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20 Apr 1940
  • Adolf Hitler authorized the creation of a joint Norwegian-Danish-German SS regiment. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • The British 148th Brigade arrived at Lillehammer, Norway by train at 0250 hours and began to march south toward the front lines held by Norwegian troops on both sides of Lake Mjøsa. At Namsos, Norway, German aircraft destroyed large quantities of British supplies and equipment piled near the docks; the British could do little to fight back as they were short on anti-aircraft weapons; in an attempt to remedy this, the 263 Squadron RAF dispatched 18 Gladiator biplanes to Scapa Flow, where they would be ferried to Norway by HMS Glorious. In the United Kingdom, the British War Cabinet canceled the plans for direct landings at Trondheim, Norway (Operation Hammer) in fear of heavy casualties; a failure in communications meant that the British 146th Brigade remained in precarious positions near Trondheim. ww2dbase [Invasion of Denmark and Norway | CPC]
  • Keith Park took command of the 11 Group of the Royal Air Force Fighter Command. ww2dbase [Keith Park | CPC]
  • Werner Mölders shot down a French P-36 fighter near Saarbrücken, Germany. ww2dbase [Werner Mölders | CPC]
Denmark
  • Danish Army began to demobilize. ww2dbase [TH]
Germany
  • German High Command issued a secret order to discharge servicemen with mixed Jewish heritage and servicemen who were married to Jewish women. ww2dbase [CPC]
Japan
  • Katori was commissioned into service and was attached to the Yokosuka Naval District as a special service vessel. Captain Hisashi Ichioka, previously the Chief Equipping Officer, was named her first commanding officer. ww2dbase [Katori | Yokosuka, Kanagawa | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 20 Apr 1940
German officer and troops with a 10.5 cm K 35(t) field gun at Hornbaek, Denmark, 1940Panzer I light tank in Norway, Apr 1940German naval photographer in Denmark, Apr 1940German Do 24 aircraft at Narvik, Norway, Apr 1940; note damaged buildings in background
See all photos dated 20 Apr 1940

20 Apr 1940 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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"With Germany arming at breakneck speed, England lost in a pacifist dream, France corrupt and torn by dissension, America remote and indifferent... do you not tremble for your children?"

Winston Churchill, 1935


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