Wednesday, June 12, 2024

80 Years Ago, Monday 12 June 1944

USN

Pacific

Planes from 15 carriers (CV-and CVL) of TF 58 (Vice Admiral Marc A. Mitscher) work over Japanese air facilities and coast defenses on Saipan, Tinian, Guam, Rota, and Pagan Islands, Marianas. Carrier strikes are repeated on 13 and14 June in preparation for the landings on Saipan. Aircraft from carrier Essex (CV-9) and small carriers Langley (CVL-27) and Cowpens (CVL- 25) (TG 58.4) smash Japanese convoy (which had sailed from Tanapag harbor for Japan the previous day) northwest of Saipan, sinking torpedo boat Otori, 17°32'N, 144°00'E, auxiliary netlayer Kokku Maru, 17°32'N, 144°01'E, transports Batavia Maru, 17°32'N, 143°17'E, Hinko Maru, 17°28'N, 144°19'E, Kamishima Maru and Imizu Maru, 17°32'N, 144°10'E, Nitcho Maru, 17°32'N, 143°10'E, Reikai Maru, 17°30'N, 144°00'E, and Tenryugawa Maru, 17°32'N, 144°01'E, cargo ship Bokuyo Maru, army cargo ships Fukoku Maru and Moji Maru, and merchant vessel Tsushima Maru; and damaging transport Tatsutakawa Maru (see 15 June 1944), Coast Defense Vessel No.4, 17°20'N, 144°10'E, submarine chaser Ch 50, 17°32'N, 144°10', and submarine chasers Ch 33 and Ch 51, auxiliary submarine chaser Cha 20 and auxiliary minesweeper Wa 6.15 Japanese minelayer Nichiyu Maru [torpedoed by submarine Halibut (SS-232) on 3 March 1943] is further damaged by carrier planes in Apra Harbor.

Destroyer Kalk (DD-611) is damaged by horizontal bomber off western New Guinea, 01°19'S, 136°19'E.

British submarine HMS Stoic attacks Japanese convoy, and sinks transport Kainan Maru off Phuket, Siam, 07°54'N,98°27'E

AAF

Eighth AF

With bad weather over top priority targets in Germany, Heavy Bomber efforts are directed against airfields and landing grounds in NE France and rail and road bridges on the Brest Peninsula. 1,278 Heavy Bombers, including 25 Pathfinders, drop 3,295 tons of bombs on 22 of the primary targets and on secondary and targets of opportunity. 8 Heavy Bombers are lost, mostly to ground fire. VIII FC furnishes support for Heavy Bomber missions and Ninth AF Medium Bombers, and attacks enemy communications and troop movements. Fighters damage MARSHALLING YARDs at Juvisy-sur-Orge and Melun and several freight trains, and destroy 108 locomotives, train cars, trucks, tanks, and other vehicles. One group of P-47’s is attacked by 50 German fighters in a fierce battle, 8 P-47’s and 5 Me-109’s being shot down. During the day VIII FC flies 1,002 sorties and claims 26 aircraft destroyed. Losses total 17.

Ninth AF

509 B-26’s and A-20’s bomb marshalling yards, road and rail junctions, bridges, arty, town areas, troop concentrations, and various Targets of opportunity in France. Aircraft of more than 15 fighter groups fly close and area support for bombers and bomb and strafe rail lines, gun batteries, bridges, fortifications, radar installation, tanks, ammo dumps, town areas and strong points in battle area of France.

Twelfth AF

Medium Bombers hit bridges, viaducts, and rail lines at Collazone, Perugia, Foligno, Massa Lombarda, Pietrasanta, Cattolica, Pesaro, Arezzo, and Bucine. Light Bombers hit Arcidosso and motor transport in the area. Fighter Bombers are restricted by bad weather but attack several bridges and roads in line of enemy retreat which at its farthest point is N and W of Viterbo.

Tenth AF

More than 30 B-25’s continue to supply troops at Imphal with ammo. 16 P-40’s hit Mogaung and targets of opportunity in N Burma.

Fourteenth AF

50 P-40’s, P-51’s, and B-25’s hit troop concentrations in Yellow R area at Lingroupao and S of Loyang. In Tungting Lake area about 100 P-40’s and P-51’s attack numerous supply boats and other river and lake traffic, and hit dock areas and warehouses at Lanchi, Yuankiang, and at scattered points. Also hit are villages and troops in Changsha and Kuanchuang areas.

Fifth AF

Fierce ground fighting continues on Biak I while Japanese airplanes attack Allied ground forces and shipping offshore; P-47’s battle attacking aircraft, shooting down several. P-47’s and A-20’s hit troop concentrations, comm, and various other targets in Wewak and Hansa Bay areas. B-24’s bomb Peleliu airfield and Dublon I.

Thirteenth AF

6 B-24’s bomb runways at Tobera and Rapopo. 22 P-39’s and 10 P-38’s join 20-plus Navy airplanes in attacks on supply dumps near Ralum. 20 B-25’s pound Malapau village. 44 P-39’s hit Baku airfield, Tsirogei plantation, barges and pier S of Kleine I, and occupied area W of Komai.

Seventh AF

Eniwetok-based B-24’s hit Truk during 11/12 Jun and again during the day.

USA

FRANCE—21 Army Group: In U.S. First Army’s VII Corps area, 39th Inf of 9th Div, attached to 4th Div, is given part of 22d Inf’s sector along coast and takes Crisbecq, from which enemy has withdrawn, as well as Dangueville and Fontenay-sur-Mer, forcing enemy back to his MLR on Quinéville ridge. With strong fire support, including naval, 22d Inf makes concerted assault on Ozeville and captures it; 12th Inf moves forward again to Les Fieffes Dancel, at W end of Quinéville ridge; 8th Inf makes limited attack on Montebourg, but finds it strongly held and pulls back. W of the Merderet, 90th Div commits 359th Inf, which is returned to it by 4th Div, between 357th and 358th but is still unable to make much headway; night attack, 12–13, on Pont l’Abbé by 358th overruns the town, which has been leveled by artillery and aerial bombardment. 508th Para Inf of 82d A/B Div, reinf and organized as a TF, crosses the Douve at Beuzeville-la-Bastille, night 12– 13, in effort to make contact with 101st A/B Div at Baupte. 101st A/B Div envelops and captures Carentan: Brig Gen Anthony McAuliffe coordinates final assault, which is made by 506th Para Inf, replacing 502d, on right and 327th Gli and to its E 501st Para Regts on left; after 501st and 506th Regts close circle about Carentan, elements of latter and 327th Gli Inf drive rapidly into the town and eliminate stragglers; to secure approaches to Carentan, 506th and 501st Regts thrust toward Baupte and Priers, respectively, but are soon stopped; 327th Gli Inf pushes SE to Montmartin-en-Graignes region and makes contact with elements of V Corps. In V Corps area, 29th Div TF (2 cos of 115th Inf) crosses the Vire to reconnoiter in Montmartin-en-Graignes area and take bridges over Vire–Taute Canal but is halted by strong opposition in Montmartin-en- Graignes region. To meet expected enemy counterattack in weak sector between VII and V Corps, elements of 2d Armd Div are ordered to Montmartinen- Graignes area. V Corps begins attack toward St. Lô and is vigorously opposed on right. 115th Inf, 29th Div, makes futile attempt to cross Elie R SE of Ste Marguerite-d’Elle; 3d Bn crosses but is driven back with severe casualties. 116th Inf attacks through 115th in evening and succeeds in crossing. 23d Inf, 2d Div, attempts to reach Hill 192, which commands approaches to St. Lô from N and E, but is stopped at Elie R; 9th Inf, on div left, against lighter resistance, advances in conjunction with 1st Div and takes Litteau ridge. On left flank of V Corps, 1st Div, with 18th Inf on right and 26th on left, thrusts to edge of Caumont.

In Br Second Army’s 30 Corps area, 50th Div maintains pressure on enemy near Tilly-sur-Seulles. 7th Armd Div begins flanking attack on right flank of corps and pushes through Livry to positions E of Caumont.

ITALY—AAI: In U.S. Fifth Army area, Civitavecchia port is opened to LST traffic. IV Corps continues pursuit of enemy northward, advancing a little less rapidly than VI Corps had, against gradually increasing resistance. 36th Div, reinf by 361st Inf of 91st Div and tanks and tank destroyer units, is in assault, its advance screened by 117th Cav Recon Sq. TF Ramey, under Brig Gen Rufus S. Ramey, consisting of 91st Cav Recon Sq, reinf by 141st Inf of 36th Div and supporting units, is formed to screen right flank of IV Corps and maintain contact with French. Enemy is offering delaying opposition in vicinity of Orbetello.

CBI—On Salween front, Ch 115th Inf recovers Hongmoshu, in Huei-jen Bridge area.

NEW GUINEA—On Biak, 2d Bn of 163d Inf, 41st Div, arrives; 186th Inf remains on first phase line patrolling actively while awaiting forward movement of 162d Inf to right. Regimental boundary is extended 300 yards on N; 162d Inf is still furiously opposed on right, where 3d Bn works slowly forward, advance elements gaining but 300 yards; gap of almost 900 yards exists between 3d and 2d Bns at end of day. Engineers begin repairs on Mokmer airdrome. In Wakde-Sarmi area, Gen Sibert takes command of TF TORNADO. Hq, 6th Div, becomes headquarters of TF TORNADO, replacing Hq, RCT 158.

MARIANAS—Aircraft of TF 58 continue attacks to complete destruction of enemy planes and wreck airfields; attack enemy convoy attempting to escape, sinking 10–14 ships; sink a cargo vessel just off Saipan and severely damage another; sink enemy vessel in Tanapag harbor.

Tuesday, June 11, 2024

East Coast Santa Fe Modeler's Mini Meet

 I hope to see many of you in person this Saturday at the ECSFM Mini Meet in Doylestown PA.  I will be making a presentation on finding Santa Fe history in odd places.  I will guide attendees to some of the less known corners of the internet and the real world where I've found info on the Santa Fe.


John Barry,

Lovettsville, VA

80 Years Ago, Sunday, 11 Jun 1944

USN

Pacific

Naval Base, Biak Island, Schoeten Islands, is established.

F6Fs from TF 58 (Vice Admiral Marc A. Mitscher), 16 from each carrier and 12 from each small carrier, accompanied by a TBF or SB2C from each task group (the latter to lead the fighters in and out), blankets Japanese airfields in the Marianas. This move, which achieves complete surprise, also assures control of the air over the Marianas. Combat air patrol F6Fs from TF 58 begin to intercept and down Japanese planes in the vicinity of TF 58. F6Fs also damage Japanese auxiliary submarine chaser No.8 Shonan Maru and cargo vessel Keiyo Maru (see 13 June).14

Submarine Barb (SS-220) sinks Japanese merchant fishing vessels Chihaya Maru and Toten Maru in Sea of Okhotsk, east of Karafuto, 46°50'N, 144°05'E.

Submarine Redfin (SS-272), despite presence of escort vessel, sinks Japanese tanker Asanagi Maru west of Jolo,06°02'N, 120°50'E.

Atlantic

U.S. battleships off Normandy provide gunfire support to U.S. Army forces ten miles inland at Carentan, France.

Off the invasion beaches, German torpedo boats S 130, S 144, S 146, S 150 and S 167 launch torpedo attacks on U.S. invasion shipping, sinking Landing Ship Tank LST-496 and tug Partridge (ATO-138), 49°30'N, 00°50'N and damaging Landing Ship Tank LST-538, 49°48'N, 00°31'W. German motor torpedo boat S 138 torpedoes and damages destroyer Nelson (DD-623), 49°31'N, 00°50'W; Landing Craft Infantry LCI-219 is sunk by aircraft.

Aircraft (VC 95) from escort carrier Croatan (CVE-25) teams with destroyer escorts Frost (DE-144), Huse (DE-145),and Inch (DE-146) sink German submarine U-490 midway between Flores Island and Flemish Cap, 42°47'N,40°08'W.

AAF

Eighth AF

Weather prevents operations against priority targets in Germany 90 the Heavy Bombers attack bridges on the Loire, bridges and airfields on Brest Peninsula and near Paris, and coastal defenses in Pas de Calais area. Of 1,043 Heavy Bombers airborne, over 400 abort or fail to bomb due to clouds and absence or malfunction of Pathfinders. 640 Heavy Bombers bomb targets, including 10 airfields and landing grounds, several bridges, and various Targets of opportunity. 3 Heavy Bombers are lost. VIII FC supports Heavy Bombers over NW France and Ninth AF Medium Bombers attack Paris area. Fighter Bombers attack over 60 targets, including railroad yards, sidings, junctions, bridges, trains, airfields, convoys, an oil tanker, a power station, and warehouses. Fighters destroy 5 aircraft. VIII FC loses 8 fighters.

Ninth AF

129 B-26’s and A-20’s bomb rail and road bridges and intersections, rail lines, oil tanks, arty, and town areas, in morning operations. Bad weather prevents afternoon operations. 10 fighter groups fly escort and strafe and bomb bridges, railroads, gun emplacements, rail and road traffic, and marshalling yards in support of Allied ground troops in France.

Twelfth AF

Weather cancels all Light Bomber and Medium Bomber operations. Fighter Bombers and fighters, operating on a reduced scale, hit vehicles, roads, and bridges N of battleline which US Fifth Army’s VI Corps has extended 65 mi N of Rome.

Fifteenth AF

126 B-17’s and 60 P-51’s depart Russian shuttle bases for Italy to complete the first FRANTIC operation. On the way 121 B-17’s bomb airfield at Focsani; 1 B-17 is lost. 540-plus other B-17’s and B-24’s attack oil installations at Constanta and Giurgiu (both raids having fighter escorts) oil refinery and marshalling yard at Smederovo. The Heavy Bombers and fighters claim total of 50 airplanes destroyed during the day’s missions.

Tenth AF

30 B-25’s continue flying ammo to Imphal area. 55 A-36’s, P-51’s, and P-40’s attack targets at Myitkyina, Mogaung, Indawgyi Lake, and Padaung.

Fourteenth AF

In China’s Tungting Lake area 80-plus P-40’s, P-51’s, and P-38’s pound towns of Lanchi and Anking, hit cavalry compound at Kintsing, attack Japanese HQ, positions, and river traffic N of Changsha, destroy or damage several boats, barges, and sampans at Changsha, and strafe numerous targets of opportunity throughout the entire region. In Yellow R area, 27 B-25’s and P-40’s pound barracks, fortifications, tank concentration, several armored vehicles, and cavalry forces at Iching and Lingroupao. 3 B-25’s on sea sweep in S China Sea claim 1 600ft freighter sunk.

Fifth AF

B-24’s bomb Sorido airfield and surrounding areas as US carrier forces attack Saipan, Tinian and Guam. B-25’s, A-20’s, and P-47’s continue to saturate Wewak-Hansa Bay coastline with bombs. Other B-24’s bomb Dublon and Peleliu airfield.

Thirteenth AF

130-plus B-25’s, P-38’s P-39’s, and Navy dive bombers pound AA positions S and SW of Rapopo. P-39’s fly 44 sorties against occupied areas at Komai, Kakaura, and Quaga, AA guns at Kangu Hill, and plantations at Arigua and Tsirogei.

Seventh AF

B-24’s from Eniwetok hit Truk during 11/12 Jun. B-25’s follow with raid against Ponape during the morning.

USA

FRANCE—21 Army Group: In U.S. First Army’s VII Corps area, 4th Div’s TF Barber continues futile efforts to break through Azeville gap to Quinéville ridge in coastal sector; 12th Inf gains its objective— W end of Montebourg–Quinéville ridge—but pulls back behind Montebourg–St Floxel road since its flanks are exposed; 8th Inf digs in along Le Ham– Montebourg road when enemy fire prevents forward movement to the RR. 82d A/B Div’s 505th Para Inf, making main effort with 2d Bn of 325th Gli Inf, thrusts into Le Ham under heavy fire and finds Le Ham deserted. 90th Div continues to make slow progress W of the Merderet, but partly surrounds Pont l’Abbé. 101st A/B Div presses in slowly on Carentan against unabated opposition: On right, 3d Bn of 502d Para Inf, after crossing the Madeleine R and clearing enemy strong points, is joined by 1st Bn; determined counterattacks are repelled and 2d Bn, 502d Para Inf, takes over line, night 11–12. While main body of 327th Gli Inf conducts holding action along canal on left, elements move in to outskirts of Carentan along Bassin Flot. Destructive fire is placed on Carentan during night 11–12, and Germans quietly abandon the town. In V Corps area, elements of 2d Armd Div (3d Bn, 41st Armd Inf Regt) are committed to strengthen bridgehead at Auville-sur-le-Vey, since VII Corps’ 101st A/B is fully occupied with battle for Carentan. V Corps front is quiet except at tip of Fôret de Cerisy, where elements of 2d Div reduce strong point at Haute Littée crossroads.

In Br Second Army’s 30 Corps area, 7th Armd Div breaks into Tilly-sur-Seulle but is forced out by enemy.

USSR-FINLAND—Continuing offensive against Mannerheim Line, Soviet forces drive wedge 15 miles deep on 30-mile front in Finnish positions.

FRANTIC—U.S. Fifteenth Air Force planes attack Focsani airfield while returning to Italy from their first shuttle bombing mission between there and USSR.

ITALY—AAI: In U.S. Fifth Army area, IV Corps (Gen Crittenberger) takes command of VI Corps sector and of 36th Div. VI Corps, which is to participate in Operation ANVIL under U.S. Seventh Army, has driven nearly 65 miles N of Rome with little difficulty, but there are indications that rear-guard opposition will soon increase. In FEC area, Montefiascone falls to 1st Motorized Div. 3d Algerian Inf Div secures Valentano.

In Br Eighth Army’s 13 Corps area, S African 6th Armd Div is unable to break through enemy delaying line below Bagnoregio. In 10 Corps area, Br 6th Armd Div crosses Galantina R, from which enemy has departed, and takes Cantalupo.

CHINA—Japanese attack in strength across Liuyang R and meet little opposition from Chinese of IX War Area.

NEW GUINEA—U.S. 6th Div commander, Maj Gen Franklin C. Sibert, his hq, 20th Inf, and miscellaneous units of 6th Div arrive at Toem. On Biak, TF HURRICANE opens assault with 2 regts abreast to clear region N and W of Mokmer airfield. 186th Inf, on left along coast, easily reaches first phase line, about 1,350 yards beyond W end of runway. 162d Inf gets left flank to first phase line but is halted a little short of line of departure, extending inland from coast at Monoebaboe, on right. Japanese laborers bring news of Japanese West Caves strong point, some 1,000 yards NW of 3d Bn, 162d Inf. Elements of TF HURRICANE probing toward East Caves are recalled to Mokmer airdrome. Japanese in Parai Defile finally yield to pressure from E and W.

MARIANAS—As invasion convoy, after rendezvousing off the Marshalls, sails for Saipan, carrier planes of TF 58 begin preinvasion softening of the Marianas, a day ahead of schedule, with fighter sweep in afternoon that gains control of the air. Enemy losses through destruction or serious damage are estimated to be from 147 to 215 planes. Of 225 U.S. aircraft launched, only 12 are lost.

USMC

Carrier planes of TF 58 begin preinvasion softening of Marianas. Northern Attack Force departs Eniwetok for Saipan.

Monday, June 10, 2024

80 Years Ago, Saturday 10 June 1944

USN

Pacific

PB4Ys (VB 108, VB 109) sweep ahead of TF 58 (Vice Admiral Marc A. Mitscher) as it approaches the Marianas, to intercept and destroy any Japanese aircraft in the path of the fast carriers. These sweeps will be repeated on 11 June. During these two days of operations, a Privateer from each squadron will shoot down a Japanese plane at some distance away from the task force. The use of PB4Ys is decided upon because sightings of these long-range planes in that region is a commonplace occurrence and would thus arouse no enemy suspicions that a carrier task force is in the area.

High speed transport Talbot (APD-7) is damaged in collision with battleship Pennsylvania (BB-38), en route to the Marianas.

Destroyer Taylor (DD-468) sinks Japanese submarine RO-111, 210 miles north-northwest of Kavieng, New Ireland,00°26'N, 149°16'E.

Destroyer escort Bangust (DE-739) sinks Japanese submarine RO-42, 70 miles northeast of Kwajalein, Marshalls,10°05'N, 168°22'E.

British submarine HMS Tantalus sinks Japanese army cargo ship Hiyoshi Maru in Strait of Malacca, 03°05'N,99°56'E.

USAAF B-25s bomb Japanese shipping off Manokwari, sinking auxiliary sailing vessel Shinei Maru.

Mine damages Japanese cargo vessel Yozan Maru off Manila.

Japanese cargo vessel Kinmon Maru is sunk by accidental fire, Singapore, 01°17'N, 103°51'E.

Atlantic

German shore battery sinks Destroyer Glennon (DD-620) off Normandy by, 50°32'N, 01°12'W; Landing Craft Tank LCT-209 sinks after running aground off beachhead. U.S. freighter Charles Morgan is damaged by bomb off UTAH Beach that kills 7 of the 64-man Army stevedore unit on board and one merchant crewman; there are no casualties among the 27-man Armed Guard. Fleet tug Kiowa (ATF-72) takes on board the survivors. Despite strenuous efforts to save her, Charles Morgan, is ultimately declared a total loss.

Mediterranean

Heaviest German air raid since 3 May occurs off Anzio against U.S. shipping off the beachhead. Minesweeper Symbol (AM-123), tank landing ship LST-211, infantry landing craft LCI-41, and U.S. freighter Tarleton Brown are all damaged by near-misses of bombs.

AAF

Eighth AF

Bad weather restricts operations to NW France. 873 Heavy Bombers are airborne but over 200 abort due to cloud conditions. 589 including 31 Pathfinders, attack 8 airfields in France and 9 coastal installations in Pas de Calais area. One B-24 is downed by AA at Evreux. VIII FC, flying over 1,600 sorties, supports Heavy Bomber missions and launches attacks against about 80 targets, including railroad facilities, convoys, tank column, trucks, radar station, tunnels, gun emplacement, supply dump, and a power plant. About 225 vehicles, including train engines and cars, are destroyed, along with 16 enemy aircraft. 25 fighters are lost.

Ninth AF

IX TAC establishes its first station on the Continent, at au Guay. 500-plus B-26’s and A-20’s bomb targets in assault area in France. Targets include military concentrations, road and rail bridges and junctions, artillery batteries, marshalling yards, and town areas. Aircraft of more than 15 fighter groups fly escort to bombers and transports, and bomb numerous targets in support of ground assault, including rail facilities, roads, troop concentrations, artillery, and town areas.

Twelfth AF

Medium Bombers attack bridges, railroads, and roads N, NE, and NW of Rome. Light Bombers hit motor transport in town of Arcidosso. Fighter Bombers and fighters bomb and strafe motor transport and roads N of battle area, destroying numerous vehicles, especially along the roads between Rome and Vetralla. In ground action Indian 4th Div takes Pescara and Chieti, while 2d NZ Div reaches Avezzano E of Rome. XII BC is disbanded in Corsica.

Fifteenth AF

More than 550 B-17’s and B-24’s attack oil stores at Porto Marghera, oil refinery at Trieste, marshalling yards at Mestre, Trieste, and Ancona, and airfield at Ferrara. P-51’s and P-38’s fly escort, strafe Targets of opportunity between Bucharest and Danube R and S of Craiova, and dive-bomb an oil refinery at Ploesti

Tenth AF

23 B-24’s bomb targets at Chauk, Lonywa, and Yenangyaung while 29 others supply ammo to Imphal area. 50 A-36’s, P-51’s, and P-40’s blast targets at Myitkyina, Mogaung and Tapo.

Fourteenth AF

23 P-40’s and P-51’s hit railroad traffic and tracks at Linfen and Loning and tank concentration at Lingroupao. 6 P-40’s hit bridge at Tasa. B-25’s, P-40’s, P-51’s, and P-38’s carry out 150-plus sorties against numerous targets throughout Tungting Lake area. Numerous rivercraft are destroyed or damaged, Kukang and other villages NE of Changsha are bombed, Hankow-Wuchang airfield revetments and buildings are pounded, Changshowkai area is blasted, and several river landings and storage installations in the lake area are attacked. 3 B-24’s on S China Sea sweep claim 1 small cargo ship sunk.

Fifth AF

A-20’s hit airfield at Babo, destroying grounded aircraft, fuel dump, several buildings, and a gun position. A-20’s, B-25’s, and RAAF airplanes hit Wewak area with more than 100 tons of bombs.

Thirteenth AF

8 P-38’s skip-bomb supply tunnels at Keravia Bay while 4 others strafe nearby AA positions. AA guns S of Rapopo are attacked by 12 B-25’s, 20 P-39’s, and 20-plus Navy dive bombers. Other B-25’s bomb Ratawul. 31 P-39’s and 20-plus Navy aircraft hit Chinatown at Buka and a supply area NE of the airstrip, a barge at Sohano I, trucks near Tsirogei, and a ford near Monoitu.

Seventh AF

B-24’s, staging through Eniwetok, bomb Truk and Ponape during 9/10 Jun. B-25’s from Makin hit Nauru during the day.

USA

FRANCE—21 Army Group: In U.S. First Army area, VII and V Corps establish contact at Auvillesur- le-Vey, but enemy remains in Carentan. In VII Corps area, TF BARBER, on 4th Div right, makes little headway through Azeville gap toward enemy’s MLR on Quinéville ridge, since enemy is disposed in strength on the TF flanks; efforts to reduce Ozeville and Château de Fontenay are futile; 12th Inf reaches positions just below Montebourg–Quinéville highway in region E of Montebourg and is well ahead of rest of 4th Div; 8th Inf gains its objectives along Le Ham–Montebourg highway. 505th Para Inf, 82d A/B Div, takes one of its objectives, Montebourg Station, but is halted a little short of the other, Le Ham. 60th Div (less 359th Inf, attached to 4th Div) attacks W toward the Douve through 82d A/B Div’s Merderet bridgehead but makes little headway; 357th Inf crosses at La Fière and pushes toward Les Landes; 358th crosses at Chef-du-Pont and moves on Pont l’Abbé, getting a little beyond Picauville. 101st A/B Div begins envelopment of Carentan: 327th Gli Inf moves in from NE upon crossing the Douve near Brévands and cuts E exits from the town; bitter battle develops on W, where 3d Bn, 502d Para Inf, inches across causeway NW of Carentan under enemy fire, which supporting arty is unable to silence; elements of 401st Gli Inf make contact with V Corps units at Auville-sur-le- Vey. 9th Div arrives and begins to debark. V Corps gains its objectives with little difficulty since German lines above Caumont have given way and gap 10 miles wide is virtually undefended. 29th Div’s 115th Inf reaches Elle R line. 38th and 9th Regts of 2d Div speed through Fret de Cerisy to objectives. 18th Inf, 1st Div, reaches St Lô–Bayeux highway.

In Br Second Army area, 30 Corps commits 7th Armd Div to action in Tilly-sur-Seulles region, where enemy is resisting strongly. I Corps continues to press toward Caen.

ITALY—AAI: Br 5 Corps pursues enemy up Adriatic coast, Ind 4th Div taking Pescara and Chieti.

In U.S. Fifth Army’s VI Corps area, 1st Armd Div, relieved by 36th Div on left and FEC on right, is withdrawn from line. 36th Div is responsible for entire VI Corps zone. In II Corps area, final elements of corps are withdrawn from line. In FEC area, Lt Gen Edgar de Larminat, as head of Pursuit Corps, directs advance of 3d Algerian Div on W and 1st Motorized Div on E in narrow sector, largely W of Highway 2, on Fifth Army right flank.

In Br Eighth Army’s 13 Corps area, enemy rear guards are slowing S African 6th Armd Div below Bagnoregio. 4th Div reverts to corps from Br 10 Corps upon relief E of the Tiber by Ind 8th Div. 10 Corps is meeting considerable resistance below Terni. NZ 2d Div reaches Avezzano.

CBI—In NCAC area, Allied troops launch coordinated attack on Myitkyina but make little progress. In Mogaung Valley, Ch forces are pushing closer to Kamaing, which is besieged.

On Salween front, Ch 87th and 88th Divs are supplied with ammunition by air as they continue to attack hills in Lung-ling. In China, Japanese have 5 divs along the Liu-yang R and are threatening Changsha.

NEW GUINEA—On Biak, Gen Krueger again urges Gen Fuller to secure airfields as quickly as possible. Bulk of 162d Inf, TF HURRICANE, advances cautiously W toward Mokmer airdrome. Enemy continues to resist in Parai Defile. AT Co of 162d Inf and Co A, 186th, are recalled from ridges extending W from trail inland, which they have been trying in vain to clear since 7th. In Hollandia– Aitape area, hq of TF PERSECUTION orders positions along the Driniumor improved quickly; in the event of attack, enemy is to be delayed first along line X-ray R–Koronal Creek and second at the Nigia. Main line of resistance about the airfields is to be held. Japanese patrol activity is decreasing in Driniumor area but increasing along S branches of Niumen Creek, about 3,000 yards E of the Driniumor.

U.S.—U.S. Eighth Army is activated at Memphis, Tennessee.

Sunday, June 9, 2024

80 Years Ago Friday 9 June 1944

Pacific

Destroyers bombard Japanese repair facilities at Fangelawa Bay, New Ireland.

Submarine Harder (SS-257) sinks Japanese destroyer Tanikaze in Sibitu Passage, 90 miles southwest of Basilan Island, 04°50'N, 119°40'E.

Submarine Swordfish (SS-193) attacks Japanese convoy east of the Bonins, sinking destroyer Matsukaze 55 miles east of Chichi Jima, 27°14'N, 142°55'E.

USAAF A-20s bomb Japanese shipping off Manokwari, sinking cargo vessels No.10 Fuku Maru, No.12 Fuku Maru, Ebisu Maru, Fukuda Maru, Atarashi Maru, and Shosei Maru.

Atlantic

Off Normandy, destroyer Meredith (DD-726) is sunk by horizontal bomber and as a result of mine damage suffered off the invasion beaches on 8 June, 49°26'N, 01°04'W. German schnellbootes S 172, S 174, S 175 and S 187 attack convoy in English channel, torpedoing and sinking tank landing ship LST-314, 49°43'N, 00°52'W, and damaging tank landing ship LST-376. The latter is later scuttled by escorts, 49°43'N, 00°53'W. Infantry landing craft LCI-416 is sunk by mine; motor minesweeper YMS-305 is damaged by shore battery, 49°31'N, 00°50'W. U.S. freighter Ezra Weston is damaged by shore battery fire that kills 5 and wounds 11 of her 600 embarked troops; there are no other casualties among the ship's complement, including the 26-man Armed Guard.

AAF

Eighth AF

Bad weather prevents Heavy Bomber operations. One fighter squadron attacks shipping and another squadron flies escort for photo recon mission (not completed), losing 2 fighters.

Twelfth AF

Medium Bombers again hit enemy comm, bombing bridges with good results. Light Bombers hit targets of opportunity in Acquapendente area. Fighter Bombers and fighters continue to pound motor transport retreating up Italian peninsula, and to bomb roads and railways in path of enemy retreat, as US Fifth Army reaches Viterbo, where British Eighth Army shortly makes contact with it.

Fifteenth AF

Around 500 B-24’s and B-17’s bomb industrial targets and an airfield around Munich and attack oil storage at Porto Marghera. P-47’s, P-38’s, and P-51’s fly over 250 sorties in support of the Munich raids. Heavy Bombers and fighters claim over 30 aircraft destroyed. 13 US airplanes are lost.

Tenth AF

5 B-25’s carry out strike on Imphal-Tiddim road while 20-plus others continue to supply ammo to Imphal area. More than 40 A-36’s, P-51’s, and P-40’s hit Myitkyina, Mogaung, and Kadu.

Fourteenth AF

P-40’s, P-51’s, and B-25’s fly more than 200 sorties against numerous targets throughout the Tungting Lake area. River shipping of all description is pounded, several troop concentrations are attacked, airfields at Hankow and Wuchang are bombed, and towns of Ichang, Siangyin, Yuankiang, and Kiaotow are hit. 4 Heavy Bomber and Fighter Bomber sorties over S China Sea result in claims of 3 sea going vessels, a tug, and a barge sunk.

Fifth AF

B-24’s bomb Peleliu airfield. A-20’s bomb shipping in Manokwari harbor. B-24’s, A-20’s, B-25’s, and P- 39’s, along with RAAF planes, drop about 140 tons of bombs on various targets in Wewak area. B-24’s of Thirteenth Air TF bomb Alet airfield and targets of opportunity in Truk.

Thirteenth AF

32 B-25’s, 20 P-39’s, and 5 P-38’s pound supplies and gun positions in Ratawul-Talili Bay area. other B-25’s attack pier at New Massava Plantation and railroad to Mandres Saw Mill. P-39’s hit town of Buka, supply area to the N of the airfield, and Arigua Plantation.

Seventh AF

During 8/9 Jun B-24’s from Eniwetok bomb Truk.

USA

FRANCE—21 Army Group: In U.S. First Army’s VII Corps area, 4th Div makes significant progress at some points as it continues drive on Cherbourg: on right flank, 22d Inf forces German garrison of Azeville fortifications to surrender and organizes TF Barber to drive on Quinéville through Azeville gap; 12th Inf thrusts quickly northward from Edmondeville, reducing strongroupoint at Joganville; during hard and costly fighting, 8th Inf overruns enemy positions at Magneville and drives to Ecausseville, from which enemy withdraws after nightfall. 505th Para Inf, 82d A/B Div, reinf by bn of 327th Gli Inf, makes limited progress W of Magneville; 82d A/B Div makes main effort at La Fière, where 2 bns of 325th Gli Inf, followed by 1st Bn of 508th Para Inf, cross the Merderet and secure bridgehead of sufficient depth to include all units that had been isolated W of the Merderet. 101st A/B Div prepares for 2-pronged attack on Carentan via causeway and Brévands, but its jump-off is delayed awaiting bridge repairs. V Corps attacks S toward Fôret de Cerisy on 3-div front, committing 2d Div in narrow zone between 29th and 1st. From Isigny, main body of 175th Inf, 29th Div, thrusts S to its objectives, reaching La Fotelaie, while Co K, reinf by Rcn Tr and tanks, forces crossing of the Vire R at Auville-sur-le Vey; 115th Inf crosses the Aure S of Canchy and fans out to Bricqueville, La Folie, and Le Carrefour. In center of V Corps, 2d Div’s 38th Inf pushes into Trévières and begins clearing it while 9th, to E, thrusts to Rubercy. 1st Div, attacking with 18th Inf on right and 26th on left, reaches its left flank objectives, Agy and Dodigny. 2d Armd Div begins landing.

Br Second Army is pushing forward toward Tillysur- Seulles in 30 Corps zone and Caen in 1 Corps zone against strong opposition.

ITALY—AAI: In U.S. Fifth Army’s VI Corps area, 133d Inf of 34th Div overruns Tarquinia. 361st Inf of 91st Div enters line, taking over coastal sector under command of 36th Div. Viterbo falls without a fight to CCA, 1st Armd Div, early in day. II Corps is being relieved by FEC.

Br Eighth Army establishes new boundary between 13 and 10 Corps along Tiber R. Elements of 13 Corps E of the river (Br 6th Armd and 4th Inf Divs) pass to command of 10 Corps. In 13 Corps area, S African 6th Armd Div makes contact with U.S. Fifth Army at Viterbo and pushes on toward Orvieto. In 10 Corps area, Br 6th Armd Div continues toward Terni. Ind 8th Div reaches Arsoli.

USSR-FINLAND—As prelude to main summer offensive, Soviet troops of Leningrad Front launch attacks to eliminate Finnish threat on Karelian Isthmus, between Lake Ladoga and Gulf of Finland, striking at Finnish Mannerheim Line after 3-hour preparatory bombardment.

CBI—Adm Mountbatten directs Gen Giffard, CG 11 Army Group, to clear Dimapur–Kohima– Imphal road not later than mid-July; to clear Dimapur–Kohima–Imphal Plain–Yuwa–Tamanthi region; to prepare to attack across the Chindwin in Yuwa–Tamanthi area after the monsoon.

On Salween front, Ch 71st Army begins attack on 2 of 3 hills in Lung-ling. 9th Div of Ch 2d Army blocks Burma Road 4 miles S of Mang-shih; because of disagreement between army and group army commanders, 9th Div later withdraws the block and confines its activities to patrolling.

NEW GUINEA—Engr aviation bns begin building strip on Owi. On Biak, main body of 162d Inf, TF HURRICANE continues W along coast toward Mokmer airfield against heavy fire from East Caves; makes contact with 2d Bn, which reverts to regt. Efforts are being made to discover limits of the East Caves position. In Hollandia–Aitape area, 1st and 2d Bns of 158th Inf, TF TORNADO, continue to Tirfoam R, overrunning enemy defenses en route. Forward movement from there is halted since 158th Inf is to be prepared to attack Noemfoor I. at short notice. A second RCT of 6th Div is to relieve 158th Inf. In sector of TF PERSECUTION, Japanese are found to have withdrawn from Afua–Palauru trail. Sq of RAAF Beaufighters of Wing 71 arrives at Tadji, where only 110th Rcn Sq of U.S. Fifth Air Force has been stationed from 25 May to date.

Friday, June 7, 2024

80 Years Ago Thursday 8 June 1944

Pacific

USAAF B-25s (17th Reconnaissance Squadron), escorted by P-38s (475th Fighter Group), attack Japanese Biak-bound reinforcement convoy (seven destroyers, each towing a large landing barge), sinking Harusame 30 miles northwest of Manokwari, 00°05'S, 132°45'E, and damaging Shiratsuyu and Shikinami; three barges are lost. Later that same day, Allied surface forces, TF 74 and TF 75 (Rear Admiral Victor A.C. Crutchley, RN), including two U.S. light cruisers and accompanying destroyers, intercept the remaining six enemy ships and engage them; the battle continues into 9 June. Although Hamakaze claims damage to a U.S. cruiser none of the Allied ships are damaged; TF 74/TF 75 gunfire, however, damages Shigure, and Crutchley's force turns back the Japanese before they can accomplish their mission.

Submarine Hake (SS-256) sinks Japanese destroyer Kazagumo at mouth of Davao Gulf, about 20 miles southwest of Cape San Augustin, Mindanao, 06°04'N, 125°56'E.

Submarine Harder (SS-257) evacuates coast-watchers from northeast coast of North Borneo.

Submarine Rasher (SS-269) attacks Japanese convoy in the Celebes Sea, sinking underway replenishment vessel Shioya northwest of Menado, 03°15'N, 124°03'E.

Submarine Whale (SS-239) is damaged by depth charges north of the Bonins, 31°00'N, 143°55'E, but remains on patrol.

Aircraft sink Japanese army tanker No.5 Nippo Maru off northwest coast of New Guinea, 00°33'S, 132°53'E.

Atlantic

Off Normandy, mines continue to take their toll: destroyer escort Rich (DE-695), 49°31'N, 01°10'W, and tank landing ship LST-499, 49°30'N, 01°10'W, are sunk; destroyers Glennon (DD-620), 50°32'N, 01°12'W, and Meredith (DD-726),49°33'N, 01°06'W, are damaged.

AAF

USSTAF

Gen Spaatz, CG, places oil in first priority as target for USSTAF as result of the destructive effect achieved by several missions against oil centers in May.

Eighth AF

Attacks are made on comm to isolate German forward elements, and airfields are bombed to prevent German air support. Cloud conditions prevent over 400 Heavy Bombers from executing assignments but 735 attack targets including airfields at Rennes and Le Mans and bridges, marshalling yards and other railroad facilities, and various targets of opportunity at or near Tours, Nantes, Cinq Marsla-Pile, Pontaubalt, La Vicomte-sur-Rance, Angers, Orleans, la Friliere, Etampes, and Morigny. 3 bombers are lost. VIII FC, flying 1,405 fighter sorties on this day, sends Fighter Bomber attacks against nearly 75 targets, including railroad facilities, bridges, convoys, airfields, barges, radio towers, troop concentration, a transformer, and a coastal gun. Ftrs and Fighter Bombers destroy nearly 400 rail, ground transport, and military vehicles and claim 46 airplanes destroyed. 22 fighters of VIII FC are lost.

Ninth AF

Around 400 Medium Bombers attack rail and road bridges and junctions, rail sidings, marshalling yards, town areas, fuel storage tanks, ammunition dumps, troop concentration and strong points in the Calais area. Around 1,300 fighters provide support to Medium Bombers and high cover over assault area, and bomb and strafe bridges, marshalling yards, gun batteries, rail facilities, vehicles, towns, and troop concentrations.

Twelfth AF

Weather again restricts activity. Many Medium Bomber missions are abortive, though several bridges, railroad lines, and guns are attacked. A-20’s hit town of Bolsena and targets in surrounding areas. Fighter Bombers and fighters continue to patrol battle areas destroying motor transport, and attacking train cars, roads, rail-lines, and enemy concentrations, as US Fifth Army approaches Viterbo and British Eighth Army pushes toward Orvieto.

Fifteenth AF

52 B-17’s, with P-47 escort, bomb navy yard and dry-docks at Pola.

Tenth AF

B-24’s mine Bangkok and Mergui areas. B-25’s maintain ammo supply to Imphal. 9 B-25’s pound Imphal-Tiddim road and a few A-36’s and P-51’s hit the enemy in Mogaung area.

Fourteenth AF

19 P-40’s bomb docks, warehouses, and military installations at Ichang and Shasi and strafe 2 cav units at Nanying. 4 P-51’s attack railroad traffic in Singtai-Chengting area.

Fifth AF

B-25’s, P-38’s, B-24’s, and A-20’s battle enemy fighters over Manokwari and Efman-Schouten Is areas, bomb small freighter off Manokwari, and hit gun emplacements and occupied areas at Kamiri, at Namber, and near Sorido. P-40’s hit supply areas and villages in vicinity of Sarmi. A-20’s again hit Wewak area. B-24’s from the Admiralties hit Truk.

Thirteenth AF

24 B-25’s bomb supply area at Ratawul. 32 P-39’s bomb Tsirogei and supply area N of Buka. 6 P-38’s hit Monoitu Mission.

Seventh AF

During 7/8 Jun, B-24’s from Eniwetok bomb Truk and Ponape. B-25’s from Makin follow up during day with strike against Nauru.

USA

FRANCE—21 Army Group: Contact is established between U.S. First and Br Second Armies near Port-en-Bessin.

In U.S. First Army area, VII Corps begins all-out. drive on Cherbourg with 4 refits—505th Para Inf (82d A/B Div) and 8th Inf (4th Div) on W and 4th Div’s 12th and 22d Regts on E. Enemy again halts assault of 22d Inf at edge of Azeville–Crisbecq fortifications; 12th Inf fights bitterly for Edmondeville. On W, attack reaches general line from Montebourg highway through Magneville to the Merderet. 82d A/B Div remains under strong enemy pressure along the Merderet. On VII Corps S flank, 101st A/B Div opens battle for Carentan in effort to effect speedy junction with V Corps: 506th Inf ( — ), strongly reinf, forces enemy from St. Cômedu- Mont; div then regroups along the Douve with orders to cross in vicinity of Brévands. V Corps secures D Day objectives. 116th Inf of 29th Div and Rangers succeed in relieving hard-pressed units of 2d Ranger Bn on Pointe du Hoe and push on to Grandcamp; 175th Inf continues rapid drive on Isigny and takes it with ease, night 8–9; 115th drives S to the Aure through Longueville. In 1st Div sector, Formigny falls to elements of 18th Inf from Engranville; 26th Inf, making main effort to trap enemy between U.S. and Br bridgeheads, overruns Tour-en-Bessin and, night 8–9, Ste Anne; 16th attempts to block enemy escape from Port-en-Bessin, but enemy retains escape corridor and withdraws bulk of his forces through it, night 8–9.

In Br Second Army’s 30 Corps area, Port-en- Bessin falls to 47th Royal Mar Cdo early in day. 50th Div compresses enemy’s escape corridor in conjunction with U.S. V Corps, taking Sully and château at Fosse Soucy, but pulls back under enemy pressure.

ITALY—AAI: Br 5 Corps, holding Adriatic coastal sector, finds that enemy is withdrawing and moves forward.

In U.S. Fifth Army’s VI Corps area, 133d Inf, leading 34th Div’s pursuit up Highway 1, encounters delaying opposition S of Tarquinia. II Corps, to speed advance, commits 2 TF’s ahead of 85th and 88th Divs—TF Howze on left and TF Ellis (91st Cav Rcn Sq, reinf) on right. Forward elements get to within 6 miles of Viterbo before corps is halted in order to give S African 6th Armd Div right of way. Shift of interarmy boundary to left greatly narrows zone of 88th Div.

In Br Eighth Army’s 13 Corps area, S African 6th Armd Div makes rapid progress toward Orvieto on left flank. E of the Tiber, Br 6th Armd Div encounters enemy positions extending W from Monte Maggiore and is held up at Passo Corese; puts infantry in the lead, night 8–9.

CBI—On Salween front, Ch 88th Div of 71st Army penetrates outer defenses of Lung-ling. Ch 87th Div reaches North Gate of the city and blocks Japanese supply route at Manio Bridge, on Tengchung- Lung-ling road.

NEW GUINEA—Seventh Fleet PT boats begin operating from Mios Woendi. On Biak, 186th Inf of TF HURRICANE improves and consolidates positions in Mokmer airdrome area. 2d Bn of 162d Inf meets heavy fire as it advances E to rejoin parent unit and halts on ridge N of East Caves. 162d Inf completes movement of bulk of its 1st and 3d Bns to Parai. Japanese continue to resist stubbornly in Parai Defile despite pressure from W and E by elements of 163d, 186th, and 162d Regts. Elements of 162d Inf pushing W from Parai toward Mokmer airfield are strongly opposed but reach positions near Mokmer village. In Hollandia–Aitape area, 1st and 2d Bns of 158th Inf, TF TORNADO, with tank support, attack W after brief arty preparation. Considerable resistance develops, but attack progresses to within 1,500 yards of the Tirfoam.

80 Years Ago Wednesday 7 June 1944

USN

Pacific

Naval Advanced Base, Hollandia, New Guinea, is established.

Submarine Harder (SS-257) sinks Japanese destroyer Hayanami as the latter patrols south of the Japanese Fleet anchorage at Tawi Tawi, southeast of Sibitu Passage, Borneo, 04°43'N, 120°03'E.

Submarine Whale (SS-239) damages Japanese transports Shinroku Maru and Sugiyama Maru north-northeast of the Bonins, 31°06'N, 142°34'E.

Remnants of Japanese convoy 3530 reach Saipan, but because of the work of Shark (SS-314) and Pintado (SS-387),the Imperial Army's 118th Regiment arrives at its destination at half-strength, its weapons and equipment at the bottom of the Pacific.

Atlantic

Construction of artificial harbors and sheltered anchorages ("Mulberries") from sunken blockships and concrete caissons begins off Normandy. Off the beach-heads minesweeper Tide (AM-125) is sunk by a mine. As minesweeper Pheasant (AM-61) rescues Tide's survivors, she fouls the stricken minecraft and is damaged, 49°37'N, 01°05'W. Mines also sink transport Susan B. Anthony (AP-72), 49°33'N, 00°49'W, and tank landing craft LCT-458 and LCT-586; motor torpedo boat PT-505 is damaged by a mine, 49°30'N, 01°09'W, and destroyer Harding (DD-625) is damaged when she runs aground, 49°31'N, 00°50'W. U.S. freighter Francis Harrington, in OMAHA Beach-bound convoy EMB 2, is damaged by mine at 50°10'N, 00°40'W, but manages to discharge her cargo and disembark the troops she is bringing to the beachhead, although 6 of the 515 soldiers perish in the mining, There were no other casualties among the men on board, who include a 28-man Armed Guard.

US

Naval Academy Class of 1945 graduates one year early because of the national emergency.

AAF

Eighth AF

AEAF directs air attacks against congested points to delay movement of more enemy forces into assault area. In first mission 402 Heavy Bombers, including 20 Pathfinders, attack targets at Flers, Conde-sur- Noireau, Falaise, Argentan, L’Aigle, and Lisieux. Second mission is directed at Kerlin/Bastard airfield and at bridges, railroad junctions, depots, and station at Nantes, Angers, Tours, and adjacent areas. 498 Heavy Bombers attack; heavy cloud prevents almost 100 others from bombing targets. VIII FC furnishes area support for beachhead areas in early morning and to Heavy Bomber operations at midday and in late afternoon, at the same time maintaining harassment of comm and flying shipping patrol. The fighters encounter about 150 aircraft during the day, destroying 31. Enemy fighters account for 4 fighters lost. Fighter Bomber attacks are flown against about 50 targets, including marshalling yards, sidings, trains, tunnels, bridges, convoys, airfields, and railroads. In almost 1,000 sorties, 25 fighters are lost.

Ninth AF

600-plus Medium Bombers hit bridges, junctions, trestles, coastal and field batteries, and marshalling yards in France in support of invasion. Over 1,100 fighters support ground troops by dive bombing and strafing, escort Medium Bombers and transports, and make sweeps throughout the battle area as Bayeux is liberated and the BayeuxCaen road is cut. 400-plus C-47’s, C-53’s, and gliders resupply paratroops in the assault area.

Twelfth AF

Weather hampers Medium Bomber operation but several rail and road bridges and viaducts are attacked. Fighter Bombers blast retreating motor transport and troops, and hit bridges N of Rome. Numerous vehicles are destroyed immediately N of Rome and especially in Subiaco area near Rome. Many hits are scored on roads and railroads, and several railroad cars and gun emplacements are destroyed. US Fifth Army captures Civitavecchia.

Fifteenth AF

Fifteenth AF reaches its planned operational strength of 21 Heavy Bomber groups and 7 fighter groups as 332d FG (P- 47) begins operations. 340 B-17’s and B-24’s, some with fighter cover, hit Leghorn dock and harbor installations, Voltri shipyards, Savona railroad junction, and Vado Ligure marshalling yard, Antheor viaduct, and Var R bridge. 42 P-38’s bomb Recco viaduct and 32 P-47’s fly uneventful sweep over Ferrara-Bologna area.

Tenth AF

11 B-24’s bomb Wuntho and Kalemyo. 9 B-25’s hit Wuntho-Shwebo railroad and bridge at Thityabin. Other B-25’s continue flying ammo to Imphal. A few P-51’s hit Lachigahtawng.

Fourteenth AF

10 B-25’s bomb Lashio and targets of opportunity along Salween front. 3 B-25’s and 15 Fighter Bombers bomb tank concentrations at Taying, destroy several locomotives at Linfen, and pound railroad yards at Chenghsien. P-40’s and B-25’s strafe sampans at Ft Bayard and sink a schooner off Nampang I. 2 rocket-firing P-40’s damage processing building at carbide mines at Na Duong.

Fifth AF

B-25’s bomb Biak I, hitting gun positions near Bosnik, airstrip at Sorido, and Borokoe road. A-20’s hit shipping in Manokwari area. B-25’s blast supply areas near Orai R. Fighter Bombers and A-20’s continue pounding Wewak-Hansa Bay coast. Thirteenth Air TF B-24’s hit various targets on Truk Atoll (weather permits only 10 of 48-airplane force to reach target area).

Thirteenth AF

All scheduled strikes in Rabaul area are weathered out. P-39’s and P-38’s hit several targets of opportunity on Bougainville, including occupied areas at Monoitu.

Seventh AF

B-25’s from Makin bomb Ponape

USA

FRANCE—21 Army Group: U.S. First Army continues attack toward D Day objectives. Gen Eisenhower, visiting the front, orders VII and V Corps to make speedy junction through Isigny and Carentan. VII Corps gives 101st A/B Div task of clearing Carentan. V Corps makes 29th Div responsible for seizing Isigny. In VII Corps area, 4th Div, with 22d Inf on right and 12th on left, drives northward toward line Quinéville–Montebourg until halted by strong opposition from permanent fortifications at Crisbecq and Azeville; 8th Inf columns converge on Ste Mère-Eglise, where they assist elements of 82d A/B Div in throwing back major enemy counterattack from N. Tanks of 10th and 746th Tank Bns also give valuable assistance. Other elements of 82d A/B Div clear E bank of the Merderet but are violently opposed at La Fire bridge across it and are unable to relieve isolated elements W of the river. 82d A/B Div is strengthened by arrival of 325th Gli Inf Regt in gliders and by sea. Seaborne elements (1st Bn) move forward with 8th Inf of 4th Div; the other bns are committed at La Fière and N of Ste Mère-Eglise. To S, 101st A/B Div units on N bank of the Douve temporarily suspend efforts to establish bridgeheads but receive surrender of enemy detachments from Le Port and La Barquette; 506th Para Inf ( — 3d Bn) moves S from Culoville to reconnoiter in force toward the Douve but is stopped near St Côme-du-Mont. V Corps continues toward initial objectives with 29th Div on right and 1st on left. 116th Inf of 29th Div and Rangers are clearing bluffs on V Corps right f lank; relief force pushing toward Rangers on Pointe du Hoe reaches St Pierre-du-Mont area. 175th Inf of 29th Div, upon landing, is given task of taking Isigny; moving between 116th and 115th Regts, advances quickly along Longueville–Isigny road, taking La Cambe before dawn of 8th; 115th Inf clears St Laurent region and pushes SW toward Louviéres and Montigny. Elements of 26th Inf, 1st Div, on right flank of div, make futile attempt to reach Formigny; 18th Inf, in center, thrusts to En-granville, Mandeville, and Mosles; 16th, on left, takes Huppain. Enemy retains narrow corridor between U.S. and Br bridgeheads along Drome R to its junction with Aure R. 2d Div begins landing in evening.

In Br Second Army’s 30 Corps area, 50th Div overruns Bayeux and gets 2 regts S of Bayeux–Caen highway. 47th Royal Mar Cdo begins battle for Port-en-Bessin in afternoon. In 1 Corps area, Cdn 3d Div brig pushes S of Bayeux–Caen highway.

ITALY—AAI: Gen Alexander issues new orders for pursuit of enemy. U.S. Fifth Army is to advance to general area Pisa–Lucca–Pistoia, while Eighth Army is to push toward line Florence–Bibbiena– Arezzo as rapidly as possible. 5 Corps is to remain on the defensive in Adriatic coastal sector. 2 Pol Corps will be committed only if enemy cannot be cleared from Ancona.

In U.S. Fifth Army’s VI Corps area, 168th Inf of 34th Div, advancing through night 6–7, seizes Civitavecchia and its port, 40 miles NW of Rome. This port, although damaged, soon becomes valuable in supplying assault forces.

In Br Eighth Army area, 13 Corps shifts axis of advance from N to NW. S African 6th Armd Div, followed by 78th Div, turns toward Orvieto, important road center, on Viterbo–Bagnoregio road. E of the Tiber, Br 6th Armd Div swings toward Terni instead of Rieti.

CBI—In NCAC area, Chinese commanders call Gen Boatner’s attention to the dangerously reduced strength of Chinese forces in Myitkyina area. Limited operations are continued there while preparations are being made for offensive on 10th.

On Salween front, Ch 88th Div of 71st Army reaches East Gate of Lung-ling. Ch 87th Div, moving along Burma Road, is approaching the city.

NEW GUINEA—On Biak, 186th Inf, assisted by arty and aircraft, drives quickly across Mokmer airfield to beach without opposition, but Japanese then subject entire area to intense fire. Supply of 186th Inf by sea is begun under fire. 162d Inf begins movement by sea of bulk of its troops in coastal sector to Mokmer airdrome via Parai in order to exert pressure against Parai Defile from Was well as E and open it to coastal traffic. Limited effort is being made against Ibdi Pocket area. Enemy’s East Caves position, E of Mokmer airfield, is being neutralized by fire. In Hollandia–Aitape area, 2d Bn joins 1st Bn of 158th Inf, TF TORNADO, in Tor R bridgehead. Both patrol uneventfully toward Maffin No. 1. In TF PERSECUTION’S sector, Japanese become active about 1,300 yards W of Afua on Afua–Palauru supply line. Gap exists in outer defense line along the Driniumor, where regrouping is conducted. 1st Bn, 128th Inf, replaces 1st Bn, 126th, in N part of line.

U.S.—Gen Marshall rejects request, made by Gen Stilwell at instigation of Chiang Kai-shek and Gen Chennault, that B–29 stocks be used by Fourteenth Air Force in the event of an emergency in China.