21 Apr 1945
  • Feldmarschall Model committed suicide. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Soviet 1st Ukrainian Front captured Bautzen and Cottbus, Germany. ww2dbase [TH]
  • Soviet infantry reached Berlin, Germany. Adolf Hitler ordered an all-out counterattack against the Soviets at Berlin under the command of SS General Felix Steiner; this counterattack was never to be attempted. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • US Ninth Army captured Blankenburg, Germany. ww2dbase [TH]
  • US First Army captured Dessau, Germany. ww2dbase [TH]
  • At the end of the Ruhr battle in Germany, 325,000 Germans were taken prisoner. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Americans declared Ie Shima, Japan secure. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • 200 to 300 German civilians from Gardelegen, Saxony, Germany were ordered by the US Army commander in the region to bury the 1,016 political and military prisoners who had been massacred by German SS and Luftwaffe troops on 13 Apr 1945. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Louis Mountbatten scheduled Operation Dracula against Rangoon, Burma for 2 May 1945. William Slim hastened his units overland toward Rangoon in an attempt to reach Rangoon before Dracula commenced. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Yukio Araki engaged American P-51 fighters over China. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • International Red Cross representatives visited the Theresienstadt Concentration Camp. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • On the orders of Finnish Home Secretary Yrjö Leino, which were dictated by Allied Control Commission chief Andrei Zhdanov (but acting on behalf of Soviet SMERSH rather than the Allies), 20 men (most of whom Finnish citizens) were arrested and turned over to the Soviet SMERSH. 2 others were targeted for arrest but they were able to escape capture. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • French First Army captured Stuttgart, Germany. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • Soviet troops under Ivan Konev captured the German military headquarters near Zossen, south of Berlin, Germany. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • During the night (with the Red army already entering the suburbs) RAF Bomber Command attacked Berlin, Germany for the last time during the war. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
  • Theodor Morell was dismissed from his position as Adolf Hitler's personal physician, and departed the Führerbunker in Berlin, Germany in the evening. He was replaced by Ludwig Stumpfegger. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Thousands of prisoners were marched out of Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp in Germany toward the northeast, ahead of oncoming Soviet troops. Many of them would die en route. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • 3rd Carpathian Infantry Division of Polish II Corps captured Bologna, Italy with assistance from US 34th Division. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH, CPC]
  • Daniel Inouye led his platoon in destroying three German machine gun positions on the Gothic Line near San Terenzo, Italy, suffering a bullet wound in the stomach, a severed arm, and a bullet wound in the leg in the process. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS New Mexico arrived off Okinawa, Japan waters. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Boarfish arrived at Subic Bay, Philippine Islands, ending her second war patrol. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Viktor Abakumov was awarded the Order of Kutuzov 1st Class for the successful execution of the radio game "Tuman" involving Pyotr Tavrin, a Russian national who spied for the Germans. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Philippine air force began near-daily strikes on Japanese positions on Taiwan. ww2dbase [CPC]
Photo(s) dated 21 Apr 1945
USS Whale off Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, United States, 21 Apr 1945Stern view of USS Whale off Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, United States, 21 Apr 1945Bow view of USS Whale off Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, United States, 21 Apr 1945Starboard view of USS Whale off Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, United States, 21 Apr 1945
See all photos dated 21 Apr 1945

21 Apr 1945 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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Famous WW2 Quote
"I have returned. By the grace of Almighty God, our forces stand again on Philippine soil."

General Douglas MacArthur at Leyte, 17 Oct 1944