Our leap back


    ‘We leap forward to June of 2020, finding a cop (and 17 others) nabbed for illegal cockfights, Philippine Congress being urged to seek Asian Parliamentary Association and Inter-Parliamentary Union support to denounce China and its expansion in the West Philippine Sea…’

    THE Leap Back – June 15, 1945” was Season 4 Episode 1 of “Quantum Leap” (the 1990s American sci-fi TV series exploring government experiment into time travel) where Admiral Al Calavicci (and Dr. Sam Beckett) must reunite a returning veteran with the woman he left due to WWII and prevent their double murder at the hands of a spurned suitor.

    In real life, that date was the culmination of the Battle of Bessang Pass: “On the 10th the 121st Infantry launched a final attack toward Bessang Pass, striking from the west and southwest, and the next day the Provisional Battalion began driving in from the north and northeast. Behind exceptionally close artillery support – the 122d Field Artillery placed concentrations as close as 50 yards in front of the guerrillas – the 121st Infantry overran the last organized defenses at Bessang Pass on 14 June and made contact east of the pass with the Provisional Battalion. On the same day the last opposition melted away before the 15th and 66th Regiments, south of the pass. Japanese remnants fled east along Route 4 toward Cervantes, pursued by elements of the 15th and 121st Infantry Regiments. Before dark on 15 June the 15th Infantry had secured the town, and on the next day the 66th Infantry put the finishing touches on the battle by setting up a roadblock across Route 393 about two and a half miles south of Cervantes. The last phase of the drive through Bessang Pass to Cervantes, covering 1-15 June, had cost the USAFIP(NL) approximately 120 men killed and 220 wounded.” [http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USA/USA-P-Triumph/USA-P-Triumph-28.html]

    The leap back to June 15, 1945 reveals, too, the Allied liberation of Labuan: “The decision to bring forward the OBOE VI operation, on the western side of Borneo, was a strategic surprise to the Japanese. The area around Brunei Bay facilitated rapid deployments and operational maneuver from the sea. General MacArthur set Z-Day as 10 June 1945. Naval and landing force command for the Brunei Bay amphibious assault, landing 33,500 personnel and 49,500 tons of supplies and equipment, was delegated to Rear Admiral Royal, and Major General George Wootten, commander of the Australian 9th Division. The Brunei Bay operation was, according to MacArthur, ‘flawlessly executed’…The Japanese lost 1,375 and 130 captured during this operation, although guerrillas probably killed another 1,800 throughout British Borneo.” [International Journal of Naval History, April 2016, Volume 13, Issue 1]

    We leap forward to June of 2020, finding a cop (and 17 others) nabbed for illegal cockfights, Philippine Congress being urged to seek Asian Parliamentary Association and Inter-Parliamentary Union support to denounce China and its expansion in the West Philippine Sea, and the coronavirus resurgence in China’s capital of Beijing. Moreover, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian said government should impose a stringent crackdown on erring big time business establishments, with POGOS not settling their 70-billion-peso tax arrears with the Bureau of Internal Revenue. [http://wingatchalian.com/news/govt-taxation-on-online-sellers-is-ill-timed-insensitive/;

    So why do the Terrans of today tolerate the vice lords, tax evaders and the shifty progenitor of pandemics? Why do the inheritors of the freedom-loving Rizal put up with the shenanigans of Limahong? Shall we jump to 75 years prior to find inspiration? Yes: “It seems to me that security rests on the best scientific research in every field that can be found anywhere in the world; on the most skilled people with the most original minds; on the healthiest people, mentally and physically, that we can produce; and on the best citizenry at home to back what we do both in the political field and the economic field and, if need be, in the military field.” [Eleanor Roosevelt, “My Day, June 16, 1945,” https://www2.gwu.edu/~erpapers/myday/displaydoc.cfm?_y=1945&_f=md00005]
    Or back to eight decades in the past: “Must we abandon all hope? Is our defeat final and irremediable? To those questions I answer? No! … The very factors that brought about our defeat may one day lead us to victory…This war is not limited to our unfortunate country…This is a world war. Mistakes have been made, there have been delays and untold suffering, but the fact remains that there still exists in the world everything we need to crush our enemies some day.” [Appeal of General Charles de Gaulle, BBC Radio, June 18, 1940; https://www.abmceducation.org/sites/default/files/activity/DeGaulle-Appeal.pdf]
    Return to the present and have your morale boosted by Ayala Museum’s Dioramas of Philippine History: Ang Pagsiklab ng Himagsikan Virtual Visits: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9KyN-1CW-Ew.

    Good. One more trip to yesterday: “The Japanese civilians had a pretty good share in the commission of abuses. Their hands were into almost everything. They commandeered automobiles. They compelled house owners to rent their buildings or houses to them or to their Filipino friends at very low rents. They took over almost all Filipino businesses. In Batangas, one Japanese tried to acquire all the ‘batels’ (sail boats) to have a monopoly of the water transportation business. At that time, Batangas ports were being extensively used for shipping to the Southern Islands on the batels. The Batangueños were so angry that, to show their oppositions to this form of robbery, it is said that a Japanese was tied to the mast of one of the batels and burned alive. Filipinos who refused to sell their business would be threatened; if this fails to scare them, the Japanese would get the business by force. They compelled the sale of the T.V.T. newspapers to them. If the intention was just to control the press they could have done so without compelling the sale to them. The Japanese civilians alleged that they had been appointed agents of the Japanese Army or Navy to take over businesses to bolster the war efforts.” [Diary Of Antonio De Las Alas, June 18, 1945]

    Leap forward to 2020 AD and the month of June is still filled with bad tidings for Rizal’s legatees, thousands daily infected with SARS-CoV-2, a different dicky-dodgy Northeast Asian tyranny bribing and bullying a silky route to third-rate power bracket. Also comes the Tax Man, haunting micro-enterprises while famine stalks the locked neighborhoods. Lords of Finance, choose to be Zacchaeus (“Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.”) or Matthew (sitting at the tax office who accepted Jesus’ invitation to become His follower). [Luke 19:1-10, Matthew 9:9] Otherwise, face Divine Wrath: “Lends at interest, and takes profit; shall he then live? He shall not live. He has done all these abominations; he shall surely die; his blood shall be upon himself.” [Ezekiel 18:13]

    We must now strive “to put right what once went wrong” and hope that this last time will be “the leap home.”