind of reconcentration which made the Spaniards hated in Cuba, but
a measure of a wholly different sort. This measure and its results
have been concisely described by Taylor, as follows:--

"General Bell said he was as anxious as any one could be to avoid
making war against those who really wanted the termination of
hostilities, and it was his duty to protect them against the vengeance
of others. Over and above all these considerations in importance,
however, was the absolute necessity of making it impossible for
insurgents to procure food by levying contributions. Therefore, in
order to give those who were pacifically inclined an opportunity to
escape hardship, as far as possible, and preserve their food supply for
themselves and their families, it was determined to establish zones
of protection with limits sufficiently near all towns to enable the
small garrisons thereof to give the people living within these zones
efficient protection against ruinous exactions by insurgents. He
accordingly, 'in order to put an end to enforced contributions
now levied by insurgents upon the inhabitants of sparsely settled
and outlying barrios and districts by means of intimidation and
assassination,' ordered the commanding officers of all towns in
the provinces of Batangas and Laguna to 'immediately specify and
establish plainly marked limits surrounding each town bounding a zone
within which it may be practicable, with an average-sized garrison,
to exercise sufficient supervision over and furnish protection to
inhabitants (who desire to be peaceful) against the depredation of
armed insurgents. The limits may include the barrios which exist
sufficiently near the town to be given protection and supervision
by the garrison, and should include some ground on which live
stock could graze, but so situated that it can be patrolled and
watched. All ungarrisoned towns will be garrisoned as soon as troops
become available.

"'Commanding officers will also see that orders are at once given and
distributed to all the inhabitants within the jurisdiction of towns
over which they exercise supervision, informing them of the danger
of remaining outside of these limits, and that unless they move by
December 25 from outlying barrios and districts, with all their movable
food supplies, including rice, _palay_, [427] chickens, live stock,
etc., to within the limits of the zone established at their own or
nearest town, their property (found outside of said zone at said
date) will become liable to confiscation or destruction. The people
will be permitted to move houses from outlying districts should they
desire to do so, or to construct temporary shelter for themselves
on any vacant land without compensation to the owner, and no owner
will be permitted to deprive them of the privilege of doing so. In
the discretion of commanding officers the prices of necessities of
existence may also be regulated in the interest of those thus seeking
protection. As soon as peaceful conditions have been reestablished in
the brigade these persons will be encouraged to return to their homes,
and such assistance be rendered them as may be found practicable.'

"It was deemed best not to compel the people to enter these zones;
but they were warned that unless they accepted that protection
their property, which consisted almost entirely of food supplies,
would become liable to confiscation or destruction, because it
might be impossible to determine whether it belonged to hostile
or peaceful people. To put an end to vengeance by assassination,
it was determined to make use of the right of retaliation conferred
by General Order 100 issued by President Lincoln in 1863. A circular
telegram was published announcing an intention to retaliate by the
execution of prisoners of war in case any more were assassinated by
insurgents for political reasons. It was not found necessary to do
this. Assassinations stopped at once.

"As the campaign progressed it became more and more apparent that
a large number of poor people had contributed through fear, for the
power of the insurgents to collect came to an end after they had lost
their power of intimidation. The efficiency of the protection afforded
in such zones was the determining factor in forming the decision and
attitude of many of the natives. The protection afforded was efficient,
and from time to time many additional families entered the zones. The
sentiment for peace grew stronger steadily and natives volunteered
assistance to Americans at every hand and in every town. When these
volunteers were trustworthy they were armed and sent out into the
mountains from which they brought back guns, and insurgents, and
hundreds of half-famished men, women, and children who, released
from the intimidating influence of the insurgents, entered the zones
of protection.

"The most serious discomfort experienced by any one within these
areas was caused to the _mestizo_ ruling group, whose members bitterly
resented the blow to their prestige in being treated like every one
else. They had been accustomed to have others work for them and obey
them blindly. To a man who could speak Spanish and who had always
been the lord of his _barrio_, [428] the possibility of having to
cultivate a field with his own hands was an unthinkable and scandalous
thing. These men suffered and suffered acutely; but it was not their
bodies which suffered--it was their pride.

"Malvar surrendered on April 16, 1902. Most of the people had turned
against their once highly respected chief, and toward the end several
thousand natives of Batangas joined the Americans in their determined
hunt for the fugitive leader. Realization of the fact that the people
were against him materially aided in forcing his surrender.

"General Bell had captured or forced to surrender some 8000 to
10,000 persons actively engaged, in one capacity or another, in the
insurrection. These prisoners were rapidly released when they had
taken the oath of allegiance. By the first week of July no political
prisoners were held in this region. They had returned to their homes.

"The policy of concentrating the people in protected zones and
destroying the food which was used for the maintenance of guerrilla
bands was not new. There had been precedents even in the United
States. One of these is the order issued on August 25, 1863, by
Brigadier-General Ewing, commanding the district of the border, with
headquarters at Kansas City, Mo., in which he ordered the inhabitants
of a large part of three counties of that State to remove from their
residences within fifteen days to the protection of the military
stations which he had established. All grain and hay in that district
was ordered to be taken to those military stations. If it was not
convenient to so dispose of it, it would be burned (Rebellion Records,
Series I, Vol. XXII, Part II, p. 473). The American commanders in
the Philippines had adopted no new method of procedure in dealing
with war traitors; they had, however, effectively employed an old one.

"The insurrection had originated among the Tagalogs and had spread
like a conflagration from the territory occupied by them. The fire
had been quenched everywhere else. General Bell had now stamped out
the embers in the Tagalog provinces.

"On July 2 the Secretary of War telegraphed that the insurrection
against the sovereign authority of the United States in the Philippines
having come to an end, and provincial civil governments having been
established throughout the entire territory of the archipelago not
inhabited by Moro tribes, the office of military governor in the
archipelago was terminated. On July 4, 1902, the President of the
United States issued a proclamation of amnesty proclaiming, with
certain reservations, a full and complete pardon and amnesty to all
persons in the Philippine Archipelago who had participated in the

General Bell's motives and methods in reconcentrating the inhabitants
of this troubled region have been grossly misrepresented, and he
himself has been sadly maligned. He is the most humane of men, and
the plan which he adopted resulted in the reestablishment of law and
order at a minimum cost of human suffering.

Many of the occupants of his reconcentration camps received there
their first lessons in hygienic living. Many of them were reluctant
to leave the camps and return to their homes when normal conditions
again prevailed.

The number of Filipinos killed during the Batangas campaign was
very small. [429] Blount has sought to make it appear that partly as
an indirect consequence of war there was dreadful mortality there,
citing by way of proof the fact that the Coast and Geodetic Atlas,
published as a part of the report of the first Philippine Commission,
gave the population of Batangas as 312,192, while the census of 1903
gave it as 257,715. [430]

The report of the United States Philippine Commission for 1903
gives the population of Manila as 221,000, while in 1900 it had been
260,000. Does this mean that there had been a holocaust in Manila? Not
at all. It means only that the thousands of Filipinos who had sought
the protection of the American forces there during the period when
they feared their own soldiers in the provinces had mostly returned
to their homes. During the disturbed period in Batangas great numbers
of people took refuge in other and more peaceful regions. Some of
them returned later; others did not.

Blount further quotes a statement in the 1901 report of the Provincial
Secretary of Batangas to the effect that:

"The mortality, caused no longer by the war, but by disease, such as
malaria and dysentery, has reduced to a little over 200,000 the more
than 300,000 inhabitants which in former years the province had." [431]

Apart from the fact that these figures, showing a mortality of a
hundred thousand from disease alone, are hardly consistent with those
quoted by Blount as showing a decrease in population during a longer
period of only fifty-four thousand four hundred and forty-seven, it is
not apparent why Americans should be charged with deaths due to malaria
or dysentery, since no systematic effort to rid Batangas of these ills
had ever previously been made, and the very thing which then prevented
the adoption of the measures subsequently so successfully put forth
to this end was the disorderly conduct of the people themselves. As a
simple matter of fact, however, there was no such dreadful mortality
from these diseases at this time. Malaria has never been especially bad
in this province, and even cholera, which swept it during the period
in question and is far more readily communicated than is dysentery,
caused only twenty-three hundred and ninety-nine known deaths.

In the end peace was established and prosperity followed in its wake.

This result was brought about in part by the efficient activity of
the armed forces of the United States and in part by the efforts of
the first and second Philippine Commissions. [432]


Mr. Bryan and Independence

In order to bring home to some of my Democratic and Anti-Imperialist
friends the unreliable character of the testimony of even the very
high officers of the so-called Philippine Republic, I here quote
certain extracts from the Insurgent records, showing the important
part played, doubtless unwittingly, by Mr. William Jennings Bryan in
Philippine politics during the war. The first of these might properly
have been considered in the chapter entitled "Was Independence
Promised?" Others are instructive in that they show the use made
of false news in bolstering up the Insurgent cause, and might with
propriety have been included in the chapter on "The Conduct of the
War." I have thought it best to keep them by themselves. Further
comment on them would seem to be superfluous.

"On May 1, 1900 (P.I.R., 516.6), I. de los Santos wrote a long
letter in Tagalog and cipher to Aguinaldo, in which he reported upon
the progress of what he would have probably called the diplomatic
campaign. If this letter is to be believed, the agents in the United
States of the junta had been able to form relations which might be
of great value to them. Santos said in part:--

"'Commissioners... Senores Kant (G. Apacible) and Raff (Sixto Lopez)
duly carried out your last instructions given at Tarlac. Senor Del Pan,
sailing by way of Japan, about the middle of October, and Senor Caney
(G. Apacible), sailing by way of Europe about the 1st of November,
met in Toronto about the middle of February following. But before the
arrival of Kant, Raff had already come from Hayti (United States) and
was able to pry in upon our political friends and enemies. When they
met each other they continued the voyage incognito, as Raft had done
previously, making themselves known to a very few people; but later
on, and according to the instructions carried by Caney, they made
themselves known to a greater number of people, and have succeeded in
interviewing Bryan who happened to be in New York. Senor Raff said that
Bryan feared being present at a conference, lest he might be called a
traitor by members of his own party, and also by those of the opposite
or "imperialist" party, who are quite proud over the victories they
have gained against our people over there. Nevertheless, Raff was
able to be present and talk at some of the anti-imperialist meetings,
our political friends introducing him as a friend from the committee
(at Hongkong) and as an advocate of the cessation of the war over
there in order that our sacred rights may be given consideration by
them. And as Bryan could not personally take part in the conference,
he sent a most trusted person, his right-hand man, Dr. Gardner. The
results of the conference between Senor Raff and Dr. Gardner, the
latter acting in the name of Mr. Bryan, are as follows:--

"'1st. That we may fight on, and Bryan will never cease to defend our
sacred rights. 2nd. That we must never mention Bryan's name in our
manifestos and proclamations, lest the opposite party might say he
is a traitor. 3rd. That we are in the right; and hence he promised
in the name of Bryan that if this Senor Bryan is victorious in the
presidential campaign, he will recognize our independence without
delay. Your honored self can easily conclude from all the foregoing
that Senor Del Pan, after the receipt of these promises, concurred
with him; and he returned to inform Senor Apacible about the results
of the conference. So these two studied over the plan of the policy
to be adopted and carried out. I write you what their opinions are,
viz.: 1st, that they will reside there, pending the outcome of the
presidential contest, aiding the propaganda and enlivening it until
November, the date set for the desired thing. Owing to what Dr. Gardner
said and promised in the name of Bryan, some one ought to stay there
in order that Bryan may be approached, if he is elected, so he can
sign the recognition of our independence; and this should be done at
once, lest in his excitement over the victory he should forget his
promise. 3rd. For carrying out the two propositions just mentioned,
they request 2000 pounds sterling, that is $20,000 in silver, to
be used for the propaganda, for paying newspapers and for bribing
senators--this last clause is somewhat dangerous and impossible. And
4th, that the money must be sent immediately, and that you should
be informed not to mention the name of Bryan in the manifestos and

"'In order to answer quickly and decisively that proposition, and
as I did not have the desired money here, I answered as follows:
"Plan approved; for the sake of economy we have decided that one
of the two retire, but before doing so make arrangements, establish
communications with leaders of Bryan's party, and he who remains should
thus cultivate the relations; he who is to retire will locate himself
in Paris near Senor Katipalad (Agoncillo) with whom he will secretly
discuss political problems that may arise. So he will watch for the
opportune moment of Bryan's election, in order to go immediately to
Hayti and formally arrange the contract with Bryan." [433]

* * * * *

"'By the end of 1899, by the time guerrilla warfare was well under way,
by the time that any Filipino government, unless an expression of the
unfettered will of the nearest bandit who can muster a dozen rifles
may be called a government, had ceased to exist, a strong opposition to
the policy of the administration had arisen in the United States and a
demand for the recognition of the independence of the Philippines. The
junta in Hongkong were assured that the Democratic party would
come into power in the next elections and that this would mean the
success of the patriotic efforts of Aguinaldo and his followers. The
news was good and was forthwith spread abroad in "Extracts from our
correspondence with America," "News from our foreign agents," "News
from America," and "Translations from the foreign press"--circulars
and handbills printed on thin paper which were smuggled into the
Philippines and passed into the hands of the guerrilla leaders who
could read Spanish. They gathered their followers about them and told
them that a powerful party had arisen in America which was going to
give them all they had ever asked for. They had only to fight on,
for success was certain. In America the "Anti-imperialists" were
hanging the "Imperialists," and they should continue to harry the
American adherents among the natives of the Philippines.

"'There are a number of these publications among the papers captured
from the insurgents, and the adoption of this method of propaganda
seems to have been nearly coincident with Aguinaldo's orders declaring
guerrilla warfare. It does not seem likely that the matter contained
in them was supplied by a Filipino, for if it was he assumed a general
acquaintance among the people with American politics and American
methods which they were far from possessing.

"'In these publications the Filipinos were assured that the
Imperialists were kept in power only by the lavish contributions


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