Daily Archives: April 7, 2015


April 07, 2015


On April 7, 1942, The Japanese forces launched a drive into the center, penetrated into flanks held by the 22nd and 23rd regiments of the 21st Division, captured Mt. Samat .

The forces later continued its advance on the 2nd line of defense and outflanked all of II Corps. The USAFFE reserves counter- attacked to no avail, only the 57th Infantry gained any ground, soon lost.The Japanese artillery took its toll on the USAFFE forces.

After the failure of their first attack against Bataan, the Japanese general headquarters sent strong artillery forces to the Philippines in order to smash the American fortifications. They had 190 artillery pieces, which included bigger guns like 150 mm cannons and the rare Type 45 240 mm howitzer, with Bataan being its only known campaign.

The 1st Artillery headquarters under Maj. Gen. Kineo Kitajima, who was a known authority on IJA artillery, also moved to the Philippines along with the main forces to command and control these artillery units.

Also, the Japanese high command reinforced Gen. Homma’s 14th Imperial Army and toward the end of March, the Japanese forces prepared and have used more than 300 guns for the final assault.



April 07, 2015


Los Angeles – Another Filipino World War II bites the dust.

Ben G. Falloria was born on December 18, 1923 in Botolan,,Zambales. He was an elementary school graduate. He was 91 years old.

He was a founding member and was an active member of the Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV) until his health failed and began off from JFAV activities.

He joined the Magsaysay Guerillas of the Western Luzon Guerilla Forces (WLGF) in Botolan during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines in 1942.

WLGF Magsaysay Guerillas

The Botolan military district became a special regiment under the command of guerilla leader Ramon Magsaysay who later became the defense secretary under the President Elpidio Quirino . And later was elected as the President of the Philippines in 1953.

He fought during an encounter with the Japanese In Bucao River, Botolan where 150 Japanese were killed. He was twice wounded in October 1942 and in December 1944

Although he receieved his lump sum, he continued fighting for his fellow veterans who was denied of their lump sum and for recognition and benefits with the JFAV>
He died on March 12, 2015 and was buried last March 29, 2015 .

We salute your Sir Ben Faloria. The gratitude of a grateful nation be with you.


The Fog Of War and Smoke Of Battle

April 07, 2015

The Fog Of War and Smoke Of Battle

By Arturo P. Garcia

A plan is a set of action made for the purpose of attaining an objective. Thus, a military plan or an operational plan is designed to attain a military objective.

That makes a plan always a subjective endeavor. When planners make a plan, they have to see to it that all the circumstances are factored in. Thus there is no such a prefect plan on the very onset. As always, a plan can be judged after the fact. That is after its implementation. After the battle.

In any game or war, the plans or the planners are always judge after the mission plan is attained or if it failed. And as always, in victory every one is hailed a hero, while in defeat, the planner is an orphan.

To judge a plan that it is doomed from the start or a failure therefore is always subjective. But it looks objective because it is being judged after the implementation and has the benefit of the facts.

There is where the non-military persons err. It is easy to speak about the failure of a plan if you are a non-military person or a person without any military background. Even if you rely of an expert advice from military experts, they will not be in the best position to judge a plan if it is a failure or not.

The Churchill’s plan or the Gallipoli Plan was to open up a third front during the First World War, and break the monotony and the stalemate at the Western Front . His plan to take Gallipoli or Suvla Bay in Turkey in 1915 -16 was judged to be a great disaster by some military historians. But looking back, was judge otherwise as a brilliant plan but short on implementation.

The British forces were pinned down by the Turkish forces led by Colonel Kemal Ataturk in the bloody peninsula for more than six months until the Allied forces were forced to withdraw. The British suffered 250,00 casualties during the six months campaign.

Churchill was forced to resign from the British Admiralty. But the British learned a lot in the Gallipoli Operations in conducting landing and amphibious operations that helped them in the future.

This saved lives in the evacuation of Dunkirk that saved the 380,000 British and Allied forces in World War II and the Allied invasions of North Africa, Italy and in France later in that world war. That began from a failed plan that made future plans perfect.

Even the Operation Market-Garden of Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery during World War II was judged as a failure by many historians because it produced “ a bridge to far” with the loss of the 1st British Airborne Brigade. The brigade lost 90% of its men in holding the bridge at Arnhem, Holland.

But in the hindsight, the first allied airborne operation-Operation Market-Garden was a success. It became the model for more successful airborne operations later .

I disagree with at least two investigating bodies- The PNP Board of Inquiry (BOI) and the Senate that judged the SAF Plan on the Mamasapan or the OPLAN EXODUS as “ flawed from the start.” It is more a political decision than a military one.

A columnist was right in calling the reports as “emotional and being played for the crowd. “I feel it is unfair to judge a military plan because it has a lot of entanglements. That makes the Senate a platform for early politicking and nitpicking on the people who risk their lives in the field. It is easy for them to judge because it is easy to judge from the bench that from the fields.

A famous military writer German General Carl Von Clausewitz calls this situation “the fog of war.”

The great Russian General Konev who defeated the Nazis in World War II calls this “fog of war” blinding as “ the smoke of battle.

He said, “Thus, we cannot trust the reports. We cannot even trust the binoculars as we watched the battle.

We may be deceived by what we can see. We have to wait until the smoke from the artillery and air bombardment subside. We can see clearly then the result of the fight.”



April 04, 2015


By Arturo P. Garcia

After more than 18 years and months of negotiations in Lausanne, Switzerland finally the United States with the help of other four major world powers have made peace with Iran.

The focus of the talks is the nuclear capability of Iran that the United States wanted to limit while Iran’s interest is the end of the costly embargo or economic sanctions.

Iran traded the capability to build nuclear arms for the end of sanctions and the won the capability to use nuclear power for peace use and its economic development.

In the Philippines, the MILF also made the supreme sacrifice of abandoning its demand for independence that it advance for more than 45 years of armed struggle. Finally, the MILF had accepted regional autonomy or self-rule under the Philippine authority in 2012.

The MILF is pushing towards the passage of the Basic Bangsa Moro Law (BBL) to be approved by the PH Congress that will provide for its self-rule. On the other hand it will be decommissioning its armed forces and turning its once ”revolutionary organization” into a political party.

On both instances, in the United States, the opposition party-the Republicans oppose the negotiations with Iran and wanted a war against Iran ‘ a military power” in the Middle East. And a threat to America.

In fact, 47 GOP Senators wrote the Iranian authority saying” they will not honor any treaty or negotiations with Iran.” A legislative overreach against US President Obama.

The same can said about the Philippines, Some Senators who harbor presidential ambitions are opposing the BBL calling it a deal” arms for BBL.” Even some goes as far calling for war against the MILF. As if more than 150,000 Filipinos perished during the more than4 5 years civil war in Mindanao.

As usual, it is easier to call “the dogs of war” than call for peace. But it is better to be a peacemaker, or to be a children of God and be blessed.

The real test for a negotiation or an agreement is its implementation.



April 06, 2015


It was clear that on April 6, 1942 , over the course of the next three days (Good Friday to Easter Sunday, 1942), the Japanese 65th Brigade and 4th Division spearheaded the main attack at the left flank of II Corps. Everywhere along the line, the American and Filipino defenders were driven back by Japanese tanks and infantry.

Based on his two prior attempts, General Homma had estimated that the final offensive would require a week to breach the Orion-Bagac Line and a month to liquidate two final defense lines he believed had been prepared on Bataan.

When the opening attack required just three days, he pushed his forces on 6 April to meet expected counterattacks head on. The Japanese launched a drive into the center, penetrated into flanks held by the 22nd and 23rd regiments of the 21st Division, captured Mt. Samat and outflanked all of II Corps.

Counterattacks by the U.S. Army and Philippine Scout regulars held in reserve were futile; only the 57th Infantry gained any ground, soon lost.