World War II Timeline

As I have read various books on the World War II period, I have wondered how various events relate to one another chronologically. I decided to start this timeline to help visualize those events. I consider this for now at least a work in progress as I will be adding entries from time to time.

If you are interested in this page, you may also find these other pages of interest:

The  World War II Sources” page is a collection of more than 360 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds and other sources with information on the World War II era in history.

The “About WWII” page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII.

Last updated March 28, 2020

 Pacific Theater  Date  European Theater
1918
January 18 War-weary and starving German civilians take to the streets to demand “peace and bread.” The country is just days away from surrender. [4]
1919
January 18 The Paris Peace Conference begins to negotiate treaties after World War I
February The Polish-Soviet War begins with border clashes
July The then-unknown Corporal Adolf Hitler is given the mission of infiltrating the Nazi party for German Army Intelligence
1920
January 21 The Paris Peace Conference ends
1921
March 21 The Peace of Riga was signed ending the Polish-Soviet War
July 29 Hitler became the leader of the Nazi party
November 4 The Nazi Party’s paramilitary Sturmabteilung or ‘SA’ is founded. They became known as the “brown-shirts” [4]
1922
The Washington Naval Treaty is signed by the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan, France, and Italy. February 6 They agree to limit the size of their naval forces.
October The Russian Civil War ends with the communists in power
October 29 Benito Mussolini is appointed the Prime Minister of Italy by the king
November 5 Treaty of Rapallo was formally signed in Berlin. Germany and Russia would renounce all territorial and monetary claims against each other as the result of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk at the end of WW1, and the two nations were to engage in friendly relations. Russia was to provide heavy weapons and facilities for German military training, which was prohibited by the Treaty of Versailles; meanwhile, Germany was to conduct training for the Russian military and to provide Russia with an annual payment.
1923
January 11 France and Belgium occupy the Ruhr in an effort to compel Germany to step up its payments of World War I reparations
November 8 The Beer Hall Putsch takes place, in which Adolf Hitler unsuccessfully leads the Nazis in an attempt to overthrow the German government.
1929
October 29 Stock prices collapsed on the New York Stock Exchange amid panic selling that precipitated the Great Depression
1931
January 26 Production of T-26 light tanks begins in Bolshevik Factory in Leningrad [2]
Japan invades Manchuria September 18
Japanese troops reach the Taling River in northeastern China [2] December 31
1932
Japanese troops capture Jinzhou, Liaoning Province, China [2] January 3
Chinese and Japanese troops clash in Shanghai [2] January 28
In the first major aircraft carrier action in the Far East, Japanese carrier aircraft bomb Shanghai, China causing 1,000 mostly civilian deaths [2] January 29
Japanese troops capture Harbin, China February 4
The Japanese carrier Hosho launchs sorties against Chinese positions in Shanghai February 5
Ma Zhanshan surrenders to the Japanese in Heilongjiang, China [2] February 14
The Chinese naval commander in Harbin surrenders 5 river gunboats to Japan [2] February 15
February 16 First flight of the Martin B-10, first all-metal monoplane bomber. It was the first all-metal monoplane bomber to go into regular use by the United States Army Air Corps and the first mass-produced bomber
League of Nations reviews the Japanese violation of Chinese sovereignty [2] February 19
Chinese troops launch a failed counterattack in Shanghai March 1
The League of Nations demand a ceasefire between Japanese and Chinese forces in China [2] March 4
The Chinese back down at Shanghai per League of Nations request; Japanese attacks continue [2] March 6
March 7 First flight of the German Junkers Ju 52/3m, 3 engine transport aircraft
July 8 First flight of the Supermarine Scapa (Nanuk/Solent/Southampton X), British general reconnaissance biplane twin engine flying boat. Developed from the Southampton, it formed the basis of the later Stranraer flying boat. [8]
Japanese troops capture the Shanhai Gate of the Great Wall of China September 18
China appeals to the League of Nations over Japanese invasion [2] September 21
Japanese troops attack Qiqihar, Nenjiang Province, China [2] November 17
1933
January 30 Hitler becomes Chancellor of Germany [2, 26]
Japanese and Manchukuo troops attack Rehe Province in China February 21
Japanese troops capture Chaoyang, Rehe Province, China February 25
February 27 Germany’s Reichstag burns. Hitler blames communist terrorists for the blaze and declares a state of emergency. In the coming days, the Nazis will crack down on all political opposition and silence the press [2]
1934
The Chinese 620th and 621st Regiments ambush Japanese troops near the Great Wall [2] March 6
Japanese and Chinese troops clash at Gubeikou Pass of the Great Wall [2] March 10
The Chinese 25th Division was ordered to fall back from Gubeikou Pass of the Great Wall [2] March 12
Soviet troops capture Korla, Xinjiang, China [2] March 16
Japanese troops capture Yiyuankou Pass of the Great Wall [2] March 21
August 19 The German public voted 90 percent in favor of Chancellor Adolf Hitler becoming Führer und Reichskanzler (“leader and chancellor”), a new title created after the death of President Paul von Hindenburg earlier in the month
October 7 First flight of the Tupolev ANT-40.1, a Soviet high speed twin-engine three-seat monoplane bomber [8]
Japan renounces the Naval Treaties of 1922 and 1930 [2] December 29
1935
February 24 First flight of the twin engine German Heinkel He 111
April 12 First flight of the Bristol Blenheim (type 142), a British light bomber
May 6 First flight of the Curtiss P-36 Hawk, also known as the Curtiss Hawk Model 75, American fighter aircraft. The P-36 was flown by the US Army Air Corp and allies in both theaters
October 3 Italy invades Ethiopia
Chiang Kaishek is made the Premier of Republic of China [2] December 9
1936
March 5 First flight of the Supermarine Spitfire. The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft used by the Royal Air Force and other Allied countries before, during, and after World War II
May 6 First flight of the Latécoère 298, French seaplane, single-engine, mid-wing cantilever monoplane, designed as a torpedo bomber, but also served as a dive bomber against land and naval targets, and as a maritime reconnaissance aircraft
The United States Navy orders 83 Curtiss SBC-3 Helldivers [9] August 19
October 3 First flight of the Italian Fiat BR.20 Cicogna (Stork) low-wing twin-engine medium bomber
Japanese-backed Mongolian troops march into Suiyuan, China [2] October 20
November 25 Signing of the Anti-Comintern Pact in Berlin [2]
Mengjiang-sponsored irregulars attack Bailingmiao, China [2] December 3
December 13 First flight of the PZL.37 Łoś. Polish twin-engine medium bomber. Extensively used in the defence of Poland during the rapid invasion of Poland by Germany in September 1939. [2]
1937
February 26 First flight of the Fiat G.50 Freccia (“Arrow”), MM334, WWII Italian fighter aircraft. Italy’s first single-seat, all-metal monoplane with an enclosed cockpit and retractable landing gear to go into production
First flight of the Japanese Mitsubishi Ki-30 “Ann” light bomber February 27
March 1 The first British Bristol Blenheims enter service with the RAF 114 Squadron in Wyton
April 11 First flight of the Junkers Ju 89 German four engine heavy bomber prototype
The Marco Polo Bridge Incident renewed hostilities between Japan and China July 7-9
Japanese troops capturd Luodian near Shanghai after fierce 4-day battle [2] September 15
Carrier aircraft from Ryujo attack Guangzhou, Guangdong, China [2] September 21
Japanese aircraft bombard the Chinese coastal batteries overlooking Pearl River Delta [2] September 30
The Japanese Chahar Expeditionary Force attacks Gouxian, Shanxi, China [2] October 2
Japanese troops capture Gouxian, Shanxi, China [2] October 12
The Japanese 10th Army lands at Jinshanwei in the south of Shanghai [2] November 5
Chinese troops begin to retreat from Shanghai, China [2] November 8
The Wufu defensive line between Shanghai and Nanjing is overrun by Japanese troops [2] November 19
German businessman Rabe in Nanjing voices concerns of Japanese atrocities to Hitler [2] November 25
Xicheng defensive line between Shanghai and Nanjing is overrun by Japanese troops [2] November 26
General Tang Shengzhi advised foreign residents in Nanjing to depart [2] November 27
Japanese troops reach outskirts of Nanjing and demand surrender of the city December 2 Delegates from Russia and Germany meet at Brest-Litovsk to sign an armistice and open negotiations for a formal peace treaty. Berlin is hoping to end its two-front war so it can concentrate its forces for a decisive victory in the West. [4]
Japanese 9th and 16th Divs attacked Chinese 66th and 83rd Corps east of Nanjing [2] December 3
Japanese troops reach the outskirts of Nanjing and demanded surrender [2] December 9
Japanese troops began the assault on Nanjing, China [2] December 10 First flight of the Lockheed Hudson B-14L (Mk.1) N7205. American-built light twin engine bomber & coastal reconnaissance aircraft built initially for the RAF. [8]
Japanese atrocities at Nanjing begin with the execution of 1500 Chinese POWs [2] December 12
Japanese massacre more than 3,000 people in or near Guanjiangan and Jiangli areas of Nanjing [2] December 13
Japanese 6th Div troops massacre 2000 Chinese outside of Hanzhong Gate of Nanjing [2] December 15
The 20th Company of Japanese 16th Div kills 7000 Chinese east of Zijin Mtn near Nanjing [2] December 16
Japanese 13th Div began to burn remains of their thousands of victims in Nanjing [2] December 19
Japanese occupation forces begin registering men in Nanjing [2] December 29
Japanese occupation forces in Nanjing, China began registering women [2] December 31
1938
Koki Hirota messaged other diplomats about Japanese brutality in Nanjing [2] January 17
George Fitch departed Nanjing with film containing scenes of Japanese atrocities [2] January 19
The cruiser Kuma supports the Japanese landing at Yantai, China [2] February 2
Japanese troops take 20 Chinese women from Ginling College for comfort houses February 4
The International Committee in Nanjing makes 450 complaints of rape and murder to Japanese embassy [2] February 5
The Japanese begin a 6-month-long aerial bombardment campaign against Chongqing [2] February 18
The Chinese Air Force attacked Matsuyama Airfield on Taiwan [2] February 23
Dr. Robert Wilson estimates that 100k Chinese have been killed in Nanjing [2] March 7
March 11 Hitler formally issued a directive for the invasion of Austria [2]
March 12 Germany annexed Austria; Hitler visits Linz on the same day [2]
The Japanese 10th Division advances into Jiangsu Province, China [2] March 14
Chinese troops form a defensive line 75 miles north of Xuzhou [2] March 15
The Japanese attack on Tengxian, Jiangsu Province, China is repulsed [2] March 16
The Chinese 31st Division arrives at Jiangsu Province in response to a Japanese attack [2] March 21
The Japanese 11th Army captures the airfield outside of Anqing, Anhui, China [2] June 12
Japanese diplomats demand that Soviet troops withdraw from Lake Khasan area [2] July 14
Soviet troops drive the Japanese out of the Lake Khasan region, northeastern China [2] August 9
The Japanese 106th Div and Japanese 101st Div launch an offensive in Jiangxi, China [2] August 20
September 15 Chamberlain and Hitler meet at Berchtesgaden to discuss the Czechoslovakia issue [2]
Japanese troops capture the city of Shang, Hubei Province, China [2] September 16
September 19 The UK and France recommend that Czechoslovakia cede Sudetenland to Germany [2]
Japanese bombing kills 600 civilians in Nanjing [2] September 25
September 29 German, Italian, French, British leaders meet at Munich to decide on Czechoslovakia [2]
September 30 UK PM Chamberlain declares ‘peace for our time’ after Sudetenland appeasement [2]
October 1 Germans begin arresting those opposing the Nazis in Sudetenland [2]
October 4 First flight of the Dornier Do 217 V-1, German WWII twin engine bomber prototype, more powerful version of the Dornier Do 17 [8]
Japanese troops resume the offensive in the Dabie Mountains region of Hubei, China [2] October 6
Chinese troops envelope elements of the Japanese 101st and 106th Divisions in Jiangxi, China [2] October 7
The Japanese 106th Div is largely wiped out by Chinese troops at Battle of Wanjialing [2] October 10
Japanese troops land at Daya Bay near Guangzhou, China [2] October 12
Chinese troops withdrew from the Wanjialing area in Jiangxi, China [2] October 13
Japanese troops capture the city of Guangzhou in Southern China [2] October 21
Japanese troops reach the southern borders of Wuhan, Hubei, China [2] October 22
Japanese troops capture Humen, Guangdong Province, China [2] October 23
Japanese troops capture Huangpo, Anhui, China [2] October 24
Japanese troops capture Sanshui, Guangdong, China [2] October 25
Japanese forces finally capture Wuchang and Hankou, China. The Battle of Wuhan had begun with air raids in February, though the ground offensive did not begin until June. October 26
October 28 Germany expells 15,000 to 17,000 Jews of Polish origin across Polish border [2]
October 31 Poland rejects German invite to join the Anti-Comintern Pact [2]
November 2 Arbitration of Vienna gives Hungary southeastern Slovakia and Ruthenia [2]
Japanese carrier Kaga launches strikes against Chinese positions near Guangzhou [2]


Chinese troops capture Bailingmiao, Suiyuan, China [2]

November 24 Adolf Hitler orders generals to plan an invasion of Danzig, but avoid Poland [2]
December 2 First flight of the Brewster F2A Buffalo, US Navy’s first monoplane fighter aircraft and one of the first US WWII monoplanes with an arrester hook and other modifications for aircraft carriers.a [8]
December 12 First flight of the Fairey Albacore, British single-engine carrier-borne biplane torpedo bomber. The Albacore was a three-seat biplane, with fixed taildragger landing gear, and three crew consisting of pilot, navigator, and radio operator/rear gunner [8]
1939
Japanese bombers attack Chongqing, China during the day [2] January 10
First flight of the Lockheed P-38 Lightning, it became operational on May 29, 1942 January 27 The P-38 was the primary long-range fighter of United States Army Air Forces until the appearance of large numbers of P-51D Mustangs
Japanese Special Naval Landing Forces land at Haikou, Hainan [2] February 10
Japanese troops land at Sanya on the southern coast of Hainan island [2] February 11
40 Chinese fighters shoot down 9 Japanese bombers near Lanzhou [2] February 20
March 11 Hitler issues a ultimatum for Czechoslovakia to hand over Bohemia and Moravia [2]
Chinese troops begin advancing toward Nanchang, China [2] March 12 Germans demand that Tiso declare Slovakian independence to weaken Czechoslovakia [2]
March 13 Germany threatens, with force, the Slovakians to declare independence [2]
March 14 Slovakia and Ruthenia declare independence from Czechoslovakia [2]
Chinese troops report Japanese usage of chemical weapons at Jiangxi Province [2] March 20
The Japanese 6th Division crosses the Xuishui River and march towards Wuning, China [2] March 21
First flight of Mitsubishi A6M1 Zero (Zeke), long range fighter aircraft operated by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service April 1
The Chinese counter offensive toward Nanchang, reaches the outskirts of the city April 25
USAAF placed an order April 26 for 524 P-40 fighters
Chinese troops attack Japanese positions at Nanchang, Jiangxi Province, China May 4
June 1 The Fw-190 fighter makes its maiden flight at Bremen, Germany [2]
June 14 The Japanese blockade the British concession in Tianjin, China [2]
June 26 The German Gestapo begins to put undesired Czechs in concentration camps [2]
The Japanese Army 2nd Air Brigade attacks the Soviet airfield at Tamsagbulag, Mongoli [2] June 27
July 7 First flight of the Latécoère 299, French 3 seat reconnaissance-torpedo bomber prototype derived from the Late 298 [8]
Soviet forces counterattack Japanese forces in the Mongolia Area of Chin [2] July 9
July 25 The maiden flight of the Avro Manchester prototype took place [9]
Japanese troops attack Ruichang, Jiangxi, China [2] August 10
August 19 Joseph Stalin announces to the Politburo his intention to befriend Germany [2]


The Allied raid on Dieppe, France ended in major failure [2]

August 23 The Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact signed
August 27 Japanese troops are defeated at the Battle of Khalkhin Gol [2]
September 1 Germany invades Poland
September 3 The UK and France declare war on Germany. The ‘Phoney War‘ begins.
September 9 The first troops of the British Expeditionary Force sails in convoy to France [1]


The Polish Army makes its sole major offensive of the war, forcing Germans to withdraw from Warsaw in the battle of Bzura [1]

September 11 Polish submarines are ordered to break through to Britain or to be interned in Sweden; many will fight for the Allies [1]


“Lord Haw Haw” (US-born British subject William Joyce) begins broadcasting anti-British propaganda to Britain on “Germany Calling” radio show on Radio Hamburg [1]

September 12 The Anglo-French Supreme War Council agrees to postpone military operations [1]
September 13 The 60,000 survivors in the Radom Pocket in Poland surrenders [2]


British civilians are allowed to carry torches (flashlights) in blackout if screened with tissue paper [1]

September 14 The Germans take Gdynia, the only remaining Polish port [1]


Off the Hebrides, the German submarine U-39 attacks carrier HMS Ark Royal but misses and is sunk by British destroyers Faulknor, Foxhound, and Firedrake, making it the first U-boat sunk in WWII [1]

The USSR and Japan sign a ceasefire in Moscow, officially ending Battle of Khalkhin Gol [2] September 15
September 16 Polish troops destroy 22 tanks of Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler regiment [2]


In Poland, the Germans take Brest-Litovsk and surround Warsaw [1]


The first German U-boat attack on an Allied North Atlantic convoy; U-31 sinks British freighter Aviemore in convoy OB-4 off Land’s End [1]

September 17 The Soviet Union invades war-torn Poland. Soviet troops (allied with Germany) surround Polish troops. Moscow’s plan is all part of a secret deal worked out between Hitler and Stalin in the infamous Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact. 150 Polish military and civilian planes fly to Romania; the pilots will make their way to Britain to fight again. [1,4]
September 18 German and Soviet troops link at Brest-Litovsk, Poland [1]


Polish cryptographers flee to Paris with vital information on the German Enigma codes [1]

The Japanese use poison gas against Chinese troops along Sinchiang River in drive to Changsha, China [1,2] September 19
September 20 Germany announces that Jews must surrender their radios [1]


The first aerial engagement of the war between the RAF and the Luftwaffe takes place over France [1]

September 21 German SS Gen. Reinhard Heydrich produces a plan to remove Polish Jews, intelligentsia, clergy, and nobility to ghettos [1]


The Romanian Prime Minister Armand Călinescu is assassinated by the Fascist Iron Guard for supporting Poland [1]


The Polish Southern Army surrenders at Tomaszov and Zamosz, Poland [2]

September 22 Britain begins rationing of petrol (20 gallons/month for automobiles) [1]


London officials report car accidents have tripled since the blackout started [1]

September 23 The Polish cavalry retakes Krasnobrod, one of the last battles in military history between opposing cavalry [1]
September 24 The German Einsatzgruppen murders 800 members of Polish intelligentsia at Bydgoszcz, Poland [2]
September 25 Soviet troops capture Bialystok, Poland [2]


Germany issues new ration cards: 1 lb. meat, 5 lb. bread, ¾ lb. fats, ¾ lb. sugar, and 1 lb. coffee or ersatz coffee per week [1]


German Luftwaffe drops incendiary bombs on Warsaw, Poland [1]

September 27 In Warsaw, Poland surrenders to Germany [1]


The Polish government-in-exile is established in Paris [1]


The German Gestapo and Soviet NKVD meet to coordinate efforts in Poland [2]


The German Reich Security Main Office (Reichssicherheitshauptamt—RSHA) is established under Reinhard Heydrich, consolidating Gestapo state police, Kripo criminal police, and SD Nazi party polic [1]

September 28 Merkulov reports to Stalin that his NKVD group has arrested 923 in Poland thus far [2]
<hr.
The last Polish stronghold, the fortress of Modlin, falls after an 18-day siege [1]


The Soviets and Germans divide control of Poland along the River Bug [1]

September 29 Poland officially surrenders to Germany and the USSR as the “Soviet-German Boundary & Friendship Treaty” is signed [1]


Estonia signs mutual assistance pact with Soviet Union [11]

September 30 French troops withdraw from German Saar region [1]


Gen. Władysław Sikorski becomes prime minister of the Polish government-in-exile in Paris [1]

The Japanese 6th Division begins to fall back from Changsha, Hunan Province, China [2] October 1
Chinese aircraft bomb the Japanese airfield at Wuhan, Hubei Province, China [2] October 3 The Germans order ruthless exploitation of occupied Poland [1]
Chinese troops capture Miluo and Xinshi near Changsha, Hunan Province, China [2] October 4
The Chinese 23rd Division attacks the Japanese Navy anchorage (now Miluo) [2]


The US Navy Hawaiian Detachment opens at Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii [1]

October 5 The USSR forces Latvia to allow Soviet troop bases [1]
October 6 Last of the Polish military surrenders to Germany
October 7 Daladier rejects a proposal from Hitler for a multi-power conference for peace [2]
The Chinese 195th Division pursues retreating Japanese troops in Hunan, China [2] October 8 The Nazis establish their first Jewish ghetto—in Piotrkow, Poland [1]
October 9 The German battleship Deutschland captures neutral US freighter City of Flint, creating an international incident [1]
Chinese troops recapture all territory in Hubei, Hunan, and Jiangxi Provinces [1] October 10 The Annual German Winter Relief drive begins, with forced charitable contributions from German civilians [1]
Chinese troops recapture all territory in Hubei, Hunan, and Jiangxi Provinces [1] October 12 British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain rejects Hitler’s “peace offer.” [1]
October 13 In skirmishes along the Maginot Line, the French destroy three bridges over the Rhine [1]
October 14 In a daring raid to Britain’s naval base at Scapa Flow, German U-boat U-47 sinks the British battleship HMS Royal Oak killing 833 [1]
October 18 President Roosevelt declares US waters off-limits to submarines of warring nations [1]
October 22 Soviets clamp down on occupied Poland, closing schools and churches, banning the Polish language and typewriters, and replacing Polish currency with Soviet rubles [1]


Gallup poll: 62% of Americans want to aid the Allies, but 95% want to stay out of the war [1]

First flight of the land-based Japanese Mitsubishi G4M (long designation: Mitsubishi Navy Type 1 attack bomber), known as a “Betty” to the Allies. It saw service from June of 1941 until the end of the war. October 23
October 26 Germany annexes former Polish areas of Upper Silesia, West Prussia, Pomerania, Poznan, Ciechanow, Danzig, part of Lódz; the rest of German-occupied Poland comes under the “General Government.” [1]
October 30 Switzerland begins rationing sugar, pasta, rice, wheat, butter, and oil [1]
November 1 Heinkel demonstrates the first jet aircraft He 178 to the German Air Ministry [2]
November 4 The US Neutrality Act of 1939 becomes law, repealing the arms embargo in Neutrality Acts of 1935 & 1937 and renewing the expired “cash & carry” clause to allow the sale of arms to Britain & France. [1]
November 5 The plot by senior German officers under Gen. Franz Halder to arrest or kill Hitler collapses; the officers are appalled at Hitler’s decision to invade Belgium, the Netherlands, and France [1]
November 8 Finland refuses a Russian demand for territorial exchange [2]
November 9 Adolf Hitler survives assassination attempt at the anniversary of the Beer Hall Putsch in Munich; bomb planted by communist Georg Elser [1]
November 12 Germany begins stricting point-based clothing rationing, with no clothing ration cards issued to Jews [1]
November 16 In Prague, Czechoslovakia, Germans counteract anti-Nazi student protests with arrests and gunfire, and they declare martial law [1]
November 17 After uprising in Prague, Germans close Czechoslovakian universities, execute 9 students, and send 1200 to concentration camps [1]
November 19 The German He 177 heavy bomber took its first flight [2]
November 23 All Jews above age of 10 in the General Govt were ordered to wear Star of David [2]


Britain begins rationing bacon and butter [1]


The US celebrates Thanksgiving after President Roosevelt moved the holiday to extend the Christmas shopping season—although 22 states retain the original date. [1]

November 24 The Gestapo executes 120 Czech students accused of participating in anti-Nazi conspiracy [2]
November 25 The 1940 Winter Olympic Games, originally scheduled to be held in Sapporo, Japan, then St. Moritz, Switzerland, and then Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, are cancelled due to the war [1]
November 26 The Soviets stage a false attack on Mainila, Russia
and use it as an excuse to invade Finland [1,2]
The Japanese capture Nanning, China, an important railhead [1] November 27 Finland makes efforts to de-escalate, asking the USSR to do the same [2]


The USSR denounces 1932 non-aggression pact with Finland [1]


Nobel Committee announces cancellation of 1939 Peace Prize. [1]

November 30 The Winter War begins when Russia invades Finland. The League of Nations expells Russia for the attack.
The Chinese 81st Division attacks Kaifeng, Henan Province, China [2] December 1 After previous day’s Soviet invasion of Finland, Risto Ryti replaces Aimo Cajander as Prime Minister of Finland [1]


The first Canadian troop convoy (TC-1) sails from Halifax, Nova Scotia to Britain with 7400 men [1]

December 2 Finnish troops destroyed the Suvilathi power station to prevent Soviet capture [2]
December 3 As Soviets advance in Finland, Finnish troops drop back to the Mannerheim Line [1,2]
December 5 Heavy fighting takes place between Soviet Army and Finnish Army in Karelia [2]


Fritz Kuhn, leader of the pro-Nazi German-American Bund, is convicted of embezzlement of Bund funds and is sent to Sing Sing; Gerhard Kunze replaces him over the Bund [1]

December 7 The Soviet 9th Army attacks in central Karelia, Finland [2]


In Soviet-Finnish war, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Italy declare neutrality [1]

December 8 In a Gallup poll, 96.5% of Americans oppose the US entering World War II [1]
Chinese troops launch an attack on Henglingguan Pass in northern China [2] December 10 France bans sale of meat on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays [1]
December 11 Finnish ski troops attack Soviet supply line on Raate Road [1]


Finland protests the Soviet invasion at the League of Nations [2]

December 14 The League of Nations condemns Russia for the attack on Finland and expels her from the League [1,11]
December 15 The Red Army assaults Taipale, Finland [2]
December 16 Finnish ski troops fight Soviets with first use of homemade “Molotov Cocktails.” [1]
December 19 Finnish troops destroyed 20 Soviet tanks at Summa, Finland [2]
December 22 First flight of the Petlyakov VI-100 (Pe-2). Soviet twin engine dive bomber prototype aircraft, later developed as the Pe-2. Regarded as one of the best ground attack aircraft of the war, successful in heavy fighter, reconnaissance and night fighter roles. [8]


First flight of the Caproni Ca.313. (Prototype MM.402). Italian twin-engine reconnaissance bomber, development of the Ca.310. [8]

December 27 Finns wipe out all Soviet bridgeheads on the Suvanto River [2]


The US State Department protests British removal and censorship of US mail from neutral ships [2]

December 28 First flight of the XB-24 Liberator, at Lindbergh Field, San Diego, CA, the prototype for what will be America’s most-produced four-engine bomber of the war [1]
December 30 Soviet 163rd Division was wiped out by Finns at Suomussalmi, Finland [2]
December 31 Finnish 9th Division secures the village of Suomussalmi [2]
1940
January 1 Britain expands conscription to men aged 20-27, adding two million potential draftees [1]
January 2 Finns attack Soviet troops along the Raate Road in Finland [2]
January 3 The Finnish 9th Div continued attacks the Soviets along Raate Road [2]
January 6 The Soviet 44th Div begins to retreat from Raate Road region in Finland [2]


Britain declares German ships may not use Norwegian waters; Sweden and Norway deny a British request to operate in their waters [1]


Norway and Sweden forbid Allied troops from crossing their territory to aid Finland [1]

January 7 In Britain, “BBC Forces Programme” premieres, a second nationwide service (radio channel) with dance music and variety shows meant to appeal to servicemen [1]


In the US, “Gene Autry’s Melody Ranch” premieres on CBS radio and runs through 1956 [1]


Battle of Raate Road ends in Finnish victory; over 10,000 have been killed in the Soviet 44th Division [1]

January 8 Food rationing is introduced. During the war food was rationed to ensure that everyone received the same amount regardless of income or class. Bacon, butter and sugar were the first to be rationed from 8 January 1940 [1,21]


Finnish 9th Div takes control of Raate Road. [2]

Australian Comforts Fund is reestablished, for women to send care packages to soldiers [1] January 9
January 10 Unofficial peace talks begin between the Soviet Union and Finland [2]
January 11 The Finnish IV Corps pins the Soviet 168th Division north of Lake Lagoda in Finland [2]


The British Women’s Section Air Transport Auxiliary ferries their first plane; during WWII, 166 women fly for ATA, 1/8 of all ATA pilots; 15 will die in service [1]

January 13 The Russian YA-26 prototype fighter, future Yak-1, took its first flight
January 14 The Enigma code is broken at Bletchley Park in Britain [2]


British chemists (pharmacists) are granted an exemption to sugar rationing in order to coat pills [1]


The FBI raids in New York City uncovering guns, bomb-making material, and a plot to sabotage & overthrow the government; 17 members of anti-Semitic “Christian Front” are arrested (later acquitted) [1]

January 15 Belgium denies British and French troops the right to cross its territory [1]


Britain announces twice as many people have been killed on blacked-out roads than in enemy action [1]

January 17 Polish cryptologist Marian Rejewski brakes the Enigma code in the presence of Alan Turing during their meeting in Paris [1,23]
January 18 The Finnish 9th Division is ordered to attack the Soviet 54th Division [2]
Chinese troops capture Licheng, Shanxi Province, China [2] January 20 Britain and France agree to send troops and supplies to aid Finland, but they will not arrive in time [1]
The British light cruiser HMS Liverpool stops Japanese liner Asamu Maru off Japan and captures 21 Germans—12 naval reservists are detained, 9 civilians are released [1] January 21 The Soviet 8th Army launches an unsuccessful attack on Finnish Group Talvela [2]


Off Scotland, the German U-boat U-22 sinks destroyer HMS Exmouth (all 189 killed) [1]

January 22 British Ministry of Information begins censoring newsreels [1]
January 23 Britain and France say they will not honor 200-mile Pan-American neutrality zone and will attack German ships in that zone [1]


Animals in the Berlin Zoo are placed on war rations—less meat, no bananas or peanuts [1]

In their war with Japan, the Chinese take Dongyangyuan Pass, Shanxi Province, China [1] January 24 The Finnish Army Force Talvela and the Soviet 8th Army exchange attacks at Kolla, Finland [2]
January 25 The US Coast Guard establishes the Atlantic Weather Observation Service in cooperation with US Weather Service; cutters patrol and transmit weather observations [1]
January 27 The US freighter City of Flint returns to US; Capt. Joseph Gainard (merchant marine) receives 1st Navy Cross of WWII. The Germans had captured the neutral freighter, creating an international incident. [1]
Chinese troops capture Lucheng, Shanxi Province, China [2] January 28
January 29 Soviets began negotiating with Finland [2]


The German Luftwaffe attacks British shipping in the English Channel, sinking four ships. [1]

January 30 The first British aircraft victory against a German submarine in WW2 is scored [2]
January 31 Soviet strength in the Summa sector of Finland grows to 12 divisions [2]
The Japanese 26th Division captures Wuyuan, Suiyuan Province, China [2] February 3
The Japanese 26th Division captures Linhe, Suiyuan Province, China [2] February 4 The Soviets execute Nikolai Yezhov, the head of the NKVD during the Great Purge in 1937-38; his execution remained secret until 1948. [1]
February 5 The Allies decide to send 2 British divisions to Finland via Norway despite Norwegian neutrality [2]


First sinking of a U-boat by a lone British destroyer: in convoy OA-84 off Land’s End, HMS Antelope sinks U-41 [1]

February 6 The Finnish 9th Div completes its encirclement of the Soviet 54th Div at Kuhmo
February 8 Several Finnish pockets are wiped out by the Soviets near Lake Ladoga [2]
February 10 Over 4000 members of the American Youth Congress march in Washington to protest US being drawn into imperialistic war; President Roosevelt angrily confronts them [1]


Soviet troops penetrate the Finnish defensive Mannerheim Line on Karelian Isthmus [1, 2]

February 11 Finnish troops fell back from the Mannerheim Line [2]


The Soviet Union and Germany sign a treaty to exchange Soviet raw materials for German manufactured goods [1]

February 12 The Finnish government decides to seek peace with the USSR [2]


Erwin Rommel is named the commanding officer of the 7. Panzer-Division [2]


The British minesweeper HMS Gleaner sinks the German U-boat U-33 in the Firth of Forth, capturing Enigma machine rotors [1]


Britain institutes paper rationing: newspapers, businesses, and government to decrease use by 40% [1]

February 13 Mannerheim ordered the Finnish II Army Corps to abandon the Mannerheim Line [2]


Germany declares that all British merchant ships will be regarded as warships [1]

February 14 Food rationing begins in Vatican City [2]
February 16 The HMS Cossack captures German freighter Altmark and frees POWs [2]
February 17 Norway protests British violation (Altmark incident) of Norwegian waters [1, 2]
Chinese forces drive the Japanese out of Nanning, China [1] February 18 Soviet troops begin to break the Finnish V-Line [2]
February 19 The Soviet 18th Div attacks across frozen Lake Suvanto, suffering many casualties [2]
February 20 Nikolaus von Falkenhorst is appointed to command the German invasion of Norway [2]
February 21
February 22 The Soviet 43rd Division captures Lasisaari and Koivisto, Finland [2]


A Luftwaffe He 111s accidentally damages the German destroyer Leberecht Maass, which is then sunk by a mine; the destroyer Max Schultz is sunk by a mine during rescue (588 killed) [1]

February 23 Britain announces wool shortage due to enthusiastic knitters knitting for the troops [1]
February 24 British Hawker Typhoon prototype P5212 fighter made her first flight in England


Chamberlain condemns German aggression but is still open to talks [2]


British Summer Time begins (daylight savings time moved up for wartime) [1]

February 26 The US War Department activates Air Defense Command under Brig. Gen. James Chaney [1]
February 27 Finland requests assistance from Norway and Sweden for the war against Russia [2]
March 3 In the Soviet-Finnish war, the Soviets launch a final major offensive at Viipuri, Finland [1]
March 4 Soviet and Finnish troops clash near the Vuoksi River in Viipuri [2]


The Soviets launch an offensive towards Viipuri, Finland. [1]

March 5 The USSR declares Polish officers are enemies and sentences them to death; this will lead to the Katyn Massacre [1]
March 7 Soviet troops begin to break through the final defense line at Viipuri, Finland [2]
March 8 Off the Dominican Republic, the light cruiser HMS Dunedin & destroyer HMCS Assiniboine capture the German freighter Hannover, violating Pan-American Neutrality [1]
March 9 French military intelligence takes possession of a supply of heavy water at the Norsk Hydro plant in Telemark, Norway with permission of the Norwegians [1]
March 10
March 11 Off Wilhelmshaven, British Blenheim bombers sink German U-boat U-31, which will be refloated only to be sunk again, the only U-boat to be sunk twice in WWII [1]


Britain begins meat rationing — each person to receive 1 shilling, 10 pence worth per week (about one pound); chicken, game, sausage, and meat pies are not rationed [1]


5 Soviet tanks reach Tammisuo Station in northeast Viipuri, Finland [2]

March 12 Finnish President Kallio authorizes his delegates in Moscow full powers to negotiate [2]
March 13 The Winter War ends with the Moscow Peace Treaty. Finnish and Soviet representatives signed the Moscow Peace Treaty at 0200 hours [2]


25,000 Finnish soldiers were killed; 200,000 Soviets [1]


Canada forms the Inventions Board to process weapon suggestions from civilians. Canada discontinues manufacture of civilian-use trucks. [1]

March 14 The Finnish Parliament meets and debates the ratification of the Moscow Peace Treaty [2]


Germans are required to turn in copper, bronze, brass, lead, tin, nickel, and other metals for the war effort [1]

March 15 The Finnish parliament ratifies the Moscow Peace Treaty 145 to 3 [2]
March 16 German Ju 88 dive bombers bomb the Royal Navy Home Fleet base at Scapa Flow [2]
March 19 The Royal Air Force bombs a seaplane base at Hörnum on Sylt Island, the first bombs to land on German soil during the war. [1]
March 20 Beria dispatches 11 NKVD squads to Ukraine and Byelorussia to deal with resistance [2]
March 21 Édouard Daladier resigns as Prime Minister of France after vote of no confidence from Parliament, replaced by Paul Reynaud. [1]


The first German merchant ship is sunk by a British submarine: HMS Ursula sinks German freighter Heddernheim north of Denmark [1]

April 25 British troops hold against a German attack at Kvam, Norway
Troops of the Chinese 3rd and 9th War Areas breach into southern Nanchang, China April 26
The prototype of the Douglas SBD Dauntless makes its maiden flight May 1
May 5 After a 25-day battle, the Norwegian fortress of Hegra surrenders
May 6 First flight of the Dewoitine D-750, French low-winged monoplane twin-engine 3 seat torpedo bomber prototype
May 9 The last day of the ‘Phoney War
May 10 Germany declares war on Belgium and the Netherlands as they roll through them and into France.


Winston Churchill becomes Prime Minister of the UK.

May 14 First flight of the Yermolayev Yer-2, DB240, long-range Soviet medium bomber
May 25 The 1st transport of Jews arrive at Mauthausen-Gusen Concentration Camp in Austria
May 26 The Siege of Calais ends with the surrender of British and French forces to the Germans
May 26 – June 4 Evacuation of Dunkirk – 11874 Allied personnel were evacd from Dunkerque harbor and 5930 from nearby beaches.2nd Battalion Royal Ulster Rifles held off enemy attacks in the rearguard of the BEF as the force retreated to Dunkirk

[2, 3]

June 9 The Norwegian 6th Div surrenders to the Germans; a formal armistice is planned for midnight [2]
June 10 Italy declares war on the UK and France
June 11 German troops capture Le Havre, France [2]
June 22 France Surrenders to Germany
June 23 Maxime Weygand expells Charles de Gaulle from the French Army [2]
June 25 The UK declares war on Vichy France
June 27 The British War Cabinet orders the Royal Navy to seize or destroy all French warships [2]
July Battle of Britain air war begins
The Japanese deploy the new A6M Zero fighters against Chinese forces [2] July 10
July 14 Vichy French bombers attack Gibraltar, causing no damage [2]
August 14 British, Commonwealth, and Italian troops clash near Berbera [2]
August 17 First flight of the Douglas A-20/DB-7 Havoc (Boston). French variant of the American light bomber and night fighter. [2]
August 18 The Luftwaffe launches a brutal offensive during the Battle of Britain, in what became known as the “Hardest Day” [10]
August 19 Italian troops capture Berbera, British Somaliland [2]


The North American B-25 Mitchell took its maiden flight. By the end of its production, nearly 10,000 B-25s in numerous models had been built.

August 25-26 First air raid on Berlin by RAF
September 7 Vichy French rations coffee
September 12 The Italian 10th Army advances slowly toward the Libyan-Egyptian border [2]
September 13 The Italian 1st Blackshirt Division captures Fort Capuzzo in Libya [2]
September 14 Adolf Hitler postpones Operation Sea Lion once again, this time to 17 Sep 1940 [2]
Japanese bombers attack Chongqing, China [2] September 15
September 16 The Italian 1st Blackshirt Division captures Sidi Barrani, Egypt [2]
September 21 The UK government sanctions the use of Tube stations as air raid shelters [2]
September 23 British and Free French forces clash with Vichy French forces at Dakar [2]
Japanese troops occupy Lang Son, Indochina [2] September 24-25 French bombers attack the British base at Gibraltar in retaliation for the British attack on the French Fleet at Mers-el-Kébir
France surrenders Indochina to Japan, but fighting continues [2] September 25
The Tripartite Pact signed September 27 This is an alliance between Germany, Italy, and Japan
September 27 The Tripartite Pact was signed [2]
October 2 Hitler orders the Polish gentry to be exterminated [2]
October 9 German troops begin to securing oil fields in Romaniad [2]


Winston Churchill becomes the head of the British Conservative Party [2]

October 12 British and Italian warships clash at the Battle of Cape Passero [2]
October 23 Adolf Hitler meets with Francisco Franco on the Franco-Spanish border at Hendaye [2]
October 25 16 Italian BR20M bombers attack Felixstowe and Harwich in Britain [2]
October 31 British forces land on the islands of Lemnos and Crete in southern Greece [2]
November 1 Battle of Britain air war ends


Greek troops trap a large Italian force at the mountain pass at Metsovo, Greece [2]

November 2 Italian troops reach the main Greek defensive line on the Kalamas River [2]
November 8 Free French and Vichy French troops clash near Libreville, French Equitorial Africa [2]
November 10 Occupying Nazi authorities in Belgium ban the observance of Armistice Day
November 11-12 The British attack the Italian fleet anchored at Taranto, Italy with aircraft. Half of the Italian Fleet’s capital ships were put out of action. This was the first all-aircraft ship-to-ship naval attack in history.
November 12 Vichy French forces in Gabon surrender to the Free French [2]
November 14 Greek troops began to cross the Albanian border [2]
November 20 Hungarian Prime Minister Teleki signs the Tripartite Pact in Vienna [2]
The Japanese 11th Army launches an offensive in Hubei Province, China [2] November 24 Winston Churchill sends a secret telegram to US President Roosevelt: “Spain is near starvation point”, advises the USA “dole out food” to keep Franco out of war & German hands off the Straits of Gibraltar
First flight of the Martin B-26 Marauder (B-26-MA 40-1361) at Middle River, Maryland


First flight of the de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito, (E0234/W4050)


The Japanese 11th Army launches an offensive in Hubei Province, China

November 25 The B-26 was an American twin-engine medium bomber


The Mosquito was a British multi-role twin-engine combat aircraft, originally conceived as an unarmed fast bomber

November 27 British and Italian naval forces engage in the Battle of Spartivento [2]
In Hubei, China, Chinese troops halted Japanese 11th Army offensive [2] November 30
The F4F-3 Wildcat fighter enters service with the US Navy [2] December 4
December 5 Hitler proposes a timetable for the invasion of the USSR in May of the following year [2]
December 9 British and Indian trops capture Nibeiwa, Egypt [2]


Allied forces launch Operation Compass in North Africa, the first large military operation of the Western Desert Campaign. The British took over 138,000 Italian and Libyan prisoners, hundreds of tanks, guns and aircraft.


British and Indian trops captured Nibeiwa, Egypt

December 10 Libyan 1st Division withdraws from Maktila, Egypt [2]
December 11 The British 7th Armored Brigade attacks Buq Buq, Egypt [2]
December 12 The British 7th Armored Brigade moves to cut the road into Bardia, Libya [2]
December 16 The British 4th Armoured Brigade captures Sidi Omar, Egypt [2]
December 28 Mussolini requested German aid against the Greeks in Albania [2]
1941
January 3 Australian 6th Div attacks Italian positions at Bardia, Libya [2]
January 4 Allied troops reach Bardia, Libya
January 6 Free French troops attack Murzuk airfield in southwestern Libya [2]
January 7 Australian and British troops nearly surrounded at Tobruk, Libya [2]
The Royal Thai Air Force aircraft attack French positions at Cambodia [2] January 8 The Australian 6th Division begins reconnaissance patrols around Tobruk, Libya [2]
January 9 Australians and British troops encircle Tobruk, Libya [2]
January 10 Greek troops capture Klisura Pass in Albania [2]
Japanese invaders of Hong Kong taking no prisoners – they roped together 20 British medical staff who surrendered, & bayoneted them to death [16, 20] January 12
January 11 Italian troops fail to retake Klisura Pass in Albania [2]
French Groupe Occasionnel squadron moves toward Thai-Cambodian border [2] January 15
French troops launch a successful counterattack against Thai troops in Cambodia [2] January 16 80 German Stuka dive bombers attack Valletta Harbor, Malta [2]
French warships attack Thai anchorage at Ko Chang island [2] January 17
January 18 Stuka dive bombers attacked Malta for the third consecutive day [2]
Japanese troops land at Sandakan, British North Borneo [2] January 19 Indian troops capture the rail junction Kassala, Sudan [2]
January 21 The Allies began attacking Tobruk, Libya [2]
Thai aircraft bomb an airfield in Cambodia; the final action of Franco-Thai War [2] January 24 All Italian outposts surrounding Tobruk, Libya are captured by the Allies [2]
January 25 British colonial troops march into Italian Somaliland [2]
January 26 Italian troops evacuate Mechili, Libya [2]
January 27 The troopship Ulster Prince becomes the first Allied ship to dock at newly-captured Tobruk [2]
B-10 medium bombers of the Thai 50th Bomber Sq attack Sisophon, French Cambodia [2] January 28 The British 7th Armoured Division outflanks the Italian artillery overlooking Derna, Libya [2]
An armistice is signed between Thailand and French Indo-China [11] January 31 Free French forces from Chad attack Kufra, Libya [2]
February 2 Australian troops advance west from Derna, Libya [2]
February 4 The Italians begin evacuating Benghazi, Libya [2]
February 5 British 7th Armoured Div set up roadblocks near Benghazi, cutting off the Italian retreat [2]
February 8 The newly formed German Afrika Korps begins departing Naples, Italy for North Africa [2]
February 9 Operation Compass ends


Allied troops capture El Agheila, Libya [2]

February 10 222 British aircraft attack Hannover, Germany [2]
February 11 The first German troops arrive at Tripoli, Libya [2]
February 13 There are riots in Amsterdam, with rival gangs of Dutch Fascists & Jewish self-defence leagues & other anti-Nazis fighting in the streets


The HMS Formidable launches aircraft against Italian ships at Massawa, Italian East Africa


Vichy France temporarily bans the sales of clothes due to severe shortages- northern France, occupied by Germany, is no longer exporting any textiles

February 13 The HMS Formidable launches aircraft against Italian ships at Massawa, Italian East Africa [2]
February 14 Hitler pressures Yugoslavia to join the Tripartite Pact [2]
February 15 General Platt suspended attacks near Keren to organize a larger effort [2]
February 17 An Italian Auto-Saharan Company detachment counterattacks the French and British near Kufra [2]
February 18 Free French forces besiege El Tag fort at Kufra, Libya [2]


The South African 1st Division captures Mega, Abyssinia [2]

February 19 German bombers begin a 3-day campaign against Swansea, Wales, United Kingdom [2]
February 21 Albacore aircraft from the HMS Formidable raid Massawa, Eritrea, causing little damage [2]
February 22 The British 11th and 12th African Divisions wipe out Italian positions at Jilib, Somaliland [2]
February 23 Greek and British leadership debate on a defensive strategy [2]
February 24 The British Avro Manchester bomber makes its combat debut in a Royal Air Force Bomber Command night raid on Brest, France


First flight of the British Bristol Bisley, British light bomber, Modified Bristol Blenheim which finally became the Blenheim V.

February 25 The British 11th African Division captures Mogadishu, Italian Somaliland [2[
February 26 Francisco Franco refuses request from Hitler for Spain to enter the war
February 27/td> Yosuke Matsuoka arrives in Berlin, Germany [2]
February 28 German troops enter into Bulgaria
March 1 Free French forces from Chad capture Kufra in southeastern Libya
March 3 German 5th Light Division establishes positions to block Allied advance toward Tripoli [2]
March 4 Hitler offers Yugoslavia Salonika and part of Macedonia [2]
March 5 British reinforcements from North Africa arrive in Greece [2]
March 10 The British Nigerian Brigade engages Italian units at Degehabur, Abyssinia [2]
Japan dictates that France return parts of Cambodia and Laos to Thailand [2] March 11
March 12 Winston Churchill thanks the US for the Lend-Lease Act [2]
March 15 The Indian 4th and 5th Divisions attack Italian positions near Keren, Eritrea [2]
March 16 British and Indian troops capture Fort Dologorodoc, Eritrea [2]
March 20 Erwin Rommel receives Oak Leaves to his Knights Cross [2]
March 21 The Nigerian Brigade of British 11th African Division captures Marda Pass, Abyssinia [2]
March 22 Italian troops declare Harar, Abyssinia an open city [2]
March 23 Australian troops capture Giarabub in southeastern Libya [2]
March 25 Yugoslavia signs the Tripartite Pact and secretly allows German troops passage [2]
March 26 The British Nigerian Brigade captures Harar, Abyssinia unopposed [2]
March 30 First powered flight of the Heinkel He 280, a German fighter prototype and the first turbojet-powered fighter aircraft in the world
April 24 German paratroopers capture the Corinth Canal in Greece
April 25 The German 8th Panzer Regiment departs Italy in three convoys for North Africa
April 26 The South African 1st Brigade captures Dessie, Abyssinia
May 4 The Politburo appoints Joseph Stalin the Chairman of Council of Peoples Commissars
First flight of the Republic P-47B Thunderbolt prototype May 6 The P47 or “Jug” was used in both theaters


Vichy France and Germany sign the Paris Protocol, opening Syria to German troops

May 8 Indian troops capture Falagi Pass near Amba Alagi, Abyssinia
Tokyo peace treaty officially ends the Franco-Thai War May 9
May 15 South African and Indian troops link up at Triangle Hill near Amba Alagi, Abyssinia
May 19 German aircraft attack British airfields on Crete, Greece
May 20 The Germans initiate their airborne assault on Crete, code named Operation Merkur
June 2 Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini meet again at the Brenner Pass on the Italian-Austrian border [2]
June 8 Commonwealth and Free French forces invade Vichy Syria-Lebanon [2]
June 10 Allied troops advanced toward Beirut [2]
June 12 Indian and Free French forces capture Deraa, Syria-Lebanon [2]
June 14 Croatia became the newest member of the Tripartite Pact [2]
June 18 The German 7th Panzer Div reaches Cherbourg [2]
June 22 Germany attacks Russian forces in Poland beginning the invasion of Russia and opening the Eastern Front.


Germany and Italy declare war on Russia.

June 24 The German Armeegruppe Nord moves into Lithuania [2]
June 27 German troops capture Bobruisk in Byelorussia and Przemysl in Poland [2]
June 28 German troops capture Minsk, Byelorussia [2]
June 30 German troops capture Lvov, Ukraine [2]
July 1 German 2.Panzergruppe reaches Berezina, Byelorussia [2]
July 4 German troops capture Ostrov in northern Russia [2]
July 14 The Armistice of Saint Jean d Acre is signed between France and Britain [2]


Katyusha rocket launchers are used in combat for the first time in Russia [2]

July 17 The German Armeegruppe Sud encircles 20 Soviet Army divisions near Uman, Ukraine [2]
July 26 3,800 Lithuanian Jews are killed during a pogrom in Kovno [2]
Grumman TBF Avenger torpedo bomber takes flight for the first time [2] August 1
August 8 The 6th and 12th Soviet Armies in the Uman Pocket in Ukraine are wiped out by German troops [2]
August 17 German troops captured Narva, Estonia [2]
August 18 Germans establish a bridgehead across the Dnieper River at Zaporizhia, Ukraine [2]
August 20 The German Eleventh Army captures Kherson, Ukraine [2]
The Japanese 41st Infantry Regiment lands at Buna, Papua [2] August 21 Hitler orders Leningrad to be besieged, not captured. [2]
September 14 German Armeegruppe Mitte encircles two full Soviet Armies near Kiev, Ukraine [2]
September 16 Romanian troops capture the heights northwest of Gross-Liebenthal district of Odessa [2]


Germans claim victory south of Lake Ilmen. Shooting of 10 hostages in Paris announced [11]

September 17 German forces kill 1,271 Jews in Vilnius, Lithuania [2]
September 19 German forces capture Kiev, Ukraine [2,11]
September 25 Hitler orders Leningrad to be starved into submission [2]
September 26 Soviet troops in Kiev, Ukraine began to run out of supplies [2]
September 27 23,000 Jews are massacred at Kamenets-Podolsk, Ukraine [2]


Germans claim end of encirclement battle eat of Kiev with 665,000 prisoners. Italy announces rationing of bread. [11]

September 28 The Nazis declare a state of emergency in Bohemia and Moravia, arresting premier [11]
October 3 German Armeeguppe Mitte captures Orel 220 miles SW of the Soviet capital in Moscow [2]
October 5 Leading German formations reported that they are only about 100 km from Moscow [2]
October 6 Eight Soviet Armies encircle Bryansk and Vyazma, Russia [2]
October 12 German 250th Inf Div (Spanish volunteers) is deployed on the River Volkhov at Leningrad [2]
October 14 All surviving Soviet troops in the Bryansk pocket in Russia are captured [2]
October 18 The German SS Reich and 10th Panzer Divisions capture Mozhaysk, Russia [2]
October 19 German troops defeat the Soviet forces within the Vyazma pocket in Russia [2]
October 24 The German 4th Panzer Division reaches the Chern near Moscow [2]
November 4 German 170th Division captures Feodosiya, Ukraine [2]
U.S. Secretary of State Cordell Hull learns of Japanese decision to go to war [2] November 5
November 13 Russian troops attack the Germans at Tikhvin, Russia [2]
November 17 German troops near Moscow encounter Central Asian troops for the first time [2]
November 23 Axis troops outflank British forces south of Sidi Rezegh, Libya [2]
November 25 Indian 7th Brgd. repulses an attack by German 5th Panzer Regiment at Sidi Omar, Libya [2[
US Consulate Warns Americans to Get Out of Japan November 26 Soviet troops re-open the Tula-Moscow rail line in Russia [2]
Washington issues a “war warning” to U.S. forces at Pearl Harbor. It advises commanders to prepare for a Japanese surprise attack *somewhere* in the Pacific. November 27 Siege of Tobruk ends


The German SS Reich Division captures Istra west of Moscow, Russia [2]

December 2 Motorcycle scouts of 2nd Panzer Div claimed to have reached Khimki, 10 miles NW of Kremlin [2]
December 3 The German 4th Army is halted at Naro-Fominsk west of Moscow, Russia [2]
Japanese submarines receive Pearl Harbor attack plans [2] December 4
Japan attacks Perl Harbor.


Japan declares war on both the US and the UK

December 7
The US and the UK declare war on Japan December 8 German troops begin to fall back away from Moscow [2]


The first group of Jews were deported & murdered in mobile gas chambers in  Kulmhof (Chełmno). The first German extermination camp began its operation.

Japanese and British troops clash at the airfield at Kota Bharu, British Malaya [2] December 9
HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse, which had been sent to protect Singapore, were destroyed by overwhelming Japanese air power [2] December 10 The siege of Tobruk, Libya is lifted [2]
The US Office of Price Administration . . .


A furious assault by the Japanese forces invading Hong Kong breaches the “Gin Drinker’s Line” of defences & forts, which the British hoped to hold for months. The Gin-Drinker’s Line, 18km of bunkers, trenches & artillery posts built to be guarded by 30,000 men, has less than 10,000 defenders- mostly new recruits [16]


Japanese troops land at Legaspi, Luzon, Philippine Islands [2]

December 11 . . . begins restricing car tire sales [5]


Germany and Italy declare war on the US.


The US declares war on both Germany and Italy.

Japanese 5th Division attacks Jitra, British Malaya [2] December 12
All British troops withdraw from Kowloon onto Hong Kong island December 13 Soviet troops attack near Moscow, forcing the Germans to fall back [2]
Stocks of rubber are destroyed in Malaya to prevent Japanese capture [2] December 15
Japanese troops land on British Borneo [2] December 16
Japanese troops capture Penang, Malaya [2] December 19 Italian frogmen sink the Queen Elizabeth and Valiant with limpet mines [2]
British, Canadian & Indian troops in Hong Kong launch a furious counterattack on the Japanese beachhead, but fail to push the invaders off the island [16, 20] December 20 Soviet troops attack west from Tula, Russia [2]
The Japanese 55th Div, in Bangkok, prepare to cross into Burma [2] December 22 First flight of the Fairey Firefly, British carrier-borne fighter and anti-submarine aeroplane [8]
American troops begin withdrawing toward Bataan Peninsula in Philippines [2]


The Japanese Maizuru Second Special Naval Landing Force lands on Wake Atoll [2]

December 23
Japanese slaughtered soldiers, docs, nurses at St Stephen hospital in Hong Kong [2] December 24
Hong Kong surrenders to Japan December 25
Chinese troops ambushed Japanese attackers at Changsha, China [2] December 27
The Japanese 16th Division captures Luisiana, Philippines [2] December 28
December 29 The Soviet 44th Army lands at Feodosiya to reinforce Sevastopol [2]
The Japanese Lingayen Force captures Tarlac, Philippines [2] December 30 German troops retreat from Kerch, Russia [2]/td>
1942
The US War Production Board . . .


Japanese troops continue the assault on Kampar, British Malaya [2]

January 1 . . . orders a temporary end on cimilian auto sales [5]


Enemy aliens traveling in the US must get prior approval [5]


Kittyhawk fighters see combat in North Africa for the first time [2]

Japanese troops capture the open city of Manila, Philippines [2]


Japanese and Indian troops clash at Kampar Hill, Malaya [2]

January 2
US-Filipino troops fall back to the Guagua-Porac defensive line in the Philippines [2] January 3
Japanese aircraft bomb Dutch positions on Ambon, Dutch East Indies for the first time [2] January 6
Japanese troops capture the bridges over Slim River in Malaya [2]


Japanese make probing attacks at opening of the Bataan peninsula in the Philippines [2]

January 7
Japanese troops penetrate the outer lines of defense at Kuala Lumpur, Malaya [2] January 8
The main offensive against the Bataan Peninsula in the Philippines begains [2]


Japanese troops begin to fall back from Changsha, China [2]

January 9 The Soviet 3rd and 4th Shock Armies attack German defenses south of Demyansk, Russia [2]
January 10 The Soviet 29th Army attacks north of Rhzev, Russia [2]
Japanese troops execute Dutch POWs at Tarakan for their sabotage of oil wells January 12 The South African 1st Division captures Sollum, Egypt
Japanese forces advance into Burma [2]


Japanese troops cross the Kelamah River into Australian ambush [2]

January 14
The Japanese 4th and 5th Imperial Guard Rgmts engage Indian troops at Muar River, Malaya [2]


Chinese troops repulse the Japanese attack on Changsha, Hunan Province, China [2]

January 15
British and Japanese troops engage in the first major clash in Burma [2] January 16
The Indian 45th Brigade withdraws from Bukit Bakri, British Malaya [2] January 17 5,000 Axis troops surrender to the South African 6th Infantry Brigade in Egypt [2]
The Dutch begin to destroy oil facilities at Balikpapan, Dutch Borneo [2] January 18 The German 11.Armee captures Feodosiya in the Crimea region of Russia [2]
The Indian and Australian retreat from Bakri, Malaya is cut off by the Japanese [2] January 20
Japanese troops penetrate the west side of the Abucay-Mauban defensive line [2] January 21
Japanese troops land on New Ireland and capture Kavieng [2] January 22
The Japanese Sasebo Combined Special Naval Landing Force sets sail for Kendari, Celebes [2] January 23 The Soviet 3rd Shock Army surrounds 5,500 German troops at Kholm, Russia [2]
Japanese aircraft attack Rangoon, Burma for the second day in a row [2]


Four Japanese transports are sunk at the Battle of Makassar Strait [2]

January 24
Japanese troops capture Batu Pahat, British Malaya [2]


US-Filipino troops continue to withdraw from the Abucay-Mauban line on Bataan [2]

January 25
January 26 The first American soldiers deployed to Europe land in Belfast, Co. Antrim Northern Ireland
Japanese troops capture the Singkawang II airfield on Dutch Borneo [2] January 27 Rommel directs his main force toward Benghazi, Libya [2]
US and Filipino troops wipe out the Japanese beachhead at Longoskawayan Point [2] January 28 Indian troops destroy port facilities at Benghazi as the Germans approach [2]
British colonial administrators flee British Malaya for Singapore [2]


The Japanese land at Pemangkat in west Borneo [11]

January 29
British troops in the southern tip of Malaya complete the withdrawal into Singapore [2]


400 Japanese troops land at Adang Bay, Borneo [2]

January 30 Hunger is driving many Leningraders to cannibalism: in the last 10 days alone, NKVD have discovered 42 corpses with thighs & breasts hacked off for meat. [28]
Japanese 55th Infantry Division captures Moulmein, Burma [2]


Allied military engineers blow up the causeway connecting Singapore to mainland Malaya – Japanese forces are now just 15 miles away from the city [20. 28]

January 31 Civilian auto production halted. Manufacturing capacity began to to be repurposed for defense production. [5]
PT boats and P-40 aircraft repulse Japanese attempt to land on Bataan February 1
Japanese aircraft drive Allied warships away from Singapore [2] February 2 The Soviet 3rd Shock Army attacks German troops trapped in Kholm, Russia [2]
Burmese and Indian troops withdraw from Martaban, Burma toward the Bilin River [2]


Port Moresby, New Guinea is bombed by the Japanese, increasing the threat to Australia posed by Japan [11]


The first air raid on naval base of Soerabaya in Java. Bataan defenders beat off Japanese attempt at night landing by sea [11]

February 3 German forces counterattack toward Vyazma, encircling several Soviet divisions [2]
British authorities in Singapore turn down a Japanese demand for surrender [2] February 4
The carrier Hosho launches sorties against Chinese positions in Shanghai [2]


Japanese troops make a feint towards the Pulau Ubin island to the east of Singapore [2]

February 5
Japanese aircraft attack Palembang, Sumatra, Dutch East Indies February 7
Japanese Sasebo Combined Special Naval Landing Force lands at Makassar, Celebes [2] February 8 Soviet troops encircle 90,000 Germans at Demyansk, Russia [2]
The battle of Singapore begins


Japanese troops capture Tengah airfield at Singapore [2]

February 9 Soviet troops encircle 90,000 Germans at Demyansk, Russia
The RAF withdraws the small number of aircraft from Singapore to prevent Japanese capture [2] February 10 Soap is now rationed in Britain, to save valuable fats & shipping space; 4 ounces of soap can be bought per person per week for washing clothes & bodies. [28]


British families are rationed to 5 inches of bath water, once a week, to save fuel; Britons joke they now “stink for victory”. [28]

The Japanese 5th Div attacks Allied troops at Bukit Timah Hill in Singapore [2] February 11
Japanese attack the Australian mainland, Darwin, for the first time February 12 British aircraft unexpectedly find a German fleet sailing through English Channel [2]
Japanese troops capture Bandjarmasin, the capital of Dutch Borneo [2] February 13
Japanese soldiers enter the Alexandra Hospital. A massacre of wounded Allied soldiers, nurses and doctors follows; those who survive do so by playing dead


Adnan bin Saidi is tied to a tree and bayoneted to death by the Japanese [2]

February 14 First flight of the Douglas C-54 (DC-4 for the civilian version), 4-engine propeller-driven airliner used by the US in WWII and beyond
Singapore surrenders to Japan


Japanese troops penetrate Indian defensive lines north of Rangoon [2]

February 15
The Sook Ching Massacre begins; thousands of ethnic Chinese Singaporeans will die [2] February 16
Japanese troops cross the Bilin River north of Rangoon, Burma [2]


Nobuo Fujita flies a reconnaissance mission over Sydney harbor [2]

February 17
Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 [2]


Japanese aircraft raid Darwin, Australia

February 19 This allows Japanese-Americans to be gathered up and sent to internment camps
Japanese troops overrun Portuguese defenders at Dili [2] February 20
German spy Bernard Kuehn is arrested in Hawaii [2] February 21
Roosevelt personally orders General MacArthur to leave the Philippines [2] February 22 The British 11th and 12th African Divisions wipe out Italian positions at Jilib, Somaliland
Sittang railway bridge in Burma is blown up to prevent its capture by the Japanese [2] February 23
February 25 The Soviets began trials for a new submachine gun to succeed PPSh-41 [2]
US FBI agents begin to relocate Japanese-American civilians in Los Angeles February 26
US authorities round up 112,000 Japanese-Americans for internment March 1
Japanese troops force the Indian 17th Infantry Division out of Payagyi, Burma [2] March 3
Second attack on Perl Harbor by the Japanese

Japanese troops enveloped Chinese troops at Toungoo, Burma [2]

Dutch troops evacuated from Batavia and Leuwiliang, Java [2]

March 4
Anglo-Indian and Japanese troops clash at various roadblocks near Rangoon, Burma [2] March 6
Japanese troops reach Tjilatjap, Java, Dutch East Indies [2] March 7
March 8
Japanese troops enter undefended Rangoon, Burma [2] March 9 An order is given to cease production of the T-60 and replace it with the T-70. These light tanks would go on to become the second most numerous tank in the Red Army. [22]
MacArthur once again receives orders to evacuate Philippines [2] March 10
Japanese troops land on Mindanao, Philippines [2] March 11
March 12
March 13
March 14
MacArthur departs Philippines by B-17 bomber for Australia [2] March 15
Announcement that American troops have arrived in Australia [11] March 16 Belzec Concentration Camp is established in occupied Poland [2]
March 17
March 18
March 19
March 20 Mitsubishi J2M Raiden aircraft takes its first flight [2]


MacArthur makes the I Shall Return speech at Terowie, Australia [2]

MacArthur discovers there is no army waiting for him to take back the Philippines [2] March 21
American and British airmen abandon the airfield in Magwe in Burma [2] March 22 Mass exterminations of Jews using Zyklon B gas begins at Auschwitz [2]
Japanese 18th Infantry Division lands at Port Blair, Andaman Islands [2]


US Navy intelligence in the Philippines cautiously links Japanese code AF to Midway [2]

March 23
March 24
March 16 The Belzec Concentration Camp is established in occupied Poland
First flight of the Mitsubishi J2M Raiden ‘Jack’, single-engine land-based fighter aircraft used by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service in WWII March 20
Japanese bombers attack US field hospital No. 1 at Bataan despite being marked with large red crosses March 30
Japanese troops capture Mandalay, Burma April 6
Doolittle leads US air raid on Japan April 18
The Japanese 18th Infantry Division captures Yamethin, Burma April 24
Japanese troops massacre entire Chinese villages suspected of aiding Doolittle Raiders April 25
A national “Victory Speed” limit is set . . .


The Japanese 18th Infantry Division captures Mandalay, Burma

May 1 . . . in the US of 35 MPH which lasted until after the end of the war [5]
The Japanese 3rd Kure Special Landing Force captures Tulagi Island and Gavutu Island May 3
Japanese troops capture Bhamo, Burma May 4
The Battle of the Coral Sea May 4 – 8
May 5 The German 16th Army brakes through to Kholm, Russia
The US begins gasoline rationing May 15 to support the war effort
First flight of the P-61 May 21 This night fighter was used in both Theaters of the war
Japanese and Chinese troops clash along the Hsipaw-Mogok road in northern Burma May 23
May 27 SS-Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich was shot in Prague by British SOE agents and died June 4. Nazi intelligence falsely linked the assassins to the villages of Lidice and Ležáky. Both villages were razed; all men and boys over the age of 16 were shot, and all but a handful of the women and children were deported and killed in Nazi concentration camps.
May 30-31 First ‘1000 bomber raid‘ by the RAF against Cologne
U.S. warships ambush a Japanese task force off Midway. Japan loses four carriers and nearly 250 warplanes in the ensuing battle [4] June 4
Japanese troops occupy Kiska, Aleutian Islands, US Territory of Alaska [2] June 7
June 10 The Nazis burn the Czech village of Lidice as a reprisal for the killing of SS official Reinhard Heydrich [4]
On his 18th birthday George H. W. Bush enlists in the US Navy June 12 He is later elected the 41st President of the United States and serves from 1989 to 1993
June 13 German forces surround the British troops in the Knightsbridge box near Tobruk [2]


German troops capture Fort Stalin at Sevastopol [2]

June 16 Axis troops attack El Adem and Sidi Rezegh near Tobruk, Libya [2]
June 20 Axis troops enter Tobruk; British troops have destroyed stocks of fuel and supplies [2]
Fort Stevens in Oregon is shelled by Japanese submarine I-25 but the attack causes no real damage [5] June 21-22
June 29 The German 90th Light Division reaches Sidi Abdel Rahman, Egypt [2]
June 30 Axis troops reach El Alamein, Egypt [2]
July 6 The German 4th Panzer Army reaches the outskirts of Voronezh, Russia [2]
July 9 The German 6th Army reaches Rossosh, Russia [2]
First flight of the Douglas XA-26 Invader prototype July 10 American twin-engine light attack bomber [8]
July 18 First flight of the German ME-262 jet-powered aircraft [2]
Japanese forces land at Gona in modern Papua New Guinea. This was the beginning of the Kokoda Track campaign. The invasion, intent on capturing Port Moresby and threatening Australia, was thwarted by forces led by the Australian Army. July 21-27
July 26 Japanese troops attack Oivi, Australian Papua at 1500 hours [2]
The United States Navy receives its first deliveries of the Vought F4U-1 Corsair [9] July 31
The US Marines land on Guadalcanal [2] August 7
Battle of Guadalcanal begins August 8
August 10 German troops reach the Krasnodar-Pyatigorsk-Maikop line in southern Russia [2]
2 Japanese transports arrive at Buna, Papua and disembarked reinforcements [2] August 18
A Japanese floatplane drops incendiary bombs on an Oregon forest, the first and only air attack on the U.S. mainland during the war September 9
September 12 6,200 Japanese troops attack near Henderson Field, starting the Battle of Bloody Ridge [2]
September 14 Japanese forces continue to attack Henderson Field at Guadalcanal without success [2]
September 16 The German 502nd Tank Battalion receives the first batch of Tiger I tanks [2]
Japanese forces reach to within 32 miles of Port Moresby [11] September 17
September 20 The Nazis claim to have reached the Volga in the center of Stalingrad [11]
The prototype of the B-29 Superfortress makes its maiden flight [9] September 21
US Marines attack Japanese positions at Matanikau River on Guadalcanal but fail [2] September 26
September 30 Danish Resistance begins smuggling over 7000 Jews to Sweden by fishing boats
October 3 First successful launch of a V2 from Peenemunde


82d Fighter Group squadrons begin arriving at Eglington, Co Derry, Ireland from the US with P-38s

October 6 The German III.Panzer Korps captures Malgobek on the Terek River in the Caucasus [2]
The US Marines cross the Matanikau River on Guadalcanal to raid Japanese positions [2] October 7
Six Japanese destroyers land 1,000 troops on Guadalcanal [2] October 14
3,000+ Japanese troops land at Tassafaronga, Guadalcanal [2] October 15
October 18 Germany announces that neutral ships in Allied convoys will be sunk without warning [1]
October 19 The Kings African Rifles regiment captures 800 Vichy French troops in Madagascar [2]
October 29 German troops reach Nalchik, 50 miles away from Grozny oil fields [2]
November 2 German forces are halted 5 miles outside of Ordshonikidze, Azerbaijan [2]
November 4 German 170th Division captured Feodosiya, Ukraine
November 5 The Vichy French forces on Madagascar surrender [2]
November 8 Allied forces invade North Africa confronting the Vichy French and Germans
November 10
November 11 Allies make a controversial deal with Vichy French Admiral Darlan in Algiers to achieve the surrender of French forces


German and Italian troops occupied Vichy France


British 36th Infantry Brigade lands at Bougie, Algeria unopposed.

November 12 The British 3rd Parachute Battalion captures the airfield at Bone, Algeria 2]
November 17 The Italians formally absorb French Tunisia into Italian North Africa [2]
The US Army and Marines attack Japanese positions near Kokumbona on Guadalcanal [2] November 18
November 20 British troops capture Benghazi, Libya
November 21 German paratroopers attack British positions near Djebel Abjod, Tunisia [2]
US Army-Marine attack at Matanikau River on Guadalcanal is stopped by Japanese November 22
November 23 The SPARS (Coast Guard Women’s Reserve) is founded. SPARS is an acronym for the #CoastGuard motto “Semper Paratus—Always Ready. [15]
November 24 The US Marines advance to Poho, Guadalcanal [2]
November 25 Adolf Hitler orders that the French fleet at Toulon, France be seized
November 27 The French Navy scuttles warships to avoid German capture [2]
November 29 Coffee rationed to one pound every 5 weeks in the US
Gasoline rationing was begun . . . December 1 . . . across the US and lasted until after the end of the war


German 10th Panzer Division launches a counterattack in Tunisia

December 2 British and German paratroops clash at El Fedja, Tunisia [2]
December 4 The British 2nd Parachute Battalion links up with US troops near Medjez-el-Bab, Tunisia [2]
December 6 811 Dutch Jews arrive at Auschwitz; 795 were gassed upon arrival [2]
US Army takes over the Guadalcanal campaign from the US Marine Corps [2] December 9
American troops capture Buna, New Guinea December 13
Australian troops capture Gona, New Guinea [2] December 14
US Marines capture Mt. Austen, Guadalcanal December 17
British troops enter Arakan Peninsula, Burma [2] December 21
December 22 German troops in the Caucasus region began to fall back [2]
December 23 Bob Hope performs his first wartime Christmas show [15]
December 24 French Admiral Darlan assassinated
The Japanese Ki-67 medium bomber took its maiden flight [2] December 27 Hitler authorizes Armeegruppe A and Armeegruppe Don to withdraw 150 miles [2]
Japanese 16th Division captured Luisiana, Philippines December 28
1943
January 3 Soviet troops capture Mozdok, Russia [2]
January 14 Casablanca Conference of Allied leaders begins
The US 25th Division began an offensive toward Kokumbona, Guadalcanal [2] January 20
January 21 The Soviets capture Voroshilovsky and Stavropol in the Caucasus region [2]
US 25th Division capture the high ground south of Kokumbona, Guadalcanal [2] January 23 British forces capture Tripoli


The last German airfield in the the Stalingrad pocket is taken by Soviet troops [2]

January 24 Casablanca Conf ends with Allied leaders demanding German unconditional surrender [2]
January 25 The remnants of the German 6.Armee are split in two pockets in Stalingrad [2]
January 26
January 27
January 28
US and Japanese warships engage in the Battle of Rennell Island [2] January 29 Soviet troops capture Maikop, Russia [2]


Russians take Kropotkin [11]

January 30 de Havilland Mosquitos attack a broadcasting station in Berlin, Germany disrupting speeches by Goring and Goebbels [9]


Commander Edward Travis sets up the Newmanry at Bletchley Park. The section is created to mechanize the process of breaking German ciphers  – something that has previously been done by hand [27]

January 31 The bulk of the German Sixth Army surrenders at Stalingrad; last of resistance ends Feb. 2 [11]
Japanese evacuation of Guadalcanal begins February 1
February 3 Coffee rationing increased to one pound every six weeks in the US


The German OKW announces the defeat at Stalingrad, Russia [2]

February 4 Soviet troops land near Novorossiysk in southern Russia [2]
February 5 Colossus, the world’s 1st digital programmable computer is used for the 1st time [29]
Battle of Guadalcanal ends February 8
The F4U-1 Corsair fighter makes their operational debut 200 miles north of Guadalcana February 13
February 14 German troops attack the Americans at Sidi Bouzid, Tunisia [2]
February 15 The Americans loose 46 medium tanks in action at Sidi Bouzid, Tunisia [2]
February 16 German forces capture Sidi Bouzid and Sbeitla, Tunisia [2]
February 18 Goebbels announces the implementation of total war at the Berlin Sportpalast [2]
The Northern Group of the Chindits reaches Tonmakeng, Burma [2] February 22
February 23 The inexperienced Americans suffer a major defeat at the Battle for Kasserine Pass [2]
February 20 German and Italian troops defeat American troops at Kasserine Pass in Tunisia
February 25 The inexperienced Americans suffer a major defeat at the Battle for Kasserine Pass in North Africa
March 17 US troops capture Gafsa, Tunisia
March 23 US troops repulse German 10th Panzer Div counterattack at El Guettar, Tunisia
April 15 First P-47 in aerial combat. The 800-mile combat range extended Allied fighter coverage deep into mainland Europe from Britain.
March 30 British troops led by Montgomery breach the Mareth Line in North Africa
March 31 Crematorium 2 began operation at Auschwitz Concentration Camp in occupied Poland
April 3 The US 1st Inf Division captures Hill 369 near El Guettar, Tunisia
US Office of Price Administration ends meat rationing. May 3 Exception is for steak and choice beef (rationing is tightened again later)


US troops capture Mateur, Tunisia

May 5 Soviet troops capture Krymsk in southern Russia
Japanese troops capture Anxiang, Hunan Province, China May 7
Japanese troops capture Maungdaw, Burma May 8
May 12 The Trident Conference began in Washington, DC, United States
May 13 Axis forces in North Africa surrender
May 27 Churchill meets with Allied leaders in Algeria to plan the invasion of Sicily and the Italian campaign
May 16-17 British RAF fly ‘Dam Buster‘ mission against dams in the Ruhr valley. Two of the Ruhr region dams in Germany were breached by British bombers.
US troops mop up the final Japanese opposition groups in the Aleutian Islands May 24
June 22 Stutthof Concentration Camp conducted its first gassing [2]
June 25 The construction of gas chamber and crematorium III was completed at the German Nazi Auschwitz II-Birkenau camp. It had 210 sq. meters gas chamber and five 3-muffled crematoria ovens that could burn up to 1440 corpses per 24-hours [6]
June 27 The hydroelectric dams in the Ruhr region damaged by Dambuster Raid return to full capacity [2]
The US 1st Raider Battalion attacks the island of Enogai [2] July 9 Allied forces invade Sicily
The US Army and Marines jointly launch an offensive on New Georgia [2] July 17
July 28 Coffee removed from rationing in the US
September 3 Allied forces invade Italy
September 8 Gen. Dwight Eisenhower publicly announces the surrender of Italy to the Allies.
September 9 Allied forces invade Salerno, Italy with Operation Avalanche
September 10 Remaining Italian fleet sails into Malta and surrenders to the Allies
September 11 German forces occupy Rome and Northern Italy, taking most of the Italian army prisoner


The British 1st Airborne Division captures Brindisi and Bari, Italy without resistance [2]

September 12 German Luftwaffe and SS personnel rescue Mussolini from Gran Sasso, Italy. [2]
September 16 Russians take Novorossisk, Lozovaya, Romny, Novgorod-Seversky. Allies take Lae, occupy Bari. Landings on Kos, Leros, Samos [11]
September 17 The British 5th Infantry Division reache Sapri, Italy. [2]


Russian forces take Briansk and Ossipenko [11]

Australian troops launch an offensive in Ramu valley, New Guinea [2] September 19 Russian forces take Yartsevo, Priluki, Krasnograd [11]
September 21-28 After Italy surrenders, Italian troops on the island of Cephalonia, Greece refused to surrender their weapons to the Germans. The Massacre of the Acqui Division, also known as the Cephalonia Massacre, was the mass execution of the men of the Italian 33rd Infantry Division Acqui by German troops. About 5,000 soldiers were massacred and others drowned.
September 22 The British 78th Infantry Division begins to arrive at Bari, Italy [2]
Operation Jaywick by 14 British and Australian commandos culminates in the attack on Japanese ships in Singapore harbor sinking or severely damaging 7 vessels September 26
September 27 US 8th Air Force P-47 fighters escort bombers into Germany for the first time


The British 78th Infantry Division captures the major airfield complex near Foggia, Italy [2]

October 1 German troops begin evacuating Naples. US 8th Fifth Army and British X Corps enters Naples, Italy [2]
October 3 British Commandos land at  Termoli on the Adriatic coast of Italy as part of Operation Devon.
October 4 Aircraft from the USS Ranger attack German ships in Norway sinking two and damaging several others.
October 5 The German 16th Panzer Div nearly wipes out the British bridgehead on near Termoli, Italy [2]
A force of three U.S. destroyers attacked nine Japanese destroyers in the central Solomons. This is known as the “Battle of Vella Lavella,” and was the last significant Japanese victory of WWII October 6-7
Japanese execute all 98 US civilian construction POWs on Wake Island in reprisal for US air raids October 7
The First Major Attack on Rabaul. Over 100 B-25s from the 345th and 38th Bomb Groups, three P-38 squadrons, 40 planes from the 3rd Bomb Group, and more than 80 B-24s from the 90th and 43rd Bomb Groups joined forces with RAAF P-40s, Beaufighters, and Beauforts. October 12
US Marines land on Shortland and Choiseul in the Solomons as a diversion from the upcoming Bougainville landings October 28
The Japanese execute 33 interned civilians in Hong Kong


Allied forces land on Mono and Stirling Islands, south of Bougainville, beginning the final phase of the campaign to smash Japan’s northern Solomons bases

October 29
US 3rd Marine Div lands on Bougainville in the Solomons at Empress Augusta Bay November 1
The USAAF attacks the Japanese base at New Britain in what was known as “Bloody Tuesday”. 45 airmen were lost with Eight B-25s and nine P-38s shot down during the attack. November 2
November 3 British 78th Inf Div reached San Salvo north of the Trigno River in Italy.


US Eighth Air Force sends 566 B-17’s and B-24’s along with 333 P-47’s and 45 P-38’s to hit Wilhelmshaven, its first mission of over 500 bombers.


Nazis massacre 18,000 Jewish slave laborers outside Majdanek concentration camp in largest single-day, single-location killing of the Holocaust


Soviet troops launch a massive breakout attack from their bridgehead north of Kiev

November 4 US Fifth Army captures Isernia, Italy [2]


The 8th AF continues to grow with today’s arrival of the 446th Bomb Group at Flixton with B 24s. This is the 31st US bomb unit to arrive in the UK.

Aircraft from the USS Saratoga attack the Japanese ships in Rabaul, damaging nearly all and forcing them to leave for repairs. November 5 8th AF flies over heavily defended Gelsenkirchen and Munster in the Ruhr Valley. The mission includes 323 B 17s escorted by over 350 fighters.
November 6 Russian army retakes Kiev, Ukraine
SB2C Helldiver aircraft saw combat for the first time in the Solomon Islands


More than 300 aircraft consisting of US carrier and land-based Navy aircraft, bombers of the US Fifth & Thirteenth Air Force, and the Royal Australian Air Force raid the Japanese base at Rabaul

November 11
November 16 The power station at Rjukan, Norway where the Germans were producing ‘heavy water’ for their nuclear program is bombed by the 8th Air Force and damaged sufficiently to stop production
Australian 9th Division launches an offensive to take Sattelberg, New Guinea November 17
The Chinese 57th Division captures Changde, Hunan Province, China [2] November 18
November 19 Nazis liquidate Janowska concentration camp in Lvov, prisoners make a mass escape attempt, a few succeed
US Marines land on Betio Island in Tarawa Atoll in the Gilbert Islands November 20 British Eighth Army launches the main offensive to cross Sangro River in Italy
Battle of Tarawa November 20-23
November 21 The RAF creates No. 1426 (Enemy Aircraft) Flight “the Rafwaffe” to evaluate captured enemy aircraft


German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel is placed in command of Atlantic Wall defenses in France to defend against an Allied invasion

November 22 The RAF launches the first 2000-ton night raid on Berlin—2000 Germans are killed and the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church is destroyed


Lebanon’s Independence Day: Free French provisionally recognize Lebanese independence


Sextant Conference begins in Cairo, Egypt with Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Chiang Kai-shek

US Marines secure Betio in Tarawa Atoll. Japanese resistance ends on Tarawa and Makin atolls in the Gilbert Islands. November 23
Australians take Sattelberg, New Guinea November 25 Colossus Computer is first tested in Birmingham, England, the world’s first all-electric computer. It was used at Bletchley Park to help decypher German codes.
November 26 The Me 262 was demonstrated at Insterburg; Hitler insisted it be converted a bomber [2]
November 28 Eureka Conference begins in Tehran, Iran: Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin agree to a spring 1944 invasion of western Europe and a Soviet declaration of war on Japan after Germany’s defeat.
November 29 British troops capture Mezzagrogna and Santa Maria in Italy
November 30 British troops capture Fossacesia, Italy [2]
December 1 US Ninth Air Force P-51s fly a sweep over France as the first use of US P-51 Mustang fighter planes in Europe


Mussolini orders arrest of all Jews in Italy, but many are hidden by Italians

December 2 Luftwaffe bombs Bari, Italy, destroying 24 Allied ships. Bombs strike a US ship carrying secret chemical weapons. A cloud of deadly mustard gas spreads throughout the damaged ships killing service personnel and Italian civilians. About 1000 soldiers, sailors & civilians are killed in the attack.


The German 26th Panzer Div fortified Orsogna, Italy on the Gustav Line [2]

December 3 New Zealand troops attack Orsogna, Italy on the Gustav Line [2]
December 6 The US Fifth Army captures Monte Carnino, Italy [2]
December 8 In their first combat action for the Allies, Italian troops attack Monte Lungo, Italy. They are repelled with heavy casualties.


Colossus, the world’s first ever digital programmable electronic computer, built by British Telecoms research engineers Tommy Flowers and team, goes live for the first time ever at the GPO research station at Dollis Hill in London

US airfield opens at Torokina on Bougainville in the Solomon Islands, only 220 miles from major Japanese base at Rabaul. December 9 Canadian troops capture San Leonardo, Italy


British Eighth Army secures Moro River beachhead near Ortona, Italy

December 10 The British Eighth Army takes Vino Ridge in Italy in drive for Ortona
December 12 Field Marshal Erwin Rommel named commander of German Army Group B in France
Ration books in the US December 13 are awarded an extra two red ration points (used for meat, cheese & fats) are awarded for each pound of used cooking fats turned in
US Army Air Force decides to stop using camouflage paint on planes December 14 to increase speed & range
December 17 US Fifth Army takes San Pietro, Italy, after Germans retreat


Wings are first awarded to WASPs (Women’s Airforce Service Pilots)

December 22 Allies officially recognize and agree to support Marshal Tito’s partisans in Yugoslavia.
December 24 New Zealand troops engage in combat along the Gustav Line in Italy [2]
US Marines land at Cape Gloucester, New Britain in the Solomon Islands December 26 In the Battle of the North Cape off Norway, British ships sink German battlecruiser Scharnhorst while it’s attacking Allied Arctic convoys
December 28 Adolf Hitler orders the demolition of the Wehrwolf HQ in Ukraine [2]
British & Indian forces launch the Second Arakan Campaign toward Akyab, Burma December 30
1944
January 6 James Doolittle orders fighters of USAAF Eighth Air Force to go on the offensive
January 8 The Pz.Kpfw.38(t)-18 tank destroyer was approved. Initially, it was supposed to weigh only 13 tons, but the final Jagdpanzer 38(t) design weighted 16 tons, which had a negative impact on performance [22]
Indian 5th Division captures Maungdaw, Burma [2] January 9
January 11 The US 8th Air Force launches over 600 bombers against German cities [2]
January 13 Allied troops capture the high ground north of Cervaro, Italy
January 14 Eligibility for the draft is restored for Japanese-American Nisei, causing mixed reactions in internment camps
January 15 The German XIV Panzer Corps abandons Monte Trocchio, Italy [2]
Japanese on New Britain in the Solomons fail in their final counterattack attempt January 16
US Army and Marines secure Arawe area on New Britain in the Solomons January 17 British X Corps crosses lower Garigliano River in Italy, officially beginning the Battle of Cassino
January 21 The “Little Blitz” begins, a new German air offensive on England: 447 bombers attack London at night, the largest air raid since July 1942
January 22 The War Refugee Board is established to help resettle European Jews in the US


36,000 US and British troops land at Anzio, Italy, and establish a solid beachhead with little opposition; the towns of Anzio and Nettuno are secured [2]

Australians take Shaggy Ridge in the Finisterre Mountains of New Guinea, securing Huon Peninsula January 23
January 24 German bombers sink British hospital ship St. David off Anzio with Hs-293 guided missile; 96 killed, including 2 British nurses
Argentina severs relations with Germany and Japan January 26 After a vast Axis spy ring is uncovered in the country
January 27 Soviet troops end the 872 day Siege of Leningrad
Americanforces land on Kwajalein and Majuro atolls in the Marshall Islands January 31
Japanese open offensive against Indian troops on Arakan, Burma


US secures Kwajalein and Majuro Islands in Kwajalein Atoll

February 4
February 5 The Colossus Computer at Bletchley Park in England is first used to decode German messages


US forces reach the outskirts of Cassino, Italy

February 6 Soviet troops make a major breakthrough in the Ukraine and reach the Dnieper River near Nikopol


Fighter planes of the US Eighth Air Force are out on first ground strafing mission

US forces secure Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands February 7
February 11 The Russian Army takes Shepetovka, the rail center west of Kiev in the Ukraine
Military of New Zealand occupy the Green Islands, only 100 miles from the important Japanese base at Rabaul February 15
February 16 The Germans launch “Fischfang” offensive at Anzio; it is the first use of German Panther tanks in the west. It fails due to muddy terrain
Troops of the U.S. 22nd Marine Regiment begin to land on Engebi Island, facing 3,500 Japanese defenders beginning the Battle of Eniwetok February 17
February 18 Hitler dissolves the Abwehr (German military intelligence) after evidence of infiltration by Allied agents and resistance members


The RAF launches Operation Jericho. Mosquitos & Typhoons bomb the German prison in Amiens that is holding members of the French resistance. Of the 1000 prisoners, 102 are killed and 258 escape

The Japanese air & naval base at Rabaul is neutralized by Allied forces. The last of the Japanese planes have been moved to Truk February 19
February 20 Norwegian Resistance fighters blow up ferry Hydro carrying the only German shipment of heavy water (for atomic bomb) on Lake Tinnsjø, Norway


US Airforce launches the Big Week, sending 970 bombers against German cities. This week-long aerial attack devastates the German aircraft industry; 6000 sorties by bombers of RAF and US Eighth, Ninth & Fifteenth Air Forces

US secures Eniwetok Island in Eniwetok Atoll, lands on and takes 7 other islands in the atoll February 21
US secures Eniwetok Atoll and all Marshall Islands, the first time Japanese lose prewar territory February 22 Mark Clark replaces John Lucas with Lucian Truscott at Anzio, Italy [2]
February 24 Colossus, the world’s first large-scale electronic digital computer, enters service at Bletchley Park and is soon in use to help decrypt German teleprinter messages from the Lorenz cipher machine
February 25 For the first time the England based US Eighth Air Force and the Italy based US Fifteenth Air Force bomb same target – Regensburg, Germany in “Big Week” operations
In the US rationing restricions are relaxed March 1 Toothpaste buyers no longer have to turn in old tubes to buy new (required since 4 April 1942 due to tin shortage)
Australian troops capture Bogodjim, New Guinea March 14
March 17 New Zealand troops take the train station in the western part of Cassino, Italy and assault German strongholds in hotels
March 24 “The Great Escape” takes place — 76 Allied airmen escape from German POW camp Stalag Luft III near Sagan, 50 are recaptured and murdered, 3 escape to Allied or neutral territory


Ardeatine Caves Massacre — Nazis troops kill 335 Italian civilians in reprisal for partisan bombing the previous day

The Japanese 60th Regiment launches a night attack on Sangshak, India but it fails March 26
Japanese troops besieg Imphal, India March 30
Japanese troops capture Nippon Hill near Imphal, India April 1
The US Tenth Army lands on the southwest coast of Okinawa and begins the 12 week battle to take the island April 2
April 4 The Allies conduct the first reconnaissance mission over Auschwitz
April 5 Soviet troops capture Dorohoi, Romania
Japanese besiege 3500 British & Indian troops in Kohima, India April 6
Chinese troops launch offensive across border into Burma April 14
Japanese troops capture Crete West hill near Imphal, India


US Navy Task Force 58, with 12 aircraft carriers, begins bombing and bombardment of Hollandia, Wakde, Sawar, and Sarmi areas of New Guinea in preparation for the tomorrow’s landings

April 21
US forces secure Aitape, New Guinea, and opens Tadji Airstrip at Aitape April 24
May 1 The US Eighth Air Force flies 1st major pre-invasion mission to rail centers in the Pas de Calais and Normandy areas in preparation for D-day
May 4 Exercise Fabius taking place with Allied troops who will land on Sword, Juno, Gold, and Omaha Beaches on D-day landing on English beaches in the largest amphibious training exercise ever
May 7 The US Eighth Air Force launches over 1000 bombers in missions to Berlin, Münster, and Osnabrück, Germany
May 8 The US Congress extends Lend-Lease to June 1945
May 11 In Italy, the Germans release Jews of Turkish, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish, Finnish, and Swiss citizenship under pressure from these neutral governments


Allies officially begin preinvasion bombing of German airfields in France to drive the Luftwaffe away from invasion beaches

May 13 In drive for Rome, French troops break through Gustav Line into Aurunci Hills
May 14 The US II Corps breaks thru the German Gustav Line, opening the route to Rome
May 15 The Nazis begin the deportation of Hungary’s 440,000 Jews to Auschwitz


A conference is held in London for the top commanders for D-day, with King George VI and Winston Churchill in attendance

Chinese troops and Merrill’s Marauders (US guerillas) take Myitkyina airfield, the only hard-surfaced field in northern Burma. The US 879th Engineer Aviation Battalion arrives at there by gliders and opens the airstrip that night. May 17 German troops evacuate Cassino, Italy


The Allied Expeditionary Air Force approves invasion stripes for Allied aircraft for D-day

US forces secure Manus. The Pacific Admiralty Islands are now in Allied hands. May 18 Polish troops take Monte Cassino and the abbey; the British take the town of Cassino
US troops secure Wakde Island off New Guinea May 20 The Polish resistance captures an intact German V-2 rocket. It will eventually ship the parts to England in July
May 23 The Polish II Corps and Canadian 1st Infantry Division attack Piedimonte, Italy
May 24 The US II Corps takes Terracina in Italy unopposed, opening Highway 7 to Anzio
May 25 German paratroopers raid the hideout of Yugoslavian partisan leader Tito, almost capturing him—and visitor Randolph Churchill, son of Winston Churchill


Outgoing mail from US soldiers in Britain is impounded until after D-day as a security precaution


The US VI Corps takes Cisterna, Italy


The US VI Corps from Anzio joins the US II Corps from the Gustav Line, near Littoria, Italy

The US 41st Infantry Division lands on Biak Island in Geelvink Bay of New Guinea and faces heavy resistance May 27
The first tank battle is fought in the Southwest Pacific, on Biak Island off New Guinea. The US defeats Japanese forces. [1] May 29
May 31 At 0700, first “Corncob” blockships that will be sunk for “Gooseberry” breakwaters depart Britain, the first ships to sail for D-day [1]
June 2 The US Fifteenth Air Force flies the first shuttle mission to Russia: 130 B-17s & 70 P-51s from Italy bomb Debreczen, Hungary then fly to Poltava [1]
The last major air combat by the Royal Australian Air Force in WWII as Australian fighters shoot down 9 Japanese planes off New Guinea [1] June 3 The Germans declare Rome an open city and evacuate as the Allies advance [1]


Loading of all troops for D-day is complete; Force U (bound for Utah Beach) departs ports in Devon for Normandy [1]

June 4 The 36th Infantry Division was the first Allied troops to enter Rome


The US 5th Army captures Cervaro, Italy

June 6 D-Day, the Allied invasion of Normandy
June 8 British and US forces link near Port-en-Bessin in Normandy [1]


On the Adriatic coast of Italy, the British advance after finding the Germans have retreated [1]


The US 2nd Ranger Battalion at Pointe du Hoc is relieved by forces from Omaha Beach, having held the point since climbing the cliffs on D-day. [1]


RAF first uses the 12,000-lb “Tallboy” bomb, destroying a train tunnel in Saumur, France on only north-south rail line in the Loire Valley, impeding German reinforcement of Normandy [1]

June 10 Oradour-Sur-Glane – A French village utterly destroyed and over 600 men, women, and children massacred by SS troops
June 12 The French town of Carentan is liberated by the 101st Airborne [4]
June 13 The first Fieseler Fi 103 (the infamous V1) is fired on London [13]
The US Marine 2nd and 4th Divisions land on Saipan in the Mariana Islands [1] June 15
June 17 In Normandy, the US First Army cuts off the Cotentin Peninsula, trapping Germans in Cherbourg [1]


Free French troops land on Elba off the coast of Italy [1]


Iceland becomes an independent republic with Sveinn Björnsson as the first president [1]

June 19 Free French secure Elba [1]


A great storm hits Normandy wrecking the Allied Mulberry harbor A and damaging Mulberry harbor B. Hundreds of vessels are grounded, hampering the build-up after D-Day. [1]

Battle of the Philippine Sea. The aerial part of the battle was nicknamed the Great Marianas Turkey Shoot resulting in the loss of over 450 aircraft by the Japanese. This battle resulted in sinking 3 Japanese aircraft carriers, eliminating the Imperial Japanese Navy’s ability to conduct large-scale carrier actions. [1] June 19-20
June 20 Soviets forces take Viipuri, Finland, opening the Gulf of Finland to Soviet ships [1]


The US First Army besieges Cherbourg, France [1]

June 29 In the Nazi campaign against Italian partisans, Germans execute all 73 men in San Pancrazio, Tuscany [1]


Soviets take Bobruysk in Byelorussia, capturing 70,000 troops of German Army Group Center [1]

June 30 On D-Plus 23 the German-garrison in the port city of Cherbourg surrendersproviding the Allies a deep-water harbour for moving men and materiel into France [4]
July 4 The millionth Allied soldier lands in Normandy, less than one month after D-day [1]


US Navy Task Force 58 bombards and bombs Iwo Jima, Haha Jima, and Chichi Jima, forcing the Japanese air force to leave the islands [1]

July 5 The US Fifteenth Air Force bombs German submarine pens at Toulon, France, sinking two of the ten U-boats remaining in the Mediterranean and damaging five. [1]


In the US, auto inner tubes are removed from rationing, but tires are still rationed [1]

July 8 The US Army commands all Post Exchanges, theaters, and transportation to be open to all races [1]


The British launch 1750 barrage balloons south of London to combat German V-1 buzz bombs [1]


In Normandy, the British & Canadians launch an assault on Caen and enter the city [1]

The US secures Saipan in the Mariana Islands [1] July 9 Hungary Prime Minister Miklós Horthy temporarily stops deportation of the Jews, an attempt to curry favor with the Allies in case of the need to negotiate for surrender [1]


The British Second Army takes the crucial city of Caen in Normandy [1]

July 11 Soviet forces capture the surrounded German Fourth Army near Minsk in Byelorussia and take 37,000 POWs [1]
July 13 Red Army units capture Vilna, Lithuania [2]
July 19 The US takes the crucial port of Leghorn (Livorno), Italy with little opposition, but Germans have destroyed the harbor [1]
The US Marines land on Tinian in the Marianas [1,2] July 24 The Soviets liberate the first Nazi concentration camp, at Majdenek near Lublin [1,2]
July 25 Operation Cobra: US First Army begins breakout from Normandy [1]
July 27 In Operation Cobra in Normandy, the US First Army breaks through German defenses south of Saint-Lô [1]


First operational use of RAF Gloster Meteor jet fighters, which will down 14 V-1 buzz bombs by the end of the war [1]

Japanese troops attack Kokoda airfield in Australian Papua [2] July 29 On Guam, US Marines clear Orote Peninsula and take Orote Airfield [1]
July 31 The Soviet Army reaches the East Prussian border [1]


The Germans destroy all bridges in Florence, Italy, except the historic Ponte Vecchio, which can only handle foot traffic [1]


The British VIII Corps launches Operation Bluecoat towards Vire River in Normandy, France [2]

The US secures Tinian in the Mariana Islands [1] August 1 The US Third Army under Gen. George Patton enters action in France, breaking out of Normandy and entering Brittany [1]


The Warsaw uprising begins: Polish Home Army rises up against the Germans as the Soviets approach [1]

August 2 Neutral Turkey breaks diplomatic relations with Germany [1]


The US Ninth Air Force stops bombing bridges over Loire and Seine Rivers in France in order to speed Allied advance [1]

US and Chinese forces take crucial town of Myitkyina, Burma [1] August 3
August 7 In Normandy, the Canadian forces launch a drive toward Falaise [1]


Cherbourg Harbor opens for Allied traffic in France [1]


At Harvard University, IBM reveals the Harvard Mark I, the first program-controlled computer (has 50 ft panel, adds in 1/3 second) [1]


In Normandy, the Germans open a counteroffensive in the US First Army area, retaking Mortain but falling short of goal of reaching Avranches [1]

The Japanese take Hengyang in their drive south across China, taking the US Fourteenth Air Force air base at Hengyang [1] August 8 Eight German officers are hanged in Berlin for their role in the July 20 Hitler assassination plot; by 3 Feb 1945, 4980 will be executed [1]
The US secures Guam, although one Japanese soldier won’t surrender until 1972 [1] August 10 In Paris, rail workers go on strike, stranding German soldiers trying to evacuate [1]
August 11 The Germans scuttle ships at Nantes, France as Allies approach [1]


The US Third Army crosses the Loire River in France [1]

New songs in Top Ten [1] August 12 “I’ll Walk Alone,” “Is You Is or Is You Ain’t My Baby?” [1]
<hr
The first PLUTO (Pipeline under the Ocean) becomes operational, taking fuel from Isle of Wight, England to Cherbourg, France [1]
August 13 British and Indian troops cross into northern Florence via historic Ponte Vecchio, securing the city with help of the Italians [1]
The US War Production Board allows the production of . . . [1] August 14 . . . some civilian goods to resume in preparation for the November elections [1]


Canadian, Polish, and US troops form the Falaise pocket in France, partially surrounding Germans [1]

August 15 Operation Dragoon, the Allied invasion of southern France, is launched [2]
Organized Japanese resistance ends on the Burma-India border [1] August 16 The US Eighth Air Force suffers 1st attack by Luftwaffe jet fighters (Messerschmitt Me 163s), has 1st loss to a jet, and destroys a German jet for 1st time [1]
August 17 The Germans begin retreating from southern France. They also begin retreating from the Falaise pocket in Normandy while the Canadians take Falaise [1]


The US Third Army takes St. Malo, Chartres, and Orléans in France. [1]


The Vichy French government flees for Germany; Marshal Philippe Pétain and his staff are interned by Hitler, while Prime Minister Pierre Laval’s government will resign [1]

August 18 The German Seventh Army retreats across the Orne River in France [2]


In southern France, US Task Force Butler under Brig. Gen. Frederic Butler strikes northwest, taking advantage of weak German resistance to make a rapid drive. [1]


Soviet forces capture Sandomierz, Poland [2]

August 19 The French Resistance rises up against Nazi troops occupying Paris. Within five days the Allied army arrives to liberate the city. They seize Hôtel de Ville (city hall). [1,4]


Canadian troops link with the US Third Army at Chambois, France closing the Falaise Gap; 50,000 German prisoners will be taken, but 20-30,000 escape [1]

August 21 The Dumbarton Oaks Conference begins in Washington, DC for Allies to discuss the establishment of the United Nations [1]


French civilians launch an insurrection in Marseille against the Germans [1]


The US Third Army reaches Reims and Troyes southeast of Paris, France [2]

August 26 Gen. Charles de Gaulle leads a parade down the Champs Élysées; snipers shoot at him there and later inside Notre Dame Cathedral; snipers also shoot at celebrating Parisians at Place de la Concorde. [1]
August 27 The final group of Chindits, British commandos operating behind Japanese lines in Burma, are evacuated to India [1]
September 9 Canadian forces overrun German rocket bases on the Belgian coast [1]


The US First Army enters the Netherlands near Maastricht [1]


Near Brest, France, four men of the US 2nd Ranger Battalion, led by Lt. Robert Edlin, with lots of bluffing and bravado, take Batterie Graf Spee without firing a shot—and take 814 POWs [1]

September 11 The US First Army reaches the Siegfried Line at the German border and crosses into Germany north of Trier [1]


At Saulieu, France, official contact is made between Overlord forces (Normandy 6/6/44) and Dragoon forces (southern France 8/15/44); Allied front now runs from English Channel to Mediterranean [1]

September 12 Romania signs an armistice with the Allies and agrees to fight Germany [1]


The first German city falls to the Allies as the US First Army takes Roetgen [1]


In Normandy, the Canadians take the crucial port of Le Havre, but due to damage, the port won’t open for four weeks [1]


The Octagon Conference begins in Québec between US, UK, and Canada [1]


German and Hungarian troops launch an offensive towards Arad and Timisoara [2]

September 13 In Belgium, Canadian forces cross both the Leopold Canal and the Canal de Derivation, while British forces cross the Meuse-Escaut Canal [1]
September 13 Operation Dragoon, the Allied campaign in southern France, concludes: 131,000 German POWs have been taken, 40% of Army Group G [1]
September 16 German forces south of Loire surrender. The Russians enter Sofia. Second Quebec conference ends. [11]


The Soviets launch assault toward Gulf of Riga on the Baltic [1,11]

September 17 Operation Market Garden begins in the Netherlands. The first of 41,000 Allied paratroopers are dropped into the Netherlands as part of the ill-fated Operation Market Garden. [4]
September 18 British ground troops link with the US 101st Airborne Division in Eindhoven, Holland [1]


The US Ninth Army takes the crucial port of Brest, France [1]

September 19 The US Ninth Army clears the Brittany region of France [1]


Germans begin arresting Danish policemen for refusing to protect enterprises from the Danish resistance; 81-90 will die in concentration camps [1]


In Operation Market Garden, British ground troops link with US 82nd Airborne Division at Grave, the Netherlands [1]

September 20 In Operation Market Garden, British ground troops and US 82nd Airborne take Nijmegen, the Netherlands [1]
US Navy Task Force 38 carrier aircraft strike Manila Harbor in the Philippines, sinking 28 Japanese ships [1] September 21 In Operation Market Garden, Germans retake the bridge in Arnhem from British paratroopers [1]
In the Pacific, the US 81st Infantry Division lands on Ulithi Atoll unopposed, to be used as a supply base [1] September 22 Soviet troops commence a crossing of the River Danube near Turnu Severin, Romania [2]
September 23 Soviet troops commence a crossing of the River Danube near Turnu Severin, Romania [2]
September 25 Free French troops launch assault towards Belfort Gap in France [1]


Operation Market Garden ends as British troops withdraw from Arnhem, Holland; two-thirds of the British paratroopers have been killed or captured [1]


Soviet forces reach the Gulf of Riga on the Baltic [1,2]


The Soviets enter Hungary near Arad [1]

September27 The British 8th Army drives the German from their positions along the Uso River north of Rimini, Italy [2]
September26 A C-47 carrying flight nurse Reba Whittle crash-lands behind enemy lines in Germany; she becomes the only female US POW in the European Theater in WWII. She will treat patients in German POW camp hospitals and will be repatriated to the US in February 1945 [1]
September28 Greek government-in-exile and competing resistance groups agree to place forces under Allied command [1]


Soviet 57th Army enters Yugoslavia [1]

September 29 In France, the Canadians allow an armistice in Calais to let civilians evacuate [1]
In the Pacific, the US declares Peleliu secure, but resistance remains [1] September 30 The Warsaw Uprising ends in Polish surrender. In the occupied areas of Warsaw, German soldiers set all buildings on fire to decrease the chances of the AK (Home Army) using them in the future. [12]


Canadian troops take Calais, France [1]


The Allies capture the last German cross-Channel guns; residents of heavily shelled Dover, England celebrate [1]

October 2 The “Battle of the Scheldt” begins. Canadian, British and Polish forces attack into the Netherlands to open up the shipping route to Antwerp so that its port could be used to supply the Allies.
October 3 The Germans evacuate Athens, Greece [1]
The US Sixth Army secures Morotai in the Netherlands East Indies [1] October 4 British paratroopers land at Patras, Greece, and on Crete and Aegean islands [1]
October 5 Germany begins conscription of sixteen-year-old boys [1]


French women are granted the right to vote for the first time ever [1]


Canadian troops cross Belgian-Dutch border north of Antwerp [1]


Vatican galleries reopened after the liberation of Rome [14]

October 6 Allied troops capture Ossendrecht, the Netherlands [2]


The US First Army enters the Hürtgen Forest in Germany [1]

October 9 The fourth Moscow Conference opens between Churchill and Stalin [1]
US Navy Task Force 38 (17 aircraft carriers) strikes Okinawa, sinking 34 vessels & destroying 75 Japanese planes [1] October 10 British and Greek troops secure Corinth and German Army Group E begins a retreat from Greece [1]
October 12 In Italy, Buffalo Soldiers of US 92nd Infantry Division breach Gothic Line, the only black US Army unit to see combat in Europe [1]
The US secures Palau Islands in the Pacific [1] October 13 The Soviets take the important naval base of Riga, Latvia, trapping Germans in the Courland Peninsula [1]


The port of Le Havre, France opens for Allied ships, improving the supply situation [1]

October 14 No.6 RCAF Group, Bomber Command, within a period of sixteen hours, flies a total of 501 Lancaster and Halifax bombers against targets in Duisburg, Germany


Greek Resistance and British troops secure Athens, Greece [1]


German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, a suspect in the July 20 Hitler assassination plot, commits suicide to protect his family [1]

October 15 Hungarian regent Adm. Miklós Horthy is deposed by German commandos and replaced with fascist leader Ferenc Szálasi the next day [1]
The U.S. Navy announced a decision October 18 The Soviets enter Czechoslovakia through the Carpathian passes, but pause to let Germans crush Slovakian mountain uprising [1]


Hitler activates Volkssturm, a militia of all able-bodied males 13-60 years old [1]

Lt. Gen. Joseph Stilwell is removed from command of the China-Burma-India Theater and recalled to US [1]n October 19 to integrate its female reserve program
Douglas MacArthur lands at Leyte after being driven out of the Philippines two-and-a-half years earlier. “I have returned!” he declares. October 20
The Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest naval battle of WWII and perhaps the largest in history. The US Navy defeats the Japanese fleet giving the Allies virtual control of the Pacific October 23-26
October 26 Canadian troops make amphibious landing at Beveland in crucial Scheldt Estuary in the Netherlands [1]
October 28 Bulgaria, which had fought with Germany, signs armistice with the Allies [1]
October 30 In the Vosges mountains in France, the US 442nd Infantry Regiment (Japanese-Americans) rescues the Lost Battalion with heavy losses (184 killed) [1]
November 1 Allied forces land at Uncle Beach at Vlissingen as part of Operation Infatuate. This was part of the “Battle of the Scheldt”.
November 2 The liberation of Belgium is complete. Canadians have taken Zeebrugge [1]


Marshal Tito becomes Prime Minister of Yugoslavia, serving in coalition government with government-in-exile prime minister Ivan Šubašić [1]


The US First Army begins drive on Schmidt, Germany through the Hürtgen Forest [1]


All able-bodied German males ages 13-60 are ordered to join the Volkssturm militia under penalty of court-martial [1]

November 4 The Liberation of Greece is complete as the final German troops evacuate [1]
US B-29s bomb Japanese-occupied Singapore for the first time [1] November 5 British troops captured Ravenna, Italy, cutting the rail line to Bologna
The British launch an offensive in western Burma toward Akyab [1] November 8 The “Battle of the Scheldt”ends


Canadians secure Walcheren and the Scheldt Estuary to protect port of Antwerp, Belgium [1]


Allied troops captured Veere and Koudekerke in the Netherlands


The US Third Army begins its offensive against the Siegfried line toward Metz, France [1]


The 761st Tank Battalion, the first African-American tank unit, enters combat with US Third Army [1]

November 12 British Lancaster bombers sink German battleship Tirpitz in Tromsø Fjord, Norway; 902 killed [1]
November 13 In the Vosges Mountains in France, US Seventh Army launches offensive on German Siegfried Line [1]
American and Chinese troops attack Bhamo, Burma November 14 The French First Army opens assault towards Belfort Gap in France [1]
November 16 The US First and Ninth Armies launch offensive to clear the Roer Plain in Germany [1]
November 18 The US Third Army enters Metz, France [1]
Japan conducts the first successful test of a rocket-powered Ohka aircraft


The British Fourteenth Army opens drive in Burma and crosses the Chindwin River at Sittaung [1]

November 19
Chinese troops capture Mangshih, Yunnan Province, China November 20
November 21 The US Seventh and French First Armies enter Alsatian plain in France [1]
The 15,000th P-40 is completed November 22 at Buffalo, New York, United States


The US Third Army takes the crucial town of Metz, France [1]

November 23 The T-44 medium tank officially enters Soviet Army service [2]


The French First Army takes Strasbourg, France [1]


Chinese-American WASP Hazel Lee is injured in a landing accident at Great Falls, MT; she dies on Nov. 25, the last of 38 WASPs to die on duty. [1]

US B-29 bombers based in the Marianas Islands attack Tokyo for the first time [2]


Japanese capture Nanning, completing a land corridor between occupied China and Indochina [1]

November 24 In Terrace BC, Canadian conscripts (many are French-Canadian) mutiny when they hear they might be sent overseas, largest mutiny in Canadian history; put down by 11/29; news of mutiny is censored. [1]


In a controversial decision, Gen. Dwight Eisenhower orders the 6th Army Group not to cross the Rhine but to drive north and assist Patton’s Third Army [1]

November 25 A German V-2 rocket hits Woolworth department store in London, killing 168 [1]


As Soviets advance, Nazis demolish crematoria and gas chambers at Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp [1]

November 26 US troops captured Monte Belvedere and Monte Castello, Italy [2]
Cordell Hull resigns as US Secretary of State [1] November 27
Anglo-Indian troops capture Kalewa, Burma November 28 Albania is secured by partisans as Germans evacuate [1]


The Allies open the port of Antwerp, Belgium as the first convoy of supply ships arrives [1]

November 29 Soviet and Yugoslavian troops cross the Danube River into Hungary [2]


Brazilian troops attack Monte Castello 61 kilometers southwest of Bologna, Italy [2]


German spies William Colepaugh and Erich Gimpel are landed by U-boat U-1230 at Hancock Point, ME; both are arrested by 1/1/45 [1]

November 30 The Polish government puts Nazi commandant and guards from Majdanek concentration camp on trial [1]
Edward Stettinius becomes US Secretary of State after Cordell Hull’s resignation [1] December 1 Himmler orders the crematoriums and gas chambers of Auschwitz destroyed


Canadian forces open campaign to clear the Scheldt Estuary around the port of Antwerp, Belgium [1]

British begin offensive in Burma, with the Indian 20th Division crossing the Chindwin River at Kalewa. [1] December 3 Allied troops capture Blerick, the Netherlands [2]


British Eighth Army opens drive for Bologna, Italy [1]


Civil war breaks out in Greece between communists and royalists [1]

December 4 Italian partisans liberate Ravenna in first major partisan attack in Italy [1]


The US Third Army crosses the Saar River at Saarlautern, Germany [1]

The US launches its final offensive on Leyte in the Philippines, driving into the Ormoc Valley [1] December 5
December 6 The German He 162 jet fighter made its first flight
December 7 Nazi women’s leader Gertrud Scholtz-Klink asks all German women over 18 to volunteer to serve in the armed services to release men to the front [1]
Japanese troops capture Tushan, Jiangsu Province, China


The US Navy and US Army Air Force begin 72-day pre-invasion bombardment of Iwo Jima [1]

December 8
December 9 Russian troops reach the Danube River north of Budapest, Hungary


The Bulgarian and Yugoslavian armies drive the last German forces from Serbia and Macedonia [1]


British troops arrive in Athens, Greece to put down the communist uprising [1]

On Leyte in the Philippines, the US Sixth Army takes Ormoc, the main supply base [1] December 10
Ormoc Bay is completely secured by the US in the Philippines. More importantly, Ormoc yielded vast stockpiles of munitions from the Japanese Thirty-fifth Army [15] December 11
Allied troops attack the Arakan region of Burma December 12
December 17 72 captured American soldiers are murdered in Malmedy by an SS unit. “Avenge Malmedy” became a battle cry for American forces and four days later 21 German soldiers attempting to surrender were killed in an act of revenge [18]
December 19 In the Battle of the Bulge, the US 101st Airborne Division arrives in Bastogne, Belgium to protect the crucial crossroads. Bastogne is almost fully surrounded [1, 15]
December 20 Dwight Eisenhower, Supreme Allied Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force in Europe, is appointed 5-star general of the army [1]


US terminates WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots) program—returning combat airmen will perform ferrying services; 1037 women served, with 38 fatalities. [1]

The US Sixth Army secures Ormoc Valley on Leyte [1] December 21 In the Battle of the Bulge, the Germans surround US troops in Bastogne, Belgium and take the crossroads at St. Vith [1]


US forces capture Stavelot, Belgium [2]

Indian 2nd and 20th Divisions reach Pyingaing, Burma [2] December 23 Adolf Eichmann flees Budapest, Hungary before dawn [2]


At Papago Park camp, AZ, 25 German POWs escape, ecstatic about successes in Battle of the Bulge, but plan to float down a river to Mexico goes awry due to dry riverbed; all recaptured by 1/28/45 [1]


US C-47 cargo planes drop supplies, including medical supplies, into surrounded Bastogne, Belgium [1]

December 27 Soviets encircle Budapest, Hungary, beginning 102-day siege [1]
December 31 Hitler’s generals carry out Germany’s last major offensive in the West. Operation Nordwind sees Wehrmacht and SS troops strike at U.S. and French forces in Alsace and Lorraine. The push fails to forestall the Third Reich’s inevitable collapse. [4]


US troops execute 3 Germans dressed in American uniforms in the Ardennes during the Battle of the Bulge [15]

1945
January 2 An American Sikorsky helicopter is used in naval convoy escort for the first time [1]
The first contingent of WAVES arrive in Hawaii; 4000 will serve there [1] January 6
Off Manila Bay, US destroyers Charles Ausburne, Braine, Russell, and Shaw sink the Japanese destroyer Hinoki in the last surface naval engagement of the Pacific war [1] January 7 The German Navy begins evacuating troops trapped by the Soviet advance along the Baltic in Lithuania [1]
The Japanese execute Filipino resistance leader Col. Pastor Martelino [1]


In Placer County, CA, the home of a recently returned Japanese-American family is attacked (shed burned and shots fired), the first of 30 similar incidents on the West Coast [1]

January 8 The Germans demolish floodgates on the Ruhr River, flooding the area west of Cologne [1]
The Battle of Luzon begins with 175K troops from the 6th Army landing along the 20-mile beachhead of Lingayen Gulf in the Philippines [15]


The US Sixth Army lands at Lingayen Gulf on Luzon in the Philippines; beachhead is established as Japanese have withdrawn inland [1]

January 9
On Luzon, Filipino guerrillas take Aguilar and Santa Barbara, linking with US troops [1]


Japanese submarines begin operation Kongo, employing suicide torpedoes (kaiten) at Ulithi Atoll, damaging 2 American ships [1]

January 11
In Burma, the Indian 19th Division attempts to cross the Irrawaddy River at Thabaikkyin but withdraws under fierce Japanese bayonet attack [1] January 14 The US 357th Fighter Group downs 56.5 aircraft over Germany, the highest single day total for any US Army Air Force fighter group in WWII. [1]


The Soviet 1st Ukrainian Front crosses the Nida River in Poland [2]

The Japanese launch a drive towards the isolated US Fourteenth Air Force bases in eastern China and toward the Hengyang-Canton railroad [1] January 15 In the US, a nationwide dim-out is ordered to conserve fuel [1]
January 16
January 17 The Soviets take Warsaw [1]


Nazis lead 66,000 prisoners from Auschwitz on a death march to Germany [1]


Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, who saved tens of thousands of Jews, is detained by the Soviets in Budapest, Hungary and disappears [1]

January 18
January 19
January 20 Hungary signs surrender to the Allies in Moscow [1]


President Franklin D. Roosevelt is inaugurated for his fourth term [1]

Kamikazes hit the US Third Fleet off Luzon and damage the carrier USS Ticonderoga (143 killed), but TF 38 aircraft sink 15 Japanese ships and destroy 104 aircraft [1] January 21
The Indian 20th Division takes Monywa in Burma, the last Japanese port on the Chindwin River [1] January 22
In the shallow harbor of Nanguan Island, China, sub USS Barb sinks Japanese freighter Taikyu Maru; Cdr. Eugene Fluckey will receive the Medal of Honor; Barb will receive Presidential Unit Citation [1]


Anglo-Indian troops capture Myinmu, Burma [2]

January 23 The US Army captured St. Vith, the last German stronghold in the Ardennes “bulge.” [1, 15]


The Nazis execute German resistance leaders Count Helmuth von Moltke (leader of Kreisau Circle resistance group) and Erwin Planck (son of physicist Max Planck) [1]

January 24 German troops begin evacuating from Slovakia as Soviets advance [1]


At Mauthausen, Nazis execute 9 US OSS agents, 4 British SOE agents & an Associated Press reporter, all arrested with Slovakian partisans on mission to evacuate downed airmen. Associated Press reporter Joseph Morton was the only Allied war correspondent executed by the Axis in WWII [1]

Anglo-Indian and Japanese troops clash at Kabwet, Burma [2] January 25
January 26 Wounded Audie Murphy single-handedly repels tank and infantry attacks in France earning him the Congressional Medal of Honor
US Twentieth Bomber Command (B-29s) evacuates from Chengtu, China to Kharagpur, India as Japanese advance in China [1] January 27 Over 7,000 prisoners of the German Nazi Auschwitz and Birkenau camps, including ca. 700 children, were liberated by the soldiers of the 322nd Rifle Division of the Soviet army. 1,689 days of murder, humiliation, suffering, and pain were over. Today we all remember. [1, 6, 17, 24, 25]


The Siege of Leningrad finally ends after a staggering 872 days [24]

January 28
The US Eighth Army lands in Subic Bay on Luzon and takes the San Marcelino airfields [1]


At Guadalcanal, the US Coast Guard attack cargo ship Serpens explodes while depth charges are being loaded; 196 crewmen & 57 Army stevedores killed, the greatest loss on a Coast Guard ship in WWII [1]

January 29
Army Rangers, Alamo Scouts & Filipino guerrillas rescue 552 Allied prisoners from the Japanese POW camp at Cabanatuan [4] January 30
January 31 U.S. Army private named Eddie Slovik is shot at Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines, France for desertion [4]


The British clear the last German bridgehead across the Maas [11]

February 1 The US First Army captures Remscheid in Germany [2]
February 2 French troops capture Colmar, France [2]
US forces engage Japanese troops in Manila, Philippines February 3 The Yalta Conference, with Winston Churchill (UK), Franklin D. Roosevelt (USA) and Joseph Stalin (USSR), begins
The first Allied truck convoy over the reopened Burma Road arrives in Kunming, China [1] February 4 The Allies liberate Belgium [1]


The Yalta Conference begins—Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin plan the division of postwar Europe [1]

February 5 The US Seventh and French Armies link, splitting the Colmar pocket in France [1]


The RAF Balloon Command is disbanded as the air raid threat lessens [1]

February 8 The Canadian First Army opens a drive for the Rhine from Nijmegen in the Netherlands, often in flooded conditions [1]


The Norwegian resistance (Milorg) kills Maj. Gen. Karl Marthinson, head of Norwegian state police [1]

The British secure Ramree Island, Burma [1] February 9 In rare sub vs. sub combat and the only documented case in naval history where both were submerged, British submarine HMS Venturer sinks German U-boat U-864 off Bergen, Norway. [1]


The US Seventh & French First Armies clear the Colmar Pocket and Alsatian Plain and drive the Germans over the Rhine south of Strasbourg, France [1]

A US P-51 deliberately damages a US C-47 to prevent the cargo plane from mistakenly landing at a Japanese airfield in the Philippines; the C-47 ditches at sea and all aboard rescued next day [1] February 10 The Soviet submarine S-13 sinks the German transport Steuben, killing 3800 military personnel & civilians fleeing East Prussia. S-13 also sank Wilhelm Gustloff, making sub commander Alexander Marinesko the most lethal in history and the most successful Soviet commander in tonnage. [1]
At the Yalta Conference, Stalin pledges to declare war on Japan within 3 months of the German surrender [1] February 11 The Yalta Agreement is signed by Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin [2]
B-29 Superfortresses of the US XXI Bomber Command begin pre-invasion bombing of Iwo Jima [1] February 12
February 13 The RAF and US Air Force planes begin to drop around 2,400 tons of explosives and 1,500 tons of incendiary bombs on the German city of Dresden


German & Hungarian forces surrendered to the Allies in Budapest. 38,000 civilians died during the siege & after in labor camps. Budapest was in ruins with about 80% of buildings destroyed. [15]

February 14 British and Canadian troops reach the Rhine River northwest of Duisberg, Germany


Starting late on Feb. 13, 805 RAF bombers & 311 US Eighth Air Force B-17s bomb Dresden, Germany, starting firestorm that kills at least 37,000. [1]

As the Japanese advance, the US Fourteenth Air Force evacuates the last of its eastern China airfields, it can no longer raid the South China Sea [1]


The US Sixth Army lands at Mariveles on tip of the Bataan peninsula on Luzon, and takes Mariveles and its airfield [1]

February 15 The first African-American members of the Women’s Army Corps arrive in the UK [1]
US paratroopers attack Corregidor, Philippines [2] February 16
For the second day in a row, carriers of US Fifth Fleet strike Tokyo, while Fifth Fleet warships bombard Iwo Jima [1] February 17
February 18 In Germany, the US Third Army crosses the Siegfried Line north of Echternach [1]
February 19
February 20
February 21
February 22 Operation Clarion is launched: 6000 aircraft of the RAF and US Eighth, Ninth, and Fifteenth Air Forces aim to destroy German communications and isolate the industrial Ruhr Valley [1]


The US Fifth Army secures the Upper Reno Valley in Italy [1]

The US Marines Michael Strank, Harlon Block, Franklin Sousley, Rene Gagnon, Ira Hayes, and Harold Schultz raise the flag on Mt. Suribachi on Iwo Jima; immortalized by Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal [1]


Troops of the US 11th Airborne liberate 2147 POWs at Los Baños, Luzon [1]

February 23 In Arctic convoy RA-64, the US freighter Henry Bacon shoots down 3 Luftwaffe Ju 88 bombers, a Liberty ship record, but is sunk in turn—the last Allied ship lost to German aircraft in the war [1]
February 24 Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Maher Pasha declares war on the Axis and is immediately assassinated in the parliament chamber [1]


Hitler makes his last speech in the Chancellery in Berlin [1]

US B-29 bombers and Fifth Fleet carrier aircraft strike Tokyo in a devastating raid [1] February 25 Turkey breaks neutrality and declares war on Germany and Japan [1]


US M26 Pershing tanks are first used in combat in Europe [1]

The US Sixth Army begins assault on last three Japanese strongholds in Manila [1]


American troops capture Corregidor, Philippine Islands [2]


The Indian 2nd Division completes the crossing of the Irrawady River at Ngazumi, Burma [2]

February 26 The US Ninth Army reaches the Rhine south of Düsseldorf, Germany [1]
General Douglas MacArthur officially turns over the government of the Philippines to President Sergio Osmeña [1]


The US Sixth Army secures Corregidor in the Philippines [1]

February 27 Lebanon joins many other nations in last-minute declarations of war on Germany and Japan—all who join the Allies before March 1 will be invited to the upcoming United Nations conference [1]
February 28
The US Sixth Army secures Manila after furious house-to-house fighting; 100,000 civilians have been killed by the Japanese [1] March 3 The US Ninth Army and Canadian troops link between the Maas and Rhine rivers [1]
The British Fourteenth Army takes Meiktila, Burma [1]


A B-29 Superfortress lands at Iwo Jima, the first of 2400 B-29s to use the airfields for emergency landings [1]

March 4
All Japanese pockets of resistance at Meiktila, Burma have been eliminated March 5 The German Army begins conscripting fifteen-year-old boys [1]


Fortress Graudenz is captured by the Soviet 2nd Byelorussian Front [2]

March 7 The US 9th Armored Division unexpectedly captures Ludendorff Bridge over the Rhine at Remagen [14]
March 11 The US Third Army captures Kochem, Germany
US B-29 bombers attack Kobe, Japan, causing 15,000 casualties March 16
B-29 bombers destroy 7 square kilometers of Kobe, Japan, killing 8,841 March 17
First flight of the Douglas A-1 Skyraider March 18 American single-seat attack aircraft


US Third Army captures Boppard, Germany

Indian 19th Infantry Division captures Mandalay, Burma March 20 US Third Army reaches Mainz, Germany
March 22 Soviet forces capture Braunsberg in East Prussia, Germany
March 27 The US Third Army captures Aschaffenburg, Germany


The Soviet Army enters Danzig encountering heavy resistance

March 28 The Soviet 1st Byelorussian Front captures Gotenhafen and Danzig


The US 1st Army captures Marburg, Germany

March 29 Soviet units capture the Komorn oil fields in Hungary
The Indian 19th Division captures Kyaukse south of Mandalay, Burma March 30 Soviet troops enter into Danzig
March 31 Soviet troops capture Ratibor and Katscher, Germany


The US Third Army reaches Siegen, Germany

US invades Okinawa April 1
April 2 Soviet troops capture Wiener Neustadt
April 5 French First Army captures Karlsruhe, Germany
The Japanese battleship Yamato, the largest battleship ever constructed, is sunk by American aircraft April 7
April 8 The US Seventh Army captures Pforzheim in southwestern Germany
US troops capture Jolo and Lamon Bay in the Philippines April 10
April 11 The US Third Army captures Weimar, Germany
April 13 The British 78th Infantry Division secures a bridgehead at Bastia in northern Italy
April 15 British troops liberate Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp in Germany
US Army troops land on Ie Shima off Okinawa, Japan April 16 US First Army captures Solingen and Wuppertal, Germany
April 17 Brazilian troops capture Montese, Italy
April 21 French First Army captures Stuttgart, Germany
April 27 Italian partisans capture Benito Mussolini
April 30 Hitler commits suicide
May 2 German forces in Italy and Austria surrender
May 4 Montgomery accepts the unconditional surrender of the German forces in North-West Europe at Lüneburg Heath
May 7 In the early hours of 7 May 1945 Germany surrenders unconditionally to the Allies
The US 10th Army captures Shuri Castle at Okinawa, Japan [2] May 29
British bombers destroy the “Bridge Over the River Kwai.” The bridge had been built by thousands of British and Allied prisoners of war. [7] June 24
Gadget, the first Atomic Bomb–detonated in the Trinity nuclear test as part of the Manhattan Project July 16
This calls for the unconditional surrender of Japan July 26 The Potsdam Declaration is issued by Allied leaders
The US drops the Atomic bomb on Hiroshima August 6
Russia declares war on Japan August 8
The US drops the Atomic bomb on Nagasaki August 9
Japan announces surrender August 14
Japan signs surrender documents September 2
World War II ends in Singapore after the Japanese army surrenders to the Allies September 12
September 17 In Italy, the US Fifth Army breaks the German Gothic Line at Il Giogo Pass [1]
The United Nations is formed October 24 There are 23 countries
The trial against Japanese General Yamashita begins in Manila October 29
November 13 Charles de Gaulle becomes the first post-war head of the French government
November 21 All accused German war criminals at Nuremberg plead not guilty [2]
US Secretary of War Robert Patterson orders all Japanese cyclotrons to be destroyed [2] November 24
November 25 The beginning of Operation Deadlight – the RAF begins to scuttle Nazi U-Boats
The Japanese create the Ministry of Demobilization December 1
Tomoyuki Yamashita was found guilty of war crimes December 7
1946
February 11 The last of the 116 captured German U-boats scheduled to be sunk is scuttled by the Allies 100 miles off the northwest coast of Ireland
October 15 Herman Goering, head of the Luftwaffe and Gestapo, commits suicide by cyanide the night before his execution
October 16 10 high-ranking members of Nazi-Germany are executed by hanging
2004
World War II monument opens in Washington, D.C. April 29 The memorial is located on 7.4 acres on the former site of the Rainbow Pool at the National Mall between the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial.
1951
February 4 German Alfried Krupp is released from imprisonment and his fortune is restored [2]
2018
The Dutch national railway company is setting up a commission to investigate how it can pay individual reparations for its role in mass deportations of Jews by Nazi occupiers during World War II November 28
South Korea’s Supreme Court orders Japanese Mitsubishi to pay compensation for WWII slave labour November 29
December 9 The Doctors Trial begins at Nuremberg [2]

Sources:

  1. https://twitter.com/sarahsundin
  2. https://twitter.com/ww2db
  3. https://twitter.com/wartimeni
  4. https://twitter.com/MilHistNow
  5. The Darkest Year
  6. Auschwitz Memorial
  7. DDaywear
  8. Ron_Eisele
  9. ClassicWarBirds
  10. Yesterday Channel
  11. World War II History (The War Years)
  12. World War II stories from 1944
  13. RG Poulussen
  14. History Lovers Club
  15. WWII Today
  16. WWII Tweets from 1941
  17. World War II History
  18. WW2 History Hit
  19. WW2 Battlefields
  20. WorldWar2Facts
  21. Home Front Museum
  22. Tank Archives
  23. Polish Embassy UK
  24. James Holland
  25. National WWII Museum 
  26. History Extra
  27. GCHQ
  28. WW2 Tweets from 1942
  29. Science Museum

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