On this day, American General Douglas MacArthur returns to the Philippines, wading ashore Leyte Island. The son of an American Civil War hero, MacArthur served as chief U.S. military adviser to the Philippines before World War II. On December 8, 1941, the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, Japan launched its invasion of the Philippines. Undaunted by his failure to hold the islands of Luzon and Corregidor, he promised the Philippine people, I shall return. On October 20, 1944, after advancing island by island across the Pacific Ocean, MacArthur stepped onto the island of Leyte. In January 1945, his forces invaded the main Philippine island of Luzon. Manila, the Philippine capital, fell in March, and in June MacArthur announced Allied offensive operations on Luzon to be at an end. Scattered Japanese resistance continued until the end of the war in August.