LETTER FROM VICTOR VICENCI: WRITTEN BY MAR VELASCO
For Chick Parsons:
FIL-AMERICAN IRREGULAR TROOPS
L U Z ON
GUERILLA INTELLIGENCE DIVISION
Sept. 22, 1944
Subject: BIRD’S-EYE VIEW OF THE GID IN ACTION
To : ALL MEMBERS OF MARKING’S GUERILLAS
Although greatly handicapped by lack of funds and proper equipment, and facilities, the GID set out to make a place for itself in the annals of modern military intelligence work, early this year, and within the short span of eight months, succeeded not only in building itself into full stature of usefulness but also in achieving what the GHQ admits as a commendable job. Armed with nothing better than the faith in the justice of their cause and in the ultimate victory of the forces championing that cause, our GID men brave the unrelenting fury of enemy terrorists in the performance of their duties. They enter enemy establishments and offices, rub elbows with enemy operatives and even dog enemy officers, to secure information that may hasten the destruction of the monster that ravages our land and is killing off our population. They work day and night, rain or shine. And they stop not to count the cost — or the possible reward.
Propaganda. – As might be expected, the handful of men – giants in
imagination, foresight, resourcefulness and resolution – who launched the GID into the world engaged in propaganda work hand-in-hand with their regular duties. After considerable cogitation as to where to secure materials and who would do the writing, they finally decided on using the first few sheets of paper furnished by themselves and one of them “crossed the Rubicon” on a borrowed typewriter. Though behind schedule, the paper came out as per instruction, and the people of Manila began receiving the “PATRIOT” with mixed emotions and reactions. The pro-Allies were happy; the pro-Japs, depressed and nervous; and the Japs themselves didn’t know what to do. They cast their dragnet and caught – nothing! Then they tried to counteract the beneficent, growing influence of the PATRIOT through the columns of their own paper – the TRIBUNE. They began to minimize their lies and, sometimes, publish the news in the TRIBUNE ahead of the PATRIOT, copies of which were posted in stonewalls, tree trunks, etc., that were easily accessible to the public. WHY POSTED? Because we lack funds for the printing of enough copies for the general public and, precisely, because it was intended to harass the enemy – and it did do just that! The police and enemy spies tried to pry off as many copies as they could and, as the PATRIOT increased its circulation so did the troubles of the police and spies. The GID HQ did not try to report on this propaganda work on the belief that somehow it would reach GHQ anyway. And it did! It received GHQ’s approval in the form of literary aid from Yay – war propaganda authority – who herself edited subsequent issues of our propaganda sheets.
Now for the bouquets: To Col. Vivi, for editing the first three propaganda comments (against his will, mind you); to Maj. Fil. Natividad, through whose initiative and ingenuity were able to secure a typewriter and a mimeograph (whose owner badly needed the money which we succeeded in paying in full only after we had thoroughly hated ourselves for having to break our promises several times due to lack of funds); to Mr. Puckyutan, for editing the news after the third issue and thus building the good-will of the paper; and of course, to the courageous lads who, after a short training for the job, successfully posted copies of the propaganda handbills everywhere, even as enemy sentries looked on – without any casualty.
The “Frivolous V”. – Many people have been roughly handled by Jap soldiery and civilians or brought to Fort Santiago for forming the letter V as they ran their fingers through their hair or as they held their cigars and cigarettes, whenever and wherever American prisoners passed by. Most of these people acted quite innocently, but the Japanese couldn’t see that. They dreaded the sign of the V, so much so that they attempted to eliminate everything that reminded them of it. But their activities succeeded only in fanning the fire into a conflagration. By (June of 1944?) the GID members took up the fight and launched the “Frivolous V” campaign, which consisted in writing t drawing, painting, carving, etching, etc., the letter V anywhere, everywhere and on anything — to tell the enemy that VICTORY for the Allied Forces was sure thing and that its own doom was fast approaching. The V soon blossomed in many parts of the city, some dangling from electric posts and telephone wires, others standing five feet high on street intersections, and still others were astraddle rooftops. The GID Command suspended the campaign to be resumed at the most opportune moment — when the V will be used to perform its most serious function: that of serving as guide for machines of destruction pointing to mi1itary objectives on the enemy line.
Sabotage. — In addition to this war of nerves against the enemy, the
GID members directed their attacks on its material resources. One member holding a responsible post in a Japanese shop is engaged in a daring job of casting machine spare parts into the river, thus causing repeated delays on enemy projects which extend into months. Another member, who requested permission to resign, was prevented from leaving his post until he had thrown away all spare parts in the bodega of the biggest company being used by the enemy. He died in the attempt, but he achieved his purpose — crippling the enemy. All the other laborers in the bodega were sent to the fort for questioning, but the enemy never got the right– our MAN! thus GID members are carrying on the fight deep into enemy territory, with
devastating effect on its war efforts and morale.
Contributions. – Rather than meet with indifference, not down right refusal, from outsiders, the GID members finance their various activities by pooling their pitiful resources together. Their contributions vary in quantity and quality, because the members are each free to give according to his means. A piece of dried fish, side by side with a cigar, a package of cigarette or pipe tobacco, a pill of’ quinine, etc., etc., usually find their way into their respective compartments in the re1ief pouch we send up to GHQ — to express sympathy (although in a feeble way) for our Brethren who must be suffering untold hardships in the mountains. For a while, it is true that the GID members are themselves beset with dangers everywhere twenty four hours a day, each of them has long ceased to consider his own welfare alone and thinks, instead, of the greater welfare of the brotherhood which his organization represents. Incidentally, what they are doing constitutes an appreciation of the good work the enlightened leadership of their Marking General and Yay, whom they lovingly call “Papa” and “Mama” (P.S. after the war, anybody calls me mama will get black eye). The GID considers itself as a unit that has won the approval and support of GHQ, not because of its activities and gifts (we blush to mention this) alone, but because of its spirit to do anything, everything, to help harass the enemy and of its demonstrated belief in loyalty to its enlightened leaders, which symbolizes their love for their fatherland.
By command of:
VICTOR VICENCI Col., G.I.D.
2nd Lt., G.I.D