The British destroyer HMS Wakeful is hit and sunk by a torpedo from the German E-boat S30. HMS Grafton which was nearby try’s to rescue the sailors from HMS Wakeful, but is itself hit by another torpedo from the same German E-boat and begins to sink. Another British destroyer, HMS Comfort moves up to help, but HMS Grafton fires on her in the mistaken belief that she is a German ship, sinking HMS Comfort. 15 other vessels are also sunk by Luftwaffe Stuka attacks near Dunkirk on this day.
German 6th Army takes Lille, Ostend and Ypres in western Flander’s. Luftwaffe activity increases as orders the Panzers to be switched south ready for main battle of France. 47,300 British and French troops are evacuated from Dunkirk today.
During the evacuation of British troops from Crete, a Luftwaffe attack on the cruiser Orion inflicts 200 casualties and sinks British destroyers Imperial and Hereward.
‘Fridericus I’ is completed as the Russian pocket to the Southeast of Kharkov is finally wiped out and 214,000 Russians captured, along with 1,200 tanks and 2,000 guns destroyed. German casualties in the fighting around Kharkov amount to some 20,000.
Rommel is only 25 miles from Tobruk as a massive tank battle rages in the ‘Cauldron’.
The Chinese are defeated by Japanese forces at Kinhwa in Chekiang province south of Shanghai.
The RAF launches a major raid (719 bombers) against Wuppertal, dropping 1,900 tons of bombs and killing 2,450 civilians and claim that half of Wuppertal has been ‘wiped off the map’.
The U.S. escort carrier Block Island is sunk by U-549 off the Canary Islands.
Using its maximum range, the US 8th Air Force attacks aircraft production plants at Marienburg and Posen in eastern Germany.
The British reach ‘the factory’, 10 miles North of Anzio.
The first U.S. armored battle of the pacific war occurs on Biak, with six tanks being involved. The Japanese manage to force the partial re-embarkation of U.S. forces.
SHAEF in Paris says that there are an estimated 4.25 million displaced persons in the Anglo-American zone, of which only 1.39 million have so far been repatriated, most of these to Western Europe.