Calendar and Summary for April 1942  
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5   6   7   8   9   10   11
12   13   14   15   16   17   18
19   20   21   22   23   24   25
26   27   28   29   30        
  March 1942 May 1942  
  Summary of Significant Events for April 1942  
  The 16 Army B-25 bombers of the upcoming Halsey-Doolittle Raid were loaded aboard the USS Hornet (CV-12).  With support from artillery and aircraft, the Japanese launched their all out final offensive to take Bataan with a major infantry assault on the Orion-Bagac line.  The Japanese Combined Fleet under Vice Admiral Chuichi Nagumo attacked Colombo, Ceylon.  The heavy cruisers HMS Cornwall and HMS Dorsetshire were sunk in the Indian Ocean by the Japanese.  India suffered its first air raid when Japanese planes bombed Bay of Bengal ports.  Japanese forces made an amphibious landing at Bougainville.  In the largest RAF air raid to date, 272 bombers attacked Hamburg. 78,000 U.S. and Filipino forces on Bataan surrendered.  The Bataan Death March began.  The Japanese attacked the harbor at Trincomalee, Ceylon.  Marshal Henri-Philippe Petain reinstated Pierre Laval as Vice Premier of the Vichy French government.  The George Cross was awarded to the island of Malta by King George VI.  On April 16 Kapitänleutnant Friedrich Guggenberger of the U-81 sank 4 vessels near Beirut in the eastern Mediterranean Sea.  RAF Bomber Command conducted a rare daylight bombing mission against the MAN diesel engine factory at Augsburg in Bavaria.  The U.S. Navy seized Treasure Island from the City of San Francisco.  French General Henri Giraud escaped from the mountain fortress of Festung Königstein.  The Americans launched 16 B-25 bombers from the decks of the USS Hornet and attacked Tokyo and other targets in Japan.  The "Stars and Stripes" restarted publication.  During a press conference U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt told reporters that the American planes that bombed Japan came from Shangra-La.  The Luftwaffe bombed Exeter beginning the “Baedeker Blitz.”  With the consent of the Free French government, U.S. troops landed on New Caledonia.  A Gallup Poll indicated that people preferred the term “World War II” for the ongoing global war.  77 ships (401,429 tons) were sunk and 12 ships (95,905 tons) were damaged by U-boats during April 1942.  
  Events occurring in April 1942 with no specific dates  
  The German Nuclear Research Program  
  The Leipzig L-IV reactor demonstrated neutron generation of 13 percent. German theoretical physicist Dr. Werner Heisenberg predicted this design could be critical with 5 metric tons of heavy water and 10 tons of solid uranium metal. The reactor was destroyed by a fire on June 23. After the accident Heisenberg would leave permanently for Berlin and reactor research in Leipzig ceased.  

The objective of is to provide a day by day account of the events that lead up to and were part of the greatest conflict known to mankind. There are accounts for the activities of each particular day and timelines for subjects and personalities. It is the of this website intent to provide an unbiased account of the war. Analysis, effects caused by an event, or prior or subsequent pertinent events are presented separately and indicated as text that is italicized.

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