August 6, 1945, Monday

We were visited or rather inspected by Lt. Col. Jaime Velasquez and Maj. Hanz Menzi, both of the Police Command. They seem to be ranking officers. What the purpose of their visit was, we do not know. They seemed to have been investigating our condition. Col. Velasquez is a graduate of various military schools in the United States and when the war broke out he was Aide-de-Camp to Pres. Quezon. He is one of our most brilliant officers. It had been repeatedly rumored that he had married a daughter of Pres. Quezon, Menzi is Swiss-born, but a naturalized Filipino, He was a guerrilla leader. For his guerrilla activities he was twice imprisoned at Fort Santiago. He is lucky to be still alive.

We had a long conversation with them. One thing we got clear is that we can never hope to get out of this place until after the termination of the war. We will not even be transferred to Los Baños. We appreciate their frankness. Now we can cease dreaming.

Today Sergio Osmeña, Jr., son of Pres. Osmeña, arrived alone. He came from Muntinglupa. He was detained, I suppose, for his buy and sell business during the Japanese occupation. He was very thin. He was taken to our quarters and given a bed there. Later, it was discovered that he belonged to the enlisted class and he was transferred to the quarters of that class. It was quite a humiliation. I do not know how they make the classification as there are others like him who are in our class. I was tempted to write about his case to his father since Serging, Jr. is a very intimate friend and a compadre of mine. I was also quite intimate with his father, but on second thought I desisted as I do not know what the reaction of Pres. Osmeña under the circumstances. Serging has developed a little fever. I hope he gets well soon.

He showed me the letter which I have mentioned somewhere in this diary, that he wrote when statements of his father concerning him and his brother Nick were published in the papers. In effect, the President compared Serging and Nick to his son, Emilio who was killed by the Japanese for refusing to collaborate. Serging’s letter made me cry. As I’ve said before, even under the circumstances, I do not believe I could do what Serging did. A father should be respected and loved by his son no matter what he does.

Paredes received a copy of a letter dated May 20, 1945 which Atty. Pastrana of Capiz sent Pres. Osmeña. It was one of the most convincing in defense of the collaborationists.

Rev. Enrique Sobrepeña, a Chaplain Major in the Philippine Army, was courtmartialled for collaborating with the Japanese. He was acquitted by the Court, his defense being that he was forced to do so. It was a good omen for us.


February 25, 1943

Shoreham Hotel.

Quezon says that when he first came to Washington as Resident Commissioner he, like most Filipinos, believed that when they saw an American man and woman out driving together, whom they knew not to be married to one another, they were sexually intimate. This was the old Spanish idea. But when he got to Washington and made friends with American girls, he soon found out the truth as to our views on the sexes–he was delighted, and when he went back to the Philippines, he convinced them as to the real American situation in these matters.

This conversation arose from an amusing incident–he was at his desk writing a letter to a well-known Washington hostess–a widow, but still young. She had recently entertained him in her house at a diner a deux. This was the first and only time they had met, and she terrified him by stories of the spying of the various secret services which, apparently, has always gone on in Washington. She told how, during the last war, she had warned Bernard Baruch, then a most important official, that she knew there were six police dictaphones in “his” house. He thought the statement ridiculous, but went home, made a search and found six of them–two under his bed! He was so furious that he went at once to President Wilson and resigned his office. The President finally calmed him down. Well, this lady, in return for some orchids which Quezon had sent her after the dinner, wrote him a rather empresse letter–a little coy and pleasantly familiar. He was struggling with his English vocabulary in writing his reply and asked me to help him. I read his letter and told him that it wouldn’t do at all–his phrase: “I was to find that, as the Spanish say, you carry your heart in your hand”–I protested that it was dangerous for a statesman to write such a letter–if a third party found it, use might be made of it. He jumped as if he had been shot–he was only trying to be polite. He explained that the phrase above quoted meant in Spanish only “sincere” or “virtuous” but I again objected that in English “virtue” meant not the old Latin sense of the word, but only referred to sex! He was horrified, entirely rewrote the letter in uncompromising phrases and thanked me rather effusively for saving him. He made a great story for his family out of this!

Quezon, Andres Soriano, Secretary of Finance and myself in conversation. More talk on news from the Philippines, which comes from Colonel Peralta, chief of guerrillas in Panay, through MacArthur in Australia, from time to time, and also, in bits, from returned travelers like Consul Willoquet, etc.

George Vargas, altho head of the government commission under the Japanese is not trusted by them. He is always attended by Japanese “aide-de-camp” when he goes out; Japanese officers live in his house. His wife confessed to Willoquet who saw her alone, that they are not free agents.

Quezon thinks the Japanese have disposed of Manuel Roxas by a feigned airplane accident. Soriano thinks that they have taken him to Japan to hold as a hostage. When Quezon was in the tunnel at Corregidor, he thought he was dying, and wanted to go back to Malacañan. Roxas begged him not to do so. Later when the time came for Quezon to leave Corregidor to join to MacArthur in Australia (an event which was not then anticipated), Manuel Roxas begged him with tears in his eyes not to go from Corregidor. He exhorted him to “think of your fame.” Roxas followed Quezon to Dumaguete, and went with him to Mindanao, though he did not wish to leave Wainwright at Corregidor. Refused to leave Mindanao and joined General Sharp’s forces there. Sharp was ordered by Wainwright from Corregidor, when the latter fell, to surrender explaining that the Japanese would not give any terms to those on Corregidor unless all the military forces in the Islands also surrendered themselves. So, to save the men and women on Corregidor, Sharp and Roxas came in and gave themselves up to the nearest Japanese command. (NOTE–later–Roxas and Commander Worcester, U.S.N.R. fled to the mountains of Bukidnon). General Paulino Santos and Guingona, [who were not in the army, are in Mindanao. They have “gone over” to the Japanese.] Quezon says that Guingona was with him when Vargas’ co-operation with the Japanese was mentioned in Quezon’s presence, and, as Quezon says, when he heard no adverse comment upon Vargas’ action, being a “bright fellow” (Q.), Guingona followed suit. Quezon expressed a desire to know what Guingona had done with the four million pesos of Philippine currency he took to Mindanao to pay the army there–“if he kept it for himself…” I protested vigorously that nobody who knew Guingona could believe such a thing possible. Quezon agreed. “But,” I said “I have now heard you say twice that–if he kept it for himself.” Finally we agreed that he had probably burned the money, as his instructions required.

Soriano asked if he could bring the Spanish Cabinet Minister of War (Bergdorfer?), who is now in Washington, to call on Quezon tomorrow morning? Soriano said B. was an anti-Nazi, and had remarked that Quezon’s fame was now great in Spain. Quezon replied that he could squeeze in a half-hour for the call from B. “which should be long enough if I don’t start making speeches–which I always do!”

It appears that Justice Frank Murphy presented to Roosevelt the plan for the recent announcement that Roosevelt has already recognized the Philippines as possessing the attributes of an independent nation by putting Quezon on the Pacific War Council and asking him to sign the United Nations declaration. Murphy then told Roosevelt quite heatedly that he disapproved the decision to make Hitler the No. 1 enemy, and concentrate on him to the disadvantage of the Pacific area. Roosevelt took Murphy’s objections in good temper and told Murphy to “cool off.”

Somehow, the conversation turned back to Dr. Dominador Gomez. Quezon described him as a pure Malay type, but very big and a tremendous orator in the Spanish style, who swayed his audiences as he pleased. He had been a colonel in the Spanish Army. Was elected in 1907 as a delegate to the First Philippine Assembly. The election was declared void by the Assembly because there was no proof that Gomez was a Philippine citizen. Another election, and Gomez was returned by an even larger majority amid tumults and mob fighting. So they let him in!

When Quezon was Resident Commissioner in Washington he had occasion to make some uncomplimentary remark about Gomez. Quezon, traveling homewards, got to Shanghai on the steamer where he received a letter from Gomez challenging him to a duel. On arrival in Manila Quezon received a visit from the famous Colonel Blanco, also formerly a colonel in the Spanish Army in the Philippines and founder of the Macabebe Scouts, who appeared as Gomez’s second to challenge Quezon and asking who his second would be. Quezon replied: “I shall appoint no second. I do not wish to fight a duel with Dr. Gomez. But you may tell him this: ‘I give him leave to shoot me any time he sees me. Also tell him that any time he comes within one metre of me, I shall immediately shoot him.'” Shortly afterwards, Quezon attended a burial in Manila. With him were his cousin Miss Aurora Aragon–now Mrs. Quezon and Mary Buencamino. They knew about the challenge and were horrified to see Dominador Gomez standing near Quezon and all the more so since Gomez had his hand in his side pocket! Mrs. Buencamino slipped right behind Gomez and stood there to grab his arm, but Quezon pushed right in front of him to look down into the grave. Gomez drew out his hand from his pocket, but produced only a pocket handkerchief to mop his face!

Quezon then told of his marriage to Miss Aragon in Hong Kong in 1919. I (the present writer) was on the Ocean (Pacific) en route for New York when I received a radio from Quezon. “Married Hong Kong.” I went down to Dr. Oñate’s cabin to wake him, and demanded that he should tell me who Quezon had married. He was afraid to commit himself and it was a half-hour before I could get out of him the guess that it was Quezon’s cousin, Miss Aurora Aragon.

The marriage was secretly decided on when Quezon and Miss Aragon were in Hong Kong. Quezon sent his a.d.c. to the American Consul and requested that he should ask the Governor to waive the required 10 days residence, which was done. When the guests and the principals had met in rickshaws at the civil marriage bureau, Quezon turned to Luis Yancko and said: “Do you know why we are gathered here? I am going to be married right now!” Yancko’s mouth fell open with surprise and he stammered “but to whom?” Quezon replied: “To this young lady who stands beside me.” “But, but that’s impossible” said Yancko (meaning because they were within the degrees of relationship prohibited by the Church). “Impossible–how do you mean?” “Well” said Yancko “not impossible but improbable!”

Yancko gave them a beautiful wedding breakfast at the leading Hong Kong hotel.

At lunch today Mrs. Quezon and General Valdes were describing the discomforts of life in the tunnel at Corregidor. Mrs. Quezon got tired of waiting in line before support to get her shower, so she would wait until 2 a.m. and bathe then. Soon others discovered the way, and they began standing in line in the middle of the night. No curtain hung on the alcove which contained the shower. After the heavy bombings, the water main was broken, and for two weeks they had not only to bathe in salt water, but also to cook their rice and make their coffee in salt water, which entirely upset their stomachs.

Colonel Velasquez, a West Pointer, who was in the front lines at Bataan and Corregidor, was recently at the military school at Fort Benning, Georgia, where he says he made himself rather unpopular when the meals were discussed by saying: “Sometimes we may have to go hungry for a long time.” Velasquez told me he thought a campaign like that in Tunisia was necessary to harden the American troops, who were now overfed and thinking and talking all the time about their three big meals a day. He said he thought our American troops were pampered.

Quezon has started work again on his book. Has rewritten the foreword. Warner Bros have offered to make a film of it. Much talk with Bernstein about terms and arrangements. Quezon does not think that Morgan Shuster has been careful enough in editing the English of his ms. He evidently wishes to be thought letter-perfect in English. He says he now wants to finish the book–can’t do it in Washington–too many interruptions. Requests me to go off with him for 20-30 days and work with him on the book.


May 31, 1942

Quezon came into my room at the Shoreham for a two hours’ talk. Yesterday he had offered me an official position to go around with him and help him with his English in preparing his speeches. I told him I thought his command of English was excellent, and that I had not come to him to get a job. “But that was the reason why I asked you to come,” he replied. So here I am back again as adviser to the President, as I had been in 1935 and 1936. I hope I may be of some use to him in his very trying situation as head of a government-in-exile.

I then asked him whether he had foreseen the coming of war between the United States and Japan. He replied that during those last few weeks before the Japanese struck he had been sure of it. I enquired what he had thought of the note handed by Secretary of State Hull on November 26, 1941 to the two Japanese Ambassadors. He replied: “What did you think of it?” “I thought it,” I said, “the equivalent of a declaration of war upon Japan.” “So did I,” he put in; “with such a people as the Japanese,–no government could possibly accept such a proposal as to get out of China and give up Manchuria; the government which did that could not survive. So immediately I asked Admiral Hart urgently to call on me, and told him: ‘Admiral, this is the same as a declaration of war by the United States upon Japan. What will happen if our communications with the Mainland (i.e., the U.S.) are cut?’ The Admiral replied: ‘Oh, it will only be a matter of three weeks.'” Quezon continued by saying that a few days before Pearl Harbor in his speech on “Heroes’ day” (on December 2nd, 1941) at the University of the Philippines in Manila, he told the students how heavy his heart was, because many of those magnificent young men who had just passed in parade before him were soon to lay down their lives for their country.

Quezon then went on to describe to me the meeting of the American-Japan Society in Tokyo which was attended by Ambassador Grew, on the occasion of the appointment of Nomura as Ambassador to the United States. At this meeting, Foreign Minister Matsuoka had told them of his efforts to get Nomura, a retired admiral, to go to United States as Ambassador, because Nomura was known to be a personal friend of President Roosevelt. At first Nomura had been unwilling to accept the post, but Matsuoka went to his house and persuaded him to take on the serious and difficult talk of reaching a working agreement with the United States Government. Matsuoka then emphasis his opinion that it was the duty of the United States and of Japan to avoid war–if not, it would be a terrible conflict, and would destroy civilization. Matsuoka then sent a letter to Quezon enclosing a copy of this speech and wrote at the bottom of the letter as follows: “To His Excellency President Quezon: Dear Mr President, I hope you will agree with my views.” The envelope was addressed in Matsuoka’s own handwriting, and was handed to Quezon by the Japanese Consul General at Manila–so every precaution had been taken to conceal the identity of the person to whom the letter was to be delivered–even the stenographer was not to know. Quezon said that at the time, he thought this was a very “suspicious circumstance,” and that Matsuoka was in deadly earnest. “But,” Quezon added, “I did not then know anything about the real strength of Japan, and I simply wondered how they dared even to consider a war against the United States, since he assumed that America would immediately send their whole fleet against Japan and completely destroy the Japanese navy.”

He did not believe that the second Japanese envoy Kurusu was sent to the United States to join with Nomura in order to “gain time.” Indeed, he thought that it was the United States that needed “time”–not Japan, and he added: “The seriousness of the situation was apaprent when the attack was made on Pearl Harbor, because the Japanese never go to war unless they are thoroughly prepared.”

On the question as to why the Japanese aviation had bombed President Quezon’s birth place, Baler, Quezon did not believe at any time that this was done in reprisal because he had called upon his people to support the American side; “If it was aimed at me,” he asked, “why did they respect my houses at Baguio, at Mariquina and Malacañan Palace itself? Those buildings have not been damaged nor looted.” (N.B. It transpired later that the bombing at Baler had been aimed at the small wireless station there.)

Quezon then reported a conversation he had had a few days ago with the Chinese Ambassador who had told him Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek had recently gone to India not, as reported, to try to persuade the Indians to join the English in resistance against Japan, but to try to persuade the British Government to give independence to India!

I then asked the President to elucidate the phrase he had used: “doubts as to my duty to the people of the Philippines” which beset him when he arrived at Corregidor and of which he at once had informed President Roosevelt by cable. Of course, I could understand his perplexity as to whether it would be best to insist upon further resistance when he was already convinced that the United States neither could nor would send reinforcements nor supplies to them while concentrating on the German War, but I asked him to explain further his state of mind then on that momentous question. Thereupon, he replied that he might have considered advising his countrymen to join an association of Asiatic nations which were to be partners in the real meaning of the word but that he had no confidence in the Japanese offer to them of self-government. He added: “Those fellows would not really leave us alone to govern ourselves—-it would take them three hundred years longer to learn how to do so.”

Asked about the internal situation in the Philippines just before the war, Quezon began his reply by stating that he himself was a sincere democrat and really believed in the rule of the people, but that in dealing with the application of this theory, especially in times of strain, there were too many people going around advocating democracy for everybody without any real sense of responsibility towards the people themselves or knowledge of the struggle and fight necessary to protect democracy. He believed it was especially necessary to know the background of a people, and to understand what their history meant. This, of course, recalled my effort in 1936 to prepare for him at his suggestion, and when first acting as his adviser, a bill to reform the system of landholding in the Philippines, so as to protect the millions of small farmers (taos) in their tenant holdings and really to begin the dividing up of the many great haciendas. The bill was modelled upon Gladstone’s “three F’s” land bill of the 1880’s for Ireland, as had been suggested to me by Quezon himself. But, as related in the first part of this “diary,” the members of his Cabinet all balked at it and the President had handed it back to me with the remark that it was “loaded with dynamite.” I replied that I had, at the time, been greatly distressed by the failure of this effort at reform, but that I know a little of the background in Philippine history: how, always until the Spanish liberals had begun in their own country for reforms, with repercussions upon the Filipinos, the state of society in the Philippines as in other Malay communities elsewhere had been entirely aristocratic. “Why,” I said, “Your own Cabinet then, and most of the members of the legislature–those gentlemen were almost all aristocrats.” “Except me” he interrupted, “I wasn’t one.”

Then I got him to tell part, at least, of the story of the constant friction existing between High Commissioner Sayre and himself during the year before this war. He started by saying that Sayre is, personally, a very nice fellow, but unlike his late father-in-law, Woodrow Wilson, he does not understand government. He is one of those lovers of liberty who goes around trying to apply liberty as a solution to problems which arise without much consideration of the results to follow; that he started all his arguments with him (Quezon) with the statement: “I am a Christian gentleman,” which is no doubt perfectly true, but in itself does not solve by its application all political problems. The serious disagreement between Quezon and Sayre which had some bearings on inadequate civilian preparedness in the Philippines just before this war broke out, arose through what the United States would call the “Office of Civilian Defense,” and had nothing to do, as I had previously presumed, with any attempt by President Quezon to spend part of the $50,000,000 then held in the United States for the Philippines. Nor did Quezon try to get the United States to pay for his Office of Civilian Defense.

The trouble between the President of the Philippines and the High Commissioner started in 1940 when the legislature passed an act delegating to Quezon powers to regulate the civilian defense corps and otherwise prepare for a supply of food and for making air-raid shelters for the protection of the civilian population of the Philippines. The Philippine constitution placed his power in the legislature only “in a national emergency,” with restrictions on the power to be exercised by the President. They had studied the history of difficulties which had arisen in the United States over the “delegated powers” which are forbidden by the American constitution.

In 1941, during the growing tension throughout the Far East, Quezon issued the necessary executive orders based upon this grant to him of limited delegated powers. At once, a group of young Filipinos called the “Civil Liberties Union” passed a resolution of protest. High Commissioner Sayre was aroused, and is believed to have notified President Roosevelt who cabled Quezon warning him that adverse sentiment was aroused in the United States since the American “Civil Liberties Union” had joined in the fray. Quezon at once cabled back to Roosevelt that he would not exercise any of the powers so delegated to him without a direct application to him from High Commissioner Sayre.

A few months later, Major General Grunert then in command of the Philippine Department of the American Army, asked Quezon to attend a meeting with him. High Commissioner Sayre and the American Admiral. The general wanted to know what plans there were for the protection of the civilian population in the event of war and complained that so far as he could see, nothing had been done; what was Quezon going to do about it? The President replied: “Ask High Commissioner Sayre”–who sat absolutely silent. Finally, at this conference, it was agreed that a committee should be appointed as an Office of Civilian Defense, consisting of General Douglas MacArthur, then a retired Lieutenant General of the American Army, but engaged as Quezon’s Adviser on Military Affairs and occupied in organizing the Philippine Army, and Quezon’s secretary George Vargas, and A. D. Williams, adviser to the President on public works. This committee was to cooperate with the American General and Admiral. At the meeting, General MacArthur asked Major General Grunert if he would state to him first of all, as Department Commander, whether the American Army was going to protect the Philippines and what plans he had for getting the equipment necessary for such protection? The Department Commander replied that he was only a soldier, and knew nothing of politics; that he intended to fight for the protection of the Philippines but could not state what equipment would come to him for that purpose. General MacArthur then expressed himself as dissatisfied with the latter part of the Department Commander’s reply, and refused to serve on this committee until he had a satisfactory answer. So MacArthur retired from this committee and A. D. Williams and Vargas went ahead with their plans for air-raid shelters, etc.

Shortly after this, A. D. Williams returned to the United States after forty years of service in the Philippines on public works and construction, and by this time General MacArthur had been put in command of all American and Philippine forces in the islands.

At the public meeting on “Heroes’ day,” December 2, 1941, to which reference has already been made in these pages. President Quezon said in his public address that he had not been able to discharge his full duty and prepare adequately for the civilian population a sufficient food supply nor adequate air-raid shelters because he had been prevented from doing so by the President of the United States, and this statement was reported in garbled and misleading form in some newspapers in the United States. Further, Quezon stated that the protest against due preparation in the Philippines had been started by the local Civil Liberties Union, and that if they were thus responsible for any evil results, they merited condign punishment.

At dinner that evening, Quezon told me had rented the house of General Hurley, “Belmont,” near Leesburg, Loudon County, Virginia from next Sunday for the summer, so he will be only two days at Hot Springs–another of those sudden and unexpected changes of his plans to which his entourage are thoroughly well accustomed. This means, however, that I am not to have him to myself to get on with the manuscript.

Bridge in my room at the Shoreham, nine p.m. to two a.m. Very lively bidding and the playing was animated. The other players were Quezon, Dr. Trepp, his devoted physician from Manila and the attractive and modest young a.d.c., Lieutenant-Colonel Velasquez from the Province of Bulacan, a West Pointer, who has been through the battle of Bataan. When the Governor General of Australia met Quezon a few months ago, Quezon told the Governor General that Velasquez was one of the Filipinos who had been doing the fighting. The Governor General talked with him for five minutes and turned and thanked Quezon for the delaying battle in the Philippines which had helped to save Australia. Quezon, however, agrees with me in doubting whether the Japanese plans included the conquest of Australia.


February 21, 1942

Finally, a composite unit from the PC, 26th Cavalry, 71st Div, PAAC and even Ateneo ROTC Volunteers annihilated the remaining enemy forces at Silaim-Anyasan Pts. thus ending the so-called Battle of the Points in West Bataan two days ago. And so, Alas and Alackay, I can now say “All’s Quiet in All Bataan Fronts.” Have not seen any enemy plane whole day.

At Malinta Tunnel where I saw Maj. Huff, he informed me that Pres. Quezon and party left last night aboard submarine USS Swordfish headed presumably to Australia. He also told me cooler heads (Osmeña, Roxas, Abad Santos) convinced him to leave Corregidor. He did not like the idea of leaving which he felt was abandoning his loyal people. Among those I presumed with that party aside from the Quezon family, are VP Osmeña, CJ Abad Santos, Maj. Manuel Nieto, Maj. Jaime Velasquez and Virginia Bewley.

At Major Romulo’s Lateral Office, I learned from Lt. F. Isidoro that the M/V Don Isidro under Capt. Rafael Cisneros OSP (Res)  that left Manila last Dec. 15, broke through the enemy blockade, managed to reach Brisbane, Australia mid January. Capt. Cisneros volunteered to return with his ship to the Philippines. She was fully loaded with supplies for the starving USAFFE troops and left Brisbane Feb. 15 headed for the Philippines. Four days later, enemy planes found and attacked her near Weasel Island where she was sunk Feb. 19.  Nothing is reported about casualties but I hope Capt. Cisneros is safe.


February 19, 1942 – Thursday

I spoke with the President and asked him for permissions to go to Bataan. At 1 p.m. Major Velasquez and I, on the launch of the Apo, went to San Jose, Mariveles. Captain Lee Stevens and Mr. Boquer took advantage of our boat to return to Bataan. We arrived at San Jose. Lee, Boquer and Major Velasquez proceeded North. I waited for General de Jesus. In the meanwhile, I inspected Captain Bautista and Major Turingan’s coast defenses. I saw the Bautista family of Malolos who were near Captain Bautista’s place.

When General de Jesus arrived I went to visit Mrs. Segundo, and Mrs. P. Martelino and Mrs. A. Martelino who are camped near the U.S. Cavalry camp inside of the forest Km 167. From there I went to the Philippine Army Ordinance Depot to inspect. Neat, well kept. Men doing good work, however, I am worried about all the Enfield rifles that are stored there, in case the enemy brakes through our lines.

Then I went to the Command Post of General McBride where we discussed the situation of the civilian population and the morale of the troops. He is very understanding of the Filipino psychology and our needs.

At 4:15 p.m. I returned to San Jose. I wanted to return early to be in Corregidor for dinner. We celebrated Mrs. Quezon’s birthday we ordered a cake.

When I arrived I found that all the baggage was ready to leave. I rushed home to get my things ready, packed rapidly and saw that my things were sent to the dock. Then I went to the dock with Colonel Nieto.

As we were leaving the tunnel, the truck that was to carry important boxes arrived with the guards. The officer in charge told me that the enemy was shelling the dock. We waited l/2 hour and then we proceeded. We supervised the loading of all baggage, rice and other cargo on the barge which pulled out at 11 p.m. for the SS Don Esteban. All the members and personnel of the Presidential party with the exception of President, his family, his war cabinet & Colonel Nieto left at midnight, en route for an undisclosed destination. The captain was given sealed orders.


January 19, 1942 – Monday

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Got up at 6 a.m. Shaved & dressed. Took launch Baler at 7 a.m. for Cabcaben. Arrived there 7:30 a.m. Lieutenant Monsod aide to General Francisco & Major Javallera came to meet us. Lieutenant Colonel Manuel Nieto, and Major Romulo were with me. We took the command car and proceed to General Francisco’s Command Post we had breakfast there. Then we left on our inspection tour.

The first place I inspected was the Philippine Constabulary collecting station. I saw Colonel Luna and all the other Medical Officers with him. It is the best place of all I have been. Nice clean running water; good large trees which serve the double purpose of shade from the sun and from enemy airplanes.

From there I visited the Headquarters of the Philippine Army which is just across the road. Very nice and quiet place also. Well protected from Airplane attacks. I discussed some matters with them. I saw all the officers there. The morale is excellent, the spirit is high.

They were all anxious to know how soon would the help come. I told them that I have the pre-sentiment, the hunch, that I will return to Manila at the end of February this year.

It was already 11:20 a.m., so we decided to have luncheon at Colonel Luna’s place. After luncheon we proceeded on our tour of inspection. The first Command Post. we stopped was General Selleck’s. He was reconnoitering. This is the second time I missed him.

Then we went to General Segundo’s Command Post. near Morong. It is situated a few kilometers from Morong, on the side of the mountain. We had to do some steep climbing to reach his place. It was about 2:30 p.m. We found him eating his luncheon as he had just returned from the battle line. He explained to us the situation. “During the morning”, he said “a group of about 300 Japanese tried to make a landing in the beach. Our artillery saw it and let them have a taste of our shells. They ran away leaving about 150 dead and their guns”. At 3 p.m. he took us to his main battle line. We reached our line which was in the south-side of the Morong river. I visited all the machine gun nests and spoke to the boys. The morale was excellent. They were anxious to see the enemy and let him have it. Then we climbed the hill and saw our batteries of 75mm and 155mm guns. I spoke to Lieutenant Menties an American in command of the batteries. He said that he would stick to his gun alive or dead and “Believe me”, he added “when this baby (155) starts firing someone is going to get hurt.”

As I was afraid to be caught by darkness in the mountain road, we returned to General Segundo’s Command Post, dropped him at the entrance and the proceeded to General Steven’s Command Post at Km. 148, Pilar Bagac Road Trail 7, 3 Km. South to the Interior. We arrived there 5 minutes after a Japanese plane had circled the place and dropped 4 bombs. No damage done, only two telephone wires cut. No casualties. I saw him, Major Velasquez, Captain Papa, and other officers. I did not see General Bluemel as I had been informed that he had left with his division for the main battle line at Abucay.

We proceeded then to General Capinpin’s Command Post at Guitol — six kms to the interior of Balanga. We had to cross an extensive sugar cane field. After we had driven about ten minute, some Filipino soldiers yelled at us: “Be careful for snipers.” I paid no attention. A little farther we were stopped by an American soldier, who warned us that some snipers had infiltrated our lines and were shooting from the sugar cane. I saw some Philippine Army soldiers and one officer waiting. I asked them what they were doing and they replied that they were waiting for a truck to take them to General Capinpin’s place. I told them to stand on the running boards of my command car and shoot at the first sign of snipers. After a few minutes my guide (2nd Lieutenant Subido) said “there is the entrance to General Capinpin’s Command Post”. I jumped out of the car and suddenly I saw a large number of our soldiers attacking from my left. Unknowingly, I was standing two yards in front of a machine gun. The gunner said “Sir, please move away, I am going to start shooting.” Then firing came from our right. I then realized that we had been caught between 2 firing lines. I jumped back into the car, and my guide suggested that we escape through a back road leading to Balanga. We did. Nieto and I held our pistols in our hands ready to shoot in case of necessity. We were able to leave unhurt from that danger.

Earlier, in the afternoon, I had been informed that Lieutenant Primitivo San Agustin had been wounded, so I went to Limay where Hospital N-1 is located. I found that he was admitted on January 6, and left on January 12. No one could inform me of his disposition. I concluded that he had been transferred. As I was in the Limay Hospital, the ambulance arrived bringing Colonel Hudson, who had been wounded at Guitol, just in the place where we had been standing. He was bleeding profusely from his side. We then returned to General Francisco’s Command Post arriving there at 11:15 p.m. It is very hard to drive in those roads at night with black-out lights. The roads are not wide and the traffic is tremendously heavy.

We had dinner at 11:30 p.m. and then we went to bed. I was so tired that I just washed my face and hands and went to sleep.


November 17, 1941

The special Command and Gen. Staff Course (CGSC) in Baguio City that started last Sept. 1, graduated its students of Senior Army O’s for assgmnts. to the ten Divisions being moblilized, after a two and a half months schooling conducted by USA O’s Cols. Clifford Bluemel as Comdt., assisted by Clyde Selleck, William E. Brougher  and Albert M. Jones.

As of this date, the following O’s are assigned to their respective Divisions as Div. Commanders and Div. Chief of Staffs:

Division             Division Commander                      Div.  

                                                                                   Chief of Staff                    

11th        Col. William Brougher, USA    Col. Juan Moran, PA

21st        Col. Mateo Capinpin, PA       Col. Nemesio Catalan,

PA

31st        Col. Clifford Bluemel, USA    Col. Pastor Martelino,

PA

41st        B/Gen. Vicente Lim, PA  Lt. Col. Tomas Domaoal,

PA

51st       Col. Albert Jones, USA   Lt. Col. Ricardo Poblete,

PA

61st       Col. Bradford G. Chenoweth, USA  Col. Juan

Quimbo, PA

71st      Col. Clyde A. Selleck, USA    Col. Salvador Reyes,

PA

81st      Col. Guy O. Fort, PA          Lt. Col. Calixto Duque, PA

91st      Col. Luther R. Stevens, PA  Lt. Col. Jaime

Velasquez, PA

101st   Col. Joseph Vachon, USA  Col. Eustaquio Baclig, PA


August 29, 1941

All ten Military Districts in the Philippines are extra busy since yesterday.  One Infantry Regiment and Key O’s and EM of other organic units of EACH of the Phil. Army Divisions started reporting yesterday as ordered to their respective  Mobilization Centers  for  training. The PA Reserves being called to active duty (CAD) are expected to number 75,000 by 1 Dec ’41;  100,000 by 1 Jan ’42; and 200,000 by 1 Apr ’42.

Also, additional senior O’s selected to train at CGSS, Baguio to open Sept. 1 are: B/Gen. Guillermo Francisco; Col. Simeon de Jesus; Lt. Cols. Santiago Guevarra, Ricardo Poblete; Claro Lizardo; Paciano Tangco; Claro Lizardo; Irineo Buenconsejo;  Rafael Jalandoni; Calixto Duque;  Tomas Domaoal; Fidel Cruz; Bienvenido Alba; Patricio Borromeo; Majors Jaime Velasquez; and Emmanuel Cepeda. They are prospective Division Comdrs. or Staff O’s for the Divisions being mobilized.

Manila News report says  US Sec of State Hull warns Japan to leave the Pacific open to US Shipping.  Also Hitler and Mussolini met and formulated plans to counter US aid to  Allies.