75 Years Ago—Aug. 20, 1943: In battle near Kharkov, Ukraine, Germans defeat Soviets and destroy 184 tanks.
Posts Categorized: Today WWII History
75 Years Ago—Aug. 19, 1943: Australians take Mt. Tambu and Komiatum Ridge, New Guinea after a month of fighting. First Wasps (Women’s Airforce Service Pilots) are assigned to US Troop Carrier Command.
75 Years Ago—Aug. 18, 1943: Luftwaffe chief of staff Hans Jeschonnek commits suicide after previous day’s RAF raid on Peenemünde and US Eighth Air Force raids on Schweinfurt and Regensburg. Army Air Force barrage balloon battalions are inactivated in US.
75 Years Ago—Aug. 17, 1943: US Seventh Army takes Messina, and Allies secure Sicily, taking 160,000 POWs. US Eighth Air Force sends 376 B-17 & B-24 bombers to Schweinfurt and Regensburg in Germany; 60 bombers are lost. RAF sends 596 bombers to Peenemünde, Germany, bombing rocket installations for the first time.
75 Years Ago—Aug. 16, 1943: As US and British forces converge on Messina, Sicily, US artillery first fires at Italian mainland. US B-17 Flying Fortress bombers fly final mission in Southwest Pacific; US P-47 Thunderbolt fighters fly first mission in Southwest Pacific.
75 Years Ago—Aug. 15, 1943: First island-hopping: US Army & Marines land on Vella Lavella in the Solomons, bypassing Kolombangara. US and Canadian forces land on Kiska in the Aleutians and find the Japanese had left 2 weeks before.
75 Years Ago—Aug. 14, 1943: Quadrant Conference opens in Québec: Roosevelt and Churchill commit to landings in Normandy in 1944. Under Eisenhower’s orders, Gen. George Patton apologizes to the soldiers he slapped. US changes insignia for military aircraft: border of bars switched from red to dark blue. “Big Inch” pipeline is completed, transporting crude oil… Read more »
75 Years Ago—Aug. 13, 1943: US Army 10th Engineer Battalion builds “bridge in the sky” along a steep seaside cliff at Cape Calava, Sicily. Future evangelist and recent Wheaton College graduate Billy Graham marries Ruth Bell.
75 Years Ago—Aug. 12, 1943: Movie premiere of Irving Berlin’s This Is the Army at Warner’s Earle Theater, Washington, DC, starring George Murphy, Joan Leslie & Ronald Reagan.
75 Years Ago—Aug. 11, 1943: Germans and Italians begin the successful evacuation of 100,000 soldiers from Sicily to mainland Italy. US Seventh Army makes amphibious landings at Brolo on Sicily’s north shore, but fails to cut off German retreat. Movie premiere of Heaven Can Wait, starring Gene Tierney & Don Ameche.