The German minister, Arthur Zimmermann, sends a telegram through the German ambassador in Washington to the German ambassador in Mexico offering Mexico an alliance against the United States. He proposes that Mexico will be assisted in retaking Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. The telegram is intercepted and decoded by British intelligence and given to President Woodrow Wilson. The telegram becomes instrumental in forming American public opinion against Germany and for entering the war as Wilson gives it to the press in March. America will enter the war five weeks later.
Death of Gustav von Bohlen und Halbach near Salzburg, Austria. He married the heiress of the Krupp family (steel and arms), Bertha Krupp, and gained control of Krupp Industries. He then added the name Krupp to his name. So important was Krupp Industries to the economy that the Kaiser himself chose the Prussian diplomat, von Bolen und Halbach, as Bertha Krupp’s husband to manage the firm.