This day in military history.. - Page 102

July 3rd, 2010  

July 3rd
1940: Heavy units of the British Navy, codenamed Force H (Somerville), launch an attack (Operation Catapult) on the French fleet stationed at Mers-el-Kebir near Oran in Algeria, sinking the battleship Bretagne and heavily damaging the battleship Provence and the battlecruiser Dunkerque. 1,300 French sailors are killed and hundreds wounded. Reaction in both occupied and Vichy France is one of shock and outrage at this totally unexpected and ruthless action by their former ally. Some 59 other French warships that had sought refuge at Plymouth and Portsmouth are seized by the Royal Navy, but only after overcoming armed French resistance in some cases.
1941: For the first time since the beginning of the German attack on the Soviet Union, Stalin speaks to the Russian people over the radio. Demanding utmost resistance 'in our patriotic war against German Fascism', he calls for a policy of scorched earth if the Red Army is forced to yield ground and the formation of 'people's partisan' groups behind enemy lines, as well as the summary execution of all cowards and shirkers.
1942: In Egypt, due to exhaustion and lack of supplies, especially fuel for the armored divisions, German and Italian forces of the Afrikakorps suspend all offensive operations before El Alamein and begin constructing defensive positions.
1943: In the East, the opening of Unternehmen Zitadelle (Operation Citadel), the massive German counter-offensive to encircle and destroy the Soviet forces in the Orel-Belgorod salient near Kursk. is delayed by one day because of heavy Soviet air attacks against the German deployment areas. The RAF carries out a heavy night raid on Cologne, causing considerable damage and killing hundreds of civilians.
1944: In the East, 28 divisions of Heeresgruppe Mitte (Model) are encircled or destroyed by the Soviet 1st and 3rd Belorussian Fronts in the Minsk area. The Soviets claim 400,000 German dead and 158,000 taken prisoner.

1812: St. Clair River - Frederic Rolette 1785-1831 captures General William Hull's schooner Cayahoga and finds Hull's battle plans; War of 1812.
1814: Fort Erie Ontario - Major General Jacob Brown crosses Niagara River and captures poorly defended Fort Erie from the British; War of 1812.
1942: Washington DC - Canada and the United States form joint military, naval, and air office in Washington.

1900: Leeuw Kop, South Africa - 400 Imperial Bushmen in action at Leeuw Kop, South Africa.
1950: Pilots of No. 77 Squadron involved in friendly fire incident - Pilots of No. 77 Squadron accidentally destroy a train carrying American and Republic of Korea soldiers having been assured by the United States 5th Air Force Tactical Control Centre that the area under attack was in North Korean hands.

1898 - At Battle of Santiago, Cuba, RADM Sampson's squadron destroys Spanish fleet
1950 - USS Valley Forge and HMS Triumph participate in first carrier action of Korean Conflict. VF-51 aircraft (Valley Forge) shoot down 2 North Korean aircraft. The action is first combat test of F9F Panther and A1D Skyraider.

1775: George Washington rides out in front of the American troops gathered at Cambridge common in Massachusetts and draws his sword, formally taking command of the Continental Army. Washington, a prominent Virginia planter and veteran of the French and Indian War, had been appointed commander in chief by the Continental Congress two weeks before. In agreeing to serve the American colonies in their war for independence, he declined to accept payment for his services beyond reimbursement of future expenses.
1863: Pickett leads his infamous charge at Gettysburg - Troops under Confederate General George Pickett begin a massive attack against the center of the Union lines at Gettysburg on the climactic third day of the Battle of Gettysburg, the largest engagement of the war. General Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia encountered George Meade's Army of the Potomac in Pennsylvania and battered the Yankees for two days. The day before Pickett's charge, the Confederates had hammered each flank of the Union line but could not break through.
1940: Operation Catapult is launched - 1940, British naval forces destroy the French fleet at Mers-el-Kebir, a port in Algeria, in order to prevent Germany from co-opting the French ships to use in an invasion of Britain.
1968: U.S. command announces new high in casualties - The U.S. command in Saigon releases figures showing that more Americans were killed during the first six months of 1968 than in all of 1967. These casualty figures were a direct result of the heavy fighting that had occurred during, and immediately after, the communist Tet Offensive. The timing and magnitude of the attacks caught the South Vietnamese and American forces completely off guard, but eventually the Allied forces turned the tide. Militarily, the Tet Offensive was a disaster for the communists. By the end of March 1968, they had not achieved any of their objectives and had lost 32,000 soldiers with 5,800 captured. U.S. forces suffered 3,895 dead; South Vietnamese losses were 4,954; non-U.S. allies lost 214. More than 14,300 South Vietnamese civilians died.

1916: The Battle of the Somme begins. More than 100,000 men are killed in the first day.
1944: The U.S. First Army opens a general offensive to break out of the hedgerow area of Normandy, France.
1945: U.S. troops land at Balikpapan and take Sepinggan airfield on Borneo in the Pacific.

July 3rd, 2010  
July 3
324 Battle of Adrianople
1754 Ft. Necessity surrenders to the French
1866 Battle of Koniggratz
1988 USS Vincennes shoots down Iran Air flight 655 over the Persian Gulf
July 4th, 2010  
July 4
1187 Battle of Hattin
1253 Battle of West-Capelle
1456 Siege of Belgrade begins
1610 Battle of Klushino
1802 US Military Academy opens @ West Point, N.Y.
1863 Siege of Vicksburg ends with C.S. forces surrendering to Grant. Battle of Helena, Ark.
1976 Israeli commandos free hostages held @ Uganda's Entebbe airport.
July 5th, 2010  
July 5
1316 Battle of Manolada
1770 Battle of Chesma
1809 Battle of Wagram, 1st day
1814 Battle of Chippewa, Canada
1833 3rd(?) naval Battle of Cape St. Vincent
1861 Battle of Carthage, Mo
1943 Battle of Kursk begins
1945 Philipines declared liberated
1950 Battle of Osan US troops fight N. Koreans for 1st time with the arrival of Task Force Smith.
July 6th, 2010  
July 6
371 B.C. Battle of Leuctra
1044 Battle of Menfo
1495 Battle of Fornovo
1630 Sweden invades Pomerania
1777 Amerricans abandon Ft. Ticonderoga to the British
1801 naval Battle of Algecitus
1809 Battle of Wagram, 2nd day
1917 Arabs & Lawrence of Arabia capture Aqaba from the Ottomans
1967 Nigeria invades Biafra.
July 7th, 2010  
July 7
1543 france invades Luxembourg
1575 Raid of the Redeswire, Scotland
1770 Battle of Larga
1777 Battle of Hubbardton
1846 US troops occupy Moterey & Yerba Buena, California
1915 Battle of Isonzo
1937 Battle of Logou Bridge, China
July 8th, 2010  
July 8
1283 naval Battle of Malta
1709 Battle of Poltava
1716 Battle of Dynekilen
1758 Unsucsessfull British attack on Ft. Carillon (much later renamed Ticonderoga)
1760 Battle of Restigouche
1863 Port Hudson, La surrenders, longest siege of the War.
July 8th, 2010  

July 8th

1941: In the East, Panzergruppe 4 (Hoepner) of Heeresgruppe Nord (von Leeb) captures Pskov and advances toward Novgorod and Leningrad. Germany and Italy announce the dissolution of the state of Yugoslavia, with large portions annexed by Italy; an independent state of Croatia, allied to the Axis and with its capital at Agram (Zagreb), is proclaimed.
1942: In the East, 4.Panzerarmee (Hoth) at Voronesh begins an offensive SE along the west bank of the Don to meet up with 6.Armee (Paulus) advancing E toward the Don from Charkov with the objective of establishing bridgeheads across the river in the Kalach area and continue on to capture Stalingrad on the Volga. Axis bombers carry out raids on harbor facilities at Malta in the Mediterranean.
1943: The battle of Kursk is about to reach its climax, with the exhausted German forces unable to make any further gains while losing vast numbers of men, tanks and planes. Soviet claims for the day are 304 tanks and 161 aircraft, the German 400 tanks and 193 aircraft.
1944: In the West, the British Second Army (Dempsey) begins a major attack (Operation Epsom) to capture Caen. In the East, the Soviet 1st Belorussian Front recaptures Baranovichi NW of Brest-Litovsk.

1950: Gen. Douglas MacArthur was named commander-in-chief of United Nations forces in Korea.

1959: First Americans killed in South Vietnam - Maj. Dale R. Ruis and Master Sgt. Chester M. Ovnand become the first Americans killed in the American phase of the Vietnam War when guerrillas strike a Military Assistance Advisory Group (MAAG) compound in Bien Hoa, 20 miles northeast of Saigon. The group had arrived in South Vietnam on November 1, 1955, to provide military assistance. The organization consisted of U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps personnel who provided advice and assistance to the Ministry of Defense, Joint General Staff, corps and division commanders, training centers, and province and district headquarters.

1944: Caen France - The 3rd Canadian Division and 1st British Corps and move into the city; the 9th Canadian takes both Buron and Authie; the 7th Brigade captures Cussy and Ardenne; the 8th Brigade completes its capture of Carpiquet as the Germans are pulled back.

1778 - Allied French fleet under Comte d'Estaing arrives in America.
1853 - Commodore Matthew C. Perry sails his squadron into Tokyo Bay.
1879 - USS Jeannette departs San Francisco to explore Arctic.
1944 - Naval bombardment of Guam begins.


1942: 460 Squadron raids Wilhelmshaven - 13 Wellingtons of 460 Squadron participated in a night time bombing raid on this major German port severely damaging an armour plate shop and the Deutsche Werke ship building yards.

July 9th, 2010  
July 9
1755 Battle of Monogahela,Pa Braddock's Defeat by French & Indians
1790 naval Battle of Svenksund, 1st day
1864 Early's Washington Raid: Battle of Monocacy, Md
1943 Allies invade Sicily
1944 US captures Saipan. Battle of Tali-Ihantala ends with Finnish victory over Russians
July 11th, 2010  
July 10
48 B.C. Battle of Dyrrhachium
1460 Battle of Northampton
1645 Battle of Langport
1940 Battle of Britain begins