Skip to comments.RUSSIANS DRIVE AHEAD IN UKRAINE; MUSSOLINI OUSTS CIANO, 10 OTHERS (2/6/43)
Posted on 02/06/2013 5:43:07 AM PST by Homer_J_Simpson
#1 - There Are Such Things - Tommy Dorsey, with Frank Sinatra and the Pied Pipers
#2 - I Had the Craziest Dream - Harry James, with Helen Forrest
#3 - Moonlight Becomes You - Bing Crosby
#4 Brazil - Xavier Cugat
#5 - Why Dont You Do Right - Benny Goodman, with Peggy Lee
#6 Why Dont You Fall in Love with Me, Dinah Shore
#7 - Moonlight Becomes You - Glenn Miller, with Skip Nelson and the Modernaires
#8 - Ive Heard That Song Before Harry James, with Helen Forrest
#9 When the Lights Go On Again All Over the World - Vaughn Monroe
#10 - Juke Box Saturday Night - Glenn Miller, with Ray Eberly and the Modernaires
Red Army forces cross the Donets River
Saturday, February 6, 1943 www.onwar.com
Soviet tanks carry infantry into battle [photo at link]
On the Eastern Front... In the Caucasus the Soviets reach Bataysk, south of Rostov, and capture Yeysk on the Sea of Azov. On the Donets River, Lisichansk is occupied and Red Army forces cross the river further upstream at Izyum, reaching Barvenkovo.
From Washington... The American command in Europe and North Africa is restructured. General Andrews is appointed to the new European Theater Command and General Eisenhower remains in command in North Africa.
In Berlin... Manstein, commanding Army Group Don on the Eastern Front, flies to see Hitler about getting approval for a retreat behind the Mius River.
February 6th, 1943
UNITED KINGDOM: Frigate HMS Helford launched. (Dave Shirlaw)
GERMANY: Rastenburg: Hitler privately admits blame for the defeat at Stalingrad.
Hitler, infuriated by the continual Soviet advance in southern Russia, had Field Marshal von Manstein flown to his “Wolf’s Lair” headquarters in East Prussia today. It was his intention to refuse von Manstein permission to make any more withdrawals, but military reality and the shock of Stalingrad have forced him to allow von Manstein to fall back from the Donets to the river Mius, leaving only a rearguard to cover Rostov-on-Don.
The fall of Rostov, which is now imminent, means that the Seventeenth Army, left behind by von Kleist in his retreat from the Caucasus, is now confined to the “Gothic Line” positions around the Taman peninsula between the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov.
Hitler plans to use this army as the springboard for another attack on the Caucasus, but Stalin plans to treat it as he did the Sixth Army in Stalingrad. Two days ago Soviet amphibious forces landed on the peninsula to cut the Germans off from the Crimea. But the Seventeenth Army had been listening to Soviet radio and knew that the assault was coming. They slaughtered the Russians as they were coming ashore at two of their landing beaches; but another force, put ashore at Novorossiisk, has dug in and is expanding its beach-head.
Meanwhile, General Malinovsky is racing on from the Donets, forcing von Manstein back to Taganrog and the Mius even without Hitler’s permission. The Russians now seem poised to take the whole of the Donets basin. It is the same story further north where Hitler has been forced to give General von Kluge, the commander of Army Group Centre, permission to abandon the vulnerable Rzhev salient. Von Kluge now seems likely to lose Kursk in the next few days.
There is one city that Hitler has ordered to be held at all costs: Kharkov, the fourth largest city in the Soviet Union. The newly-formed SS Panzer Korps has been ordered to defend it to the death.
Berlin: Himmler receives an inventory of goods taken from murdered Polish Jews, including 825 rail wagons of clothing for redistribution in Germany and a wagon full of women’s hair.
Rastenburg: The official three days of mourning for Stalingrad ordered by Hitler are over, but it is doubtful if the German people will ever recover from that terrible defeat. They still cannot come to terms with the crushing of the Wehrmacht by the Untermenschen [subhumans] of Russia.
Hitler has added to the shock felt in the higher echelons of the Nazi Party by telling a group of Gauleiters here at his “Wolf’s Lair” “What you are witnessing is a catastrophe of unheard-of magnitude ... If the German people fails then it does not deserve that we should fight for its future; then we can write it off with equanimity.”
General Dietmar, Germany’s chief military commentator, echoed Hitler’s doom-laden message in an extraordinary broadcast from Berlin last night in which he said: “The bitter experience of Stalingrad still weighs heavily on our souls. For the first time we are experiencing the entire tragedy of the reverse. For the first time an entire German army has ceased to exist.”
“What we used to inflict on the others has happened to us. We have been encircled, attacked from all directions, compressed into a narrow space, split up into pockets. It is still difficult to realize. We feel it like a sharp physical pain.”
Even more painful for the hundreds of thousands of German families are the last letters from fathers, sons and brothers killed in the final days of the debacle or marched off across the steppes into captivity by the Russians.
The tale of horror told in these letters and the longing for home which permeate them contrast sadly with the bombastic broadcast of Göring in which he boasted “in spite of everything Germany’s ultimate victory was decided there.”
In the midst of all the sorrow there is a threat. Goebbels is invoking an old Prussian war decree of 1689 which says: “Whoever, in the midst of battle, begins to retreat, shall be put to death without mercy.”
U-481, U-1131, U-1195 laid down.
U-426, U-427 launched.
U-389, U-841 commissioned. (Dave Shirlaw)
ALGERIA: Whilst escorting convoy KMS.8 from Gibraltar to Bone, Flower class corvette HMCS Louisberg is sunk by an Italian torpedo-bomber 60 miles N of Oran at 36 15N 00 15E. The convoy came under attack by German and Italian bombers and torpedo-bombers as it move eastward towards Sicily and away from Gibraltar-based fighter cover. At 19 -00, several enemy aircraft converged on the convoy from different directions and executed an aggressive low-level bombing attack. A few minutes later, five Italian torpedo-bombers swept in from ahead of the convoy and launched their weapons. Louisburg, who was stained in the van, was hit at 19 -10 by a torpedo that struck her on the port side amidships. The torpedo was dropped at such short range that there was no time to take evasive action. The attacking aircraft was hit and flew off trailing smoke but did not crash. The explosion of the torpedo killed the entire engine room staff. The order “Abandon Ship” was given immediately and the ship sank within three minutes. Louisburg sank with the loss of 42 crewmembers (two officers, 35 ratings, five RN), including the Commanding Officer. The rest are rescued by HMS Lookout. The majority of casualties were caused by the detonation of her own depth charges as the ship went down so quickly that there was no opportunity to set them to “Safe”. Louisburg was a Flower-class corvette (1939-40 Program) built by Morton Engineering and Drydock Company, at Quebec City,, Province of Quebec. She was commissioned on 02 Oct 41 and arrived in Halifax on 15 Oct. Louisburg was assigned to the Sydney Force and then was transferred to Newfoundland Command, where she had an active career. She was assigned to Operation Torch and deployed to the UK. After a refit for additional AA weapons, she was rammed by the Shoreham-class sloop HMS Bideford, which necessitated five weeks of repairs in Belfast. As soon as repairs were completed, she deployed to the Mediterranean. Louisburg was sunk soon after resuming operations. (Alex Gordon)(108)
NEW GUINEA: Australian reinforcements arrive at Wau; above them, 37 Allied fighters shoot down 26 out of 70 Japanese raiders.
U.S.A.: In an opinion poll released today the American public were asked:
If Hitler offered peace terms now to all countries on the basis of not going further, but of leaving matters as they are now, would you favor or oppose such a plan?
Oppose 92 %
No Opinion 4%
Washington: The US High Command is restructured, creating a European theatre under General Andrews and leaving General Eisenhower in charge of North Africa.
The European Theater of Operations, United States Army (ETOUSA) had been established on 8 June 1942 by presidential directive to command all U.S. Army personnel in Europe and Africa. Major General Dwight D. Eisenhower had been named Commanding General ETOUSA during the same month.
Recognizing the importance of the North African operations, the formal separation of operations in England and Africa is finalized as the North African Theater of Operations, United States Army (NATOUSA) is established today with Lieutenant General Eisenhower in command; NATOUSA is responsible for all U.S. Army personnel in North Africa. The U.S. Army Air Forces’ Lieutenant General Frank M. Andrews, currently Commanding General U.S. Army Forces in the Middle East, is named to replace “Ike” as Commanding General ETOUSA, which now controls all U.S. Army forces in the U.K., Iceland and Greenland. (Jack McKillop)
Los Angeles: A jury acquits actor Errol Flynn of three counts of statutory rape. (Drew Halevy)
Flynn was charged with the statutory rape of two teenage girls aboard his yacht. The publicity resulted in the catch phrase “In like Flynn.” (Jack McKillop)
Destroyer escort USS Doherty commissioned.
Destroyer escorts USS Bostwick, George W Ingram, Howard D Crow and Pettit laid down.
Light cruiser USS Pasadena laid down.
Escort carrier USS Wake Island laid down.
Destroyer escort USS Reuben James and Sims launched.
Destroyer USS Dashiell launched.
Minesweepers USS Concise and Salute launched.
SS Zagloba sunk by U-262 at 56.32N, 16W.
At 1917, SS Polyktor was torpedoed by U-266 and sank after two coups de grâce at 1930 and 1932. The ship was straggling from Convoy SC-118 due to problems with the rudder. Two survivors were taken prisoner. (Dave Shirlaw)
"The inhumane living conditions created in the Polish ghettos and German concentration camps provoked some Jews to fight over crumbs of food and scraps of wood for heating.
Here, Jews in Lódz battle for a few bits of wood.
The dehumanization of European Jewry produced heart-wrenching incidents that would be unimaginable under normal conditions.
Survivor/author Elie Wiesel relates the story of a boy who beat his father to death to secure a crust of bread."
"Standing before the annual general assembly, Ottó Komoly, president of the Zionist Federation, addresses the group in Budapest, Hungary.
Komoly's most important role began in 1943, when he became one of the leaders of the effort to rescue Jews still alive in Poland and smuggle them to relative safety in Hungary.
Although the German occupation brought those efforts to an end, Komoly's rescue work continued.
He strove to save the Jews of Budapest from the Nazis and from fanatical members of Hungary's Fascist Arrow Cross Party."
The Sov’s are about to reconquer the Donbass, at the time one of the most important industrial regions of Russia and Ukraine.
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