January 2, 1945 – Two days into the new year and word from Belgium was one of advancing, pulling back and advancing again. Allied relief was pouring into the Bastogne area, with news that the Germany Armies under von Rundstedt were advancing on the edge of the Saar Basin, some distance from the original breakthrough area, and were conceded to have gained ground. The American 3rd Army was on the offensive near Bastogne – General Patton’s veterans pressed the Germans back for two more miles, in extremely heavy fighting.
The relief of Bastogne put the 3rd Army in possession of a main highway, pointing conveniently in the right direction. That highway was a spine, along which Gen. Patton’s light tanks, infantry and supply vehicles were being moved forward along several points.
It was, however, too soon to say that the German offensive had been stopped. But as of this day, the long Allied battle line in Western Europe hadn’t been altered anywhere, except in the immediate Luxembourg/Belgian breakthrough area. There had been no reports of any allied withdrawal from the banks of the Ruhr River and the weather, for once, has been on the allies’ side.
Meanwhile, in the Pacific; word that a British fleet had arrived in Australia and was to be placed under the command of U.S. Admiral Nimitz as part of a joint effort, along with Australia to begin the process of taking back areas captured by the Japanese.
In Washington – Congress was getting ready to reconvene after the holiday recess. Anticipated areas up for business was the ratifying of American Foreign Policy. The struggle was rumored to be intense, for position on the most important single group on Capitol Hill; the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. There were five vacancies to be filled; three Democratic and two Republican. And considerations were being made over who would take those empty places. The unofficial understanding was that no two Senators from the same party and the same state would be appointed to major committee assignments.
And that’s a sample of what went on, this second day of a new year in 1945, as presented by NBC Radio’s News Of The World.