Fighting in the Philippines was intense during World War II, especially during the Japanese invasion. Filipino forces and the Americans were constantly fighting.
At the onset of the invasion, Japanese soldiers led captured Americans on the “Bataan Death March” as the Filipinos continued to battle. However, the Filipinos fought hard against the Japanese.
As World War II went on, more Filipino fighters resisted the Japanese. Around 260,000 resistance fighters battled the Japanese. However, the Filipinos were not thrilled with the Japanese in charge.
The Japanese treated the civilians horribly. They took away their possessions, businesses, and schooling had to be Tokyo approved only.
One school teacher, Nieves Fernandez, saw how the Japanese treated her family and friends. Some even had scalding water thrown on them to get them to fall in line.
Fernandez herself had her business taken away, and the Japanese said they would take away her students too. However, she was the wrong teacher to mess with.
She was not going to take the abuse from the Japanese. Fernandez made her own shotgun from a pipe and a bolo knife. She put on all-black clothing and ambushed the Japanese troops in the countryside.
She did this for two and a half years. During that time, she would go out barefoot and kill as many soldiers as she could with her shotgun and knife, earning her the nickname “The Silent Killer.”
She cut the throat of many of the soldiers from behind. Her bravery was inspiration for others in Tacloban. She ended up leading over 100 men in a guerilla unit, teaching them to be silent killers like her.
She killed dozens of Japanese soldiers and earned a 10,000-Peso bounty from the Imperial Army. However, none of the Filipino’s were willing to betray her.
She and her men would raid Japanese camps, freeing prisoners of war, pushing them out of villages, and saving women the Japanese used as sex slaves. Fernandez killed around 200 soldiers, and her “Gas Pipe Gang” continued to interfere with the Japanese.
Because of her efforts, gas pipes and guns became popular in the country, and the Japanese ended up only controlling 12 of the 48 Filipino provinces.