June 25th, 1943 (FRIDAY)
ÉIRE: Dublin: The efforts of Ireland's leader, Eamon de Valera, to keep his country out of a world war have won scant applause at home. In the latest general election he has failed to obtain an overall majority, although his Fianna Fail party, with 67 seats, is still the largest in the Dail, the Irish parliament. It is four fewer than other parties grouped together and ten below the total he had in 1938. It is uncertain whether he will be ready to serve as a "lame duck" prime minister, saddled with responsibility without power or dependent on a coalition.
UNITED KINGDOM: Bamber Bridge, Lancashire: Black American troops ran rioting through the streets of this small Lancashire town last night, firing back at American military police who had fired on them. One man was killed and four wounded, including a white American officer.
The trouble began in the Old Hob Inn, when American military police attempted to arrest a group of black GIs as it closed. A fight broke out as they walked back to the US Eighth Army Air Force camp. The MPs drew their guns and fired, hitting one man, and later returned in two trucks. The GIs armed themselves and there was a gun battle into the small hours. Local people ran for cover.
The USAAF's VIII Bomber Command in England flies Mission Number 67: 275 B-17s make scattered attacks on targets of opportunity in northwestern Germany when the primary targets at Bremen and Hamburg are obscured by clouds; 167 bomb targets and claim 62-11-40 Luftwaffe aircraft; 18 B-17s are lost. Of seven YB-40 Flying Fortress escort bombers dispatched only four are able to accompany formations to the target area. (Jack McKillop)
GERMANY: Wuppertal: After a 20-minute RAF bombing raid by 630 aircraft last night, targeted on the western district of Elberfeld, 870 of the city's 929 acres are in ruins. The raid follows RAF attacks two nights ago on Mulheim and Krefeld.
The USAAF joined in the battle on 22 June with a daylight raid on the synthetic rubber factory at Huls. An RAF spokesman says that the attacks will continue until the enemy "haven't enough guns to keep the United Nations out of Europe."
Ruhr: The Ruhr and Rhineland areas of western German have been declared war zones and Dr. Robert Ley, a senior German government official, has ordered the evacuation of over a million women, children, invalids and old people. The action follows the stepping-up of the Allied air offensive against Germany, with the RAF unloading about a thousand bombs a night on the Ruhr alone. The raids are said to have demoralized soldiers whose families are in the bombed areas.
This week's "shuttle" bombing of the Friedrichshafen radar factory in southern Germany has added a new dimension to Allied air power, soon to be further intensified by the US Eighth Army Air Force now based in Britain. But what the Goebbels-controlled newspapers refer to as "the Battle of the Ruhr" still pre-occupies the German authorities, who say that the Rhineland and the Ruhr are "in the front line". A German radio broadcast said that the damage caused by the RAF "simply goes beyond human imagination". In his diary, Goebbels has recorded his view that the British aircraft industry and the RAF have wrested air supremacy from the Luftwaffe.
At Chequers, Churchill has been watching films taken during RAF raids on Germany. Suddenly, he sat up and said to his guest, the Australian cabinet minister Richard Casey: "Are we beasts? Are we taking this too far?" Casey answered: "We didn't start it. And it was them or us."
POLAND: Czestochowa: The Jewish
ghetto is annihilated and its inhabitants sent to Auschwitz after an abortive
attempt at resistance.
U.S.S.R.: The Russians retreat from Kupyansk on the Oskol River east of Kharkov.
ITALY: There is a heavy Allied bombardment of Messina, Sicily. (Glenn Steinberg)
The Northwest African Strategic Air Force (NASAF) dispatches RAF Wellingtons to bomb docks and marshalling yard at Olbia, Sardinia during the night of 24/25 June. On the following day B-17s drop over 300 tons of bombs on Messina, Sicily bombing the marshalling yard, the western and northern part of town, warehouse area and part of commercial quay. (Jack McKillop)
General Ritchie is removed from command of the British 8th Army by Auchinleck. He
assumes control of the battle himself.
General Dwight David Eisenhower is appointed to command US Land Forces in Europe.
TERRITORY OF ALASKA: In the Aleutian Islands, the US Eleventh Air Force dispatches two photo and weather reconnaissance missions by two B-24s and six attack missions by 25 B-25's, 12 B-24's, and two P-38's hit Kiska Island. Targets include gun revetments at Gertrude Cove and AA batteries. (Jack McKillop)
LCdr Roland Fraser Harris RCNR
awarded DSC.(Dave Shirlaw)
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