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Dec 12

World War II Today: December 12

1937
The Japanese fire on British and U.S. ships on the Yangtze River in China, sinking the American ship Panay. The Japanese apologize to the United States and pay reparations; the British refuse to accept any Japanese apology.

1939
Finnish have some success against Russian troops at Tolvajrvi, inflicting heavy casualties.

Two German cruisers which are accompanied by 5 destroyers are damaged by torpedoes from the British submarine HMS Salmon as they are return from a mine laying operation of the northeast coast of England. Later in the day, HMS Salmon also gives warning under the ‘rules of war’ to a German liner, although it reaches the port of Bremen safely.

1940
Sheffield is heavily bombed by the Luftwaffe.

World War II Today: December 12 - Sheffied Bombed

Philip Kerr, Lord Lothian, British ambassador to the US, dies in Washington DC

1941
The ship “Struma” leaves Romania for Palestine carrying 769 Jews but is later denied permission by British authorities to allow the passengers to disembark. In Feb. 1942, it sails back into the Black Sea where it is intercepted by a Soviet submarine and sunk as an “enemy target.”

Britain declares war on Bulgaria.

Bulgaria declares war on both Britain and the USA.

Hungary declares war on the USA.

Romania declares war on the USA.

US declares war on Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria after receiving those country’s declarations of war against the US.

1942

Manstein launches his counter attack with a hastily assembled force of 13 divisions, including three Panzer divisions with about 230 tanks to try and relieve Sixth Army at Stalingrad.

The 1,500 ton destroyer HMS Partridge is sunk off the coast of Algeria by U-565, commanded by Wilhelm Franken.

1943

Rommel becomes C in C of Army Group B, which covers the coastal defenses from Holland to Bay of Biscay.

A Czech-Soviet treaty of friendship is signed in Moscow.

1944

The underground V-weapon factory at Wittring is captured by the U.S. Third Army.

British launch Third Arakan Campaign toward Akyab, Burma

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