Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Day 262 May 19, 1940

At 6.31 AM, U-37 sinks Swedish MV Erik Frisell off Scotland. All 34 crew abandon ship and are picked up by the British armed trawler HMS Cobbers and landed at Stornoway. http://www.uboat.net/allies/merchants/ships/320.html

While Rommel waits at Cambrai to regroup his troops and repair his tanks, Guderian resumes his charge through St. Quentin to PĂ©ronne, only 50 miles from the French coast. The Panzers are beyond the French defensive line and advance rapidly, capturing supply dumps and disrupting Allied rearguard areas. They cut the supply lines of the British Expeditionary Force and French Armies trapped in Belgium, further disorganizing their resistance. BEF commander General Lord Gort ignores orders to attack South into the German flanks and instead considers a withdrawal to the Channel ports, including Dunkirk. Colonel De Gaulle’s French 4th Armoured Division attempts another failed attack on Guderian’s flank at Montcornet.

The RAF has lost over half the aircraft deployed to France & Belgium and the German advance now threatens its airfields. Squadrons begin returning to Britain. Future fighter operations over France will be carried out from bases in southern England.

No comments:

Post a Comment