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Yamashita's Gold

James_H

And I like to roam the land
Joined
May 18, 2002
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Did the Japanese secretly hide a hoard of gold in the Philippines when it became apparent that they would lose WWII? And did Ferdinand Marcos ultimately somehow get hold the treasure, as claimed by Imelda Marcos? If not, where is it? Did it ever really exist?

[Treasure hunter Rogelio] Roxas claimed a second man, who served as Yamashita's interpreter during the Second World War, told him of visiting an underground chamber there where stores of gold and silver were kept, and who told of a golden buddha kept at a convent located near the underground chambers. Roxas claimed that within the next few years he formed a group to search for the treasure, and obtained a permit for the purpose from a relative of Ferdinand, Judge Pio Marcos. In 1971, Roxas claimed, he and his group uncovered an enclosed chamber on state lands near Baguio City where he found bayonets, samurai swords, radios, and skeletal remains dressed in a Japanese military uniform. Also found in the chamber, Roxas claimed, were a 3-foot-high (0.91 m) golden-colored Buddha and numerous stacked crates which filled an area approximately 6 feet x 6 feet x 35 feet. He claimed he opened just one of the boxes, and found it packed with gold bullion. He said he took from the chamber the golden Buddha, which he estimated to weigh 1,000 kilograms, and one box with twenty-four gold bars, and hid them in his home. He claimed he resealed the chamber for safekeeping until he could arrange the removal of the remaining boxes, which he suspected were also filled with gold bars. Roxas said he sold seven of the gold bars from the opened box, and sought potential buyers for the golden Buddha. Two individuals representing prospective buyers examined and tested the metal in the Buddha, Roxas said, and reported it was made of solid, 20-carat gold. It was soon after this, Roxas claimed, that President Ferdinand Marcos learned of Roxas' discovery and ordered him arrested, beaten, and the Buddha and remaining gold seized. Roxas alleged that in retaliation to his vocal campaign to reclaim the Buddha and the remainder of the treasure taken from him, Ferdinand continued to have Roxas threatened, beaten and eventually incarcerated for over a year.
 
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Sounds like the introduction to a Jackie Chan adventure, circa 1987.
 
Sounds like the introduction to a Jackie Chan adventure, circa 1987.
It serves as the main plot line to Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon. For me, the most intriguing part is Imelda Marcos claiming it formed the bulk of her husband's fortune, though she may have been trying to deflect attention from his criminal dealings.
 
Another article:
Yamashita's Gold: Did the world’s biggest treasure fall into the hands of the American government after WW2?

...Inside the tunnel was treasures of a staggering proportion.

Labeled tunnel 8, this was just one of 175 tunnels dotted around the Japanese occupied islands of the Philippines. Each filled with billions of dollars worth of gold, jewels and priceless statues and art.

The Japanese army had spent the last 8 years engaging in the biggest plunder in history. Rampaging through China, Korea, Malaysia, and Indonesia, they systematically stripped the countries of wealth built up over thousands of years.

In the process, the Japanese Army committed a grisly catalogue of bloody atrocities and war crimes, gang rapes, mass murders and pillaging of the like rarely seen in history.
 

This article refers to, and seems to rely heavily upon, the book Gold Warriors: America's Secret Recovery of Yamashita's Gold, by Sterling and Peggy Seagrave (2003).

A searchable, though possibly only partial, electronic edition of the book can be accessed at Google Books:

https://books.google.com/books?id=n...HIQ6AEIKTAA#v=snippet&q=Gold Warriors&f=false
 
Update ...

Yamashita's legendary treasure hoard has been attracting more searchers and more elaborate excavations. Recently one village has appealed to authorities that an extensive treasure hunting dig threatens to cause destructive landslides that could destory homes. To make matters worse, the various parties involved don't seem able to confirm whether this operation even obtained official permission in the first place.
Treasure hunters search for fabled gold on Philippines island. Hoard may not even exist.

Excavations by treasure hunters searching for a hoard of gold in the Philippines, said to have been hidden by a Japanese World War II general, are threatening to cause landslides in a remote village.

The search for fabled buried treasure is inspired by centuries-old Filipino folktales, according to an anthropologist. The treasure seems to be just that — a fable — as historians say it probably doesn't even exist.

"People [are] spending a lot of money and a lot of time and effort looking for stuff that is probably not there," said Piers Kelly, a linguistic anthropologist at the University of New England in Armidale, Australia.

In the latest development, people in the Igbaras district on the island of Panay have asked officials to put a stop to excavations that they say could cause landslides, according to the official Philippine News Agency. ...
FULL STORY: https://www.livescience.com/treasure-hunters-fabled-gold-philippines-island.html
 
Every man and his dog knows someone who knows someone whose grandfathers uncle helped the Japanese bury the gold in an elaborately booby-trapped tunnel and then escaped the massacre of the workers who helped once the gold was buried.There’s always a map and investment always needed to unearth the gold,trust me,I have travelled over more of the PI than most pinoys,and heard the story in one version or another several times over the years,mabuhay sa pinas.
 
It looks like there won't be another season of Lost Gold of WW2. I was reading that the treasure hunters have been kicked off the island. The rumour going round is that the Philippine government decided that they were going to take over the search.

I'm not sure what to believe.
 
It looks like there won't be another season of Lost Gold of WW2. I was reading that the treasure hunters have been kicked off the island. The rumour going round is that the Philippine government decided that they were going to take over the search.

I'm not sure what to believe.
A shame, I was looking forward to the next series.
 
The rumour going round is that the Philippine government decided that they were going to take over the search.

I'm not sure what to believe.
I wouldn’t believe a word of that,the Philippines runs on rumour,they call it tsismis,they are total gossip mongers,there’s no treasure,I almost fell for it once,I went with members of the DENR to explore a cave system and we found a coffin,the locals thought it contained gold,we popped it open but it contained a pile of bones,I will try and find the photo.
 
Raiders Of The Lost Past** 2013-5 shown on Yesterday channel in the UK (not the more recent Juanita Ramirez BBC series) had a great episode on Yamashita's Gold.

After that initial find, people dug up... nothing!

** I think some of the episodes may have been rehashed into/from another series - Raiders of The Lost Gold perhaps?
 
Raiders Of The Lost Past** 2013-5 shown on Yesterday channel in the UK (not the more recent Juanita Ramirez BBC series) had a great episode on Yamashita's Gold.

After that initial find, people dug up... nothing!

** I think some of the episodes may have been rehashed into/from another series - Raiders of The Lost Gold perhaps?
It’s fiction spread by pinoys,visit the country,travel in the visayas,down to Mindanao and across to Palawan,you will see what I mean,it’s gullibles travels if you allow it to be.
 
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