Skip to comments.RUSSIANS, AT ’41 FRONT, CUT KURSK RAILWAY; U.S. GAINS IN TUNISIA; NAVIES SPAR IN PACIFIC (2/4/43)
Posted on 02/04/2013 4:25:29 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson
I came upon the article posted below in the March 2, 1943 issue. I know Im not supposed to post stuff out of sequence but this seems to call for an exception to the rule. I will post it again at the proper time - HJS.
German 17th Army cut off in the Kuban
Thursday, February 4, 1943 www.onwar.com
On the Eastern Front... The German 17th Army is cut off in the Kuban Peninsula and must be supplied by sea from the Crimea. Kanevskaya, to the east of Tikhorestsk and only 30 miles from the Sea of Azov, is capture by Soviet forces. Further north, Shcigny, about 40 miles east of Kursk, is captured in the southwestern offensive toward Kharkov.
In North Africa... Units of the British 8th Army cross into Tunisia.
In the Solomon Islands... On Guadalcanal, about 5000 more Japanese troops are evacuated by a squadron (led by Admiral Koyanagi) consisting of one cruiser and 22 destroyers. Four of the ships are damaged. Meanwhile, the US 147th Regiment advances west of Tassafaronga.
In the Atlantic... Convoy SC-118 is attacked by 20 U-boats in a running battle that will last five days (to February 9th). There are ten escorts available at first.
February 4th, 1943
UNITED KINGDOM: New guidelines to Allied bomber crews have emerged from the Casablanca summit attended by the prime minister, Mr. Churchill, and President Roosevelt last month. An air ministry directive sent to Sir Arthur Harris, the chief of Bomber Command, today says that his primary objective is the “progressive destruction ... of the German military, industrial and economic system and the undermining of the morale of the German people.”
Allied targets range from Bremen to Rabaul, where Japanese warships are hit, but the top priority is the German submarine building industry.
The prototype Bristol Buckingham (DX 249) a day bomber with a crew of 4, flies but without armament. (22)
Light cruiser HMS Swiftsure launched.
Destroyer HMS Virago launched.
Frigate HMS Plym launched.
Minesweeper HMS Brave launched.
Submarine HMS Syrtis launched.
Sloop HMS Wren commissioned.
U-1166 laid down.
U-741, U-742, U-967, U-968 launched.
U-362, U-961 commissioned. (Dave Shirlaw)
USSR: Black Sea Fleet and Azov Flotilla: MS “T-515” (ex-”Gelenjik”) - sunk by field artillery, close to Ujnaya Ozereika (later raised and went into service) (Sergey Anisimov)(69)
Soviet commandos land behind German lines near Novorossiisk, on the Black Sea.
Generalmajor orders OPERATION LADIES EXCUSE ME. This operation helps Schorners men of the 40th Panzer Corps to escape the oncoming Soviet onslaught. During ‘Operation Ladies Excuse Me’, it is known that Schorner actually took control of a Flak Anti-Aircraft gun.(Gene Hanson)
NORTH AFRICA: The first units of the British 8th Army cross from Libya into Tunisia.
LIBYA: Tripoli: Men of the 51st Highland and New Zealand Divisions - all heroes of El Alamein - formed up to march past Winston Churchill today. The prime minister is on a whirlwind tour of the Middle East - with a significant stop in neutral Turkey - and is spending the day with his troops.
The premier toured the harbour - where engineers were clearing blockships and port installations. He leaves for Algiers tomorrow, despite a death threat from a notorious hired assassin.
SOLOMON ISLANDS: Guadalcanal: Japan’s commander on Guadalcanal, Lt-Gen Haruchi Hyakutake, tonight slipped aboard the destroyer HAMAKAZE and hurried to his cabin, marking the end of Japan’s six-month attempt to conquer the island and a first land victory in the Pacific for the Allies.
With Hyakutake are most of the senior staff and 4,000 men, leaving behind a rearguard of 2,000 due to be evacuated in two day’s time. During tonight’s evacuation a “Tokyo Express”, comprising 20 destroyers, raced down to Cape Esperance. During the operation they were harried by airstrikes by 64 US bombers and fighters of the “Cactus Air Force” - named after the codename for the island. US fliers claimed 17 Japanese planes, while Japanese Zero fighters downed ten US planes.
First estimates from this bloody campaign put US total casualties at 6,300 and Japanese casualties at 24,000 dead. Both sides lost 24 ships; tonnage losses are roughly equal. The losses hit harder at Japan, which cannot match America’s shipbuilding rate. The US forces also have significant gains, not the least of which is the psychological boost of inflicting a defeat on Japan. The greatest material gain is to deny Japan use of the airstrip at Henderson Field.
U.S.A.: The motion picture “Air Force” opens at the Hollywood Theater in New York City. Directed by Howard Hawks, this action drama about the crew of a B-17 in the Pacific stars John Garfield, Gig Young, Arthur Kennedy, Harry Carey, George Tobias and Faye Emerson. (Jack McKillop)
Destroyer USS Kimberly launched.
Submarine USS Balao commissioned. (Dave Shirlaw)
ATLANTIC OCEAN: Convoy SC-118 comes under concentrated attack from German U-boats.
U-187 (Type IXC/40) is sun in the North Atlantic, in position 50.12N, 36.35W, by depth charges from the British destroyers HMS Vimy and Beverley. 9 dead and 45 survivors. (Alex Gordon)
U-414 was attacked in the North Atlantic by an aircraft and damaged so badly that she had to return to base. (Dave Shirlaw)
V-Mail, never heard of it before.
"The Nazis' genocidal policies in Eastern Europe involved more than just killing the people occupying Germany's "living space."
In addition, tens of thousands of Germans emigrated to the newly conquered territories in order to make the lands the province of the German Volk (people).
This illustration refers to the forced emigration of Poles who had to leave to make room for the Germans.
The text reads: "Step by step the arrival [of German immigrants] follows the migration [of the Poles].
The Resettlement division of the Security Police prohibits any cessation of work within one's area of activity.""
"Anna Wachalska, a gentile, lived in Warsaw at the time of the German invasion.
She aided the Jewish Resistance throughout the Nazi occupation, even going so far as to give the identity of her deceased daughter, Stanislawa, to a young Jewish woman.
Wachalska also worked closely with the Polish Socialist resistance, providing a link between it and the Jews of Warsaw.
After the war she was named "Righteous Among the Nations" by the Yad Vashem."
What I learned from this article is that the V-Mail went both ways. I only have my father’s side of the correspondence since none of the letters sent to him survived the war. I never thought about it before but it makes sense since there was as much out-going mail as in-coming.