5 Jan 1943
  • USS S-28 reached her assigned patrol area in the northern Kurile Islands. ww2dbase [S-28 | CPC]
  • Germans began a 3-day operation in the Lvov ghetto in Ukraine which resulted in about 10,000 deaths and the disbanding of the Jewish Council. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • General Carl A. Spaatz relinquished his post as commander of the US 8th Air Force on his transfer to the Mediterranean Theatre. He was replaced by Major General Ira C. Eaker. ww2dbase [Carl Spaatz | AC]
  • While USS Bailey was moored in Sand Bay, Great Sitkin Island, Alaska alongside USS Cuyama for fuel, USS Bancroft came alongside and collided with Bailey. Bancroft’s anchor tore a hole in Bailey’s starboard side causing Bailey to stay in port for two days to make repairs. Commander of Destroyer Squadron 14 shifted his flag to Bancroft. ww2dbase [Bailey | Great Sitkin Island, Aleutian Islands | DS]
Australian New Guinea
  • Despite George Kenney's orders for an all-out attack on Rabaul, New Britain at dawn, Kenneth Walker launched a limited (without 63rd Bomb Squadron, whose commander William Benn disagreed with the timing of the attack) mid-day attack. Bad weather in Australia prevented some of the B-24 bombers from launching, thus ultimately only 6 B-24 bombers and 6 B-17 bombers took off for the attack. Two B-17 bombers attacked Lakunai and Vunakanau airfields near Rabaul between 0900 and 0930 hours. At 1200 hours, 6 B-24 bombers and 3 B-17 bombers (one of which carried Walker) attacked, sinking army transport Keifuku Maru, damaging two merchant ships, and damaging destroyer Tachikaze; 3 Ki-43 fighters were shot down during the raid. At 1317 hours, B-17 bomber San Antonio Rose was shot down; Walker and the entire crew were reported as missing, and none of them would be found. ww2dbase [New Guinea-Papua Campaign, Phase 2 | Rabaul, New Britain | CPC]
British Western Pacific Territories
  • Lieutenant "Red" Cochrane and his crew of the aft 5-inch battery of USS Helena shot down a Japanese D3A dive bomber off Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands. This was the first use of proximity-fuzed shells in combat. Cruiser USS Honolulu was near-missed by three bombs and cruiser HMNZS Achilles was struck by a bomb in her #3 turret, killing 11. ww2dbase [Guadalcanal Campaign | Helena (St. Louis-class) | Honolulu | VT Radio Proximity | Coral Sea, Solomon Islands | CPC]
  • USS Grayback served as beacon ship for the US naval bombardment of Munda Point, New Georgia, Solomon Islands. While on this duty, after nightfall, she picked up six downed airmen from a beach at New Georgia. Commanding officer Edward Stephan would later be awarded a Navy Cross medal for the day's actions. ww2dbase [Grayback | Munda Point, New Georgia | CPC]
  • In the early morning darkness, cruisers USS Nashville, USS St. Louis, and USS Helena (St. Louis-class) with destroyers USS Fletcher and USS O'Bannon conducted a nighttime bombardment of the Japanese-held airstrip at Munda on New Georgia, Solomon Islands. ww2dbase [Nashville | St. Louis | Helena (St. Louis-class) | Walden Ainsworth | Solomon Islands Campaign | New Georgia, Solomon Islands | DS]
  • The Italian Navy Forza Navale Speciale (FNS) was disbanded. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Japanese hospital ship Hikawa Maru departed Yokosuka, Japan for her 9th voyage with the Japanese Navy. ww2dbase [Hikawa Maru | Yokosuka, Kanagawa | CPC]
New Zealand
  • Destroyer USS Shaw arrived at Wellington, New Zealand. ww2dbase [Shaw | Wellington | DS]
United States

5 Jan 1943 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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