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and exercised by you under the provisions of the constitution of the Republic of Cuba heretofore adopted by the constitutional convention and this day promulgated; and I hereby declare the occupation of Cuba by the United States and the military government of the island to be ended. “The transfer of government and control is upon the express condition, and the Government of the United States will understand that by the acceptance thereof you do now, pursuant to the provisions of the said constitution, assume and undertake, all and several, the obligations assumed by the United States with respect to Cuba by the treaty between the United States of America and Her Majesty the Queen-Regent of Spain, signed at Paris on the 10th day of December, 1898. “All money obligations of the military government down to this date have been paid as far as practicable. The public civil funds derived from the revenues of Cuba transferred to you this day, amounting to $689,191.02, are transferred subject to such claims and obligations properly payable out of the revenues of the island as may remain. The sum of $100,000 has been reserved from the transfer funds to defray anticipated expenses of accounting, reporting, and winding up the affairs of the military government, after which any unexpended balance of said sum will be paid into the treasury of the island. “The plans already devised for the sanitation of the cities of the island and to prevent a recurrence of epidemic and infectious diseases, to which the Government of the United States understands that the provision of the constitution contained in the fifth article of the appendix applies, are as follows: “(1.) A plan for the paving and sewering of the city of Habana, for which a contract has been awarded by the municipal council of that city to McGivney, Rokeby & Co. “(2.) A plan for waterworks to supply the city of Santiago de Cuba, prepared by Capt. S. E. Rockenbach, in charge of the district of Santiago, and approved by the military governor, providing for taking water from the wells of San Juan canyon, and pumping ine same to reservoirs located on the heights to the east of the city. “(3.) A plan for the sewering of the city of Santiago de Cuba, a contract for which was awarded to Michael J. Dady & Co., by the military governor of Cuba, and now under construction. “(4.) The rules and regulations established by the President of the United States on the 17th of January, 1899, for the maintenance of quarantine against epidemic diseases at the ports of Habana, Matanzas, Cienfuegos, and Santiago de Cuba, and thereafter at the other ports of the island, as extended and amended and made applicable to future conditions, by the order of the military governor, dated , published in the Official Gazette of Habana on the –– day of April, 1902.
“(5.) The sanitary rules and regulations in force in the city of Habana (and in any other city having official rules, etc.).
“It is understood by the United States that the present government of the Isle of Pines will continue a de facto government, pending the settlement of the title to said island by treaty pursuant to the Cuban constitution and the act of Congress of the United States approved March 2, 1901.
“I am further charged by the President of the United States to deliver to you the letter which I now hand you.
“LEoNABD Wood, Military Governor.”
Gratitude of the Cubans.—President Palma's response was as follows: - .
“I receive in this act the government of the island of Cuba, which you transfer to me in compliance with the orders communicated to you by the President of the United States, and I recognize that in this act the military occupation of the island ceases. In accepting this transfer I declare that the government of the Republic of Cuba assumes, in conformity with what is determined in the constitution, each and all of the obligations that the Government of the United States took upon itself in regard to Cuba by virtue of the treaty signed on the 10th day of December, 1898, between the United States and Her Majesty the Queen Regent of Spain, “I note that all financial responsibilities contracted by the military government up to this date have been paid; that $100,000 has been set aside to attend, in so far as is necessary, to the liquidation and settlement of the obligations contracted by said government, and that there have been transferred to the government of the Republic $689,191.02, which constitutes the balance in cash to the credit of the nation. -
“In all that Article V of the constitutional appendix be applicable the government will take care to facilitate the execution of the work of sanitation planned by the military government. The Cuban government will also endeavor, as far as possible and as far as depends on it, to comply with the necessity of sanitation and of the observance of the system established by the military government of Cuba. -
“It is understood that the Isle of Pines continues de facto under the jurisdiction of the government of the Republic pending what will be agreed upon between the United States and Cuba and in conformity with what is ordered in the Cuban constitution and by the law voted by the Congress of the United States passed March 2, 1901,
“I receive with great satisfaction the letter which President Roosevelt has addressed to the Congress of the Republic and to me on account of the sentiments of friendship therein expressed for the people of Cuba.
“I take advantage of this solemn occasion, when there is fulfilled the honest promise of the government and of the people of the United States in regard to the island of Cuba, and when the personality of our country is established as a sovereign nation, to express to you as a worthy representative of that great nation the immense gratitude that the people 'of Cuba feel for the American nation, for its illustrious President, Theodore Roosevelt, and to you personally, for the efforts which you have made for the attainment of that cherished ideal.”
President Roosevelt sent his congratulations to the President of Cuba, and Secretary Hay on the same day notified the nations of the world of the inauguration of the new government.
McKinley's Policy Carried out. The policy of President VCKinley has been worked out. Instead of recognizing a revolutionary government in Cuba, this Government has expelled Spain from the islands, conducted a republican form of government during the military occupation as an object lesson to the Cuban people, and given them the opportunity to peacefully formulate a constitution and elect and inaugurate a government representative of the whole Cuban people.
The Platt Amendment.—To provide for the inauguration of the Cuban government without the delays necessary for recognition, Congress, on March 2, 1901, adopted the following as an amendment to the Ariny appropriation bill, to provide for the future relations between Cuba and the United States:
"Provided further, That in fulfillment of the declaration contained in the joint resolution approved April 20, 1898, entitled, “For the recognition of the independence of the people of Cuba, demanding that the Government of Spain relinquish its authority and government in the island of Cuba, and to withdraw its land and naval forces from Cuba and Cuban waters, and directing the President of the United States to use the land and naval forces of the United States to carry these resolutions into effect,' the President is hereby authorized to leave the government and control of the island of Cuba to its people so soon as a government shall have been established in said island under a constitution which, either as a part thereof or in an ordinance appended thereto, shall define the future relations of the United States with Cuba, substantially as follows:
“I. That the government of Cuba shall never enter into any treaty or other compact with any foreign power or powers which will impair or tend to impair the independence of Cuba, nor in
manner authorize or permit any foreign power or powers to obtain by colonization or for military or naval purposes or otherwise, lcdgment in or control over any portion of said island.
"II. That said government shall not assume or contract any public debt, to pay the interest upon which, and to make reasonable sinking fund provision for the ultimate discharge of which the ordinary revenues of the island, after defraying the current expenses of government, shall be inadequate.
“III. That the government of Cuba consents that the United States may exercise the right to intervene for the preservation of Cuban independence, the-maintenance of a government adequate for the protection of life, property, and individual liberty, and for discharging the obligations with pespect to Cuba imposed by the treaty of Paris on the United States, now to be assumed and undertaken by the government of Cuba.
"IV. That all acts of the United States in Cuba during its military nccupancy thereof are ratified and validated, and all lawful rights acquired thereunder shall be maintained and protected.
“V. That the government of Cuba will execute, and, as far as nécessary, extend, the plans already devised or other plans to be mutually agreed upon, for the sanitation of the cities of the island, to the end that a recurrence of epidemic and infectious diseases may be prevented, thereby assuring protection to the people and commerce of Cuba, as well as to the commerce of the southern ports of the United States and the people residing therein.
“VI. That the Isle of Pines shall be omitted from the proposed constitutional boundaries of Cuba, the title thereto being left to future adjustment by treaty.
“VII. That to enable the United States to maintain the independence of Cuba, and to protect the people thereof, as well as for its own defense, the government of Cuba will sell or lease to the United States lands necessary for coaling or naval stations at certain specified points, to be agreed upon with the President of the United States.
“VIII. That by way of further assurance the government of Cuba will embody the foregoing provisions in a permanent treaty with the United States.
“By direction of the War Department the military governor formally communicated these provisions to the convention and advised that body that the President awaited its action thereon.
“On the 3d of April the following dispatch was sent to the military governor, who communicated it to a committee of the convention:
“You are authorized to state officially that in the view of the President the intervention described in the third clause of the Platt almendment is not synonymous with intermeddling or interference with the affairs of the Cuban gove a ment, but the formal action of the Government of the United States, based upon just and substantial grounds, for the preservation of Cuban independence, and the maintenance of a government adequate for the protection of life, property, and individual liberty, and adequate for discharging the obligations with respect to Cuba imposed by the treaty of Paris on the United States.
“ELIHU Root, Secretary of War.”
The Cuban Constitutional convention on June 12, 1901, adopted an ordinance making provisions identical with those of the Platt amendment, and that ordinance now provides for the relations between Cuba and the United States, Intent of the Platt Amendment.—Senator Beveridge of Indiana, in an elaborate article on Cuba and Congress, published in the North American Review for April, 1901, made the following coinment on the Platt amendment: “Congress was compelled to consider the character and inexperience of Cuba's population; the history of the attempts of similar populations to govern themselves; the present condition of such experimental governments on the one hand, and the situation of the same populations, guided and restrained by the protection of an administrative people, on the other hand. Congress had to consider, too, the facts of the last two years—the expulsion of Spain from Cuba by American arms; the oecupation of the island by American authority, law, and order; the feeding of starving Cuban thousands with American bread; - the establishment of Cuban schools, posts, and sanitation upon modern methods by American administrators; the American purification of the Cuban customs service; the impartial American administration of Cuban justice; the protection of Cuban life and property by an American and Americanized police; the beginning of the development of the richest agricultural, mineral, and timber resources on the face of the globe, under the faith of American protection; in a word, the American foundation in Cuba of civilization and of that liberty regulated by law which is the end and purpose of all free government. “Congress had to consider, too, the American people. The sacrifices of the American people in blood and treasure and administration deserved such consideration. The geographical position of Cuba demanded it. The historian of a century hence would have properly denounced any action on the part of the American Con