8 Apr 1942
  • Japanese troops based in Rabaul landed in Western New Britain. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Japanese troops overran Chinese 200th Division and New 22nd Division defensive positions at Yedashe, Burma. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • The Japanese Navy officially agreed to the German request to conduct submarine raids against Allied shipping in the Indian Ocean, although the submarines were already in position or underway. Later that day, Japanese submarine I-3 sank British collier Fultala 200 miles off the southern tip of India at 0150 hours. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Italian bombers sank British minesweeping whaler HMS Svana and anti-submarine whaler HMS Thorgrim off Alexandria, Egypt. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Ivan Bagramyan was named the chief of staff of the Southwestern Front. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • German submarine U-84 sank Yugoslavian ship Nemanja 300 miles east of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, United States at 0457 hours; 13 were killed, 34 survived. Just 10 miles off St. Simons Island, Georgia, United States, U-123 damaged US tanker Oklahoma (killing 19 of 37) at 0752 hours and US tanker Esso Baton Rouge (killing 3 of 62) at 0844 hours. Far to the south, Italian submarine Calvi sank US tanker Eugene V. R. Thayer with a torpedo and 120 shells from her deck gun 20 miles off the northern coast of Brazil. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • The 2,374-ton steam merchant Ara was a Swedish refrigerated cargo steamer that was mined in the North Sea near the Island of Borkum, Helgoland, Germany. ww2dbase [HM]
Australian New Guinea Ceylon
  • A Catalina flying boat spotted a Japanese carrier fleet approaching Trincomalee, Ceylon. On this news, British aircraft carrier HMS Hermes and Australian destroyer HMAS Vampire departed Trincomalee in an attempt to escape the impending attack. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • The P-40E fighter saw its first combat and first victory in Asia as Flight Leader Robert Little of 1st Pursuit Squadron shot down a Ki-43 aircraft over Leiyun (Loiwing), Yunnan Province, China. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
Dutch East Indies Germany
  • 272 RAF bombers (177 Wellington, 41 Hampden, 22 Stirling, 13 Manchester, 12 Halifax, and 7 Lancaster aircraft) conducted a raid on Hamburg, Germany; 4 Wellington and 1 Manchester aircraft were lost in this attack. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Friedrich-Wilhelm Müller was awarded Oak Leaves to his Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Enterprise departed Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii to make rendezvous with USS Hornet, which was en route to strike the Japanese home islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • USS Pollack arrived at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii, ending her second war patrol. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • Joseph Rochefort's cryptanalytic team in Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii intercepted a Japanese Navy message that assigned fleet carrier Kaga to the campaign against a location with code name RZP. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • Allied convoy PQ-14 departed Reykjavík, Iceland; it was consisted of 24 merchant ships, escorted by 2 minesweepers and 3 anti-submarine trawlers. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Mooring vessel HMS Moor was serving as a boom defence vessel with 29 Maltese on board when she struck a mine at the harbour entrance of Valetta, Malta at 1715 hours. She broke up and sank instantly. Only one person survived, diver Toni Mercieca, who was picked up by a boat from the gate vessel Westgate and conveyed to Bighi Naval Hospital. ww2dbase [HM]
  • American submarine Seadragon delivered 20 tons of food to Corregidor in the Philippine Islands; on the return trip, she evacuated the final 21 radio intelligence personnel from the US Navy Station CAST facility. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Japanese bombers and fighters attacked US II Corps positions digging in along the Alangan River at Bataan, Philippine Islands at 1100 hours, but these positions successfully repulsed the first Japanese assault shortly after; the Japanese would return with tank support, however, overrunning the line. The US Commander of the Luzon Force ordered all munition dumps at Mariveles Habor at Bataan destroyed, and medical staff began withdrawing to Corregidor island. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Soviet forces opened a railway link into Leningrad in northern Russia. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • A US delegation led by Harry Hopkins and George Marshall arrived in Britain to discuss US and British strategy on opening a second front in Europe by invading France. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
Photo(s) dated 8 Apr 1942
Nose art of B-25B Mitchell bomber Bombs aboard USS Hornet, Apr 1942; note 100-pound bombs for Navy dive bombers in the foreground and 500-pound bombs for Army B-25 bombers in backgroundNose art of B-25B Mitchell bomber Portrait of Brigadier Walter Bedell Smith, Eisenhower

8 Apr 1942 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
"Since peace is now beyond hope, we can but fight to the end."

Chiang Kaishek, 31 Jul 1937