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13th May 1943

WWII Timeline




Events On This Day

The British Royal Air Force (RAF) bombers made very heavy night raids on Bochum in the Ruhr, Berlin and Czechoslovakia, 34 bombers missing.

North Africa. The last of the Afrika Corps forces in Tunisia surrendered.

In the Mediterranean. Pantelleria bombarded by naval force.

Russian Front. Soviet Air Force raided rly junction at Orel and Lozovaya.

Eighth Air Force. 119 United States Army Air Force (USAAF) heavy bombers attack Meaulte industrial areas and Saint-Omer and Longuenesse airfield. The major effort is directed at Avions Potez aircraft factory at Meaulte. Four additional B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers groups (94th, 95th, 96th, and 351st) become available for combat operations on 13-14 May 1943.

Northwest African Air Forces (NAAF). Northwest African Strategic Air Force (NASAF) Wellingtons bomb area of railroad station, marshalling yard and docks in Naples during 12-13 May 1943. The following day, B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers, B-25 Mitchell medium bombers and B-26 Marauder medium bombers from 7 bomb groups, escorted by fighters from 4 fighters groups, bomb Cagliari, hitting shipping, dock area, marshalling yard, oil dump, chemical plant, and city area. Tunisian campaign ends with surrender of Marshal Messe, commander of Axis forces in Africa.

Ninth Air Force. United States Army Air Force (USAAF) B-25 Mitchell medium bombers bomb Augusta. The British Royal Air Force (RAF) Liberators, under IX Bomber Command, attack Messina ferry terminal.

Fifth Air Force. United States Army Air Force (USAAF) B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers bomb airfields at Rabaul, Wewak, and Boram. B-25 Mitchell medium bombers blast airfield, town area, and targets at Gasmata while A-20 Havoc light bombers hit Cape Gloucester airfield and area. Single B-24 Liberator heavy bombers and B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers attack various shoreline and offshore targets, including landing strips, buildings, gun positions, barges, and vessels, on Northeast New Guinea coast, New Britain, and in Admiralty Islands.

Thirteenth Air Force. During 12-13 May 1943 2 B-24 Liberator heavy bombers on snooper missions bomb Kahili and Ballale airfields. They are followed shortly by 6 B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers which pound the same targets. During day, 34 P-38 Lightning fighters, P-39 fighters, and P-40 fighters, along with 62 Navy and Marine fighters and 6 Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) P-40 fighters, intercept 20 aeroplanes over Russell Island-Tulagi area. Allied pilots claim 16 aircraft shot down (1 by Army Air Force fighters). During early evening, 5 B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers again hit Kahili and Ballale airfields.

Eleventh Air Force. Bad weather keeps air-ground liaison B-24 Liberator heavy bombers from observing or hearing friendly ground forces on Attu and returns to base. Air ground support mission of 6 B-24 Liberator heavy bombers is diverted from Attu to Kiska. 2 of the bombers don't get the message, proceed to Attu, and bomb Chichagof Harbour and Holtz Bay. The other 4 bomb Main Camp area. 8 P-40 fighters dispatched to Kiska in 2 waves cannot see target and instead bomb Little Kiska installations.

Go To: 14th May
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Sources

The Second Great War.
Edited by Sir John Hamilton

The War Illustrated.
Edited by Sir John Hamilton

2194 Days Of War.
ISBN-10: 086136614X

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