Eighty years on. 27th May 1940


British and French units fell back towards the coast at Dunkirk, pressured by Panzer divisions now released from Hitler’s stop order and bombed by Luftwaffe at Poperinge.  Four British divisions under General Alan Brook held the Ypres-Comines canal.  The first 7,500 British troops were evacuated from Dunkirk harbour.  The Germans advanced within four miles, bringing Dunkirk within artillery range.

The British withdrawal left the Belgian right flank exposed and allowed Reichenau’s 6th Army to advance through the gap.  King Leopold III of the Belgians appealed to the Germans for peace terms. Hitler demanded unconditional surrender.

3rd SS Panzer Totenkopf Division troops under Hauptsturmführer Fritz Knöchlein shot 97 British prisoners of war from the Royal Norfolk Regimentin the French village of Le Paradis, leaving only two survivors.

150 miles West of Cape Finisterre, Spain, U-37 sank the British SS Sheaf Mead  and scuttled the Argentinian SS Uruguay.

The Allies took Narvik.  The Germans took Calais.

Former U.S. President Herbert Hoover made a radio speech titled “We Have No Good Reason to be Discouraged or Fearful,” arguing in favour of a strong national defence program. “We want a sign of ‘Keep Off the Grass’ with a fierce dog plainly in sight.” he said.

In Britain Field Marshal Sir John Greer Dill took over from Field Marshal William Edmund Ironside as Chief of the Imperial General Staff.

Also in Britain the butter ration was reduced to four ounces per person per week (about half a cup).

Game day 270.  Italy

Following Mussolini’s order to Invade France on 5th June, Italian troops began moving towards the French border.

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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