An Appeal to Town Mayors of Batangas from the Hunters-ROTC Guerrillas - Batangas History, Culture and Folklore

An Appeal to Town Mayors of Batangas from the Hunters-ROTC Guerrillas

[TRANSCRIPTION]

The Hunters-ROTC was one of the large guerrilla organizations that operated in southern Luzon during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines on to the liberation period. It had many units operating in the area, including the Province of Batangas. A composite roster submitted by the overall command of the Hunters-ROTC was recognized by the United States Army as elements of the Philippine Army in the service of the Armed Forces of the United States during the liberation period. In this page is a transcription1 of an appeal to all town Mayors of Batangas written by one Captain Genuino del Rosario on the eve of the landing on the beaches of Nasugbu of the US Eighth Army.
Guerrilla Files jpeg
[p. 1]

UNITED STATES PHILIPPINE ISLANDS FORCES
THE HUNTERS OR ROTC GUERRILLAS
CP: 2nd Bn, 49th Regt.

22 January 1945

SUBJECT
TO
: Appeal
: All Town Mayors

1. Quoted hereunder are a set of instructions from the Commanding Officer, HUNTERS or ROTC GUERRILLAS relayed for your information, guidance and appropriate action:

“The moment which all loyal Filipinos have been waiting for during the last three years has come! Soon, very soon, our troubles will be over and again, in cooperation with the Americans, we shall be running our government as we want to, live as true Filipinos and enjoy the fruits of our sweat, live in happiness and contentment.

“But, while soon we will be on our own again, and not have to worry about “zona,” “bimbang,” forced labor, spies, starvation diets, and racketeer prices, we still have a lot of work before us. For the Americans are still quite a distance from our areas. And before they arrive here with us, we have some work to do. I know that we all are primarily concerned with the protection of our own families and friends and constituents. The liberation of the Philippines, to many of us, is a means to end that we may again enjoy our way of life free from the constant fear of punishment for our wanting to live as Filipinos and not as Japanese stooges.

“So, for the common good, how about you and us doing a few things for our civilians. [The] Following are a few things which should be done for the common people who do not know what they have to do:

“1. Right now, hide all food from the Japs. Do not give to them, for if you do, you will be giving away the food of our people for this year to the enemy. Spend all your Jap money. They will be useless. When the guerrillas ask for anything, give it to them, but require receipts. You will be paid for the articles taken if you have receipts; otherwise, you many not receive any payment.

“2. Let us stop the Japanese from having contact with each other by destroying their means of communications, cutting their telephone wires, burning their buildings, capturing their messengers. If you capture any Jap, take his papers and documents and turn them over to the nearest ROTC camp. Deliver the Jap to the ROTC Commander.

“3. Keep away from the Japs! They may use you for labor troops, as screens, or they, knowing that we Filipinos are loyal to the Americans, may just shoot everybody as they withdraw from a place. When the Japs leave town, if the Americans have not arrived yet, run to town.

“4. Coordinate with the ROTC units in the town. They know what to do. If the Japs concentrate anywhere, stay away from them for as the Americans come up to fight them, you may be on the way and be shot.

“5. Now that our friends, the Americans, have not yet made any attempt to land on our shore, we should plan to evacuate the civilians from the coastal towns, specifically those in the Batangas Bay, Balayan Bay and Nasugbu Bay areas, and the Ternate-Naic coastline. They have to be taken to some point of safety, in places about four (4) kilometers from the beaches, and at a point which is safe from the fire of naval guns, like a point behind a hill or mountain. There are points like these in your areas. If in doubt, as the ROTC Commander in your town. Keep these civilians there until the American troops shall have occupied the town. This is necessary because when the Americans attempt to land, they will first bomb and strafe the beaches, then they will fire their heavy naval guns on it, and finally their artillery and infantry fire will be directed on the beaches and surrounding hills. After this bombardment, there will be no living animal and men left except those who might have taken cover in foxholes and behind

[p. 2]

hills. There will be no leaves on the trees. They will land! Do you want your townsmen in that area when the bombardment starts? Of course not, so right now, let’s plan out for the evacuation of civilians and, as soon as the ships are in sight, take them to points of safety. Get all physicians and nurses to attend to the civilians who may be wounded or shell-shocked.

“6. As soon as the Americans have landed, do not meet them. This is imperative! The Americans who are coming may not have seen a Filipino in their lives, and they cannot distinguish a Filipino from a Jap. They might take our people for Jap soldiers in civilian clothes or as covering screens for Jap soldiers. The Japs did this in Saipan, and the Americans who are coming are veterans from the SWPA fighting. As soon as the Americans arrive in town, that is the time for the Town Mayor to go and meet them and make the civilians go home.

“7. If the Japs escape to the hills, find out where they are. Report them to the ROTC Commander in the town. We will take care of them. We know what to do. Find out how many Japs there are, how many rifles, machine guns, and cannons they have and where, the name of the Commander, and where the men are from in Japan. If the Americans ask about where the Japs are, tell them, and guide them if asked to do so. Help the Americans as best as you can. We have to do all in our power to help them win this war in as fast a time as possible. When we help the Americans, we are actually helping ourselves, too.

“8. When the Japs stay in the mountains, watch them closely. Report all enemy movements to the ROTC Commander of the town. The Japs cannot stay in the mountains all the time. They will come down to get food. When they do, KILL THEM! If you cannot do so, report it to the ROTC Commander in your town. Use every farmer, every man and woman to report to you the movements of the Japs. You are the Town Mayor, your constituents will listen to you. If we do not do this, we will be the losers, so let us do it.

“Let’s get together on this! Let’s work together for the common good of our people. Let’s be sure to make our people survive this terrible war, so that we may be able to forget the hardships which the Japs inflicted upon us, and in victory, let us walk together hand in hand to a brighter day that is dawning!

“FOR A HAPPIER AND BRIGHTER PHILIPPINES IN VICTORY!”

[Sgd.] GENUINO DEL ROSARIO
Captain, Guer. Inf.
Commanding

Distribution:

1 – Lemery
1 – Taal
1 – San Luis
1 – Alitagtag
1 – Cuenca
1 – Bauan
1 – Mabini
1 – Batangas
1 – San Jose
1 – Ibaan
1 – Taysan
1 – File



Notes and references:
1 “C & G Co, 2nd Bn, 49th Regt, 47th Div, Hunters-ROTC,” file number 307-41, online at the United States National Archives.

Related Posts