18 Jul 1945

  • US Eleventh Air Force launched two routine search and weather missions in the Aleutian Islands. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada had a miraculous escape when the Bedford Naval magazine blew up. Thousands were evacuated as explosions rocked the town for 24 hours, but battling firemen managed to prevent the flames from reaching the main magazine. Fortunately there were only fifteen casualties of which only one proved fatal. ww2dbase [Halifax, Nova Scotia | AC]
  • In Canada, corvettes HMCS Battleford and HMCS Mimico were decommissioned at Sorel, Quebec while corvette HMCS Lindsay was decommissioned at Sydney, Nova Scotia. ww2dbase [Sydney, Nova Scotia | CPC]
  • Canadian frigate HMCS Runnymede arrived at Esquimalt, British Columbia, Canada from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. ww2dbase [Halifax, Nova Scotia | CPC]
  • 214 US aircraft attacked the Japanese airfield at Shanghai, China. ww2dbase [Shanghai | CPC]
Dutch East Indies
  • British submarine HMS Trenchant attacked a Japanese convoy northwest of Lombok Island, Dutch East Indies, sinking the Army shuttle vessel Hayabusa Maru and damaged the cargo ships Taikyo Maru, Nichiei Maru and Saiwai Maru. Later in the day, the submarine attacked and sank a small submarine chaser, tug and barge, by gunfire. ww2dbase [HM]
French Indochina
  • Men under the control of crime lord Tsang Hoc-tam, who had strong ties with the Japanese puppet government in Nanjing, China, took control of the French treaty port of Kouang-Tchéou-Wan (Chinese: Guangzhouwan) in southern China with implicit permission of Japan which had held the local French governor as a puppet since Mar 1945. Tsang's men rounded up all French adults in the Banque de l'Indochine building. ww2dbase [Kouang-Tchéou-Wan | CPC]
Germany Guam
  • The headquarters of the US Army Strategic Air Forces in the Pacific was established on Guam, Mariana Islands under General Carl Spaatz. ww2dbase [Carl Spaatz | CPC]
Hawaii Japan
  • American battleships USS North Carolina, USS Alabama, USS Iowa, USS Missouri, and USS Wisconsin and British battleship HMS King George V bombarded Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan with 2,000 shells; the Taga Works and Mito Works of Hitachi Manufacturing Company were moderately damaged, and the Yamate Plant and the copper refining plants of Hitachi Mine were lightly damaged; civilian housing areas were also attacked, causing many deaths. Japanese battleship Nagato was damaged in port at Yokosuka, Japan by aircraft from carrier USS Shangri-La; a Japanese destroyer, a submarine, and three smaller vessels were sunk during the attack on Yokosuka. Aircraft from USS Yorktown struck the Tokyo area. P-47 Thunderbolt and P-51 Mustang aircraft of US Far East Air Forces attacked various targets on Kyushu and the Ryukyu Islands, Japan, focusing largely on communications lines, bridges, shipping, and population centers. ww2dbase [Iowa | Alabama | Shangri-La | King George V | North Carolina | Yorktown (Essex-class) | Nagato | Wisconsin | Preparations for Invasion of Japan | Missouri | Hitachi, Ibaraki | CPC]
  • Lieutenant William Bell Asbridge, Corsair fighter pilot stationed flying from HMS Formidable, was shot down and killed in action near Tokyo, Japan. ww2dbase [Formidable | Tokyo | CPC]
  • The air groups of submarines I-400 and I-401 held a farewell dinner in Maizuru, Japan before their planned suicide mission against Ulithi, Caroline Islands. Lieutenant Commander Nobukiyo Nambu, commanding officer of I-401, secretly invited some of the airmen's family members as a nice gesture. ww2dbase [Nobukiyo Nambu | Maizuru, Kyoto | CPC]
  • USS Yorktown (Essex-class) launched raids on the Tokyo area. ww2dbase [Tokyo | DS]
  • Kasuga capsized in her mooring during a US Navy raid on Yokosuka, Japan. ww2dbase [Kasuga | Preparations for Invasion of Japan | Yokosuka, Kanagawa | CPC]
  • The 3,593-ton Japanese railway passenger ferry Soya Maru departed Wakkanai, Hokkaido, Japan for Odomari (now Korsakov, Russia) carrying over 600 passengers including women and children, escorted by anti-submarine vessel CD-112. As the two ships crossed the mouth of the Magotsue River, the American submarine USS Barb (SS 220) sighted them and fired two and then three torpedoes at the convoy. Of the two torpedoes in the first salvo, one exploded on the nearby shoreline, and the other was seen by lookouts on the Soya Maru heading straight for CD-112. When the torpedo struck CD-112, it set off the depth charges aboard the ship, blowing her apart in a huge explosion. The commanding officer Shunichiro Ishiwatari and 199 of her crew were killed. The ferry went on ahead unharmed. ww2dbase [Barb | Karafuto | HM]
  • Japanese transport Tenya Maru sank north of Honshu island, Japan for unknown reason. ww2dbase [HM]
  • Escort destroyer Yaezakura, construction not yet completed and had been abandoned since the previous month, was destroyed in a US Navy raid on Yokosuka, Japan. ww2dbase [Preparations for Invasion of Japan | Yokosuka, Kanagawa | HM]
  • Submarine chaser Harushima and auxiliary patrol vessels Pa No. 37, Pa No. 110, and Pa. No 122 were sunk by US Navy aircraft in the Yokosuka, Japan area. ww2dbase [Preparations for Invasion of Japan | Kanagawa | HM]
  • American naval land-based aircraft attacked targets off Kawajiri and Tsushima Island, Japan; the 1,368-ton merchant steamer Chishima Maru and the cargo steamers Tagami Maru and Shintai Maru were sunk. ww2dbase [Preparations for Invasion of Japan | HM]
  • USS Hawkbill attacked a Japanese convoy just off the coast of Kuala Dungun, British Malaya; she only narrowly escaped the subsequent depth charge attack by the convoy escorts. 9 torpedoes were expended. ww2dbase [Hawkbill | Kuala Dungun, Terengganu | CPC, HM]
  • Kamikaze counter attacked submarine USS Hawkbill, which had been attempting to attack vessels being escorted by Kamikaze, off Malaya. USS Hawkbill sustained heavy damage, but was able to escape. ww2dbase [Kamikaze | CPC]
Mariana Islands
  • USS Spot arrived at Saipan, Mariana Islands, ending her third war patrol. ww2dbase [Spot | Saipan | CPC]
Pacific Ocean
  • USS Cero was attacked by Japanese aircraft and suffered extensive damage; she set sail for Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii for repairs. ww2dbase [Cero | CPC]
  • Escort carrier USS Bogue crossed the 180th meridian from west to east. ww2dbase [Line Crossing Ceremony | Bogue | DS]
Taiwan US Pacific Islands
  • USS Wasp launched Carrier Air Group Eighty Six aircraft against Wake Island. ww2dbase [Wasp (Essex-class) | Wake | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 18 Jul 1945
Harry Truman diary entry, 18 Jul 1945, page 2 of 2Harry Truman diary entry, 18 Jul 1945, page 1 of 2Joseph Stalin, Harry Truman, Andrei Gromyko, James Byrnes, Vyacheslav Molotov, Harry Vaughn, Charles Bohlen, James Vardaman, and Charles Griffith Ross (partially obscured) at the Potsdam Conference, Germany, 18 Jul 1945Harry Vaughan, Joseph Stalin, Harry Truman, Andrei Gromyko, Charles Ross, James Byrnes, and Vyacheslav Molotov at Stalin
See all photos dated 18 Jul 1945

18 Jul 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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