17 Jul 1942
  • USS Long Island resumed carrier pilot training operations. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • American submarine Hake was launched. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Whitley aircraft of No. 61 Squadron RAF and Lancaster aircraft of No. 502 Squadron RAF sank German submarine U-751 northwest of Cape Ortegal, Spain, killing all 48 aboard. 1,000 miles West of Angola, German armed merchant cruiser Michel, having pursued since the previous evening, caught up and sank Norwegian tanker Aramis at dusk; 20 were killed, 23 survived and were captured. ww2dbase [Main Article | Event | CPC]
  • Winston Churchill warned Joseph Stalin that, in the aftermath of the convoy PQ-17 disaster, no further convoy missions were in the plans for northern Russia in the foreseeable future. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • In Libya, US Army Middle East Air Force launched B-24 bombers to attack Benghazi and B-17 bombers to attack Tobruk. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • USAAF B-17 bombers attacked Rabaul, New Britain. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Minesweeper HMAS Castlemaine was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • US 11th Air Force bombers attacked Japanese positions at Kiska, Aleutian Islands. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • American destroyer Satterlee was launched. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • British minesweeping trawlers Bardsey and Rosevean and frigates Bentley, Keats, and Kempthorne were launched. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Dutch submarine Zwaardvisch was launched. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Minesweeper HMS Aries was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German submarine U-747 was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • The keel of German submarine U-880 was laid down. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German submarine U-478 was launched. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German submarine U-903 was launched. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Francisco Franco made his annual Civil War anniversary speech. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • In Italy, about 280 American bombers attacked the rail marshalling yard at Naples while RAF bombers attacked Reggio di Calabria. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German occupation forces conducted an anti-patisan operation at Trifolo near Katerini, Greece, rounding up suspected resistance fighters and executing the suspects en masse. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German tanks stopped the Soviet advance north and west of Orel, Russia. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • US Army, US Navy, and New Zealand Air Force aircraft attacked various Japanese bases and shiping in the northern Solomon Islands and New Guinea. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Troops of the Australian 3rd Division and US 41st Division marched from Nassau Bay toward Salamaua, New Guinea. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • The keel of American destroyer escort Swenning was laid down. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • The keel of American destroyer escort Willis was laid down. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Anti-aircraft cruiser USS Oakland was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [CPC]
British Western Pacific Territories
  • A B-17 aircraft of US 435th Bombardment Squadron conducted a photograph reconnaissance mission over Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands. USMC Lieutenant Colonel Merrill Twining and Major William McKean were on board the aircraft; upon seeing the Japanese progress on the Guadalcanal airfield, he noted "I hope they build a good one. We are going to use it." ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • The keel of Canadian frigate Longueil was laid down at Montreal, Quebec, Canada. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Canadian frigate Valleyfield was launched at Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • The keel of British minesweeper Providence was laid down at Toronto, Ontario, Canada. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Australian 24th Brigade and British 44th Royal Tank Regiment, supported by RAF fighters, attacked Miteirya Ridge (also known as Ruin Ridge to Australians) between Tel el Eisa and Ruweisat near El Alamein, Egypt; the offensive initially overran the line held by Italian Trento Division and Italian Trieste Division, but would ultimately be driven back by German tanks and Italian Trento Division. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Chinese 38th Division under Sun Liren arrived at Ramgarh Training Center, India. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
Indian Ocean
  • German submarine U-178 sank transport City of Canton northeast of Beira, Mozambique at 0031 hours; 8 were killed, 76 survived (one of whom was taken prisoner by the Germans). ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • B-17 bombers of the USAAF VIII Bomber Command planned attacks on Hannover and Hamburg, Germany, but both missions were recalled after launch due to poor weather. 33 of the bombers attacked targets of opportunity after receiving the recall order; 21 of them attempted to attack the Fokker factory at Amsterdam, the Netherlands but accidentally dropped bombs on civilian quarters, killing 150. On the same day, B-26 bombers of US VIII Air Support Command attacked Cayeux, France as a diversion to draw German fighters away from the primary targets in Germany. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Heinrich Himmler visited Auschwitz-Birkenau camp in Poland for two days to inspect the construction of crematoriums, inspect the expansion of prisoner barracks, and observe the extermination of two trainloads of Dutch Jews. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • German 1st Panzer Army reached Voroshilovgrad (now Luhansk), Russia. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • He 111 bombers of German Luftwaffe unit II./KG 55, with the new Lotfe 7D bombsights, flew tactical missions in support of German 5th Panzer Army near Rostov-on-Don in southern Russia, destroying the key bridge across the lower Don River. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • A Soviet whaling ship rescued the survivors of Dutch merchant steamer Paulus Potter and US merchant steamer Washington, both of Artic convoy PQ-17, at Novaya Zemlya archipelago, Russia. They were all later transferred to the British steam merchant Empire Tide that was anchored in the Matochkin Strait. ww2dbase [HM]
  • Adolf Hitler traveled from the Wolfsschanze headquarters in East Prussia, Germany to the headquarters in Vinnitsa, Ukraine. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
US Pacific Islands
  • A detachment consisted of 225 men and 4 officers of the US Navy 5th Construction Battalion arrived at Midway Atoll. The remainder of the battalion would arrive during the following month. They were to build an airfield and an underground hospital on Sand Island. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 17 Jul 1942
British troops at a defensive position near El Alamein, Egypt, 17 Jul 1942Aerial photograph of North Head Kiska Harbor, Kiska Island, Alaska during a bombing mission, 17 Jul 1942. Note the notations made by the photo analysts.

17 Jul 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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Famous WW2 Quote
"The raising of that flag on Suribachi means a Marine Corps for the next 500 years."

James Forrestal, Secretary of the Navy, 23 Feb 1945