American Imperialism and the Colonization of the Philippines

1555 words 7 pages
American Imperialism and the Colonization of the Philippines

The irony of the 1898 Spanish-American war was that Americans fought partly to aid Cubans in the fight for Cuban sovereignty, and the United States ended up colonizing some territories they won from Spain, like the Philippines. Despite America’s previous claims of only supporting independence and democracy, the United States became an imperialist power and colonized the Philippines (Introduction to the Spanish-American war and the Filipino insurgency in the assignment sheet). This led to a Filipino insurgency, led by discontent Filipinos, who fought American troops through guerrilla warfare (Conlin 545). Conlin states that many Americans died fighting against a “popular
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Beveridge claimed that other countries have already “moved nearer to China by securing bases on her borders” (Beveridge 14). If Americans did not colonize the Philippines, they would not have a base in Asia at the “door of all the East” (Beveridge 14). Beveridge also argued that the Pacific trade would be the “commerce of the future” (Beveridge 14). He claimed that it was important to keep the Philippines because “the power that rules the Pacific...is the power that rules the world” (Beveridge 14). That power would be with the United States if they kept the Philippines. In addition, a naval construction program strengthened the American navy during the 1880s (Conlin 538). Conlin claims that the naval ships needed coal to run, and if the United States wanted the capacity to travel to “trouble spots anywhere in the world, especially in the Pacific,” then it must establish ports and naval bases in different parts of the world that would serve as “coaling stations and good harbors at which to base ships” (Conlin 538). Because the Philippines are located in the Pacific, having a colony there would also support America’s naval power. There were many different arguments for the colonization of the Philippines. One was Anglo-Saxon superiority, another was Filipino inferiority and inability to self-govern, and yet another was for America’s best

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