Jan 28 2023


All Day

Retaking of Clark Air Field

Retaking of Clark Air Field / Mabalacat City, Pampanga

When the war broke out on 08 December 1941, the installation in Clark Airfield was among the first target of raids by Taiwan-based Japanese bombers that destroyed more than half of the U.S. Army’s aircraft in East Asia, one of which is B-17’s. Later on, Clark was evacuated on December 24.

After the Japanese occupied the Philippines, the airfield became a major Japanese base of operations during the war, specifically by the Kembu Group. The first Japanese kamikaze (suicide) flight was made from Clark in 1944 as U.S. forces began the process of recapturing the Philippines. American forces began air raids on Japanese occupation in Clark in October, continuing for four months and damaging over 1,500 Japanese planes.

On January 28, the Luzon Guerrilla Area Command, together with the 40th Division, inched slowly across the rugged ground of the Bamban Hills on the west, while the 37th Division launched a combined tank and infantry attacks at Clark Field from the east against heavy automatic and artillery fire, thickly-sown tank mines, and numerous enemy counterattacks. This led to the successful retaking of Clark Air Field after three years of Japanese control.

The Retaking of Clark Air Field brought about huge food and equipment supplies, great quantities of miscellaneous radio and telephone equipment, over forty artillery pieces of various calibers and several months’ supply of ammunitions, and air technical equipment including more or less two hundred new aircraft engines from the Japanese depots.