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Today in World War II History—Aug. 9, 1940 & 1945

Mushroom cloud over Nagasaki, Japan, 9 Aug 1945 (US National Archives: 535795)

Mushroom cloud over Nagasaki, Japan, 9 Aug 1945 (US National Archives: 535795)

80 Years Ago—Aug. 9, 1940: Hermann Göring orders Luftwaffe to destroy RAF fields, control centers, and radar.

In past month the RAF has lost 84 fighters, while the Luftwaffe has lost 227 aircraft.

Romania passes antisemitic laws, bans marriage between Christians and Jews, bans Jewish and mixed-race children from state schools, and bans Jews from public or military service.

75 Years Ago—Aug. 9, 1945: Atomic bomb is dropped on Nagasaki by US B-29 Bock’s Car, flown by Maj. Charles Sweeney; about 35,000 killed.

Soviets invade Japanese-occupied Manchuria with 1.5 million soldiers.

Last Victoria Cross of war is awarded posthumously to Canadian Corsair pilot Lt. Robert Hampton Gray for sinking Japanese destroyer Amakusa off Honshu.