November 20, 1944

Emilio was here this morning. He said a Jap officer went to his house at eight o’clock last night with a German. The Jap wants him to vacate his house “to give place for this German”. Emilio who is hot-headed answered “I’m not going to vacate my own house for any German.” Emilio’s wife was nervous because she said there was a long and heated discussion and so she came in and pulled Emilio by the arm and begged him not to speak his mind out because he might be locked up in Fort Santiago. When the Jap left, Emilio said: “I am not going to leave my own house. If the German needs it, I need it too.”

Our building in Avenida Rizal is going to be taken by the Army at the end of the month. It will be used as a warehouse for food supply. All tenants were asked to sign a paper saying they agreed to vacate premises.

Pedro was here too. He has not returned to his house in Galas for four days because the Japs have “zonified” Galas. All males about 400 of them have been brought to Fort Santiago. Apparently, a Jap officer’s corpse was seen in Galas and they are making the arrested men reveal the name or names of the killers.

Sentries have been posted again on important street corners. Everybody is stopped and searched for firearms. The other day I forgot my residence certificate and I had a hard time trying to go home.

A Jap interpreter who speaks quite good English was here this noon. He looked like a Chinese and so I was tempted to ask him what he thought of Chiang Kai Shek. I was very surprised to to hear him say that he thinks Chiang one of the greatest man in the world. He said that the Japanese people also think very highly of Chiang but they regret “Chiang is is fighting for white race”.

I asked him what the Japs think of Gandhi. He said that although Indians worship Gandhi, he is better as a god. He is not a leader in the sense of action. He does not get things done. Or rather, his method of passive resistance cannot attain freedom for Indians. Only action can bring liberty to Indians, he opined. He believes Subhas Chandra Bose, the Indian revolutionary. More capable.

(later)

No raid today. People are sad. They’re beginning to think that the Leyte campaign will take a long time and perhaps the liberation of Luzon will not be effected until perhaps next year. Meanwhile prices of foodstuffs are rising higher and higher, betond the reach of even the rich people.

Aside from the undeniable fact that the masses are really suffering, what with the taking of houses, the scarcity of food, the high prices of everything, the drastic procedures of the military police, the abuses of Jap officials, I think that one of the causes of present unsettled, discontented feeling is impatience. People are very anxious to see landings in Luzon. They know that there will be great hardships and fighting and perhaps death but they want it now. They want to get it over with, the sooner, the better.

Will listen to San Francisco at six. I like Commentator Sydney Rogers. I have one criticism about radio broadcasts in America. They spend much time in silly nothings in broadcasts to the Far East. They don’t realize that people listening here are doing so at risk of their lives. What they want to hear is the news. They don’t care to hear a musical program. They want to know: what is happening now in Leyte? Why are there no raids? When will landings be effected? How strong is the force? Of course, not all things can be revealed. But they want to know the news. They want especially — war news. Commentaries on the news. The radio stations in U.S. must remember that people are tuning in under great risks.


August 20, 1943

The Japanese want to put an end to the guerrillas once and for all. Adapting a system of zoning in different parts of the city, they would herd all males from 18 to 50 years old into a building—generally a church—holding them incommunicado for some three days, during which the soldiers would search the houses and interrogate the detainees in the attempt to discover arms and guerrillas. Sometimes, the detention lasts for ten days, in which case the relatives are allowed to bring food and water to them. Not a few of the detainees are, at their release, weak and weary due to hunger and fatigue.