Japanese Period

Japanese Period Background The Japanese period is known as the era with the most brutalities in Philippine history. Unlike our previous capturers, the Japanese had no shame in hiding the cruelty that they imposed on the Filipino people. With their aim of capturing the Philippines in a p of 50 days, they did not hold back on the meaner of getting what they wanted. No one could escape the torture and hardships, and some could not even escape death. The Japanese had motives. They wanted the Filipinos to stray from the western culture, and become part of the east-Asia co prosperity sphere.
They wanted a complete reformation of the people, for them to forget about their materialistic ways and to focus on vocational education and love of labor. Whenever someone would go against what they wanted, they would result to imprisonment and torture. They had no mercy for those that they suspected were against them. Conditions of the Prison The Kemp-ATA, or the Japanese military police would usually pick up Filipinos on the streets or in their houses, and throw them in prison cells either in Fort Santiago, in Blind prison, or in any compound that the Japanese have taken over.
Some accounts say that the Japanese would keep them in small rooms, with nothing to do. Whenever they would look out the window, all they could see were ill-fed and unhappy Filipinos roaming the streets. Everyday, they would do the same things, and they would be fed tasteless and inadequate food twice a day. Most times, it’s Just boiled vegetables and rice. Sometimes, they would add fish to the prisoners’ food, but only the heads and the parts that they have thrown in the garbage. One source told his story of being kept in a hospital by the Japanese.

He mentioned that two garbage dumpsters were located right outside the building where they were staying in, so flies would come in thousands each day. Whenever they would close their eyes, after about five minutes, the bed would be covered with flies, literally making a black blanket. Another source, quoted below, wrote his accounts of torture and hardships in his memoir, and what he experienced in the cell that he stayed in: “After a pause of a few minutes, I felt the searing Jerks of slivers being extracted.
Minutes later, I could not remember how long, I regained consciousness. I was shivering and wet lying in a pool of water mixed with blood, semi-digested food, excrement and urine. The smell was terrible. I must have moved my bowels, vomited and urinated in my unconscious state. ” The Japanese didn’t care about the condition of each prisoner. They would Just leave them there, bruised and unconscious, until the next water cure session.
Some rooms can only occupy a limited number of people if they allocate a bed for each person; therefore, what the Japanese did was to fit about 70 men inside one empty room, where the prisoners would sit in a squatting position. Most of the rooms couldn’t have a bathroom; so instead, the Japanese would provide the prisoners squatting Rules Inside the Prison There were no exact rules as to what should and shouldn’t be done inside the prison cell, but the Filipinos were smart enough to know what the Japanese didn’t like and what they capable of.
Whenever a Filipino is captured, he is tied up and beaten, sometimes until he is unconscious, then he will be brought to a prison cell, where he will stay indefinitely and will continue to be tortured. Almost everyday, they will be questioned and tortured until they give an answer that would satisfy the Japanese en watching over them. Of course, like in any prison, no one was allowed to leave the facility. If anyone attempted to leave, they would be beaten and tortured to death.
Family members were not allowed to visit them, except on April 29, when the emperor would celebrate his birthday and is considered a special holiday for the Japanese. They were not allowed to leave their cells, unless they were told to do so. Even bathing was limited to once a week, sometimes once every two weeks if they were unlucky. In 1941, a new Blind prison was available for use of the Japanese. Upon entering he facility, there was a standard procedure followed to accommodate the new prisoners: 1 . The carpets (bio-data) were taken and supplemented by fingerprinting 2.
Heads of prisoners will be shaved 3. Clothes will be deposited for safekeeping, and replaced with a uniform 4. Medical examination of physical condition of the prisoners, and giving of immunization shots 5. Photos are taken with a prison number tag 6. Brigade assignments are issued. The new Blind was seen as a chance to live anew, and the prisoners noticed that the prison officials were more lenient than the ones in the old Blind facility and the nest in Fort Santiago. Rights Human rights were non-existent during the time of the Japanese.
The torture methods were so inhumane that some prisoners felt like they were being treated like animals. They were not allowed to speak or do what they wanted, they weren’t even allowed leave their prison cells unless they were told to do so. There was no regard for human life, at least for those who were imprisoned and tortured. Illustration of the water cure method of torture The methods that the Japanese used to get answers from the Filipinos were severe and barbaric. The water cure was the most used method for prisons.
The prison officials would dip the head of the prisoner in a tub of water, or a wet material is placed on top of the nose and mouth of a prisoner until he starts gasping for air. They would then ask questions, and if they don’t get a “satisfactory’ answer, they would repeat the process. In the case of a prisoner drowning, they would immediately untie him and place him face down on a barrel. The Prison guards would then roll the barrel back and forth like a rocking chair to remove the water from the poor prisoners stomach and lungs.
Then the process will continue once and striking with a baton or a slab of wood. Reasons for Imprisonment Most of the prisoners during the time of the Japanese were accused of being part of guerrillas. This was the main trigger for the Japanese to capture people in the streets or in their homes because they didn’t want any secret anti-Japanese organizations to plan revolts, as well as keep in the Filipinos under the influence of the Americans. Although they captured many accused Filipinos, they were not able to fully and completely silence the guerilla groups.

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