(Jan. 27, 2023) This week, 80 years ago, the President of the United States, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, met the President of Brazil, Getúlio Vargas, aboard the USS Humboldt.
(Jan. 20, 2023) This week, 80 years ago, the movie “Casablanca” began appearing in cinemas across the country. It was released at that time to take advantage of the publicity generated by the meeting of the American president and the British Prime Minister, and their military staffs, in Casa…
(Jan. 13, 2023) This week, 80 years ago, the Casablanca Conference opened in Casablanca, Morocco.
(Jan. 6, 2023) This week, 80 years ago, the Red Army methodically began the destruction of the Second Hungarian Army, commanded by Col.-Gen. Vitez (Count) Gusztáv Jány.
(Dec. 23, 2022) This week 80 years ago, French Adm. Jean François Darlan was assassinated.
(Dec. 16, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, Field Marshal Erich von Manstein launched Operation Winter Storm with Armeegruppe Don, which consisted of the German Fourth Panzerarmee, commanded by Hermann Hoth, Panzergruppe Hollidt, and Fourth Rumanian Army, commanded by Constantin Constantinescu-…
(Dec. 9, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the Red Army was engaged in the destruction of the Eighth Italian Army, or “Armata Italiana in Russia —ARMIR.”
(Dec. 2, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, soldiers of the British 2nd Parachute Battalion linked with American GIs near Medjez el Bab, in northern Tunisia. The British paratroopers had been dropped at, and had captured, Depienne Airfield on Dec. 3, 1942.
(Nov. 25, 2022) Eighty years ago today, the Army-Navy game was played in Annapolis for the first, and only, time since 1893. In that game, Joseph M. Reeves (later admiral) wore the first football helmet.
(Nov. 18, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, Benghazi, Libya’s second largest city, was occupied by the Allies. That day, Hitler ordered Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, commander of Panzerarmee Afrika, to hold a position at Mersa el Brega, “... at all cost,” calling it the, “... springboard of a new…
By Hon. William Newton Jackson III
(Nov. 4, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, 1,400 Allied ships transported 107,000 soldiers, most of whom were Americans, to attack the French colonies of Morocco and Algeria in North Africa.
(Oct. 28, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the Allied Eighth Army, commanded by Gen. Bernard Law Montgomery (“Monty”), launched an attack against the Italian-German Panzerarmee Afrika.
(Oct. 21, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, ships of the Imperial Japanese Navy met those of the U. S. Navy, in the Battle of Santa Cruz Islands. The battle is sometimes referred to as the Battle of Santa Cruz, or in Japanese sources as the Battle of the South Pacific.
(Oct. 14, 2022) STALINGRAD! Let he who has never heard the name, or does not understand its import, hang his head in shame. For it was there, on the banks of the Volga River, in the city named for Josef Stalin, that the fate of the world was decided. It is the most famous battle of World War…
This week 80 years ago, ships of the U.S. Navy engaged ships of the Imperial Japanese Navy in the Battle of Cape Esperance.
(Sept. 30, 2022) Eighty years ago today, Hans-Joaquin Marseille was leading his flight of Messerschmitt Bf-109G-2 fighters on an escort mission over Egypt, covering the withdrawal of a group of Ju-87 Stuka dive bombers that had been attacking British positions near Alam Halfa.
(Sept. 23, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the German armed auxiliary raider Steir was sunk in a battle with the American armed Liberty cargo ship Stephen Hopkins, which was also sunk during the gun battle.
(Sept. 16, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the capital of the French colony of Madagascar, Tananarive was captured by Commonwealth forces and the event celebrated with a victory parade.
(Sept. 9, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the RMS Laconia was sunk by U-156, commanded by Kapitänleutnant Werner Hartenstein, off the west coast of Africa between Liberia and Ascension Island.
(Sept. 2, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the German Seventeenth Army, commanded by Richard Ruoff, captured the Black Sea port of Novorossiysk. Today, Novorossiysk has a population of 275,795.
(Aug. 26, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, Germany’s vaunted “Desert Fox” threw the dice one last time.
(Aug. 19, 2022) Today, 80 years ago, the Allies launched a raid on German-occupied France at the port of the small port of Dieppe with devastating results — for the Allies.
(Aug. 12, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, a British convoy was steaming east through the Mediterranean to the relief of the beleaguered Island of Malta. Malta, now an independent republic, is located 50 miles south of Sicily and 207 miles north of Libya in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea.
(Aug. 5, 2022) This week 80 years ago, the City of Maykop was captured by Axis forces in their search for oil. Today it is a city of 144,000 and is the capital of the Republic of Adygeya, in the Russian Federation. The city is located on the Belaya River about 1,100 miles south of Moscow, ea…
(July 29, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the extermination camp at Treblinka became fully operational. The camp was located 62 miles northeast of Warsaw, near the village of Makilnia Górna, in Poland. Today, the village has a population of about 6,000. There had been a forced labor camp in o…
(July 22, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, an Allied Arctic convoy carrying supplies bound for the port of Murmansk in the Soviet Union was attacked by German U-boats and torpedo planes of the Luftwaffe.
(July 15, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the Ukrainian soccer team, F.C. - Start defeated a German army soccer team, PGS, and the Hungarian Army soccer team, MSG Wal, twice, at Zenith Stadium in Kyiv, Ukraine.
(July 8, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, Panzerarmee Afrika, commanded by Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, and the Allied Eighth Army, commanded by Claude Auchinleck (“the Auk”) met for the first time at El Alamein.
(July 1, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the second Siege of Sevastopol came to an end when the last Soviet defenders finally surrendered to Gen. Eric von Manstein’s Eleventh Army, on July 4, 1942. The siege had lasted 250 days.
(June 24, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the Italian Duce had just written a letter to the German Führer asking for fuel for the Regia Marina Italia for the coming invasion of Malta —Operation Herkules.
(June 17, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the Royal Air Force was preparing to launch its third, and final, “Thousand Plane Raid” — code named Operation Millennium — against the Fatherland.
(June 10, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, British Prime Minister, Sir Winston Churchill, was in Washington for the hastily arranged Second Washington Conference. At a meeting at the White House between the president, the prime minister and the brass of the two militaries, President Franklin D…
(June 3, 2022) Eighty years ago today, the Imperial Japanese Navy and the American Navy clashed in the decisive Battle of Midway. Shortly after Japan’s successful strike upon Pearl Harbor, Japanese Adm. Isoroku Yamamoto, the mastermind of the attack, was quoted as saying, “I fear all we have…
May 27, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, Panzerarmee Afrika, commanded by General Erwin Rommel, began its assault on the Allied defensive line, which stretched from the village of Ain el Gazala in Libya, on the Mediterranean coast, 45 miles southwest into the desert, where it was anchored at a…
(May 20, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, 59-year-old Lt. Gen. “Vinegar” Joe Stilwell walked out of the jungles of Burma to India to escape capture by the Japanese.
(May 13, 2022) This week 80 years ago, the Second Battle of Kharkov (Kharkiv in Ukrainian) began.
(May 6, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the first naval battle exclusively between aircraft carriers occurred in the Coral Sea. The Coral Sea is a large expanse of ocean northeast of Australia.
(April 29, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, the Imperial Japanese Army captured the Burmese city of Mandalay and the town of Lashio, the jumping off point for the Burma Road to China.
(April 22, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, Lt. Gen. Jonathan M. Wainwright IV surrendered the island of Corregidor in Manila Bay, and all Allied forces in the Philippines. The island is about 2.21 square miles and is about 30 miles from Manila.
(April 15, 2022) As we approach mid-April 2022, there is only one combined U.S. Navy and American Army Air Corps exploit that even now elicits such great respect and gratefulness on both sides of the Pacific. That is the famous Doolittle Raid of April 18, 1942.
(April 8, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, Maj. Gen. Edward P. King Jr. surrendered a combined force of 75,000 starving American and Filipino soldiers that were defending the Bataan Peninsula, on Luzon Island, in the Philippines.
(April 1, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, German submarine U-552, commanded by Kapitain-Lieutenant Erich Topp, sank the SS David H. Atwater off the coast of Assateague, Virginia. The U-552 was 17 months old, and based in St. Nazaire, France. Its captain had already received the Knight’s Cross.
(March 25, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, saw the Red Army’s most intensive efforts to reduce the “Demyansk Pocket.” The “Demyansk Pocket” came about as a result of the Red Army’s Winter Offensive, which began on Dec. 6, 1941. After the Soviets had driven Armeegruppe Center, commanded by Fie…
(March 18, 2022) This week 80 years ago, Congress enacted legislation that made, " . . . it a misdemeanor knowingly to disregard restrictions made applicable by a military commander to persons in a military area prescribed by him as such, all as authorized by an Executive Order of the Presid…
(March 11, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, American General, and Philippine Field Marshal Douglas MacArthur left the Philippines, and his troops, with his wife, son, son’s nanny, and staff on a PT boat, which took them to an American airbase on the island of Mindanao, from whence they were fl…
(March 4, 20222) This week, 80 years ago, the Burmese capital of Rangoon (now Yangon) was captured by the Japanese Fifteenth Army, commanded by Shōjirō Iida, after the British had evacuated. At the time, its population was 500,000. Today, it is 10 times that!
(Feb. 25, 2022) Six different battles make up what is called the “Java Sea Campaign.” They include (1) Macassar Strait, also known as Balikpapan, on Jan. 23-24, (2) Madoera Strait on Feb. 4, (3) Banka Island on Feb. 13-14, (4) Badoeng Strait on Feb. 20, (5) Java Sea on Feb. 27, and (6) Sunda…
(Feb. 18, 2022) Annually, millions of air travelers pass through Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. Doubtless, few are aware of the origin of the name of the facility that is helping speed them to their destinations. Fewer still are aware of the role of one Alphonse Capone in its name.
(Feb. 11, 2022) A huge German warship steaming up the English Channel under the very nose of the world’s most powerful navy? Absurd! In broad daylight? Impossible! Three huge German warships? Unbelievable? Believe it, because it happened this week, 80 years ago! And the British knew it was coming!
(Feb. 4, 2022) This week, 80 years ago, soldiers of the Twenty-Fifth Imperial Japanese Army under the command of Tomyuki Yamashita (“the Tiger of Malaya”) landed on the North Shore of the island city of Singapore. A week later “the Gibralter of the East” surrendered.