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Posts Categorized: Today WWII History

Today in World War II History—June 9, 1943

US Navy pilot Lt. George H.W. Bush, WWII (US Navy photo)

75 Years Ago—June 9, 1943: US 11th Naval District declares Los Angeles off-limits to servicemen, ending the Zoot Suit Riots (attacks by servicemen on Mexican-Americans). Future president George H.W. Bush commissioned as an ensign in the US Naval Reserves, age 18, the youngest US naval aviator in history.

Today in World War II History—June 8, 1943

US poster for the Victory Home campaign, WWII

75 Years Ago—June 8, 1943: US begins the “Victory Home” campaign to encourage rationing, scrap collection, and other patriotic wartime activities. Los Angeles City Council bans wearing of zoot suits favored by Mexican-Americans in effort to stop Zoot Suit Riots (attacks by servicemen on Latino youths). Japanese battleship Mutsu is sunk in accidental explosion at… Read more »

Today in World War II History—June 7, 1943

US poster urging more P-38 Lightning production, WWII

75 Years Ago—June 7, 1943: Australia begins butter rationing (1 lb/2 weeks). Off Guadalcanal, US Thirteenth Air Force, US Navy, US Marine Corps, and Royal New Zealand Air Force planes shoot down 23 Japanese aircraft

Today in World War II History—June 6, 1943

US pilots training to fly the North American A-36A Apache, Louisiana, 1943 (US Army Air Force photo)

75 Years Ago—June 6, 1943: North American A-36 Apache (fighter-bomber version of the P-51 Mustang) flies first combat mission in US Twelfth Air Force mission to Pantelleria in the Mediterranean. Future actor Paul Newman enlists in US Navy, age 18.

Today in World War II History—June 5, 1943

Cpl. Irwin Goldstein sets switches on one of the ENIAC's function tables at the Moore School of Electrical Engineering, University of Pennsylvania, 1946 (US Army photo)

75 Years Ago—June 5, 1943: Aircraft from escort carrier USS Bogue sink German U-boat U-217 in the mid-Atlantic. US Army signs contract with the University of Pennsylvania to develop the first all-electronic computer, ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer).

Today in World War II History—June 4, 1943

US poster for United China Relief, WWII

75 Years Ago—June 4, 1943: Luftwaffe bombs Gorky, Russia in first German strategic air raid against Soviet industrial centers. Chinese launch assault against Japanese in the Hubei-Hunan region of China.

Today in World War II History—June 3, 1943

Soldier inspecting zoot suits at the Uline Arena, Washington DC, 1942 (Library of Congress)

75 Years Ago—June 3, 1943: Zoot Suit Riots begin—US Navy sailors and Mexican-Americans scuffle in Los Angeles, as servicemen resent flamboyant “unpatriotic” clothing of Latino youth; over the next several days over 150 people will be injured. French Committee for National Liberation formed in Algiers, Algeria, under joint leadership of former rivals Generals Charles de… Read more »

Today in World War II History—June 2, 1943

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—June 2, 1943: Combat debut of US 99th Fighter Squadron, the first African-American squadron (“Tuskegee Airmen”), in Twelfth Air Force mission from Tunisia to island of Pantelleria.

Today in World War II History—June 1, 1943

Publicity photo of Leslie Howard for Gone with the Wind, 1939 (public domain via Wikipedia)

75 Years Ago—June 1, 1943: British actor Leslie Howard (Gone With the Wind) is killed when a German Ju 88 shoots down his DC-3 airliner flying from Portugal to England. Col. Florence Blanchfield becomes superintendent of the US Army Nurse Corps. Frank Sinatra signs with Columbia Records as a solo artist.

Today in World War II History—May 31, 1943

Allied air raid on Pantelleria Island in the Mediterranean, May-June 1943 (US Army Air Force photo)

75 Years Ago—May 31, 1943: British ships begin naval bombardment of Pantelleria between Tunisia and Sicily, adding to the aerial bombardment started May 18. Movie premiere of Cole Porter musical Du Barry Was a Lady, starring Red Skelton, Lucille Ball, Virginia O’Brien, and Gene Kelly. “Archie” comics first broadcast on radio.