16 Dec 1940
  • 134 RAF bombers attacked Mannheim, Germany in retaliation for German raids on British cities; 34 civilians were killed, 81 were injured, and 1,266 homes destroyed by 100 tons of high explosive bombs and 14,000 incendiary bombs. This was the first Allied area bombing raid of the war against a populated target, as opposed to targets of military or industrial value. ww2dbase [Bombing of Hamburg, Dresden, and Other Cities | TH]
  • Korvettenkapitän Adalbert Schneider became the acting commanding officer of battleship Bismarck while Captain Lindemann was away on Christmas leave. ww2dbase [Bismarck | CPC]
  • British 4th Armoured Brigade captured Sidi Omar, Egypt, taking 900 Italian troops prisoner. ww2dbase [Operation Compass | CPC]
  • German submarine U-37 attacked wooden Spanish ship San Carlos off Cape Juby, Morocco at 1950 hours, stopping her with one torpedo and 21 shells from the deck gun, killing 1. German sailors scuttled the ship after the 28 survivors took to 2 lifeboats. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • British submarine HMS Truant sank Italian tanker Bonzo in the Ionian Sea 2 miles off the coast of Calabria, Italy. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Admiral Kiyoshi Hasegawa was named the governor-general of Taiwan. ww2dbase [CPC]
United States
  • US Marine Corps Reserve aviation units were disbanded, and their men were assigned to active duty in the regular US Marine Corps. On the same day, US Marine Corps established the 7th Defense Battalion at San Diego, California, United States. The infantry-artillery battalion was to be assigned to Tutuila, American Samoa. ww2dbase [San Diego, California | 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
"I have returned. By the grace of Almighty God, our forces stand again on Philippine soil."

General Douglas MacArthur at Leyte, 17 Oct 1944