Sunday, September 29, 2013

Ted Cruz Compares His 21-Hour Speech To Bataan Death March

By Ben Steele, survivor*

One journalist was bolted alert toward the end of Senator Ted Cruz's (R-TX) 21-hour filibuster against the Affordable Care Act, when the Senator compared his tirade to enduring the infamous Bataan Death March.

Andrew Kaczynski of BuzzFeed on September 25th posted the video of the Senator making the comparison and wrote:
“Now in 31 minutes we will be concluded,” Cruz said. “I don’t want to miss the opportunity within the limited amount of time is imperative that I do, which is to thank the men and women who have endured this, this Bataan Death March. And I want to take a little bit of time to thank by name. I want to start by thanking the Republican floor staff and cloakroom. I want to thank Laura Dove for her fairness, for her dealing with crises and passions on all sides and for her effectiveness in the job. And this is an interesting occurrence to occur so early in her job and I thank her for her service.”
The Bataan Death March occurred in 1942 after the American defeat at the hands of the Japanese in the Philippines. U.S. government totals say 12,000 American troops were forced to march up the east coast of the Philippines to Camp O’Donnell, which would serve as a prisoner of war camp. Many died on the way because of beatings, executions, and malnutrition.
For those of you who share Mr. Kaczynski's indignation, you can educate the Senator about the inhumanity and horrors of the Bataan Death March by emailing him directly HERE.

*We have a number of signed poster copies of Mr. Steele's painting of the Death March available for those who donate $100 (tax deductible) or more to support our research. You may want to purchase one to send one to Senator Cruz. Email us.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

POW/MIA Recognition Day Events

Above, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey deliver remarks at the Pentagon's National POW/MIA Recognition Day ceremony September 20, 2013.

HERE you can listen to or read the reflections and advice of Edward Jackfert of West Virginia who was a POW of Japan where he was a slave laborer for Mitsui Corporation, Nippon Steel, Showa Denko, and Nisshin Flour. In 2010, Mr. Jackfert participated in the first American POW Friendship trip to Japan. He has worked tirelessly to create the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor Museum in Wellsburg to preserve the history of the defense of the Philippines and to teach the lessons of war.
UPDATE: Read here a moving POW/MIA ceremony in Wellsburg, West Virginia at the Brooke County Public Library. The Library houses an extensive collection of books, documents, and artifacts on defense and fall of the Philippines and the fate of the POWs of Japan. Mr. Jackfert was the keynote speaker.

Friday, September 20, 2013

2013 National POW/MIA Recognition Day

For more information Click here



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Our country endures because in every generation, courageous Americans answer the call to serve in our Armed Forces. They represent the very best of the human spirit, stand tall for the values and freedoms we cherish, and uphold peace and security at home and around the globe. Today, we pay tribute to the service members who have not returned from the battlefield, we stand beside their families, and we honor those who are held captive as prisoners of war. We will never forget their sacrifice, nor will we ever abandon our responsibility to do everything in our power to bring them home.

America remains steadfast in our determination to recover our missing patriots. Our work is not finished until our heroes are returned safely to our shores or a full accounting is provided to their loved ones. We must care for the men and women who have served so selflessly in our name, and we must carry forward the legacy of those whose fates are still unknown. Today, and every day, we express our profound appreciation to our service members, our veterans, our military families, and all those who placed themselves in harm's way to sustain the virtues that are the hallmarks of our Union.

On September 20, 2013, the stark black and white banner symbolizing America's Missing in Action and Prisoners of War will be flown over the White House; the United States Capitol; the Departments of State, Defense, and Veterans Affairs; the Selective Service System Headquarters; the World War II Memorial; the Korean War Veterans Memorial; the Vietnam Veterans Memorial; United States post offices; national cemeteries; and other locations across our country. We raise this flag as a solemn reminder of our obligation to always remember the sacrifices made to defend our Nation.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 20, 2013, as National POW/MIA Recognition Day. I urge all Americans to observe this day of honor and remembrance with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this nineteenth day of September, in the year of our Lord two thousand thirteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-eighth.


Friday, September 06, 2013


Sunday, September 8th
3:00 PM
Corner of 1st Avenue and Oak Street
Maywood, Illinois

In October of 1941, 89 men from Maywood, Illinois left the United States for the Philippine Islands with Company “B” of the Army’s 192nd Tank Battalion.

Only 43 would return from the War.

They had arrived in Philippine Islands on November 20, 1941 — Thanksgiving Day—and were stationed at Clark Field on Luzon, 60 miles to the north of Manila. On December 7, 1941, Japan attacked Pearl Harbor in Hawaii and Clark Field in the Philippines.

At Clark Field, Robert Brooks, of D Company became the first American “tanker” killed in WWII. He is likely also the first African-American killed in the War. Brooks Field at Fort Knox, Kentucky is named in his honor.

The 192nd Tank Battalion fought for four desperate months against the invading Japanese. Exhausted, sick, starving, and out of ammunition, they were surrendered by their commanding officers on April 9, 1942. On the infamous 65-mile Bataan Death March, the soldiers of Maywood made up the largest number of POWs from a single American town.

>Maywood’s Bataan Day has been held every year since 1942, on the Second Sunday in September<

As POWs of Japan, the Maywood men endured indescribable deprivation, abuse, and degradation. Many became slave laborers for prominent Japanese companies. One that used American POW slave labor was Nippon Sharyo, which manufactured the engines for the Thai-Burma Death Railway. The company still manufactures rolling stock on the same site that it did during the War. Nippon Sharyo passenger cars now cast daily shadows on the Maywood Veterans Memorial Park. A METRA (Chicago area) commuter rail track runs on one edge of the Park. METRA is a major client of Nippon Sharyo. American tax incentives and METRA contracts were used to encourage Nippon Sharyo to build manufacturing facilities in Illinois. The company is planning to benefit from upcoming high-speed rail contracts.

Nippon Sharyo has never acknowledged nor apologized to the POWs it used as slave labor.

Click here for more information on the memorial events and celebration.

Contact Information:
Col. Richard A. McMahon, Jr. (USA, Ret.), President
Phone: (708) 366-8761
Website URL: