MANILA MISSION 2023
Operation Benjamin and the American Battle Monuments Commission
will correct historical errors at the
Manila American Cemetery in Manila, Philippines.
Join us for this historic and unique event.
February 13-15th, 2023
With an option to extend the trip through February 19th, 2023
Manila & Bangkok
Reserve your place today. This is a no commitment reservation.
We will contact you in the coming weeks to finalize your reservation.
ABOUT THE TRIP
Monday February 13
Participants will arrive in Manila. Monday evening will feature an in-depth orientation and dinner, with a chance for participants, families, and our hosts from the Manila Jewish community to meet one another.
Tuesday February 14
To create the proper historical context of the sacrifices of these young men, we will head to Corregidor Island. Corregidor was the site of fierce prolonged fighting and was left pretty much “as is” at war’s end. Our soldier, CPL Sam Cordova, was killed in action on December 29, 1941 on the Island at Fort Mills during the first Japanese assault. We will get to the island by ferry, and our private full-day tour will feature an experienced guide and 2 talks by experts on the Pacific Theater. From the island, we will view Bataan just across the bay, where the infamous Bataan Death March began.
Wednesday February 15
We will be replacing the headstones of 26-year-old PVT Ralph Greenstein, 19-year-old PVT Harvey P. Mashatt, and 23-year-old PVT Eugene Shore (approval pending). In addition, we will visit 3 additional soldiers to pay our respects and conduct memorial services for CPL Sam Cordova (whose headstone we replaced during COVID), the ONLY Star of David “Unknown” from WWII, and PVT Jethro Cohen (more about this fascinating soldier to follow).
Family members and participants who wish to return to the US, will be able to make a flight Wednesday evening. For those who can extend their stay in the Far East, the group will continue with the following extraordinary events by flying to Bangkok, Thailand on Wednesday late afternoon.
Thursday February 16
We will travel by private coach to the TBRC Museum, the infamous Bridge Over the River Kwai and Hell-Fire Pass. We will stay in the area that evening.
Friday/Saturday February 17/18
We will pay our respects to the Allied soldiers at the remote Chungkai War Cemetery and say Kaddish at the graves of Jewish soldiers. We will return to Bangkok on Friday afternoon and then spend Shabbat itself at the Chabad of Bangkok.
Sunday February 19
Depart back to the US on Sunday.
CPL Sam Cordova
Manila, Phillipines December 29, 2020