Cabansand Video analysis
Cabansand video analysis
Imperialismis a practice, policy or advocacy by a powerful country effected withthe sole aim of extending or imposing influence, power or authorityeither via direct territorial annexation or through indirect controlby economic manipulation or political sabotage.
Historiansprovide that colonialism was the first imperialist process of the19thCentury as strong European countries sought to divide the world amongthem (Miller, 1999). Colonialism contributed greatly to therealization of political and economic situations, which lasted up tothe end of the Second World War (Trask, 2011). The expansion byEuropean countries was slow though it led to the conquest of much ofNorth and South America. Imperialism on the other hand was realizedat a very rapid pace as it involved a global expansion processthrough the application of political and military conquest appliedlargely by the US.
TheSpanish American war was sparked by the outrage over Spanish colonialcruelty in Cuba. The Monroe Doctrine allowed the US to considerinterferences by European powers in the Western Hemisphere as athreat to its sovereignty (Miller, 1999). However, this war wasessentially entered to as the US tried to compete with the StrongEuropean countries over the world’s weaker territories. In fact,Ambrose (in the video) asserts, “There was a lot of justification,rationalization for American to get into the war,” (Act 1, Min 4)
TheSpanish American War was brief, lasted for only four months, and wasseen as a necessary conflict by American expansionists. The Americanpeople were coerced into supporting the war under the grounds that itwas a war to free the oppressed Cuban people from the savagery ofSpanish colonialism (Miller, 1999). The introductory part of the filmprovides, “The American always felt that Cubans wanted to be partof American,” (Act 1, min 1). The aim of this war was to diminishthe imperial capabilities of Spain and more so enhancing theimperialist objectives of the United States. United States hadeconomic interests in Cuba that were more significant than thoseaccruing to Spain were.
Soonafter Spain was defeated and Cuba freed, the US entered into a newphase of the Spanish American War, this time in the Philippines,which was also under Spanish colonial rule. After victory over Spainin1898, the Treaty of Paris enabled the US to exercise sovereigntyover three territories, Puerto Rico, Guam and the Philippines (Trask,2011) (Pedro, 2013).
Americanizationwas an imperial policy adopted by the US to ensure that there was noincidence of an influx of immigrants from Guam the Philippines andPuerto Rico. The Anglo-Saxon Americans viewed people from the tropicsas being inferior and more so savages and were seen as an unwantedsocial burden (Miller, 1999) (Pedro, 2013). In annexing Philippines,America sought to have their own form of administration that wouldinstill American ideals into the people in the Philippines. The mainidea as to why America needed the Philippines was so as the expansiveislands could serve as a springboard to its expansion into the Asiancontinent and more so into mainland China (Trask, 2011). ThePhilippine Islands were viewed as an important coaling point for theUS Navy, vital for American expansion into Asia. To others, it wasfelt that the US had a duty to spread Christianity and education tothe primitive parts of their empire such as was the case in thePhilippines.
Somehistorians provide that the construction of the Suez Canal in 1869precipitated the calls for revolt against Spanish rule in thePhilippines (Pedro, 2013). The Suez Canal constructors sourced laborfrom Asia and as such, many Philippine natives were able to getexposure on the notions of freedom. The first such revolt occurredin the province of Cavite and grew into a fully-fledged revolutionagainst Spanish colonialism. Spain had ruled over the Philippinessince the 16thCentury and under Emilio Aguinaldo sought to be an independent nation([email protected] 1999).
TheSpanish American War also led to the collapse of Spanish rule in thePhilippines as the revolutionaries fought alongside the Americans. By 12 June 1898, Spanish rule had collapsed and Philippinerevolutionaries declared their independence on that same day.
However,independence to the Philippines was not an American objective andthey therefore rejected the new government leading to a protractedwar with the revolutionaries which later ended in 1902 (Pedro, 2013).Spain also failed to recognize the newly formed republic of thePhilippines. Under the Treaty of Paris, the Islands of thePhilippines were sold to the US by Spain and thus the US annexed theislands as part of the US territory. The Philippines then entered into a long and brutal war outraged by the American betrayal and thequest for their independence.
TheAmericans finally have to rule over the Philippines with the captureof the pro-independence fighters’ leader Aguinaldo in 1901 (Trask,2011). Aguinaldo was coerced in to swearing allegiance to the US andin 1902, the war ended after three years after the US had capturedmost of the Islands.
Amongthe people of the Philippines 1898 is their centennial year ofindependence as this was the years the forces of Aguinaldo conqueredthe Spaniards with the help of the Americans. This has always been asource of contention among people of the Philippines due to theinterference that was realized because of American imperialisticideals (Delmendo, 1998). To some, the centennial year is 1896 whenthe country realized a united front from its diverse islands againstthe Spaniards.
[email protected](1999). August1896: Revolt in the Philippines.Retrieved on June 16, 2014 fromhttp://www.pbs.org/crucible/frames/_timeline.html
Delmendo,S. (1998). The Star Entangled Banner: Commemorating 100 Years ofPhilippine (In)dependence and Philippine-American Relations. Journalof Asian American Studies1.3 (1998) 211-244.
Miller,D. A. (1999). Crucible of Empire: TheSpanish-American War.Retrieved on June 16, 2014 fromhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8g8NpQsmxj4
Pedro,C. (2013). Subjects and Immigrants During the Progressive Era.Discourse23. 3(Fall 2001): 24-51,131.
Reyes,A. C. (n.d). CentennialYear Is On!Retrieved on June 16, 2014 fromhttp://www.tribo.org/history/centennial.html
Trask,D. (2011). TheSpanish-American War. Retrievedon June 16, 2014 from http://www.loc.gov/rr/hispanic/1898/trask.html