Posted by: Chuck | April 16, 2013

Battle of the Visayas and my Uncle Bill goes to war


Map of the Philippines showing the locations o...

Map of the Philippines showing the locations of Visayas, Mindanao and Luzon region. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hello folks I woke up this morning and thanked God for His blessings and then I was greeted with a sweet kiss and smile from my wife Beng. I hope your day ahead is a great day without any problems to speak of. All is going is well here in the Big House, no North Koreans or pirates are to be found in sight. Junior will be arriving today with a new “female” helper to help his Mom in her housework. You’ll never find any grime or dirt here in the Big House. If you notice I’ve changed the direction of my blog to be more in line with current affairs both here in the Philippines and in world report issues. On to our new puppy Jelly Bean has fit into our family nicely. I have no complains against her, she is very well mannered dog. Yesterday I emailed President Obama requesting for some medical help – since I paid taxes through years and stood tall guarding America since the Korean War back in the 1950s but I guess we’ll see is the only answer I can think of.  No medals, no hero padres, no that a boy pat on the back for me – just me and my trusty M1 rife and then later in the 50s I was a Navy crash firefighter in Puerto Rico. Show me the money! I wonder who is guarding the hen house.

The Commonwealth of the Philippines was invaded by the Empire of Japan in December 1941 shortly after Japan’s declaration of war upon the United States of America, which controlled the Philippines at the time and possessed important military bases there. The combined American-Filipino army was defeated by April 1942, but guerrilla resistance against the Japanese continued throughout the war. Uncaptured Filipino army units, a communist insurgency and supporting American agents all played a role in the resistance. Due to the huge number of islands, the Japanese did not occupy them all. Japanese control over the countryside and smaller towns was often tenuous at best. The Battle of the Visayas was fought by U.S. forces and Filipino guerrillas against the Japanese from 18 March – 30 July 1945, in a series of actions officially designated as Operations Victor I and II, and part of the campaign for the liberation of the Philippines during World War II. The battle was waged to complete the recapture of the central portions south of the archipelago and secure them from remaining Japanese forces. My Uncle Bill (William) Jones was drafted into the US Army in 1942 and then took his basic training at Camp Cook before being shipped to the South Pacific to assign to the Americal Division as a machine gunner. He saw action on Guadalcanal on October 13, 1942, and then on January 8, 1945, the Division began movement to Leyte and Samar, to take part in cleaning out remaining Japanese forces on those islands, and to invade Biri, Capul, Ticao, and Burias, and relived in March on Leyte, the Division landed on Cebu, combat teams made landings on Bohol, Negros, and Mindanao, where they cleared out pockets of resisting Japanese until June 17th when ordered to return to Cebu, arriving on 25 June. Training continued on Cebu for the proposed invasion of Japan. On September 10th 1945, the Americal landed in Japan and took part in the occupation of the Yokohama-Kawasaki-Yokosuka area.

English: Filipino residents of Cebu City welco...

English: Filipino residents of Cebu City welcome American soldiers. Source: http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USA/USA-C-SPhilippines/img/USA-C-SPhil-4.jpg (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Visayas operations of the U.S. Eighth Army suffered relatively light casualties in comparison to Japanese figures. The 40th Division in Panay and northeastern Negros suffered 390 killed and 1,025 wounded with the Japanese sustaining 4,080 killed with another 3,300 succumbed to disease and starvation. The Americal Division at Cebu and Bohol suffered 417 killed and 1,700 wounded, with Japan sustaining 5,750 killed and 500 wounded. Though some Japanese units had survived deep in the mountains, Gen. Eichelberger’s units had clearly liberated the entire Visayas. General Macarthur was particularly pleased with his subordinate’s fast-moving and decisive operations against the slow, methodical fighting of the Sixth Army in Luzon. On 21 April 1945, he termed Eichelberger’s Visayas operations on the congratulatory cable were a “model of what a light but aggressive campaign can accomplish in rapid exploitation.”

Happiness adds and multiplies as we divide it with others. Let our happiness overflow so that it touches the lives of many. May the peace of the Lord be with you always.

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