The Philippines History
||The first inhabitants of the Philippines arrived
from the land bridge from Asia over 150,000 years ago. Throughout
the years, migrants from Indonesia, Malaysia, and other parts
of Asia made their way to the islands of this country. In the
fourteenth century, the Arabs arrived and soon began a long
tradition of Islam. Many Muslims are still living in the Philippines
In 1521, Magellan claimed the land for Spain, but was killed by
local chiefs who did not want Spain’s inhabitance. However,
Villalobos made a Spanish return in 1543 and named the land Filipinas
after King Philip II. Spain soon after began their control. By 1571,
the country had control over the entire archipelago, except for
any Islamic areas.
The original inhabitants of the Philippines decided they wanted
independence, and fought against the Spanish during the Spanish-American
War. The Spanish succumbed to defeat and therefore, the Philippines
declared itself independent of any power. However, the United States
thought otherwise and purchased this land for $20 million from Spain.
In 1935, the US decided to give the Filipinos independence and
so Manuel Quezon was sworn in as president, as the process for full
independence began. The Japanese invaded the Philippines and ruled
from 1942-1944 until the US invaded, which won the Philippines its
independence completely in 1946.
Ferninand Marcos became president in 1965 and ruled until 1986.
However, he was not well liked and accused of fraud, and an assassination
of someone who opposed Marcos lead to protests. In 1986, an election
saw Marcos and his opponent, Cory Aquino, the widow of the assassinated,
both claim victory. The widow was powerful enough to spark enough
civil unrest throughout the country to make Marcos flee.
Aquino established a democracy, but was lagged with economic problems.
She was succeeded by Fidel Ramos in 1992. Ramos did try to help
the slumping economy and clean the country from its corruption and
In 1998, Ramos was replaced by movie star Joseph Estrada, more
famous for his acting abilities than anything political. He promised
the people a better economy, but ended up putting more money in
his pocket than anywhere else. He was impeached and put on trial.
He tried to block any access to his financial accounts, so the people
staged demonstrations in Manila.
Arroyo, the vice-president, was sworn in as the new president.
She has decided to let Estrada stand trial for his crimes. During
her presidency, separatist groups have been linked to terrorism,
the US has sent military assistance, and a military coup was staged.