Wednesday 7 January 1942
|Japanese soldiers marching to Bataan ca. 7 January 1942.|
|"Striking down an aircraft. The Parking Officer in the flight deck of HMS VICTORIOUS flagging a Fairey Fulmar to the lift before being struck down." 7 January 1942. © IWM (A 7006).|
|USS Downes (DD-375) on 7 January 1942. Downes was badly damaged during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. This photo shows the aft deckhouse as seen from off the starboard side. USS Cassin (DD-372) has capsized against Downes' port side (U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph).|
With the British defenses further north being savaged, the British in Singapore know they are in trouble. General Archibald Wavell, commander of the entire British-held region centered in India, arrives in Singapore on an inspection tour. He tours the north side of the island with chief engineer Brigadier Ivan Simpson and learns that no island defenses have been prepared. When he queries local commander Lieutenant General Arthur Percival about this, Percival responds that he thinks building defenses would be bad for morale. Wavell immediately orders Percival to begin building defenses on the north side of the island and to prepare to destroy the causeway connecting it to the mainland. Percival pays lip service to Wavell's order but after this meeting does virtually nothing to prepare for a Japanese attack on the island.
|"Commander (F) H C Ranald testing the running up of fighter planes with a stopwatch in hand on the flight deck of HMS VICTORIOUS." 7 January 1942 © IWM (A 7008).|
|"Members of the crew giving the "V" for Victory sign." FFS Indo Chinois, 7 January 1942. © IWM (A 7015).|
|"Commander (F) H C Ranald testing the running up of fighter planes with a stopwatch in hand on the flight deck of HMS VICTORIOUS." 7 January 1942. © IWM (A 7008).|
Western Front: RAF Bomber Command continues its attacks on German warships at anchor in harbors along the French coast. While they have attacked Cherbourg Harbor during the past two nights, today the British switch to Wellington bomber attacks on warships at Brest and St. Nazaire. Neither attack causes much damage, but the Germans are on notice that the British are determined to eliminate the Kriegsmarine surface ships parked on the French Atlantic coast.
|The Orange Leader of Orange, Texas headlines President Roosevelt's budget request for fiscal 1943.|
Future History: Vasily Alekseyev, the strongest man in the world during the 1970s, is born in Pokrovo-Shishkino, Ryazan Oblast, Russia. He begins practicing weightlifting at the age of 18 and does everything necessary to increase his weightlifting prowess, including gaining weight. Alekseyev sets his first world record in January 1970, encouraged by bonus funds granted by the Soviet government. He goes on to win Gold Medals at the 1972 and 1976 Olympics. Alekseyev retires after performing poorly at the 1980 Moscow Olympics and later goes into politics. Vasily Alekseyev passes away on 25 November 2011 at a German clinic from heart problems after having become one of the great international sports celebrities of the Soviet era.
|"Babes on Broadway" (1941) starring Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland is the number one grossing film in the United States for the week of 7 January 1942. It comes in ahead of Bob Hope's "Louisiana Purchase."|