Eighty years on. 14th May 1940


The Netherlands capitulated.  9th Panzer’s Corps commander General Rudolf Schmidt threatened to bomb Rotterdam unless the Dutch garrison surrendered.  Although the surrender was agreed, Luftwaffe aircraft did not get the order to abort and dropped 95 tons of bombs, killing almost 1,000 civilians and destroying 20,000 buildings.

The Dutch Commander-in-Chief General Winkelman instructed his forces to lay down their arms, although sporadic fighting continued for a few days.  In this short campaign the Dutch lost 2,300 dead and 7,000 wounded, in addition to 3,000 civilians killed.  The German lost 2,900 killed and missing, 7,000 wounded and 1,300 airborne troops, captured on the first day, imprisoned in Britain.

Rommel secured his narrow bridgehead at Dinant by personally leading 30 tanks to drive French and Belgian troops back three miles to the Belgian border village of Onhaye.  7th Panzer Division crossed the Meuse in strength.  Further South at Sedan, Guderian also had three Panzer Divisions across the river.

The RAF lost 70 aircraft and the Armée de l’Air lost 40 in attacks against the Meuse bridges.

In central Belgium, General Erich Hoepner sent 3rd and 4th Panzer Divisions in pursuit of Prioux’s Corps de Cavalerie. At Gembloux they came under fire from French artillery ad lost several tanks.

The Dutch Navy scuttled ships to prevent capture by German forces.  The Germans later salvaged the submarines O8, O11, O25, O26 and O27.

In Britain Lord Beaverbrook was made Minister of Aircraft Production and Ernest Bevin became Minister of Labour.  Winston Churchill wrote to President Roosevelt asking for aid with military materiel.

The Local Defence Volunteers were created in Britain.

And Col. H Jones VC, hero of the Falklands conflict in 1982, was born.

Game day 257. Great Britain, its empire and dominions

Three empty troopships returning from Narvik docked at Scapa Flow.  Three more, carrying six infantry battalions, set sail for Narvik for a planned joint landing with French forces.  Five submarines sailed north from the Danish coast to patrol the Skaggerak.

The battleship heading for Singapore neared Gibraltar. Crossing paths with the supply convoy moving from the Mediterranean.  The Australian troop convoy heading for Egypt continued across the Indian Ocean.  Three Merchantmen loaded up with 9 Industrial Points from Canada and set sail for England, unaware of the position of the German warships off the coast.

In France the British expeditionary Force of 6 infantry and six armoured battalions moved into Belgium.  Six RAF Fighter squadrons attacked the German Armoured Division crossing the Meuse.  Two squadrons were lost but three German battalions destroyed.  From Britain three Bomber squadrons attacked the German armour in the Southern Netherlands, losing one squadron for one armoured battalion wiped out.

From the north of England three fighter squadrons set out and sank the German troop transport in Bergen Harbour.

Credits:   Historical information:  http://www.worldwar2daybyday.blogspot.com, Wikipedia, Chronicle of the Second World War (JL International Publications, 1994).  Background image to game maps: Hasbro Ltd.

Published by

General Whiskers

Wargaming butterfly (mainly solo), unpainted model figure amasser, and Historical Re-enactor of the black powder era.

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