Saturday, May 19, 2012

19 MAY

1898 - Some 10 months before imperialist United States forces formally invade the Philippines, Gen. Emilio F. Aguinaldo, leader of the Philippine revolutionary forces fighting to overthrow Spanish colonial rule, ends his exile following American invitation for him to rally Filipinos against Spain; arriving at Cavite province aboard the revenue cutter USRC McCulloch, Aguinaldo will soon confer with Admiral George Dewey to forge an alliance against Spain, later saying that the Bald Eagle admiral has categorically stated that the United States will recognize Philippine Independence supposedly because "America is exceedingly well off as regards territory, revenue, and resources and therefore needs no colonies;" earlier in Hong Kong on April 22--three days before the U.S. declared war on Spain--the American consul general to Singapore, E. Spencer Pratt, conferred with Aguinaldo to discuss strategy against Spain, with Pratt promising Philippine independence under their protection; U.S. consul Rounsenville Wildman also told Aguinaldo that Dewey wanted the latter to return from exile and resume the fight for independence; earlier, a few months after eliminating Andres Bonifacio y de Castro, the former head of the revolutionary forces, Aguinaldo forged a truce with the Spaniards in the December 1897 Pact of Biak-na-Bato.

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