October 14, 1972

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11:20 PM

Oct. 14, 1972

Saturday

Malacañan Palace

Manila

I have finally decided that in the Land Reform Program we should keep the government out of the transaction for the transfer of ownership of the land to the tenant. It would be a direct transaction between landowner and tenant choosing one of two schemes:

1. Payment in 14 years of 25% of the decided rent. This would be guaranteed by the cooperative that would have to be organized before ownership can be transferred to the tenant.

2. The organization of a corporation 25% of which shall belong to the landowner.

And there will be 0-retention by the landowner –except where the landowner tills the land himself– so he retains 6 hectares for each member of the family.

I attach the notes on our conference.

The use of bonds I rejected as this involves ₱7.5 billion at ₱5,000 per hectare.

Met Amb. Byroade at 9:45 AM who congratulated me. I asked him to inform his government I am asking for help in Land Reform. He feels that he can obtain such help from the U.S. Congress.

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Oct. 14th (Con’t)

Malacañan Palace

Manila

But the doctors in Clark Air Force Base have discovered a quarter size whitish spot inside his mouth under his tongue due to his smoking. So he is supposed to stop smoking as the spot is pre-malignant.

Was at Fort Bonifacio 10:30-11:45 PM inspecting the troops beyond the target range in training for attack. NBC took shots of me on the radio and the heliborne troops taking a hill.

Then worked on new schools to be opened, the amendments to the orders on suspension and dismissal of policemen, the take over of IISMI and Elirol, the exclusion of clearance requirements for certain groups of persons.

Tonight I viewed the media presentations of two groups –the APAA and the Tony Cantero groups.

I met Eraño Manalo of the Iglesia ni Cristo. He is worried that he may be picked up. And the BIR just notified him his books of accounts would be examined. Of course I accepted the resignation of Judge Herminio Moreno, married to his sister.

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Oct. 14th (Con’t)

Malacañan Palace

Manila

And in the early morning of Saturday, Sept. 22nd, shooting erupted in the Central Building of the Iglesia in Quezon City, beside the U.P. resulting in the death of one Iglesia guard and the wounding of three more while on the government side three marines were wounded. And he claims it was due to the fact that the Metrocom team head who was asked what they wanted by an Iglesia man, Ka Esguerra (a Lt. Ilagan who was apparently nervous) did not show his written orders nor did he explain his mission. Only the call of Sec. Ponce Enrile stopped the shooting.

He claims that the NPA would be trying to win their men to their side. But that they could not join a Godless organization.

I believe he is scared of being picked up.

 


February 26, 1950

Lunch at the Staplers lovely house in Rizal (next door to the Huie home). He is Capt. Jack Stapler’s brother, and in Marsman & Co. He says the outlook for foreign firms in the Philippines is pretty dim, chiefly because they are the only ones which pay 100% taxes. Stapler also spoke of the crowd of American swindlers and carpetbaggers who came to Manila after the war, and gave the American community a black eye. He also mentioned the scandalous sale of US Army and surplus stores by American officers and men; and said that US Army people are even today selling supplies stolen from Clark Field. Dinner here with Foster Knight and a man named Fuller, who is going to Formosa for E.C.A. He told of the 4 brides who compared notes after a month of marriage and discussed, in political terms, their wedding night experiences. No. 1 said it was a case of Roosevelt, — over and over again. No. 2 said she could quote Churchill: blood, sweat and tears. No. 3 mentioned Dewey, who tried to get in twice but failed both times; No. 4 said it was like Truman: he got in twice but didn’t know what to do after he got in.

Where to place a statue of Quirino in Washington. Not near Washington, who couldn’t tell a lie. Not near Honest Abe Lincoln. Put it next to Christopher Columbus, who didn’t know where he was going when he started, didn’t know where he was when he got there, and did it all on borrowed money.


January 18, 1945

One day the American troops were delayed in arriving at Manaoag in recapturing the fifteen kilometers which separated it from San Fabian. It took them one week to advance eleven kilometers to Pozorrubio. The cause was the Pugaros. The troops that landed in Lingayen went directly to Manila in forced marches which were not really forced. They could have advanced and come within a few days in an unprecedented blitzkrieg. But the Japanese had retreated to the eastern and western mountain ranges, and the liberators feared flank attacks which would isolate their vanguard from the main body of the Army. In spite of having slowed down their march, their provisions hardly caught up with them. The High Command had estimated that they could enter Manila by the end of March. Now they expected to make it on the first week of February.

There was another surprise for us since we sang hossana in praise of those who came in the name of the Lord. We feared that the Japanese air force would not give a moment of respite to the fleet and the landed troops, with successive bombings by suicide squads. At least this was what the Japanese radio and press reported every time a landing was made. The Americans just laughed off the reports of Radio Tokyo about the damage suffered by the American convoys and forces, with hundreds of ships sunk and entire divisions annihilated.

Almost every night, the air raid signal rang out, but it was seldom that a Japanese plane penetrated through, coming in a suicide attempt as it was caught between anti-aircraft fire and the clutches of some night fighters which patrolled the occupied areas. It was seldom that a desperate Japanese plane succeeded in dropping a bomb among the innumerable ships anchored on the Gulf. What happened to the zero fighters and the Wild Eagles whose exploits were so much praised by the Tokyo radio? In Lingayen, the Japanese left behind more than fifty planes, and more than 300 in Clark Field.


December 18, 1944

The alarm sounded yesterday, but the skies of Manila were clear of planes. The raids were made over Clark Field and Legazpi. However, we were kept alert by the raid today from 8:00 in the morning to 5:30 in the afternoon. In the morning a plane was shot down and the pilot parachuted down. A short raid was made in the afternoon over Manila Bay. Official sources said that Clark Field was raided anew, simultaneously with Aparri, Cebu and Leyte, although the press reported very light damage.

A new reporter wrote: “Our first impulse upon learning about the destructive attacks of the immense enemy forces was to be thankful we are spared from the air attack. At least for this year.” But we knew that the American Fleet was still afloat and continues to inch in, entering by the Lingayen Gulf from where it pounds on the coastal defenses.


September 23, 1944

Manila’s agog. Everybody’s talking and whispering and laughing and dreaming about the raid. Everybody feels the Americans will be here before Christmas. Somebody opined “around New Year” and he was branded a low-down defeatist. A thousand pseudo-generals have sprung with theories on how easily the Americans will retake Luzon.

Despite the very tense situation, Manoling’s wedding went on. Very few guests were able to attend the wedding, according to Vic. The Casino Español was unable to serve the breakfast because the servants didn’t show up. Vic Fernandez had to improvise on the organ because the organist was not able to go to church. The bride arrived late and the priest didn’t say Mass anymore. When my brother congratulated Manoling, the lovesick Romeo closed his eyes and sighed: “Ah, I made it!”.

Biked downtown with Joe Meily to see people. Most of the stores were closed. There were many people carrying bundles, perhaps evacuating. Saw many sailors lying on the grass under the trees in the Sunken Gardens. The poor fellows looked haggard and shell-shocked. A cochero said those sailors swam to shore.

Visited Ateta. She was beautiful, as usual. She was dressed in blue and I’ve got to admit my heart skipped a couple of beats. She’s not the type of girl that makes you feel like whistling when you see her. Her beauty inspires respect, the kind of adoration you’d give to an angel.

Sentries wouldn’t let me pass through Ayala Bridge. Joe had a permit but the insolent sentry wouldn’t even look at the pass. He just shouted “Kora!” and pointed his bayonet at us.

Still no water. The servants took three cans of water from a nearby well and I took a bath with that. The telephone has been dead the whole day. So far nothing has happened to the electric service.

Several AA shrapnel fell near Tio Phil’s house, killing a horse and a cat. One servant of Tio Charlie was wounded in the arm by AA shell-bursts and Tantoco’s milk-boy was killed by a stray bullet.

Provincial reports reveal that more than 120 Japanese planes were destroyed in Clark Field, Pampanga. About 80, were downed in dogfights. Our Japanese neighbor boasts that four U.S. aircraft carriers have been sunk off the eastern coast of Tayabas.

Two air-raid alarms this morning but no bombing. Saw four U.S. observation planes flying very high. There were still fires in the direction of the Bay area but I couldn’t ascertain what was burning. A Japanese soldier said it was oil.

Two Japanese soldiers went to the house today. They asked for water because they were thirsty. Supplies from the Piers are being transferred in residential districts. One of the soldiers said that he came from New Guinea; the other from Singapore. I asked “How many soldiers are going to defend Luzon.” One of them said “More than a million.”

President Laurel declared war on the U.S. and Britain. Somebody said “What’s the difference?” Everybody knows, that Laurel is just a puppet, making a strong effort to show that he isn’t.

Papa has been busy the whole day asking the Japanese authorities to give us a few days to transfer our furniture. They agreed very reluctantly. They need private houses very badly because they are afraid to live in barracks. They’re hiding under the skirts, so to speak, of the civilian population.

Will try to tune in on KGEI. Am very anxious to know what America has to say about the raids on Manila. The Americans in the concentration camp in Santo Tomas must be excited these days. I’m sure they saw the planes and felt the ground shaking. Must stop writing. Somebody is ringing the doorbell.


December 16, 1941

Lts. Brownwell, Crosby, Stone, and myself, all from the 17th Pursuit Squadron, were told to go back to Nichols, take over the 17th and reorganize it, and take charge of maintenance work at both Nichols and Nielson airfields. From all reports everything was pretty much of a mess at these places. Lt. Brownwell was the officer in charge. This was a break for me because I wanted to be in Manila, and I was determined to do my best.

Even though we had been apart for only a week, it was a happy reunion that Dorothy and I had when I reached Manila that evening. Also, it was quite treat to sleep in a warm bed after spending a week sleeping on a cot in the open at Clark. It rained nearly every morning before daylight where we were, and everyone would be soaked.


December 13, 1941 

Light straffing attack on C.F. early, bombs an hour later. Left for Man. Arrived in time for raid, but it was on N.F. 54 ships. One bomb fell in city near us. They mostly missed N.F. but really cleaned out the barrio.

Joe Cole and other 21st Pursuiters arrived with Burns from Clark Field during the raid. The bombs were missing Nichols Field, falling one block west, where two 3d Pursuit pilots were hunkered down. One of them, 1st Lt. Bob Hanson, was hit and killed by bomb fragments. Many of the bombs fell on Barrio Baclaren adjacent to Nichols Field, resulting in carnage among the Filipino inhabitants. 


December 12, 1941 

Arrived C.F. in time for raid–9 planes went directly overhead at about 2000′. Awful to hear bombs getting closer and nothing but a hole for protection. No pursuit in the air, are saving them until we have more.

At about 10:30 this morning, 18 Japanese Betty bombers in two sections descended below the heavy overcast obscuring Clark Field and dropped their loads from about 900 feet only. Many of the bombs failed to go off and were detonated later in the day by demolition crews. It had been a terrifying experience for those on the field.