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The Balangiga, Samar Massacre

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The Balangiga, Samar Massacre
Prelude to attack
The attack
Commanding officers' courts-martial
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Introductory CGC's Notes:

I actually browsed the booklet based on a personal account by one of the soldiers involved in the campaign, from the Philippine Collection in the Special Collections of the Boston Public Library. Unfortunately, when I had a chance to buy my camera in 2006 to photocopy the entire booklet, the staff in the Library could not locate the booklet, even after repeated request.

The article below is a verbatim copy of an article in Wikipedia which corroborates the incident the routing defeat (and killing) of American soldiers in a previous skirmish, and the  major American Officers  involved in the  ensuing incident to avenge the death of the American soldiers. Just like the My Lai massacre during the Vietnam War in the mid 1960- early 1970s was known to the American Military but never surfaced until years later, and actually investigated in the US Congress.

At the time, many Americans viewed Filipinos as nothing but barbarians. Read the "Historical Introduction by Edward Gaylord Bourne of "The Philippine Islands: 1493-1898 Vol 1-55" by Emma Helen Blair and James A. Robertson, editors to have an appreciation of perception or attitude, even of many Americans experts and government officials at the time.  The final US Congress report of the "Balangiga affair" was not surprising.

However, even to this day, and perhaps more so because of the impact of the internet,  any topic  in history (or in any humanities topic for that matter) remains controversial and subject to bias by the paties involved.

The Wikipedia version of this incident was a copy  last modified on 21 August 2010 at 22:45.All links revert to Wikipedia articles and topics link, including the discussion specific for this topic. It is not uncommon for "Edit wars" to ensue, especially involving very controversial topics.

Read  more  about Wikipedia articles in the FAQs section of this website.


Balangiga massacre

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Balangiga massacre, as it is known in the Philippines, or the Balangiga affair, as it is known in the United States,[5] was an incident in 1901 during the Philippine-American War where more than forty American soldiers were killed in a surprise guerrilla attack in the town of Balangiga on Samar island. This incident was described as the United States Army's worst defeat since the Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876.[5][6][7] Filipinos regard the attack as one of their bravest acts in the war.[citation needed][dubious ]

The subsequent retaliation by American troops resulted in the killing of 2000–3000[8] Filipinos on Samar, the majority of whom were civilians. The heavy-handed reprisal earned a court-martial for Gen. Jacob H. Smith, who had ordered the killing of everyone ten years old and over. Reprimanded but not formally punished, Smith was forced into retirement from the service because of his conduct.[9]

The attack and the subsequent retaliation remains one of the longest-running and most controversial issues between the Philippines and the United States.[5] Conflicting records from both American and Filipino historians have confused the issue. Demands for the return of the bells of the church at Balangiga, taken by the Americans as war booty and collectively known as the Balangiga bells, remain an outstanding issue of contention related to the war. One church bell remains in the possession of the 9th Infantry Regiment at their base in Camp Red Cloud, South Korea, while two others are on a former base of the 11th Infantry Regiment at F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

According to some nationalist Filipino historians, the true "Balangiga massacre" was the subsequent American retaliation against the Samar population.[10]

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 06 October 2010 15:20 )