Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Day 549 March 2, 1941

U-552 U-95 and U-147 attack convoy HX-109, 170 miles Northwest of Outer Hebrides, Scotland. Around midnight, U-552 sinks tanker SS Cadillac carrying 17,000 tons of aviation spirit from Aruba (37 killed, 4 crew and 1 passenger picked up by destroyer HMS Malcolm) and U-95 sinks SS Pacific carrying 9000 tons of steel and scrap metal from USA (34 crew lost, 1 survivor picked up by Icelandic trawler Dora). At 10.12 PM, U-147 sinks Norwegian SS Augvald (29 crew killed, Able seaman Rasmus Kolstø survives 11 days on a raft and is rescued by corvette HMS Pimpernel).

The day after Bulgaria joins the Tripartite Pact, German 12th Army crosses the River Danube from Romania into Bulgaria, moving troops forward to attack Greece.

Operation Canvas; Italian Somaliland/Ethiopia, East Africa. 11th African Division sets out from Mogadishu, Italian Somaliland, resupplied by Royal Navy and using fuel left behind by the Italians. They head 500 miles North for Jijiga, Eastern Ethiopia, to pursue retreating Italian forces. Allied efforts on the ground are aided by RAF aircraft flying across the Red Sea from Aden, which attack Italian airfields in Somaliland, Ethiopia and Eritrea.

At the Kufra oasis, Southeastern Libya, Free French Major Philippe Leclerc makes an oath (serment de Koufra), pledging not to lay down his weapons until the French flag flies over the cathedral at Strasbourg.

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