Japan hits British and U.S. defenses

By RICHARD D. WILSON  |  December 09 1941
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MANILA, Dec. 9, 1941 (UP) - Japan has hurled attacks against all parts of the Orient in a Nipponese blitz which crashed against British and American defenses principally. At the same time Japan claims to have wrung an armistice from Thailand.

Military objectives in the Manila area underwent stiff bombing attacks and the Japanese claimed spectacular air battle victories.

From Singapore, British jungle fighters reportedly were locked in a struggle of annihilation against Japanese invaders who landed in the Malaya-Thailand border region and opened a southward push toward Singapore.

Japanese bombs killed 60 and wounded 138 persons in Singapore in raids which reportedly were beaten off with light casualties and damage.

The British said confused and difficult fighting was raging around the Kohta-Bahru airdrome only 10 miles from the northern terminus of the Singapore railway in northern Malaya.

The Royal air force bombed, strafed and torpedo attacked Japanese transports, hitting and setting fire to at least two, it was said.

The British believed that Japanese to be "in possession of southern Thailand" and the Thailand radio was reported to have broadcast that the cabinet decided to permit the Japanese to enter Thailand. Tokyo officially announced that an agreement has been reached for passage of Japanese troops across Thailand at two points.

Elsewhere the British radio reported Hongkong bombed for the third consecutive day. The official Netherlands news agency said a large part of the Dutch merchant marine temporarily has been requisitioned but other transport services remain normal.

Netherlands Indies newspapers staunchly supported the Netherlands government's declaration in London of war against Japan and expressed complete confidence of victory.

The Rome radio reported that a total blackout was ordered in Tokyo and other Japanese cities were partly blacked out.

However, the position of the oriental theater of the war so far was not completely clear - it has been announced in Washington that 3,000 casualties occurred in Hawaii alone and also that at least one big battleship capsized in Pearl Harbor and that American airplanes, small craft, passenger liners, transports, fuel and war supplies have been damaged, destroyed or sunk. Antiaircraft batteries have been active in major Pacific outposts.

What happened to the smaller isolated positions such as Guam, Wake and Midway islands and the Aleutians is not known.

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