Thursday, August 13, 2009

Occupation day,2

According to the family grapevine, my maternal great grandfather, Leon Maria Guerrero, would wake up infuriated on every 13th day of August, a tragic day for him but "Occupation Day", a "fiesta oficial" for the American colonial government.

In the second volume of Capt. John R.M. Taylor's THE PHIIPPINE INSURRECTION AGAINST THE UNITED STATES, this American intelligence officer reported that on 10 August 1898, Gen. Pio del Pilar sent an ominous message to Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo, warning him that "...the Americans want to deceive us...we shall attack them and drive them out." Apparently, while Aguinaldo was organizing his forces in Cavite, Filipino troops in Manila, according to Taylor"...watched the arrival of American reinforcements with rising indignation for they saw that the capaital would not be theirs. They felt that they were about to be defrauded of the prize for which they had labored and fought. Many wanted to see their flag flying over the Walled City." Needless to say, Taylor also believed that all the Filipinos wanted to do was loot Intramuros.

On 12 August, Gen. Riego de Dios, whom Aguinaldo had installed as governor of Cavite, informed him that the Spaniards in Manila had reportedly surrendered to the Americans who were raring to take possession of Intramuros. That very evening, Aguinaldo received a terse telegraphed message from Gen. Anderson forbidding him and his "Filipino insurgents" from entering Manila. Sensing betrayal, Aguinaldo flew into a rage. Meanwhile his former allies had already taken possession of a bridge to prevent him and his troops from entering Manila.

On 13 August, Aguinaldo received yet another stern warning from the American general: "Your troops are not permitted to enter Manila without the permission of the American commander on this side of the Pasig River, as they would be under our fire."

Audaciously, the Filipinos passsed through Santa ana, according to Capt. Taylor"...and got into the city almost as soon as the Americans. They did not get in without opposition by the Americanas, who endeavored to eecute their orders to keep them out without resorting to actual force." On the same day, Aguinaldo received another telegram which read:"Serious trouble threatening between our forces. Try and prevent it. Your force should not force themseves in the city until we have received the full surrender [of the Spaniards].Then we will negotiate with you." To which Aguinaldo replied:"My troops are forced by yours, by means of threats of violence to retire from positions taken. It is necessary to avoid conflict, which I should lament, that you order your troops to avoid difficulties with mine as until now they [Filipino troops] have conducted themselves like brothers to take Manila."

Capt. John Taylor wrote: "It was fortunate for the Americans in front of Manila that Aguinaldo's councilors were not unified and that his soldiers were short of ammunition."#

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