Events occurring on Wednesday, January 12, 1944  
  Diplomacy  
  British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and French General Charles de Gaulle began a two-day wartime conference in Marrakesh, Morocco. The discussions centered on the cooperation of a French expeditionary force in the invasion of Europe, the degree of authority of the French committee in the control of civil affairs inside France after the invasion. Churchill and the British wanted the French to avoid such actions against former Vichy supporters that would create “so wide a schism in France that the resultant friction in any territory that might be liberated would hamper our military operations and therefore be a matter of concern for us.”  
   
  The Canadian Legation in the United States was raised to an Embassy and Leighton McCarthy presented his letters of credentials to President Roosevelt as the first Canadian Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the United States.  
   
  The Solomon Islands Campaign  
  The U.S. Army's Americal Division completed its movement to Bougainville in the Solomon Islands.  
   
  The Central Pacific Theater  
  Japanese land attack planes bombed the U.S. advance base at Tarawa, destroying a machine shop, igniting gasoline stores, and causing light casualties at Mullinix and Hawkins fields.  
   
  PB4Y patrol bombers bombed Japanese shipping in Kwajalein lagoon and sank the gunboat Ikuta Maru.  
   
  U.S. Army Air Forces B-25 Mitchells struck Japanese shipping installations at Maleopap and Wotje in the Marshall Islands and damaged the destroyer IJN Ushio. PBFY Catalinas bombed ground installations.  
   
  Aerial minelaying operations continue in the Marshall Islands as five PBY-5s, flying from Tarawa, mined Tokowa and Torappu channels and the south entrance to Maleolap. One Catalina went on to bomb Jabor but was forced down by antiaircraft fire six miles east of Jaluit.  
   
  The Pacific Theater  
  The Japanese army cargo vessel Kanjo Maru was sunk by a USAAF mine in Takao harbor, Formosa.  
   
  Allied Submarine Warfare in the Pacific  
  The submarine USS Hake (SS 256), commanded by Lt. Commander John C. Broach, torpedoed and sank the 9,547 ton Japanese aircraft transport Nigitsu Maru about 300 nautical miles south-east of Okinawa in the northern reaches of the Philippine Sea south of the Daito Islands.  
   
  The submarine USS Albacore (SS 218), commanded by Lt. Commander James W. Blanchard, torpedoed and sank the 2,629 ton Japanese auxiliary gunboat Choko Maru No.2 about 350 nautical miles southwest of Truk. The Albacore also damaged the small motor gunboat Hayabusa-Tei No.4. The motor gunboat had been under tow by the Choko Maru #2 proceeding from Truk to Rabaul. Gunfire from a Japanese escort latter scuttled the gunboat.  
   
  Espionage  
  An uncensored report printed in the New York Times disclosed: "Like Spain, Portugal teems with German agents and in Lisbon they are as ubiquitous as bootleggers were during prohibition in America. Their red necks gleam in every bar and fine restaurant . . ."  
   
  Ships Commissioned  
  A ship's commissioning was when the ship was handed over, post fittings and trials, to the end user which, in this case, was a combatant navy.  
  The frigate HMS Inglis (K 570) was commissioned. Her first commander was Lt. Richard S. Beveridge.  
   
  The minesweeper USS Devastator (AM 318) was commissioned.  
   
  The destroyer escort USS Marsh (DE 699) was commissioned. Her first commander was Lt. Commander P. M. Fenton.  
   
  The destroyer escort USS Price (DE 332) was commissioned. Her first commander was Lt. Commander J. W. Higgins, Jr.  
     
   
  January 1944 Calendar  
   
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