USS Maine

The story behind the sinking of the USS Maine

There is a true story about the powerful newspaper owner William Randolph Hearst that illustrates the relationship between the mass media and the institution of war.

When an explosion sank the American warship USS Maine in the harbour at Havana on February 15, 1898. The explosion caused the deaths of 268 US Navy seamen – three-quarters of the crew. The United States blamed Spain for the ‘sabotage’ of the USS Maine. Hearst anticipated (and desired) that the incident would lead to war between the United States and Spain.

At the time, Spain held many colonies; the US desired most of all the Caribbean region, Puerto Rico, Guam, Philippines and Cuba which were Spanish possessions. In effect, the American-Spanish War was necessary for the seizure of Spain’s overseas possessions.

He therefore sent his best illustrator, Fredrick Remington, to Havana to produce drawings of the scene.

After a few days in Havana, Remington cabled to Hearst, ‘All’s quiet here. There will be no war.’ Hearst cabled back, ‘You supply the pictures. I’ll supply the war.’

Hearst was true to his words. His newspapers inflamed American public opinion to such an extent that the Spanish-American War became inevitable. During the course of the war, Hearst sold many newspapers and Remington sold many drawings. From this story, one might almost conclude that newspapers thrive on war, while war thrives on newspapers.

‘The presstitutes are worse than the whores that they are. They never question the path to war; they only amplify it. Washington’s craven, cowardly, moronic vassal states in the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium, Poland, and the rest of the EU/NATO idiots are, by their cooperation with Washington, begging for their own destruction. Nowhere in the West is there a sign of intelligence.’ – Glenn Greenwald

The story behind the sinking of the USS Maine 5

About the Author

Michael Walsh

Michael Walsh is the author of over 70 published book titles. He has also ghost-written (book edited) over 40 books, novels and biographies for writer clients. He offers professional help for writers: editing of website content, books, novels and marketing content. You write it HE rights it.

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