Monday, November 1, 2010

Day 429 November 2, 1940

100 miles Northwest of Ireland, British destroyer HMS Antelope brings U-31 to the surface with depth charges (2 dead) and U-31 is scuttled by the crew. As HMS Antelope takes off 43 survivors, she collides with U-31 causing structural damage (under repair until December). U-31 was previously sunk by a Bristol Blenheim of on March 11, 1940 and refloated later in March. U-31 is, thus, the only German submarine to sink twice in WWII.

Turkey declares neutrality in the war between Greece and Italy but keeps 37 divisions on the Bulgarian border and warns Bulgaria not to attack Greece. Delaying tactics by retreating Greek screening forces in the Epirus region, between the Pindus Mountains and the Ionian Sea, have slowed the Italian advance. The Italians reach the main Greek defensive line on the Kalamas river between Elia & Kalamas and here they are stopped. In the Pindus Mountains, the Pindus detachment of Colonel Davakis continues to encircle the Italian Julia Division, but Davakis is badly wounded.

Departing from Suda Bay, Crete, for Alexandria, Egypt, British cruisers HMS Ajax and HMS Coventry are attacked by Italian bombers, which again score several near misses but do no damage. Destroyer HMS Intrepid (ironically returning from a minelyaing mission) hits a mine off Hartlepool, Durham, damaging both her engines (under repair until Christmas). Minesweeping trawler HMT Rinovia hits a mine and sinks 10 miles South of St. Austell, Cornwall (15 crew lost).

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