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22 May 1940
  • In Northern France, Rommel held his ground at Arras as he mistakenly believed he was facing 5 division of Allied troops when he was only facing 2 divisions and 2 tank battalions. Guderian, however, advanced toward Calais, Dunkirk, and Boulogne. ww2dbase [Invasion of France and the Low Countries | TH]
  • The United Kingdom passed the Emergency Powers (Defence) Act, giving the government authority over persons and property for the duration of the war. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German submarine U-37 attacked British armed merchant vessel Dunster Grange with four torpedoes and then surfaced to attack with the deck gun off of Land's End in Southwestern England. All four torpedoes missed, and Dunster Grange was able to fight off the attack and arrive in Liverpool safely two days later. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Japanese bombers attacked Chongqing, China. ww2dbase [Bombing of Shanghai, Chongqing, and other Cities | Chongqing | CPC]
  • Two formations of Japanese G3M2 bombers, accompanied by three C5M reconnaissance aircraft (Navy version of Ki-15 aircraft), attacked Baishiyi Airfield in Chongqing, China. Four I-15bis and one I-16 fighters were caught by surprise and were destroyed on the ground; the Japanese had claimed 15 destroyed on the ground. ww2dbase [Baishiyi Airfield | Chongqing | CPC]
  • French Air Force withdrew Potez 630 heavy fighters from front line service. ww2dbase [Potez 630 | CPC]
  • General Gaston Billote died from injuried sustained during an automobile accident on the previous day. ww2dbase [AC]
  • Recalled from retirement, General Henry Karslake sailed to France with instructions from General Edmund Ironside to save priority equipment without alarming the French. His top priority was to evacuate anti-aircraft guns that would be urgently needed for the defence of British cites should France fall. ww2dbase [Invasion of France and the Low Countries | AC]
  • In France, Theodor Eicke's SS Division Totenkopf, a police unit raised to provide concentration camp guards, murdered ninety-two civilians in the town of Aubigny-en-Artois and another forty-five in the villages of Vand√©licourt and Berles-Monchel as they headed towards the canal line before Dunkerque. ww2dbase [Invasion of France and the Low Countries | Aubigny-en-Artois, Nord-Pas-de-Calais | AC]
  • German pilot Hauptmann Wolfgang Falck was ordered to establish Nachtjagdgeschwader 1 wing for the night fighter defence of Germany. ww2dbase [Wolfgang Falck | AC]
United Kingdom
  • Cryptologist in Bletchley Park, England broke the Luftwaffe Enigma code. ww2dbase [Enigma Code Broken | Bletchley Park | Milton Keynes, England | TH]
  • In London, England, United Kingdom, a Home Morale Emergency Committee was set up to advise the Ministry of Information on how to combat defeatism in Britain. Its chairman was the diplomat, author and wit, Mr. (later Sir) Harold Nicolson, a junior Minister for Information. Another member of the board was the Director of the National Gallery and future Television presenter, Kenneth (later Lord) Clark. ww2dbase [London, England | AC]

22 May 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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Famous WW2 Quote
"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. You win the war by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country!"

George Patton, 31 May 1944