Friday, January 20, 2012


Graciano Lopez Jaena

1896 - Filipino orator, patriot, and propagandist Graciano Lopez y Jaena dies of tuberculosis in Barcelona, Spain several months before the outbreak of  the Philippine Revolution; Jaena and Jose M. Rizal and Marcelo H. del Pilar formed the great triumvirate of reformist Propaganda movement that  aimed to awaken Spain as to the needs of its colony, the Philippines, and to make for a closer and more equal association of the archipelago and  supposed motherland, Spain; Jaena's contributions to the Propaganda movement included his satire "Fray  Butod" (Big Bellied Friar), articles  advocating liberal politicies in a number of newspapers (including El  Liberal, Bandera Social de Madrid, La Publicidad, El Pueblo Soberano, and El Deluvio of Barcelona, España en Filipinas, Revista  Economica de  la   Camara de Comercio de España en Londres), and his early editorship of  the Madrid-based La Solidaridad, the propaganda movement's official organ, and his warmly received 1883 speech in Madrid wherein he declared his hope that all Spanish territories be accorded equal treatment, attention  and consideration under the law. 
1900 - Sorsogon falls to the enemy Bald Eagle nation forces in spite of the gallant resistance of Filipino freedom fighters under Col. Amado Airan nearly a year into the bloody Philippine-American War (1899-1914); the objective of the invasion by the imperialist United States forces in the Bicol region where Sorsogon is a part of is "to render a sufficient quantity of hemp available for the American market as soon as possible," prompting Gen. Otis to order Brig. Gen. William A. Kobbe to take over the Sorsogon and Albay hemp ports of Bulan, Tabaco, Donsol, and Legaspi and establish colonial civil government and customs service; the vile  Bald Eagle invaders would not have it easy, however, as the Filipino forces under Gen. Vito L. Belarmino and also under the controversial Jose Ignacio Paua, would immediately engage in a heroically defiant and protracted guerrilla warfare, prompting Kobbe to remark how the "skillfull" resistance of the natives had "exceeded in stubbornness and aggressiveness any fighting since the outbreak in February 1899." Paua (or Pawa/Intsik Pawa) was the Chinese -Filipino responsible for stabbing Katipunan Supremo Andres C. Bonifacio on  'dead-or-alive' orders of power-grabbing Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo some 2 1/2 years earlier during the Revolution against Spain. 

Photo art: Jesusa Bernardo

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