Was there ever a Philippine Insurrection?

Luis Bienvenido Foronda
2 min readFeb 16, 2021

This article was published in OnlyFacts on 18 December 2020

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The Philippine-American War caused more civilian casualties than any war that the United States engaged with up to date.

Illustration by Hisashi Hanasaki (2020).

For some time it was ostensibly called the Philippine Insurrection, an ideological ploy for the US to distort the image of revolutionary Filipinos fighting for their independence as seditious, brigands, and criminals.

In 1901, Samarnon militia retook Catubig, Samar was under General Vicente Lukban before he was killed for being part of the resistance.

Consequently, the Pulahanes of Cebu and Babaylanes of Negros, Filipino millenarian revolutionaries, were branded as ‘bands of brigands’ by the US government in the Philippines.

It was in Cebu and elsewhere in the country that the Americans first used the hamleting strategy (surrounding enemy territory until it’s overwhelmed) in Southeast Asia.


Cullinane, M. (2009). Bringing in the brigands: the politics of pacification in the colonial Philippines, 1902–1907. Philippine Studies 57(1). jstor.org/stable/42633988.

Ileto, R. (2005). Philippine wars and the politics of memory. East Asia Cultures Critique 13(1), 216–234.

Mojares, R.B. (1976). The Pulahanes of Cebu: case study in human geography. Philippine Quarterly of Culture and Society 4(4). jstor.org/stable/42633988.