"The Government of the United States das decided to withdraw the American Marine detachments now maintained ashore in China, at Peiping, Tientsin, and Shanghai. It is reported that the withdrawal will begin shortly." President Franklin D. Roosevelt Press Conference, 14 November 1941. President Roosevelt's announcement formally ended almost 15 years of duty by the 4th Marine Regiment in Shanghai. Clouds of war were quickly closing in on the China Marines as Japan and the United States edged ever closer to active hostilities. "One could sense the tenseness in the air," Lieutenant Colonel Curtis T. Beecher remembered, "There was a general feeling of uneasiness and uncertainty in the air." In September 1941, Colonel Samuel L. Howard, USMC, Commanding Officer, 4th Marines, recommended to Admiral Thomas Hart, USN, Commanderin-Chief, Asiatic Fleet, that Howard's regiment be evacuated from its longtime duty station in Shanghai. The regiment comprised two small battalions, made up of approximately 800 Marines and attached naval personnel, and was dangerously exposed to Japanese attack should war come. Hart had anticipated the withdrawal from Shanghai by no longer replacing individual members of the 4th Marines as they left China. Instead, he attached all replacements to the 1st Separate Marine Battalion in the Cavite Navy Yard, Philippine Islands. Hart had no official authorization for this plan, and later wrote, "If we couldn't get all the Regiment out of China we could at least stop sending any more Marines there until somebody bawled us out most vociferously. They never did." On 10 November 1941, Colonel Howard received the long-awaited orders to prepare the withdrawal of his regiment. The author examines the history of the Marine regiment in the fall of the Philippines.