27 December 1941
El Haseit , Libya : At the battle of El Haseia in Libya, German tanks from recently reinforced and reformed 15th and 21st Panzer Divisions flanked British 22nd Armoured Brigade in a suprise attack before Agadebia , destroying many British tanks, but failed to break through.
Lofoten Islands , Norway : British Commandos and Norwegian troops completed the Operation Anklet raid in the Lofoten Islands in northern Norway, embarking a number of ships to return to Britain along with 29 prisoners of war and 200 Norwegian volunteers who wished to joined the forces of the Norwegian government-in-exile.
Vaasgo Island , Norway : Royal Navy cruiser HMS Kenya and four Royal Navy destroyers bombarded German defenses on Vaagso Island, southern Norway in Operation Archery at dawn. Shortly after the bombardment, 560 British Commandos and 12 Norwegian troops landed, wiped out German local garrison of 180 German mountain troops and 65 men strong local German naval detachment , destroyed fish oil production and storage facilities and four shore batteries , sank six German cargo vessels and three naval anti submarine patrol ships in the harbour totaling 17.000 tons , and captured a complete German naval code book as well as total 98 German prisoners and Quisling supporter Norwegian prisoners and returned back to UK. In this operation, the Allies suffered 21 British and 1 Norwegian killed, while the Germans suffered 150 killed.
Hitler, angered by the range and unexpectedness of the attack, began to talk of turning the whole North Sea, Channel and Atlantic coastlines under his control into an impregnable fortress: ‘Fortress Europe’. Not knowing where an Allied attack might come, and faced now with the inevitability of eventual American participation in it, Hitler ordered the construction of coastal fortification from the border of Norway and Finland, above the Arctic Circle, to the border between France and Spain in the Bay of Biscay.
Berlin, Germany : There was another change of German plans on December 27; Dr Todt, in conversation that day with Albert Speer, insisted that communication and transportation conditions in Russia, from which he had just returned, were so difficult, and the ‘discouragement and despair’ among the German soldiers so great, that grandiose architectural building plans would have to be suspended, in terms of priority use of skilled manpower, until the roads of the Ukraine could be put in order. Staff and workmen who were still ‘frivolously engaged’, as Speer later wrote, in working on road construction in Germany would have to be sent to Russia to repair and build the roads there, without which neither supplies nor men could move forward. Todt told Speer he had seen ‘stalled hospital trains in which the wounded had frozen to death, and had witnessed the misery of the troops in villages and hamlets cut off by snow and cold’.
Philippines : Japanese air units bombed Manila, Philippine Islands while 6 US PBY Catalina aircraft attacked Japanese warships at Jolo (4 would be shot down). On land, US and Philippine forces withdrew to the Santa-Ignacia-Gerona-Guimba-San Jose line 30 miles south of Lingayen Gulf, Luzon.
US cargo ship Taurus was bombed by Japanese aircraft and scuttled in Pasig River.
Leningrad , Russia : German 250th Infantry Division of Spanish volunteers repulsed a heavy Soviet attack about 100 kilometers south of Leningrad, Russia which began on 23 Dec 1941.
Dutch East Indies : British and Indian troops originally based in Kuching, Sarawak, island of Borneo fled into Dutch territory. To the north, Japanese troops captured the Tambelan Islands, Dutch East Indies, which was the first Dutch territorial loss in the Pacific War.
South China Sea : Japanese cargo ship Nojima Maru was torpedoed and sunk by US submarine USS Perch at south west of Hong Kong
British Malaya : Japanese bombers attacked Kuala Lumpur, Malaya. Meanwhile, Japanese troops from 25th Army advanced toward Kampar in western Malaya and Kuantan on the east coast. General Sir Henry Pownell suceeds Vice Air Marshal Sir Brooke-Popham as British Commander in Chief Far East
Crimea , Ukraine : 46th Infantry Division of the German 11th Army counterattacked the Soviet beachheads on the Kerch Peninsula, Russia, but the attacks failed to stop further Soviet reinforcements from the sea. Soviet troopship Penay and Soviet minesweeper Kiziltash were bombed and sunk by Luftwaffe JU-87 dive bombers with loss of 200 Soviet troops and naval personnel.
Pacific Ocean : Japanese submarine I-25 shelled and sank unarmed American tanker Connecticut about 10 miles west of the mouth of the Columbia River off the American states of Oregon and Washington.