18 Oct 1939
  • Germany and Soviet Union conducted a prisoner exchange. ww2dbase [TH]
  • The heads of state of Finland, Norway, and Sweden met to discuss the tension between Finland and the Soviet Union. Meanwhile, Germany sent a message to Sweden noting that Germany would remain neutral should war break out between Finland and the Soviet Union, advising Sweden to do the same. ww2dbase [The Winter War | CPC]
  • Dutch liner Simon Bolivar struck a German magnetic mine in the English Channel 10 miles east of Harwich, England, United Kingdom at 1030 hours; the mine was laid in this shipping lane without warning on the previous day; 86 were killed. The Netherlands made an official protest to Germany regarding this violation in international shipping law. ww2dbase [Start of the Battle of the Atlantic | CPC]
  • British armed merchant cruiser HMS California stopped and captured German merchant ship Borkum in the Denmark Strait. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Representatives from Britain, Japan, and the United States reached an agreement regarding to the presence of troops of all three powers in and near the Gulangyu island international zone near Xiamen, China since May 1939; all three pledged to withdraw troops from the international zone and to suppress anti-Japanese activities in the international zone. ww2dbase [Xiamen, Fujian | CPC]
  • Adolf Hitler ordered the German military to plan for the invasion of the Soviet Union, using Poland as a staging point. ww2dbase [Operation Barbarossa | CPC]
  • Jews in Wloclawek, Poland were forced to wear the Star of David. On the same day, the first Jewish ghetto was established in Lublin, Poland. ww2dbase [Discovery of Concentration Camps and the Holocaust | CPC]
  • General Johannes Blaskowitz sent a message to Adolf Hitler, complaining of SS atrocities in Poland. ww2dbase [Johannes Blaskowitz | CPC]
United States
  • US President Franklin Roosevelt banned any American port from taking in any foreign combat submarines. ww2dbase [Franklin Roosevelt | CPC]

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
"Since peace is now beyond hope, we can but fight to the end."

Chiang Kaishek, 31 Jul 1937

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