Bool's Letter to US Army Requesting for Reconsideration, June 1946 - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

Bool's Letter to US Army Requesting for Reconsideration, June 1946

The Fil-American Irregular Troops or FAIT was organized by the retired US Army officer Hugh Straughn after the surrender of American forces to the Japanese in 1942. The FAIT would become a large organization with various units operating in many parts of Luzon, including Batangas. The 1st Batangas Regiment was one of these, supposedly founded by one Major Gutierrez in 1943. Upon the major’s capture by the Japanese, command of the unit was assumed by one Maximo Bool of Pallocan in the then-town of Batangas. In this document1, Bool, having already been informed by letter of the 1st Batangas Regiment’s non-recognition as an element of the Philippine Army in the service of the United States Armed Forces, requested for reconsideration.
Guerrilla Files jpeg

[p. 1]

UNITED STATES ARMY FORCES IN THE PHILIPPINES
FIL-AMERICAN IRREGULAR TROOPS
1st BATANGAS REGIMENT
BATANGAS UNIT
HEADQUARTERS, PALLOCAN, BATANGAS, BATANGAS

29 June 1946

SUBJECT

TO

: RE-INVESTIGATION OF GUERRILLA STATUS, REQUEST FOR

: Office of the Commanding General
   Hq. AFWESPAC, APO 707

1. On June 20, 1946, we received a communication from your office bearing the action taken on the status of our unit which sought recognition. The action taken then being unfavorable, contrary to our expectation, we, the undersigned, therefore are sending this letter for your kind consideration.

2. It is our honest belief that [the] decision rendered to us which we were made to understand, based on the reasons enumerated in the letter, is unjust and unfair, considering the fact that our efforts, our sacrifices and our fights against the enemy in which valuable lives of our men were sacrificed, were completely ignored. It is with this end in view that we would like to advance as an explanation which we earnestly hope will cause you to order a re-investigation of our case.

3. This unit was organized through the instructions of the founder of the original organization, Col. Hugh Straughn. Our appointments to the commissioned ranks were signed by Col. Hugh Straughn himself. Field orders were issued giving this unit certain missions. We believe that we have fulfilled the missions to the best of our ability notwithstanding the hardships, the sacrifices and the sufferings borne by us in the performance of these assigned tasks.

4. This unit was first organized in Batangas, Batangas in January, 1943, under the command of Atty. Mario Gutierrez, who in September of the same year surrendered to the enemy. The surrender of Atty. Gutierrez forced some members whose determination and fortitude were wanting to disband, lie low, or surrender. With a few men left, we resumed our activities and with these few men we soon grew up into what we have now — two (2) battalions.

[p. 2]

5. It is true that there were members who went home and stayed there for a week or so, but that was one of the tactics we employed to avoid detection by the enemy. It is but worthy to consider the fact that our men subsisted through their own toil. We did not bother our civilians to feed us and, therefore, it was but necessary for them to look over their farms while not in active combat. We did this in order not to get food from the civilians who, through the enemy’s foregoing activities, almost starved to death.

6. It is not true that we had not maintained a continuous activity against the enemy. On the contrary, we did. In fact and in truth, we raided enemy garrisons; we kept our men in constant training while not in combat; we disrupted enemy activities through our sabotage and counter-propaganda work and, above all, we kept high the people’s morale by the dissemination of news received through our hidden radio set — “Voice of Freedom,” “Voice of the Loyal Patriots” broadcasts from San Francisco. All the while, we kept our short-wave radio in activity.

7. Attached herewith is a brief detailed history of activities accomplished by this organization Also attached are true copies of commendation letters from the following:

a. Lt. Shirkey - S-2, 2nd Bn, 158th Regt, Liberating Forces of Batangas.
b. Lt. C. Garett - Ex. O. 382nd AAA AW Bn.
c. Capt P Lawrence - S-2, Base “R,” AFWESPAC (until Dec 1945)
d. Capt C Kayanan - S-2, Sub-Base “R,” APO 1009 (S-2 till the present time).
e. Mayor P Berberabe - Municipal Mayor, Batangas, Batangas.
f. Mother Dominica - Superior, Good Shepherd Convent, Batangas, Batangas.

8. In compliance with Ex. Order No. 86 of the Commonwealth of the Philippines to surrender arms, we have complied with that already on 2 Nov 1945, when we received the same order through Capt Lawrence, S-2, Base “R,” APO 73. We surrendered to him all our weapons, both serviceable and unserviceable.

9. Believing that fair play and justice will triumph above all, because you, who first sowed the seeds of Democracy in these islands, are here to revive and safeguard it; and believing further that the policy invoked by you in the recognition of deserving guerrillas is based on equality and justice, we humbly beseech your good office

[p. 3]

to cause a re-investigation of our case. In order to obtain the most authentic information regarding our organization, we request that whoever will handle our case will interview only those impartial observers who had direct knowledge of our activities. It will only be them that we can expect justice.

We shall be grateful for any consideration you will give on this matter.

FIL-AMERICAN IRREGULAR TROOPS
1st Batangas Regiment
Batangas Unit

BY:

[Sgd.] MAXIMO BOOL

8 Incls:

1 True Copy of Original Appointment
1 Brief History of the Outfit
6 True Copies of Commendation Letters


Notes and references:
1 “First Batangas Regt, FAIT,” File No. 110-60, online at the United States National Archives.

Related Posts