WWII Day-By-Day
Selected: February 29
       Overview of WWII on February 29 by year...
Leap year occurrences

1932 — , February 29

  • CBI - China: Day 33 of 41 of the 1st Battle of Shanghai.

1936 — , February 29

  • USA: FDR signs the Neutrality Act of 1936, acting on findings that bankers and businesses that were invested in the Allies in WWI had pushed the US to enter that war. Further Neutrality Acts and the Lend-Lease Act, however, will overrule these sentiments.
    Spotlight on Dr Seuss...

    Political cartoon regarding the Neutrality Act of 1936 by Theodor Geisel, aka Dr Seuss.

    Theodor Geisel was the chief editorial cartoonist for the New York tabloid newspaper PM. Throughout the war he drew over 400 political cartoons regularly denounced racism, isolationism and other issues of the day. Photo taken sometime in the 1950s.

    In response to complaints about his gross caricatures of the Japanese, such as shown here, Dr Seuss wrote: "right now, when the Japs are planting their hatchets in our skulls, it seems like a hell of a time for us to smile and warble 'brothers!' It is a rather flabby battlecry. If we want to win, we've got to kill Japs... We can get palsy-walsy afterward with those that are left."

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  • Japan: Day 4 of 4 of an ambitious coup attempt in Japan. Using the Sanno Hotel in Tokyo as their marshalling ground and headquarters, socialist junior Army officers have attempted to overthrow the Prime Minister and his cabinet. But Emperor Hirohito has ordered that their food and supplies be cut off, emphasizing his disapproval of their actions, and the coup attempt ends.

1940 — , February 29

  • Finland: Day 92 of 105 of the Russo-Finnish War.
  • CBI - China: Day 968 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
    • Day 107 of 381 of the Battle of South Guangxi.
    • Day 33 of 67 of the Battle of Wuyuan.

1944 — , February 29

  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 1 of 80 of the Battle of the Admiralty Islands. The US 1st Cavalry Division lands at Los Negros in the Admiralty Islands, capturing an airfield.

    The Admiralty Islands campaign (Operation BREWER) was a series of battles in the New Guinea campaign in which the US Army's 1st Cavalry Division occupied the Japanese-held Admiralty Islands. Acting on reports from airmen that there were no signs of enemy activity and the islands may have been evacuated, General Douglas MacArthur accelerated his timetable for capturing the Admiralties and ordered an immediate reconnaissance in force.

    The campaign began on 29 February 1944 when a force landed on Los Negros, the third-largest island in the group. By using a small, isolated beach where the Japanese had not anticipated an assault, the force achieved tactical surprise, but the islands proved to be far from unoccupied. A furious battle over the islands ensued.

    MacArthur paid a visit on the island at 16:00 that day and decorated the first man ashore with the Distinguished Service Cross. A lieutenant warned the MacArthur that a Japanese sniper had been killed in the vicinity just a few minutes before. "That's the best thing to do with them," the General replied.

    In the end, air superiority and command of the sea allowed the Allies to heavily reinforce their position on Los Negros. The 1st Cavalry Division could then overrun the islands. The campaign officially ended on 18 May 1944. The Allied victory completed the isolation of the major Japanese base at Rabaul that was the ultimate objective of the Allied campaigns of 1942 and 1943. A major air and naval base was developed in the Admiralty Islands that became an important launching point for the campaigns of 1944 in the Pacific.

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  • ETO - Germany: US 8th Air Force B-17s bomb at Brunswick.
  • ETO - France: US 9th Air Force B-26s bomb a coastal gun position and the nearby Breck-sur-Mer Airfield.
  • Russian Front - North: Day 47 of 48 of the Battle toward the Narva River, Estonia. This drive helped lift the Leningrad siege and goes on to liberate Narva.
  • Russian Front - North: Day 28 of 191 of the Battle of the Narva Isthmus, Estonia.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 68 of 113 of the USSR's Dnieper-Carpathian Offensive in southwestern Ukraine.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 31 of 31 of the Battle of Nikopol, Ukraine. The Soviets capture Krivoi Rog, securing this section of Ukraine.
  • MTO - Italy: Day 44 of 123 of the Battle of Monte Cassino. RAF and US Air Forces provides air support for the Allied ground troops.
  • MTO - Italy: Day 39 of 136 of the Battle of Anzio. The Germans launch their third major counter-offensive at Anzio. RAF and US Air Forces provides air support for the Allied ground troops.
  • CBI - Burma: Day 62 of 99 of the 2nd Battle of Arakan.
  • CBI - China: Day 2,429 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War. US 14th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - Marshall Islands: US 7th Air Force attack targets in the Marshalls.
  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 164 of 219 of the Battle of Shaggy Ridge. US 13th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 161 of 162 of the Battle of the Huon Peninsula. 5th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 77 of 597 of the Battle of New Britain. US 10th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - Solomon Islands: Day 121 of 295 of the Battle of the Bougainville Islands. US 13th Air Force provides air support.

Day-By-Day listings for February 29 were last modified on Friday, February 23, 2018
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