Eighty years on. 20th August 1940


Clouds and rain again restricted the morning to reconnaissance flights over southern England, although the English Channel was clear and convoys were attacked.  190 German aircraft flew up the Thames Estuary and circled back without dropping any bombs.  They were intercepted and five were shot down. In the afternoon, Marston airfield was again bombed and strafed and one Spitfire was shot down.  The still-burning oil tanks at Llanreath near Pembroke Dock, South Wales, were bombed again.  In total, seven German aircraft and three RAF fighters are lost.  

Winston Churchill made a speech in the House of Commons in praise of the RAF fighter pilots. “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.”  He also announced leasing of bases in Newfoundland and the West Indies to USA.  He did not mention that this was in exchange for old US Navy destroyers to be loaned to Britain for convoy protection.

400 miles west of Ireland, the German submarine UA sank the Panamanian collier Tuira.  U-46 torpedoed the Greek steamer Leonidas M. Valmas 50 miles north-west of Ireland.  The ship did not sink due to its cargo of wood but 16 crew died in the fire.

The German submarine U-141 was commissioned.

350 miles east of New Plymouth, New Zealand, the German armed merchant cruiser Orion chased the British steamer Turakina, carrying 4,000 tons of lead, 1,500 tons of grain and 7,000 tons of wool, and eventually sank her.

The British submarine HMS Cachalot torpedoed and sank U-51 in the Bay of Biscay 100 miles west of St. Nazaire.

120 RAF bombers attacked targets in Germany and Luftwaffe airfields in occupied Western Europe.

Benito Mussolini announced a blockade of British Mediterranean ports, and Italian bombers attacked Gibraltar.

The “Hundred Regiments Offensive” began in the Second Sino-Japanese War.  This was a major campaign of the Communist Party of China’s National Revolutionary Army divisions commanded by Peng Dehuai against the Imperial Japanese Army in Central China.

Leon Trotsky, living in exile in Mexico City, was fatally stabbed with an ice axe by a Soviet agent.

Game day 355.  Neutral countries.

Following the unprovoked Italian attack, Greece would have mobilised, except that there were now insufficient resources.

The USA deployed 2 battleships, 2 destroyers , 2 cargo ships and 2 bomber units.

(No map today)

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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