Skip to comments.18 ARE REPORTED KILLED, SCORES INJURED IN WRECK OF JERSEY EXPRESS TRAIN (5/24/43)
Posted on 05/24/2013 6:11:12 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson
* First of a seven-part series on the 164th Infantry on Guadalcanal.
Germans in the Kuban fighting back
Monday, May 24, 1943 www.onwar.com
German machinegunner provides covering fire [photo at link].
On the Eastern Front... In the Caucasus, the German 17th Army continues to counterattack. Soviet forces continue to hold the offensive.
In the Aleutian Islands... On Attu American forces make some progress along the Clevesy Pass. There is heavy fighting over Fish Hook Ridge.
In the United States... Mississippi river flooding continues. In total, 150,000 people become homeless.
In Washington... The Trident Conference continues.
May 24th, 1943 (MONDAY)
UNITED KINGDOM: While Winston Churchill personifies Britain’s bulldog spirit to the outside world, it is Ernest Bevin who dominates the war effort at home. As minister of labour he has powers to mobilize and direct labour which are the most far-reaching ever given to a minister in Britain. He can determine the occupation of every adult between 14 and 65, and direct them to any part of the country. So far Bevin has used his powers lightly. There are nearly 23 million people in full-time work or service, and only 400,000 orders directing people to work have been made.
As the former leader of the Transport and General Workers’ Union, Mr. Bevin’s style is always direct and down-to-earth. During a labour dispute in Liverpool he told the dockers: “It is criminal to stop work at this moment. You must not do it. I say to every one of my own people, whom I have worked for all my life, there will plenty of time - hundreds of years - to go in for strikes after this, but now let us get on with it. You are not doing as well as you ought to be.”
This month he warned that coal production will not meet the national requirements this year: “It may be necessary to put entry into the mines on the same footing as service in the forces.”
Frigate HMS Byron laid down.
Submarine HMS Turpin laid down.
Minesweeper HMS Magic launched. (Dave Shirlaw)
POLAND: Auschwitz: SS Captain Dr Josef Mengele takes up the post of camp doctor.
TERRITORY OF ALASKA: On Attu Island in the Aleutian Islands, the Americans launch another attack on Fishhook Ridge in the morning but the Japanese repel the attackers.
Two of three air-ground support missions to Attu, together with six B-24 Liberators, eleven B-25 Mitchells and on F-5A Lightning, bomb Attu. A third mission is cancelled, except for two B-25s which do not hear the recall order. Three other B-24s and 14 P-38s fly three more air cover missions over Attu but make no contacts. (Jack McKillop)
Destroyer USS Barton laid down.
Destroyer escorts USS Crowley, Falgout, Lowe, and Rall laid down.
Destroyer USS Barton laid down.
Minesweepers USS Gadwall, Recruit, Skurry and Spectacle laid down.
Destroyer escort USS Ramsden launched.
Submarines USS Bluefish and Cabrilla commissioned.
Aircraft carrier USS Bunker Hill commissioned.
ATLANTIC OCEAN: Grand Admiral Dönitz tonight withdrew his U-boats from the North Atlantic. Earlier in the day he had told U-boat commanders: “Only you can fight the enemy offensively and beat him ... the German nation has long felt that our arm is the sharpest and most decisive and that the outcome of the war depends on the success of failure of the BATTLE OF THE ATLANTIC.”
As the day wore on Dönitz absorbed yesterday’s news that two more U-boats had been sunk while attacking the convoy HX-239. That brought the month’s losses up to 33, but , worse than that, increasingly they were failing to get through the escorts. Just five days ago a pack of 33 U-boats attacked SC-130 and failed to sink a single ship.
No fewer than five of the pack were sunk. One boat, U-954 sunk by a Coastal Command Liberator of 120 Squadron, took all hands to the bottom, including the grand admiral’s 21-year-old son, Peter. Although he showed no emotion when told of his personal loss, Dönitz could not ignore the growing evidence that the two year battle to rupture the Allies’ ocean supply lines was being lost. Radar and the increasing successes in breaking the Enigma codes have made the U-boats more vulnerable to the escorts. Equally, the escorts have been growing in power and effectiveness. Escort carriers, both British and American, have increased the extent of the routes which can be offered air support. And more effective anti-submarine weapons like the Hedgehog and the Squid have been introduced.
The plain fact is that more U-boats have been operating here than at any time during the war, but the score of successful sinkings has been rapidly declining. With the month almost over, the Allies have lost less than one-third as much shipping as the 476,000 tons North Atlantic losses in March.
By tonight the U-boats were moving to the South Atlantic to take up positions south of the Azores. A few remain to convince the Allies that the convoys are still in danger. They hope to tie up as many Allied escort ships as possible here for as long as they can.
U-441 shot down an RAF 228 Sqn Sunderland. First success of the Flak boats
U-594 shot down an RAF 228 Sqn Sunderland. The entire aircrew was lost. (Dave Shirlaw)
"A group of elderly Sephardic Jews gathers in the Jewish Quarter of Salonika, Greece.
Such religious and social occasions would soon come to an end, as the Nazis began to enforce severe restrictions in 1943.
The first deportations to Auschwitz followed in mid-March. By mid-August nearly 50,000 Jews had been sent to Auschwitz and Treblinka, with almost 80 percent killed there.
Italian efforts to save Salonika's Jews were largely ineffectual; most of the Jews who avoided deportation did so only because they held passports issued earlier by Turkey, Italy, and a few other nations."
During the war years there was a large increase in railroad wrecks as a result.
It is becoming more and more clear in the news reports that the power of the Allied forces is growing stronger and stronger. The Battle of the Atlantic is lost. The Axis have been driven from North Africa. Italy appears almost defenseless against the allied air onslaught, and the Italian armed forces and people have no stomach for the war. The Japanese are being ground down in slow but steady progress. All is still quiet on the Eastern Front, but the Germans clearly lost a lot of combat power there over the winter. The fact they have not attacked anywhere yet is a confession that they have relinquished the strategic initiative there. The Soviets have not yet seized it themselves.
Even though there is something of a pause in military operations, I get the sense that the crisis is over and the allies no longer fear defeat.
Some interesting items unimaginable now. First, a reporter freely refers to Allied resistance in the Balkans as “terrorism.” Second, an American cardinal celebrating a mass in Iran.
If I were to be injured in a train accident, I don’t think I would want to be taken to a “Homeopathic Hospital”.
The sentence is a bit complex, and the references vague:
As I read this, the term "Patriot activity" reflects the reporter's point of view, while the term "foreign military circles in Turkey" refers to German liaison officers.
This is important because Churchill's "bodyguard of lies" was working to convince Germans that the next Allied invasion would land somewhere -- anywhere! -- other than Sicily. ;-)