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Conference Paper: The Complexities of Collaboration and Colonialism: Claro M. Recto’s Bid for ‘Real’ Philippine Independence, 1944

TitleThe Complexities of Collaboration and Colonialism: Claro M. Recto’s Bid for ‘Real’ Philippine Independence, 1944
Authors
Issue Date2013
PublisherDepartment of History and Sociology, University of Konstanz.
Citation
The 2013 International Workshop on 'Writing the War in Asia, 1937-45', University of Konstanz, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, 16 October 2013. How to Cite?
AbstractThe Second World War posed complicated dilemmas in terms of loyalty for political leaders in countries that had been colonized by Western powers and were then occupied by Japan. Where should their loyalties lie? And how should they best protect their own countries’ interests? From the 1930s onward, Japanese politicians sought to win over nationalist forces in Asian countries which had been colonized by European states, presenting Japan as the guardian of pan-Asian interests, seeking to drive out Western imperialists and restore Asia to solely Asian rule. In every country occupied by Japan, some politicians and many among the general population were prepared to collaborate with the new overlords, while others joined the resistance movements which fought against Japanese rule. When the war ended, extremely few Asians were penalized for mere acquiescence in Japanese occupation, while many of those leaders who had joined Japanese-sponsored governments later enjoyed successful political careers. Despite pressure upon the Philippines from the American government, which had compiled wartime dossiers on prominent Filipinos charged with collaboration, individuals the Americans subsequently arrested, ultimately very few who stood trial were convicted, and of those almost all were subsequently amnestied. Prominent among those accused of collaboration was the Filipino politician Claro M. Recto (1890-1960), a lawyer, poet, writer, and former Philippine Supreme Court justice. During the 1930s he served as both minority and majority floor leader in the Philippine Senate, switching parties in the mid-1930s in nationalist protest against the economic and military terms on which, under the 1932 Hare-Hawes Cutting Act, the United States was prepared to grant the Philippines independence. In 1934 Recto presided over the convention which drafted the new Philippine constitution. In 1941 Recto, who had spent some years in private practice, won re-election to the Philippine Senate. In January 1942 he was among those thirty-two leading Filipino politicians who accepted a Japanese invitation to cooperate. From 1942 to 1943 Recto served as Commissioner for Education, Health and Public Welfare, and then as Minister of State for Foreign Affairs in the Laurel government. In the first position, he was responsible for many of the educational and cultural policies that sought to promote a sense of Philippine national identity. At the end of the war Recto was accused of collaboration with Japan, arrested, and charged with treason. Rather than taking advantage of the subsequent amnesty proclamation of President Manuel Roxas, Recto insisted on fighting his case in the courts, pleading not guilty and winning acquittal after proving that he had maintained connections with the underground resistance movement.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/198361

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorRoberts, PMen_US
dc.date.accessioned2014-06-25T03:05:21Z-
dc.date.available2014-06-25T03:05:21Z-
dc.date.issued2013en_US
dc.identifier.citationThe 2013 International Workshop on 'Writing the War in Asia, 1937-45', University of Konstanz, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, 16 October 2013.en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/198361-
dc.description.abstractThe Second World War posed complicated dilemmas in terms of loyalty for political leaders in countries that had been colonized by Western powers and were then occupied by Japan. Where should their loyalties lie? And how should they best protect their own countries’ interests? From the 1930s onward, Japanese politicians sought to win over nationalist forces in Asian countries which had been colonized by European states, presenting Japan as the guardian of pan-Asian interests, seeking to drive out Western imperialists and restore Asia to solely Asian rule. In every country occupied by Japan, some politicians and many among the general population were prepared to collaborate with the new overlords, while others joined the resistance movements which fought against Japanese rule. When the war ended, extremely few Asians were penalized for mere acquiescence in Japanese occupation, while many of those leaders who had joined Japanese-sponsored governments later enjoyed successful political careers. Despite pressure upon the Philippines from the American government, which had compiled wartime dossiers on prominent Filipinos charged with collaboration, individuals the Americans subsequently arrested, ultimately very few who stood trial were convicted, and of those almost all were subsequently amnestied. Prominent among those accused of collaboration was the Filipino politician Claro M. Recto (1890-1960), a lawyer, poet, writer, and former Philippine Supreme Court justice. During the 1930s he served as both minority and majority floor leader in the Philippine Senate, switching parties in the mid-1930s in nationalist protest against the economic and military terms on which, under the 1932 Hare-Hawes Cutting Act, the United States was prepared to grant the Philippines independence. In 1934 Recto presided over the convention which drafted the new Philippine constitution. In 1941 Recto, who had spent some years in private practice, won re-election to the Philippine Senate. In January 1942 he was among those thirty-two leading Filipino politicians who accepted a Japanese invitation to cooperate. From 1942 to 1943 Recto served as Commissioner for Education, Health and Public Welfare, and then as Minister of State for Foreign Affairs in the Laurel government. In the first position, he was responsible for many of the educational and cultural policies that sought to promote a sense of Philippine national identity. At the end of the war Recto was accused of collaboration with Japan, arrested, and charged with treason. Rather than taking advantage of the subsequent amnesty proclamation of President Manuel Roxas, Recto insisted on fighting his case in the courts, pleading not guilty and winning acquittal after proving that he had maintained connections with the underground resistance movement.en_US
dc.languageengen_US
dc.publisherDepartment of History and Sociology, University of Konstanz.en_US
dc.relation.ispartofInternational Workshop on 'Writing the War in Asia, 1937-45'en_US
dc.titleThe Complexities of Collaboration and Colonialism: Claro M. Recto’s Bid for ‘Real’ Philippine Independence, 1944en_US
dc.typeConference_Paperen_US
dc.identifier.emailRoberts, PM: proberts@hku.hken_US
dc.identifier.authorityRoberts, PM=rp01195en_US
dc.description.naturelink_to_OA_fulltext-
dc.identifier.hkuros229417en_US
dc.publisher.placeGermanyen_US

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