The liberation of Subic

Posted 11 months ago

On October 20, 1944, General Douglas McArthur landed his US forces at Palo, Leyte  keeping his “I shall return” promise to the Philippines  and officially beginning the liberation of the Philippines.

MacArthur Returns

MacArthur Returns and lands on Layte

By January 1945, the Japanese forces had virtually abandoned Subic Bay. The US 5th Air Force had dropped tons of bombs on Grande Island expecting stiffer resistance but received only light return fire from the small Japanese force remaining there.

General Tomoyuki Yamashita, the Japanese commander in the Philippines, had withdrawn his forces into defensive mountain positions outside Subic Bay.

On January 29, 1945, 40,000 American troops of the 38th Division and 34th Regimental Combat Team came ashore without resistance in San Antonio town in Zambales and advanced towards Subic Bay. They didn’t meet their first resistance until their attempt to cross the bridge spanning Kalaklan River near the Olongapo Cemetery. This was swiftly overcome and the town was liberated. The Japanese, however, had decided to destroy Olongapo upon leaving and left a great destruction.

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