John F. Kennedy photo

Message to President Macapagal of the Philippines on Bataan Day.

April 09, 1962

Dear Mr. President:

On this day, we and millions of our fellow citizens will recall the sacrifices of the heroes who were so sorely tested just twenty years ago on Bataan and Corregidor. Although physically defeated, their devotion to our common democratic principles added new meaning to those ideals and made possible the ultimate triumph of freedom and democracy in a vast area of the world.

Our peoples are again united in spirit and in arms in a similar struggle against a new and much more subtle form of imperialism which would enslave us. Let no one overlook the lesson of Bataan that the strength of our common heritage and courage and devotion will prevail to bring free choice and justice to mankind.

I look forward with pleasure to the opportunity the people of the United States soon will have to express personally to you and to the people of the Philippines their gratification and pride in the enduring partnership which carried us through the dark days of two decades ago to our present mutual pursuit of peaceful economic and social progress.

Sincerely yours,


John F. Kennedy, Message to President Macapagal of the Philippines on Bataan Day. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

Simple Search of Our Archives