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16 May 1944
  • USS Sea Cat was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [Sea Cat | CPC]
  • H Force arrived at the village of Namkwi, Burma, 4 miles north of the airstrip at Myitkyina. Colonel Hunter ordered his troops to intern the villagers in case any were informants for the Japanese. In the evening. Hunter sent the code phrase Strawberry Sundae to Joseph Stilwell to indicate the offensive would begin in 24 hours. After dark, he ordered Sergeant Clarence Branscomb to sneak onto the Japanese-held airfield to see how many defensive structures were manned and whether the airstrip had any unepaired bomb craters; Hunter gave Branscomb his opened bottle of Canadian Club whiskey as a gesture of appreciation. Branscomb recruited Tom Frye and Walter Clark, who finished the whiskey before moving out in the dark. The group would successfully complete the reconnaissance mission. ww2dbase [Battle of Myitkyina | Charles Hunter | CPC]
  • Light carrier Ryuho arrived at Tawi-Tawi, Mindanao, Philippine Islands. ww2dbase [Ryuho | CPC]
British Western Pacific Territories China
  • Tan Kun, flying a P-40N fighter, conducted a reconnaissance mission over Luoyang, Henan Province, China. He shot down one Ki-44 aircraft of Japanese 9th Sentai and another Ki-44 aircraft of a different unit between Luoyang and Longmen to the south. Suffering a punctured fuel tank, he crash landed successfully in friendly territory. He was given credit to the two victories by the Chinese Air Force but not by the US Army Air Forces. ww2dbase [Tan Kun | Luoyang, Henan | CPC]
  • Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel issued Adolf Hitler's directive for Operation Kirshkern ("Cherry Stone") to commence the bombardment of England, United Kingdom by long-range weapons. ww2dbase [Wilhelm Keitel | AC]
Hawaii India Italy
  • British fusilier Frank Jefferson used a PIAT anti-tank launcher to destroy a German Panzer IV tank along the Gustav Line in Italy, which led to his unit repulsing a German counterattack which was spearheaded by the tank. He would later be awarded the Victoria Cross for this action. ww2dbase [Battle of Anzio | PIAT | CPC]
  • US Army personnel Captain Young-Oak Kim and Private First Class Irving Akahoshi captured two German soldiers near Cisterna, Italy for intelligence. ww2dbase [Young-Oak Kim | Cisterna, Lazio | CPC]
  • A transport of Jews from Hungary arrived at Auschwitz Concentration Camp in occupied Poland. Adolf Eichmann, in charge of all transports to the camps, arrived to oversee and speed up the extermination process personally. ww2dbase [Adolf Eichmann | Auschwitz Concentration Camp | Oswiecim | CPC]
United States
  • Detached from the USS Ranger group while at sea and diverted to Norfolk, Virginia with engine difficulties, escort carrier USS Card arrived at Norfolk and began a period of maintenance and upkeep. ww2dbase [Card | Norfolk, Virginia | DS]
  • USS Ranger arrived at the Army Base, Staten Island, New York. ww2dbase [Ranger | New York | DS]
Photo(s) dated 16 May 1944
Aboard San Jacinto, Lieutenant Commander Albert B. Cahn gave signal to a VT-51 TBM-1C Avenger to take off for an exercise, 16 May 1944P-47 Thunderbolt aircraft of the 318th Fighter Group lined up for an inspection at Bellows Field, Oahu, US Territory of Hawaii, 15 May 1944. Photo 3 of 8.P-38J Lightning “Bambi” of the 338th Fighter Squadron assigned to Capt John L Odegard, probably at RAF Ridgewell, Essex, England, May 16 1944. Behind P-38’s nose wheel is B-17G Fortress “Chug a Lug IV” with the 535th Bomb Squadron.

16 May 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
"We no longer demand anything, we want war."

Joachim von Ribbentrop, German Foreign Minister, Aug 1939

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