Battle of Paye

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  • Topic: Battle of Paye, Henry Ware Lawton, Lawton, Oklahoma
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BATTLE REVIEW ANALYSIS
BATTLE OF PAYE

BACKGROUND:

The Battle of Paye was a battle during the Philippine-American War between the United States and the Philippines. It was fought on December 19, 1899, near San Mateo in Morong (now Rizal) between the forces of General Henry Ware Lawton, and 200 Filipino riflemen under General Licerio Gerónimo. Lawton was killed in the battle, and his attack was repelled, making the Battle of Paye the final confrontation between Lawton's company and Gerónimo's. Lawton was the highest-ranking American commander to die in the Philippine conflict.

OPPOSING FORCES:

A.Force 1
Gen. Licerio Geronimo the commander of the 200 brave Filipino riflemen.

B.Force 2
Gen. Henry Lawton the commander of the Provisionary Regiment of the U.S. army that attacks San Mateo on December 19, 1899. This Regiment was composed of one battalion each of the 27th Infantry Regiment and 29th Infantry Regiment U.S.V, one squadron each of mounted and dismounted 11th Cavalry and of course his bodyguards composed of his staff officers and the troop I4th Cavalry. Their primary mission was to attack San Mateo a small town located about eighteen miles northeast of Manila in the valley of the Marikina River.

BATTLE SUMMARY:

The battle began while Lawton and his men were en-route to San Mateo and received fire from Filipinos under the cover of dense jungle and secures trenches in the town. Very few of the enemy were even visible.

Lawton's forces dug in and engaged in a fierce fire-fight. A team of Filipino sharpshooters known as the "Tiradores del Muerte" ("Marksmen of Death") set up position 300 yards (270 m) away. Having shrugged off cautionary warnings from his officers, Lawton walked up and down the line, rallying his men. A sharpshooter shot Lawton and killed him instantly.

The death of their commander was a terrible blow to Lawton's men, who took scores of casualties without successfully retaliating. Part of the reason that they could not dent the enemy positions was that, as a Filipino rifleman fell dead or wounded, a large number of bolomen were ready to take his rifle and keep a steady stream of heavy fire. When they eventually withdrew, it took almost a day to bear Lawton's body through thicket and mud to Manila, for funeral rites at Paco Cemetery. Lawton is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

Before his death, Lawton had written in a formal correspondence, "Taking into account the disadvantages they have to fight against in terms of arms, equipment and military discipline, without artillery, short of ammunition, powder inferior, shells reloaded until they are defective, they are the bravest men I have ever seen..."

The Filipinos rejoiced as their enemy retreated. It was their first victory. The Morong Command also had victory in other battles against the Americans. The riflemen who fought in the battle included Colonel Maximo Abad, who later led Philippine forces to victory in the Battle of Pulang Lupa.

BATTLE RESULT:

A.General Geronimo accomplished his mission by repelling/preventing the American troops in attacking San Mateo.

B. The casualties inflicted to the Filipino soldiers were unknown while in the American soldiers it were 14 KIA and 15 WIA.

ANALYSIS/ASSESSMENT:

A.The decisive point of this operation is to occupy the Marikina River bank to prevent the advancing troops of Gen Lawton to attacking San Mateo.

B.Principles of War

a. Principle of objective – Troops of Geronimo inflicts large casualties on the side of Gen Lawton and eventually destructs their will to fight when Gen Lawton hit by the sniper known as “tiradores del muerte”.

b. Principle of Mass – Gen. Geronimo gathered his all available troops and marched towards Paye in order to stop the advancing force of Gen. Lawton. Moreover, Gen. Geronimo concentrates his combat power while his enemy’s crossing the river.

c. Principle of Unity of Command...
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