Statement by President Truman on Independence for the Philippines26

I have had several discussions with President Osmeña on the subject of Philippine independence. These discussions were started by President Roosevelt.

As a result of the discussions I have had with the President of the Philippines, I am prepared to endorse and carry through to their conclusion the policies laid down by President Roosevelt respecting the Islands and the independence of the Filipino people.

The date of independence will be advanced as soon as practicable in pursuance of the policy outlined by Congress in S. J. Resolution 93. The Filipino people, whose heroic and loyal stand in this war has won the affection and admiration of the American people, will be fully assisted by the United States in the great problem of rehabilitation and reconstruction which lies ahead.

In view of the special relationship between the United States and the Philippines as created by S. J. Resolution 93, 1 believe that suitable reciprocal trade between the two countries should continue for such time, after independence, as may be necessary to provide the new Republic with a fair opportunity to secure its economic freedom and independence—a permanent blessing for the patriotic people of the Philippines.

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To assist me in the attainment of these objectives and with the concurrence of President Osmeña, I am asking Senator Millard Tydings, of Maryland, Chairman of the Filipino Rehabilitation Commission, to proceed to Manila as my special envoy to examine conditions there and report his recommendations to me.

I have also designated the following to accompany Senator Tydings and to assist him in the accomplishment of this mission:

  • Vice Admiral W. T. Tarrant, United States Navy
  • Brigadier General Frank E. Lowe, United States Army
  • Colonel Julian Baumann, United States Army
  • George E. Ijams, Veterans Administration
  • E. D. Hester, Interior Department
  • J. Weldon Jones, Bureau of the Budget
  • Ben D. Dorfman, United States Tariff Commission
  • Daniel S. Brierley, United States Maritime Commission
  • C. H. Matthiessen, Consultant, War Production Board

It will be my constant endeavor to be of assistance to the Philippines. I will be only too happy to see to it that the close friendship between our two peoples, developed through many years of fruitful association, is maintained and strengthened.

I hope to be able to accept the invitation of President Osmeña to visit Manila at the inauguration of the Philippine Republic.

  1. Released by the White House May 5; reprinted from Department of State Bulletin, May 6, 1945, p. 867.