Exhibits 1173 to 1180.


Exhibit 1173.

[Original in Spanish. L.S. P.I.R., 530.7.]

HONG KONG, March 3, 1900.

General ISIDORO TORRES, of the Filipino Army.

My DISTINGUISHED COMPATRIOT AND DEAR COMPANION: In view of the uncertainty and insecurity of communication with our illustrious Captain-General, in order that you may know all that is taking place in political matters affecting our country's most sacred interests, I deemed it advisable to establish this means of communication in order that our actions here and over there may be common and in accord, and also in order that by our interchange of impressions, we may be aware of what is occurring in the field of your jurisdiction.

In the first place, I must inform you that in spite of most of our towns having fallen into the hands of the enemy, yet due to the guerrilla system of warfare adopted by you, we know that the spirit of the people is firm, and that in all parts a quiet but ceaseless fight is being kept up against the[m] by all hated enemy. The guerrilla system is producing very good results, causing daily great loss to the enemy and resultIng in little loss on our part and the gain of much ammunition and money. Those in the towns, are assisting those in the field with money, and the latter are rivalling each other in heroic acts and in endeavors to kill and make prisoners of the enemy. In the beginning the triumphal entries of the latter, telegraphed to their government by their worthy Otis, did not appear to create a very favorable atmosphere for our cause, as the General represented us as defeated and our arms crushed; but now the entire world knows that these entries are nothing but comedy and their triumphs


nothing but lies. Even in the United States they are convinced that everything is fictitious, that the facts, the reality, are very unfavorable to them and that at the present time, they are the worst sufferers. And the weight which oppressed the hearts of those who sympathize with our independence and who work and struggle to obtain it, has been lifted. They again undertake the campaign, more ardently and more certain, if this were possible, of being victorious. We are satisfied. But we do not sleep for this mason, on the contrary we redouble our activity and sharpen our wits. It is a pity that the means at our command are not sufficient for everything! But we are seeking and will continue to seek all the means within our power to provide you there with everything, and to secure the realization of our ideal as soon as possible. Our representatives are doing all they can and using all the means at their disposal. In the United States the struggle between the partisans of our independence and those who are desirous of shackling us, is very bitter. I enclose a clipping from a newspaper containing the speech of an imperialistic Senator, in which he very clearly defines the policy of his party. This is it: "Everything American and everything backed by bayonets." We simple pariahs and slaves, this will be convincing to the luke-warm, and I do not say to others and still less to yourself, because you are already convinced of the fact, that it is necessary to continue the struggle without being dismayed and without hesitation, as I told some of our other Generals, to whom I wrote the other day. Slaves, colonists again! Is it for this that we have shed so much blood? No, no, death first. Death or independence! In this lies our salvation. The entire country, but especially we who belong to the army, representing the valor and energy of the country, in whose hands our country has placed its honor and future, its future also, because we are the principal lever in this struggle: your abandon and bravery, and your indomitable tenacity, from the most weighty arguments and must decide the triumph. Politics and diplomacy are simple aids; the arms constitute everything. Fight therefore, fight day and night. And to conclude I will transcribe what I have written to some of our other companions: "Attack with vigorous decision, defend yourselves with heroism; ambush constantly those damned invaders; do not permit them to have an instant of truce or rest. War without showing quarter. Do not permit hardships and obstacles to dismay you; on the contrary you must renew your efforts; of such stuff are heroes made. Encourage the weak, give an example to the nations not only of bravery but also of self denial; and do not mind that we stand alone and that no nation comes to our help. Better thus. Nations move only when they smell a good mouthful. As at the present time they extend us their sympathy only, we are beyond their grasp. Thus when the day of victory comes, it will be purer and greater. Do not become discouraged for a moment. Our cause is a holy one and with constancy and faith sooner or later, we must triumph. Who knows, perhaps the hour is not far distant.


Let us all in the meantime, be worthy sons of our country. Do not let us imitate the sad example of some who, in a cowardly manner, withdrew when they had advanced half way, or who treasonably sought refuge behind the nefarious Yankee shield. Do not let us be like them, the dishonor or our race, let us never think of increasing without our names that ignominious list which sullies our history. Let us place the honor of our nation very high especially we military men, who taking her flag in our hands swear to defend it to death."

This is all that I can tell you for the present, and it only remains for me to applaud you and yours from this point for your judgment constancy and envy you because you can fight the enemy at closer range.

Affectionate and enthusiastic greetings from all the members of this Committee and a hearty embrace from your friend and comrade.

(Signed) E. RIEGO.

P. S.-I would thank you very much if you would send us news and all that you may know regarding our situation.

Our representatives and all those working for our cause recommend without cessation: "Resistance; resistance; only in that manner will we be able to be victorious."

[Stamp:] Central Filipino Committee, Hongkong.