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Prof. Dean C. Worcester

Prof. Dean C. Worcester image
Parent Issue
Day
17
Month
November
Year
1899
Copyright
Public Domain
OCR Text

Prof. Dean C. Worcester, of the nnïversity, spoke on the Philippine question in Chicago last evening. In answering those who 'criticised American posseessiou of the islands, he stated that members of Aguinaldo 's own cabinet testified before the comruission to the fact that even in bis proclamation of June 18 he freely admitted that 110 American had ever promised him independence for his people. He eontiimed with the statement that Consul Pratt was willing to make oath he had never made the promises to Aguinaldo he was said to have made. The only co-operation against the Spanish was that cach fought a common foe. ïhe Americans requifed no help to take Manila. It lay completely at the mercy of Dewey's gons. Scldiers were reqnired to occupy it, uot to take it. Prof. AVorcester said : 'I have no hesitation in sa ving that the United States did infinitcly more than Aguinaldo' army toward driviug out and destroying Spanish power in the Philippine Islands. If our claim to sovereignty was shadowy, what shall we say as to the claim of a tribe representing less than one-sixth of the population of the islands ; and exercisiug jurisdiction over but a j sm all part of the Philippine terri tory?" íisíw- As showing the bloody vork of the insurgents, Prof. Worcester said : "At the time I left Manila, the province of Batabgas was overrun with thieves and murderers. No I tempt was being made to enforce law and order. The pnblie schools were abandoiied. Forced contributions had been wrniig from the people at the bayonet point until many of thein were ruined. Unwilliug eontrilrutors Jiad bceii pmiished by having their hands hacked off, 'and even by being bnried alive. The individual honses in snch important towns as Taal were intrenched in order that the inhabitants might defend themselvcs against their neighbors. The military governor of the province, although a Tagalog and au insnrgent, had characterized the condition existing as 'complete anarchy' and had repeatedly sent in secret to Manila, asking for aid to restore order, and promisiug to surrender with his troops if he would only dispatch a small force to his aid" The speaker denounced as false statements that the Amerieans had no friends among the Filipinos, and declared we had many good, true friends " i among the leadiug Filipinos. He proceeded: "I liear it said if only a srnall fraction of Philippine popiilation is in anus against us, and if the great majority of the people are ready to accept American sovereignty, why is it fehat we are compeUed to send a great army to the islands ? I answer, first, beoause we are wagiug the most huaiane war in history. If it were sim ply a matter of killing, we should not : nteed so large au army. ïwo régi meiits of troops could go where they I oh ose in the island of Lu zon today j and kill to their hearts content withI OTit serious risk. It is because we are attempting to protect the peaceable inhabitauts from the depredatipiis of the lawless that we require so lai'ge a i forcé. "Finally, a word as to the way out. Is ie conoeivable that we should withdraw our troops, abandoniug our firends to certain vengeance of our ! enemies, and the people at large to j civil war and uttor anarchy ? There 1 can be but one answer to this quesi tion. Our troops must stay until arcned resistance has cea.sed and public oonfi dence has been fully restored. The í day will come, sooner or later, wIkmi native soldiers, under American otticers, or under officers of their own, will do a large share of the work that remains to be done. "In elosing, let me say that there does not live au anti-imperialist who has a more sincere regard for the people of the Philippine Islands orakeener interest in their present and future welfare than myself. I have great faith in them. I believe that under our gnidanee they will make rapid progress in civilization and will soon. be able to take an important share in the burden of their. country, but I know if the full weight of that bnrden were thx'own npon them today they would inevitably sink under it."