11 Mar 1943
  • Tirpitz departed Trondheim, Norway. ww2dbase [Tirpitz | CPC]
  • Erwin Rommel received Diamonds to his Knight's Cross medal. ww2dbase [Erwin Rommel | CPC]
  • German RSHA organization ordered that all Jews in the criminal rehabilitation system were to be sent to Auschwitz or Majdanek concentration camps, where they would remain indefinitely, after they served their sentences. Meanwhile, Bulgarian troops arrested 7,100 Macedonian Jews and deported them to the new Skopje Concentration Camp in Yugoslavia. ww2dbase [Discovery of Concentration Camps and the Holocaust | CPC]
  • Joseph Goebbels ordered the SS and Security Police to round up the 4,000 Berlin Jews who had escaped Operation Factory at the end of Feb 1943. ww2dbase [Joseph Goebbels | CPC]
  • British Secretary of State for Air Sir Archibald Sinclair spoke at the House of Commons, noting that "[t]he past 12 months have been marked by striking changes in the conduct and effectiveness of... the pulverising offensive of Bomber Command.... The monster raids saturating the enemy's active and passive systems of defence is one example. A second example is the success achieved in finding, marking and illuminating targets which has contributed enormously to the recent triumphs of Bomber Command.... Praise the men who are striking these hammer blows at German might... fearless young men flying through storm and cold and darkness higher than Mont Blanc, through the flak, hunted by the night fighters, but coolly and skillfully identifying and bombing these targets." Some Members of Parliament, such as Mr. Montague, representing West Islington, voiced concerns for the "wanton destruction" delivered by the Bomber Command. ww2dbase [Bombing of Hamburg, Dresden, and Other Cities | CPC]
  • The British Admiralty officially announced the loss of submarine P311, suspected to have been lost to a mine in the Mediterranean Sea on 8 Jan 1943. ww2dbase [AC]
  • USS New Mexico arrived at Samoa. ww2dbase [New Mexico | CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • At 0752 hours the 2,493-ton Honduran steam merchant Olancho was hit by a torpedo from German submarine U-183 about 30 miles west of Cape San Antonio, Cuba. The torpedo struck on the starboard side ripping open the hull and demolishing the wheelhouse and starboard engine wing. The engine room flooded immediately and the port engine could not be stopped thus the ship kept going at full speed in circles until the screw was clear of the water due to the settling by the bow. After another torpedo hit, the ship sank. The 41 crew members and five armed guards abandoned ship after the second torpedo hit in one lifeboat, on one raft and by jumping overboard. Two men went under with the suction of the sinking ship after they jumped from the stern and one was hit by the turning screw and later died after being picked up by the raft. Seven more survivors clung to a hatch cover. The occupants of the lifeboat and the nine men on the raft were picked up at 1255 hours by the Honduran steam merchant Choluteca. ww2dbase [Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico Campaigns | Gulf of Mexico | HM]
  • The destroyer HMS Harvester, flagship of the escort group B3, escorting convoy HX-228, stopped and picked up survivors from the American Liberty ship William C. Gorgas which had been sunk by German submarine U-757. The destroyer returned to the convoy and sighted German submarine U-444 which dived but was forced to the surface by depth charges. Harvester then rammed the submarine and the two vessels became locked for a while. The submarine then pulled away but was again rammed, this time by the French corvette FFL Aconit (K 58), and sank. The badly damaged British destroyer could not make way and was soon hit by two torpedoes from German submarine U-432. The ship sank quickly and seven officers, 136 crew and 39 survivors were lost. The French corvette then returned to the scene and sank U-432 with depth charges and ramming. She then picked up four crewmen from U-444, 20 from U-432 plus 60 from the Harvester, including 12 from the American Liberty ship. The 5,001-ton Norwegian steam merchant Brandt County was also sunk in the attack on convoy HX-228. Brandt County was carrying 5330 tons of general cargo, a large amount of carbide and 670 tons of ammunition. She was hit by one torpedo, which ignited her load of carbide. Of the five men on the bridge, three managed to get to the lifeboat and the other two died. Three of the four men in the engine room died and the fourth was unable to stop the engine but managed to get on deck. Among the dead were also eight military passengers. The 24 survivors abandoned ship in one lifeboat and when it was about 200 metres away the flames reached the cargo of explosives. The Brant County disappeared in a huge explosion, which sent pieces of metal and other debris in the air. The survivors were picked up after 30 minutes by the British steam merchant Stuart Prince. One of them was badly burned and died shortly thereafter. At 0215 hours German submarine U-590 joined in the attack and reported a ship sunk, in actual fact one torpedo hit the 5,464-ton British cargo ship Jamaica Producer the ship was able to continue and get to port where she was repaired and returned to service in May 1943. ww2dbase [Arctic Convoys | HM]
  • While escorting Auxiliary Aircraft Carrier USS Bogue in the mid-Atlantic, destroyer USS Belknap discovered a lifeboat from freighter SS Jonathan Sturges. Belknap recovered 21 survivors, 18 from Jonathan Sturges and 3 Dutch seaman from SS Madoera. Jonathan Sturges and Madoera had been sunk 15 days earlier by German submarines U-707 and U-653 respectively during Wolfpack Ritter’s attacks on Convoy ON-166 bound for New York from Liverpool. [Another Jonathan Sturges lifeboat with 6 survivors was located by U-336 on 6 Apr 1943; all 6 were taken POW.] ww2dbase [Bogue | DS]
Baltic Sea
  • The 124-ton Danish trawler Inger hit a mine in the Baltic Sea and sank whilst travelling from Flensburg, Germany to Ă…rhus, Denmark; two of the four-man crew were killed. ww2dbase [HM]
Caroline Islands
  • Repair ship Akashi completed the repair work for destroyer Akizuki and began repairing auxiliary aircraft transport Keiyo Maru at Truk, Caroline Islands. ww2dbase [Akashi | Truk | CPC]
Hawaii Indian Ocean
  • At 2310 hours the 4,986-ton unescorted British steam merchant Aelybryn was hit by two G7a torpedoes from German submarine U-160 in the Indian Ocean east-northeast of Durban, South Africa. The ship sank after being hit by a G7a coup de grâce shortly after. Nine crew members were lost. The master, 27 crew members and four gunners were picked up by the Portuguese steam passenger ship Lourenço Marques and landed at Capetown, South Africa. The submarine's commanding officer Oberleutnant zur See Gerd von Pommer-Esche mistakenly recorded the name of the sunken ship as "Arian". ww2dbase [HM]
  • HMS Norwich City (FY 229) rescued one of the lifeboats containing 19 survivors of American merchant ship James B. Stephens, which had been sunk by German submarine U-160 on 8 Mar 1943. The survivors would be taken to Durban, South Africa. ww2dbase [CPC]
Norway Pacific Ocean
  • USS Wahoo arrived in waters between southern Japan and Taiwan. ww2dbase [Wahoo | CPC]
  • The BI-3 rocket-powered prototype aircraft took its first flight at Sverdlovsk (now Yekaterinburg), Sverdlovsk Oblast, Russia (the fourth flight of the design), reaching the altitude of 4,000 meters. ww2dbase [BI | Sverdlovsk | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • The royalist Yugoslavian government-in-exile in London, England, United Kingdom reported that German forces had executed 1,250 Serbians in Belgrade, Yugoslavia. ww2dbase [London, England | CPC]
United States
  • The Pacific Military Conference began at the Munitions Building in Washington DC, United States. Henry Arnold, George Marshall, Ernest King, William Leahy, Geroge Kenney, and Richard Sutherland were among the attendees of the opening meeting. ww2dbase [Henry Arnold | Washington | CPC]
  • The request for the posthumous award of the Medal of Honor for Brigadier General Kenneth Walker was approved. ww2dbase [CPC]
US Pacific Islands Photo(s) dated 11 Mar 1943
A female Japanese-American stenographer at the Jerome Relocation Center, Arkansas, United States, 11 Mar 1943

11 Mar 1943 Interactive Map

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, Hugh Martyr, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis

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