Last Stand on Bataan

The Defense of the Philippines, December 1941–May 1942

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About the Book

In the opening days of World War II, a joint U.S.-Filipino army fought desperately to defend Manila Bay and the Philippines against a Japanese invasion. Much of the five-month campaign was waged on the Bataan Peninsula and Corregidor Island. Despite dwindling supplies and dim prospects for support, the garrison held out as long as possible and significantly delayed the Japanese timetable for conquest in the Pacific. In the end, the Japanese forced the largest capitulation in U.S. military history. The defenders were hailed as heroes and the legacy of their determined resistance marks the Philippines today. Drawing on accounts from American and Filipino participants and archival sources, this book chronicles these critical months of the Pacific War, from the first air strikes to the fall of Bataan and Corregidor.

About the Author(s)

Historian Christopher L. Kolakowski has spent his career preserving and interpreting military history from 1775 to the present. He lives in Norfolk, Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Christopher L. Kolakowski
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 220
Bibliographic Info: 39 photos, 23 maps, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2016
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7489-9
eISBN: 978-1-4766-2492-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments vii

Introduction 1

1. “The war for all practical purposes is on in the Orient” 3

2. Ringing Telephones and Radios 16

3. Days of Decision 30

4. Evacuation 44

5. Abucay 71

6. Taste of Victory 98

7. “I shall return” 127

8. End on Bataan 148

9. The Fall of Corregidor 166

Epilogue 179

Appendix I. USAFFE Order of Battle, December 8, 1941 183

Appendix II. The Battlefields and Participants After May 1942 185

Chapter Notes 189

Bibliography 203

Index 205

Book Reviews & Awards

“Through extensive research, Kolakowski has adeptly provided a book on military history not only form the tactical and operational level, but also has shown, from a strategic level, how the last stand at Bataan and Corregidor were vital in the final Allied victory in the Pacific”—On Point.