LAST MAN OUT: Glenn McDole, USMC, Survivor of the Palawan Massacre in World War II

Article excerpt

LAST MAN OUT: Glenn McDole, USMC, Survivor of the Palawan Massacre in World War II, Bob Wilbanks, McFarland & Company, Inc., Jefferson, NC, 2004, 179 pages, $29.95.

Acts of Injustice done between the setting and the rising sun

In history lie like bones, each one.

- W.H. Auden, The Ascent of F6

Throughout the history of warfare, mankind has chronicled human suffering and the extraordinary accomplishments of men and women motivated by survival and love of country. Bob Wilbanks explores these extremes in the Pacific Theater during World War II by examining the ordeals of Glenn "Mac" McDole, one of 11 survivors of Palawan Prison Camp 10A (a camp located on a remote Pacific island).

At the outset of war, Japan's armies captured thousands of American and Allied soldiers, sailors, marines, and civilians. These prisoners of war (POWs) and internees were held in camps extending from Burma to the Philippines and even to mainland Japan. Regardless of location, the Japanese treated all captives with the same contempt: starvation, disease, beatings, torture, and execution were the norm.

Wilbanks's biography follows McDole from his enlistment in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1940 to his retirement from law enforcement in 1989. Exceptionally researched and written, this book provides valuable insight into the Imperial Japanese Army's initial exploits in the months following the attack on Pearl Harbor; the brutal fighting at Cavite, Los Banos, and Fort Hughes; the siege of Corregidor; and the subsequent capture and imprisonment of Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Filipino troops, and civilians. …


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