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12 Apr 1941
  • German troops captured Belgrade in the Serbia region of Yugoslavia as Hugarian troops also crossed the border into Yugoslavia, joining the invasion. On the Danube River in Yugoslavia, German Ju 87 Stuka dive bombers, sinking river monitor Drava (54 were killed, 13 survived) while forcing three others, Morava, Sava, and Vardar, to be scuttled. To the south in Greece, German SS troops overran British and Australian troops south of Vevi, forcing the Allies to fall back from the Aliakmon Line to the Mount Olympus Line to block the German troops at Vevi from advancing further. On the same day, British anti-aircraft cruiser HMS Coventry, destroyer HMS Decoy, destroyer HMS Encounter, and troopship Glenroy evacuated a battalion of troops, 1,000 tons of supplies, and 40 vehicles from the Greek island of Lesbos in the Aegean Sea near Salonika. ww2dbase [Balkans Campaign | TH]
  • German submarine U-124 sank British ship St. Helena 100 miles southwest of Freetown, Sierra Leone, British West Africa at 0509 hours; all 41 aboard survived and were rescued by destroyer HMS Wishart. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • British bombers conducted a raid on the fish oil factories in Hammerfest, Norway. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • US established air and naval bases in Greenland. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German troops captured Bardia, Libya. At Tobruk, the German probing attacks with tanks and armored cars were repulsed. Meanwhile, columns of Axis troops were dispatched to move toward the Libyan-Egyptian border to cut off the Allied forces in Libya. ww2dbase [Siege of Tobruk | CPC]
  • British submarine HMS Tetrarch sank Italian tanker Persiano 55 miles northeast of Tripoli, Libya. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German armed merchant cruiser Kormoran sank Greek ship Nicolaos D. L. 920 miles southwest of British West Africa, capturing the entire crew of 38. ww2dbase [Kormoran | CPC]
  • Adolf Hitler arrived at M√∂nichkirchen, Germany (occupied Austria) via his personal train Amerika. He would remain in his village to oversee the operations in the Balkan Peninsula. ww2dbase [Adolf Hitler | CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • German submarine U-108 (Kapit√§nleutnant Klaus Scholtz) fired two torpedoes at the 16,568-ton armed British merchant cruiser HMS Rajputana (F 35) west of Reykjarvik, Iceland at 2046 and 2048 hours. Both of them missed. ww2dbase [HM]
France Germany
  • Alexander L√∂hr was mentioned in the Wehrmachtbericht daily radio report. ww2dbase [Alexander L√∂hr | CPC]
Panama Canal Zone
  • The 8th airfield in the Panama Canal Zone was declared operational. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Gunsyn Tsydenova was elected chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Buryat-Mongol Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, Russia. ww2dbase [Gunsyn Tsydenova | Ulan-Ude, Buryat-Mongol | CPC]
  • Before dawn, all three surviving IK-3 fighters in the Yugoslav Air Force were burned by their own crews to prevent German seizure. ww2dbase [IK-3 | Balkans Campaign | AC]

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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