In the late 1800s, the U. S. became an imperialist power, competing to extend their influence throughout the world. The US had a few reasons for becoming an imperialist country. Their desire for economic growth, military expansion, and spreading their values and ideas compelled them to conquer other countries. But not all Americans believed that America should be imperialist. Those who disagreed with the pro-expansionist beliefs were afraid of conflict with other countries, the amount it would cost, and didn’t want to contradict the principles that the United States held.
The Philippines is just one example of U. S. annexation. In 1899, the U. S. defeated Spain in the Spanish-American war and acquired Spain’s colonies, which included the Philippines. The U. S. decided to annex the Philippines and sent 70,000 troops to put down a Philippine revolt. The Americans were very divided on the topic of whether or not the U. S. was justified in intervening in the Philippines. Although the U. S. made some positive contributions to Philippine society, their harsh treatment of the Filipinos contradicted its ideals.
Therefore, the intervention was not justified. The U. S. got involved in the war with Spain for a few reasons. First, Spain was using brutal control tactics against the Cuban people, giving them reason to intervene. The U. S. then sent a battle ship called the U. S. S. Maine to Cuba, but it exploded along the way and Spain was blamed without proof. To excite the U. S. citizens, journalists used a propaganda tactic called yellow journalism, where highly exaggerated stories would be written and were then run in newspapers.
After the United States defeated Spain, they acquired several colonies including the Philippines, and were faced with an important decision of whether or not they should annex the Philippines or grant them independence. The country was divided on this decision. Those who were in favor of annexing the Philippines because it had land full of economic potential, and the Filipinos were not utilizing the land to their greatest benefit. An article from the S. F. weekly states that the Filipinos “raise only enough food to live on; they don’t care to make money; and they occupy land which might be utilized to much better advantage by Americans.
” Some Americans favored the idea of annexation because they believed the U. S. was helping the Filipinos. When the U. S. troops arrived in the Philippines, they helped build schools, roads, and medical offices. (Starron) Yet the negative effects outweighed the positive when the U. S. decided to annex the Philippines. U. S. soldiers mistreated the Filipinos through torture. Starron states that “the misconduct that did occur, such as the water cure, was the result of small groups of men under junior or non-commissioned leadership looking for weapons or information.
” The water cure was a torture device instituted by soldiers on the Filipinos. The soldiers would force them to drink loads of dirty water until they were bloated, and then force it out of them by jamming their rifles into their stomachs. The U. S. also had no right to annex the Philippines the way they were. The tactics they were using were comparable to the tactics that Spain was using when the U. S. intervened, contradicting the morals and beliefs of the U. S.
American Imperialism Of The Philippines Essay
In 1900, Senator Albert Beveridge, a Republican from Indiana, gave a speech in response to “The Philippine Question”. Beveridge was asked by senators and members of the House of Representatives to give a speech on the Philippines. At this time, the United States was in discussion of what the future steps would be after the Spanish-American War, which resulted in a win and subsequent acquisition of the Philippines. Senator Beveridge responded to the idea that the United States should stay in the Philippines for its available resources for the United States, its impact it gives the United States in the Pacific Ocean, and the destiny the United States has in spreading democracy. Senator Albert Beveridge makes a strong argument of why the United States should stay in the Philippines; his arguments of commerce, world powers, and race are all strong for the United States, but there is a strong resistance from the Filipino people and their vocal leader Emilio Aguinaldo.
To begin, Beveridge discusses where the Philippines are in the world standing. He describes the islands as the last lands left in the oceans, and suggests that taking over the island through the Asian and Australian markets would create a United States influence in the Pacific. The only markets that the United States have not done business with are the Asian markets, so the expansion could prove to be financially beneficial. With the United States needing to become more involved in Asian commerce, the Philippines could eventually become an American resource with the importation and exportation. It is Beveridge’s idea that if the United States were to take action in the Philippines, it would cause a “win-win situation” for both countries.
During this time, the United States was in a period of massive economic growth. The economic growth resulted in increased revenue due to railroads, steel mills, and coalmines. Beveridge discussed the industries of farming and mining in the Philippines and its impact it could have in the United States. The farming goods in Philippines included rice, coffee, sugar, coconut, hemp, and tobacco all goods used in the United States. But with the American population exceeding 75 million people, the country needs were on the rise. With a rising population resulting in a need for more resources, the Philippines could be an answer to the problem. Would allow the United States to be more self-reliant and have less need on foreign goods. In addition to farming resources, there were many acres of forestry and mountains in the Philippines that could be used to provide wood and coal, which appealed to the capitalists found in Congress. The narrative of weeping the riches of the Philippines Beveridge reminds Congress this can only be achieved through occupation.
Although the tension between Europe, Russia, and Asia were not high during this time, small battles over territories continuously contributed to a much bigger problem of worldwide rising military numbers. Even...
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