WWII Day-By-Day
Selected: April 6
       Overview of WWII on April 6 by year...

1924 — , April 6

  • Italy: Italian Fascists win the elections in Italy with a 2/3 majority.

1932 — , April 6

  • CBI: Floyd Gibbon reports for Hearst Metrotone News from the ruins of Chapei, Northern Shanghai, China, leveled in the first of Japan's terror bombings of civilians that will become standard policy during World War II.

    Japanese Mitsubishi K21 bomber drops bombs
    over the Chinese city of Chongqing

    Date taken unknown

    In the coming years, America will remain very isolationist regarding such events around the world, but the newsreels evoked an emotional response that newspapers and radio simply could not. Pro-Chinese sympathy and anti-Japanese feelings began to grow within the notoriously isolationist US.

    In the days before television network news, CNN, FOX news and the Internet, many people got much of their world news from the newsreel at the movies. A newsreel was a compilation of world news stories, both serious and funny, that various movie studios put together and released with their films in theaters.

    Pathe released the very first newsreel in 1911, and the popularity of the newsreel quickly caught on. Although silent, the newsreel gave the ordinary person a glimpse at life beyond his city limits. Most people had a radio and listened to national and world news there, but the newsreel allowed them to see the news. The newsreel could be said to be the forerunner of both the network television news and entertainment news shows.

    The first "talkie" newsreel was exhibited in 1926, and after that, five companies produced the films: Fox Movietone, Paramount, Universal, Warner-Pathe and Hearst Metrotone.

    Since the movie studios were responsible for the newsreels' content, they occasionally slanted the news, and sometimes even staged events for their cameras. Several companies were guilty of this in World War I. However, many of the cameramen and reporters were honest journalists and came away with incredible footage of historic events. Most people felt that Paramount had the most balanced newsreels, while Hearst-Metrotone, released by MGM, were considered the most slanted.

    When the last Universal newsreel was released in 1967, it was truly the end of an era in the cinema experience.

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1933 — , April 6

  • CBI - China: Day 96 of 142 of the 1st Battle of Hebei.

1937 — , April 6

  • Spain: Day 264 of 985 of the Spanish Civil War.

1938 — , April 6

  • USA: The P-39 Airacobra makes its first test flight. Rapid development will soon outclass the revolutionary design of this fighter and tank killer. Some 5,000 P-39s will end up being put to good use by Russian forces.

    The P-39 Airacobra

    With its engine located behind the pilot, the P-39 Airacobra was a revolutionary design and one of the first single-seat fighters equipped with a tricycle landing gear. A long shaft between the pilot's legs drove the propeller and a 37mm cannon fired through the propeller hub. As newer designs superseded it, about 5000 P-39s ended up being delivered to Russia. Soviet pilots made very good use of it.

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  • USA: The United States recognizes the German occupation of Austria and the new Austrian government.
  • Spain: Day 629 of 985 of the Spanish Civil War.
  • CBI - China: Day 274 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
    • Day 59 of 124 of the Battle of Henan.
    • Day 14 of 15 of the Battle of Taierzhuang. Japanese troops begin to withdraw, abandoning their ammunition and heavy equipment.
    • Day 14 of 39 of the Battle of Xuzhou.

1939 — , April 6

  • UK: The recent British-French-Polish verbal agreement to mutually guarantee each others' borders is signed as a formal treaty in London, England.
  • CBI - China: Day 639 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
    • Day 21 of 54 of the Battle of Nanchang.

1940 — , April 6

  • Atlantic: German sub U-59 sinks the Norwegian steamer NAVARRA 20 miles off the Scottish coast.
  • Atlantic: German sub U-1 disappears in the North Sea and her crew of 24 are never seen again. Experts say it's most likely she was lost to a British naval mine.
  • ETO - Germany: The RAF monitors the German movements at Kiel in preparation for the invasion of Norway. That night, the ships slip out under the cover of darkness.
  • CBI - China: Day 1,005 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
    • Day 144 of 381 of the Battle of South Guangxi.

1941 — , April 6

  • Atlantic: German sub U-94 sinks the Norwegian tanker LINCOLN ELLSWORTH 100 miles southwest of Ireland.
  • Atlantic: British armed merchant cruiser HMS COROMIN, carrying military personnel heading for British West Africa, catches fire 450 miles west of Ireland. 20 are killed, 405 survive.
  • Atlantic: RAF Beaufort torpedo-bomber torpedoes the German battlecruiser GNEISENAU at Brest, France.
  • ETO - UK: Day 213 of 258 of the Blitz.
  • Germany: A transport of 1,021 prisoners from Pawiak Prison in Warsaw, Poland, arrives at Auschwitz Concentration Camp. Among these are famous actors who had been arrested for murdering fellow actor Igo Sym, who had collaborated with the Germans.
  • MTO - Yugoslavia: Day 1 of 12 of the Axis invasion of Yugoslavia. The battle begins with the Luftwaffe destroying the Yugoslavian Air Force on the ground along with a heavy bombing of Belgrade.
  • MTO - Greece: Day 1 of 25 of the Battle of Greece. The Axis powers launch their attack from Bulgaria. The invasion gets off to a slow start due to stiff Greek and British resistance.
  • MTO - Libya: British and Australian troops hurriedly evacuate Barce and Derna falling back toward Tobruk. Elsewhere, the Axis troops capture Msus and lay siege at Mechili.
  • East Africa: Day 301 of 537 of Italy's East African campaign in the lands south of Egypt. The 11th African Division captures Addis Ababa, the capital of Abyssinia, while Ethiopian troops take the Italian forts at Debra Markos, relying on camels to carry all their supplies.
  • CBI - China: Day 1,370 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
    • Day 24 of 27 of the Battle of Shanggao.
  • CBI - Thailand: Day 188 of 221 of the Franco-Thai War (Vichy France vs Thailand).

1942 — , April 6

  • Atlantic: Day 83 of 169 of Germany's Second "Happy Time," during which U-boats sink 609 Allied ships with little risk.
    • U-160 damages the US tanker BIDWELL east of Wilmington, North Carolina, killing 1 of 33 aboard.
  • Russian Front - North: Day 211 of 872 of the Siege of Leningrad.
  • Russian Front - North: Day 58 of 102 of the Battle of the Demyansk Pocket, another failed attempt to break the siege at Leningrad.
  • Russian Front - North: Day 74 of 103 of the Battle of the Kholm Pocket. Another attempt to break the siege at Leningrad.
  • Russian Front - Center: Day 89 of 103 of the Battle of Vyazma, Russia.
  • Russian Front - Center: Day 89 of 103 of the Battle of Sychevsk, Russia.
  • Russian Front - Center: Day 35 of 49 of the Battle of Rzhev, Russia, a diversion to pull more German troops away from Moscow.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 159 of 248 of the Siege of Sevastopol, Crimean Peninsula.
  • MTO - Egypt: Axis bombers attack the port of Alexandria.
  • CBI: Day 7 of 11 of the Japanese Naval raids on Allied ships throughout the Indian Ocean. Japanese warships sink 23 Allied merchantmen vessels off the eastern coast of India, while their airplanes bomb ports on the eastern coast of India and Ceylon.
  • CBI: US 10th Air Force: Pan American Airways DC-3s begin hauling 30,000 gallons of fuel and 500 gallons of lubricants from Calcutta to the airstrip at Asansol, India, completing this mission on the following day. This fuel, which will subsequently be transferred to China, is for Doolittle's Tokyo raiders, who are already aboard the aircraft carrier USS HORNET.
  • CBI - Burma: Day 114 of 164 of Japan's Invasion of Burma. Japanese troops capture Mandalay.
  • CBI - China: Day 1,735 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
  • PTO - Malaya: Day 47 of 357 of the Battle of Timor Island.
  • PTO - Philippines: Day 120 of 152 of the 1st Battle of the Philippines. 5th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - Solomon Islands: Japanese troops land on Bougainville.

1943 — , April 6

  • Russian Front - North: Day 576 of 872 of the Siege of Leningrad.
  • Russian Front - North: Day 337 of 658 of the Siege of the Kholm Pocket.
  • MTO - Italy: RAF and US Air Forces attack targets in Sicily and on mainland Italy.
  • MTO - Tunisia: Day 141 of 178 of the Battle of Tunisia. RAF and US Air Forces provide Allied air support. Day 15 of 16 of the Battle of El Guettar. The Axis troops begin retreating from the region.
  • CBI - Burma: Day 58 of 79 of the Allied Operation LONGCLOTH. US 10th Air Force provides air support.
  • CBI - China: Day 2,100 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
  • PTO - Alaska: Day 304 of 435 of the Battle of Kiska, Aleutian Islands.
  • PTO - New Guinea: US 5th Air Force hits a variety of targeted areas.
  • PTO - Solomon Islands: Day 6 of 16 of Japan's Operation I-GO.

1944 — , April 6

  • UK: The financial strain of the war leads the United Kingdom to introduce the PAYE (pay as you earn) tax withholding system.
  • ETO - France: US 8th Air Force B-24s bomb V-weapon sites at Watten.
  • ETO - France: The Nazis raid a French home rounding up Jewish children.
  • ETO - Sweden: The first flight of Operation SONNIE is carried out, covertly transporting internees from Sweden to England.
  • Russian Front - North: Day 65 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 105 of 113 of the USSR's Dnieper-Carpathian Offensive in southwestern Ukraine.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 34 of 45 of the Battle of Chernovtsy, Ukraine.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 13 of 15 of the Battle of Kamenets-Podolsky Pocket, Ukraine.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 32 of 44 of the Battle of Snigirevka, Ukraine.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 12 of 20 of the Battle of Odessa, Ukraine.
  • MTO - Yugoslavia: US 15th Air Force B-24s bomb the airfield at Zagrebt.
  • MTO - Italy: Day 81 of 123 of the Battle of Monte Cassino. RAF and US Air Forces provide air support.
  • MTO - Italy: Day 76 of 136 of the Battle of Anzio. RAF and US Air Forces provide air support.
  • CBI - Burma: Day 99 of 99 of the 2nd Battle of Arakan. The Indian 26th Division captures the critical Point 551 hill that dominates the surrounding regions, but the overall offensive has waned at this point and the Anglo-Indians pause to regroup. The Allies will not gain another opportunity to gain the remainder of the Arakan region for months to come.
  • CBI - Burma: Day 33 of 166 of the UK's Operation THURSDAY. Japanese troops attack the WHITE CITY site. Meanwhile, the Indian 26th Division captures Point 551 hill.
  • CBI - Burma: Day 28 of 147 of the Battle of Myitkyina. US 10th Air Force provides air support. Day 10 of 10 of an action at Nhpum Ga Ridge by the infamous "Merrill's Marauders" against 1,300 Japanese.
  • CBI - Burma: Day 6 of 302 of the Chinese Salween Offensive. US 14th Air Force provides air support.
  • CBI - China: Day 2,466 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
    • US 14th Air Force P-40s attack the enemy near Nanchang.
  • CBI - India: Day 30 of 118 of the Battle of Imphal-Kohima. Japanese troops launch a night attack reaching the edge of Kohima but are stopped by early morning. Abdul Hafiz of the Indian 9th Jat Infantry Regiment is mortally wounded while leading an attack against a Japanese-held hill near Imphal, India. For his heroic actions, he is posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross.
  • PTO: US 7th Air Force B-24s bomb at Wake Island.
  • PTO - Caroline Islands: US 13th Air Force bombs Truk.
  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 38 of 80 of the Battle of the Admiralty Islands. 5th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 201 of 219 of the Battle of Shaggy Ridge. 5th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 114 of 597 of the Battle of New Britain. US 13th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - Solomon Islands: Day 158 of 295 of the Battle of the Bougainville Islands. US 13th Air Force provides air support.

1945 — , April 6

  • ETO - Netherlands: On the Island of Texel off the Dutch coast, Georgian troops serving as volunteers with the German army stage a mutiny, killing 246 German soldiers in their sleep. The mutiny turns into a battle which eventually kills 800 Germans, 500 Georgians and 117 Texel civilians. The fighting ends only when the Canadians arrive on 20 May 1945, two weeks after the end of the European war. This Georgian Uprising on Texel will become Europe's last battlefield of WWII.

    Georgian soldiers in the Wehrmacht

    Georgian POWs were given the choice to either fight for the Wehrmacht or die of starvation in the POW camps. Many Georgian soldiers chose to work for the Germans, having no love for the brutality of Stalin and joined the German garrison on Texel.

    As the end of the war approached, it became clear that the Germans had lost and that Stalin would be unforgiving for Red Army soldiers who surrendered, let alone cooperated with the Germans. The Georgians decided to mutiny against the Germans and a viscous battle with many casualties erupted, the final battlefield in Europe.

    Texel Uprising related dates...

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  • ETO - France: Day 251 of 284 of the Battle of Brittany.
  • ETO - France: Day 204 of 236 of the Siege of Dunkirk.
  • ETO - Germany: Day 32 of 46 of the Battle of the Ruhr Pocket. US 9th Air Force provides air support.
  • ETO - Germany: Day 3 of 9 of the Battle of Heilbronn. US 1st Army continues to engage the German defenders.
  • ETO - Germany: US 8th Air Force B-17s and B-24s bomb a number of targets throughout Germany.
  • Germany: Joseph Goebbels announces that a German victory is to come during this month and only Adolf Hitler knows the moment. He obtained this information from astrology.
  • Germany: Prisoners of Moringen Concentration Camp who can still walk are sent on a death march toward the east while those remaining will be liberated by the Western Allies three days later.
  • Russian Front - Finland: Day 204 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 174 of 206 of the Battle of the Courland Pocket in Latvia.
  • Russian Front - Center: Day 72 of 75 of the Battle of Königsberg, East Prussia (now Kaliningrad, Russia). Day 6 of a 6-day Soviet artillery bombardment against Königsberg. Soviet troops rush into the city.
  • Russian Front - Center: Day 53 of 83 of the German Siege of Breslau (today Wroclaw, Poland). The Soviets continue with their siege.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 12 of 21 of the Battle of Nagykanizsa-Körmend, western Hungary.
  • Russian Front - South: Day 25 of 34 of the Battle of Vienna, Austria. The Soviet 3rd Ukrainian Front begins attacking the suburbs of Vienna.
  • MTO - Yugoslavia: Yugoslavian partisan forces take control of Sarajevo.
  • MTO - Italy: Day 1 of 27 of Operation GRAPESHOT. The Allies launch a successful offensive in northern Italy.
  • MTO - Italy: RAF and US Air Forces provide air support for the Allied ground units.
  • CBI - Burma: Day 62 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 2,831 of 2,987 of the 2nd Sino-Japanese War.
    • Day 6 of 91 of the Battle of Zhijiang. US 14th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO: General Douglas MacArthur is named the Supreme Allied Commander in the Pacific.
  • PTO: The USS TIRANTE stops a Japanese fishing boat, captures the crew of three and sinks the boat with gunfire.
  • PTO - Alaska: US 11th Air Force B-24s bomb the Kurabu airfield on Paramushiru Island while B-25s attack Hayakegawa on Kotani Island and Minami Cape.
  • PTO - Formosa: US 5th Air Force bombs the town of Hokko.
  • PTO - Japan: Day 6 of 83 of the Battle of Okinawa. The US fleet off Okinawa is hit by the first kamikaze suicide raid, code-named FLOATING CHRYSANTHEMUM I. During this attack, 3 US destroyers are sunk while 116 Japanese aircraft are destroyed.
  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 466 of 597 of the Battle of New Britain. US 10th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - New Guinea: Day 350 of 481 of the Battle of Western New Guinea. US 10th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - Philippines: Day 169 of 299 of the 2nd Battle of the Philippines, aka the Liberation of the Philippines or the Philippines Campaign.
  • PTO - Philippines: Day 113 of 244 of the Battle of Luzon. 5th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - Philippines: Day 28 of 159 of the Battle of Mindanao Island. 5th Air Force provides air support.
  • PTO - Philippines: Day 20 of 135 of the Battle of the Visayas region. US 5th and 7th Air Forces provide air support.

Day-By-Day listings for April 6 were last modified on Friday, February 23, 2018
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