Yesterday                    Tomorrow

February 3rd, 1939 (FRIDAY)

UNITED KINGDOM: IRA terrorists bomb two underground stations in London.

Anti-Aircraft cruiser HMS Naiad launched.

CANADA: The first group of Canadian volunteers from the Spanish Civil War return to Halifax. There is a great controversy over whether they should have even been allowed back in the country. By fighting in the Mackenzie-Papineau Battalion the volunteers broke Canadian law prohibiting enlistment in foreign armies. Of the 1,148 men who went overseas to fight against fascism, 721 will finally return home.

COMMONWEALTH OF THE PHILIPPINES: General Douglas MacArthur asks the War Department to lend more ordnance and equipment for the training of the Philippine Army.  The request was declined. (Marc Small)

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3 February 1940

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February 3rd, 1940 (SATURDAY)

Whitby: A Heinkel He-111 bomber is the first German plane shot down over England.

RAF Fighter Command: Enemy aircraft
attack shipping off the East coast. Two enemy aircraft are destroyed. 1 British ship is set on fire; 1 Norwegian ship is sunk; 12 seamen are killed. 2 more German bombers severely damaged.

Minesweeper HMS Sphinx under the command of Cdr. John Robert Newton Taylor, was sweeping an area 15 miles north of Kinnairds Head when attacked by enemy aircraft. A bomb pierced the forecastle deck and exploding; destroying the fore part of the ship. She remained afloat and was taken in tow by HMS Halcyon but steadily flooded and capsized and sank at 57 57N 02 00W. The wreck was later washed ashore north of Lybster and was sold for scrap. The commanding officer and forty of the men were killed in the explosion. (Alex Gordon and Dave Shirlaw)(108)

FINLAND: In Soviet air raids 10 were killed and 14 wounded at Seinäjoki, and 34 killed and 38 wounded at Kuopio.

GIBRALTAR: After being stopped by a French auxiliary patrol vessel yesterday, the U.S. passenger liner SS Manhattan is detained at Gibraltar by British authorities. 


At 1432, SS Armanistan in Convoy OG-16 was torpedoed and sunk by U-25 west of the River Tagus, Portugal. The crew was rescued by the Spanish SS Monte Abril and landed at Tenerife.

At 0936, SS Reet was hit by one torpedo from U-58 and sank within four minutes. She was reported missing after leaving Methil on 31 January. The ship had been first spotted at 2035 hours the day before and was chased by the U-boat, which had missed with the first two torpedoes at 0215 and 0452 hours.



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Yesterday             Tomorrow


3 February 1941

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February 3rd, 1941 (MONDAY)


Minesweeping trawler HMS Flotta launched.

Corvettes HMS Abelia and Violet commissioned.

Minesweeper HMS Blackpool commissioned.

GERMANY: The German battle cruisers Scharnhorst and Gneisenau break out of the North Sea into the Atlantic under the command of Admiral Lutjens.

Berlin: The Army General Staff presents detailed plans to Hitler for Operation Barbarossa. Halder estimates that the Russians have about 155 Divisions; German strength is about the same but 'far superior in quality'. Hitler is convinced of Halder's plan and exclaims:

"When Barbarossa commences, the world will hold its breath and make no comment!"

Hitler outlines his main aim to be "to gain possession of the Baltic States and Leningrad", with the Ukraine in second place.

U-432 launched.

U.S.S.R.: Soviet submarine K-21 commissioned.

ETHIOPIA: The battle of Keren begins, a protracted and bloody siege.

CHINA: Japanese forces occupy Tamshin, east of Canton.

TERRITORY OF HAWAII:  During routine exercises in the Hawaiian Operating Area off Oahu, destroyers USS Dale (DD-353) and USS Hull (DD-350) contact what they believe is a submarine. With all U.S. boats accounted for, Commander Destroyers Battle Force orders USS Lamson (DD-367) to join Dale and Hull. The ships are to maintain contact and to take offensive action only if attacked. USS Mahan  (DD-364) joins in the search as well. With speculation that the only possible reason a submarine would be in those waters would be to obtain supplies or land agents, USS Lamson accordingly searches the shoreline east of Diamond Head. 

U.S.A.: Washington: Secretary Morgenthau has testified to the House that "the British ceased buying aircraft, arms and other munitions a month ago because of lack of dollars."

Navy Department General Order No. 143 creates three independent fleets, each commanded by an admiral. Admiral Husband E. Kimmel becomes Commander in Chief U.S. Pacific Fleet (and also Commander in Chief U.S. Fleet in the event that two or more fleets operate together); Patrol Force U.S. Fleet becomes U.S. Atlantic Fleet under command of Admiral Ernest J. King; Admiral Thomas C. Hart continues as Commander in Chief U.S. Asiatic Fleet.
    Jimmy Dorsey and his orchestra recorded the classic, "Amapola," on Decca Records. Helen O’Connell and Bob Eberly joined in a vocal duet on this very famous and popular song of the Big Band era. 

The 29th Infantry Division is mobilised into Federal service and moved to Fort Meade. ( Nick Minecci )


SS Amerikaland sunk by U-106 at 36.36N, 74.10W. Five killed.

At 0145, SS Empire Citizen, a straggler from Convoy OB-279, was torpedoed and sunk by U-107 SW of Iceland. The master, 64 crewmembers, one gunner and 12 passengers were lost. Four crewmembers and one gunner were picked up by corvette HMS Clarkia and landed at Londonderry.

At 2333, ocean boarding vessel HMS Crispin, dispersed from Convoy OB-279, was torpedoed and damaged by U-107 NNW of Rockall. The vessel foundered the following day in 56°52N/20°22W. The commander, 120 officers and ratings were picked up by HMS Harvester, the sole escort of the ship and landed at Liverpool.

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3 February 1942

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February 3rd, 1942 (TUESDAY)


Destroyer HS Adrias (ex-HMS Border) launched.

Destroyer HMS Goathland launched.

ÉIRE: Dublin: Eire will need 250,000 soldiers, many more than at present, to defend its neutrality, says the prime minister, Eamon de Valera. Speaking at Kildare he predicted that the war would continue for at least four more years.

"The war has only just begun," he asserted. "It will become more fierce. In all probability Ireland will be more and more cut off. We should be able to defend ourselves militarily. If you are attacked by one it is almost certain you will be attacked by the other side."

The arrival of American troops in Northern Ireland has provoked fears in Dublin that the Americans might assist the British in an invasion to secure the Atlantic bases now denied them. The watchful Germans maintain a full diplomatic mission in Dublin.


U-165 commissioned.

U.S.S.R.:  German forces of Army Group Centre launch a counterattack at Vjasma, cutting off and encircling several Soviet divisions. 

LIBYA:  The British evacuate Derna. 

INDIAN OCEAN: Port T, a top secret British naval base on Addu Atoll, becomes operational.

BURMA: Chinese Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek agrees to let the Chinese 5th Army take over the Toungoo front and the balance of the Chinese 6th Army is ordered to move into Burma. The Indian 48th Brigade is ordered to the zone of the Indian 17th Division,  under which it is to fight. 
     Pilots of the 2d Fighter Squadron, American Volunteer Group (AVG, aka, “The Flying Tigers”) shoot down a Japanese Army bomber over Toungoo Airdrome at 1600 hours local. 

NETHERLANDS EAST INDIES: The Japanese begin preinvasion air attacks on Java. Japanese Navy aircraft from Kendari on Celebes Island attack Soerabaja, Madionen, and Malang. While returning to base, the crew of a Japanese aircraft reports the presence of Allied naval off Madoera.

At Singosari Airdrome, four fully loaded USAAF Far East Air Force (FEAF) B-17s are destroyed and a fifth B-17 is shot down. Three Royal Netherlands Navy Catalina flying boats are destroyed at Soerabaja and a FEAF B-18 Bolo bringing radar technicians from Australia to Java is shot down with the loss of everyone aboard the aircraft.

At the fighter base, Blimbing Airdrome, FEAF P-40s are unable to climb to altitude to intercept the bombers but they manage to shoot down two Japanese fighters and a bomber vs. one P-40 lost. 

COMMONWEALTH OF THE PHILIPPINES: On Bataan, the II Corps, finding the enemy bridgehead clear, advances the outpost line in that sector. I Corps continues to make little headway against enemy pockets in sectors of the 1st and 11th Divisions, Philippine Army. In the South Sector, Philippine Scouts and tanks are still unable to make much progress against the Quinauan Point beachhead. Progress is also limited in Anyasan-Silaiim sector although tanks of the U.S. 192d Tank Battalion and artillery assist the Scouts there. 
     The submarine USS Trout (SS-202) unloads 3,500 rounds of ammunition; refuels; loads two torpedoes, and requests additional ballast. Since neither sandbags nor sacks of concrete are available, she is given 20 tons of gold bars and silver pesos to be evacuated from the Philippines. She also loads securities, mail, and State Department dispatches before submerging shortly before daybreak to wait at the bottom in Manila Bay until the return of darkness. She gets underway that night using the gold as ballast on the return voyage to Pearl Harbor.  

NEW GUINEA: Japanese aircraft bomb Port Moresby.

AUSTRALIA: Thirteen P-40s of the USAAF Far East Air Force’s 20th Pursuit Squadron (Provisional) depart Darwin, Northern Territory, for Java. 

CANADA:   The Canadian Women’s Auxiliary Air Force is renamed the Royal Canadian Air Force (Women’s Division). 

U.S.A.: The major league baseball club owners hold a special meeting to discuss wartime regulations, they decide to allow 14 night games for each club, with the Washington Senators allowed 21. Two All-Star Games will be played, one with a military All-Star team. Curfews are set for night games with no inning to start after 0050 hours local. 

Destroyer USS Fitch commissioned.

ATLANTIC OCEAN: A Panamanian freighter, the San Gil, is torpedoed, shelled, and sunk by German submarine U-103 approximately 15 miles (24 kilometres) south of Fenwick Island light located on the Delaware/Maryland border in the U.S. 

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3 February 1943

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February 3rd, 1943 (WEDNESDAY)


Destroyer HMS Talybont launched.

Frigate HMS Bentinck launched.

Destroyer HMS Solebay laid down.

London: Associated Press announces:

London, Wednesday, Feb. 3 -- The Red Army has completed the destruction of 330,000 trapped troops at Stalingrad, the flower of Adolf Hitler's army, Moscow announced last night in a special bulletin. This raised the Russians' announced toll of Axis casualties on the Volga since last Fall to more than 500,000 in dead and captured alone.

The communiqué, recorded here by the Soviet monitor, said 91,000 troops, including a field marshal, twenty-three generals and thousands of other officers, had surrendered in the last three weeks.

An announcement on Sunday said more than 100,000 had been killed in twenty days, and a communiqué last Dec. 31 said 175,000 had been killed and 137,650 captured in the preceding six-week period, beginning with the big Red Army Winter offensive on Nov. 19.

Casualties Exceed 500,000

This represents a total of 503,650 Axis troops killed or captured since mid-November, on the basis of Russian announcements, and it does not include Axis casualties in the preceding three months of bitter fighting that raged along the Volga and inside Stalingrad.

The German radio last night acknowledged the end of the trapped Nazi army, but said the battle had cost the Russians more than 300,000 men.

Russia's victory at Stalingrad released additional Red Army divisions for heavier blows 250 miles to the west, where the Russians are pushing into the Ukraine toward Kharkov and threatening Rostov on the Sea of Azov.

The midnight bulletin announced continuing Red Army victories in those drives. Pokrovskoe and Nizhni Duvanka, two towns above captured Svatovo on the Kupy-ansk-VoroshiloThe midnight bulletin announced continuing Red Army victories in those drives. Pokrovskoe and Nizhni Duvanka, two towns above captured Svatovo on the Kupy-ansk-Voroshilo<WBR>vgrad railway in the Ukraine, fell In the Caucasus the Russians advancing up the Tikhoretsk-Rostov railway occupied Pavlovsk, only seventy-five miles below Rostov. Other units wheeling south-westward from Tikhoretsk captured Korenovsk, only thirty-five miles from Krasnoday. Another Russian column is within forty miles of Rostov in a drive paralleling the thrust from Tikhoretsk.

Aside from the huge territorial strides of the Russians, the destruction of Axis troops and equipment was regarded as even more important in the Allied fight to force the Nazis to their knees.

More than 2,500 officers were captured, the Russians said. Field Marshal General Friedrich Paulus, commander of the Nazi Sixth Army, surrendered last Sunday with fifteen Axis generals. Last night's bulletin announced that Col.

Gen. Walther Heitz, commander of the Eighth Army Corps; Lieut. Gen. Streicher, commander of the Eleventh Corps, and innumerable other officers had put down their arms.

The Soviet bulletin said "trophies are still being counted in one of the biggest battles in the history of wars," but listed this booty as captured since Jan. 10, when the final push began:

Fifty-six locomotives, 1,125 railway cars, 750 planes, 1,150 tanks, 6,700 guns, 1,462 mortars, 8,135 machine guns, 90,000 rifles, 61,102 trucks, 7,369 motor cycles, 480 carts, tractors and transports; 320 radio transmitters, three armored trains, 235 ammunition and arms dumps and a large amount of other equipment.

The Moscow radio said Marshal Nikolai N. Voronof and Co. Gen. Konstantin Rokossovsky, the Red Army leaders, sent a message to Premier Joseph Stalin at 6:30 P. M., saying: "Carrying out your order, troops on the Don front at 4 P.M., Feb. 2, finished the rout and annihilation of encircled enemy troops at Stalingrad."

Then Premier Stalin issued the following order:

Order of the day by the Supreme Commander in Chief to the troops of the Don


To the representative of the Supreme Commander in Chief, Marshal of Artill ery, Comrade Voronoff; to the commander of the troops on the Don front, Col.

Gen. Rokossovsky:

I congratulate you and the troops of the Don front on your successful carrying out of the liquidation of the encircled enemy troops at Stalingrad. I express my gratitude to the commanders of the Red Army men and the political workers of the Don front for their excellent military activities.

The Supreme Commander in Chief,

J. Stalin

The city named for Mr. Stalin already was trying to make the skeleton ruins of the town livable again. Sappers were clearing the streets of mines imbedded in broken pavements and side walks as the Axis prisoners, dirty, ragged, hungry and half-frozen, awaited transfer to concentration camps.

The siege of Stalingrad began last Aug. 25. It was the highwater mark of the

1942 offensive that rolled eastward from the Kurks-Kharkov-The siege of Stalingrad began last Aug. 25. It was the highwater mark of the 1942 offensive that rolled eastward Tonight Soviet troops not only had broken the last resistance at Stanlingrad but were advancing far to the west over ground where they had themselves retreated in the early days of last Summer's Nazi push.

Both sides undoubtedly suffered heavily in the long bitter battle of attrition. Premier Stalin said once that the first sixty days of siege cost the Germans 100,000 men, 1,000 planes and 8,000 tanks. On Sept. 30, Herr Hitler declared the city would be conquered and said "you may rest assured that no human being will be able to oust us from there."

Russia's powerful counter-blow was struck on Nov. 19. Red Army wings on both sides of the city crossed the Volga and hammered out a junction on the Don River, twenty-five miles west of Stalingrad. Reinforcements flooded into the captured terrain to seal the fate of the 330,000 trapped Germans.

With all German relief efforts smashed, the Nazis were reduced to supplying their Stalingrad forces by transport plane. Hundreds of these were shot down, and as the circle contracted there no longer were any airfields available to the Germans.

The last Russian push at Stalingrad began on Jan. 10, when the Germans refused to surrender. German communiques became more and more reticent at first, then began to picture the men as martyrs who, while fighting "only with rifle butts and bayonets," were preventing the Russians from expanding successes elsewhere.

The erasure of the final Nazi at Stalingrad came three days after Berlin's gloomy celebration of the tenth anniversary of Herr Hitler's rise to power.

NETHERLANDS: An RAF Stirling bomber crashes near Hardinxveld-Giesendam (south-east of Rotterdam). It carries at one of its units the inscription "experimental 6". Only a few days after the RAF permitted H2S operations over occupied territory, a crashed aircraft was discovered by the Germans, carrying a nearly intact top secret British radar apparatus (it should have destroyed itself). More...


U-282, U-543 launched.

U-279 commissioned.

FINLAND: The fall of Stalingrad forces the Finnish leadership to consider the situation the war has reached. Marshal Mannerheim, President Risto Ryti and several cabinet ministers gather at the GHQ at Mikkeli to discuss the new situation. In his initial speech, the chief of GHQ's intelligence section Col. Aladar Paasonen  states that Germany will lose the war, and Finland is lucky if she gets peace with the same terms as in the Peace of Moscow in 1940. In the general discussion everybody agrees that Finland has to find a way to peace, but preferably without angering Germany, which is still strong enough to harm, perhaps even to occupy, Finland.

U.S.S.R.: Soviet troops retake Kushchevskaya, south of Rostov-on-Don, and Kupyansk in the Ukraine.

BURMA: British forces in Burma have used tanks in a three-day offensive in an attempt to breach the Japanese defences at Donbaik and Rathedaung, in the Arakan peninsula. But tonight the attacks ended without a break-through. It is now over a month since the 14th Indian Division reached Rathedaung and Donbaik but successive attacks have failed to take the towns. Strong defences have been built around bunkers, with the Japanese determination to resist the attacks until they are reinforced by General Koga's Japanese 55th Division later this month.


Frigate HMCS Prince Rupert launched Esquimalt, British Columbia.

Destroyer HMCS Athabaskan commissioned.

Minesweeper HMCS Westmount completed engine repairs and joined Halifax Local defence Force.


Destroyer USS Brownson commissioned.

Minesweeper USS Pilot commissioned.

Heavy cruisers USS Pittsburgh and St Paul laid down.

Light cruiser USS Springfield laid down.

Destroyer USS Halsey Powell laid down.

ATLANTIC OCEAN: U-265 (Type VIIC) is sunk south of Iceland, in position 56.35N, 22.49W, by depth charges from a British B-17 Fortress aircraft (Sqdn. 220/N). 46 dead (all hands lost). (Alex Gordon)

SS Rhexenor sunk by U-217 at 24.59N, 43.37W.

The American troopship USAT Dorchester is torpedoed and sunk off Greenland. Of 902 Soldiers, sailors and civilians on board, 672 die. (Jean Beach)


Book "The Immortal Chaplains"

Chapel of the Four Chaplains.

At 0452, U-223 fired five single torpedoes at three ships in Convoy SG-19 about 150 miles west of Cape Farewell. One of the first torpedoes hit passenger ship SS USAT Dorchester and the other torpedoes missed her and the Norwegian SS Biscaya and Lutz. The Dorchester (Master Hans Jorgen Danielson) was struck on the starboard side in the machinery spaces. The explosion stopped the engines and the vessel swung to starboard, losing way. Six blasts from the whistle indicated to the rest of the convoy that the Dorchester was hit. Her complement of seven officers, 123 crewmen, 23 armed guards (the ship was armed with one 4in, one 3in and four 20mm guns) and 751 troops and passengers began to abandon ship three minutes after the hit. Three of the 14 lifeboats had been damaged by the explosion, the crew managed only to launch two more overcrowded boats and 33 men left with rafts, but many men evidently did not realize the seriousness of the situation, stayed aboard and went down with the ship, which sank 30 minutes later. The USCG cutters Escanaba and Comanche began rescuing survivors within minutes. Rescue swimmers from the USS Escabana jumped into the icy water with lines tied about them to pull incapacitated men out of the water. The USS Escabana picked up 81 survivors from the water and rafts and 51 from one lifeboat. The USS Comanche picked up 41 survivors from another lifeboat and 56 from rafts and the water. They also picked up hundreds of bodies. They were landed at Narsarssuak the same day. 675 lives were lost - the master, three officers, 98 crewmen, 15 armed guards and 558 troops and passengers. The following were saved - three officers, 25 crewmen, 44 civilian workers, three Danish citizens, twelve armed guards, seven US coast guard personnel and 135 US Army personnel. Four Army chaplains representing the four different faiths - Rev Lt George Lansing Fox (Methodist); Rabbi Lt Alexander David Goode; Rev Lt. Clark Poling (First Reformed Church) and Father John Washington gave up their lifebelts to soldiers who have none, all four perished with the ship. All were posthumously awarded the Purple Heart and the DSC. In 1961 the US Congress declared the 3 February four Chaplains Observance Day and The Chapel of the Four Chaplains was established in Philadelphia.

At 1412 and 1413, U-255 fired torpedoes at Convoy RA-52 about 600 miles NE of Iceland and observed two hits on one ship after a running time of 1 minute 50 seconds and heard one further detonation after 3 minutes 20 seconds. Reche reported the Greylock sunk and claimed a hit on another freighter of 5000 tons, but this cannot be confirmed from Allied sources.

Lookouts on the Greylock (Master Charles Herbert Whitmore) spotted a torpedo in the smooth seas and broad daylight about 300 yards off the port side. They tried to evade the torpedo, but it struck between the #5 and #6 holds, creating a large hole below the waterline and also locking the steering gear. A second torpedo missed the bow by 75 yards. The ship immediately flooded and took a starboard list. 15 minutes after the hit, the ten officers, 26 crewmembers, 25 armed guards (the ship was armed with one 4in, one 3in, eight 20mm and two .30cal guns) and nine passengers (three of them survivors from the freighter Ballot) left the ship in four lifeboats. A British escort ship shelled the Greylock, which sank stern first at 1430. Most men were picked up by armed trawlers HMS Lady Madeleine and Northern Wave and landed at Belfast and Gourock. Four crewmembers were picked up by minesweeper HMS Harrier and taken to Scapa Flow. All the crew came together in Glasgow and were eventually repatriated from Liverpool.

At 0257, SS Inverilen in Convoy HX-224 was torpedoed by U-456 south of Iceland. The tanker was abandoned and sank later in 56°13N/20°35W. The master, 24 crewmembers and six gunners were lost. 14 crewmembers and two passengers (DBS) were picked up by HMS Asphodel and landed at Londonderry. U-456 was chased after the attack by HMS Londonderry, which had to abort the chase after she was damaged by a premature detonation of one of her own depth charges.

At 2154, tanker SS Cordelia, a straggler from convoy HX-224, was torpedoed and sunk by U-632 south of Iceland. The master, 37 crewmembers and eight gunners were lost. The sole survivor was taken prisoner by the U-boat and carelessly mentioned Convoy SC-118 that was reported to the BdU. The convoy was subsequently attacked with the loss of nine ships. The survivor landed at Brest on 14 February and was taken to the German POW camp Milag Nord.

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3 February 1944

Yesterday          Tomorrow

February 3rd, 1944 (THURSDAY)


U-681, U-870 commissioned

U-1051 launched.

ITALY: Anzio: Hitler has ordered that the Anzio beach-head "must be crushed in the blood of British soldiers". As dusk fell last night those soldiers were suffering a massive artillery barrage as the German Fourteenth Army prepared a full-scale counter-attack on the British salient.

Every German gun was trained on the "thumb" created by the British 1st Division on 30 January in an abortive attempt to reach Campoleone. "Anzio Annie", a 14-inch railway gun, was used to devastating effect. However, the Germans' latest secret weapon - "Goliath", a radio-controlled miniature tank packed with explosive - failed under small-arms fire.

By mid-morning the "thumb" was nearly severed. Over 1,400 men had been lost. The Germans suffered similar losses, but show no sign of letting up. Today the British VI Corps issued verbal orders to beach-head forces to prepare defensive positions.

U.S.S.R.: Moscow: Victory salvoes are crashing out in Moscow as the Russians celebrate victories all along the front. In a special order of the day Stalin has announced the trapping of ten German divisions in the Dniepr Bend in the biggest encirclement since Stalingrad. Meanwhile, in the north, General Govorov's troops have crossed the Estonian border in their great Leningrad offensive.

INDIAN OCEAN: At 2345, the unescorted Chinese Liberty Ship Chung Cheng was torpedoed by U-188. Due to her cargo of ore she sank so quickly that no lifeboat could be launched. On board were eleven American officers, four Chinese officers, 29 Chinese crewmen and 27 American armed guards. Twenty men, mostly Chinese crewmen were lost. The survivors were picked up after 12 hours by a British freighter and taken to a hospital in Aden.

JAPAN: United States warships shelled Paramushiru Island in the first attack on Japanese home territory.

MARSHALL ISLANDS: Glen Boren notes in his diary:

3 February 1944

The task Force pulled back during the night and we met a tanker for refueling which was completed at about 1400 hrs. As soon as we were up to launch speed, we put up the CAP and ASP. After this was done, we received 4 SB2Cs and 3 TBFs from a CVE. Later when it was time, we put up a relief CAP and proceded to land the ones that had been up. Everything went well until it was time to land Ens. George W. Reeves. He couldn't get his flaps down. After several waveoffs, he picked out a DD and flew past it and made a water landing forward of it. It might not have been quite the show it was if he had retracted his main gear, but perhaps he couldn't. That F6F did put on a show. The DD stopped and picked him up and everyone was happy. Scuddlebutt is that we are heading for Majuro.


Corvette HMCS Matapedia completed forecastle extension refit Liverpool, Nova Scotia.

Destroyer HMCS Huron departed Kola Inlet with Convoy RA-56 for Loch Ewe.

NEWFOUNDLAND: Tug HMCS Radville assigned to St John's.


Escort carrier USS Savo Island commissioned.

Minesweeper USS Triumph commissioned.

Destroyer escort USS Roy O Hale commissioned.

Frigate USS Hutchinson commissioned.

Submarine USS Entemedor laid down.

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3 February 1945

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February 3rd, 1945 (THURSDAY)

NORTH SEA: U-1279 Kl. VIIC/41 is sunk north-west of Bergen, in approximate position 61. 21N, 02. 00E, by depth charges from the British frigates HMS Bayntun, HMS Braithwaite and HMS Loch Eck. 48 dead (all hands lost). (Alex Gordon)

Minesweeping trawler HMS Arley sank while under tow in the North Sea after mine damage.

FRANCE: Colmar is captured by US and French First Army troops.

GERMANY: USAAF aircraft drop 3,000 tons of explosives on Berlin.

U-2361 commissioned.

COMMONWEALTH OF THE PHILIPPINES: Fighting gets fiercer north of Manila, and US reinforcements are landed on Tagaytay Ridge.

The 511th Parachute Inf Regt, 11th Abn Div (US) jumped on to Tagaytag Ridge near Manila. The first 915 paratroopers were flown in forty-eight Douglas C-47s of the 317th Troop Carrier Group. The first serial of eighteen aircraft dropped their troops with pinpoint accuracy on the selected drop zone. The second serial of thirty aircraft dropped its planeloads early five miles from the drop zone. At noon that same day, the mistake was repeated again as another serial of fifty-one planeloads of paratroopers jumped early onto the same spot five miles short of the drop zone. In spite of the confused parachute drop, the paratroopers managed to successfully link-up at 1500 hours that afternoon with the 187th and 188th Glider Regiments of the 11th Airborne Division attacking north toward Manila. (Ernesto Sassot)


Anti-Aircraft cruiser USS Tucson commissioned.

Destroyer USS Frank E Evans commissioned.

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