Storm sea; push ye mightily.
Isaac be; Ron Paul liberty!
Riding ye storm tide. Run 'em vermin out! We land by dawn. - Captain
Mark Twain flag hoisted by Historians against the war.
Mark Twain's flag for the American colony in the Philippines... April 21, 2008
Mark Twain was one of the most prominent opponents of the Philippine-American War and an outspoken anti-imperialist...
After the 1898 war with Spain, the U.S. acquired various territories directly, including Cuba and Puerto Rico. Spain was unwilling to cede the Philippines, however, which had not been occupied by U.S. forces until after the armistice. Even then, U.S. forces only occupied Manila and its environs. Spain gave in to the offer of $20 million, however, and the islands became an American colony along with the Caribbean areas as a result of the [Spanish-American] Treaty of Paris. Cuba was denied independence until 1946. Unwilling to be subjugated by new masters, the Philippines declared independence. The Philippine-American War which followed lasted from 1899 to July 1902, but sporadic guerrilla warfare and rebellions for several more years, a phase called the "Philippine Insurrection." 4,000 American servicemen and at least five times as many Filipinos died in that conflict – far, far more than the several hundred Americans who died in the Spanish-American War. This war has almost totally disappeared from American historical memory, but reminders can still be seen, for example on the Marine Corps Memorial in Washington, D.C. ...
In June of 1898 Mark Twain wrote in a letter: "I have never enjoyed a war – even in written history – as I am enjoying this one…It is a worthy thing to fight for one's freedom; it is another sight finer to fight for another man's. And I think this is the first time it has been done."
But his support for the war turned to opposition after reading the Treaty of Paris which ended the U.S. war with Spain. U.S. control of new colonies, the payment of $20 million, and the treaty's specific protection for Spanish landholders in Cuba were all factors which turned him against U.S. policy. He returned to the U.S. in October, 1900. Embarking in Europe, he told a reporter, using words much like those of anti-war activists today, that the war was, "a mess, a quagmire from which each fresh step renders the difficulty of extraction immensely greater."
His opinion got a lot of press in the context of the 1900 presidential campaign which revolved to some degree around the issue of imperialism. He advocated putting a miniature U.S. constitution in the Pacific, but "we have gone there to conquer, not to redeem." "And so I am an anti-imperialist." He soon joined the Anti-Imperialist League, which had been formed in 1898.... becoming the organization's vice president in 1901.
His 1901 essay To the Person Sitting in Darkness was not an anti-American polemic, but a broad critique of western colonial imperialism. In it, he satirizes the colonial powers' claims to be bringing "civilization" to the "dark" corners of the globe....
Mark Twain's anti-imperialist writings, including To the Person Sitting in Darkness, have been collected in Zwick, Jim (Ed.): Mark Twain's Weapons of Satire. Anti-Imperialist Writings On the Philippine-American War. Syracuse University Press: Syracuse, 1992. The information for the above commentary is from Zwick's introduction and Udo Sautter: Geschichte der Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika.
Disclaimer: Mark Twain (1835-1910-To be continued) is unlicensed. His river pilot's license went delinquent in 1862. Caution advised. Daily Paul ☑
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