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22 Jun 1941
  • Churchill offered whatever aid possible to the Soviet Union. ww2dbase [TH]
  • Jews from the Dorohoi district of Romania were branded as communists and spies and transported by cattle cars to concentration camps in Tirgu and Craiova. ww2dbase [Discovery of Concentration Camps and the Holocaust | CPC]
  • At about 0300 hours, Benito Mussolini was awaken as an urgent message was received from Adolf Hitler's office, informing Mussolini of the invasion of the Soviet Union; though annoyed by not having been notified earlier, he dutifully declared war on the Soviet Union. Romania would also make a declaration of war on the Soviet Union on this date. ww2dbase [Benito Mussolini | AC]
  • Werner Mölders shot down three Soviet bombers and one fighter; he was awarded Swords of his Knight's Cross, to be presented to him by Adolf Hitler on 3 Jul. ww2dbase [Werner Mölders | CPC]
  • German submarine U-141 sank Swedish ship Calabria 100 miles north of Ireland at 0329 hours; 3 were killed, 21 survived. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German submarine U-77 sank British weather ship Arakara 550 miles east of St. Johns, Newfoundland at 2236 hours; all 33 aboard were killed. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • After dark and into the next date, a British fleet of two cruiser and six destroyers attacked French destroyer Guepard off Syria; Guepard was able to flee under the cover of darkness. ww2dbase [Campaigns in the Middle East | CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • Leonardo da Vinci detected an illuminated Spanish passenger ship in the Atlantic Ocean at 0230 hours at the distance of 1,000 meters. ww2dbase [Leonardo da Vinci | CPC]
  • General Dmitry Pavlov ordered, belatedly as the German invasion had already begun, his troops to man the fortified regions in his sector in Byelorussia at 0300 hrs. ww2dbase [Dmitry Pavlov | CPC]
  • At about 0100 hours, the Red Army was ordered to assume defensive posture, but it was too late to improve defenses significantly as Germany tore up the non-aggression pact and launched Operation Barbarossa. At 0325 hours, Georgy Zhukov woke Joseph Stalin by phone to inform him of the news of the invasion; initially, Stalin refused to give Zhukov the permission to strike back at the Germans, believing it to be a German provocation. At 0630 hours, Stalin finally realized it was a full scale invasion and gave his authorization for the Red Army to fire back. At a strength of 3.5 million men, Operation Barbarossa was the largest military operation in history, overwhelming Soviet defenses which were further disadvantaged by poor communications. In support, German aircraft destroyed 2,000 aircraft, many on the ground, allowing the Germans to gain air superiority across the entire front. ww2dbase [Operation Barbarossa | TH, CPC]
  • Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov announced the German invasion to the Soviet people at 2300 hours. ww2dbase [Vyacheslav Molotov | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 22 Jun 1941
Soviet tanks moving westward to meet the German invasion, 22 Jun 1941German troops crossing the Soviet border during Operation Barbarossa, 22 Jun 1941

22 Jun 1941 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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Winston Churchill

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