October 14, 1943, Jose P. Laurel Sr. was Inaugurated as President of the Japanese-Sponsored Philippine Republic
Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii in December 1941 and the subsequent Japanese asault on the Philippines, Jose P. Laurel Sr., was told to remain in the Manila by Philippine Commonwealth President Manuel L. Quezon, who escaped to the Bataan Peninsula and then to the United States to establish a government-in-exile. Laurel offered his services to the Japanese, and, because of his criticism of the Unites States’ government in the Philippines, he held a series of high posts in 1942-19-43 climaxing in his election as President by he National Assembly in 1943.
He was sworn-in as President of the Japanese-sponsored Philippine Republic during its inauguration on October 14, 1943, in front of the Legislative Building, which now serves as the National Museum. The occasion was also deemed as the birth of the Second Republic of the Philippines.
Laurel, held office until the surrender of Japan to the United States in 1945. In July 1946 he was charged with dozens of counts of treason, but he never stood trial; he shared in a general amnesty declared by President Manuel Roxas in April 1948.
The Japanese occupation was opposed by large-scale underground and guerrilla activity which was considered a back-up unit of the United States Army. Filipinos suffered greatly from Japanese brutality, including loss of lives and monstrous physical destruction by the time the war was over. An estimated one million Filipinos had been killed, and Manila was extensively damaged.
The Filipinos continued fighting until Japan signed the terms of surrender to the United States on September 2, 1945 on board the battleship Missouri at Tokyo Bay.
The Japanese had suffered over 425,000 dead in the Philippines.