Disaster Strikes - a B-17 inadvertently flies under another plane dropping bombs. The bombs tear off the tail

Project 60: A Day-by-Day Diary of WWII 

Remembering the First Fight Against Fascism

British soldiers from the US 5th Army cross a pontoon bridge over the Volturno River 

October 5, 1943

Heavy fighting between the British 78th Division and the 16th Panzer Division continues at Termoli, bringing the advance of the British 13th Corps (8th Army) to a halt.

Wake Island is hit by aircraft and naval guns from Task Force 14. The group consists of 6 aircraft carriers, 7 cruisers and 25 destroyers.

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October 6, 1943

Elements of the US 25th Division land on Kolomabangara in the Solomon Islands meeting no opposition. That night the 600 man Japanese garrison is evacuated from Vella Lavella by a force of six destroyers. They encounter three US destroyers. Both sides lost one ship sunk and the Americans withdrew when their other two ships were damaged.

In Italy, the US 5th Army advances beyond the Volturno Rivers, capturing Capua. Meanwhile, heavy fighting continues

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October 7, 1943

Red Army forces launch a fresh offensive in the north capturing Nevel. In the south, the Soviets pause to bring up supplies and consolidate their recently gained bridgeheads over the Dniepr River.

Royal Navy forces intercept a convoy of German transports heading for Cos. The entire force of seven transports are sunk.

Fighting between the 16th Panzer Division and the British 78th Division at Termoli ends as the Germans pull back behind the Trigno River.

In their initial use, Bomber Command deploys its “Cigar” jammers to confuse German night-fighter communications. The technique succeeds in largely eliminating the opposition over Stuttgart, which is hit with 343 heavy Lancaster bombers. Nearly 5000 homes were destroyed, and 160 civilians killed in the raid at a cost of 4 bombers.

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October 8, 1943

The entire US 5th Army has reached the Volturno River and begin preparations for crossing the river.

Communist and anti-communist factions in Greece launch attacks against each other, beginning six years of civil war.

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October 9, 1943

The German 17th Army completes the evacuation of the Kuban Peninsula moving across the Strait of Kerch into the dubious safety of the Crimean Peninsula. 225,000 German and Rumanian soldiers and 27,000 civilians made the withdrawal.

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October 10, 1943

US 5th Army forces capture Portelandalfo, Italy.

Soviet forces approach Gomel capturing Dobrush.

A German submarine successfully mines the Atlantic entrance to the Panama Canal.

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October 11, 1943  

The Red Army forces capture Novobelitsa near Gomel.

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October 12, 1943  

The US 5th Army begins its assaults on the Volturno River line. The British 10th Corps operating along the coast makes little progress, being faced by determined German counterattacks. Lucas’ US 6th Corps makes more progress but poor weather and determined resistance limits advances.

The US 5th Air Forces launches 349 aircraft at the Japanese stronghold at Rabaul, New Britian.

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October 13, 1943

The newly formed Italian government declared war on Germany and Italian troops began entering the line to fight their former German allies.

Allied forces announce that all of the New Georgia Island group in the Solomons are in friendly hands.

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October 14, 1943  

The American 8th Air Forces launches the disastrous raid against the ball-bearing works at Schweinfurt. 291 B-17 Flying Fortresses, flying without fighter escorts, did limited damage to the factory complex. The Americans lost 60 bombers shot down and another 120 were damaged beyond repair. Because of this disaster, it was decided to end all unescorted daylight bombing raids over Germany.

Zaporozhye is captured by Soviet forces. German forces resist Red Army attacks at Melitopol as the German rail line into the Crimea is cut.

The US 5th Army attacks along the Volturno River continues as the British 10th Corps established a bridgehead over the river.

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October 15, 1943  

Allied attacks in Italy and Russia continue to gain ground.

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October 16, 1943  

Vatutin’s forces launch attacks out of the Bukrin bridgehead south of Kiev. The attacks are met by several German panzer divisions. Fighting is severe.

German forces begin an organized withdrawal from Volturno River as the US 5th Army offensive grinds forward.

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October 17, 1943  

Soviet forces shatter the Dniepr River line defenses with attacks near Kremenchug.

Japanese forces attempt to strike back in New Guinea launching serious air raids against Oro Bay and ground attacks against Finschafen. Both result in serious losses and failure for the Japanese forces involved.

The US 5th Army takes Liberi and Alvignano.

The German raider Michel is sunk by the American submarine Tarpon. In it’s career of  three years, the armed merchant sunk 17 ships.

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October 18, 1943  

The British 8th Army, after a brief rest period to regroup and resupply, launches its offensive toward the Trigno River while the US 5th Army captures Gioia.

Heavy fighting continues at Melitopol as Soviet forces drive into the center of the town.

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Special Editions:
Pearl Harbor | The Doolittle Raid | Midway

Editor's Corner Archive:

Hitler's Angel "The story of Prescott Bush and his association with the Nazis begins just before the end of World War I..."

The Past Through Tomorrow "It is quite frightening to realize just how similar our nation’s actions have been and appear to be heading when compared this way..."

Afghanistan and Vietnam: When the “war against terrorism” began, many knowledgeable people warned that our operations in Afghanistan would turn into another Vietnam.

Want to Win - Think Before You Lash Out - "If we are serious about taking the war to the enemy, it is time to look ..."

The First Fight Against Fascism - We must remember the Spanish Civil War also.

Arguing Victory - "... Each nation who fought against fascist tyranny in WWII brought with it part of whole needed to defeat that evil..." 

War, Glory, Honor and Remembrance - "War is a brutal and savage insult on human society..."

The First Casualty... in time of war, those in power are even more inclined to hide the truth, since that truth is often manifest in the most gruesome and terrible acts.  

Those wishing to contribute items. stories or comments should contact D.A. Friedrichs

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