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General Alfred Jodl, Hitler's Chief of Staff, claims that "from the start of 1942 on Hitler knew victory was no longer attainable." (P. Johnson, p.397)
January 3
Hitler admits to the Japanese Ambassador, General Oshima Hiroshi, that he does not know "how America could be defeated." (P. Johnson, p.396) 258
258 While there is no quoted response from Oshima, Johnson suggests that "the Japanese didn't know either." (P. Johnson, p.396)
April 18
Doolittle Raid on Tokyo, Kobe (fuel reservoirs), and Yokohama. Sixteen B-25 Army bombers, led by Lt. Col. James "Jimmy" Doolittle lift off the U.S.S. Hornet, fly "over hundreds of miles of stormy seas in aircraft no larger than a modern jet fighter," and are the first American bombers to hit the Japanese mainland astounding the Japanese who thought their island safe from U.S. attack. None of the bombers are shot down (some sustain damage) - they either land in China or the Soviet Union, or crash after running out of gas260. The "moral uplift of the raid [...] for the Allies was great." The Japanese massacre 250,000261 Chinese within two weeks in retaliation - almost as many lives as total U.S. losses in WWII (U.S. losses were 295,000 in both theaters). The apoplectic rage that could lead to the wanton murders of 250,000 civilians must be seen as both a reaction to the horror of Japanese soil being bombed, and as a warning to the Americans as to what awaited them. General Chiang Kai-shek, objects to American plans to use Chinese air strips for the raid. Chiang worried that the Chinese would be the victims of Japanese rage following the attack. (Daws, p.277; Weinberg, p.332; Rose, p.73; Hoyt, p.277) (See also April-May 1942)
260 General Doolittle's autobiography discusses Lt. Commander Stephen Jurika, the Naval intelligence officer on the U.S.S. Hornet, who briefed the crews who flew the Doolittle Raid. Jurika gave the crews information on Japanese industry and the layout of various cities. Jurika had been the Assistant Naval Attaché at the American Embassy in Tokyo from 1939 until shortly before the war. Doolittle reports that Jurika's source for his intelligence information was the Soviet Naval Attaché in Tokyo. Therefore, Sorge was the source of some of these maps as he provided the Soviet Embassy ("Serge") with maps of several Japanese cities with anti-aircraft and searchlight positions, information vital for a successful U.S. attack. The raid was the basis for the film 30 Seconds Over Tokyo (Doolittle, I Could Never Be So Lucky Again, p.265). Commander John Ford (later Rear Admiral, U.S.N.R.), the famous Hollywood director, was aboard the Hornet to film the planes leaving for the Doolittle Raid. (Rose, The Ship That Held the Line, p.68) (See also October 10, 1941)
261 This is perhaps the fastest rate of genocidal execution in world history - faster than Mao, Stalin, Hitler, or Pol Pot.