Monday, May 9, 2011

Day 618 May 10, 1941

Rudolf Hess (close confidant of Hitler and Deputy Führer of the Nazi party) flies a Messerschmitt Bf110 fighter from Augsburg, Southern Germany, to Scotland in an independent, unauthorized attempt to contact the Duke of Hamilton, Douglas Douglas-Hamilton. Hess believes Hamilton will introduce him to King George VI with whom he can broker peace directly, bypassing Hitler and Churchill. Instead he runs out of fuel 12 miles short of the Duke’s estate, parachutes out of the Bf110 breaking his ankle on landing and is captured by a Scottish farmer with a pitchfork, then sent to the Tower of London as a POW. He never sees freedom again. Convicted at Nuremburg in 1946, he will be held in Spandau Prison, West Berlin, until his death in 1987.

Ethiopia. Indian troops advance out of Falagi Pass and capture Mount Gumsa, 11,400 feet above sea-level, to the East of the Italian stronghold at Amba Alagi. Gumsa and other hills were occupied by Italian troops who have withdrawn overnight back to prepared defenses in the main fortifications.

U-556 continues the attack on convoy OB-318 between Greenland and Iceland, sinking British SS Empire Caribou (32 crew , and 2 gunners lost, 11 survivors picked up by destroyer HMS Malcolm), Belgian SS Gand (1 killed, 39 crew and 4 gunners rescued) and damaging British SS Aelybryn (1 killed, towed to Reykjavik, Iceland).

At 5 PM, British destroyers HMS Kelly, Kipling, Jackal, Kashmir & Kelvin from Malta bombard Benghazi. A counterattacked by German dive bombers causes no damage. Overnight, British gunboat HMS Ladybird shells the German-held coastal hamlet of Gazala, Libya, 30 miles West of Tobruk.

1 comment:

  1. The Darkest Hour

    The darkest moment is usually considered to have been 10 May 1941, when over 1,500 civilians died and 12,000 were rendered homeless in Luftwaffe bombing raids on London.