World War II Actions - Aerial Warfare Events


The air war of World War 2 was one of great loss and Aces, spread about from Europe to Africa, the Pacific to Asia.

There are a total of (391) World War II Actions - Aerial Warfare Events events in the SecondWorldWarHistory.com database. Entries are listed below by date-of-occurrence ascending (first-to-last). Other leading and trailing events may also be included for perspective.

Day-by-Day Timeline of Events


Wednesday, January 10th, 1940

A German plane carrying two officers and the German invasion plans of Western Europe scheduled for January 17th mistakenly lands in Belgium. This forces Hitler to push the invasion back.

Friday, May 31st, 1940

The U.S. government commits millions to a new defense program aimed at modernizing and strengthening the current force.

Saturday, November 13th, 1943

US Navy warplanes and warships begin the bombardment of Japanese positions at Makin and Tarawa in preparation for the planned amphibious assaults.

Saturday, November 20th, 1943

US Navy warplanes and warships conclude their bombardment of Japanese positions.

Friday, June 16th, 1944

The 1st Mobile Fleet of the IJN meets up with the Japanese Southern Force west of the Philippines.

Friday, July 7th, 1944

After heavy bombing by British Royal Air Force elements, British and Canadian army forces regroup and begin their offensive to take Caen from the Germans.

Saturday, December 16th, 1944

The German Army launch their Ardennes offensive against elements of the American US VIII located between Aachen and Bastogne.

Saturday, June 17th, 1944

US amphibious assault elements arrive to take Saipan.

Sunday, September 17th, 1944

Operation Market Garden is activated. Parachute landings take place at Eindhoven, Veghel, Grave and Oosterbeek.



Saturday, December 16th, 1944

Initial progress on the assault is good for the Germans, however, the US 2nd and 99th Divisions hold fast at Elsenborn and Malmedy.

Monday, June 19th, 1944

The first Japanese raid assaults US Task Force 58 through a combined force of IJN and IJA aircraft commitment. The American response nets 35 enemies in the first phase of the attack.

Sunday, September 17th, 1944

The US 101st Airborne Division landing at Eindhoven and Veghel are successful in their capturing of bridges.

Saturday, December 16th, 1944

Bad weather soon sets in over the Ardennes region, limiting Allied air support to counter the German advances.

Monday, June 19th, 1944

The second raid of arriving Japanese aerial strike force is identified and attacked by the Americans resulting in some 97 Japanese aircraft downed.

Sunday, September 17th, 1944

The US 82nd Airborne Division landing at Grave is successful in capturing its target bridge.

Monday, June 19th, 1944

At 9:05am, the USS Albacore lands a fish into the side of the IJN Taiho aircraft carrier.

Sunday, September 17th, 1944

British paratroopers landing at Arnhem run straight into the 9th and 10th SS Panzer Divisions who are in the area ungoing refitting. The bridge at Arnhem is captured by British forces but the group is quickly cut off from help by the Germans.

Monday, June 19th, 1944

At 12:20pm, the USS Cavalla attack submarine hits the IJN Shokaku with torpedoes.



Monday, June 19th, 1944

The third Japanese attack includes 47 aircraft which are met by 40 American fighters resulting in 7 enemies downed.

Tuesday, June 19th, 1944

A fourth Japanese flight group of 49 aircraft is assailed by 27 American Hellcats netting 30 more Japanese targets.

Wednesday, September 20th, 1944

The US 82nd Airborne, backed by the British XXX Corps, take the bridge over the Waal River at Nijmegen.

Monday, June 19th, 1944

At approximately 4:24pm, the carrier IJN Shokaku, suffering extensive damage from American warplanes, goes under.

Monday, June 19th, 1944

Around 4:28pm, the carrier IJN Taiho joins the IJN Shokaku.

Thursday, September 21st, 1944

British paratroopers at Arnhem give up control of their bridge against a stronger German foe and instead concentrate on surviving by utilizing the town of Arnhem itself as a defense.

Tuesday, June 20th, 1944

At 4:30pm, some 216 American aircraft are launched in response to the Japanese attacks.

Wednesday, December 20th, 1944

By this date, the 101st Airborne Division at Bastogne is completely encircled by the German XLVII Panzer Corps.

Tuesday, June 20th, 1944

American dive bomber aircraft successfully attack, and subsequently sink, the aircraft carrier IJN Hiyo.



Friday, September 22nd, 1944

Elements of the Polish Parachute Brigade, delayed multiple times from earlier participation in the operation, finally land south of Arnhem. Their mission is to reinforce the battered British 1st Airborne Division.

Tuesday, June 20th, 1944

The American aerial force claims another two IJN tanker vessels.

Monday, September 25th, 1944

Remaining elements of the British 1st Airborne Division out of Arnhem make their way across the Neder Rijn River in retreat. They intend on meeting up with XXX Corps still making their way to the area.

Tuesday, June 20th, 1944

The aircraft carrier - IJN Zuikaku - takes heavy damage from American warplanes.

Tuesday, June 20th, 1944

The aircraft carrier - IJN Chiyoda - takes heavy damage from American warplanes.

Wednesday, September 27th, 1944

Despite valliant actions, the Polish Parachute Brigade is forced to surrender at Arnhem.

Tuesday, June 20th, 1944

During the attack, American fighter pilots score a further 65 enemy aircraft.

Saturday, December 23rd, 1944

2,000 Allied air sorties are launched in improving skies against the Germans on the ground.

Tuesday, June 20th, 1944

By 8:45pm, the American attack shows a loss of 100 aircraft with 80 being lost to landing accidents at night or lack of fuel, forcing many airmen to ditch into the sea.



Saturday, December 23rd, 1944

Supplies are dropped from Allied transport planes to the beleagured forces held up at Bastogne.

Saturday, December 23rd, 1944

Allied ground attack fighters target and destroy German ground vehicles and troop concentrations. Without air support of their own, there is little that the Germans can do in response.

Monday, September 18th, 1944

American B-17 bombers land at Poltava, now under Soviet control, to refuel. Onboard are arms and supplies meant for the Polish resistance.

Monday, September 25th, 1944

American air drops deliver their much-needed cargo to the Polish resistance below. However, the drop zones are in firm German control and supplies are captured soon after landing.

Friday, January 12th, 1945

The Red Army enacts a massive offensive against German foes along the East Front. His targets are German Army Group A and Army Group Center located in East Prussia and Poland. The battle line is a long running front from the Lithuanian coast down to the Balkans region.

Friday, January 12th, 1945

The Red Army offensive is spear-headed by the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Belorussian Fronts as well as the 1st Baltic Front joined by the 1st Ukrainian Front.

Sunday, January 14th, 1945

Initial thrusts by the Soviet Army prove positive against the German defense.

Tuesday, January 16th, 1945

Adolf Hitler reorders his forces, weakening key areas of defense, to attempt a flanking manuever against the Red Army near Poznan.

Wednesday, January 17th, 1945

The Polish capital city of Warsaw officially falls to the advancing Soviet Army.



Wednesday, January 17th, 1945

Soviet forces engage German foes in East Prussia with gains being made towards Danzig and Konigsberg.

Saturday, January 20th, 1945

Hitler orders his 6th SS Panzer Army out of the Ardennes forrest on the West Front towards Budapest, Hungary in the east.

Thursday, August 31st, 1939

Event person portrait
Adolf Hitler provides the final orders for the invasion of Poland.

Friday, September 1st, 1939

German airborne elements begin bombardment of Polish defensive targets. At 6:00 AM, 50 German divisions making up Army Group North and Army Group South flood into Poland. Army Group South's mission is the capture of the Polish capital of Warsaw.

Sunday, September 3rd, 1939

Britain declares war on Germany leading British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain to arrange a war cabinet.

Monday, September 4th, 1939

The British Royal Air Force launches its first bombing missions against German targets - these being warships stationed off of the northwest coast of Germany.

Friday, September 8th, 1939

German ground forces arrive at the outskirts of the Polish capital of Warsaw, covering an astounding 200 miles in a single week.

Saturday, September 9th, 1939

Polish Poznan army units launch a counter-offensive against the German army at Kutno on the Bzura.

Sunday, September 10th, 1939

Polish forces at the Modline fortress some 20 miles north of Warsaw fall under siege to the German Army.



Sunday, September 17th, 1939

Soviet army elements begin their invasion of Poland from the east. Attacks occur near Vilnius and Bialystok.

Sunday, September 17th, 1939

Polish resistance at the Bzura River north of Lodz finally surrender to the Germans. Some 170,000 Polish prisoners are taken captive.

Monday, September 18th, 1939

The Polish city of Vilnius falls to the Soviet army.

Monday, September 18th, 1939

The Polish government flees to Romania and is held. A government-in-exile is hastily arranged.

Tuesday, September 19th, 1939

German and Soviet army elements finally meet one another in Poland at Brest-Litovsk.

Friday, September 22nd, 1939

The Polish city of Bialystok falls to the Soviet Army.

Friday, September 22nd, 1939

The Polish City of Lwow falls to the Soviet Army.

Wednesday, September 27th, 1939

The Polish capital of Warsaw officially falls.

Thursday, September 28th, 1939

Polish forces fighting it out at the Modline fortress officially surrender.



Friday, September 29th, 1939

The German-Soviet Boundary Friendship Treaty is signed between German representative von Ribbentrop and Soviet representative Molotov. Poland is divided into a western zone under German control and an eastern zone under Soviet control.

Monday, October 2nd, 1939

The last valiant gap of Polish resistance - numbering some 4,500 soldiers under the command of Admiral Unruh - north of Danzig on the Polwysep Helski peninsula falls to the Germans.

Friday, May 10th, 1940

German airborne elements land across Belgium and Holland in advance of ground forces, capturing key bridges and routes.

Friday, May 10th, 1940

German paratroopers land in The Hague and Rotterdam.

Friday, May 10th, 1940

89 German paratroopers land and take the Belgium fortress of Eben Emael with its garrison of 2,000 soldiers.

Wednesday, May 15th, 1940

After periods of heavy bombing all across Rotterdam, the Dutch surrender to the Germans.

Tuesday, May 21st, 1940

An Allied counterattack against the German Army near Arras ends in failure as the attack is itself countered by another advancing German land force.

Friday, May 24th, 1940

In a stunning move, Hitler orders his forces not to cross the Lens-Bethune-St Omer-Gravelines line, allowing the retreating Allied forces more time to reach the French coast.

Friday, May 24th, 1940

German Luftwaffe bombers hammer Allied defensive positions in and around the French port city of Dunkirk.



Saturday, June 1st - August 12th, 1940

German Luftwaffe forces concentrate efforts on maintaining control over the vital shipping lanes of the North Sea. At least 30,000 merchant ships are destroyed during this period.

Tuesday, June 4th, 1940

German Luftwaffe bombers cease bombardment of Dunkirk.

Monday, August 12th, 1940

The first attacks on RAF airfields and radar stations are conducted by German fighters and bombers. Germany intends on destroying RAF air supremacy before attempting its land invasion.

Tuesday, July 16th, 1940

Hitler delivers Fuhrer Directive 17 as Operation Sea Lion - the land invasion of the British mainland to occur between September 19th and September 26th.

Tuesday, August 13th, 1940

"Eagle Day" is enacted - a four day bombardment of key RAF airfields and radar installations. Poor weather initially delays the assault and any bombing thereafter produces mixed results.

Tuesday, August 13th, 1940

Portland is heavily bombed by the German Luftwaffe.

Tuesday, August 13th, 1940

Andover is heavily bombed by the German Luftwaffe.

Tuesday, August 13th, 1940

Southampton is heavily bombed by the German Luftwaffe.

Tuesday, August 13th, 1940

At least 40 total Luftwaffe aircraft are destroyed by the RAF and ground-based flak teams.



Thursday, August 15th, 1940

74 Luftwaffe aircraft launched from bases in Denmark and Norway are lost on what will be remembered as "Black Thursday".

Saturday, August 17th, 1940

The RAF is forced to poach the ranks of Bomber Command in an effort to fill its dwindling supply of capable fighter pilots.

Monday, August 19th - August 24th, 1940

Poor weather and overcast skies limit any major German bombing efforts over Britain.

Monday, August 19th, 1940

Underestimating overall RAF fighter strength, Luftwaffe commander Hermann Goering changes offensive tactics and orders his fighters to tempt RAF fighters to duke it out in the skies as opposed to bombing them while still on the ground.

Saturday, August 24th - August 31st, 1940

Luftwaffe bombing resumes. During this period, RAF airfields are hammered with the loss of 200 fighters. However, losses for the Luftwaffe number some 330 aircraft.

Tuesday, September 3rd, 1940

Due to consistent Luftwaffe losses and inconclusive results across the entire campaign, Hitler postpones Operation Sea Lion to September 21st.

Saturday, September 7th, 1940

In an effort to break the resolve of the British people, Hitler orders the bombing of London over the bombing of strategic RAF airfields and installations.

Saturday, September 7th, 1940

348 bombers and 617 fighters of the German Luftwaffe descend on the British capital city of London in a massive bombing raid.

Sunday, September 15th, 1940

Two massive bombing raids are conducted against Britain. The German Luftwaffe sees some 300 total RAF fighters airborne, showcasing Goering's gross estimate of total RAF air power. 80 German aircraft are lost in total. This day would go on to become "Battle of Britain Day".



Monday, September 16th, 1940

The German Luftwaffe redirects it sbombing campaign to now cover night-bombing of British cities.

Tuesday, September 17th, 1940

With the unexpected results of his campaign against Britain, Hitler officially postpones Operation Sea Lion indefinitely.

Monday, October 21st, 1940

Operation Judgement - the Allied attack on the Italian naval base at Taranto - is postponed due to mechanical issues aboard the carrier HMS Eagle and a fire aboard the carrier HMS Illustrious.

Saturday, November 9th, 1940

The HMS Illustrious moves on Taranto.

Saturday, November 9th, 1940

A Swordfish biplane torpedo bomber is lost to engine failure.

Sunday, November 10th, 1940

Another Swordfish torpedo bomber is lost to mechnical failure.

Sunday, November 10th, 1940

The British naval force moving against Taranto comes under attack from Italian aircraft near Malta.

Sunday, November 10th, 1940

An Italian bomber is downed in the fighting near Malta.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

A third Royal Navy Swordfish aircraft is lost to engine malfunction. A bad batch of gasoline is centered on as the source of the Swordfish issues.



Monday, November 11th, 1940

At 10:00 PM, the first wave of Swordfish bombers is launched from HMS Illustrious, now stationed off of Cephalonia.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

At 10:58 PM, signal aircraft lead the first wave over Taranto, marking torpedo targets as they pass.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

At 11:14 PM, the Italian battleship Cavour is struck by a Royal Navy torpedo delivered via Swordfish L4A. L4A is later downed by anti-aircraft fire, though both crewmembers survive.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

At 11:15 PM, the Italian vessel Doria is struck twice by torpedoes in her forward section.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

The Italian ship Littorio is struck by a torpedo along her starboard side. Swordfish L4M follows with another strike to the same side.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

A Swordfish torpedo meant for the Vittorio Veneto fails to reach its mark, exploding harmlessly on the sea floor.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

The Libeccio is hit by a Royal Navy torpedo but the munition fails to explode.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

At 11:35 PM, the second wave of Royal Navy torpedo-laden aircraft moves into position.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

Once again, the bombing wave is led by signal aircraft marking targets with flares.



Monday, November 11th, 1940

Two signal aircraft attack the oil depot at Taranto but fail to produce much damage.

Monday, November 11th, 1940

The Italian battleship Caio Duilio is struck at her bow by a Royal Navy torpedo.

Tuesday, November 12th, 1940

At 1:01 AM, The sinking Littorio is struck by another torpedo.

Tuesday, November 12th, 1940

Swordfish E4H is downed by enemy anti-aircraft fire, killing her co-pilot.

Tuesday, November 12th, 1940

Swordfish E5H misses her mark against the Vittorio Veneto.

Tuesday, November 12th, 1940

Swordfish L5F scored a direct hit via bomb on the Trento.

Tuesday, November 12th, 1940

By 1:22 AM, the attack on Taranto harbor is officially over.

Tuesday, November 12th, 1940

By 3:30 AM, all but two Swordfish aircraft are accounted for.

Tuesday, March 11th, 1941

President Roosevelt signs the Lend-Lease Act into law allowing the United States government to militarily support - with delayed payments - any and all allies when U.S. interests are threatened.



Thursday, March 21st, 1941

A coup by Yugoslav Air Force personnel overthrows Prince Paul.

Monday, March 24th, 1941

Rommel begins his attack near El Agheila.

Sunday, April 6th, 1941

Operation Marita - the dual Germany invasion of Greece and Yugoslavia - is put into action. Twenty-four total divisions are involved, including some 1200 tanks.

Tuesday, April 8th, 1941

A massive German bombing raid on the Yugoslavian capital city of Belgrade nets over 300,000 civilian casualties.

Saturday, April 12th, 1941

German forces launching from Romania, Austria, Hungary and Bulgaria along with an Italian contigent from Albania capture and secure the Yugoslavian capital of Belgrade.

Friday, April 25th, 1941

Fuhrer Directive No.28 is issued by Adolf Hitler, calling for the invasion of the island of Crete through Operation Mercury led by General Kurt Student.

Saturday, April 26th, 1941

German airborne elements attempt to capture the bridge over the Corinth Canal in an attempt to encircle the retreating allies. The bridge is lost in the attack while the Allies have already moved on.

Thursday, April 30th, 1942

Spring over Russia brings about seasonal rains turning once solid and dependable ground into a muddy nightmare for both armies. As such, offensives are limited or stalled altogether.

Thursday, April 30th, 1942

German Army forces partially regroup and recover from the constant barrage of Soviet offensives.



Thursday, April 30th, 1942

By this time, over 1 million German soldiers have been killed in action since the start of Operation Barbarossa.

Monday, May 19th, 1941

In advance of the Crete invasion, RAF fighters are relocated to Egypt for safe-keeping.

Tuesday, May 20th, 1941

Allied flak teams destroy as many as 50% of the invading German transport planes in the first few hours of the operation.

Tuesday, May 20th, 1941

Operation Mercury is officially launched.

Tuesday, May 20th, 1941

At approximately 7:00 AM, the first German airborne troops land at locations near Maleme and Khania.

Tuesday, May 20th, 1941

At least 500 Junkers Ju 52 transport aircraft are utilized in the first wave of airdrops over Crete.

Tuesday, May 20th, 1941

Between 1:30 and 2:00 PM, the second wave of German airborne troops take off from Greece towards drop zones in Crete.

Tuesday, May 20th, 1941

In-air losses for the second wave of German paratroopers is nearly equal to the first thanks to the stellar Allied flak defenses on Crete.

Tuesday, May 20th, 1941

At about 2:00 PM, the second wave of German paratroops land around Heraklion and Rethymnon.



Tuesday, May 20th, 1941

The first day of the German invasion of Crete sees little progress as many strategic positions are not under German control yet.

Wednesday, May 21st, 1941

A German offensive against Heraklion is pushed away by at least 8,000 dug-in Allied soldiers.

Friday, May 23rd, 1941

German dive bombers destroy the HMS Kelly and HMS Kashmir, two Royal Navy destroyers.

Friday, May 23rd, 1941

German dive bombers destroy the HMS Gloucester and the HMS Fiji, two Royal Navy cruisers.

Tuesday, July 1st, 1941

Panzergruppe 2 and Panzergruppe 3 cross the Berezina River west of Minsk, heading towards Smolensk and Vitebsk.

Thursday, July 3rd, 1941

Panzergruppe 2 and Panzergruppe 3 now form up as part of General Gunther von Kluge's 4th Panzer Army.

Wednesday, July 9th, 1941

Soviet defenses at Brest-Litovsk, Bialystok, Volkovysk, Gorodishche and Minsk fall to the invading German Army.

Wednesday, July 9th, 1941

Panzergruppe 3 continues north to Vitebsk.

Wednesday, July 9th, 1941

Gurderian's army moves south towards Mogliev.



Thursday, July 10th, 1941

Guderian's forces cross the Dniepr River 50 miles outside of Smolensk.

Sunday, July 13th, 1941

Defenses across Smolensk are prepared under the direction of the Soviet 16th Army.

Sunday, July 13th, 1941

The Soviet 19th Army makes its way into Smolensk.

Sunday, July 13th, 1941

The Soviet 20th Army arrives in Smolensk.

Wednesday, July 16th, 1941

Smolensk falls to the German 29th Motorized Division.

Wednesday, July 16th, 1941

Panzergruppe 3 heads towards Yartsevo.

Wednesday, July 16th, 1941

Marshal Timoshenko and his 4th and 13th Armies near the Sohz River counterattack the Germans at Smolensk.

Thursday, July 17th, 1941

The German Army begins to tighten the noose around the encircled Soviet forces numbering some 25 divisions.

Saturday, July 19th, 1941

A German High Command directive calls for the army to complete the destruction of Soviet forces around Smolensk and then head south to tackle forces in Kiev instead of marching on Moscow herself - this decision is viewed as the turning point to Germany's defeat in Russia.



Sunday, June 22nd, 1941

Operation Barbossa is put into effect - the German invasion of the Soviet Union.

Tuesday, July 22nd, 1941

The Soviet counterattack at Smolensk is driven back by Guderian's forces.

Tuesday, July 22nd, 1941

The German Army begins to encircled in Soviet Army pockets held up outside of Smolensk, Vitebsk and Mogilev.

Tuesday, July 22nd, 1941

A Soviet offensive meant to break the German stranglehold fails due to poor coordination.

Thursday, July 24th, 1941

The German encirclement of Soviet forces is completed.

Sunday, June 29th, 1941

General Guderian's Panzergruppe 2 meets General Hoth's Panzergruppe 3 in Minsk.

Sunday, June 29th, 1941

Russian army forces are encirlced at key cities across the Soviet Union.

Tuesday, August 5th, 1941

The Soviet defense of Smolensk is obliterated and falls taking with it the end of the Soviet 16th and 20th Armies.

Tuesday, August 5th, 1941

300,000 Soviet prisoners, 3,200 tanks and 3,100 artillery guns are captured by the Germans at Smolensk.



Tuesday, August 5th, 1941

The drive on Smolensk nets a total of 600,000 Russian prisoners of war, 5,700 tanks and 4,600 artillery pieces.

Thursday, September 25th, 1941

The Crimea finds itself cutoff from the rest of the Soviet Union by German Army forces made up of German Army Group South.

Friday, September 26th - November 26th, 1941

Over the course of two months, Soviet Major-General I.Y. Pretov and his band of 32,000 Independent Maritime Army soldiers set up a vast network of defenses at the fortress in Sevastopol. The defense consists of three well-defended rings.

Sunday, November 16th, 1941

By this date, Lieutenant-General von Manstein and his German 11th Army take most of Crimea with the exception of Sevastapol.

Wednesday, November 26th, 1941

The Japanese naval fleet leaves home port and heads to Hawaii.

Friday, December 5th, 1941

The Soviets launch a full-scale counter-attack along a 500-mile front encompassing 19 Russian armies against Field Marshal von Bock's German Army Group Centre near Moscow.

Saturday, December 6th, 1941

No fewer than 17 German motorized divisions retreat from the Soviet advance.

Saturday, December 6th, 1941

The Soviet 31st Army cuts 12 miles into the German lines.

Sunday, December 7th, 1941

The Imperial Japanese Navy attack commences with their assault. The force is made up of 423 aircraft and converges on the Hawaiian Islands.



Sunday, December 7th, 1941

At 6:00AM, the first wave of 183 Japanese Navy aircraft takes off from their carriers, just north of Oahu, to make the 230 mile trek. The target is the US Pacific Fleet.

Sunday, December 7th, 1941

At 7:02AM, the Japanese attack wave is located on American radar by two US Army personnel who bring it to the attention of a junior officer. The officer, expecting a flight of Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses to arrive that day, disregards the alert.

Sunday, December 7th, 1941

At approximately 7:15AM, the second wave of 167 Japanese Navy planes takes off from their carriers towards Pearl.

Sunday, December 7th, 1941

At 7:53AM, complete surprise by the Japanese Navy and the first wave begins their initial strike. This force is made up of 50 medium bombers, 43 A6M Zero fighters and 40 Kate torpedo bombers. Targets are the battleships hunkered down in the harbor and airfields used by the USAAF.

Sunday, December 7th, 1941

The second wave of Japanese Navy aircraft swoops in attacking targets of opportunity including auxiliary ships in the harbor and the all-important harbor facilities.

Sunday, December 7th, 1941

The attack on Pearl Harbor is over at 9:45AM. Over 2,400 people are killed and a further 1,178 are wounded. More die in the ensuing days while 1,104 sailors eventually perish within the hull of the battleship USS Arizona, its magazine stores ignited by a single Japanese bomb.

Tuesday, December 9th - December 13th, 1941

General Guderian's Panzergruppe 2 is cut off from General Kluge's 4th Army.

Tuesday, December 16th, 1941

Amid the mounting pressures and expectations of his superiors back in Germany, Field Marshal von Bock requests reassignment away from Army Group Centre.

Wednesday, December 17th, 1941

Lieutenant-General von Manstein launches a major offensive against the Soviet soldiers holed up in the Sevastopol fortress.



Wednesday, December 17th, 1941

Field Marshal von Kluge is tapped to replace Field Marshal von Bock as leader of Army Group Centre.

Friday, December 26th, 1941

Manstein's offensive gains substantial ground, piercing the first two Soviet defensive rings.

Friday, December 26th, 1941

Soviet naval forces land army troops near Kerch.

Sunday, December 28th, 1941

More Soviet forces land near Kerch via amphibious transports, bolstering Red Army power in the area.

Sunday, December 28th, 1941

In the face of growing Soviet Army opposition, von Manstein calls off his offensive on Sevastopol.

Thursday, January 1st - January 31st, 1942

Over the course of the month, three Soviet armies, under the command of Major-General D.T. Kozlov, are called to the newly created "Crimea Front".

Wednesday, January 7th, 1942

With progress over the Germans being made on several fronts, Soviet forces launch another offensive to try and encircle Army Group Centre.

Monday, January 19th, 1942

The Japanese Army makes short work of the light British defenses, covering some 230 miles in reaching Tavoy.

Sunday, January 25th, 1942

The Soviet movement begins losing steam after consecutive weeks of fighting. Man and machine are beginning to show their limitations.



Saturday, February 14th, 1942

By this time, the Japanese have captured Borneo, Celebes and Sarawak.

Sunday, February 15th, 1942

Singapore eventually falls to the might of the Japanese assault resulting in the capture of some 60,000 Allied prisoners against the cost of 2,000 Japanese soldiers.

Thursday, February 19th, 1942

The Japanese 1st Air Fleet conducts a surprise attack on Allied ships at Broome and Darwin. Twelve ships are sunk in the assault.

Sunday, March 1st - April 30th, 1942

Hitler and his commanders flesh out Operation Blue - in invasion of the oil-rich, Russian-held Caucasus.

Wednesday, April 1st - May 31st, 1942

Over a two month period, German forces are resupplied and strengthened before a major offensive - Operation Bustard - to remove the Soviets from the Kerch peninsula. Among the resupply deliveries are 33 massive artillery pieces meant to destroy the Soviet defensive works at the fort in Sevastopol.

Sunday, April 5th, 1942

Hitler issues the official Fuhrer Directive for Operation Blue.

Monday, April 6th, 1942

The Imperial Japanese Navy unleashes a surprise attack, with some 120 aircraft, on British forces at Columbo Harbor, Ceylon.

Monday, April 6th, 1942

Twenty-six Allied aircraft are destroyed.

Monday, April 6th, 1942

The British Royal Navy cruisers HMS Cornwall and HMS Dorsetshire are sunk by the Japanese air strike.



Monday, April 6th, 1942

The British Royal Navy destroyer HMS Tenedos is sunk by the Japanese air strike.

Thursday, April 9th, 1942

An 85-strong Japanese Navy aircraft contingent attacks airfields and targets of opportunity at Trincomalee, Ceylon.

Thursday, April 9th, 1942

The HMS Hermes is one of four Royal Navy ships sunk by Japanese Navy aircraft.

Sunday, May 3rd, 1942

Forces of the Imperial Japanese Army land at Tulagi of the Solomons island group. Subsequent develop ensures a base of operations for Japanese logistics in the region.

Sunday, May 3rd, 1942

An Imperial Japanese Navy carrier force sets sail on patrol around the Solomons looking for American carrier battle groups.

Monday, May 4th, 1942

USS Yorktown launched strike aircraft south of Guadalcanal. At 6:30AM, the American Navy aircraft spot and subsequently target Japanese land emplacements and sea vessels in the area.

Monday, May 4th, 1942

The Japanese invasion force leaves Rabaul, New Britain, heading towards Port Moresby, New Guinea.

Wednesday, May 5th - May 6th, 1942

Foul weather limits detection of either carrier force across a two day span.

Tuesday, May 5th, 1942

The Japanese enact an offensive to take Corregidor Island, a strategic point providing access to Manila Bay.



Wednesday, May 6th, 1942

Corregidor Island falls to the Japanese, giving the invaders control over Manila Bay.

Thursday, May 7th, 1942

Allied Task Force 44, headed by Royal Navy Rear-Admiral Crace, moves in to intercept the Japanese invasion force. However, the force is prematurely spotted by Japanese reconnaissance aircraft resulting in a counter-assault of the Task Force by Japanese Navy warplanes. Crace and his force never make the intercept.

Thursday, May 7th, 1942

The USS Neosho and the USS Sims are sunk by Japanese aircraft.

Thursday, May 7th, 1942

The Allies spot the Japanese Covering Group escorting the invasion force.

Thursday, May 7th, 1942

The USS Lexington and the USS Yorktown launch their attack planes and sink the Japanese aircraft carrier Shoho in the process.

Thursday, May 7th, 1942

The Japanese invasion of Port Moresby is called off.

Friday, May 8th, 1942

Operation Blue begins.

Friday, May 8th, 1942

German General Manstein leads his 11th Army onto the Kerch Peninsula towards the city of Sevastopol.

Friday, May 8th, 1942

Lieutenant-General von Manstein launches his assault.



Friday, May 8th, 1942

Some 27 Japanese aircraft are launched under the cover of darkness in the hopes of locating the Allied Task Force. They come up empty and only six aircraft return safely home.

Friday, May 8th, 1942

Just past dawn, the Japanese and American carrier groups spot one another.

Friday, May 8th, 1942

At 9:25AM, Japanese and American warplanes take to the skies.

Friday, May 8th, 1942

At 11:40AM, US Navy warplanes manage to score devastating hits to the Japanese aircraft carrier Shokaku, severely damaging her.

Friday, May 8th, 1942

At 2:47PM, the American carrier USS Lexington is hit by a Japanese torpedo, causing a major explosion in her generator room.

Saturday, May 9th, 1942

Despite numbers against him, Japanese Vice-Admiral Takagi is ordered to send his warplanes aloft.

Saturday, May 9th, 1942

The Japanese aircraft do not locate the American fleet and any further actions are called off, effectively ending the Battle of Coral Sea.

Tuesday, May 12th, 1942

Soviet ground forces launch a pre-emptive offensive against German-held Kharkov.

Tuesday, May 12th, 1942

German forces enact Operation Fridericus and attempt to take Izyum.



Friday, May 15th, 1942

Manstein's offensive results in the taking of the Kerch peninsula from the Soviets.

Friday, May 15th, 1942

Sevastopol is cutt off from the rest of the Soviet Union by German Army elements.

Friday, May 15th, 1942

Manstein begins planning his next major offensive to take Sevastopol - this becomes Operation Sturgeon.

Friday, May 15th, 1942

Burma falls to the Japanese.

Tuesday, May 26th, 1942

Group Cruewell, made up of the Italian X and XI Corps, launches an assault on the northern portion of the Gazala Line in an attempt to divert Allied forces from the real attack coming from the south.

Tuesday, May 26th, 1942

Rommel begins his offense against the Gazala Line, made up of some 50 miles of British defenses.

Tuesday, May 26th, 1942

Beginning at 7:00PM, the German 90th Infantry Division, the 15th and 21st Panzer Divisions and the Italian XX Corps under Rommel launch their offensive along the southern portion of the Gazala Line.

Wednesday, May 27th, 1942

German forces south of Bir Hacheim make progress and begin to move northwards.

Wednesday, May 27th, 1942

The 1st Free French Brigade at Bir Hacheim holds off the German progress.



Thursday, May 28th, 1942

While trying to take Sidra Ridge, German Panzer force casaulties begin to mount significantly.

Sunday, May 31st, 1942

As the Allied defense along the Gazala line holds, Rommel is forced to change tactics, now concentrating his forces against the British 150th Brigade near Sidi Muftah.

Monday, June 1st, 1942

Nearly 30% of German tanks have been lost in Rommel's offensive.

Wednesday, June 3rd, 1942

The Northern Task Force begins its operation to take the Aleutian Island chain and divert USN forces to the region.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 4:30AM, the bombing of Midway Island begins with aircraft from Vice-Admiral Nagumo's First Carrier Strike Force.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

American fighter aircraft take heavy losses but force the Japanese Navy to launch a second attack.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 7:28AM, a Japanese reconniassance plane spots spots ten undetermined USN surface ships 200 miles northeast of the Japanese Midway invasion force.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 7:52AM, USS Enterprise and USS Hornet launch their dive bombers and torpedo planes.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 8:20AM, a surprised Nagumo receives his first report of American carriers in the area.



Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 8:37AM, aircraft of the second Japanese strike force returns to their respective carriers for rearming and refueling.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 9:00AM, USS Yorktown launches her aircraft with Nagumo's carrier force as the prime target.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

Between 9:30AM and 10:00AM, Torpedo planes from the USS Enterprise and USS Hornet begin their attacks on the Japanese carriers.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

The first wave of USN carrier dive-bombers has difficulty in locating their Japanese targets.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

All incoming USN Devastator attackers are shot down by Japanese Zero fighters in the span of six minutes.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

The initial American assault on the Japanese carrier strike force is over by 10:00AM.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 10:25AM, a follow-up strike made up of 37 Dauntless dive bombers finds the Japanese carriers - now stocked with armed and fueled aircraft on their decks.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

The three Japanese carriers - Kaga, Soryu and Akagi - are struck with bombs and ultimately sunk.

Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 12:00PM, Imperial Japanese Navy bomber aircraft strike against the attacking USS Yorktown.



Thursday, June 4th, 1942

At 5:00PM, the Imperial Japanese aircraft carrier Hiryu is set ablaze after being struck by no fewer than five direct bomb hits from aircraft of the USS Enterprise.

Friday, June 5th, 1942

The Allies attempt an offensive to drive the German pocket back from Sidi Muftah and fail. 230 Allied tanks are lost in the attack.

Saturday, June 6th, 1942

The British 150th Brigade is utterly destroyed under the German assault, resulting in 4,000 British prisoners of war.

Saturday, June 6th, 1942

The German Luftwaffe is called in to bomb Sevastopol.

Sunday, June 7th, 1942

The German 11th Army begins their assault on Sevastopol from the north at 2:30AM.

Wednesday, June 10th, 1942

The 1st Free French Brigade at Bir Hacheim can hold no more and retreat under the mounting German pressure.

Thursday, June 11th, 1942

The German Army breaks out of their pocket near Sidi Muftah.

Thursday, June 11th, 1942

German forces breaking out near Sidi Muftah target the British 7th Armored Division near El Adem.

Thursday, June 11th, 1942

The Allies go into full retreat as the Germans advance.



Friday, June 12th - June 16th, 1942

The German offensive against Sevastopol is repulsed by the 180,000 or so Russian soldiers holed up in the city.

Wednesday, June 17th, 1942

Manstein launches another assault on Sevastopol.

Thursday, June 18th, 1942

The city of Tobruk, defended by the 2nd South African Division, is completely surrounded by German forces.

Saturday, June 20th, 1942

Rommel begins his offensive against the defenders in Tobruk.

Saturday, June 20th, 1942

Artillery shells and Luftwaffe bombs rain upon Tobruk.

Sunday, June 21st, 1942

The 2nd South African Division under Allied General Klopper officially concede defeat and hand control of Tobruk to the Germans.

Saturday, June 27th, 1942

The Soviet Army is encircled and defeated at Kharkov, netting the Germans some 250,000 Soviet prisoners.

Saturday, June 27th, 1942

German forces complete their capture of Izyum.

Saturday, June 27th, 1942

The Romanian and German army forces capture key hilltop positions near Sevastopol.



Wednesday, July 1st, 1942

One last German push secures strategic positions throughout the city of Sevastopol.

Friday, August 7th, 1942

Amphibious forces spearheaded by the United States Marines begin against the Japanese-held island of Guadalcanal.

Saturday, August 8th, 1942

The amphibious landings largely conclude by this date.

Saturday, August 8th, 1942

By the end of the day and facing next to no opposition, the US soldiers capture and secure Henderson Field.

Saturday, August 8th, 1942

Naval battles ultimately take place between the Imperial Japanese Navy and the United States Navy for control of Guadalcanal.

Saturday, August 8th, 1942

Japanese bombers attack US forces at Henderson Field.

Saturday, August 8th, 1942

Just outside of Guadalcanal, the islands of Tulagi and Gavutu fall to the Allies.

Tuesday, August 18th, 1942

A Japanese counteroffensive sees an amphibious landing take place at Taivu. This landing zone is just 32 miles east of Henderson Field.

Wednesday, August 19th, 1942

Operation Jubilee is officially put into action.



Wednesday, August 19th, 1942

4,962 Canadian soldiers, along with 1,000 British troops and a 50-man contingent of American US Army Rangers set sail on no fewer than 237 boats towards Dieppe.

Wednesday, August 19th, 1942

At 3:48 AM, several Allied invasion vessels run into a German convoy, which actively engages the ships, ruining any chance the Allies held in the element of surprise. This event is a fore-telling of the day to follow.

Wednesday, August 19th, 1942

At 4:30 AM, Canadian soldiers wade ashore and take on the German coastal batteries at Berneval, Puys, Pourville and Varengville.

Wednesday, August 19th, 1942

At 5:20 AM, the main invasion force - made up of the 14th Army Tank Regiment, the Essex Scottish Regiment, and the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry - come ashore.

Wednesday, August 19th, 1942

At 5:35 AM, Allied armor makes it to the beach. Over half of the tanks are lost in the action.

Wednesday, August 19th, 1942

By 11:00 AM, disaster has completely befallen the invaders. Many are trapped, forced back or dead to a prepared German defense.

Wednesday, August 19th, 1942

By 2:00 PM, all survivors of the Dieppe invasion have been rescued. Left behind are 3,367 casualties, wounded, prisoners of war or missing.

Thursday, August 20th, 1942

The first of thirty-one US fighter aircraft arrive at Henderson Field.

Saturday, August 22nd, 1942

German land forces advancing into the Caucasus are stopped.



Tuesday, August 25th, 1942

Stalingard is officially under siege by the Germans Army.

Monday, August 31st, 1942

By this date, the Japanese have completed their takeovers of the Caroline Islands, the Gilbert Islands, the Marshall Islands, the Marianas Islands and a portion of the Solomon Islands. This is the farthest that the Japanese Empire would reach in the Pacific.

Sunday, November 8th, 1942

The Allied invasion forces reach North African shores.

Wednesday, November 11th, 1942

The British Eastern Task force capture the strategic airfield at Djidjelli via Bougie from Algiers.

Thursday, November 12th, 1942

German paratroopers move into the area near the airfield at Bone.

Sunday, November 15th, 1942

American paratroopers land at the airfield near Youks les Bains

Monday, November 16th, 1942

British paratroopers land and capture the airfield at Soul el Arba.

Wednesday, November 25th, 1942

In an effort to resupply their troops, the German Luftwaffe is called upon to exercise airdrops of vital supplies to the German 6th Army.

Wednesday, December 16th, 1942

The Soviet Army puts Operation Little Saturn into effect and attacks Rostov.



Tuesday, June 1st - June 30th, 1943

British and American authorities work together to formulate the Pointblank Directive - a combined air bombing campaign against the air production facilities of the German Luftwaffe.

Tuesday, July 13th, 1943

Adolph Hitler orders an end to Operation Citadel.

Sunday, August 15th, 1943

The Aleutian Islands Campaign comes to a close. The Japanese invasion is ultimately repelled.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

With only limited-range Allied fighter escorts, the first major air raid on Schweinfurt and Regensburg is launched. The air raid consists of 230 aircraft from the 1st Bombardment Wing and 146 aircraft of the 4th Bombardment Wing.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

Bad weather delays the original 5:30AM launch time of the operation.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

Aircraft of the 4th Bombardment Wing take-off at 6:20AM in an effort to reach its target in daylight.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

German Luftwaffe defense fighters attack the 4th Bombardment Wing formations passing over Germany.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

At 11:18AM, the 1st Bombardment Wing finally takes off.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

Some 250 German fighters, already alerted to the bomber group presence, are launched to repel subsequent air attacks.



Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

Sometime between 11:46AM and 12:09M, the 4th Bomber Group makes their bombing run on targets at Regensburg.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

At approximately 3:00PM, the 1st Bomber Group finally reaches its targets after incurring heavy losses from German fighters. Their bombing run ensues over Schweinfurt.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

At around 4:50PM, elements of the 4th Bomber Group begin landing at their pre-determined bases in North Africa. Twenty-four aircraft from the group are noted lost.

Tuesday, August 17th, 1943

At approximately 6:00PM, elements of the 1st Bomber Group begin landing back at their UK bases. Some 36 aircraft are missing.

Thursday, October 14th, 1943

Some 291 USAAF bombers of the 13th Bombardment Wing are once-again launched against Schweinfurt. Though 30% of German ball-bearing production is knocked out, 60 American aircraft do not return to home bases in the UK. The high level of losses in these raids forces the USAAF to temporarily suspend long-range bombing attacks into Germany.

Tuesday, November 30th, 1943

The British and Americans devise Operation Argument to counter the Luftwaffe threat through a round-the-clock bombing offensive; bad weather postpones any action.

Saturday, January 1st, 1944

A message to subordinates by US Army Air Force commanding general General H.H. Hap Arnold calls for the destruction of the German Luftwaffe before Allied landings can begin.

Saturday, January 22nd, 1944

Operation Shingle, the amphibious landings at Anzio, is enacted by the Allied. In lead is the US VI Corps under Major-General John Lucas.

Saturday, January 22nd, 1944

By 12AM midnight, some 45,000 Allied troops and 3,000 vehicles are on the beaches.



Sunday, January 23rd, 1944

The Anzio beachhead is consolidated into a concentrated pocket on the orders of Lucas.

Sunday, January 23rd, 1944

German Colonel-General von Mackensen takes control of the new 14th Army headquartered 30 miles west of Rome.

Sunday, January 23rd, 1944

The German Luftwaffe begins heavy strafing attacks and bombardment of Allied forces.

Tuesday, January 25th, 1944

The Anzio beachhead continues to grow with Allied troops and equipment, making it a prime target for the regrouping Germans.

Friday, January 28th, 1944

By this date, some 70,000 men, 27,000 tons of goods, 508 artillery guns and 237 tanks are ashore on the beachhead.

Friday, January 28th, 1944

Von Mackensen moves six divisions to Anzio, some ten miles of the Allied beachhead.

Friday, January 28th, 1944

The US 1st Armored Division captures the town of Aprilia.

Friday, January 28th, 1944

The Germans are driven back at Cisterna.

Thursday, February 10th, 1944

In a counter offensive, crack German paratroopers repel US forces and previous Allied gains are lost.



Monday, February 14th, 1944

The offensive is detailed further, taking the latest developments into account.

Monday, February 14th, 1944

American bombers strike the production facilities at Schweinfurt.

Tuesday, February 15th, 1944

In an effort to destroy the believed German defensive positions atop Monte Cassino, Allied bombers numbering 229 strong, lay waste to the monestary.

Tuesday, February 15th, 1944

Following the Allied aerial bombardment, the second major Allied offensive to take Cassino is launched.

Wednesday, February 16th, 1944

Kesselring launches a large counterattack against the invading Allied forces.

Saturday, February 19th, 1944

Better weather finally arrives allowing the RAF to send up its first 823-strong heavy bomber force. The target is Leipzig and 78 bombers are lost to the German defense.

Sunday, February 20th, 1944

American bombers and fighters take to the skies in force in support of the new bombing campaign. They number over 1,000 bombers and 660 fighters in escort. Twelve industrial target locations across Germany are hit. 21 American aircraft are lost.

Sunday, February 20th, 1944

Some 598 RAF bombers are sent airborne towards German targets.

Monday, February 21st, 1944

The Americans respond with another wave of 861 bombers with escorts. The target is the Luftwaffe production center in Brunswick.



Tuesday, February 22nd, 1944

Bad weather forces many-an-inflight accident for US bomber groups. Some 41 aircraft are lost. Nijmegen is accidentally bombed, causing over 200 civilian deaths.

Tuesday, February 22nd, 1944

American bomber groups begin medium bombing operations against German targets from bases within Italy.

Wednesday, February 23rd, 1944

Bad weather postpones any further bombing actions for the time being. The Allies take this time to regroup, repair, and restock.

Thursday, February 24th, 1944

With weather clearing, operations of Big Week continue. 266 American bombers strike Schweinfurt.

Thursday, February 24th, 1944

Over 900 American bombers are sent airborne to bomb aircraft-producing factories including Schweinfurt.

Thursday, February 24th, 1944

The USAAF 1st Division launches another bombing raid on Schweinfurt through 238 bombers and long-range escort fighters. Eleven aircraft are lost.

Thursday, February 24th, 1944

733 RAF bombers strike at Schweinfurt in a night time raid. 33 aircraft are lost.

Thursday, February 24th, 1944

A British bomber force made up of Handley Page Halifaxes and Avro Lancasters take part in a night-bombing raid on Schweinfurt, dropping some 2,000 tons of ordnance on the area.

Friday, February 25th, 1944

The final American air raid of Big Week is launched with 900 bombers against Regensburg, Augsburg and Forth.



Friday, February 25th, 1944

RAF bombers hit Augsburg with 594 aircraft in a night time raid.

Friday, February 25th, 1944

By the end of it all, 3,300 Allied sorties are launched in the offensive and 226 bombers are lost. 290 German fighters are destroyed and another further 90 are damaged.

Wednesday, March 15th, 1944

Artillery guns open up on Cassino while 600-plus Allied bombers attempt to shake the German defenders.

Thursday, March 30th - March 31st, 1944

Some 100 Avro Lancaster and Handley Page Halifax bombers mistakenly drop 400-tons of ordnance on Schweinfurt, thinking that it is their target of Nuremburg.

Saturday, April 1st - June 5th, 1944

Allied bombers increase their sorties across Northern and Western France in preparations of the D-Day landings. Targets include the vital railways, railyards, bridges and roads dotting the French landscape. These facilities will prove crucial to the German response to the invasion.

Monday, May 1st - May 31st, 1944

Plans begin for a major Soviet offensive against the German Army in the East.

Wednesday, May 17th, 1944

This date became one of the two best weather options for the Allied invasion of France.

Wednesday, May 17th, 1944

Weather on May 17th cancels the D-Day operation. Leaving the next best weather window of opportunity to be June 5th.

Wednesday, May 17th, 1944

June 5th is selected as the next official launch date for D-Day.



Saturday, May 20th, 1944

The Soviet offensive is detailed under the codename of "Operation Bagration".

Saturday, May 20th, 1944

The launch date for Operation Bagration is set for June 22nd.

Sunday, June 4th, 1944

Official word comes down that the June 5th landings will be postponed due to inclement weather across the North Sea.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

In preparation for the arrival of the regular armies by way of amphibious landing, British and American airborne paratroopers arrive in France just after midnight.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

Elements of the US 82nd and 101st Airborne divisions land across the Cotentin Peninsula. Despite all of the planning, their dropzones are widely scattered.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

British paratroopers of the 6th British Airborne Brigade land near Benouville.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

The British paratroopers take the bridges over the Caen Canal and the Orne River.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

British paratroopers destroy the coastal fortifications at Merville.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

No less than five key bridges over the Dives River are blown up by British paratroopers.



Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

Despite the confusion on the part of the misdropped Allied paratroopers, the defending Germans are thrown into an equal level of confusion, noting Allied airdrops all around them.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

Allied naval warships open up with their guns on German defensive positions along the French coast.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

Near the town of Pouppeville, the US 4th Infantry Division at Utah beach connects with the 101st Airborne Division paratroopers.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

British and French special forces elements out of Sword beach connect with the British paratroopers holding the key bridges over the Orne River.

Tuesday, June 6th, 1944

The German 21st Panzer Division is repelled by a combined Allied armor and air assault, saving further actions at Sword.

Thursday, June 22nd, 1944

Operation Bagration is put into action with General Zhukov in command.

Thursday, June 22nd, 1944

Totaling over 1.2 million troops, the 1st Baltic Front - along with the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Belorussian Fronts - are put into action along four fronts. Vitebsk is quickly taken and controlled. The 3rd Panzer Army suffers heavy losses.

Thursday, July 13th, 1944

A new Soviet land offensive is launched with elements of the Soviet 1st and 4th Ukranian Fronts. Their target is Germany Army Group North in the Ukraine on their way to southern Poland.

Friday, July 21st, 1944

8th Air Force B-17 and B-24 bombers are launched on Schweinfurt.



Monday, October 9th, 1944

8th Air Force B-17 and B-24 bombers are once again launched on Schweinfurt.

Saturday, March 24th, 1945

In preparation for the amphibious assault landings on the island of Okinawa, US Naval elements begin bombardment of shoreline positions.

Saturday, March 24th, 1945

The US 77th Infantry Division lands at the Kerama Islands to secure a staging post for the eventual invasion of Okinawa.

Thursday, March 29th, 1945

Further landings of US forces on the Kerama Islands, complete its capture for the Allies.

Saturday, March 31st, 1945

The US Navy lobs some 30,000 explosive shells on the Okinawa coastline by this time, ending a week of bombardment.

Sunday, April 1st, 1945

Two US Army and USMC divisions land along the southwest coast of Okinawa near Hagushi, meeting little resistance. The US 10th Army is commanded by Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner. Some 550,000 personnel and 180,000 soldiers take part in the fray.

Sunday, April 1st - April 30th, 1945

The final raid, this by American medium bombers, is launched against Schweinfurt.

Thursday, April 5th, 1945

Allied forces find and locate the Japanese defenders along the southern portion of Okinawa. Heavy defenses are noted.

Friday, April 6th, 1945

The deadly kamikaze air attack is unleashed on American Naval vessels in the Pacific. These aircraft appear as coordinated airstrikes and prove equally deadly to both sides. USN vessels off the coast of Okinawa itself are targeted. Some 34 US Navy ships fall victim.



Saturday, April 7th, 1945

In the early morning hours, US Navy reconnaissance aircraft spot the IJN Yamato and relay her position.

Saturday, April 7th, 1945

Task Force 38 launches some 380 aircraft against IJN Yamato.

Saturday, April 7th, 1945

With no air cover, the IJN Yamato is blasted to pieces by the American Navy warplanes. Her magazine stores explode in a fantastic display as she goes up in smoke. Most of her crew is lost with the ship in the afternoon hours.

Monday, April 16th, 1945

A five-day offensive is undertaken involving the American 77th Infantry Division and the island of Ie Shima. Ie Shima represents the tip of the Motobu Peninsula. Motobu is a defensive Japanese stronghold located to the west of Okinawa proper.

Friday, April 24th, 1945

The British Royal Air Force slow down the 12th Army offensive through intense bombing.

Friday, June 22nd, 1945

The fighting on Okinawa comes to a close as American forces overwhelm the islands determined Japanese defenders. Those that are not taken prisoner or die in the fighting, subject themselves to ritual suicides.

Friday, June 22nd, 1945

The Battle of Okinawa officially draws to a close and now represents the all-important staging area for the Allied invasion of the Japanese mainland.

Thursday, July 12th, 1945

The Allies conduct an amphibious landing at Sarangini Bay in a step towards removing the Japanese defenders at Mindanao.

Thursday, July 26th, 1945

Japanese defenders on Mindanao in the Philippines are defeated.



Saturday, August 4th, 1945

In the Far East theater of Burma, the remaining elements of the Japanese 28th Army are destroyed.

Monday, August 6th, 1945

The Boeing B-29 Superfortress 'Enola Gay' drops the first of two atomic bombs on the Japanese mainland - the target being the densely populated city of Hiroshima. About 70,000 of its citizens are killed and a further 70,000 are injured in the blast. Many more will die in the coming years from its effects.