4 Jul 1942
  • Japanese hospital ship Hikawa Maru arrived at Menado, Celebes. ww2dbase [Hikawa Maru | CPC]
  • Allied reconnaissance reported that the Japanese had begun building an airfield on Guadalcanal. ww2dbase [Guadalcanal Campaign | CPC]
  • The raid on Dieppe was postponed due to weather. ww2dbase [Attack on Dieppe | TH]
  • German submarine U-129 sank Soviet tanker Tuapse in the Caribbean Sea; 8 were killed, 36 survived. On the same day, U-575 sank US ship Norlandia also in the Caribbean Sea; 9 were killed, 21 survived. ww2dbase [Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico Campaigns | CPC]
  • German armed merchant cruiser Thor stopped and captured empty Norwegian tanker Madrono 1,500 miles east of Madagascar; a prize crew sailed the renamed tanker Rossbach for Japan. ww2dbase [Thor | CPC]
  • After dispersal of Convoy PQ17, HMS Cumberland covered passage of returning Convoy QP13. ww2dbase [Cumberland | DS]
  • Lieutenant Commander John C. Atkeson relieved Lieutenant Commander Franklin Karns as USS Bailey’s Commanding Officer. The belief at the time was that LtCdr Karns was relieved due to the grounding incident one month earlier. ww2dbase [Bailey | DS]
  • Rear Admiral Walden Ainsworth assumed the duties as Commander, Destroyers, Pacific Fleet. ww2dbase [Walden Ainsworth | DS]
  • USS Triton sank Japanese destroyer Nenohi 5 miles south of Agattu, Aleutian Islands; 188 were killed, 38 survived. ww2dbase [Triton | Agattu | CPC]
Arctic Ocean
  • Allied convoy PQ-17 was attacked by 24 He 111 aircraft of German Luftwaffe unit I./KG 26 about 60 miles north of Bear Island (Bjørnøya), Norway, fatally damaging US freighter Christopher Newport which would later be scuttled by a British submarine (3 were killed, 47 survived); at 1930 hours, another attack wave came upon the convoy, causing no damage; at 2020 hours, the convoy was attacked by 25 aircraft, sinking British freighter Navarino, sinking US freighter William Hooper (3 were killed, 55 survived), and damaging Soviet tanker Azerbaijan; at 2100 hours, believing that German battleships might be in the area, PQ-17 was ordered to scatter and the convoy escorts were withdrawn. Sailing in the opposite direction, QP-13 broke up to two convoys, one of which ran into a minefield; several ships struck mines and sank (British minesweeper HMS Niger (149 were killed), freighter Hybert, freighter Heffron, freighter Massmar (17 were killed), and Soviet passenger ship Rodina (several family members of Soviet diplomats were killed)), and several others were damaged (civilian commodore's ship American Robin, freighter Exterminator, and freighter John Randolph); HMS Hussar was able to lead the survivors out of the minefield. ww2dbase [Arctic Convoys | Barents Sea | AC, CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • Italian submarines Morosini and Giuseppe Finzi reported that due to the damage sustained in the accidental collission that took place in the Atlantic Ocean on 1 Jul 1942, the planned fuel transfer between the two submarines could not take place. ww2dbase [Morosini | Giuseppe Finzi | CPC]
  • The American Volunteer Group of the China Air Force was disbanded. Its P-40E and Tomahawk fighters were transferred to USAAF 23rd Fighter Group, which was the AVG's successor. ww2dbase [P-40 Warhawk | CPC]
  • Five B-25 bombers of US 10th Air Force attacked Tianhe Airfield in Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, China, damaging buildings, runways, and several aircraft on the ground. ww2dbase [Tianhe Airfield | Guangzhou, Guangdong | CPC]
  • Axis tanks continued the attack on Ruweisat Ridge near El Alamein, Egypt, making little progress; British aircraft flew 900 sorties on this day against the Axis offensive. The Allies, believing the Axis forces had lost their initial momentum, launched a limited offensive with elements of the South African 1st Division and New Zealand 2nd Division toward the Ruweisat Ridge. ww2dbase [First Battle of El Alamein | El Alamein | CPC]
Germany Netherlands
  • Six American aircrews from the 15th Bomb Squadron (Light) operated six RAF Boston bombers to accompany six similar RAF aircraft on a bombing mission against enemy airfields in the Netherlands. This was the first USAAF Eighth Air Force operation of the war and resulted in its first casualties and first medal awards, for two aircraft failed to return from the mission. For returning home on one engine from this mission, Captain Charles Kegelman would be personally awarded the Distinguished Service Cross by Major General Spaatz, the then commander of the Eighth Air Force. ww2dbase [Bombing of Cities in France and Low Countries | TH, AC]
Poland Russia
  • While the Soviet 5th Guards Tank Army was moved to Voronezh, Russia to aid the city's defense, Adolf Hilter diverted the German 6th Army toward Stalingrad. ww2dbase [Caucasus Campaign | Voronezh | CPC]
  • Garland completed her temporary repairs at Murmansk, Russia and departed for Troon, Scotland, United Kingdom with convoy QP-13. ww2dbase [Garland | Murmansk | CPC]
US Pacific Islands
  • The US Navy Pacific Fleet established an advance base for submarines at Midway Atoll. ww2dbase [Midway Bases | Midway | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 4 Jul 1942
American prisoners of war celebrated American Independence Day in Casisange prison camp at Malaybalay, Mindanao, against Japanese regulations, 4 Jul 1942British troops digging defensive trenches near El Alamein, Egypt, 4 Jul 1942New Zealand Brigadier Howard Kippenberger and Captain Allan McPhail inspecting a destroyed Cannone da 90/53 anti-aircraft gun formerly of the Italian Ariete Division, North Africa, 4 Jul 1942 or shortly after

4 Jul 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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