War Chronology 1941

The War of 1941


3 The battle between Italy and Britain for the Bardia fortress in Libya.

4 On the Greek-Albanian front, the Greeks attacked the Italians in Volona, Albania.

5 President Roosevelt asked Congress to support the "Lend-Lease" program to help the Allies (Britain in the USSR).

11 Hitler instructed his forces to be ready to enter North Africa, to assist the Italian effort - a sign of the establishment of the "Afrika  Korps."

12 mass demonstrations of starving people in the Lodz ghetto, the establishment of a coordinating committee with the participation of Poalei Zion, the Bund and the Communists in that city.

15 British forces invaded Ethiopia.

Mass massacre of the Jews of Bucharest, Rumania.

19 British forces invaded Eritrea.

20 Roosevelt was elected president of the United States for the third time, and Hitler met with Mussolini and offered to help in Albania and Greece.

21 British and Australian forces occupied Tobruk in Libya. The "Iron Guard" revolution in Rumania - pogroms against the Jews of Rumania.

28 The Free French Army under the command of Charles de Gaulle took control of southern Libya.


6 The British captured Benghazi Libya taking thousands of Italians prisoners.

8 Japan attacked Singa.

11 German General Erwin Rommel arrived in Tripoli, Libya.

16 The Italians lost their foothold in Sudan.

26 The British occupy Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia in East Africa.


1 Bulgaria joined the Axis countries and entered the war.

In The Hague, 18 underground fighters were sentenced to death.

7 British forces attacked, Ethiopia. British reinforcements llanded in Greece.

11 The "Lend-Lease Agreement" was approved by the US Congress and thus enabled the sending of assistance to countries of importance for the United States.

25 Yugoslavia joined the Axis Powers

30 The Wehrmacht's "Afrika Korps" began to operate against the British in Libya.


Rommel captured Benghazi, North Africa. The British army and Ethiopian forces liberated Addis Ababa.

6 German, Hungarian, and Italian forces invaded Yugoslavia and Greece. The Italian army in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia surrendered.

7 The German army attacked the ports of Athens and Piraeus, sinking seven British merchant ships.

10 The United States army arrived in Greenland.

11 German bombers attacked Coventry, England.

12 The German siege of Tobruk began. Admiral Darlan, the French prime minister of the Vichy regime, met with Hitler.

13 Japan and the Soviet Union signed a neutral agreement. Germany occupied Belgrade.

17 Yugoslavia surrendered, some 300,000 Yugoslav officers and soldiers were taken prisoner. British forces entered  Iraq.

21 Greece surrendered to Germany.

23 The Greek government moved to Crete. The British Air Force flew the Greek King George II to Egypt.

24 The British Army began to evacuate Greece. Bulgaria conquered the Thrace region of Greece.

27 German forces occupy Athens.

28 12,000 British troops surrender in Greece.

29 1,500 land of Israel pioneer corps soldiers were captured in Kalamata, Greece.


2 An anti-British revolt in Iraq headed by Rashid Ali, with the encouragement of Nazi Germany.

5 Emperor Haile Selassie returned from Jerusalem to Ethiopia.

9 The German submarine U-110 is captured by the British Navy, and with it an Enigma encryption machine.

10 Rudolf Hess landed in Scotland and was captured . The British Parliament building was hit by bombs.

17 The Irgun commander David Raziel was sent on a British mission to Iraq.

18 Sailing of the "Yordei Hasira" force to Tripoli, Lebanon. The Italian army under the command of General Aosta surrendered to Britain.

20 Germany invaded Crete - Greece.

21 The first US ship – "Robin Moor" - was sunk.

24 The Greek government moved to Cairo. The German battleship Bismarck sank the British warship HMS Hood in the North Atlantic.

27 The Bismarck was sunk in the North Atlantic.

31 Britain quelled the rebellion in Iraq.


Allied forces retreated from Crete. 120 Yishuv volunteer

soldiers were taken captive in Skepas, Crete. The Farhud - a pogrom against the Jews of Baghdad, 179 Jews were murdered.

2 The Vichy government cancels French citizenship of North African Jews.

Operation "Exporter" begins with the invasion of British,, "Free French" and Australian forces to Syria and Lebanon, with the participation of Palmach fighters.

9 First attack of German planes on Haifa.

10 Free French forces capture the Litani River bridges.

12 German air attack on Haifa, 1 killed and 1 wounded. French air attack on Tel Aviv, 13 killed and 15 injured in "Invalids House" on Marmorek Street.

21 Australian forces occupied Damascus.

22 Germany invaded the Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa.

23 Hungary and Slovakia declared war on the Soviet Union. Vilna captured by the Germans.

24 The German forces captured Brest-Litovsk and Kovno. Lithuanian pogroms against the Jews. The extermination of all Jewish men in Gorazde Lithuania.

25 Italian planes attacked Acre and Haifa.  Massacre of the Jews of Iasi by the Rumanian army. The first issue of the French underground newspaper "Undzer Vort".

26 Finland declares war on the Soviet Union Fascists from Lithuania massacred some 2,300 Jews in Kovno.

28 German and Rumanian soldiers murdered about 11,000 Jews in Kishinev. The German occupation of the Baltic countries and the western part of Ukraine and Belorussia.

30 The occupation of Lvov-Ukraine by the Germans.


1 The occupation of Riga and Lippia by the Germans. The mass murder of Jews in Ponary Vilna Riots in Lvov Poland , with the participation of Ukrainian nationalists.

The occupation of Novogrudek and the murder of its Jews by the Germans. French planes bombed Haifa.

6 German aircraft attack on Haifa oil refineries.

7 The Nazis executed some 5,000 Jews in Kovno, Lithuania.

8 Ukrainian Jews murdered by the OUT organization.

10 In Jedwabne, Poland, 1,600 Jews were burned in a barn by the locals.

12 The United Kingdom and the USSR sign a mutual defense agreement and commit themselves to to refrain from signing a separate peace agreement with Germany. Moscow was bombed for the first time by the German Luftwaffe.

14 The signing of Vichy France's surrender in Syria and Lebanon.

18 SS soldiers drowned about 40 Jews in the Dvina River in Belorussia.

19 German planes attack the Haifa oil refineries.

21 The Rumanian army captured Bessarabia.

23 German and Rumanian forces occupy Moldova as part of Operation Barbarossa.

24 Massacre of the Jews of Grodz in Lithuania.

25 General de Gaulle, commander of the Free French Army, entered Damascus.

27 General de Gaulle entered Beirut, Lebanon.


The Germans captured some 410,000 Russian soldiers in Uman and Smolensk in the Soviet Union.

In the battle for the town of Ijica, the brothers Isidore and Joseph Baruch, organizers of the Serbian partisan brigade were killed.

7 551 Jews murdered in the Kishinev ghetto in Romania.

9 Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill met in Newfoundland to formulize the Atlantic Treaty.

11. 38 German planes were intercepted over England. Soviet bombers attacked Berlin but caused little damage.

12  French Marshal Henry Philippe Petain announced full cooperation with Nazi Germany.

14 The occupation of Smolensk by the Germans.

15 In an air battle over Britain, 75 German planes were shot down.

16  45 German aircraft were intercepted over England.

18  71 German planes were intercepted over England.

22 The German army reached Leningrad.

23 The German Luftwaffe began bombing London at night.

24 The Luftwaffe bombed London.25 Britain and the Soviet Union invaded Persia. The first British night bombing of Berlin. German forces occupied Novgorod.

31 William Friedman cryptanalyst succeeded in cracking the purple secret code used by the Japanese for diplomatic communication.


1 The extermination of thousands of Hungarian Jews who were deported to Kamenetz-Podolsk.

Germany conquered Estonia.

8 The German siege of Leningrad began.

15 The murder of 800 Jewish women in Skaudvile, Lithuania. The deportation of the Jews of Bessarabia to Transnistria.

19 The occupation of Kiev by the Germans, the extermination of the Jews of Zhitomir.

30 The murder of 33,771 Jews of Kiev - Ukraine in Babi Yar.


2 Operation "Typhoon" Attack of Moscow by the German army.

3 Oryol fell into the hands of the German army.

7 Massacre of 3700 Jews in Svenciounis, Lithuania.

German forces occupy Mariupol, Ukraine.

10 Georgi Zhukov takes command of the Western Front of the Red Army and of the defense of Moscow.

16 The occupation of Odessa by the Germans.

18 The German forces in Mariupol murdered about 9,000 Jews.

22 The murder of about 39,000 Jews in Odessa by Rumanian soldiers.

25 The murder of some 16,000 Jews in Odessa, Ukraine. Armed resistance in the Tatarsk and Strodows ghettos in the Smolensk region.

31 The American destroyer "Reuben James" was torpedoed by a German U-boat, 115 killed.


1 The second Free Resistance and Marksman company- the first Jewish resistance  group in France

2- German forces occupied Rostov.

6 The murder of some 15,000 Jews in Rovno-Ukraine.

7  British air attack on Berlin, Mannheim and Ruhr gebiet, Germany.

15 The German attack of Moscow reached 25 miles from the city center.

18 Operation "Crusader" - The British began an attack on Tobruk, Libya.

19 The Australian light cruiser HMAS "Sydney" was sunk in a battle with the German auxiliary cruiser Kormoranoff the coast of Australia, with a loss of all its crew of 645. The Kormoran was also sunk in this battle but some of its crew survived.

22 The British ship –"Devonshire" sunk by the German submarine "Atlantis".

27 The Germans arrived 27 kilometers from Moscow.


5 A Soviet counterattack against the German army on the Moscow front.

7 Japan attacked the US Navy base at Pearl Harbor.

8 The US declared war on Japan. The Chelmno extermination camp near Lodz started to function.

9 China declared war on the Axis powers.

11 The United States declared war on Italy and Germany, and the Japanese navy  attacked the United States. Guam was occupied by Japanese soldiers.

16 Japan invaded Borneo, Malaysia.

19 The Italian submarine "Scire" sank two British warships "Queen Elisabeth" and "Valiant", and damaged the destroyer "Jervis" and a Norwegian tanker "Sagona" in the port of Alexandria.

20 Japanese soldiers landed in Mindanao, the Philippines.

25 British forces occupy Benghazi, Libya.

30 Organization of the underground units of Zionist youth in France-Mouvement de Jeunesse Sioniste.

31 The organization of an armed underground in the Minsk ghetto, The first actions of an armed Jewish group to carry out resistance  operations in the area.