- Bataan Death March survivor shares story
- The Bataan Death March and the 66-Year Struggle for Justice
Though they ultimately surrendered, their stubborn defense of the peninsula was a significant propaganda victory for the United States and proved that the Imperial Japanese Army was not the invincible force that had rolled over so many other colonial possessions in the Pacific.
It was against this backdrop that the Bataan Death March—a name conferred upon it by the men who had endured it—began. The forced march took place over some two weeks after Gen.
Bataan Death March survivor shares story
The siege of Bataan was the first major land battle for the Americans in World War II and one of the most-devastating military defeats in American history. The force on Bataan, numbering some 76, Filipino and American troops, is the largest army under American command ever to surrender. Bataan Death March. Article Media.
The Bataan Death March and the 66-Year Struggle for Justice
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Lead-up to the march Within hours of their December 7, , attack on the American naval base at Pearl Harbor , Hawaii , the Japanese military began its assault on the Philippines, bombing airfields and bases, harbours and shipyards. Prisoners received harsh punishments for any infraction, one of the most brutal of these being the policy of beheading them for taking a sip of water.
Rather than force him to give up, these things made Bollich fight for life even more.
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Witnessing his comrades falling beside him and watching his own body waste away to ninety pounds, he never yielded his will to survive. After completing the march, he remained a prisoner of war, first at an old Philippine army base, then in another camp at Mukden, Manchuria. He relates his imprisonment in detail, from starvation and torture to digging their own comrades graves in the hot sun, without hats or water. Through it all, he remained courageous and hopeful that he would one day make it back home.