January 3, 1942

At midnight, half a dozen soldiers posted themselves at the gate of the University campus. Two soldiers, accompanied by a Japanese resident who serves as interpreter, have been posted at every streetcorner to search for arms all those who passed, whether on foot or in vehicles. Some of them merely looked our papers or asked us to alight, searched and interrogated us. On two occasions they looked under our seats and inspected every part of the car. The Sta. Cruz Bridge, the only bridge open for us, is lined with sentries, about four paces apart. They poke their bayonets at any driver who passes without stopping at each outpost.

There are many people out in the streets, mainly menfolk. Only a few dare use their vehicles for fear that they would be commandeered. The Filipinos are frisked for weapons. The foreigners, on the other hand, aside from being searched, are also required to present their papers. Subjects of enemy countries are arrested and detained. The Chinese are particularly fearful, but they have never been hunted nor arrested.

December 30, 1941

Ramon Cabrera, a classmate, called me by phone and told me to hurry and go to the University of Santo Tomas campus where volunteers were being accepted. I decided to go to Manila and try to enlist once more. I told my father of my intentions and told him that I would not return until I had enlisted in any combat unit. Papa said nothing by way of consent. I knew that although he did not want to lose me, he wanted me to do my duty and was proud of me. I knelt before him for his blessing.

I waited for transportation the entire morning. At noon, a cousin came and informed me that signs posted in restaurants in Manila were asking Ateneo boys to volunteer. I knew right off that our Commandant, Lt. Eugenio Lara, wanted us. At last my chance to serve my country had come. Fortunately, a Prisons truck was going to Manila. I immediately bade good-bye to everyone in the house. Father Avery, Papa’s friend who happened to be visiting, also gave me his blessing.

I arrived at the University of Santo Tomas at about 4:00 p.m. and immediately made inquiries. I was told to report to our Commandant who was also at UST There I found many of my classmates and friends all dressed up in blue denim uniform, with full equipment. They were ready to set off for the South. Luckily for me, their departure the night before was held off. Three of my friends helped me pick my equipment. In ten minutes, I was ready.

December 11, 1941

The day before yesterday, the ROTC Commandant informed me that General Valdes had ordered all cadets to report to their respective schools for several weeks of intensive military training. By virtue of this order the schools are being converted into military headquarters.

The announcement met with enthusiastic response from 160 students, some alumni, and some 14-year-olds who have either preferred to board and lodge with us in the College, or simply cannot return to their own houses.

For two days, the College supplied the provisions. But I had to make representations with the Commandant to provide for the headquarters, since this is what they are doing in other centers.

The University of Santo Tomas, Far Eastern University, San Beda College, the University of the Philippines, and other centers have been declared for military use as headquarters, staff offices and other similar purposes. At the University of Santo Tomas there were more than 2,000 cadets. They also wanted to put up a military health office at Letran, but we succeeded in dissuading them.

March 31, 1936

Quezon telephoned asking us to the Commencement of the University of the Philippines at 8:15 a.m. I put on gown and hood for the first time since receiving from this University an LL.D. eighteen years ago. The ceremonies were very well run and seemed impressive. Quezon rose and congratulated the cum laude students as they advanced to receive their degrees. I was glad to see the large graduating class of the College of Agriculture. The law school students received most of the applause from the audience, which shows again how little perception people en masse have for real values. For the first time, the graduates in medicine outnumbered the law–65-64! When honorary degrees were given to Dr. Singian and to High Commissioner Murphy, Quezon was asked by Bocobo to make an impromptu speech, which he did, rather haltingly and with an effort–in praise of those two; he also made a handsome reference to myself. The error in the American school of oratory is that it is too fulsome. Evidently Billy Sunday was a typical rouser of pure American vintage. There is now a very strong campaign of flattery by the Filipino orators and press to keep Murphy here. They really like him and can get on with him as High Commissioner. A most difficult post to fill.

Talk with Don Rafael Palma, who said the plans of the new Education Council were to stress primary education so as to make it universal; but, he added, this was chiefly a question of funds. He asked me if I had noticed that at Santo Tomas University Commencement, Quezon was the only one of the recipients of degrees who did not kneel before the Father Rector–thus denying the subordination of State to Church –this explains his having Mrs. Quezon to pin on his cape for him instead of the Archbishop.

Conversation with Father Tamayo who marvelled at Quezon’s remarkable memory of his student days–“he was all alone in Manila when he came from Baler, and I tried to help him.” Later I told this to Quezon and he said: “Father Tamayo saved my life–I was starving and had nowhere to go–he took me in and gave me room and board free.”

Talk with General Reyes over the resistance by the Moros in Lanao against registration for military service. He regretted that the law had not contained a provision permitting the President to suspend it in certain provinces, commenting that: “we don’t want these Moros and Ifugaos anyway.” He added that the drawing by lot for conscription was a revival of Spanish days. He himself in the old era had not been drawn for the Spanish Army because his family was influential.

An article in a morning paper showed the alleged attitude of Lanao Moros against conscription:

“MORO PRINCESS BACK FOR VISIT–Princess reveals determination of her people to reject soldiering.

“Corregidor, March 27, 1936. Moro Princess Juliana Malawani, niece of Datu Cali of Lanao, a visitor to the island, revealed in an interview with the Tribune correspondent here that if the government forces the Lanao Moros to register for military training, they will fight to the last, according to a letter to her of another uncle, Datu Ganooki.”

I told Reyes I thought it was a mistake, anyway to arm these Moros–they might desert en masse with their arms.

Talks later with Unson, Garfinkel and Santos on this subject. General impression is that the Moros oppose everything:–cedula, abolition of the Bureau of Non-Christian Tribes and conscription. No use dallying with them. My impression is that the Filipinos are aching to get at them. They have been especial pets of the Government and are spoiled. Wood was largely responsible for this. The situation resembles that of the Apaches under Geronimo.

The speech of Roxas at the Commencement of the University of the Philippines was far above my expectation–he displayed perfect use of English and great mental powers. His voice is unfortunately too high, although through an amplifier perhaps, this is not so apparent. He uses no gestures except emphatic nods. If only he had a little of the English reticence and hesitation, I should say he is (mentally) the most convincing orator I have heard. Quezon expressed himself as thinking that Roxas should not have asked a question in his address–i.e., “what can the future of the Philippines he?” without answering the question himself; but as a matter of fact Roxas did answer this by discarding for the Philippines all permanent protection from other powers, and urging the Filipinos to prepare to defend themselves.

In the afternoon with the Government Survey Board. Unson, Trinidad and Paez–am rather embarrassed by Quezon having attached me to their board. Unson was discursive, with almost unintelligible use of English; Paez was completely silent; Trinidad was skeptical and coldly incisive. A good deal of laughter at La Comedie Humaine as exemplified by Department Secretaries and Bureau Chiefs. The board was evidently rather discouraged as to the outlook. A questionnaire had been sent out to all Bureau Chiefs and the only Bureau which has answered was that of the Weather! Trinidad has found out that 8,000,000 pesos is owing to the government from landowners on the Cadastral Survey, and 5,000,000 pesos in irrigation works. The latter had probably better be written off. Similar experience was had, I believe, in Siam, South Africa and the United States. At the end of the session, Unson said most kindly to me: “This makes us rather home-sick–because it reminds us of your days.”

March 28, 1936

At sea, bound for Manila. Quezon is trying to persuade Roxas and Alunan to go to Washington on the trade commission–they are holding back, probably for two reasons:

(a)  apprehension of failure

(b)  danger of appearing to interfere with Don Quintin Paredes, the Resident Commissioner.

I asked Secretary Quirino jokingly whether he had suspended any more provincial officials. He said “no”–I said why not suspend me? He replied “I should lose my job if I did.”

Back in Manila at 2:30 p.m. Very successful trip–excellent selection of guests, and comfortable steamer.

5:30-8:30 p.m. “Commencement” at Santo Tomas University in front of their new building on North Side. Founded in 1612, (?) this school has graduated almost all the leading Filipino patriots of the past. The 450 graduates of this year wore gowns with hoods of different vivid colours, thus making an extremely picturesque scene. Diplomas were given by the High Commissioner and by the Archbishop. Father Rector Tamayo had been Quezon’s professor in 1898. Only five Americans were there.

Quezon’s address was of academic merit and on a high level of civic service. He set forth the care necessary in appointing judges, and described how the success of a democracy must depend on the character of the judiciary. Quezon received the degree of LL.D. Mrs. Quezon putting on his hood–much applause.

March 5, 1936

Reporters who accompanied Quezon on his northern trip said that at the dedication of the Bayambong bridge and in three other speeches, Quezon stated that the opening up of Nueva Viscaya and Isabella was due to my hunting trips there of twenty years ago.

San Juan Lateran “commencement” of the military class and presentation of a gold sword to Colonel Vicente Lim, Professor of Military Science there. Marquee on the lawn in front of the old walls of city. Father Rector spoke in English–complimenting the cadets; he said that most of the leading soldiers in the revolt against Spain had been trained in this Corps “and though I am a Spaniard, I recognize the right of a people to fight for their independence.” This address was made just forty years after the day when the prisons behind those walls had been crammed with Filipinos supposed by the priest-ridden Spanish Government to sympathize with the Insurrectos! I sat next to the Father Rector of Santo Tomas University whom I knew of old. He said he approved of military training in the schools, and disapproved of college athletics because of their semi-professionalism. Bocobo, the President of the University of the Philippines, delivered the address in favour of military training; he commended it as a cure for Filipino slackness, tardiness, and lack of discipline in business as well as in social life. I said to Father Rector (who is Spanish), “He is telling the Filipinos some home truths which neither you nor I could express.” The Father Rector approves greatly of Quezon’s Government and he added: “he understands his own people.”

Saw Unson who, on my enquiry, told me Quezon had said nothing to him as Chairman of the Government Survey Board as to my working with him. I told him Quezon had contemplated turning the whole thing over to me, and when he created the Board instead, he had wanted me to work with them.