Categorized | Carousel, Historical

This Week in World War II: 75 Years Ago

In one of the saddest chapters of World War II, the Siege of Leningrad led to a terrible famine and lasted an incredible 900 days.

In one of the saddest chapters of World War II, the Siege of Leningrad led to a terrible famine and lasted an incredible 900 days.

By: Phil Kohn. Dedicated to the memory of his father, GM3 Walter Kohn, U.S. Navy Armed Guard, USNR, and all men and women who have answered the country’s call in time of need. Phil can be contacted at ww2remembered@yahoo.com.

In Norway on September 5, 1941, British RAF Flying Fortress bombers attack the German heavy cruiser Admiral Scheer in Oslo fjord. The vessel suffers little damage.

The requirement to wear a yellow Star of David with the word “Jew” inscribed on it is extended to all Jews over the age of 6 in German-occupied areas on September 6. In Japan, Prime Minister Konoe bows to military pressure and agrees to prepare for war by mid-October if no agreement is reached with the Americans over the oil embargo. Joseph Grew, U.S. ambassador to Japan, cautions Washington that if Konoe’s conciliatory proposals are not considered, the Japanese prime minister could well be replaced by a military dictatorship. In China, the Japanese launch a second offensive to take Changsha, the capital of Hunan province. After a month-long battle, the 300,000 Chinese defenders repel the attacks of 120,000 Japanese troops, inflicting casualties of over 7,000. Chinese casualty numbers are unknown.

In northern Norway the British carrier HMS Victorious on September 7 launches air attacks against German installations in and around Tromsø, but little damage is done.

On September 8, with Leningrad virtually surrounded, a siege is begun. German forces are south of the city while Finnish forces are to the north. The plan is to starve and bombard the population of almost 3.4 million residents — Leningrad is the Soviet Union’s second-largest city — into submission. As a start, the Luftwaffe drops 6,000 incendiary bombs on the city. Finnish attacks against the Soviets in the area between Lake Ladoga and Lake Onega cut the Murmansk-Leningrad railway track south of Murmansk, the northern port vital for Allied Arctic convoys getting supplies to the U.S.S.R. In Moscow, Stalin orders 600,000 so-called “Volga Germans” (descendants of ethnic Germans who had settled along the Volga River in southeastern European Russia in the 1700s) deported to Siberia.

The Spanish “Blue Division” of fascist volunteers arrives on the Leningrad Front on September 9 to serve with the German Army. Iran agrees to the terms laid down by Great Britain and the Soviet Union: It will close all diplomatic missions of Germany, Italy and their allies, and will turn over all German and Italian nationals to the British or the Soviets. British and Soviet occupation zones are set up, and the Allies will control roads, airports and all communications within Iran.

On September 10 on the Eastern Front, Gen. Heinz Guderian’s Panzer Group 2 attacks southward against Soviet forces east of Kiev, Ukraine, reaching Konotop. At the same time, Gen. Paul von Kleist’s Panzer Group 1 begins a breakout from its bridgehead over the Dniepr River near Kremenchuk, an important industrial city in central Ukraine. In Bratislava, the Slovakian government announces laws stripping all rights from the country’s 135,000 Jews and approves their internment and deportation. In Leningrad, a German air raid kills 200 civilians.

Charles Lindbergh, on September 11 at an America First Committee rally in Des Moines, Iowa, declares that “the three most important groups which have been pressing this country towards war are the British, the Jewish, and the Roosevelt administration.” Widespread public condemnation of Lindbergh follows and the anti-war America First Committee begins to lose favor with many Americans.

Comments are closed.

Browse Current Issue - Click Here

Perth Amboy Calendar

MON. Jan 22
• City Council, Caucus,
4:30 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

WED. Jan 24
• City Council, Regular,
7 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

THURS. Jan 25
• Historic Preservation Commission
7 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

MON. Jan 29
• Special Public Meeting, RE: Discussion of Rezoning Ordinance
6 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

 

Stay informed! Attend public meetings. All are welcome!

South Amboy Calendar

WED. Jan. 31
• City Council, Regular,
7 p.m.
City Hall, N. Broadway

WED. Feb. 7
• City Council, Business,
6 p.m.
City Hall, N. Broadway

Stay informed! Attend public meetings. All are welcome!