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STUBBORN FIGHTING

IN PHILIPPINES

DEFENDERS REGROUPED AFTER MANILA'S FALL

FURTHER WITHDRAWAL IN PERAK

LONDON, Sunday.-lt is confirmed in London that our : naval losses at Hong Kong were confined to a few small units. :

Latest news from the Philippines states that the defenders of Luzon have regrouped north and norfh-west of Manila, which . was occupied by the enemy on Friday, and have consolidated

their new defences.

To-day's Singapore communique states that on the northern front in'Perak enemy pressure has been maintained, and dur ing last night our forces were withdrawn further south. They were closely followed by Japanese armored fighting vehicles. These were successfully engaged, and* it is believed that enemy losses were heavy. There has been little enemy activity else

where.

Last night our bombers attacked enemy shipping off the west const ol Malaya. Twenty-four enemy aircrafl flew over thc Singapore area. Tlu\ caused very littlo damage, bm there ' were *, few civiliuu casu alties. One 'plane showed signs of hav ing bscn. diinioged by our anti-aircraft lire, and whs unlikely to reach.its base Yesterday an'enemy aircraft crashed ii tho jungle in northern-Malaya.

British and American aircraft .oper ating from Burma yesterday attachée nu aerodrome 200 milos east pf Rangoon Without loss to themselves, they de stroyed six enemy bombers and pro bably another.

Last evening's Singaporo commu nique stated that .pressure nad increasod on the Perak front. They had mude three attacks, all of which" were unsuc cessful.' His casualties were 400 to 500. In addition, enemy parties wore reported to bo lauding iii lower Perak and another enemy force attempting tc land was engaged by'our artillory. A small steamer was set on fire, and re ported lo bo sinking. Pour barges wore sunk, and the remainder of the enemy craft withdrew.

Tho enemy yesterday made some pro gress in the Kuantaii area, and infil trated to the outskirts of the town in an endeavor to seize tho aerodrome.

Normal B.A.F. reconnaissance acti vity continued, but thero was nothing outstanding to report. There was little enemy air activity. Enemy air craft on Friday night attacked target! iu Singapore. Thero was littlo da mage. Seven casualties were repor

ted.

NEW FOCAL POINT

Though thc possibility of American and Filipino resistance continuing is not ruled out, it seems" most likely that Malaya will soon becomo thc focal point of tho Japanese attacks. Tho Ameri cans will now bo ablo to fight delaying actions and guerilla, warfare.

The probability of a gradual increase in the force and tempo of tho .Tapan ose move against Malaya has already been foreseen by tho Imperial comman ders at Singapore.

Present information from the front indicates that tho Imperial forces arc holding the Japanese on a lino south ward of Ipoh, and probably slightly to the northward of- Tapah. It is autho ritatively stated that tho Japanese landing at the mouth of the Perak river was made by troops from Penang, who travelled by" barges towed by two

steamers. . Our aircraft bombed thc barges, and wiped out large numbers of tjie* enemy.

THREAT TO SINGAPORE

Nevertheless, thc Japaneso appar ently wero able to gain a foothold, and British troops have' certainly boon de tached to deal with tho threat without disturbing the present line.

Manila's fall means that the Japan ese probably will attempt to- employ a grand pincer movement against Singa pore, tho drivo developing from north Malaya, and possibly by sea, with a drive from thc Manila and Borneo bases, to which the Japanese will now be able to divert large numbers . of troopships formerly- employed in ? sub duing the Philippines' resistance. Pro bably only garrison troops will be left in thc Philippines, and the moro sea soned troops will bo used to attempt a landing at Singaporo itself.

The possibility of such, a sea-borne attempt makes the question of bomber reinforcements most urgent. Tho bom bers available in Malaya have amply proved their worth in raids against enemy-occupied aerodromes, where they have wrought very gwat damage, lar gely beeauso the Japanese arc not yet using night fighters.

GOOD WORK OF N.E.I.

According to yesterday's Batavia communique, Japanese air activity over N.K.I, territory was "less than on pre ceding days. A. lono Japanese plane appeared over one of tho aerodromes of tho outer provinces, and dropped a few incendiary bombs without hitting any mark or doing any damage. Dur ing tho attack on Laboean bombs were aimed at ships lying in the harbor, but only a few exploded. No ono was hurt, and there was no damage.

The president of tho Netherlands East Indies Chamber of Commerce ip New York has sent the following tele gram to the Governor-General:-"The brilliant feats of arms of the N.B.I, fighting forces, which are acknowledged everywhere, have filled the Allied peo ples with admiration. We offer Your "xcelleney sincere congratulations."*

On tho occasion of tho New Year. the Governor of Surinam (Dutch Guiana) sent a telegram to thc Gover nor-General, expressing , sympathy in the common fight. ;v

FALL OF MANILA

N A Washington communique says that at 3 p.m. on Friday (local limo) ad vanced elements of thc Japanese troops entered Manila. It was reported that these troops wore limited to tho num ber necessary for police duty and the maintenance of order. All American and Pliiliripjino troops wore withdrawn from tho city several days previously, and all defenco installations wcro re moved or destroyed. . Many wouuded American arid Philippine soldiers were ovacuiVted from Manila, and aro en

routo to Australia.

The situation in thc vicinity of Ma nila necessitated radical readjustment of thc lines held by tho American and Philippine- troops, and consolidation of the dofeuco forces north of Manila. This manoeuvre was successfully ac complished in the face of strong-enemy opposition. Tho consequent shortening of the defenco lines necessarily uncov ered tho road to Manila, and made pos sible the Japaucso entry to thc city. As it had previously been decjarcd an open city, no close defence within its environs-was possible.

STILL RESISTING

Tho loss of Manila, while serious, has not lessened tho resistance to Jap anese attacks. The American and

Philippine troops are occupying strong positions to tho north of tho city and holding tho fortified island of Corregi dor arid other defences in Manila Bay, and effectively preventing tho uso of this harbor by tho enemy. During Fri day there was heavy fighting on thu ground, with repeated enemy attachs from tho north. Japan's air activity was somewhat less in intensity than for several davs.

Tho landing of a small enemy force was effected at Jolo, in tho Sulu Archi pelago, south of tho Philippine group.

The U.S. Navy Department announ ces that tho naval baso of Cavite was evacuated befovo tho enemy entered Manila. All records, equipment and stores not destroyed by 'bombing were removed prior to tho evacuation. All industrial and supply facilities, includ ing fuel, were destroyed.

SERIOUS LOSS

Admiral Sir Andrew Cunningham, Commander of the Mediterranean Fleet, interviewed at Alexandria, said ? the loss of Manila was' serious, because it converted tho waters between the Phil ippines,. Indo-China and Borneo into a Japanese inland sea. But, although the Americans were slow starters, it was only a. matter of waiting until we had the resources in hand.

<'I orii surprised at tho vast scale upon which thc Japanese launched their attack," ho said, "but they are look ing for somothing they will - not get, namely, a quick victory;jn tho Paci

fic."

Tho London "Times" ; says tho'fall

of Manila' does not mean that the

battle of tho Philippines is ended. Gen-|

oral M'Arthur has withdrawn to new

positions, and is expected to put up a| stern fight,, perhaps in. the mountains to the north-east of Manila, where there should bo. scope for guerilla tac tics, in which the Filipinos excel. But meanwhile Japanese power is estab lished in a now and commanding posi tion in'tho Western Pacific, and if thc conquest of Luzon bo completed for midable fleets and armies will bo re leased for an attack elsewhere. Tho loss to America of tho Inst naval har bor nearer Asia than Hawaii is grave.

Simultaneous irruption in many dir ections has been the dominant feature of Japanese strategy so faT, and tho Japanese now have a very dangerous centre of radiation for further irrup tions. The Philippines lies near the centre of an arc of British and Dutch territories extending down Malaya and. through the Indies. All these are threatened, and behinds the line of islands Australia "must maintain even greater vigilance than before, tho pa per concludes.

FIVE-HOUR ATTACK

A Washington communique says 60 Jap anese bombers maintained a five-hour at tack upon Corregidor, and at least three were shot down. Thirteeu Americans Iwere killed and 35 wounded. There was

no material damage.

Tho Toki» ofSciil radio mid G«n«rml

M'Arthur was wounded in Hie right shoulder, and the Domci Agency said he might have been sent by the hospital ship to Australia. It also claimed that Jap anese reconnaissance planes- had returned safely from a flight in the direction of

Australia. !

The Washington War Department, re-1 .plying to the Tokio radio said General H'Arthur was personally leading the de fence of the Philippines, and had not made reference to being wounded. Cer tainly he would have done so if he had been seriously injured.

Tho Tokio official'radio says 6000 Aus tralian, Canadian and Indian troops were captured in Hong Kong, and taken to

Kowloon.

"DESPERATE DEFENCE"

The Tokio official radio states that Jap anese .air, land and naval forces are at tacking the Corregidor defences, arid that General il'Arthur s forces are putting up a desperate resistance. The Domci Agency Bays thc Luzon successes relieve large forces to increase thc pressure upon Singapore.

A Hangoon communique says a' small party of Japanese recently infiltrated Ook pyn, in the Mergui district. Our forces exchanged shots after locating the enemy. Our columns were ordered to attack, but the enemy withdrew before they arrived, and left a few dead. The Japanese arc reported to have discoverd British naval fores in the vicinity, and beat a hasty re treat in the face of our military patrols.

The Tokio official radio says Masaaki Iinuriia, the famous pilot who flew from London in record time in 1937, was se verely wounded by British fire in north ern Malaya. Despite his injuries, linumn managed to return to his base, but died

later.

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