« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
THE CASE OF THE PHILIPPINES.
ONCE more the unexpected has happened, and the Americans have found that their "plundering raid," as the Germans, virtuous for others if not overscrupulous for themselves, have described the late war of liberation, has brought them serious trouble, just where none might have been considered as antecedently probable. They have vanquished Spain easily. Porto Rico has welcomed them. Cuba promises to settle down quietly as their obedient pupil, which is perhaps a proof that its previous unrest was at least partly their work. But in the remote Philippines they have a war on hand, and it is one which they will hardly end either quickly or without serious sacrifices. Moreover, it has brought them into relations with other Powers such as no American would have thought desirable—or if he did he would have shrunk from stating his opinion-five years ago. It is a very strange war, carried on in a little known country, in conditions which are obscure, and for an end which it is very difficult to foresee. As usually happens in this writing age SO soon as anything is stirring, books begin to accumulate, be the scene of the events ever so remote. There has always been an intelligent witness everywhere, and he speaks when he thinks the world will listen. We may mention four, three English and one Spanish, and from them it is possible to form, if not
an estimate of what will happen, at least some idea as to what has taken place and why. They are of different degrees of value. Major Younghusband's, 'The Philippines and Round About,' is, to be exact, the swift work of a globe-trotter, an open-eyed and alert globe-trotter, but yet of one who, by the nature of things, pays a passing visit, looks at the outside, and goes away. Mr Forman's 'Philippine Islands' was already a "standard authority"; but his second edition has been enriched by details of the Tagalo Rebellion, which is the real cause of the loss of the islands by Spain. Mr Worcester's very readable volume is a record of the prolonged journeys of a naturalist, who has an eye for men as well as beasts, who knows the languages, and has that interest in, and understanding of, political matters which is rarely quite wanting in any American. Yet for the immediate purpose the most interesting of the four is the account of 'The Campaign in the Philippines in 1897,' by the Spanish Colonel Don Federico de Monteverde, who served through it on the staff of General Lachambre, second in command to General Polavieja, and leader of the division on which the bulk of the work fell.
The style of Don F. Monteverde is not ours. He is sadly addicted to what he calls brief reflections, which are in fact
examples of the Castilian vice soldier who has studied his proof twaddle. He rises to lyric fession, who knows Moltke and heights of praise when speak- Frederick, can quote the maxims ing of his commander - in- of great captains, and look critchief General Polavieja, and his ically into the causes of success immediate superior General La- and defeat.” Apart from this chambre. Perhaps these pas- scientific soldiering, he gives a sages do something to explain view of the Spanish side of the the publication of this large, struggle during one period, a well-printed, and copiously illus- careful account of the Filipino trated volume. Polavieja is now organisation and method of fighta conspicuous political leader in ing, and of the country. From Spain, and Lachambre is his that, and in the absence of good supporter. The Marquesa de reports from Manila, we Polavieja is understood to be form a picture of what kind of wealthy, and has therefore the war it is the Americans have means of letting the world know
Mr Forman and Mr how brilliantly her husband vin- Worcester help to supply the dicated Spanish authority in background, or general condi1897. The deduction which the tions. Of these Colonel Montereader is at liberty to draw is too verde says just enough to show obvious to need naming. Again, that he would be an untrustColonel Monteverde writes of worthy witness. his enemy, the Filipino rebels, No words need be wasted in with a fury of hate which over- proving that the corrupt adminflows in abusive epithets. It istration of Spanish officials rejoices him to tell how the keen had much to do with the rebayonet of the Spanish soldiers bellion. The administration of smote down the vile faces,” Spain is corrupt everywhere, alevosas caras, and the worth- at home and abroad. Mr Forless bodies, ruines cuerpos, of man tells how one governor, the rebels. In common justice, who has since gained a reputawe must remember that the tion for cruelty in another colFilipinos were guilty of excesses ony (he might as well have towards Spanish women, and named General Weyler at once), children, and priests, very similar pilfered so largely that he at to those which threw our coun- last found it hard to transmit trymen in India into paroxysms his money home in secret. So of rage in 1857. Mr Forman, he sent an officer to Hong who is not the enemy of the Kong with 35,000 dollars of natives, tells one abominable his booty, to buy a draft on story of outrage which goes Europe. The agent disapfar to explain the savage anger peared with the money. If of the Spaniards. Still, al- the accidents of life bring the lowance must be made
be made for two men together, the meeting the Colonel's partisanship and might be curious. partialities. When, however, or may not, be exactly true, it is made, much remains. but it is probable, and it gives Colonel Monteverde is plainly a the whole farce - tragedy of
Spain's colonial failure in a are free savages now as they nutshell. But their collapse were in the sixteenth centuryin the Philippines is not only the Negritos, who are a remshameful to the civil and mili- nant of the aborigines, a small tary officers of Spain. It is negroid and withering race, inunspeakably discreditable to capable of civilisation. The their clergy, and through them Igarrotes and other tribes, even to the Church of Rome. One in Luzon, are practically free in fact dominates the whole his- the mountain and bush. In tory of the Spaniards in the the most southerly islands, the Philippines. It is that they mixed Malay race, called by the made good their footing by Spaniards Moors, who are corthe help of the preaching friars, rupt Mohammedans, have never and have held it by their exer
been tamed. The real possestions. The early Spanish con- sions of the ruling Power have querors, Legazpi and others, always been in the island of were men of the stamp of the Luzon in the tobacco-growing Pizarros and Almagro, daring valleys of the country to the adventurers in search of a quick north of Manila, and the rich fortune to be gained by the land of the provinces of Cavite, sword. ,
To find an Inca, and Laguna, and Bulacan to the to plunder him, was their ideal. south. Malay piracy was ramThey were hardly landed in the pant among all the islands till Philippines before one of them it was stopped, less by the exwas petitioning for the king's ertions of the Spaniards than leave to set out for the conquest
invention of steam. of China, which he would, no "James Watt killed piracy." doubt, have been prepared to But such as the Spanish doattempt with 150 men and 20 minion has been it has been the harquebusses. There never was work of the friar rather than any real settlement, and if of the soldier. When in the Spanish rule was accepted, the early seventeenth century the friars are chiefly entitled to the Council of Castile would have credit. We must not exagger- resigned the islands to the ate the extent of their do- Dutch, it was the Jesuits who minion, nor the
with caused the idea to be given up, which it has been held. Much
Much and it was they who provided even of the great northern for the defence of Manila. island of Luzon, on which Man- Again, when we took the town ila stands, has never been
at the end of the Seven Years' erly brought under control. War, the friars supported one
. The lesser islands to the south Simon Anda, a Spaniard, who have been touched later, even with a native following played less effectually and sometimes against us the game which not at all. Rebellions have Aguinaldo is now carrying on been common, and occasionally against the Americans. successful in securing local in- As the friars had to win in dependence. Some of the very
Some of the very the first place by persuasion, mixed races of the archipelago their victory may be allowed
to be to their honour. Of the is a confession of failure. It early missionaries, many were is no palliation to insist, as no doubt among the martyrs our Spanish authority, Colonel whose blood is the seed of the Monteverde, does, on the brutal Church. But the time of en- character of the Tagalos. .
If thusiasm passed away, leaving they deserve his censure, they behind it a number of Orders are at any rate a standing which have come to regard the proof of the incapacity of their Philippines as their property. teachers. When we ask why They have secured the right the friars, Dominican, Augusto hold all the parish priest- tinian, and Recollects, have ships, and their effectual power become objects of hatred, the became so great that no Span- answer given by English and ish Governor could afford to American witnesses is, firstly, defy them. A single fact will because the individuals are imsuffice to judge the use the moral; and, secondly, because Orders have made of their the Order is greedy. Mr Worpower.
When the first sign cester quotes an example of a of trouble among the Tagalo Spanish soldier who became a population in 1872 came, it friar simply because he wished took the form of a conspiracy, to lead an idle sensual life in not against the Spanish Gov- a climate which suited him. ernment, nor even against the Mr Forman speaks of many Church, but against the friars. uncleanly livers
livers among the The Tagalos are the bulk of regulars to his knowledge. the settled inhabitants of Lu- But this laxity of life, even if zon, and are much mixed with we believe that the friars used the Chinese. The agitators their power to indulge their who laid the so-called con- passions, might not have spiracy of Cavite in that year aroused hatred in a people meant to ask that the parish whose own habits are sufficures should be held by secu- ciently lax. It is rather the lar priests, whether native or restless greed of the Order, Spanish, but not by the re- which had its headquarters in gulars. There are native friars, Spain, which has no conscience, but they are wholly subject to which looks upon the steady the European friars, who em- pursuit of its corporate profit ploy them solely as curates, as a virtue, which never forand have no scruple, if Mr gets, or forgives, or rests till Forman is correctly informed, it has secured its purpose by in visiting them with corporal force or by intrigue, which has punishment. Now, these friars ended by becoming intolerable. have had the whole education Mr Forman tells us that when of the people and the forma- the Spanish Government protion of its character in their posed a few years ago to introhands for centuries, and the duce its own excellent system end is that they have got of land registration into the themselves hated with an ex- Philippines, the friars offered treme hatred. In itself that an obstinate and successful resistance, not because they in the last century, but since its feared to lose what they held, reconstruction it has been albut because they thought that lowed to reopen its schools. a settlement of titles would Mr Worcester speaks of the put a stop to their power of Jesuits as the most educated expansion at the expense of men he met in the Philippines. lay owners. As it was, no Perhaps because they do not man who opposed them could own land they have escaped be sure that he would not be sharing the unpopularity of robbed by the chicanery of the other Orders. The Spanish Govjudges, who were bribed or ernment has encouraged, or overawed by the friars. In even compelled, its colonists to short, the Orders were hated send their sons te the university in the Philippines for much at Madrid, in the hope that those reasons which brought they would be trained into sound about the revolt of Protestant sentiments. As a matter of Europe in the sixteenth century fact, the result was to bring
or for that matter, the vio- them into contact with modern lent attack made
Filiin Catholic Spain itself little pinos who came to Madrid in more than half a century ago. search of a diploma as doctor or Where it has the power, the lawyer not infrequently wanChurch of Rome never fails dered on to Paris and Brussels. to show that it has learnt Colonel Monteverde
says, and nothing and forgotten nothing. no doubt with truth, that they
If such power as this was to took their models everywhere last, it ought to have been care- from the men who “were disfully excluded from all outside contented with the government influence. This was impossible, under which they lived.” We partly because of the action of can believe him, for we know the Spanish Government itself. the educated baboo.
Of course Revolutions at home had some these civilised Filipinos came effect even on this remote colony. back with their heads full of The power of thereligious Orders Liberalism, and of vague aspirhad been limited in theory. If it ations after “rights” which was little reduced in practice, were perfectlyincompatible with the reason is to be found in the “the government under which constant intrigues of the chiefs they lived.” An example of of the Orders at Madrid. Yet it this class was the José Rizal, a was being steadily undermined. pupil of the Jesuits, an M.D. of Bad as the administration was, Madrid, a student at Paris and it did not prevent native Fili- Brussels, and also an oculist of pinos from acquiring wealth by some reputation, who was finally trade. They sought to secure shot by the Spaniards. Just education for their sons, and when the ground had been well found it in the Jesuit school at prepared in this fashion, came Manila. The Society has never the Spanish revolution of 1868. recovered the vast estates it The amazingly feather-headed held before it was suppressed persons whom it brought to the