McKinley, William - Discorso sull'invasione delle Filippine, 1899
W. McKinley - Speech At Dinner Of The Home Market Club,
Boston, February 16, 1899.
Mr. President, Members of the Home Market Club, Ladies and Gentlemen :
I have been deeply and profoundly moved by this manifestation of your good will and the
cordial welcome extended by the governor of your great commonwealth, as well as by the
chief executive officer of this the principal city of your State. I thank the governor of the
commonwealth of Massachusetts, I thank the mayor of the city of Boston, for their warm
and generous words of greeting.
My fellow-citizens, the years go quickly. It seems not so long, but it is, in fact, six years,
since it was my honor to be a guest of the Home Market Club. Much has happened in the
intervening time. Issues which were then engaging us have been settled or put aside for
larger and more absorbing ones. Domestic conditions have improved and are generally
We have made progress in industry and have realized the prosperity for which we have
been striving. We had four long years of adversity, which taught us some lessons that will
never be unlearned, and which will be valuable in guiding our future action. We have not
only been successful in our financial and business affairs, but in a war with a foreign power
which has added great glory to American arms and a new chapter to American history.
I do not know why, in the year 1899, this republic has unexpectedly had placed before it
mighty problems which it must face and meet. They have come and are here, and they
could not be kept away. Many who were impatient for the conflict a year ago, apparently
heedless of its larger results, are the first to cry out against the far-reaching consequences
of their own act. Those of us who dreaded war most, and whose every effort was directed
to prevent it, had fears of new and grave problems which might follow its inauguration.
The evolution of events, which no man could control, has brought these problems upon us.
Certain it is that they have not come through any fault on our own part, but as a high
obligation j and we meet them with clear conscience and unselfish purpose, and with good
heart resolve to undertake their solution.
War was declared in April, 1898, with practical unanimity by Congress, and, once upon us,
was sustained by like unanimity among the people. There had been many who tried to
avert it, as, on the other hand, there were many who would have precipitated it at an early
date. In its prosecution and conclusion the great majority of our countrymen of every
section believed they were fighting in a just cause, and at home or at sea or in the field
they had part in its glorious triumphs.
It was the war of an undivided nation. Every great act in its progress, from Manila to
Santiago, from Guam to Porto Rico, met universal and hearty commendation.
The protocol commanded the practically unanimous approval of the American people. It
was welcomed by every lover of peace beneath the flag.
The Philippines, like Cuba and Porto Rico, were in trusted to our hands by the war, and to
that great trust, under the providence of God and in the name of human progress and
civilization, we are committed. [Great applause.]
It is a trust we have not sought; it is a trust from which we will not flinch. The American
people will hold up the hands of their servants at home whom they commit its execution,
while Dewey and Otis and the brave men whom they command will have the support of
the country in upholding our flag where it now floats, the symbol and assurance of liberty
and justice. [Great applause.]
What nation was ever able to write an accurate program of the war upon which it was
entering, much less decree in advance the scope of its results? Congress can declare war,
but a higher Power decrees its bounds and fixes its relations and responsibilities. The
President can direct the movements of soldiers in the field and fleets upon the sea, but he
cannot foresee the close of such movements or prescribe their limits. He cannot anticipate
or avoid the consequences, but he must meet them. No accurate map of nations engaged
in war can be traced until the war is over, nor can the measure of responsibility be fixed till
the last gun is fired and the verdict embodied in the stipulations of peace.
We hear no complaint of the relations created by the war between this government and the
islands of Cuba and Porto Rico. There are some, however, who regard the Philippines as
in a different relation ; but whatever variety of views there may be on this phase of the
question, there is universal agreement that the Philippines shall not be turned back to
Spain. [Great applause.]
No true American consents to that. Even if unwilling to accept them ourselves, it would
have been weak evasion of duty to require Spain to transfer them to some other power or
powers, and thus shirk our own responsibility. Even if we had had, as we did not have, the
power to compel such a transfer, it could not have been made without the most serious
international complications. Such a course could not be althought of. And yet, had we
refused to accept the cession of them, we should have had no power over them, even for
their own good. We could not discharge the responsibilities upon us until these islands
became ours either by conquest or treaty. There was but one alternative, and that was
either Spain or the United States in the Philippines.
The other suggestions first, that they should be tossed into the arena of contention for the
strife of nations or, second, be left to the anarchy and chaos of no protectorate at all were
too shameful to be considered. The treaty gave them to the United States. Could we have
required less and done our duty ? [Cries of " No ! "] Could we, after freeing the Filipinos
from the domination of Spain, have left them without government and without power to
protect life or property or to perform the international obligations essential to an
independent state ? Could we have left them in a state of anarchy and justified ourselves
in our own consciences or before the tribunal of mankind? Could we have done that in the
sight of God or man ?
+1 anno fa
Dispensa al corso di "Gli Stati Uniti nel XX secolo" del Prof. Daniele Fiorentino. Trattasi del discorso del 25° presidente degli Stati Uniti William McKinley pronunciato nel 1899 all'Home Market Club di Boston, rigurdante l'invasione delle isole Filippine da parte dell'esercito statunitense all'interno della guerra ispano-americana, con la quale gli Stati Uniti inaugurarono la loro politica coloniale ed in cui emerge il concetto di "manifest destiny", destino manifesto.
I contenuti di questa pagina costituiscono rielaborazioni personali del Publisher Atreyu di informazioni apprese con la frequenza delle lezioni di Gli Stati Uniti nel XX secolo e studio autonomo di eventuali libri di riferimento in preparazione dell'esame finale o della tesi. Non devono intendersi come materiale ufficiale dell'università Roma Tre - Uniroma3 o del prof Fiorentino Daniele.
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