I sent a few choice pictures of the battle reenactment to Bataan veteran Capt. Felipe Fernandez and here is his feedback of appreciation:
"They pictures are very authentic. All the original Philippine Scouts will admire these pictures not only for the scenes they depict but also for the effort to emulate the sacrifices of those who were in the midst of the dreadful past.
Thanks Victor, they deserve my applause. - Felipe "
Capt. Fernandez was an NCO in the 26th Cavalry PS, and led a machinegun platoon during the campaign.
Welcome back! Can't remember how long you've been gone but it's been a pretty busy last couple of months. There was the Philippine Scout Heritage Society reunion that we attended. Then we had Reading, PA. Then the guys in California had the big one, an actual Bataan battle reenactment. In between we learned Photoshop and put together some fresh impressions like the PA 21st Division. Cool stuff.
With these reenactments, especially the ones that are shown to the public, it's rarely possible to be 100% accurate. You can keep striving for authenticity but there are so many limitations. In LA, there aren't that many trees like in the east coast. What foliage there is is part of the landscaping I agree it would have been a nice touch to have a few twigs and leaves attached to say their helmets. Inaccuracies go both ways too.
Among the Fil-American ranks, there were inaccuracies. One of the scout cars had a recoilless rifle. I'm not sure that was even available back during the Bataan campaign. Most were using bolt-action rifles when the scouts and the US 31st infantry were issued garands. The Mislang brothers were wearing 3-buckle cavalry boots when that wasn't widely available, only to a few officers. Strictly speaking patches were not worn in the field. And the list goes on. Even the terrain is not appropriate! The biggest limitations are of course budget and the availability of both reproduction and original equipment. We have to work with what we have available.
Nothing is 100% accurate but we can keep on improving on it year after year. Every year a few more authentic equipment or uniform pieces can be acquired. These small details while important are subordinate to the bigger context and purpose for the reenactment. As long as we are able to memorialize the gallant stand in Bataan, keep the memory alive, educate the public who are fast forgetting, and honor the remaining veterans, I'd say everything else is gravy.
This period is probably one of the newest to reenacting. I have been reenacting WW2 for over 20 years. I have not seen this period done by anyone until the last couple of years. There is alot to learn about this part of WW2. I found out things that I never even thought would have happened. That was in the world of nit picky aspects of the US troops impression. I found this interesting, because of the fact, it isn't Bandwagon of Brothers vs the almighty SS. As far as doing the 31st US, well ya, it is a cool pre war impression. If you want to do an interesting combat impression, try the Air Corps units. There were alot of people, converted to Infantry type troops, after the shooting started. That is something that you don't see everyday. I think that everyone is trying to recreate this period. It is just going to take some time to fine tune it.
Last Edit: Jul 20, 2007 21:45:18 GMT -5 by victoree