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17 Dec 1937
  • PB2Y Coronado flying boat took its first flight. ww2dbase [PB2Y Coronado | CPC]
  • At the Sancha Fangsheng Temple and the nearby orphanage in Nanjing, China, Japanese troops massacred 400 to 500 civilians. At a dock on the Yangtze River, Japanese troops massacred over 3,000 prisoners of war, civilian workers of the power plant, and other civilians. German businessman John Rabe, who was in the Chinese capital of Nanjing, noted the diary entry on this date "In one of the houses in the narrow street behind my garden wall, a woman was raped, and then wounded in the neck with a bayonet. I managed to get an ambulance so we can take her to Kulou Hospital.... You hear nothing but rape. If husbands or brothers intervene, they're shot. What you hear and see on all sides is the brutality and bestiality of the Japanese soldiers." ww2dbase [Battle of Nanjing and the Rape of Nanjing | Nanjing | CPC]
  • Iwane Matsui entered Nanjing, China with a military parade. ww2dbase [Iwane Matsui | Nanjing | CPC]
  • The keel of Ermland was laid down by F. Schichau in Danzig. ww2dbase [Ermland | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 17 Dec 1937
Japanese troops parading in Nanjing, China, 17 Dec 1937Japanese troops escorting 450 captured Nanjing policemen, China, 17 Dec 1937; most of them would be executed en masse later that day outside the West Gate of the city wallJapanese soldiers purchasing items from Chinese vendors, Nanjing, China, 17 Dec 1937; the Chinese claimed this to be a staged photo for propagandaJapanese General Iwane Matsui marching into Nanjing, China, 17 Dec 1937, photo 1 of 2
See all photos dated 17 Dec 1937

17 Dec 1937 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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