Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Day 142 January 20, 1940

At 4.15 AM, U-44 hits Greek steamer Ekatontarchos Dracoulis with one torpedo West of Portugal (6 lives lost). Korvettenkapitän Mathes holds fire as the survivors take to the lifeboats. http://www.uboat.net/allies/merchants/ships/190.html

At 8.26 PM, U-57 sinks Norwegian steamer SS Miranda with one torpedo about 30 miles off the Scottish coast (14 lives lost). 3 survivors are picked up the next day by RRS Discovery II (Antarctic exploration vessel) and taken to Kirkwall.

British tanker MV Caroni River hits a mine laid the day before by U-34 and sinks during sea trials in Falmouth Bay, England. All 43 crew are taken to shore.http://www.uboat.net/allies/merchants/ships/191.html

Speaking to Parliament, Churchill supports Finland, criticizes the ‘brutish’ Soviets and compares “Nazidom to Bolshevism”. The Finns (incorrectly) expect material aid from Britain. Hitler (correctly) guesses the Allies will act in Scandinavia. He postpones the invasion of France, Belgium and Holland until the Spring (to draw up a new plan) and turns his eyes on Norway.

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