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17 May 1944
  • USS Hoe damaged a Japanese freighter with 1 of 5 torpedoes fired. ww2dbase [Hoe | CPC]
  • USS Tunny received reports of a Japanese convoy from USS Sand Lance and intercepted the 3-ship and 3-destroyer convoy just after sunset in the Mariana Islands. She launched three torpedoes each against two cargo ships, sinking Nichiwa Maru. She endured a counterattack consisted of 81 depth charges, suffering no damage. ww2dbase [Tunny | CPC]
  • USS Astoria was commissioned into service with Captain George Dye in command. ww2dbase [Astoria (Cleveland-class) | CPC]
  • USS Hawkbill was commissioned into service with Lieutenant Commander F. Worth Scanland, Jr. in command. ww2dbase [Hawkbill | CPC]
  • The Japanese attack on the Blackpool site of Operation Thursday in Burma was repulsed. On the same day, William Slim handed operational control of the Chindits over to Joseph Stilwell. ww2dbase [Operation Thursday | CPC]
  • American, Chinese, and Kachin troops began the assault on Myitkyina, Burma. The attack began at 1000 hours, and by 1050 the airfield was captured. ww2dbase [Battle of Myitkyina | CPC]
Dutch East Indies
  • Japanese hospital ship Hikawa Maru departed Surabaya, Java. ww2dbase [Hikawa Maru | CPC]
  • British and American carrier aircraft struck oil refineries at the Wonokromo district of Surabaya, Java, Dutch East Indies and the nearby Braat Engineering Works. ww2dbase [Operation Cockpit and Operation Transom | CPC]
  • German troops evacuated Cassino, Italy. Meanwhile, the French penetration of the Gustav Line reached 25 miles. Nearby, Polish troops launched what was to become the final attack on Monte Cassino. ww2dbase [Battle of Monte Cassino | TH, CPC]
Photo(s) dated 17 May 1944
Map depicting the arrival of Allied H, K, and M forces at Myitkyina, Burma, 17-19 May 1944Soldiers of the US 6th Army on the beach of Wakde, northwestern New Guinea, 17 May 1944Surabaya under attack, Java, Dutch East Indies, 17 May 1944, photo 1 of 2Surabaya under attack, Java, Dutch East Indies, 17 May 1944, photo 2 of 2
See all photos dated 17 May 1944

17 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
"All right, they're on our left, they're on our right, they're in front of us, they're behind us... they can't get away this time."

Lt. Gen. Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller, at Guadalcanal