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31st January 1943

WWII Timeline




Events On This Day

The British Admiralty announced the loss of the submarine HMS P222 when she failed to arrive at Algiers and was reported overdue on 21 December 1942. The Italians claimed to have sunk a submarine by depth charging from the Italian torpedo boat Fortunale on 12 December 1942, Southeast of Isola di Capri .

In Libya. The British Eighth Army occupied Zuara.

In the Mediterranean. Allied heavy bombers again raided Messina.

Russian Front. Field Marshal Friedrich Paulus and 15 generals of Wehrmacht Sixth Army surrendered at Stalingrad.

United States of America. Japanese air force aircraft bombed United States surface shipping in West Aleutians.

Mr. Winston Churchill visited Cyprus on way back from Turkey.

United States Army Forces in the Middle East (USAFIME). General Brereton, Demanding General Ninth Air Force, assumes command of United States Army Forces in the Middle East (USAFIME).

Twelfth Air Force. United States Army Air Force (USAAF) B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers hit harbour and shipping at Bizerte. B-26 Marauder medium bombers bomb Gabes airfield. Fighters escort bombers and attack ground targets and furnish cover for ground forces along battle line in Tunisia, mainly between Gafsa and Faid.

Ninth Air Force. IX Fighter Command begins functioning at its Headquarters station at Kabrit, Egypt, General Strickland is Commanding General. B-24 Liberator heavy bombers hit railroad ferry installations at Messina harbour. British 7th Armoured Division finishes clearing Zuwarah.

Fifth Air Force. United States Army Air Force (USAAF) A-20 Havoc light bombers continue to pound positions between Mubo and Komiatum. B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers pound airfields, shipping, and town area at Rabaul. A single B-24 Liberator heavy bombers bombs runway at Cape Gloucester, while a lone B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers bombs runway at Wewak. Other B-24 Liberator heavy bombers unsuccessfully attack isolated vessels over widespread areas in Banda Sea and Solomon Sea.

Thirteenth Air Force. United States Army Air Force (USAAF) P-39 fighters join Navy aircraft in attacks on shipping in Vella Gulf. Hits are claimed on a destroyer. B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers bomb ammunition dump and airfield at Vila. P-39 fighters, P-38 Lightning fighters, P-40 fighters, and other Allied fighters carry out sweeps over Vila and over Munda.

Eleventh Air Force. Weather and photo reconnaissance aircraft flies twice over Kiska. During first mission near Attu the aeroplane is jumped by 6 fighters which it eludes. 4 B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers, 2 B-24 Liberator heavy bombers, 6 B-25 Mitchell medium bombers, 4 P-38 Lightning fighters, and 4 P-40 fighters then attempt attack on Kiska. P-40 fighters turn back with mechanical troubles. The other aircraft find Kiska closed in and abort mission. 2 patrol missions, each by 1 B-25 Mitchell medium bombers and 4 P-38 Lightning fighters, fly over Amchitka. 2 enemy float-planes bomb Constantine Harbour without results.

M425 Minesweeper
Commissioned 31 January 1943

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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

For a complete list of sources
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