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By Douglas A. Phillips

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World War II had shown that these powers were not invincible. This factor and Japan’s promise to support independence movements helped promote nationalist movements in the region. With the Battle of Midway, the tide of World War II in the Pacific started to turn toward the United States and the Allies. Island-hopping their way across the Pacific toward Japan, the Allies methodically pushed the Japanese forces back to their homeland. Fearing thousands of casualties in an attempt to invade Japan, President Truman chose to use atomic bombs on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

There are more than half a billion people in Southeast Asia; nearly half live in Indonesia. The Philippines has more than 84 55 MYANMAR Medan O C E A N I N D I A N I N 110°E Semarang Jakarta Bandung Palembang Singapore E Manila 120°E Ujungpandang N 120°E O Surabaya D BRUNEI Ho Chi Minh City M A L AY S I A Kuala Lumpur Phnom Penh 100°E Haiphong VIETNAM CAMBODIA Bangkok THAILAND LAOS Hanoi 110°E 0 0 I A 130°E EAST TIMOR S Davao 250 S E 500 Miles 140°E PAPUA NEW GUINEA OCEAN N 20° 160°E Urban Population Number of People Over 8,000,000 4,000,000–8,000,000 1,000,000–4,000,000 150°E 150°E 0° E Population Density Per sq.

The United States had a strong strategic interest 47 48 Southeast Asia in the Pacific region because of the rising Communist tide in Indochina and other areas of Southeast Asia. The Philippines presented a desirable location for air and naval bases, and, in return, these bases provided the Philippines with badly needed hard currency. S. S. S. presence. By 1991, all American bases in the Philippines had been closed. Democratic rule prevailed in the Philippines until the arrival of Ferdinand Marcos, who was elected president in 1965.

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