16 May 1942
  • USS Enterprise received orders to return to Pearl Harbor. ww2dbase [Enterprise | CPC]
  • USS Hornet received orders to return to Pearl Harbor. ww2dbase [Hornet (Yorktown-class) | CPC]
  • German submarine U-751 sank US freighter Nicarao 50 kilometers east of the Bahamas at 0415 hours; 8 were killed, 31 survived. ww2dbase [Second Happy Time | CPC]
  • German submarine U-507 sank Honduran ship Amapala in the Gulf of Mexico at 0000 hours; 1 was killed, 56 survived. German submarine U-506 damaged US tankers Sun and William C. McTarnahan (killing 18 of 38 aboard) and sank US tanker Gulfoil (killing 21 of 40 aboard) 50 kilometers south of New Orleans, Louisiana, United States. ww2dbase [Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico Campaigns | CPC]
  • Destroyer Yuzuki departed Ocean and Nauru Islands area for Truk, Caroline Islands. ww2dbase [Yuzuki | CPC]
  • Corsaro was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [Corsaro | CPC]
  • The first operational use of "Kittybombers" in the western desert (P-40 Kittyhawk fighters equipped with a bomb rack for a 500-lb bomb) occured when six aircraft of No. 112 squadron RAF attacked an enemy camp east of the main road near Bomba, Libya. ww2dbase [P-40 Warhawk | AC]
  • USS Tautog damaged Japanese cargo ship Goyo Maru in the Caroline Islands, forcing her to beach to prevent sinking. ww2dbase [Tautog | CPC]
  • Pressured by the United States, the French Navy placed √Čmile Bertin out of service at Fort-de-France, Martinique. ww2dbase [√Čmile Bertin | CPC]
  • No. 112 Squadron RAAF was declared operational in North Africa. It would the Allied Desert Air Force's first Kittybomber unit. ww2dbase [P-40 Warhawk | CPC]
France Hawaii India
  • Japanese bombers attacked Imphal, India. ww2dbase [Imphal, Manipur | CPC]
  • Hans-Joachim Marseille shot down two Australian P-40 fighters, Sergeant T. V. Teede at 1805 hours and Pilot Officer Dudley Parker at 1815 hours, near Ain el Gazala, Libya, raising his kill score to 60. When Parker's fighter went down, it crashed into another fighter piloted by W. J. Metherall, causing Metherall to crash and become killed; this was not witnessed by the Germans and thus did not count toward Marseille's score. ww2dbase [Hans-Joachim Marseille | Gazala | CPC]
Norway Poland Russia
  • German troops captured the city of Kerch and the namesake peninsula in Russia; Soviet troops in the area began a 5-day evacuation under heavy fire. ww2dbase [Battle of Sevastopol | Kerch, Krym | TH, CPC]
  • Near Kharkov, Ukraine, the Soviet 28th Army's offensive was halted. To the south, Soviet 6th Guards Cavalry Corps reached Krasnograd, but their support tanks were 15 miles behind the front lines and could not arrive at the front fast enough to maintain the forward momentum. ww2dbase [Second Battle of Kharkov | Krasnograd, Kharkov | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 16 May 1942
Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Major-General Brian Horrocks aboard a Covenanter tank of 4th/7th Royal Dragoon Guards, British 27th Armoured Brigade near Newmarket, Suffolk, England, United Kingdom, 16 May 1942; note H. V. Evatt in second tankPrime Minister Winston Churchill and Major-General Brian Horrocks inspecting British 9th Armoured Division atop a Covenanter tank of 4th/7th Royal Dragoon Guards, new Newmarket, Suffolk, England, United Kingdom, 16 May 1942

16 May 1942 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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"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. You win the war by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country!"

George Patton, 31 May 1944

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