Skip to comments.CATANIA BATTLE RAGES, ALLIES NEAR ENNA; RUSSIANS PRESS ON OREL, STRIKE IN SOUTH (7/21/43)
Posted on 07/21/2013 5:42:02 AM PDT by Homer_J_Simpson
Red Army attacks in Orel salient
Wednesday, July 21, 1943 www.onwar.com
On the Eastern Front... Soviet forces capture Bolkhov in the Orel offensive.
In Sicily... The Allied advances continue. The British capture Gerbini, the Canadians take Leonforte and the Americans occupy Corleone and Castelvetrano.
In Italy... The Italian naval base at Crotone is bombarded.
In the Solomon Islands... A small American force lands on Vella Lavella to determine whether significant forces can be landed there, by-passing the Japanese stronghold of Kolombangara. On New Georgia, Griswald plans an new offensive.
July 21st, 1943 (WEDNESDAY)
UNITED KINGDOM: Frigate HMS Retalick laid down.
U-779 laid down.
SICILY: US Rangers seize Castelvetrano and the airport; the US 82d Airborne Division takes San Margherita and the US 3d Infantry Division takes Corleone; the US 45th Infantry Division, pushing northwest, takes Valledolmo; and the US lst Infantry Division clears Alimena.
In the British 30 Corps area, the Canadian 1 Division takes Leonforte and the British take Leonforte.
During the night, Northwest African Tactical Air Force light bombers hit motor transport convoys in the Randazzo, Sicily area. This area is again hit during the day by about 20 Ninth Air Force B-25 Mitchells.
The Allies claim 40,000 prisoners, and that they control half the island.
During the night of 20/21 July, Wellingtons of the Northwest African Strategic Air Force (NASAF) hit Crotone Airfield and the Naples marshalling yard. During the day, NASAF B-17 Flying Fortresses bomb Grosseto Airfield.
U.S.S.R.: A Free Germany Committee is formed. (Glenn Steinberg)
GREECE: Field Marshal Erwin Rommel is on an inspection of German defenses in Greece. (Glenn Steinberg)
SOLOMON ISLANDS: In a series of sorties in support of ground forces on New Georgia Island, 22 B-25’s, 50+ USAAF and US Navy fighters, and 170+ US Navy dive bombers blast positions in the Bairoko area; 135 tons of bombs are dropped. About 60+ IJN aircraft targets in the Rendova area minutes after the last Allied aircraft leaves the area.
ELLICE ISLANDS: Japanese G3M “Nells” again attack the U.S. airfield on Funafuti Island, Ellice Islands.
CANADA: Trawler HMS Anticosti completed refit Louisbourg, Nova Scotia.
Corvette HMCS The Pas collided with SS Medina while escorting ON 192 with two killed.
Trawler HMS Anticosti completed refit Louisbourg, Nova Scotia.
TERRITORY OF ALASKA: ALEUTIAN ISLANDS: - Nine Eleventh Air Force B-24s bomb Kiska Island targets, including the runway, North Head, and Main Camp area where fires are observed. Poor weather cancels other scheduled missions.
Two USN destroyers bombard Japanese positions in the Gertrude Cove area of Kiska Island.
- A Japanese task force consisting of 3 light cruisers, 10 destroyers, 1 escort ship and a tanker, depart Paramushiru Island in the Kurile Island enroute to Kiska Island to evacuate the Japanese garrison. This must be the last attempt due to a shortage of fuel for the ships.
Destroyer escort USS Herbert C Jones commissioned.
Minesweeper USS Revenge commissioned.
Destroyer escorts USS Currier and McClelland laid down.
ATLANTIC OCEAN: German submarine U-662 (Type VIIC) is sunk in the South Atlantic in the Amazon Estuary, in position 03.56N, 48.46W, by depth charges from a PBY-5A Catalina of US Navy Patrol Squadron Ninety Four (VP-94) based at NAF Belem, Brazil. Only 3 of the 47 sailors on the submarine survive; the PBY crew drops life rafts for them and they are picked up by PC-494 after 17 days.
Over a period of only few days this boat had been attacked by a USAAF B-24 Liberator while hunting convoy TF.2. Then came an attack by a B-18 aircraft and finally squadron’s VP-94 Catalinas located the boat and after one unsuccessful attack another VP-94 aircraft managed to sink the persistent boat. (Jack McKillop and Alex Gordon)
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