Japanese Occupation

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Date Submitted: 05/22/2012 02:59 AM

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The World War 2 started when Japan bombed the US Naval Base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on the morning of December 7, 1941. The US declared war against Japan which was followed by Britain’s own declaration. Britain kept their word that if and when US wages war against Japan, a declaration of war from Britain would follow within an hour.

Japan started to invade the Philippines and the US troops led by Gen. Douglas McArthur could not keep the Japanese out. McArthur and his troops vacated their Manila headquarters and moved to Corregidor. McArthur also declared Manila an “open city”. This meant that it was not under the Americans or anyone anymore, thus anyone could enter the city peacefully. The declaration also meant that, by international law, bombs and other weaponry were not allowed in the city. Given these parameters, the Japanese still bombed Manila. This was followed by the Lingayen Operation.

The US troops finally surrendered to the Japanese. McArthur fled to Australia and said his most famous line, “I shall return.” This was followed by the fall of Bataan which hastened the fall of Corregidor. Filipino and American prisoners of war were forced into the Bataan Death march, which killed thousands due to exhaustion, hunger and illness.

The HukBaLaHap was organized on March 29, 1942 with the goal of independence. Headed by Luis Taruc, it was the only guerilla unit that did not follow orders from Gen. McArthur.

The Battle of the Philippine Sea was a crucial naval battle where the Japanese were finally defeated by the US troops. The improvements in the American troops’ tactics and weaponry surpassed that of the Japanese, which in effect caused them the war. After the Battle of Manila, the Japanese finally surrendered to the US and Gen. Douglas McArthur announced the liberation of the Philippines on July 5, 1945.

The Potsdam Declaration on July 26, 1945 threatened the Japanese to surrender to the US of “prompt and utter destruction.” The Japanese simply...