24 May 1942
  • German forces launched Operation Hannover to clear the Bryanks-Vyazma rail line of partisans. ww2dbase [TH]
  • The first battalion of Spanish volunteers who fought under the German banner returned to Spain after completing a tour in Russia; up until this point, only the wounded were sent back to Spain from the Eastern Front. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German submarine U-502 sank Brazilian ship Gonçalves Dias 100 miles south of Santa Domingo, Dominican Republic; 6 were killed, 39 survived. U-103 sank Dutch ship Hetor 60 miles northwest of Grand Cayman island at 1640 hours; 2 were killed, 29 survived. ww2dbase [Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico Campaigns | CPC]
  • British trawler HMS Retriever broke away from Allied convoy PQ-16 and returned for Iceland. ww2dbase [Arctic Convoys | CPC]
  • The floatplane of Japanese submarine I-9 conducted a reconnaissance mission over Kiska and Amchitka Islands in the US Territory of Alaska. ww2dbase [CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • Comandante Cappellini sighted Argentinian freighter Rio De La Plata in the Atlantic Ocean at 0907 hours; no action was taken. At 1020 hours, she sighted an American cruiser escorted by destroyers, and she submerged to avoid detection, resurfacing at 1347 hours. At 1630 hours, she sighted a tanker and approached, but gave up the pursuit when she determined the target to be an Argentinian ship. ww2dbase [Comandante Cappellini | Second Happy Time | CPC]
Australia Australian New Guinea
  • 3 US B-26 Marauder bombers attacked Rabaul, New Britain, destroying the Genzan Air Group headquarters building and destroying four land-attack aircraft on the ground; 2 of the US bombers were damaged during this attack. ww2dbase [Rabaul, New Britain | CPC]
Japan New Zealand
  • Warrant Officer Susumo Ito, flying in a submarine-based (submarine I-21) E14Y aircraft, conducted a photographic reconnaissance mission over Auckland, New Zealand. The Auckland airport controllers mistook the Japanese aircraft for a friendly one and turned on the landing lights. ww2dbase [E14Y | Auckland | CPC]
Pacific Ocean
  • All American warships in the Coral Sea area were recalled to Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii in anticipation of the Japanese attack on Midway Atoll. ww2dbase [Battle of Midway and the Aleutian Islands | CPC]
  • While in the Solomon Sea, USS S-43 suffered a air compressor breakdown with her main engine. ww2dbase [S-43 | Solomon Sea | CPC]
  • USS Pompano sank Japanese fishing vessel Kotoku Maru with the deck gun 20 miles northeast of Taiwan. ww2dbase [Pompano | CPC]
Ukraine United Kingdom
  • German bombers attacked the Royal Navy seaplane training center at Poole in southern England, United Kingdom. ww2dbase [Battle of Britain | Poole, England | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 24 May 1942
US Navy pilot Lieutenant Commander Lance E. Massey of Torpedo Squadron 3 in his TBD-1 Devastator aircraft, Naval Air Station Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, 24 May 1942

24 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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George Patton, 31 May 1944

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