Explanations for the American decisions to take the Philippines
The Philippines American war which is also known as the Philippines war can be attributed to the desire by the US to have an overseas Empire and the quest by the Philippines to gain freedom and govern themselves. This can be translated to a war between imperialist's forces and nationalism forces.
Philippines had been a Spanish colony for centuries when Emilio Aguinaldo started a revolution in 1896 in the Philippine Islands. The Filipino nationalists employed a form of savage guerilla war. After three years of fighting the Filipinos found themselves in what they happily considered to be an advantageous position as allies to the United States of America when they teamed together to drive away the Spaniards. In 1898, Spine and America were at war which saw the Spain's colonies of Guam, Puerto Rico and Cuba overrun with great ease by the U.S. Army. Also, Spain had her Atlantic Fleet totally destroyed outside Santiago in Cuba and her Pacific fleet similarly demolished in the Battle of Manila Bay giving the American troops access to the capital city. The Spanish colonial government surrendered in August that year giving rise to tension between the U.S troops and the Filipinos since America decided to keep Philippines as her Colony instead of granting them independence.
The American troops occupied the capital city of manila while the Philippine Nationalistic forces surrounded the city. War broke of between the two in 1899. After a long exchange of fire, the American troops manage to push the Philippine forces away from the capital and the retreated to the main Island as well as resorted to the use of Guerilla war. This was attributer to the better fire processed by the American that enabled them to easily push the Philippines away. When Aguinaldo realized that he would not win a conventional war he resorted to guerilla war. This made the war savage as ambushes and massacred rose as both side slaughtered each other mercilessly.
Indeed America managed to get the colony she wanted. Many people hard urged America to take over Philippines after the Spanish American War. These were Imperialistic mind people who wanted America to be an imperialistic nation. They claimed that it the role of the "white race" to lead "inferior" people and direct them to what they referred to as the joys of civilization. The Americans also believe that if their country did not take control of Philippine, one of the other military powers of that time, such as Germany or Japan would have taken over the Island for military and economic benefits. The American wanted to be the ones reap this benefits and dominating the global scene. Still other groups of people thought that if America took over Philippines, it would help the nation unite.
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Contrary to believe held by the military persons, citizens and other groups of people, the then American president, President McKinley felt that since America had annexed other lands before the war with Spain it was right and necessary to annex Philippines as well. All reasons given ranging from military, imperialistic or economical favored the annexation of Philippines
The imperialistic desire in this annexation however was vibrant since the United States wanted to have an external and overseas colony and Philippines had presented the best opportunity towards the realization of such a wish. Earlier as the war between America and Spain came to an end, Spain surrendered her colonies to the U.S. The U.S even paid some money to Spain in exchange for Philippines. Unknown to the Americans was the fact that Spain no longer had claim of Philippines as her territory. Have paid for Philippines as her new colony America had to fight the Filipinos in order to gain control of their country.
America managed gain control of the country after her troops captured Aguinaldo. His capture left the Filipinos without proper coordination and the Americans wan the war easily. However, pockets of Filipino guerilla fighter continued waging war in the following decade. America got her new overseer colony which provided a good base for her activities in the Far East, the Asia and Pacific region. America basically used her as the base for her military and economic activities in the region. The US did her best to ensure that the Philippines were "Americanized." The Island was modernized and civilian administration was enhanced as the nation prepared for independence which had been delayed. Independence was granted in 4th July 1964. It was ironical the U.S who had invested so much in having an overseas colony retired from Philippines at the close of the Second World War.
Clearly the American Philippines war was a war between imperialism and nationalism. A war between a nation that desired to have a colony and that that desired to retain her independence. America had to take on Philippines because it was the easiest option for an overseas colony. Despite having acquired other colonies such as Hawaii American thirst for overseas colonies was not over and the country could do anything including going to war to get a colony. Indeed it went to war with Philippines and successfully managed to make her a colony. The colony would later become a strategic point for military and economic activities in Asia and Pacific region before gaining independence just after the Second World War and became recognized as a nation by America and other nations.
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