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Salternik February 1945
U. S. Army 1945
Lat 14° 31' 0N Long 121° 0' 0E Manila is the largest city and capital located in the National Capital Region (NCR) on Luzon in the Philippines. Borders Manila Bay to the west, Navotas and Caloocan City to the north, Quezon City to the northeast, San Juan and Mandaluyong City and Pasig City to the east, Makati City and Taguig City to the southeast and Pasay City to the south. Prewar, Manila was dubbed "Pearl of the Orient". In Tagalog spelled Maynilà. The Metro Manila area is the is the national capital of the Philippines and considered the most densely populated cities in the world as of 2018. Today officially known as the City of Manila.
During the 14th century, Luzon was part of the Hindu Majapahit Empire. Around 1485, invaded by the Sultan Bolkiah and became a part of the Sultanate of Brunei and was part of the the Islamic Kingdom of Maynila as a puppet state ruled by Rajah Sulayman.
In 1570, Spanish explorers Martín de Goiti and Juan de Salcedo were ordered by Miguel López de Legazpi to sail from Cebu and became the first Europeans to reach Manila and Luzon. The Spanish immediately had disagreements with the native population after several months of warfare to defeat them and then negotiated peace with the Muslim leaders. On June 24, 1571 Legazpi declared Manila to be the new capital of the Spanish colony that was recognized by King Philip II of Spain as a "Distinguished and Ever Loyal City". During 1574 Manila was attacked by Chinese pirates led by Limahong and sacked before the Spanish repelled them and promoted the need for fortifications. The first was Fort Santiago and later Intramuros.
On August 13, 1898 after the Battle of Manila during the Spanish-American War, the Spanish surrendered Manila the U. S. flag was raised over Fort Santiago in Intramuros and in 1901 became the headquarters of the U. S. Army Philippine Division. During 1935–1941 General Douglas MacArthur lived in the penthouse of the Manila Hotel while serving as a military advisor to the Philippines.
After the Japanese attack on December 8, 1941 panic gripped Manila about Japanese air raids and landings in northern Luzon.
On December 24, 1941 Christmas Eve, General Douglas MacArthur ordered U. S. and Filipino military forces to begin withdrawing from Manila to defensive positions on the Bataan Peninsula. On December 26, 1941 declared an "Open City" by General MacArthur to make Manila a demilitarized in hopes of saving the city from being bombed or causing civilian casualties. Regardless of the demilitarized status, the Japanese bombed Manila on December 27, 1941. On January 2, 1942 the Japanese again bomb the city and begin occupying Manila.
Japanese missions against Manila
December 27, 1941–January 2, 1942
During the Japanese occupation of Manila, civilian expatriates were detained at Santo Thomas University and Bilibid Prison. The Philippine treasury was sacked and material wealth extracted for the Japanese war effort. By late 1944, as the Pacific War began to turn against the Japanese, Manila was within range of U. S. Navy (USN) carrier aircraft and U. S. Army Air Force (USAAF) heavy bombers.
American missions against Manila
September 21, 1944–1945
On January 9, 1945 the U. S. Army landing at Lingayen Gulf and began advancing southward towards Manila. Defending Japanese Army General Tomoyuki Yamashita ordered his troops to withdraw from Manila into the northern mountains of Luzon in hopes of fighting a protracted battle to tie down as many American forces and resist indefinitely. Despite Yamashita's order, the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) under the command of Japanese Navy Rear-Admiral Sanji
Iwabuchi opted to remain in the city and planned to defend ferociously with approximately
During the Battle of Manila an estimated 100,000 Filipinos, mostly civilians
died. This was one of the highest civilian casualties rates for urban combat in World War II, second only to the Battle of Stalingrad in Russia.
Feb 23, 1945
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