- Anglo-Soviet Pact of 1942, a 20 years treay promising co-operation against German aggression.
- Reggae genius Desmond Dekker is born.
- Kim Philby marries second wife Aileen Furse.
- Sebastien Faure dies.
- January 4: Victor Sorge espionage ring member Hisao Funakoshi is arrested in Beijing.
- January 13: In London the Inter Allied Conference on the Punishment of War Crimes issues the "Declaration of St. James." The focus is on atrocities committed by Axis armies on the ground.
- February 14: The British Air Ministry announces a new directive that intensive nighttime bombing of Germany would begin. That meant the bombing of cities rather than of specific military targets.
- February 19: Presdent Roosevelt signs Executive Order 9066, authorizing the relocation of Japanese-Americans from the West Coast.
- March 21: The Manzanar internment camp opens in California.
- March 28-29: 234 British RAF bombers drop incendiary bombs on the German city of Lubeck (popualtion 150,000). Death toll was 320 killed.
- March 31: Newspaper editor and Victor Sorge espionage ring member Yoshio Kawamura is arrested.
- April 17: Heinrich Himmler visits the Warsaw Ghetto in the evening; the Gestapo executes 50 Jewish prisoners in Pawiak prison.
- April 25-26: English city of Bath was bombed by the German Luftwaffe with high explosive and incendiary bombs.
- May: The gas chambers at the Birkenau extermination camp at Auschwitz begin operating.
- May 17: Japanese government first disclosure of information about the Victor Sorge espionage ring to newspapers.
- June 8: Victor Sorge espionage ring member Dr. Tokutaro Yasuda is arrested.
- June 13: Office of the Coordinator of War Information is split into two organizations: Office of War Information (OWI) and Office of Strategic Services (OSS). The OSS is the forerunner of the CIA. The new OSS had 800 employees.
- June 15: Democratic Representative Anthony Coelho is born in Los Baños, Merced County, California. First elected to Congress in 1978.
- July 14: Javier Solana is born in Madrid.
- August 19: Dieppe Raid (Operation Jubilee) by Canadian Army and British Marines.
- September 5: Canadian ore carriers S.S. Saganaga and the S.S. Lord Strathcona sunk by German submarine U-513.
- September 17: Gen. Leslie Groves is ordered to take command of the Manhattan Project.
- October 7: Wehrmacht issues Kommandobefehl or commando order.
- November 11: Case Anton German occupiation of southern France and disbanding of the collaborationist Vichy Government's "Armistice Army."
- November 20: U.S. Senator Joe Biden is born in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
- December 2: A group of scientists, led by Nobel laureate Enrico Fermi launch the nuclear age. The first self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction initiated by man takes place beneath the West Stands of Stagg Field at the University of Chicago. In three years the United States would commit mass murder using the first atomic weapons.
- December 15: Victor Sorge and Ozaki Hotsumi are convicted of violating the Peace Preservation Law and National Defense Security Law.
- December 15: Newspaper editor and Victor Sorge espionage ring member Yoshio Kawamura dies in prison.