On the evening of February 4, Private William W. Grayson—a sentry of the 1st Nebraska Volunteer Infantry Regiment  —fired the first shots of the war at the corner of Sociego and Silencio Streets,  in Santa Mesa . Upon opening fire, Grayson killed a Filipino lieutenant and another Filipino soldier;  Filipino historians maintain that the slain soldiers were unarmed.  This action triggered the 1899 Battle of Manila . The following day, Filipino General Isidoro Torres came through the lines under a flag of truce to deliver a message from Aguinaldo to General Otis that the fighting had begun accidentally, and that Aguinaldo wished for the hostilities to cease immediately and for the establishment of a neutral zone between the two opposing forces. Otis dismissed these overtures, and replied that the "fighting, having begun, must go on to the grim end".  On February 5, General Arthur MacArthur ordered his troops to advance against Filipino troops, beginning a full-scale armed clash.  The first Filipino fatality of the war was Corporal Anastacio Felix of the 4th Company, Morong Battalion under Captain Serapio Narváez. The battalion commander was Colonel Luciano San Miguel. [ citation needed ]
Many stories like the one published by Hearst were printed across the country blaming the Spanish military for the destruction of the USS Maine . These stories struck a chord with the American people stirring public opinion up into a divided frenzy, with a large group of Americans wanting to attack and another wanting to wait for confirmation. The Americans that wanted to attack wanted to remove Spain from power in many of their colonies close to the . Those easily persuaded by the Yellow Journalism eventually prevailed, and American troops were sent to Cuba. 
What General Lee's feelings were I do not know. As he was a man of much dignity, with an impassible face, it was impossible to say whether he felt inwardly glad that the end had finally come, or felt sad over the result, and was too manly to show it. Whatever his feelings, they were entirely concealed from my observation; but my own feelings, which had been quite jubilant on the receipt of his letter, were sad and depressed. I felt like anything rather than rejoicing at the downfall of a foe who had fought so long and valiantly, and had suffered so much for a cause, though that cause was, I believe, one of the worst for which a people ever fought, and one for which there was the least excuse.