A derelication of duty : Douglas MacArthur and the development of the Philippine military


Was Douglas MacArthur directly responsible for the ineffectiveness of the Philippine military during the Philippine campaign of 1941-1942? This question is still a point of debate among historians. During the six years that preceded the United States entrance into the Second World War, the government of the Commonwealth of the Philippines attempted to implement a national defense plan devised by Douglas MacArthur. The end goal of MacArthur's plan was the creation of a professional Filipino military force that would be able to adequately defend the Philippines against invasion. From late 1935 until mid 1941 , MacArthur served as the official United States military adviser to the Commonwealth government. When war with Japan occurred in late 1941 the Philippine military was in dismal shape.

The argument that MacArthur was directly responsible for the ineffectiveness of the Philippine military in the Philippine campaign of 1941-1942 is strongly supported by historical evidence of events that occurred during the creation, development, and fielding of the Philippine military in 1934-1941. An investigation of historical evidence shows that MacArthur is responsible for making a series of errors that caused rampant financial problems and an inadequate training program. These factors directly contributed to the ineffectiveness of Philippine military units during the 1941-1942 campaign.


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Thesis Completion



Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)


College of Arts and Humanities

Degree Program



Arts and Humanities -- Dissertations, Academic;Dissertations, Academic -- Arts and Humanities







Access Status

Open Access

Length of Campus-only Access


Document Type

Honors in the Major Thesis

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