Talk:Philippine–American War

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Reference cleanup[edit]

The references in this article are in need of some attention. If there are no objections, I would like to begin by converting the inline citations to list-defined parameters, for ease of editing in the future. Respectfully, DiverDave (talk) 23:59, 6 December 2016 (UTC)

Face of the New Peoples Army of the Philippines, Volume Two[edit]

In the course of recent extensive editing of this article, I have come across this book:

Welman, Frans (2012). Face of the New Peoples Army of the Philippines. Volume Two. Bangkok: www.booksmango.com (self-published). ISBN 978-616222163-7.

Much of the text and images found in pages 116 through 131 of Welman's book are nearly identical to that found in this Wikipedia article. A quick look at the history of this Wikipedia article will reveal that the text and images were present in this article as far back as 01 NOV 2010—years before Welman's book was published. The main reason I am pointing out this awkward situation is so that future editors will not inadvertently use Welman's book as a source for this Wikipedia article. In fact, this example illustrates quite well why self-published sources are not, as a rule, considered to be reliable sources for Wikipedia articles. DiverDave (talk) 22:24, 10 December 2016 (UTC)

Yes, this observation is correct. It is clear that the book's "author" has just lifted text almost unchanged from Wikipedia. I was looking at the numerous citation required tags added to the American atrocities section, being worried, given the text that has been tagged, that they might have been placed there just for some I don't like it disruption. But they do seem to be entirely justified. For example, I could find no usable sources for the Gen. Bell's "protect friendly natives from the insurgents, assure them an adequate food supply" quote. All of them are just Wikipedia clones, some easy to spot, some less easy, like the Frans Welman book. If this was a real quote, my feeling is that it should have been possible for me to find an online source. Eventually I did find a source, finding that the quote is not actually by Bell. There appear to be a number of dubious sources used in this article, content dealing with atrocities requires and demands proper sourcing. Tiptoethrutheminefield (talk) 21:39, 13 August 2017 (UTC)
This is yet another Wikipedia clone [1] being used in the article as a reference for article content. I have deleted it, and given the content a real source. A good test for these fake sources may be to look in them for the incorrect assertion that Gen Bell said the "protect friendly natives from the insurgents..." quote. Tiptoethrutheminefield (talk) 21:48, 13 August 2017 (UTC)

Signal Corps' Role in the Philippines[edit]

I have just removed the ==Signal Corps' Role in the Philippines== section. This section was added en bloc by an IP user, and has little relevance to this article. The text of that section belongs in, and will be added to, the Signal Corps (United States Army) article. On the other hand, several important technological advances and other phenomena made their first appearance or were in their infancy during this conflict, and I believe it would be useful to the reader to describe these, perhaps in a stand-alone section. These include, for example, the first use of the telephone on the battlefield. Also, early examples of the use of heliography, wireless telegraphy, concentration camps, and combat photography on the battlefield. DiverDave (talk) 13:32, 24 December 2016 (UTC)

Copyvio concern re Constantino 1975[edit]

The cites to this work in the article lack pagenos. I just started work on that, and noticed that the link in the relevant cite in the article goes to a full PDF version of the work. I have a hardcopy of Constantino, Renato (1975). The Philippines: A Past Revisited. Renato Constantino. ISBN 978-971-8958-00-1.  and, though I do see some small differences from the PDF, it is identical in a number of places where I did check. There is a copyright notice in my hardcopy which reads:

COPYRIGHT 1975
Manila, Philippines

by

RENATO CONSTANTINO
38 Panay Avenue, Quezon City

All Rights Reserved

ISBN 971-895800-2

Twentieth Printing, July, 2005

I am concerned about a possible copyvio here. Also, I would like to add pagenos missing in the cites to this work and I have a difficulty there in that the pagenos in the PDF do not line up 100.00% with the pagenos in my hardcopy book cited above. From a quick look at the content, the PDF appears to be a later version of the work than my hardcopy version (example: the final two items under Z in the index of my hardcopy are Zabala, Alcalde 112 and Zamora, Jacinto 147, vs. six Z items in the PDF index including one of the two that's in mine but giving a slightly different pageno). I suspect that the PDF is a copyvio item and, in light of WP:COPYVIO, I will probably replace the cite in the article with the cite given above within the next few days, removing the link to the PDF.

Discussion? Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 06:48, 25 December 2016 (UTC)

I have been working feverishly on the cited sources, and I am aware of the lack of page numbers in the Constantino source. I will go ahead and add the page numbers for each inline citation, using the shortened footnote (sfn) format, based on the pdf version, unless there are objections. DiverDave (talk) 04:17, 26 December 2016 (UTC)
I believe I have corrected this situation. All of the inline citations from this source now have associated page numbers. DiverDave (talk) 05:00, 26 December 2016 (UTC)
The copyvio concern remains; see WP:COPYVIO and WP:COPYVIOEL. I have placed a {{copyvio link}} tag in the article; that ought to attract an editor more knowledgeable about copyvios than I to take a look at this. Thanks for doing the pageno work. I haven't looked, but I expect that most of the PDF pagenos will differ a bit from the pagenos in the hardcopy I mentioned above. If need be, I can adjust the full cite to cite the hardcopy and adjust the pagenos to point to the appropriate pages there. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 05:37, 26 December 2016 (UTC)


I definitely appreciate your concerns about possible copyright violations in this article. With respect to citations from Filipino historian Renato Constantino's 1975 book: this book was published by Socialist Stories publications. Incredibly, the webpage for Socialist Stories publications includes the following manifesto:

"We believe that knowledge is the right of everyone and not simply a means to increase the profits of the greedy capitalist, and therefore we believe in spreading the literature of revolution on the widest possible scale. We do not respect copyright laws nor any other reactionary law which is imposed on us by the capitalists of this world, and we will break any law to aide the spread of progressive literature and to bring the world socialist revolution closer!"

The above statement should serve to allay one's fears somewhat about copyvio. But more than that, it makes me really wonder whether any book published by this company can be considered NPOV. Constantino's political views are clearly biased (and of course colored by his own personal experience), but then who among us has no bias whatsoever? Admittedly, many of citations in this article are from primary sources written by officials of the United States government, and the neutrality of such sources could easily be called into question. I do not particularly like the Constantino source, but we can certainly keep it if other editors feel strongly about it. DiverDave (talk) 15:35, 26 December 2016 (UTC)

Re copyvio concerns, the statement you quote above, rather than allaying my concerns re copyvio concerns, has solidified those concerns. Here I have removed the full cite linking to the copyright-violative PDF and replaced it with a cite of the hardcopy work I mentioned above. That has rendered most or all of the pagenos in the {{sfn}}s in the article incorrect, and I will work to correct those now-incorrect pagenos.
Re bias in Renato_Constantino's viewpoint and bias in views expressed in other sources, he/they is/are allowed to have and to express biased viewpoints. WP editors are not allowed to consider perceived bias in those viewpoints as a factor in deciding whether or not to include info about points he/they might make into WP articles and deciding whether or not to cite those sources in support of those points. The same holds true for citing views expressed by other books published by that copyright-flouting publisher, though linking to copyright-violative material from a WP article is not allowed. See WP:DUE.
Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 01:04, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

Recent changes to the article[edit]

Though I was aware that DiverDave has been editing this article over the past week or so I haven't been following those edits change by change. This diff shows the changes made by those edits which, taken overrall, improved the article IMO. Looking at that diff, I do have a few thoughts.

  • I see that all the cites of the (Constanting 1975) source discussed in the section above have been removed except for the one I added back in as explained in that discussion above. Since that is now the only cite of that source, it might make sense to cite it as an inline page-numbered cite rather than the way I re-added it, as an sfn.
  • I see that the edits removed the Nomenclature section. I think that the info in that section was useful.
I looked at all of the Military history featured articles on various wars as a guideline in restructuring this article. I did not see a Nomenclature section anywhere, and that was my rationale for removing it in this case. I brought the relevant text and citations into the lede section with this edit.DiverDave (talk) 01:22, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
  • The addition of the info that Aguinaldo dissolved the Malolos Congress and reinstituted dictatorial rule on June 8, 1899 surprised me. The newspaper source cited to support that does say that a dispatch from Manila reported that, but I don't remember having seen an assertion to that effect anywhere else. That added info will have further impact in this article and in other articles (for example, in all of the places where it is indicated that the Malolos Republic came to an end with the end of the Philippine-American War). I note in passing here that June 8 was three days after the June 5 assassination of Antonio Luna.
I agree. Please see below for more detail.DiverDave (talk) 01:26, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Much of the content of the new Political atmosphere relates to events prior to the onset of hostilities, and it all is background information. How about moving that ahead of the War section with all the details -- either as a major section or as a subsection under Background?
Seems like a good idea to me.DiverDave (talk) 01:34, 31 December 2016 (UTC)

That is what comes immediately to mind. I may have further thoughts later. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 08:09, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

Assertion that Aguinaldo dissolved the Malolos Congress and reinstituted dictatorial rule on June 8, 1899[edit]

I have tagged this assertion as {{dubious}}. It is supported by a link to this June 9, 1899 newspaper article which says that the information to that effect came from a "special dispatch from Manila". I note that item 90 in the list at Guevara, Sulpico, ed. (2005). "LIST OF OTHER LAWS AND DECREES". The laws of the first Philippine Republic (the laws of Malolos) 1898-1899. Ann Arbor, Michigan: University of Michigan Library (published 1972). p. 181. . (English translation by Sulpicio Guevara) says that the Malolos Republic enacted a law on June 30, 1899 providing that appointive representatives to the Congress who failed to attend ten consecutive sessions would be removed. I take that as an indication that the Malolos Republic was still operating and the Malolos Congress was still undissolved as of that date. I can probably find other reliable sources giving similar indications. I am guessing that the dispatch from Manila was in error, was misinterpreted, or was overtaken by later events which rendered it inoperative. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 04:20, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

Thank you for picking up this, and I apologize for introducing what appears to be an erroneous primary source. With the benefit of hindsight, we can see that the dispatch from Manila was not entirely correct. After Malolos fell into American hands on March 31, 1899, the seat of the Philippine Revolutionary Congress (PRC) was moved to Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, where it reconvened on May 9. The PRC reconvened again on 14 July 1899 in San Sebastian Cathedral in Tarlac, Tarlac. The PRC finally moved to Bayambang, Pangasinan, which was taken by the Americans on November 13, 1899. The PRC does therefore appear to have existed until at least at November 1899. I have not been able to find any reliable secondary source that supports the assertion cited in the newspaper article of June 9, 1899, and therefore it should probably be removed. On a related note, I feel that the term "Philippine Revolutionary Congress" is preferable to the term "Malolos Congress", "Cabanatuan Congress", "Tarlac Congress", etc. The location changed, but the entity was more or less the same. Just my opinion.DiverDave (talk) 01:06, 31 December 2016 (UTC)

Casualty figures; Bob Couttie[edit]

This edit caught my eye, the edit inserted the word as into an assertion, changing it to read, "However, it is not known where Remondo derived his figure for 1895, as the official Spanish population estimate was less than 6 million." (emphasis mine). The assertion is supported by a cite of Bob Couttie, Genocide – The Numbers Don't Add Up, which was tagged {{dead link}}.

  • First of all, the link is not dead. I've removed the dead link tag.
  • Second, as I read the assertion, the edit would change it to assert that the reason that it is not known where Remondo derived his figure for 1895 was that the official Spanish population estimate was less than 6 million. That does not make sense to me, so I've removed the inserted as and recast the assertion as two separate sentences. I've changed the second sentence from "[T]he official Spanish population estimate was less than 6 million" to "Estimates of combatant deaths range from 25,000 to 36,000; estimates of the number of civilian deaths during the conflict range from 200,000 to 3 million.", which is supported by the cited source.

The cited source is a page onn Bob Couttie's blog at https://bobcouttie.wordpress.com/. There doesn't seem to be a WP article about Bob Couttie, but he is an author of books about the Philippines, including

Please improve the article as needed and/or discuss suggested improvements here. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 00:06, 17 July 2017 (UTC)