Masaharu Homma (本間 雅晴, Honma Masaharu, November 27, 1887 – April 3, 1946) was a lieutenant general in the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. [10] Most of the 80,000 prisoners of war captured by the Japanese at Bataan were forced to undertake the infamous "Bataan Death March" to a prison camp 105 kilometers to the north. A highly effective guerilla campaign by Philippine resistance forces controlled sixty percent of the islands, mostly jungle and mountain areas. Withdrawal The Japanese Imperial General Staffdecided to make the Philippines their final line of defense, and to stop the American advance towards Japan. [3], In 1937, Homma was appointed aide-de-camp to Prince Chichibu, a brother of the Emperor. [42][43] Others were combined units of Americans, military and civilian, who had never surrendered or had escaped after surrendering, and Filipinos, Christians and Moros, who had initially formed their own small units. [35] However, guerrilla activities on Luzon were hampered due to the heavy Japanese presence and infighting between the various groups,[36] including Hukbalahap troops attacking American-led guerrilla units. After the war, Homma was convicted of war crimes relating to the actions of troops under his direct command and executed by firing squad on April 3, 1946. [30] Several islands in the Visayas region had guerrilla forces led by Filipino officers, such as Colonel Macario Peralta in Panay,[30][31] Major Ismael Ingeniero in Bohol,[30][32] and Captain Salvador Abcede in Negros. For several reasons it was unknown how many did not surrender, although probably around 100 to 200 Americans ended up with Fertig's guerrillas. Japanese General Yamashita Tomoyuki is said to have buried a fortune in war loot in the Philippines at the end of World War II. An example of this was Troop C, 26th Cavalry. However, the plan was tactically sound, and its provisions for defense were applicable under any local situation. This enabled the forwarding of intelligence regarding Japanese forces in the Philippines to SWPA command, as well as consolidating the once sporadic guerrilla activities and allowing the guerrillas to help in the war effort. These Guerrilla forces all through the Philippine Islands made brave efforts which ended up impeding the Japanese severely. There was also a growing subversion within Homma's command by a small group of insubordinates, under the influence of Colonel Masanobu Tsuji. They also assisted the US forces significantly during the period of Philippine liberation in 1944 and 1945. After the war, Homma was convicted of war crimes relating to the actions of troops under his direct command and executed by firing squad on April 3, 1946. An estimated 527,000 Filipinos, both military and civilians, had been killed from all causes; of these between 131,000 and 164,000 were killed in seventy-two war crime events. The 76,000 starving and sick American and Filipino defenders in Bataan surrendered on 9 April 1942, and were forced to endure the infamous Bataan Death March on which 7,000–10,000 died or were murdered. Japanese Celebration of Capturing Battery Hearn on Corregidor May 1942 Despite the lack of communication, some American and Filipino soldiers were able to evade the Japanese and go into hiding. A failure of law process to punish such acts of criminal enormity would threaten the very fabric of world society. Lacking air cover, the American Asiatic Fleet in the Philippines withdrew to Java on 12 December 1941. ALBUM – view my Japanese Occupation of the Philippines WW2 album. The landings on the island of Leyte were accompanied by a force of 700 vessels and 174,000 men. The aircraft o… The Philippines should become an "independent member within an East Asian prosperity zone". When General Douglas MacArthur returned to active duty, the latest revision of plans for the defense of the Philippine Islands—called WPO-3—was politically unrealistic, assuming a conflict only involving the United States and Japan, not the combined Axis powers. General Douglas MacArthur in his review of the case wrote, If this defendant does not deserve his judicial fate, none in jurisdictional history ever did. [37][38], Lack of equipment, difficult terrain and undeveloped infrastructure made coordination of these groups nearly impossible, and for several months in 1942, all contact was lost with Philippine resistance forces. At stake in the fight was a golden Buddha statue and other loot Roxas said he had unearthed from a secret underground tunnel. Homma commanded the Japanese 14th Army, which invaded the Philippines and perpetrated the Bataan Death March. In addition, troops moved against Allied positions on Hong Kong and Wake Island. They gathered important intelligence information and smuggled it out to the U.S. Army, a process that sometimes took months. I believe the Japanese tanks had some very limited success against US M3 Stewart tanks in the Philippines but that is about it. A Japanese soldier who hunkered down in the jungles of the Philippines for nearly three decades, refusing to believe that World War II had ended, has died in … The JIA were ordered to empty the banks, factories, museums, temples and even private homes. WWII Japanese Premier Tojo & Gen. Waji-Ehk Arrive in Manila. In the Battle of Manila from February to March 1945, the United States Army and the Philippine Commonwealth Army advanced into the city to drive out the Japanese. [15] The puppet republic was headed by President José P. 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