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21 Jul 1944
  • USS Finback arrived at Majuro, Marshall Islands, ending her ninth war patrol. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Rock detected a Japanese convoy in the Luzon Strait and attacked with four torpedoes. She recorded two detonations, but was not able to observe whether any of the ships sank. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Guitarro departed Frementle, Australia for her second war patrol. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • A military and damage control inspection party from USS Wyoming, headed by Rear Admiral D. B. Beary, boarded USS Astoria at Virginia, United States for an inspection. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Heinz Guderian was appointed Chief of the Army General Staff. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
  • Heinz Brandt died from wounds suffered during the 20 Jul 1944 assassination attempt on Adolf Hitler in Rastenburg, East Prussia, Germany. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • 8 B-17 bombers of US 8th Air Force dropped propaganda leaflets over France after sundown. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • British frigates HMS Curzon and HMS Ekins sank German submarine U-212 with depth charges south of Brighton, England, United Kingdom; all 49 aboard were killed. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • The keel of German submarine U-3009 was laid down. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • German submarine U-1110 was launched. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Canadian tug HMCS Glenlivit was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Canadian frigate HMCS Levis was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Canadian frigate HMCS Stone Town was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Destroyer escort USS Dufilho was commissioned into service. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Destroyer USS John W. Weeks was commissioned into service with Commander Robert A. Theobald. Jr. in command. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Brazilian corvette Camaquã was struck by a series of large waves and sank 27 miles off Recife, Brazil while escorting Allied convoy JT-18; 35 were killed. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • B-17 and B-24 bombers of US 15th Air Force based in Italy attacked Brüx in Czechoslovakia (Czech name "Most"), targeting the synthetic oil refinery. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Claus von Stauffenberg was executed in Berlin, Germany. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • 1,110 bombers of US 8th Air Force were launched from England, United Kingdom against Germany, hitting München (Munich), Saarbrücken (targeting rail marshalling yards), Oberpfeffenhofen, Walldrun (targeting rail marshalling yards), Regensburg, Stuttgart, Schweinfurt, and other locations; a total of 31 bombers and 8 escorting fighters were lost. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Field Marshal Erwin von Witzleben was arrested by the Gestapo. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • USS New Mexico shelled Japanese positions on Guam. ww2dbase [Main Article | Event | CPC]
  • USS Wasp's aircraft provided aerial cover for the invasion of Guam, Mariana Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • US 3rd Marine Division landed near Agana and US 1st Provisional Marine Brigade landed near Agat on Guam, Mariana Islands; the landing was supported by US Navy Task Force 53. US Navy and US Army aircraft attacked Tinian of Mariana Islands, Eniwetok of Marshall Islands, and Truk and Yap of Caroline Islands as indirect support. Troops of the US Army 77th Infantry Division arrived in the afternoon; their landing was difficult due to the lack of LVT vehicles. A mile-deep beachhead was established at both landing sites by sundown. The Japanese attempted a counterattack during the night, which was repulsed. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Barbers Point Naval Air Station: Recreation facilities - 6 handball courts and one basketball court for officers; and 2 handball courts, 2 basketball courts, and one athletic field for enlisted men, turned over to station. ww2dbase [Main Article | DS]
  • The French Expeditionary Corps and the US VI Corps began to be withdrawn from the front lines in Italy to prepare for the invasion of Southern France. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Pacific Ocean
  • USS Alabama escorted US carriers as carrier aircraft attacked Japanese positions on Guam, Mariana Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Philippines Russia
  • The Soviet Third Baltic Front captured Ostrov, Pskov Oblast, Russia. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • In Moscow, Russia, the Soviet Union announced the establishment of the Polish Committee of National Liberation to administer areas of liberated Poland, angering the Polish government-in-exile based in Britain. ww2dbase [CPC]
United Kingdom
  • No. 616 Squadron RAF, equipped with Meteor Mk I jet fighters, was transferred to RAF Manston in southern England, United Kingdom. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • 7 people were killed at 0654 hours when a V-1 flying bomb struck Blenheim Close, Penge, south-east London, England, United Kingdom; over 150 houses were badly damaged. Injured staff at the ice cream factory in Lambeth meant that the factory was unable to supply ice to hospitals. Another Mosquito aircraft was lost when 248 Squadron intercepted enemy aircraft whilst hunting V-1 flying bombs, three Dornier bombers were shot down but the aircraft of Flight Sergeant Walter Scott and his observer Flight Sergeant John Blackburn was hit by return fire and crashed into the sea. ww2dbase [Main Article | Event | HM]
United States
  • USS Baltimore depart San Diego, California, United States, with destroyer USS Fanning in escort and US President Franklin Roosevelt aboard, for Adak, Aleutian Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Air Group 80 flew off of USS Ticonderoga and landed in Norfolk, Virginia, United States. ww2dbase [Main Article | DS]
  • At Chicago, Illinois, United States, the Democratic National Convention nominated Senator Harry Truman to run as Franklin Roosevelt's vice presidential candidate in the upcoming election. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • US Army transport FS-185 was commissioned into service at New Orleans, Louisiana, United States under the command of US Coast Guard Lieutenant (jg) L. C. Rickert. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • US Army transport FS-186 was commissioned into service at New Orleans, Louisiana, United States under the command of US Coast Guard Lieutenant F. D. Obrian. ww2dbase [CPC]
Photo(s) dated 21 Jul 1944
Two US officers plant the first American flag on Guam eight minutes after US Marines and Army assault troops landed on the beaches, 21 Jul 1944Pennsylvania bombarding Guam with her 14-in and 5-in guns, 21 Jul 194440mm gun crew of an unidentified American cruiser watched as lighter vessels shelled a Japanese storage dump (note smoke in center), Asan Beachhead, Guam, Mariana Islands, 21 Jul 1944Battleship USS Tennessee bombarding Guam, Mariana Islands, 20 or 21 Jul 1944. Note the Measure 32, Design 1D paint scheme; only Tennessee was painted this way.
See all photos dated 21 Jul 1944

21 Jul 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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"You ask, what is our aim? I can answer in one word. It is victory. Victory at all costs. Victory in spite of all terrors. Victory, however long and hard the road may be, for without victory there is no survival."

Winston Churchill