Dr Elliott, President of Purdue University, Indiana, on board returning from advising on the proposed reorganization of the University of the Philippines. Says that before leaving he submitted his report which took 40 minutes to read. Gil told him it was the only time Quezon was ever known to have kept quiet that long!
Elliott says he saw students informally and “off the record,” and learned a lot that way. That the University is now disorganized, though Quezon is deeply interested in its success and asked Dr. Elliott whether he should take over the portfolio of Public Instruction ad interim, and Elliott replied: “I am sorry to say–no!! Mr President!” He remarked that Quezon though claiming to be an oriental, had more of the occidental outlook than any of the rest of them. Thinks him “like all dictators, rather ruthless.” He believes Quezon is running down physically, and that Roxas is training himself for the presidency–the latter is very abstemious and “the only Filipino who goes in for physical exercise.”
He (Elliott) came out to Manila at the instance of Manuel Roxas, the man whom he places highest of the Filipinos today. He said Roxas should not serve as Chairman of the Board of Regents of the University because he fills too many political posts, and there should be no politicians on the board.
The diary is suspended here, and not resumed until May 1942. War conditions made it impossible for me to see Quezon meanwhile. The war began on September 1st, 1939 while I was again in France.