USA: FDR signs Executive Order 6102 "forbidding the hoarding of gold coin, gold bullion and gold certificates within the continental United States." The order criminalizes the possession of monetary gold by any individual, partnership, association or corporation.
FDR signs Executive Order 6102
The order was rationalized on the grounds that hard times had caused "hoarding" of gold, stalling economic growth and making the depression worse. Violation carried a penalty of a $10,000 fine or ten years imprisonment or both.
There was only one prosecution under the order and in that case the order was ruled invalid by a federal judge.
(photo is actually of Roosevelt signing declaration of war, 8 Dec 41)
Germany: A council of German Christians in Berlin issues a call for a unified Protestant church faithful to the tenets of National Socialism, including the "Aryan cleansing" of the German church.
CBI - China: Day 95 of 142 of the 1st Battle of Hebei.
1937 — , April 5
Spain: Day 263 of 985 of the Spanish Civil War.
1938 — , April 5
Spain: Day 628 of 985 of the Spanish Civil War.
CBI - China: Day 273 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
Day 58 of 124 of the Battle of Henan.
Day 13 of 15 of the Battle of Taierzhuang. Additional Chinese troops arrive and immediately mount another counter-offensive.
Day 13 of 39 of the Battle of Xuzhou.
1939 — , April 5
CBI - China: Day 638 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
Day 20 of 54 of the Battle of Nanchang.
1940 — , April 5
ETO - UK: The UK informs Norway and Sweden of their intention to mine Norwegian waters.
ETO - UK: British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain announces that a German invasion of Western Europe would not be successful, claiming Hitler had "missed the bus."
ETO - Norway: The Norwegian ambassador in Berlin warns Denmark and Norway (and British intelligence) of a possible invasion.
ETO - Germany: The RAF bombs German shipping at Wilhelmshaven.
CBI - China: Day 1,004 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
Day 143 of 381 of the Battle of South Guangxi.
1941 — , April 5
USA: Congress passes the "Fifth Supplemental National Defense Appropriation Act, 1941" which allocates $14,575,000 for establishing a Marine Corps training ground on the east coast.
Atlantic: Before dawn, the HMS WOLVERINE, HMS ARBUTUS and HMS SCARBOROUGH force German sub U-76 to surface 250 miles south of Iceland. The crew scuttles their submarine to prevent its capture.
Atlantic: German sub U-105 sinks the British ship ENA DE LARRINAGA 800 miles northwest of Natal, Brazil.
ETO - UK: Day 212 of 258 of the Blitz.
Eastern Front: Yugoslavia and the USSR sign a non-aggression treaty.
MTO - Libya: Axis troops advance toward Msus and Mechili.
East Africa: Day 300 of 537 of Italy's East African campaign in the lands south of Egypt. In Massawa, Eritrea, Italian Admiral Bonetti, who had previously refused to surrender, now asks for surrender terms. But before getting a response, Mussolini orders him to fight until the last man.
CBI - China: Day 1,369 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
Day 23 of 27 of the Battle of Shanggao.
CBI - Thailand: Day 187 of 221 of the Franco-Thai War (Vichy France vs Thailand).
1942 — , April 5
Atlantic: Day 82 of 169 of Germany's Second "Happy Time," during which U-boats sink 609 Allied ships with little risk.
Russian Front - North: Day 210 of 872 of the Siege of Leningrad. Hitler orders a renewed offensive.
Russian Front - North: Day 57 of 102 of the Battle of the Demyansk Pocket, another failed attempt to break the siege at Leningrad.
Russian Front - North: Day 73 of 103 of the Battle of the Kholm Pocket. Another attempt to break the siege at Leningrad.
Russian Front - Center: Day 88 of 103 of the Battle of Vyazma, Russia.
Russian Front - Center: Day 88 of 103 of the Battle of Sychevsk, Russia.
Russian Front - Center: Day 34 of 49 of the Battle of Rzhev, Russia, a diversion to pull more German troops away from Moscow.
Russian Front - South: Day 158 of 248 of the Siege of Sevastopol, Crimean Peninsula.
CBI: Day 6 of 11 of the Japanese Naval raids on Allied ships throughout the Indian Ocean. A Japanese carrier fleet attacks the British naval base at Colombo, Ceylon, sinking the heavy cruisers HMS CORNWALL and HMS DORSETSHIRE.
CBI - Burma: Day 113 of 164 of Japan's Invasion of Burma. Japanese and Chinese troops clash at Yedashe in central Burma.
CBI - China: Day 1,734 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
PTO - Malaya: Day 46 of 357 of the Battle of Timor Island.
PTO - Philippines: Day 119 of 152 of the 1st Battle of the Philippines. 5th Air Force provides air support. Japanese troops defeat the US 21st Division at Mount Samat. The submarine USS SNAPPER delivers 20 tons of food to Corregidor and evacuates 27 personnel.
1943 — , April 5
Germany: Lutheran Pastor, theologian and anti-fascist Dietrich Bonhoeffer is arrested and imprisoned, charged with subverting the German armed forces. He was a participant in the German resistance movement against Nazism and was involved in plans by members of the Abwehr (the German Military Intelligence Office) to assassinate Adolf Hitler.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, circa 1930s
On 01 Feb 33, two days after Adolf Hitler became chancellor of Germany, Bonhoeffer, lecturer at Berlin University, took to the radio and denounced the Nazi Fuhrerprinzip, the leadership principle that was merely a synonym for dictatorship, but his broadcast was cut off before he could finish.
Bonhoeffer went on to give support to the Confessing Church movement in Germany, a declaration by Lutheran and evangelical Pastors and theologians that they would not have their churches co-opted by the Nazi government for propagandistic purposes.
He was executed by hanging on April 9, 1945, 23 days before the Nazis' surrender.
ETO - Belgium: US 8th Air Force B-17s bomb the Erla aircraft factory and Erla engine works near Antwerp.
Russian Front - North: Day 575 of 872 of the Siege of Leningrad.
Russian Front - North: Day 336 of 658 of the Siege of the Kholm Pocket.
MTO - Italy: RAF and US Air Forces attack targets in Sicily.
MTO - Tunisia: Day 140 of 178 of the Battle of Tunisia. The Allies launch Operation FLAX, a concentrated effort to destroy the Axis capability to supply Tunisia by air. RAF and US Air Forces provide Allied air support. Day 14 of 16 of the Battle of El Guettar.
CBI - Burma: Day 57 of 79 of the Allied Operation LONGCLOTH. US 10th and 14th Air Forces provide air support.
CBI - China: Day 2,099 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
PTO: The USS FINBACK torpedoes a damaged Japanese merchant ship beached off Wake Island.
PTO - Alaska: Day 303 of 435 of the Battle of Kiska, Aleutian Islands. US 11th Air Force B-24s and B-25s bomb the Attu runway and Kiska's Main Camp and runway.
PTO - New Guinea: US 5th Air Force hits a variety of targeted areas.
PTO - Solomon Islands: Day 5 of 16 of Japan's Operation I-GO.
1944 — , April 5
USA: At Los Alamos, New Mexico, Emilio Segrè receives the first sample of reactor-refined plutonium from Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He will soon discover that the spontaneous fission rate of this plutonium is too high to use in a gun-type fission weapon.
ETO - France: US 8th Air Force B-24s bomb V-weapon sites at St Pol/Siracourt.
ETO - Germany: Siegfried Lederer escapes from Auschwitz-Birkenau and makes it safely to Czechoslovakia. He then warns the Elders of the Council at Theresienstadt about Auschwitz.
Germany: An official German report says that as of this date, they have 20 concentration camps with 165 connected labor camps.
Russian Front - North: Day 64 of 191 of the Battle of the Narva Isthmus, Estonia. Both German and Soviet troops in the Baltic region remain in a defensive position.
Russian Front - Center: German Army Group Centre launches a counter-attack to relieve the surrounded German units trapped in the Pripet swamps near Kovel.
Russian Front - South: Day 104 of 113 of the USSR's Dnieper-Carpathian Offensive in southwestern Ukraine.
Russian Front - South: Day 33 of 45 of the Battle of Chernovtsy, Ukraine.
Russian Front - South: Day 12 of 15 of the Battle of Kamenets-Podolsky Pocket, Ukraine.
Russian Front - South: Day 31 of 44 of the Battle of Snigirevka, Ukraine. Soviet troops enter Ternopil.
Russian Front - South: Day 11 of 20 of the Battle of Odessa, Ukraine.
Hungary: Hungarian Jews are now required to wear the yellow Star of David.
MTO - Romania: USAAF and RAF coordinate their efforts and begin round-the-clock raids on the oil refineries at Ploesti.
MTO - Italy: Day 80 of 123 of the Battle of Monte Cassino. RAF and US Air Forces provide air support.
MTO - Italy: Day 75 of 136 of the Battle of Anzio. RAF and US Air Forces provide air support.
CBI - Burma: Day 98 of 99 of the 2nd Battle of Arakan.
CBI - Burma: Day 32 of 166 of the UK's Operation THURSDAY.
CBI - Burma: Day 27 of 147 of the Battle of Myitkyina. US 10th Air Force provides air support. Day 9 of 10 of an action at Nhpum Ga Ridge by the infamous "Merrill's Marauders" against 1,300 Japanese.
CBI - Burma: Day 5 of 302 of the Chinese Salween Offensive. US 14th Air Force provides air support.
CBI - China: Day 2,465 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
Japanese Zeros attack the Allied airfield at Nanning, Guangxi.
CBI - India: Day 29 of 118 of the Battle of Imphal-Kohima. The Indian 161st Brigade repositions themselves a couple of miles northwest of Kojima at Jotsoma.
PTO - Marshall Islands: US 7th Air Force B-25s bomb Maloelap and Majuro.
PTO - New Guinea: Day 37 of 80 of the Battle of the Admiralty Islands. 5th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - New Guinea: Day 200 of 219 of the Battle of Shaggy Ridge. 5th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - New Guinea: Day 113 of 597 of the Battle of New Britain. US 13th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - Solomon Islands: Day 157 of 295 of the Battle of the Bougainville Islands. US 13th Air Force provides air support.
1945 — , April 5
ETO - Netherlands: Allied troops liberate Almelo.
ETO - France: Day 250 of 284 of the Battle of Brittany.
ETO - France: Day 203 of 236 of the Siege of Dunkirk.
ETO - Germany: Day 31 of 46 of the Battle of the Ruhr Pocket. US 9th Air Force provides air support. Eighteen US Divisions begin clearing the Ruhr Pocket.
ETO - Germany: Day 2 of 9 of the Battle of Heilbronn. US 1st Army continues to engage German troops.
ETO - Germany: The French 1st Army captures Karlsruhe on the upper Rhine.
ETO - Germany: US 89th Infantry Division liberates the Ohrdruf Concentration Camp in Germany, which was a satellite of Buchenwald Concentration Camp. General Eisenhower will visit this camp later.
ETO - Germany: US 8th Air Force B-17s and B-24s bomb a number of targets throughout Germany. Among their targets is Kiel, where they damage the German cruisers HIPPER and EMDEN.
Soviet Union: The Soviet foreign minister informs the Japanese ambassador that the USSR will not renew the Soviet-Japanese Neutrality Pact when it expires in 1946.
Russian Front - Finland: Day 203 of 223 of the Lapland War. Finland and Russia have joined forces to kick the Germans out of Finland's most northern province.
Russian Front - Center: Day 173 of 206 of the Battle of the Courland Pocket in Latvia.
Russian Front - Center: Day 71 of 75 of the Battle of Königsberg, East Prussia (now Kaliningrad, Russia). Day 5 of a 6-day Soviet artillery bombardment against Königsberg. A break in the weather allows Soviet planes to bomb the city.
Russian Front - Center: Day 52 of 83 of the German Siege of Breslau (today Wroclaw, Poland). The Soviets continue with their siege.
Russian Front - South: Day 11 of 21 of the Battle of Nagykanizsa-Körmend, western Hungary.
Russian Front - South: Day 24 of 34 of the Battle of Vienna, Austria. The Soviets reach the railway northwest of Vienna, cutting its rail link with Linz.
MTO: US 12th and 15th Air Forces attack targets in Austria, Yugoslavia and Italy.
MTO - Italy: RAF and US Air Forces provide air support for the Allied ground units.
CBI - Burma: Day 61 of 99 of the Battle of Pakokku and Irrawaddy River operations in central Burma. The US 10th Air Force provides air support.
CBI - China: Day 2,830 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
Day 5 of 91 of the Battle of Zhijiang. US 14th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - Caroline Islands: US 7th Air Force B-24s hit targets on Eten and Dublon Islands in Truk Atoll.
PTO - Formosa: US 5th Air Force B-24s bomb Kiirun harbor.
PTO - Japan: Day 5 of 83 of the Battle of Okinawa. A US military government is established on Okinawa.
PTO - New Guinea: Day 465 of 597 of the Battle of New Britain. US 10th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - New Guinea: Day 349 of 481 of the Battle of Western New Guinea. US 10th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - Philippines: Day 168 of 299 of the 2nd Battle of the Philippines, aka the Liberation of the Philippines or the Philippines Campaign.
PTO - Philippines: Day 112 of 244 of the Battle of Luzon. 5th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - Philippines: Day 27 of 159 of the Battle of Mindanao Island. 5th Air Force provides air support.
PTO - Philippines: Day 19 of 135 of the Battle of the Visayas region. US 5th and 7th Air Forces provide air support.
1947 — , April 5
China: Chinese communist forces attack a US Marines ammunition depot.
1948 — , April 5
Poland: A war crimes trial against Albert Forster begins at Gdansk, Poland, by the Polish Supreme National Tribunal. He was a Nazi German politician under whose administration as the Gauleiter of Danzig-West Prussia, the local non-German population suffered ethnic cleansing, mass murder and forced Germanization.
Day-By-Day listings for April 5 were last modified on Thursday, January 28, 2016