Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Day 640 June 1, 1941

Evacuation of Crete. British cruiser HMS Phoebe, minelayer HMS Abdiel and destroyers HMS Jackal, Kimberley & Hotspur return safely to Alexandria, Egypt, carrying 3710 troop evacuated from Sphakia. Anti-aircraft cruisers HMS Calcutta and HMS Coventry are sent out from Alexandria to cover their return but HMS Calcutta is bombed and sunk at 9.45 AM (118 killed, 255 survivors picked up by HMS Coventry). 16,511 Allied troops have arrived at Alexandria from Crete, but about 5000 remain on the island. Australian Lieutenant Colonel Theo Walker, whose battalion has been left behind, formally surrenders to the Germans. Allied losses in the battle of Crete are 1736 killed, 1742 wounded, 11835 POWs. German casualties number 4,041 killed, 2,640 wounded, 17 POWs.

Iraq. Having waited several days at RAF Habbaniya, the Regent of Iraq, Amir Abdul Illah, returns to Baghdad to restore the monarchy and a pro-British government.

At 00.52 AM Southwest of the Cape Verde Islands, U-105 sinks SS Scottish Monarch (1 dead, 44 survivors). At 2.09 PM 140 miles off Freetown, Sierra Leone, U-107 sinks British MV Alfred Jones (14 dead, 62 survivors picked up by corvette HMS Marguerite).

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