Thursday, April 20, 2006

An old Palawan Post card- christmas 1945!

Some Old views of my hometown - all taken from the Archives of the US Government in the public domain of the National Archives.

Picture of Canigaran Beach near what is now WESCOM as I can see from the mountains in the distance beyond.
The postcard was made for GI's and Airmen stationed on the Island to send back home to famlies in the U.S.
Honda Bay is in the background.

In another picture below was the more common scene at this beach with over 40,000 US troops mostly male - on the island.
Malaria - rampant at that time kept them close to the Base and they seldom really mixed with locals over fears of TB which was another problem.

The Island was major base for pounding Japanese forces in Dutch Harbor and other parts of the Borneo Area it was supposed to be used as staging area for then British Borneo and Brunei or what is now present day.

However Palawan was not as Idelic as pictured for thousands who suffered under Japanese Occupation led by former Governor Hegino Mendoza, who led the resistance on the Island to the Japanese. He was later beheaded not far from where these pictures were taken according to reports that reached his family later after liberation.

The Japanese britality was not only for the locals - the American POW's who were in violation of the Geneva Convention brought to Puerto Princesa were later executed inside a air raid shelter.

Some did escape to tell the tale and it led to the rescue at cabantatuan or the great raid recently made into a movie.

The picture on the right is the mass grave near the air raid shalter that the remians of the massacred POW's were recovered from while above is the gate of the Old Philippine Constabulary camp the Japanese made into the prison camp and Kempetai HQ.


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