Araw ng Kagitingan

The Day of Valor, Araw ng Kagitingan, commemorates the surrender of the combined Philippine resistance forces in Bataan against the invading Imperial Japanese forces on April 09, 1942.

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An estimated 76,000 soldiers and personnel surrendered and were the victims of the infamous 140-kilometer Bataan Death March.

Every act of remembrance is a struggle against forgetfulness; a task to give meaning to tragedy or victory.

But the more one puts up forms of remembrance, the more one finds so little left to remember. The farther one is away from the historical event, the more one finds himself a stranger, unable to connect, to feel the weight and significance of memory.

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Perhaps, this is why we observe the same rituals of commemoration over and over so as not to become strangers to our own history.


Photo: Mt. Samat Memorial Cross by Carl Flores Trinidad [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Dom writes for pay by day and writes for passion by night. He is a Japan major at the University of the Philippines. He’s fond of ramen and anime but not of nice people.

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