American torture in the Philippines. III


Upon our return to Philadelphia, a few days later, a gentleman known
to us stepped into our office and placed in our hands a long letter
from another soldier in the Regular Army in the Philippines addressed
to relatives in this city. It had every evidence of being sincere and
genuine. This letter described events as they appeared to the writer,
and was wholly without any tone of exaggeration or sensationalism. It
described the "water-cure" torture just as did the letter quoted
above. We give the following extract:, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS, April 5,
1900. MY DEAR --: As this is the last day for some time that I will
have a chance to write, I thought this would be a good time to begin
one. We are still at it, and making preparations for the rainy season,
which is expected about the middle or latter part of June. Any of the
natives who have a gun can turn it in to us and get 830 Mexican
(Mexican money) for it, so a good many are bought in that way. We have
a company of Macabebe scouts here who go out with white troops, and if
they can not get any guns voluntarily they proceed to give the fellow
the water cure-i. e., they throw them on their backs, stick a gag in
their mouths to keep it open and proceed to fill them with water until
they can hold no more, then they get on them and by sudden pressure on
t stomach and chest force the water out again. I guess it must cause
excruciating agony, as they nearly always disclose where guns are
hidden. Of course there is no pay for guns got in that manner. It is
rather a harsh way for us to use them. I wonder how we would feel were
we used in such a manner? The soldiers who look on think it is a huge
joke. These Macabebes are a people who have always been held in
contempt and subjection by the Tagals. They are not very numerous and
not the equal of the latter in anything except ferocity. Had the
former known a year ago that they would take arms for us, I think they
would have exterminated them.

Title: The problem in the Philippines. Speech of Hon. Henry M. Teller,
of Colorado, in the Senate of the United States ... February 11, 12,
and 13, 1902.
Author: Teller, Henry Moore, 1830-1914.