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Post Moro Rebellion, Philippines
Created by John Eipper on 02/27/17 3:15 PM

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Moro Rebellion, Philippines (David Duggan, USA, 02/27/17 3:15 pm)

In writing that the US had no conflict against Muslims between 1805 and 1979, John E overlooked the Moro Rebellion, Philippine Islands 1899-1913 (Gens. Leonard Wood and John "Black Jack" Pershing were commanders).

Per Wikipedia: "According to Rear Admiral D.P. Mannix, who fought the Moros as a young lieutenant from 1907-1908, the Americans exploited Muslim taboos by wrapping dead Moros in pig's skin and 'stuffing [their] mouth[s] with pork,' thereby deterring the Moros from continuing with their suicide attacks."

This conflict also led to the development of the Colt .45 against the Moros' suicide attacks, and the 1930s movie The Real Glory with Gary Cooper. Again, per Wikipedia:

"An unsubstantiated legend has been circulated about Pershing ordering Moro juramentados to be buried with pigs because they allegedly believed that they would not go to heaven because of it.

"Vic Hurley wrote the screenplay for The Real Glory in 1937, which became a Hollywood film in 1939. It was based on a 1937 novel of the same name by Charles L. Clifford, a pen name of Vic Hurley's. There is a scene in the movie where Gary Cooper as Dr. Bill Canavan drapes a captured Muslim in a pigskin. He proclaims that all slain Muslim rebels will be buried in pig skins to prevent their entry into paradise. The Hollywood film served as propaganda for the Americans, portraying the American forces as brave defenders of the local population being terrorised by the Moros."

JE comments:  The Moro juramentados (those who take the oath) were an eerie precursor to today's suicide bombers.  They targeted the Japanese during WWII, just as they had earlier fought against the Spanish and the Americans.  Wikipedia gives a good overview of their actions throughout history.  Note the ritual wrapping of the body in strong bands and cords to restrict blood flow, to keep the wounded attacker from bleeding out before reaching the target.


The Real Glory is available on YouTube.  I plan to see it.

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  • Colonel Hillandale/Lansdale in the Philippines; from Gary Moore (John Eipper, USA 02/28/17 1:14 PM)

    Gary Moore writes:

    Thanks to David Duggan and Michael Sullivan, both on February 27, for the overview of the Moro juramentado suicide attacks
    in the Philippines in a forgotten era.

    I had never heard of this note in psychological warfare.
    And as another note, the Moro precedent lends resonance to later, more familiar trends, and here
    I don't mean later Muslim suicide bombing. Instead, in those same Philippines around the 1970s,
    there was "Colonel Hillandale" of the Ugly American. He was the non-Ugly foil, the harmonica-playing
    hearts-and-minds genius, and was modeled on the real Colonel Lansdale, who after Vietnam had
    counter-insurgency successes in the Philippines, then tried the Swan Island End-of-the-World
    broadcasts against Castro.

    But more to the point here, in the Philippines, Lansdale was said to
    rout the guerrillas of his age by using their beliefs not about pigs, but about vampires.
    The story was that he would find a dead guerrilla combatant, drain the body of blood,
    put two marks in the neck and leave the corpse beside the trail--whereupon the guerrillas supposedly
    fled in terror. I don't recall the pigskin stories of an earlier era being mentioned in the
    Lansdale tales. I wonder how the threads fit together.

    JE comments:  The Ugly American was published in 1958.  Wikipedia teaches us that it was so influential on JFK, that he created the Peace Corps partly in response.


    I wonder if Tim Brown ever met the real Col. Lansdale.

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