War in Malaya
War in Malaya – even the jungle became a battleground.

War News – December 18, 1941 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection

As the fever of War swept over most of the world on this December 18th in 1941, the reporting of it settled into a certain rhythm, a kind of endless repetition of hot-spots and casualty counts.

America was still coming to grips with being on a war-footing, and reports of air raids in cities like San Francisco were being looked at with more overreaction than reaction to actual threats.

The Pacific was a simmering cauldron of invasion and attack – from Malaya to The Philippines, to Borneo and islands between, news of Japanese landings and counterattacks from British and American forces.

Reports from Honolulu, Hawaii told of rapid adjustment to a war footing, with careful scrutiny of aliens, who now must carry Alien Registration cards at all times. Further, if Aliens want to change their residence or occupation, they needed to get special permits. The orders applied to Japanese, Germans, Italians, Bulgarians and Croatians living in Hawaii at the time. Aside from those restrictions, Aliens were free to go just about anywhere during daylight hours without special permits. Night-time was a different story. Practice Air-Raid drills were taking place in Honolulu and all residents were urge to prepare their own air-raid shelters. In order to prepare for what could be a still-possible invasion, large areas of land, usually used for Sugar Cane crops, was being turned over to use for other crops, insuring a supply of food would be available to the island in case it was cut-off from the mainland.

Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau announced that a Defense Savings Bond committee was to be set up in every county in the nation on January 10th to direct a country-wide canvas to get the 35 million+ wage earners to set aside a regular portion of paychecks for Defense bonds as a precaution against inflation.

All this and a lot more for this 18th day of December of 1941 as broadcast via regular news reports and bulletins from the Red and Blue networks of NBC Radio.

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