Wednesday, May 22, 2024

80 Years Ago Today, Tuesday 23 May 1944



TG 58.3 (Rear Admiral Alfred E. Montgomery) planes bomb Japanese installations on Wake Island.

Destroyer escort England sinks Japanese submarine RO-104, 250 miles north-northwest of Kavieng, 01°26'N,149°20'E.

Submarine Cero (SS-225) sinks Japanese army cargo ship Taijun Maru and teams with Ray (SS-271) to torpedo and damage army tanker Kenwa Maru off Halmahera Island, 02°42'N, 128°08'E.

Submarine Raton (SS-270) sinks Japanese merchant vessel Koshin Maru west of Borneo, 00°25'S, 107°34'E.

PB4Y damages Japanese cargo vessel Hakko Maru near Helen Reef, 00°25'S, 107°34'E.


Light cruiser

Brooklyn (CL-40) and destroyers Kearny (DD-432) and Ericsson (DD-440) shell enemy positions invicinity of Ardea, Italy, with good results. The three ships repeat bombardment of troop concentrations and supply dumps on 24 and 26 May with equal success.

Light cruiser

Philadelphia (CL-41) and destroyer Laub (DD-613) are damaged in collision 20 miles southwest of Nettuno, Italy, 41°11'N, 12°30'E.

Submarine chaser PC-626 captures German speedboat off Anzio and takes crew prisoner.


Eighth AF

804 B-17’s and B-24’s bomb tgts at Hamburg, Saarbrucken, Metz, Epinal, Bayon, Chaumont, Etampes, Chateaudun, Caen/Carpiquet, Bourges, Avord, and Orleans/Bricy. Ftr opposition is very light; one bmr is downed by AA fire.

Ninth AF

In predawn mission 15 B-26’s bomb A/F at Beaumont-le-Roger. During afternoon 58 B-26’s bomb coastal batteries at Etretat/ Sainte-Marie-Au-Bosc, Maisy, and Mont Fleury. Over 120 P-38’s strafe and bomb rolling stock in C France.

Twelfth AF

MBs abort missions because of weather. LBs hit comm between Cisterna di Roma and Campoleone. FBs actively spt general offensive of Allied ground forces in Liri Valley and at Anzio where US and British forces break out of the beachhead. Ftrs on armed rcn join in the attacks and numerous enemy vehicles, gun positions, transport routes, and personnel are hit hard in areas in and around Terracina, Littoria, Norma, Marcigliana, Fara in Sabina, Borghetto, Arezzo, and Civita Castellena. M/Y on Empoli- Siena line is hit also.

Fifteenth AF

300-plus B-17’s and B-24’s concentrate attacks on troop concentrations and comm in rear of battle area, at Avezzano, Subiaco, Valmontone, Marino, Nemi and Grottaferrata. P-38’s and P-51’s provide escort. Other P-38’s, covered by P-47’s, strafe A /F at Ferrara.

Tenth AF

12 P-38’s bomb Tiddim road and 32 A-31’s bomb Kohima, Tiddim, and Kalewa. 12 B-24’s bomb Indaw M/Y and Homalin. 16 P-38’s attack Kangaung A/F. 23 P-40’s and 4 A-36’s bomb gun positions, troops, and supply dumps in Myitkyina area.

Fifth AF

B-24’s hit Manokwari while B-24’s, A-20’s, and P-38’s hit tgts at Biak I, including trucks at Borokoe, AA positions and control tower at Mokmer A/F, village of Sorido, and offshore tgts at Bransfari. P-40’s hit troops on Wakde and on Biri R. P-38’s spt ground forces in Aitape area. A-20’s, P-39’s, B-24’s, and B- 25’s maintain bombing and strafing of Wewak-Hansa Bay area.

Thirteenth AF

2 B-24’s bomb Tobera, while 32 B-25’s and 40-plus P-39’s, P-38’s, and P-40’s attack gun positions near Rabaul, near Lakunai, and in vicinity of Tunnel Hill Road. In Bougainville area 51 P-39’s and 8 P- 40’s attack huts, barges, bridges, and other T/Os at several locations.

Seventh AF

Makin-based B-25’s strike Jaluit. B-24’s returning from Los Negros, where they landed after raid on Rota on 21 May, bomb Ponape.


NEW GUINEA—RCT 158 relieves elements of 163d Inf at Tor R mouth and begins westward drive toward Sarmi. 3d Bn is pinned down on coastal track some 400 yards E of Maffin No. I. 1st Bn crosses the Tor to assist, but darkness prevents it from joining in battle. In Aitape sector, Nyaparake Force continues to fall back, elements reaching Tadji. TF HURRICANE holds limited rehearsal for Biak.

CBI—In NCAC area, Marauders at Charpate, Burma, withstand strong enemy attack.

On Salween front, Japanese drive Chinese from hill positions on S flank.

ITALY—AAI: Opens general offensive. In U.S. Fifth Army’s VI Corps area, Operation BUFFALO— attack to break out of Anzio beachhead—begins at 0630 after arty and air preparation. While 45th Div on extreme left conducts holding action, main body of VI Corps attacks enemy’s Cisterna defense line. On left, 1st Armd Div, employing CCA on left and CCB on right, gets forward elements beyond the RR. In center, 3d Div, with elements of 3 regts in assault, meets strongest opposition but gets about half way to Cisterna. 1st SSF, followed by elements of 133d Inf, 34th Div, attacks on right along Mussolini Canal to RR but falls back to Highway 7 under counterattack. Almost 1,500 prisoners are taken during day. On left flank in II Corps area, 85th Div’s 337th Inf pushes slowly down M. S. Croce to outskirts of Terracina; 338th presses steadily toward M. Lenano; 339th seizes Sonnino. In 88th Div sector, 350th Inf reaches Roccasecca. FEC attacks to prevent enemy withdrawal from Liri Valley; makes slow progress since enemy is intent on holding until withdrawal of Hitler Line can be completed. Mtn Corps relieves 88th Div of II Corps on M. Chiavino and seizes M. Pizzuto. 2d Moroccan Div attacks from S. Oliva area toward Pastena and 3d Algerian Div from Pico toward Ceprano against determined resistance. 1st Motorized Div guards right flank along the Liri.

Br Eighth Army opens general assault against Hitler Line. Cdn 1 Corps, employing Cdn 1st Div, pushes toward Aquino–Pontecorvo road, penetrating enemy’s defense line. Cdn 5th Armd Div is ordered to attack through the gap.


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