12 Aug 1941
  • Light carrier Hosho became the flagship of Carrier Division 3. ww2dbase [Main Article | Tabular Record of Movement | CPC]
  • The Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party ordered the security forces to deport the entire population of the Volga German Autonomous Republic to destinations in Central Asia and Siberia. ww2dbase [AC]
  • The US Army-US Marine Corps 1st Joint Training Force under Major General Holland M. Smith was redesignated the Atlantic Amphibious Force. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Before dawn, British bombers attacked railway yards at Hanover, Germany. After sundown, 78 British bombers, escorted by 485 fighters, conducted the heaviest daylight attack against Germany to date, targeting the powerplants near Köln (Fortuna Power Station in Knapsack and Goldenburg Power Station in Quadrath) and other targets in a wide area. The Germans were only able to scramble few fighters, but anti-aircraft fire was heavy. The Germans suffered four fighters shot down (plus five likely shot down) and heavy damage to both powerplants; the British suffered 12 British Blenheim bombers shot down and 10 British fighters shot down. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • HMS Picotee (Lieutenant R. A. Harrison) was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-568 in the North Atlantic. ww2dbase [AC]
  • Zhao Chengshou signed a secret armistice with the Japanese. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Crown Prince Yi Un was assigned to Jinzhou, Liaoning Province, China. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • French Marshal Philippe Pétain appointed Admiral François Darlan as Minister for War, the Navy, the Air and the Colonies. General Maxime Weygand was thus placed under Darlan's orders. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
Japan Russia
  • The Soviet Politburo granted thousands of Polish prisoners of war amnesty for the formation of a Polish unit under General Wladislaw Anders to fight against Germany. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Semyon Timoshenko drafted an order calling for the execution of deserters; it would be revised by Joseph Stalin and issued as Order No. 270 four days later. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • No. 489 (NZ) Squadron RAF was formed at RAF Leuchars, Fife, Scotland, United Kingdom from New Zealand personnel under the command of Wing Commander J. A. S. Brown. The squadron would see extensive service on anti-shipping strikes in the North Sea and protection of the North Cape convoys. ww2dbase [AC]
United States
  • The United States Congress passed a modification to the Selective Service Act, which extended the service period of draftees as requested by Franklin Roosevelt, by a single vote. ww2dbase [CPC]
Photo(s) dated 12 Aug 1941
British mechanics assembling Buffalo fighters, Singapore, circa 12 Aug 1941

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis

12 Aug 1941 Interactive Map

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Famous WW2 Quote
"With Germany arming at breakneck speed, England lost in a pacifist dream, France corrupt and torn by dissension, America remote and indifferent... do you not tremble for your children?"

Winston Churchill, 1935