Posts Tagged ‘WWII February’
1938 Japan refuses to reveal naval data requested by the U.S. and Britain.
1940 First deportation of German Jews into occupied Poland.
Germany and Russia agree new trade pact, that provides for the delivery of vital war materials (grains, oil, strategic minerals) by the Russians, in return for German manufactured goods.
Anthony Eden greets the first Australian and New Zealand troops arriving in Suez.
1941 The British foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden and General Sir John Dill, Chief of the Imperial General Staff leave London for a tour of the Balkan capitals in order to try and establish an anti-axis pact. However, Yugoslavia refuses to see them and Turkey refuses their proposals. Only Greece shows and interest.
Again, the Italians make further breakout attempts, which all fail. Later in the day the Italians surrender 20,000 men, 200 guns and 120 tanks to just 3,000 British troops.
Anthony Eden makes a speech parodying Winston Churchills famous ‘Battle of Britain’ speech. He says “Never has so much been surrendered, by so many, to so few”.
General Gariboldi is the new Italian Army Commander in North Africa.
Erwin Rommel arrives in Tripoli, Libya with a Panzer and Motorized Infantry Division. He assumes command of the Deutsches Africa Korps.
Rommel receives assistance from the Fliegerkorps X and long range aircraft from Sicily.
Churchill congratulates Wavell for his success, and orders him to prepare to help the Greeks.
German planes attack Benghazi, the first action by the Luftwaffe in Africa.
1942 At 11.00 hours, British aircraft spot the Scharnhorst and Gneisenau and Prinz Eugen as they enter the straits of Dover. At 12.00 hours the British launch MTB attacks against Admiral Ciliax’s squadron, but were forced to fire at extreme range and so missed. An hour later at 13.00 hours the British again launch torpedo attacks, this time using six Swordfish aircraft, but five were shot down and all torpedo’s missed. At 14.30 hours the battleship Scharnhorst hits a mine off the Dutch coast. The mine inflicts only minor damage and the Scharnhorst is able to continue towards Germany. A short time later the British again launch attacks against the three German ships, this time using destroyers from the port of Harwich and aircraft from both Bomber and Coastal commands, but without success. At 20.35 hours the battleship Gneisenau hits a mine, while at 20.55 hours the Scharnhorst hits its second mine of the day, although both ships are able to continue towards Kiel.
1943 Rostov is captured by Russians. German troops evacuate Krasnodar and reach the defensive positions in the Kuban bridgehead.
German bombers attacked port of Bari on Adriatic, sinking 16 freighters including an American ship carrying poison mustard gas shells, causing heavy casualties in the port.
Rommel and Von Arnim’s forces launch a counter attack against the American 2nd Corps in central Tunisia, forcing them back in some disarray.
Wingate’s first Chindit guerrilla campaign begins behind the Japanese lines in Burma.
VMF-124 lands on Guadalcanal, becoming the first Corsair squadron deployed for combat.
1944 The Red Army recaptures Luga.
1945 British and Canadians troops advancing from Southeast Holland take Cleve in western Germany.
Simultaneous announcements in Moscow, London and Washington about the Yalta agreement. Agreement is reached about the allied occupation of Germany, the founding of the United Nations, the “resettlement” of the inhabitants of the eastern German territories to be ceded to Poland and the entry of the Soviet Union into the war against Japan.
Thus far, the Kriegsmarine has evacuated 374,00 German refugees by sea from East and West Prussia.
The British 20th Indian Division crosses the river Irrawaddy Southwest of Mandalay.
Peru declares war against Germany.Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: December 4 WWII Today: April 13 WWII Today: June 12
1940 Soviet troops finally breach the Mannerheim line, forcing the Finns to withdraw to a secondary defense line.
The Soviet Union and Germany sign a treaty to exchange Soviet raw materials for German manufactured goods.
1941 Former GOP presidential candidate Wendell Willkie testifies in favor of Roosevelt’s Lend-Lease Bill in Congressional hearings.
Hanover is bombed by the RAF.
British forces advance into Italian Somaliland in East Africa.
Three Stirlings of No. 7 Sqn carry out the first RAF four-engined bomber attack against oil depots in Rotterdam.
1942 The Channel Dash (Operation Cerberus). At 23.00 hours, Admiral Ciliax orders his squadron, which includes the battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau and the cruiser Prinz Eugen, to leave Brest and dash through the English Channel for the safety of Kiel in Germany.
Japanese troops cross the river Salween in Burma. This caused concern for the commander on the 17th Indian Division, Lieutenant General John Smyth, who felt that his troops might be cut off. He urged Burma Army commander, Lieutenant General Hutton to allow him to withdraw across the river Sittang. However, he was ordered to hold firm on the river Bilin.
The US Army occupies Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao in Dutch West Indies with permission from Free Dutch.
US Army begins construction on Camp Stoneman in Pittsburg, California.
US War Production Board takes DuPont’s supply of nylon.
In Montréal, French-Canadians riot against conscription plans.
1944 German relief forces are now just 10 mile from the Korsun pocket.
Americans troops at Cassino are relieved by Indian and New Zealand forces. The allies are pushed back to final defence line at Anzio.
The Australians take Rooke Island between Huon and New Britain.
1945 The Red Army the encirclement of the fortress city of Kastrin on the Oder.
The meeting of the President Franklin Roosevelt, Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Marshal Joseph Stalin in Yalta, adjourns.
On way home from Yalta, Roosevelt meets with kings Farouk of Egypt, Haile Selassie of Ethiopia, and Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia, but is unable to convince them to allow Jewish settlement in Palestine.
Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: November 6 WWII Today: September 7 WWII Today: December 20
1939 Japanese occupy island of Hainan in French Indochina.
1940 Over 4000 members of American Youth Congress march in Washington to protest US being drawn into imperialistic war; President Roosevelt angrily confronts them.
1941 London severs diplomatic relations with Romania.
The RAF attacks the oil storage tanks at Rotterdam in the Netherlands. The raid sees the operational debut of the RAF’s first 4-engine heavy bomber, the Short Stirling.
Iceland is attacked by German planes.
The RAF makes its first operational drop of airborne forces (Operation Colossus). Six Whitleys of No. 58 Sqn drop 38 men to attack two aqueducts at Treviso in southern Italy.
1942 The war halts civilian car production at Ford.
The former French liner Normandie capsized in New York Harbor a day after it caught fire while being refitted for the U.S.Navy.
Wavell makes his last visit to Singapore, but by now there was nothing he could do to alter the outcome.
First meeting of Pacific War Council in London with Dutch, New Zealand, Australian and UK representatives.
1944 The Russians begin to lay down a tremendous artillery barrage against the Korsun pocket, in an attempt to force its surrender.
The allies announce that southern Italy is to be handed over to Italian government jurisdiction.
The Japanese combined fleet leaves Truk for Palau.
Australian and Americans troops link at Saidor in New Guinea.
1945 The U.S. First Army captures the seventh and most important Ruhr dam.
Soviet sub S-13 sinks German transport General Steuben, killing 4500 military personnel fleeing East Prussia.
The 2nd Belorussian Fronts attack towards Neustett is halted by desperate German counter-attacks. The 1st Ukrainian front reaches the Neisse encircling Glogau. Liegnitz is captured by the 1st Ukrainian Front. The remaining defenders of Budapest, some 16,000 men, try to break out from Budapest, although most are killed or captured.
B-29s hit the Tokyo area.Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: January 7 Words At War: Fair Stood for France WWII Today: December 22
1941 Admiral Darlan becomes Vichy Vice-Premier.
In a radio broadcast, Churchill warns Bulgaria against joining the Tripartite pact.
U-boats and Fw 200 Condor bombers sink 5 of 16 ships in Allied Convoy HG-53 off the Azores (3 more will be lost in the coming days).
British take El Agheila, Libya, but the advance halts.
1942 By dawn the Japanese 5th and 18th Divisions have firmly established themselves and begin to advance south-east towards Singapore city.
French liner Normandie, which had been seized by the US and renamed the troopship USS Lafayette, burns at pier in New York, capsizes next day.
US institutes War Savings Time: year-round daylight savings time.
US Department of Justice requires German, Italian, and Japanese nationals to register for Certificates of Identification by Feb. 28.
Britain begins to ration soap (4 oz/month).
1943 The Red Army captures Belgorod.
US secures Guadalcanal; in the campaign, 1700 Americans killed and 40,000 Japanese.
President Roosevelt orders a 48-hr work week in war plants.
1944 The Germans capture Aprilia in the Anzio beachhead.
1945 British and Canadians troops smash the first of the main Siegfried Line defence zones. The last Rhine bridge is blown in the Colmar Pocket. Half the German Nineteenth Army were evacuated, but General De Lattre’s forces have taken 22,000 German prisoners since the 20th January.
US Seventh & French Armies clear Colmar Pocket and Alsatian Plain and drive Germans over Rhine south of Strasbourg, France.
The Red Army encircles Elbing and Posen.
In rare sub vs. sub combat and the only documented case in naval history where both were submerged, British submarine Venturer sinks U-864 off Norway.Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: March 14 WWII Today: March 5 WWII Today: May 1
1941 Laval declines Petain’s offer of Cabinet seat in the Vichy Government.
The first convoy of the newly formed Afrika Korps under the command of Lieutenant General Rommel leaves Naples for Tripoli in Libya.
Force H from Malta bombards Genoa, without hindrance from the Italian Navy or Air force.
The House of Representatives passes H.R. 1776 by a vote of 260 to 165.
1942 The Soviet North West Front finally cut all land communication for 90,000 troops of the German 2nd and 10th Corps at Demyansk, as the 11th and 1st Shock Armies link up on the river Lovat, about 25 miles to the west of Demyansk.
The Japanese land on the western side of Singapore Island, encountering only minimal resistance.
1943 The Russians take Kursk and continue their advance.
Japanese complete their evacuation of Guadalcanal.
1944 The Australians complete the occupation of the Huon Peninsula in New Guinea.
Plans for invasion of France, Operation ‘Overlord’ are confirmed.
The Russians capture of Nikopol. The surrounded German forces in the Korsun pocket are invited to surrender by the Russians.
The RAF uses a massive 12,000b bomb ‘Tall-Boy’, in a raid on the GnÃ´me-et-RhÃ´ne works in Limoges.
The Australians complete the occupation of the Huon Peninsula in New Guinea.
1945 50,000 British and Canadians troops with 500 tanks and 1,034 guns launch a new offensive into the Reichswald, to the Southeast of Nijmegen.
Koniev breaks out of his Oder bridgehead north of Breslau, with six armies.
Generalmajor Karl Marthinsen, the head of the State Police is assassinated in his car at Blindernveien, Oslo by the resistance movement, Milorg. The Germans execute 29 Norwegians in retaliation.
UK civilian war casualties up to September 1944 are reported as 57,468 killed and 89,178 injured.
Paraguay declares war on Germany.Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: January 15 WWII Today: December 25 Words At War: Captain Retread
1940 British railroads are nationalized.
1941 The Italian troops stay between Agedabia and El-Agheila.
In Libya, the British are victorious at Beda Fomm; 20,000 troops of the Italian Tenth Army surrender.
General Graziani ask Mussolini for substitution as a commander of the Italian forces at North Africa, and as Libyan Governor.
1942 After just over 2 weeks of frenetic action, Rommel’s counter-offensive comes to a halt in front of the Gazala line, a series of self supporting fortified boxes running south from Gazala for 100 miles to Bir Hacheim. Although not complete, it presents too much of an obstacle for the Afrika Korps who by this time are running low on fuel and reserves.
Lt. General Percival, the commander at Singapore, says city will be held to the last man. The Japanese launch a feint landing on Pulua Ubin Island to the east of Singapore.
“Double V” campaign proposed by Pittsburgh Courier, the leading black newspaper, to fight for victory at home and abroad.
US Navy Atlantic Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Unit established at Boston, MA, under Capt. Wilder Baker.
1943 Shoe rationing begins in the USA, limiting civilians to three pairs of leather shoes per year.
802nd Medical Air Evacuation Transport Squadron embarks from New York for Algeria on USS Lyon.
1944 The first operational ‘Schnorkel’ U-boat arrives in the Atlantic.
The Germans begin a full-scale counter-attack against the Anzio Beachhead.
1945 Russian attacks north of Konigsberg are blocked with the help of naval gunfire by the cruisers Scheer and Lutzow.
The Germans blow up the floodgates in the Ruhr, flooding the area West of Cologne and preventing the use of assault floating bridges by Allies.
Paraguay declared war on Germany and Japan.
The 2nd Ukrainian Front captured the southern rail station at Buda, Hungary.
Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: January 5 WWII Today: November 10 WWII Today: November 2
The Finnish 9th Division finally manages to encircle the Russian 54th Division in Kuhmo.
Finnish pilot Lt. Sarvanto, flying a Fokker, shoots down six out of seven Russian SB-2 bombers in just 5 minutes. The Russian 44th Division’s commander General Vinogradov, authorizes the remainder of his troops to try escape back to Russian lines.
1941 House of Commons vote for war credits of Â£1,600,000,000.
Hitler makes one last appeal to the Spanish leader, General Franco, to enter the war.
The Bishops of Norway start the Church’s struggle against the occupying German forces.
Australian forces capture Benghazi along with six senior Italian Generals. Italian forces make repeated attempts to break through the weak British blocking forces at Beda Fomm, but cannot.
Adolf Hitler sends Field Marshal Erwin Rommel to North Africa to help the Italian forces.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt asks Congress to support the Lend-lease Bill to help supply the Allies.
In his annual message to Congress, President Roosevelt announces the “Five Freedoms”.
Churchill demands that troops be released from Wavell’s offensive and sent to Greece.
The Luftwaffe launches its first attacks against British convoys bound for Malta in the Mediterranean.
1942 Roosevelt announces that US forces are to be based in UK.
In Moscow, the Russian Foreign Minister denounces German atrocities in occupied Russia, where in Kiev alone 52,000 people have been massacred. ‘The Soviet Union will never forget or forgive’.
Rommel’s battered forces reach the Tripolitanian frontier having evaded all British attempts to cut them off.
The British are pushed back to Gazala. The British Commonwealth forces lose 40 tanks, 40 field guns and 1,400 troops. This was a disaster for the Allies in more ways than one. Now the Allied convoys to Malta must pass between Axis occupied Crete and Axis airfields in Benghazi.
1943 Russians cut off Army Group A by reaching Yeysk on the Sea of Rostov.
The Americans outflank the retreating Japanese on Guadalcanal.
1944 The allies announce that jet-propelled aircraft will soon to be in production.
The Air Ministry says that Bomber Command dropped 157,000 tons of bombs on Germany in 1943, while the Luftwaffe dropped only 2,400 tons on Britain.
The Red Army crosses the 1939 Polish frontier after a 170-mile advance in just two weeks.
The Japanese pressure in Arakan forces the British to retreat.
Kwajalein Island in the Central Pacific falls to U.S. Army troops.
1945 The 1st Belorussian Front makes further advances to reach the Oder between KÃ¼strin and Frankfurt.
General MacArthur announced the imminent recapture of Manila while his staff planned a victory parade. But the battle for Manila had barely begun.
The ban on dancing is lifted in Finland, where it had been illegal to dance during wartime.
Boeing B-29 bombers in the Pacific strike new blows on Tokyo and Nanking.Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: August 1 WWII Today: December 14 WWII Today: September 9
1940 British and French governments agree to land an expeditionary force in northern Norway without regard for Norway’s neutrality in order to aide Finland, although it was never carried out.
First sinking of a U-boat by a lone British destroyer: in convoy OA-84 off Land’s End, HMS Antelope sinks U-41.
1941 An advanced column of armoured cars from the 7th Armoured Division intercept the Italian retreat about 70 miles south of Benghazi.
Battle of Beda Fomm begins: British and Australian troops encircle bulk of Italian army in Libya.
US Navy designates new class of ship—the auxiliary aircraft vessel (AVG), later known as escort carriers—able to be constructed quickly on merchant ship hulls.
1942 First US C-47 cargo plane lost in combat, strafed by Zeros on Bathurst Island, Australia.
Japanese begin bombarding Singapore from Malaya.
US National Naval Medical Center is established in Bethesda, MD.
US Far East Air Force renamed Fifth Air Force; Caribbean AF renamed Sixth AF; Hawaiian AF renamed Seventh AF; Alaskan AF renamed Eleventh AF.
1943 Mussolini sacks his son-in-law, Count Ciano from Foreign Ministry and takes control himself.
1944 U.S. troops reach the outskirts of Cassino, but are repulsed.
The ‘Chindits’ begin moving towards Indaw, 100 miles behind the Japanese lines in Burma.
1945 Red Army troops approach Elbing and Marienburg in East Prussia.
RAF balloon command to be disbanded as the air raid threat lessens. 278 V1’s have been claimed by balloons.
US Seventh and French Armies link, splitting the Colmar pocket in France.
MacArthur orders a containment in the northern Philippines, as the main effort is directed to the capture of Manila. The Australians land on the Japanese stronghold of New Britain, East of New Guinea.Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: February 17 WWII Today: April 8 WWII Today: April 12
The ever-lovely, poised and vivacious blonde Anne Jeffreys was born Anne Carmichael on January 26, 1923 in 1923 in Goldsboro, North Carolina. Firmly managed by her mother, she trained in voice at a fairly early age and received her first break in the entertainment field after signing with the John Robert Powers agency in New York as a junior model. In the interim, she prepared herself for an operatic career and made her debut in a production of “La Boheme” in 1940. The following year, however, Anne won a role in the musical review “Fun for the Money” that was to be staged in Hollywood. This, in turn, led to her first movie role in the tuneful Rodgers & Hart adaptation of “I Married an Angel” (1942) starring her singing idols Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald in their last cinematic pairing.
Put under contract respectively by Republic then RKO studios, Anne was utilized as a plucky heroine in a flux of 40s “B” westerns and crimers opposite such stalwarts as Robert Mitchum and Randolph Scott. Also among her roles was the part of Tess Trueheart in the “Dick Tracy” series with Morgan Conway as the steel-jawed hero, and a co-star role opposite Frank Sinatra in the war-era musical “Step Lively” (1944). None of these, however, were able to propel her into the “A” ranks and her film career quickly dissipated by the end of the 40s. In the meantime, Anne continued to prod her vocal skills with symphonic and stage appearances including “Tosca” at the Brooklyn Opera House, Kurt Weill’s “Street Scene” and the Broadway musical “My Romance”.
Divorced in 1949, Anne met handsome actor Robert Sterling during an extended run (887 performances) of “Kiss Me Kate” on Broadway. She and Sterling married in 1951 and had three sons. In an attempt to revive their flagging careers, the singing couple toured nighteries and hotels in the early 1950s with a highly successful club act. This led to them being cast as sly, engagingly cavalier spirits in the classic “Topper” (1953) sitcom. Anne played Marion Kirby (“the ghostess with the mostest”) alongside Sterling’s dapper husband George. Successfully, undertaking the ectoplasmic roles originated on film by Constance Bennett and Cary Grant, the two were an absolute hit as the party-hearty ghosts who reclaim their home to the dismay of current owner Leo G. Carroll.
Anne and Robert weren’t able to recreate that same kind of magic when they subsequently co-starred in the short-lived series “Love That Jill” (1958). In the 1960s Anne semi-retired to raise her family, but occasionally took on musical leads (“Camelot”, “The King and I”) both on Broadway and in regional productions. She later returned full time to TV and became known for her chic, gregarious, sometimes double-dealing matrons on soap operas (“Bright Promise” (1969) and “General Hospital” (1972)). She was nominated for a Golden Globe award for her supporting work in “The Delphi Bureau” (1972) adventure series, and appeared occasionally as the mother of David Hasselhoff on “Baywatch” (1989).
Unlike her husband, who retired decades ago (he died in 2006), Anne remains a tireless performer past age 80. Still quite a beauty, she has been recognized over the years for her civic and humanitarian efforts.Take a look at these other WWII Pin Ups: Sheila Ryan Colleen Townsend Janis Carter
1941 The Battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau sail from the Baltic to the Atlantic, causing absolute havoc to shipping routes and timetables.
RAF reconnaissance planes report that the Italians are beginning to evacuate Benghazi in a withdrawal towards El Agheila. The 7th Armoured Division is given immediate instructions to advance from Mechili across the desert in order to cut off the Italians escape route.
1942 The Afrika Korps recaptures Derna.
In North Africa, British retreat from German drive ends at Gazala, Libya.
Hahas Pasha forms a new Egyptian Cabinet, becomes the Military Governor and dissolves Parliament the next day.
Japanese take Ambon, Netherlands East Indies from small Australian garrison.
British seize Egyptian palace in Cairo to force the abdication of pro-Axis King Farouk.
The British refuse to surrender at Singapore, heavy bombardment by the Japanese continues for 4 days.
1943 Red Army troops achieve a landing near the Black Sea port of Novorossiysk.
General Bernard Montgomery’s British Eighth Army crosses from Libya into Tunisia.
European Theater of Operations (ETO) branches into North African Theater of Operations (NATO) in North Africa and Mediterranean under General Dwight Eisenhower and ETO (UK, Iceland, continental Europe except Spain and Italy) under General Frank Andrews.
1944 The Germans start their offensive to relieve the Korsun pocket.
Chinese advances in Hukawng Valley, continue while the Japanese offensive on Arakan front gains strength in order to push the British back into India.
US forces take Kwajalein Island in Marshall’s, losing 486 killed and 1,495 wounded, but inflicting 8,386 casualties on the Japanese.
1945 Yalta Conference begins: A summit conference between Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt opens at Yalta in Crimea, to discuss plans for the treatment of postwar Germany, its division into zones of occupation, reparations and the future Polish western border.
The U.S. First Army takes the first of seven Ruhr dams. Belgium is now reported as completely free of German troops.
First Allied truck convoy over the reopened Burma Road arrives in Kunming, China.Take a look at these other WWII Posts: WWII Today: February 19 Mamoru Shigemitsu Quote “Hell is on us. WWII Today: November 7