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New book recounts tragic tale of MacArthur and the Battle of Manila

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Seventy-five years ago, toward the end of World War II, Gen. Douglas MacArthur was plan-ning to retake the Philippine capital city of Manila—a key step in fulfilling his pledge to return to the Southeast Asian nation and liberate the islands.

MacArthur was convinced that the Japanese would abandon the city, and he even planned a victory parade down Dewey Boulevard.

Japanese Gen. Tomoyuki Yamashita had indeed planned to engage the Americans elsewhere on Luzon, but one of his naval commanders in Manila was determined to fight to the end.

The first American units arrived at the outskirts of the city on Feb. 3, 1945. Three days later, MacArthur declared that Manila had fallen—but he was mis-taken. Japanese resistance in the heart of the city flared into weeks of intense block-by-block and even room-by-room fighting.

Japanese forces brutalized the civilian population during the monthlong battle, committing atrocities on par with the Rape of Nanking, and the city was destroyed.

This coming Tuesday, author James Scott will recount this tragic tale in a Lemnitzer Lecture at the General Gor-don R. Sullivan Conference and Event Center in Arlington, Virginia.

After the presentation, Scott will sign copies of his award-winning book Rampage: MacArthur, Yamashita, and the Battle of Manila.

Information on the event can be found on the Association of the U.S. Army website by clicking here.

Two other Lemnitzer Lectures have also been scheduled for the months ahead.

L. Scott Lingamfelter will discuss his forthcoming AUSA book, Desert Redleg: Artillery Warfare in the Gulf War, on May 12, and Donald Snedeker will talk about The Blackhorse in Vietnam: The 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment in Vietnam and Cambodia, 1966 –1972 on July 22.

Details for those lectures are among the listings on AUSA’s Meetings and Events page.

Please visit www.ausa.org/books to preorder copies of Desert Redleg and The Blackhorse in Vietnam.