Endgame for Japan: From the Potsdam Declaration, the Atomic Bombs, and Surrender, the Defeat of Japan in Diaries from 75 Years Ago

(Above: February 27, 1945: Douglas MacArhur and Sergio Osmeña at the ceremony in Malacañan Palace in which the civilian authority of Commonwealth was restored in the capital) This year marks the 75th anniversary of the surrender of Japan and the end of World War II in the Pacific. The Philippine Diary Project contains three unique perspectives on the final month …

Life, death, decisions, during the Japanese Occupation

In October, 2013, the country will mark the 70th anniversary of the so-called Second Republic established under Japanese auspices. In anticipation of that event, the project aims to complete the publication of the Iwahig Prison Diary of Antonio de las Alas, a prominent prewar political and business figure, and member of the Laurel government. His diary, written while he was …

July 22nd, 1946

Could not sleep right away after retiring for the night last night——had been laundering a pair of socks which I plan to use tomorrow when we leave as it matches my Palm Beach suit. It has two little holes, however, but will ask Rosie to mend them today in a hurry. The night was rather cool, so much so that …

July 21st, 1946

Could not sleep well during the night, although had retired late almost eleven o’clock. Probably the events of the previous had made so much havoc on our nervous systems we were all upset, because at breakfast everybody reported having passed a bad night. Compadre Aquino even had an attack of slight tummy-ache -— thinks it’s due to the acid in …

July 20th, 1946

Woke up around 4 in the morning, but after moving was able to pick up some more sleep until the guard knocked shortly after six. Still sultry but not so warm, yet uncomfortably sticky specially after sweeping & mopping when begins to ooze out with perspiration all over —— Matches are getting scarce had to take an old one I …

July 19th, 1946

Tolerably good night no mosquitoes, not so warm. At bath was told by BaMaw that his case is due to come up again. The Sgt. had shown him a revised KP schedule in which his name was included with those of the Germans. Schweitzer on other hand has started his “fireworks” — did not come down for breakfast this morning …

July 18th, 1946

The night has been rather pleasant——there was a slight breeze blowing through the windows, and there being no more mosquitoes, slept rather well, though woke up intermittently during the middle of the night. Was awakened by the guard at little after six. Remembered instantly that today is Toto’s birthday which I had hoped I could spend in Kawilihan, but It …

July 17th, 1946

Night was warm & suffocating. Suffered a lot on a/c of heat during the whole night—fortunately the mosquitoes had disappeared—but must have over exercised yesterday afternoon, as I feel not only too tired, sort of worn out, but had actually sore eyes & a heavy head. The heat was still in my entire body & was perspiring all the time, …

June 24th, 1946

Fiesta of San Juan today—a lot of people must be getting doused up today crossing San Juan bridge, and perhaps even Mandaluyong. At breakfast Osias reported he had talked guards into not changing the rules about bathing and shaving. We had never asked for present schedule he said, but does not see any reason for changing it either. Laurel after …