12 Jun 1940
  • The Commander-in-Chief of Home Defense of the United Kingdom Edmond Ironside completed a plan for defense against a potential German invasion. ww2dbase [TH]
  • British transports of Group II arrived in the Clyde, Scotland at 2300 hours with troops evacuated from Narvik, Norway. The French troops evacuated were later sent to Brest and Lorient to join the fight against the invading German forces. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German submarine U-101 sank British ship Earlspark off Cape Finisterre, Spain at 1200 hours, killing 7 and sinking 7,500 tons of coal. Also off Cape Finisterre, U-46 sank British ship Barbara Marie at 1938 hours, killing 32 and sinking 7,200 tons of iron ore, and then sinking Willowbank at 1946 hours. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • The Navy Department of the United States placed contracts for 22 new warships. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • The Japan-Thailand Non-Aggression Pact was announced. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • USS Quincy arrived at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. ww2dbase [Quincy (New Orleans-class) | CPC]
  • The Soviet Baltic Fleet received orders to blockade Estonia. ww2dbase [Annexation of the Baltic States | CPC]
  • Friedrich-Wilhelm Müller was awarded the Iron Cross 2nd Class medal. ww2dbase [Friedrich-Wilhelm Müller | CPC]
  • HMS Cumberland was joined by HM Cruiser Devonshire until 14 Jun 1940 when Devonshire was replaced by ships from Home Fleet including HM Battleship Hood and HM Aircraft Carrier Argus. ww2dbase [Cumberland | Devonshire | Argus | Hood | DS]
China France
  • German tanks under Guderian crossed the Marne River at Chalons-sur-Marne, 80 miles east of Paris, France. Meanwhile, in the French capital, US Ambassador William Bullitt, the last ambassador of a major nation left in the city, was named the provisional governor of Paris as the French government moved to Tours. ww2dbase [Invasion of France and the Low Countries | Paris | TH, CPC]
  • French Admiral François Darlan, Commander-in-Chief of the French Navy, assured British Prime Minister Winston Churchill that there would be no question of surrendering the French naval ships. He further asserted that orders would be given to scuttle the ships if such a danger were to exist. ww2dbase [François Darlan | Scuttling of the French Fleet | AC]
French West Africa Germany Mediterranean Sea
  • The elderly Royal Navy Cruiser HMS Calypso (Captain H. H. Rowley) was torpedoed and sunk by an Italian submarine in the Mediterranean Sea south of Crete, Greece. Survivors were picked up by the Cruiser HMS Caledon (pendant H53) and the destroyer HMS Dainty (pendant I53). Out of a complement of 400 to 500 (many of whom were recalled pensioners and reservists of the RNR and RNVR) one RNR officer and 39 ratings were lost. ww2dbase [AC]
  • Morosini sighted Greek freighter Styliani or Stylianos Chandris 85 miles southeast of Cape Palos, Spain in the western Mediterranean Sea at 0745 hours, but was unable to gain an attack position. ww2dbase [Morosini | CPC]
  • Alpino Bagnolini sighted two shadows in the Mediterranean Sea 80 kilometers (50 miles) south of Cape Lithion, Crete, Greece at 0050 hours. At 0056, the commanding officer, Franco Pittoni, determined them to be enemy warships and ordered an attack on the surface. A bow torpedo was fired at 0058 hours, scoring a hit on the starboard side a minute later, and the submarine dove to avoid the expected counterattack. The target was British cruiser HMS Calypso, which sank at 0335 hours. 39 were killed. 139 survivors were picked up by HMS Caledon and 280 survivors were picked up by HMS Dainty, and they were later landed at Alexandria, Egypt. ww2dbase [Alpino Bagnolini | CPC]
United States
  • Vannevar Bush and Commerce Secretary Harry L. Hopkins met with President Franklin Roosevelt and proposed the formation of the National Defense Research Committee. Within 10 minutes, Roosevelt approved it writing "OK-FDR" on the single-page outline Bush had brought with him. ww2dbase [White House | Franklin Roosevelt | Vannevar Bush | White House, Washington DC | DS]
  • The order for the construction of battleships Missouri and Wisconsin was issued. ww2dbase [Missouri | Wisconsin | CPC]

12 Jun 1940 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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