1 Jan 1945
  • Fregattenkapitän Frotz-Henning Brandes took command of cruiser Köln. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Some time during this month, Oberleutnant Otto Wermuth took command of German submarine U-530. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Kete began lifeguard duty off Ryukyu Islands, Japan. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Pintado arrived in Brisbane, Australia, ending her third war patrol. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Wake Island arrived at Kossol Roads, Palau Islands, loaded ammunition and other supplies, and departed for the Philippine Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • German submarine control requested a position report from U-869, which did not respond. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Air Vice Marshal J. W. Baker became the commanding officer of the No. 12 Group RAF. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • When his 9 Squadron Lancaster bomber from Bardney was hit and set on fire in a raid on the Dortmund-Ems canal, wireless operator RAF Flight Sergeant George Thompson gallantly braved the flames to save his mid-upper and rear gunners who were trapped in the inferno. The rear gunner later recovered but Thompson's burns were so severe that three weeks later he developed pneumonia and died in a hospital. He was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross. ww2dbase [AC]
  • US aircraft attacked Japanese airfields on Negros Island, Philippine Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Otto Skorzeny departed Cologne, Germany to return to the field headquarters of German Armored Brigade 150. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Captain Chuzaburo Yamazumi was named the chief of staff of the Japanese Navy 3rd Air Fleet. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Heinz Guderian requested Adolf Hitler to allow reinforcements to be sent to German units in Hungary and Poland. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Léon Degrelle was promoted to the rank of SS-Obersturmbannführer. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • German troops began a withdrawal from the Ardennes Forest in the Belgian-German border region. Meanwhile, in retaliation for the Malmedy massacre, US troops massacred 30 SS prisoners at Chenogne, Belgium. In the air, the German Luftwaffe launched Unternehmen Bodenplatte, which consisted of 800 aircraft conducting low-level strikes against snow-bound Allied airfields in the Netherlands and Belgium. They destroyed 220 aircraft, mainly on the ground, but lost 188 aircraft of their own, as well as many experienced pilots who could not be replaced. This operation failed to achieve its goal of wiping out Allied air power based in the region. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
Caroline Islands
  • US Army troops landed on Fais Island in the Caroline Islands to capture and destroy a Japanese radio station. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Xiao Yisu was awarded the Order of Blue Sky and White Sun. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Chiang Kaishek made a special radio announcement on the occasion of a New Year's Day, noting that the past 8th year of the war of resistance against the Japanese was the most perilous, but the tide was about to turn. The coming 9th year would be the decisive year in the war against Japan. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Dutch East Indies
  • Fairey Firefly Fighters from the No. 1770 Squadron FAA, recently arrived in Ceylon to join the British Pacific Fleet, attacked the Japanese-held oil refineries at Pangkalan Brandan, Sumatra, Dutch East Indies using rocket projectiles (RP). ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
  • Ferdinand Schörner was awarded diamonds to his Knight's Cross the Iron Cross medal. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Two BQ-7 drones were launched against the power station in Oldenburg in northern Germany. Both drones were shot down by anti-aircraft fire. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Five Japanese submarines departed Inland Sea, Japan with Kaiten submarines aboard. I-36 sailed for Ulithi in the Caroline Islands, I-48 for Hollandia in New Guinea, I-53 for Palau Islands, I-56 for the Admiralty Islands, and I-58 for Guam in the Mariana Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • 19 American B-24 bombers based in Saipan, Mariana Islands struck Japanese positions at Iwo Jima. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • US aircraft attacked Clark Field on Luzon Island of the Philippine Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • 100 male and 100 female Polish prisoners of the Gestapo from block 11 in Auschwitz I camp were transferred by SS doctor Fritz Klein to the chief of Auschwitz II-Birkenau Crematorium V Erich Muhsfeldt. Muhsfeldt's men executed these police prisoners by firing squad. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • Andrew Geddes was mentioned in despatches. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
United States
  • A group of German prisoners of war, having escaped from Camp Papago Park in Phoenix, Arizona, United States, were captured 30 miles north of the US-Mexico border. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 1 Jan 1945
Japanese top level meeting before Emperor Showa, 1 Jan 1945RA-24B-15-DT Banshee aircraft (serial number 42-54736) preparing for take off on Morotai in the Moluccas, 1 Jan 1945; note C-47 Skytrain and hulk of C-45 Expeditor fuselage

1 Jan 1945 Interactive Map

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, Hugh Martyr, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis

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Famous WW2 Quote
"Goddam it, you'll never get the Purple Heart hiding in a foxhole! Follow me!"

Captain Henry P. Jim Crowe, Guadalcanal, 13 Jan 1943