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World War II Database

30 Mar 1944
  • Adolf Hitler fired Paul von Kleist and Erich von Manstein, replacing them with Ferdinand Sch├Ârner and Walter Model. ww2dbase [Adolf Hitler | TH, CPC]
  • A 795-plane air raid (572 Lancaster, 214 Halifax, and 9 Mosquito) against N├╝rnberg, Germany; 82 aircraft were lost on the way to the attack, and a further 12 were lost on the return flight; nearly 700 lives were lost by the RAF. This was Bomber Command's heaviest single loss of the war. German casualties included 69 civilians and 59 foreign slave laborers. ww2dbase [Bombing of Hamburg, Dresden, and Other Cities | CPC]
  • On the fatal N├╝rnberg, Germany raid, one of the aircraft was flown by British Pilot Officer Cyril Barton of 578 Squadron. Badly shot up on the way to the target, his Halifax bomber managed to bomb the target and made its way back to England before his fuel ran out. Barton sucessfully crash-landed his aircraft on dead engines, thus saving his crew, but was so fatally wounded himself that he died on his way to hospital. Barton was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross. ww2dbase [AC]
  • US troops landed on Pityilu, Admiralty Islands. ww2dbase [New Guinea-Papua Campaign, Phase 3 | CPC]
  • Submarine Caiman was launched, sponsored by sponsored by Mrs. R. C. Bonjour. ww2dbase [Caiman | CPC]
  • USS Tunny performed lifeguard duties in the Palau Islands for airmen of the Fifth Fleet. Shortly after noon, she was mistaken for a Japanese submarine and was attacked, causing some damage. ww2dbase [Tunny | CPC]
  • USS Iowa joined Task Force 58. ww2dbase [Iowa | CPC]
  • Repair ship Akashi sustained numerous bomb and rocket hits from US carrier aircraft and sank in shallow water north of Urukthapel Island, Palau Islands. ww2dbase [Akashi | CPC]
  • USS Flying Fish attacked a Japanese transport off Okinawa, Japan; all 4 torpedoes fired missed. ww2dbase [Flying Fish | CPC]
  • Paul von Kleist was awarded Swords to his Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross medal. ww2dbase [Paul von Kleist | CPC]
  • U-23 began her fourteenth war patrol. ww2dbase [U-23 | CPC]
British Western Pacific Territories Burma
  • Japanese troops attempted to capture Nhpum Ga, Burma against the 2nd Battalion of US 5307th Composite Unit (Provisional), with infantry attacking in waves throughout the day and artillery pieces bombarding in-between. ww2dbase [Battle of Myitkyina | Nhpum Ga | CPC]
Caroline Islands
  • USS Yorktown (Essex-class) launched air strikes on enemy installations located in the Palau Islands, Caroline Islands. ww2dbase [Yorktown (Essex-class) | Palau | DS]
  • In Operation Desecrate the American Task Force 58 under the Commander of the Fifth Fleet (Admiral Raymond A. Spruance) began two days of intensive bombing of Japanese airfields, shipping, fleet servicing facilities, and other installations at Palau, Yap, Ulithi, and Woleai in the Caroline Islands. The raids sank the following vessels: Destroyer Wakatake; repair ship Akashi; fleet tankers Ose, Sata, Iro, Akebono Maru, and Amatsu Maru; submarine chaser Ch-6; auxiliary submarine chasers Cha-22, Cha-26, Cha-53, and Showa Maru No. 5; patrol boat No. 31; netlayer Nissho Maru No. 5; aircraft transport Goshu Maru; transports Gozan Maru, Nagisan Maru, Raizan Maru, Ryuko Maru, and Shinsei Maru No. 18; tankers Amatsu Maru and Asashio Maru; guardboats Ibaraki Maru and Seiei Maru No. 2; salvage vessel Urakami Maru; torpedo transport and repair ship Kamikaze Maru; army cargo ships Chuyo Maru, Kibi Maru, and Shosei Maru; army tanker Unyo Maru No. 2; army cargo ships Bichu Maru (outside Palau harbour) and Teisho Maru (in the channel west of Palau); many small harbour craft were also sunk. ww2dbase [HM]
France India Indian Ocean
  • Southeast of Diego Garcia in Indian Ocean, the 6,589-ton British merchant steamer City of Adelaide was torpedoed by Japanese submarine I-8 (Commander Tatsunosuke Ariizumi) while on voyage from Karachi, India (now Pakistan) to Fremantle, Australia in ballast. The City of Adelaide did not sink immediately, and the submarine opened fire with her deck gun. The crew abandoned the ship in six lifeboats. Fortunately for them, darkness set in and Commander Ariizumi, who had previously machine gunned lifeboats (SS Tjisalak and SS Jean Nicolet) did not find them. After three days, the liberty ship Carole Lombard en route from Fremantle to Colombo, Ceylon rescued the crew. ww2dbase [HM]
  • Light carrier Ryuho departed the Inland Sea in Japanese waters. ww2dbase [Ryuho | Inland Sea | CPC]
Mediterranean Sea
  • US destroyers Ericsson (DD-440) and Kearny (DD-432), along with submarine chasers PC-626, PC-556, and PC-558, and four British destroyers, HMS Laforey (G99), HMS Tumult (R11), HMS Hambledon (L37), and HMS Blencathra (L24) began a submarine hunt, 30 miles northeast of Palermo, Sicily, Italy. They manage to sink the German submarine U-223, but in the battle the submarine managed to torpedo HMS Laforey which sank about 60 miles northeast of Palermo. Among the 189 who lost their lives was the commanding officer of the destroyer and the 14th Flotilla, Captain H. T. Armstrong, DSO, DSC, RN. ww2dbase [HM]
Pacific Ocean
  • USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft attacked Japanese positions at Palau, Yap, Ulithi, and Woleai in the Caroline Islands. ww2dbase [Alabama | CPC]
  • USS Portland screened fleet carriers as their aircraft struck enemy installations located in the Palau Islands, Caroline Islands. ww2dbase [Palau Islands and Ulithi Islands Campaigns | Portland | DS]
  • About 350 miles north-north-west of Saipan, Mariana Islands, at 0233 hours the American submarine USS Stingray (SS-186; Lieutenant Commander Sam C. Loomis, Jr.) detected the Japanese convoy No. 4328. Loomis took the submarine past the escort vessels to gain attack position on two cargo ships and fires four torpedoes at the lead ship. The 3,943-ton turbine-steam transport Ikushima Maru was hit by a single torpedo and stopped dead in the water. At 0313 hours Stingray launched four more torpedoes that sank the Ikushima Maru with two hits. 11 of her crew and 15 soldiers were killed. The escorting minesweeper W-20 picked up the survivors. ww2dbase [Stingray | HM]
  • US submarine Picuda (SS-382) attacked a Japanese convoy and sank the 5,873-ton Japanese transport Atlantic Maru 90 miles south-southwest of Guam, hitting her with 2 of 5 torpedoes fired. ww2dbase [Picuda | HM]
  • The 3,359-ton Turkish cargo ship SS Krom struck a mine off Fethiye on the Turkish coast when en route from Iskenderun for Istanbul with a cargo of grain and general cargo. ww2dbase [HM]
United States
  • US Navy listed USS Grayback as missing and presumed lost with all hands. ww2dbase [Grayback | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 30 Mar 1944
Rundstedt and Rommel studying a map at the LXXXI Army Corps headquarters in Northern France, 30 Mar 1944Peleliu, Palau Islands under attack by US Navy carrier aircraft, 30 Mar 1944; note F6F Hellcat fighter in flightRepair ship Akashi burning as the result of US carrier aircraft attack, Palau Islands, 30 Mar 1944Launching of submarine Caiman, Electric Boat Company, Groton, Connecticut, United States, 30 Mar 1944
See all photos dated 30 Mar 1944

30 Mar 1944 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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Famous WW2 Quote
"All that silly talk about the advance of science and such leaves me cold. Give me peace and a retarded science."

Thomas Dodd, late 1945

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