Having fought gallantly for four months, weak, starving, sick, exposed to the burning heat of the Philippines, roughly 60,000 Filipino troops and 11,000 – 15,000 men from the United States surrendered to the Japanese on April 9, 1942 on the peninsula of Bataan. A fate that would claim 5,000-10,000 Filipino soldiers and about 650 American lives along the march. The numbers vary due to the inability to get an accurate count of how many actually were captured at the largest surrender of American forces since the Civil War, coupled with those soldiers who were able to escape. While the numbers might differ, the manner in which the brutal slaughter of Prisoners of War occurred is documented and remembered on April 9, 1942 as the worst, most egregious, displays of inhumanity in the Pacific Theater during WWII.
Araw ng Kagitingan, Day of Valor, is currently celebrated with prayers and laying of wreaths at statues and plaques across America and in the Philippines commentating the thousands of souls lost to a hostile enemy. Manila was first attacked on December 8th 1941, with the international date line that was December 7th, 1941, in U.S. time, the same day as the attack on Pearl Harbor. Outnumbered, with ill preparation by General McArthur, the country of the Philippines was the last to surrender to the Japanese in Asia with the fall of Corregidor on May 6, 1942. [Read more…] about The Bataan Death March