Thursday, January 28, 2010

Day 151 January 29, 1940

At 5 AM, Colonel Siilasvuo's 9th division attacks Soviet 54th division, which has been moving slowly towards the road junction at Kuhmo. 54th division is stopped dead in its tracks, to be cut into mottis.

German planes attack vessels off the British coast. Unarmed lightship East Dudgeon is strafed and bombed. 8 crew take to the lifeboat which capsizes near shore drowning 7. Several other British and neutral ships are destroyed.

At 3.30 PM, Norwegian SS Eika carrying salt from Spain is sunk by a torpedo from U-51 (14 lives lost). Harald Støle (age 16) and Alfred Johansen are rescued by U-51. Støle turns 17 on the voyage to Wilhelmshaven, arriving 8 February. Both men will be home in Norway soon after.

USSR suggests negotiations to the Finns via a diplomatic note to Sweden. "Soviet Union has no objection in principle to a possible agreement with the Ryti (Finnish) government." Simultaneously, Red Army is preparing a massive assault on Finnish defenses.

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