Home PageWWII HistoryWorld War II Today: August 21

1940
Commons allows nationalist forces of Poland, Norway, Belgium, Holland, France and Czechoslovakia to train in Britain under their own flags.

Leon Trotsky is assassinated by a Stalinist agent while in exile in Mexico City.

1941
French resistance member Pierre “Fabien” Georges commits the first violent act of resistance against the Germans in Paris when he assassinates a German naval cadet in the Barches-Rochechouart Metro station. More than 150 Parisians would be shot by the Germans in reprisal.

First Arctic convoy leaves Iceland for Russia.

Marshal Voroshilov tells the people of Leningrad to defend their city to the last. Hitler orders the investment, not capture, of Leningrad, and the transfer of several divisions from the North and Centre to capture the Crimea and the Donets basin, an industrial region vital to the Soviet war effort.

1942
Roosevelt says the perpetrators of barbarism in occupied countries ‘will have to stand in courts of law, in the very countries which they are now oppressing and answer for their acts’.

U.S. Marines turn back the first major Japanese ground attack on Guadalcanal in the Battle of Tenaru.

1943
The Labour Party wins the Australian elections.

1944
Representatives from the U.K., U.S. and USSR meet at Dumbarton Oaks in the U.S.A, to discuss post-war international security.

The French First Army surrounds Toulon. The U.S. Third Army reaches Troyes and Reims.

The German Sixth Army is separated from the Romanian 3rd Army on Black Sea coast. Colonel General Friessner orders all German units to withdraw as the Romanians fail to fight and change sides. The Germans, with naval support, open a coastal corridor 10 to 12 miles wide to Army Group North, but Hitler refuses to order the evacuation of Baltic States.

1945
President Harry S. Truman ended the Lend-Lease program that had shipped some $50 billion in aid to America’s allies during World War II.

As the Red Army now hold much of Manchuria, the Japanese Kwantung Army surrenders formally to Major General Shelakor at Harbin.

The Japanese announce that the first U.S. landings will be on the 26th August. A non-fraternization rule with the Japanese is to be enforced by the U.S.

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