Awaiting MacArthur's Return
World War II Guerrilla Resistance against the Japanese in the Philippines
Modern War Studies
Sales Date: October 7, 2022
- Published: October 2022
- Published: October 2022
Over the course of World War II, guerrillas from across the Philippines opposed Imperial Japan’s occupation of the archipelago. Although the guerrillas never possessed the combat strength to overcome the Japanese occupation on their own, they disrupted operations, kept the spirit of resistance alive, provided important intelligence to the Allies, and assumed frontline duties fighting the Japanese. By examining the organization, motivations, capabilities, and operations of the guerrillas, James Villanueva argues that the guerrillas were effective because Japanese punitive measures, along with a strong sense of obligation and loyalty to the United States, pushed most of the population to support the guerrillas. Unlike their predecessors opposing the Americans in 1899, the guerrillas during World War II benefited from the leadership of US and Filipino military personnel and received significant aid and direction from General Douglas MacArthur’s Southwest Pacific Area (SWPA) Headquarters, conducting one of the most effective and sophisticated resistance campaigns in World War II.
Awaiting MacArthur’s Return is the first comprehensive comparative analysis of the major World War II guerrilla groups across the Philippine Archipelago, providing a fuller picture of the nature of the war in the Southwest Pacific and revealing the extent to which the guerrilla movement affected operations for both Allied and Imperial Japanese forces.
Analyzing the organizational effectiveness of the guerrillas resisting the Japanese occupation of the Philippines, this book alternates narrative chapters with thematic chapters examining the guerrillas’ organization, logistics, administration, intelligence-gathering, and the support they received from Allied forces and provided the Allies in turn. Villanueva offers the most in-depth analysis of the guerrillas’ military organization and effectiveness in the context of existing theories of insurgency and counterinsurgency while using an extensive body of memoirs, archival guerrilla and US Army and Navy records, and translations of Japanese documents and interviews with Japanese officers.
List of Maps and Tables
List of Abbreviations
1. The Beginning of Resistance: Blackout and Establishment of Guerrilla Groups in the Philippines
2. The Allied Intelligence Bureau and the Philippine Regional Section
3. “Quarreling among Themselves”: SWPA and Guerrilla Conflicts
4. Setbacks and Successes: The Guerrillas from 1943 to 1944
5. Guerrilla Logistics and Administration
6. Guerillas Rising: The Guerrillas during the Liberation of the Philippines