At 3.40 AM, British battleship HMS Prince of Wales and battlecruiser HMS Repulse are spotted by Japanese submarine I-58 which misses the ships with 5 torpedoes. From 11.17 AM to 12.40 PM, 50 miles East of Kuantan, Malaya, waves of Japanese bombers and torpedo bombers sink HMS Repulse at 12.33 PM (513 killed) and HMS Prince of Wales at 1.18 PM (327 killed). Destroyers HMS Electra, Express and Vampire rescue 1862 survivors.
Malaya. After the failure of Krohcol and Laycol to impede the Japanese advance from Thailand into Northwestern Malaya, British hurriedly prepare the half-finished defensive line at Jitra (10 miles inside Malaya). They send 1st Battalion/14th Punjab Regiment and 2nd Battalion /1st Gurkha Rifles to stall the Japanese at Changlun and Asun, halfway between Jitra and the Thai border. At 9 PM, 14th Punjabis ambush Japanese troops at Changlun, destroying 2 tanks with anti-tank guns, and then pull back South towards Asun.
At 4 AM, Japanese land 5000 troops at 3 sites on the American-held island of Guam, an important staging post 1300 miles East of the Philippines. At 6 AM, Naval Governor of Guam, Rear Admiral McMillin, surrenders by sounding a car horn 3 times.
Philippines. Japanese troops land at Aparri on the North coast of Luzon and Vigan on the East side of the island. Bombing of Cavite Navy Yard, near Manila, Luzon, damages US submarine USS Sealion (4 killed) and sinks US minesweeper USS Bittern. USS Sealion will be scuttled on December 25.
Moscow counteroffensive. South of Moscow, Soviet troops complete the encirclement of German 45th, 95th and 134th Infantry Divisions at Livny. The Germans will eventually breakout after several days, despite heavy casualties and the suicide of General Conrad von Cochenhausen, commander of 134th Infantry Division.
Just before midnight 200 miles Southwest of Ireland, U-130 sinks 3 steamers in convoy SC-57 (British SS Kurdistan and SS Kirnwood and Egyptian SS Star of Luxor.