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Today in World War II History—Feb. 2, 1944

Remains of Italian barracks near Cassino, Italy, February 1944 (US Army Center of Military History)

Remains of Italian barracks near Cassino, Italy, February 1944 (US Army Center of Military History)

75 Years Ago—Feb. 2, 1944: Soviets enter German-occupied Estonia.

In Italy, US II Corps enters outskirts of Cassino town and takes Italian barracks area at Montevilla.

Today in World War II History—Feb. 1, 1944

Gen. Omar Bradley, Adm. Bertram Ramsay, Air Chief Marshal Arthur Tedder, Gen. Dwight Eisenhower, Gen. Bernard Montgomery, Air Chief Marshal Trafford Leigh-Mallory, and Gen. Walter Bedell Smith at a SHAEF conference in London, England, 1 Feb 1944 (Imperial War Museum TR 1541)

Gen. Omar Bradley, Adm. Bertram Ramsay, Air Chief Marshal Arthur Tedder, Gen. Dwight Eisenhower, Gen. Bernard Montgomery, Air Chief Marshal Trafford Leigh-Mallory, and Gen. Walter Bedell Smith at a SHAEF conference in London, England, 1 Feb 1944 (Imperial War Museum TR 1541)

US landing craft approaching Namur, 1 February 1944 (US Army Center of Military History)

US landing craft approaching Namur, 1 February 1944 (US Army Center of Military History)

75 Years Ago—Feb. 1, 1944: Countdown to D-Day: Allied leaders issue Neptune Initial Joint Plan for D-day, including a 5-division front.

US Marines land on Roi & Namur in Kwajalein Atoll in Marshall Islands.

Article by Oswald Avery, Colin MacLeod, and Maclyn McCarty published in Journal of Experimental Medicine identifies the “transforming factor” as deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA).

Today in World War II History—Jan. 31, 1944

US Army troops land at Kwajalein, Marshall Islands, 31 Jan 1944 (US National Archives)

US Army troops land at Kwajalein, Marshall Islands, 31 Jan 1944 (US National Archives)

75 Years Ago—Jan. 31, 1944: US Army and Marines land on Kwajalein & Majuro in the Marshall Islands—the first use of the DUKW and of underwater demolition teams in the Pacific.

Today in World War II History—Jan. 30, 1944

Soldiers of the US 3rd Ranger Battalion board LCIs bound for Anzio; two weeks later, nearly all will be killed or captured at Cisterna (US Army Photograph)

Soldiers of the US 3rd Ranger Battalion board LCIs bound for Anzio; two weeks later, nearly all will be killed or captured at Cisterna (US Army Photograph)

75 Years Ago—Jan. 30, 1944: At Anzio, the Allies resume the offensive, but find the Germans fortified and reinforced.

At Anzio, US 1st & 3rd Ranger Battalions assault Cisterna and are almost wiped out when surrounded by elite Hermann Göring Division (of 767 Rangers, only 6 are not killed or captured).

Today in World War II History—Jan. 29, 1944

Battleship USS Missouri firing a salvo, Aug 1944 (US National Archives)

Battleship USS Missouri firing a salvo, Aug 1944 (US National Archives)

75 Years Ago—Jan. 29, 1944: USS Missouri is launched at New York Navy Yard, the US Navy’s last battleship, christened by Margaret Truman, daughter of Sen. Harry Truman (currently a museum ship at Pearl Harbor, HI).

Guns of the battleship USS Missouri keeping watch over the USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor, HI, November 2016 (Photo: Sarah Sundin)

Guns of the battleship USS Missouri keeping watch over the USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor, HI, November 2016 (Photo: Sarah Sundin)

Today in World War II History—Jan. 28, 1944

Men of the US 99th Fighter Squadron (“Tuskegee Airmen”) and a P-40 fighter in North Africa, 1943 (US Air Force photo)

Men of the US 99th Fighter Squadron (“Tuskegee Airmen”) and a P-40 fighter in North Africa, 1943 (US Air Force photo)

75 Years Ago—Jan. 28, 1944: Over Anzio, the US 99th Fighter Squadron (Tuskegee Airmen) in P-40s shoots down 4 German Fw 190 fighter planes—the previous day they shot down 8 Fw 190s.

Today in World War II History—Jan. 27, 1944

Soviet troops fighting in Pushkin district of Leningrad, Russia, 2 Jan 1944 (Russian International News Agency image #309/Boris Kudoyarov)

Soviet troops fighting in Pushkin district of Leningrad, Russia, 2 Jan 1944 (Russian International News Agency image #309/Boris Kudoyarov)

75 Years Ago—Jan. 27, 1944: Soviets break siege of Leningrad after 872 days and 1.5 million deaths.

Lt. Gen. Omar Bradley succeeds Lt. Gen. George Grunert over US First Army, which is preparing for Operation Overlord (D-day).

Lt. Gen. Omar Bradley, circa 1944 (US Army photo)

Lt. Gen. Omar Bradley, circa 1944 (US Army photo)

Today in World War II History—Jan. 26, 1944

LSTs landing US troops at Anzio, 22 January 1944 (US Army Center of Military History)

LSTs landing US troops at Anzio, 22 January 1944 (US Army Center of Military History)

75 Years Ago—Jan. 26, 1944: British landing ship LST-422 damaged by a mine off Anzio; of 700 aboard, 454 US soldiers & 29 British sailors killed.

Allied ships are ordered to withdraw from the Anzio beachhead to reduce risk from air raids.

Argentina severs relations with Germany and Japan after a vast Axis spy ring is uncovered in the country.

Today in World War II History—Jan. 25, 1944

Soviet tank assault force on a T-26 light tank in the Korsun area, 1944 (Russian International News Agency image #606710/I. Ozerskij/CC-BY-SA 3.0)

Soviet tank assault force on a T-26 light tank in the Korsun area, 1944 (Russian International News Agency image #606710/I. Ozerskij/CC-BY-SA 3.0)

75 Years Ago—Jan. 25, 1944: Soviets surround 60,000 German troops in Korsun-Cherkassy pocket in Ukraine.

US II Corps successfully crosses the Rapido River north of Cassino in Italy.

The Cassino area of Italy, WWII (US Army Center of Military History)

The Cassino area of Italy, WWII (US Army Center of Military History)

Today in World War II History—Jan. 24, 1944

Anzio town, looking south toward Nettuno (US Army Center of Military History)

Anzio town, looking south toward Nettuno (US Army Center of Military History)

75 Years Ago—Jan. 24, 1944: German bombers sink British hospital ship St. David off Anzio with Hs-293 guided missile; 96 killed, including 2 British nurses.

The US 93rd Evacuation Hospital opens in Anzio and is hit by German shells, injuring a sergeant, the first of many casualties in the Anzio hospitals.