MTO - North Africa: Day 29 of 63 of the UK's Operation COMPASS, their campaign in North Africa against the Italians in Egypt and Libya. Churchill demands that a number of troops be released from Wavell's offensive in Africa and sent to Greece. This turns out to be a big blunder.
East Africa: Day 211 of 537 of Italy's East African campaign in the lands south of Egypt.
CBI - China: Day 1,280 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
CBI - Thailand: Day 98 of 221 of the Franco-Thai War (Vichy France vs Thailand).
1942 — , January 6
USA: Roosevelt announces that US forces are to be based in UK.
Russian Front: In Moscow, the Russian Foreign Minister denounces German atrocities in occupied Russia, where in Kiev alone 52,000 people have been massacred.
Russian Front - North: Day 121 of 872 of the Siege of Leningrad.
Russian Front - Center: Day 97 of 98 of the Battle of Moscow.
Russian Front - South: Day 69 of 248 of the Siege of Sevastopol, Crimean Peninsula. All further German attacks against the Crimean fortress of Sevastopol are stopped for the winter.
MTO - Libya: Rommel's battered troops reach the Tripolitanian frontier, having evaded all British attempts to cut them off.
CBI - Burma: Day 24 of 164 of Japan's Invasion of Burma.
CBI - China: Day 1,645 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
Day 14 of 99 of the 3rd Battle of Changsha.
CBI - Malaya: Day 30 of 55 of the Battle of British Malaya.
PTO - Borneo: Day 22 of 107 of the Battle of Borneo.
PTO - Philippines: Day 30 of 152 of the 1st Battle of the Philippines.
1943 — , January 6
Russian Front - North: Day 486 of 872 of the Siege of Leningrad.
Russian Front - North: Day 49 of 59 of the Battle of Velikiye Luki, near Leningrad. This stalemate does help ease the siege a little, but mostly it keeps German troops from being sent to other fronts.
Russian Front - North: Day 247 of 658 of the Siege of the Kholm Pocket, USSR lays siege to the Kholm Pocket but the Germans hold out for a about a year and a half.
Russian Front - South: Day 138 of 165 of the Battle of Stalingrad, bloodiest battle in human history.
Russian Front - South: Day 26 of 69 of the USSR's Operation LITTLE SATURN. A successful drive into the Northern Caucasus and the Donets Basin pushing the Axis troops out.
MTO - Tunisia: Day 51 of 178 of the Battle of Tunisia. RAF and US Air Forces provide Allied air support.
CBI - Burma: Day 17 of 104 of the 1st Battle of Arakan. US 10th Air Force provides air support.
CBI - China: Day 2,010 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
PTO - Alaska: Day 214 of 435 of the Battle of Kiska, Aleutian Islands. US 11th Air Force B-24s bomb the Kiska submarine base area.
PTO - Malaya: Day 322 of 357 of the Battle of Timor Island, a long guerrilla war ending in Japanese victory.
PTO - New Guinea: Day 49 of 66 of the Battle of Buna-Gona. 5th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - New Guinea: US 5th Air Force attacks a convoy off the coast of New Britain heading for Lae.
PTO - Solomon Islands: Day 153 of 187 of the Battle of Guadalcanal.
1944 — , January 6
UK: A joint RAF-USAAF statement discloses the hitherto secret development of jet aircraft in Britain and the USA. Full details of the Whittle turbojet given to USAAF General Arnold in July 1941 are revealed.
Sir Frank Whittle (left) and Dr Hans von Ohain, postwar
German airplane designer Dr Hans von Ohain and Britain's Sir Frank Whittle are both recognized as being the co-inventors of the jet engine. Each worked separately and knew nothing of the other's work. Hans von Ohain is considered the designer of the first operational turbojet engine. Frank Whittle was the first to register a patent for the turbojet engine in 1930. Hans von Ohain was granted a patent for his turbojet engine in 1936. However, Hans von Ohain's jet was the first to fly in 1939. Frank Whittle's jet first flew in 1941.
The modern turbojet engine used in many British and American aircraft is based on the prototype that Frank Whittle invented.
Gloster-Whittle E28/39 aircraft, 23 Oct 45
The E28/39 was built by the Gloster Aircraft Co Ltd, and its chief designer was W G Carter. The E28/39 lifted off briefly while doing taxiing trials in April 1941 and made its first true flight of 17 minutes at Cranwell in May. It had a long research career during the Second World War flying with several different jet engines. Today, it is in the Science Museum, London, alongside the W1 engine, designed by Frank Whittle, which powered it for the first jet flight in Britain.