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Author Topic: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
Timothy-
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Post These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: June 4, 2017, 08:40
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These 3 days in June were very significant in World War II. To start with, June 4, 1940 was the last day of the Dunkirk evacuation, the most famous such sea-borne evacuation in history, though only the third largest of the war. The British withdrew even more people in the flight from the rest of France in June 1940 as the country collapsed. And both were dwarfed by the German flight from the east in 1945, in which approximately 1.5 million were evacuated, with a loss of perhaps 2%. It was probably the Kriegsmarine's finest hour.

June 4, 1942 was also a very momentous day -- the day of the major carrier battle in the Midway campaign. When the day was done, 4 Japanese carriers had been fatally stricken, as well as the USS Yorktown. Japan never again had naval superiority in the Pacific, though it would win many more naval actions over the next year or so.

And on June 4, 1944, the American Fifth Army under Mark Clark occupied Rome. It was their big moment of publicity (which Clark, like so many higher commanders, craved) -- though only for a brief moment.

The reason their moment didn't last long is the great Normandy invasion. This was actually scheduled for June 5, 1944, but bad weather caused a one-day delay. The Allies landed on 5 beaches, and successfully made a lodgement on each. Within another day, all the beaches except the westernmost (Utah beach) would be linked up even as the first German reinforcements (the !2 SS Panzer Divsion) arrived. It would take nearly 2 months for the Allies to break out by way of the VII Corps' Operation Cobra.

Timothy-
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Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: June 7, 2017, 08:33
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June 7 has its own significance. The concluding action of the Midway campaign was the Japanese seize of Atta and Kiska in the Aleutians on June 7, 1942. (The Aleutians operation, including an airstrike on Dutch Harbor, was meant to distract the Americans. It ended up just leaving the Japanese at Midway weaker.)

And although it wasn' directly linked to World War II, it was on June 7, 1776 that Richard Henry Lee of Virginia presented the motion for the colonies to declare independence, which would finally reach fruition nearly a month later.

Brad-
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Brad Nelson
Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: June 7, 2017, 08:38
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Interesting events of June 7s past.

Kung Fu Zu
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Kung Fu Zu
Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: May 7, 2018, 09:56
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On May 7, 1945, Germany officially surrendered to the Allies, bringing an end to the war in Europe. The next day, May 8th, would become known as "V-E Day" i.e. victory in Europe day, the day the Allies confirmed acceptance of Germany's surrender.

Millions celebrated the end of the war in Europe, but those in power understood a stern test lay ahead; the defeat of the Empire of Japan.

Timothy-
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Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: May 7, 2018, 10:06
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Yes, we were in the middle of the battle for Okinawa. And the next invasion after that would have been in southern Kyushu, if it had been necessary. Mass starvation was the main alternative until Dr. Oppenheimer presented the sort of solution that probably made Barnes Wallis proud, even envious.

Timothy-
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Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: August 14, 2018, 10:58
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Today is the anniversary of the Japanese surrender in 1945 (though the difference in time between Tokyo and the United States makes that a bit problematic, I guess). The formal surrender came later, of course; this was merely their acceptance of the Potsdam terms and the end of hostilities (except in Manchuria, where the Russians weren't going to stop until they conquered the whole area). It was also the last act of gekokujo of the Japanese military -- a coup attempt to prevent the surrender which came close to "success".

If they had succeeded, who knows? Maybe Bill Halsey could have fulfilled his prediction that when the war ended, the Japanese language would only be spoken in Hell (or at least the afterlife).

Brad-
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Brad Nelson
Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: August 14, 2018, 11:41
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Japan surrendered to the only country that wouldn't have taken major reprisals afterward. They got off easy.

Timothy-
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Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: August 14, 2018, 12:18
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And if it hadn't been for the bomb, Stalin would have landed troops on Hokkaido and claimed it in the eventual peace settlement. Maybe northern Honshu as well. His ability to make assault landings was very limited, but the Japanese forces in the north were very weak in order to hold off the Americans as well as they could on Kyushu.

Timothy-
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Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: November 8, 2018, 22:21
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It's not summertime, but November 9 is the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht aka the Night of Glass, arguably as famous a pogrom as any in history.

Kung Fu Zu
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Kung Fu Zu
Post Re: These Days in World War II, June 4-6
on: November 9, 2018, 14:42
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but November 9 is the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht aka the Night of Glass, arguably as famous a pogrom as any in history.

Uncle Hugo (the only man I ever called uncle who was not my blood uncle) left Germany about this time. (1938)His choices were China and Bolivia. Wisely, he chose Bolivia. I think he may have been influenced and helped by the fact that a famous and very wealthy German Jew named Moritz Hochschild who had moved to Bolivia in the early 1900s. He helped many Jews get out of Germany before WWII.

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