May 19

1891 Birth: Oswald Boelcke: German flying ace:

Oswald Boelcke developed the most successful flying tactics used by German aces, making possible the later achievements of Manfred von Richthofen. Boelcke flew the first Fokker E.I, won the Pour le Mérite, commanded Jasta 2, mentored many younger German fliers, and was even decorated by the French for rescuing a child from drowning.
[For further details, Click here]

1897 Birth: Frank Luke: American fighter ace:

Ranking second among U.S. Army Air Service pilots to Captain Eddie Rickenbacker in number of aerial victories during World War I (Rickenbacker was credited with 26 aerial victories, while Luke's official score was 18). Frank Luke was the first airman to receive the Medal of Honor. Luke Air Force Base, a U.S. Air Force pilot training installation since World War II, is named in his honor. [For further details, Click here]

1898 Birth: Julius Evola:

Though never a member of the National Fascist Party itself, or advocate of the term to describe his stances: Evola regarded his position as that of a sympathetic right-wing intellectual, who saw potential in the movement and wished to guide or reform its errors through criticism, to a position inline with his own views. One of his successes was in regards to the racial laws; his advocation of a spiritual consideration of race won out in the debate in Italy, rather than a solely materialist reductionism concept popular in Germany. Since World War II many Radical Traditionalist, New Right, Conservative Revolutionary, Fascist and Third Positionist groups have taken inspiration from him. [For further details, Click here]

1913 Countdown to Infamy: California Governor Hiram Johnson signs the 1913 Alien Land Law, prohibiting "aliens ineligible for citizenship" from owning land or property. Aimed at Chinese, Indian, Japanese, and Korean immigrant farmers, the law permits them to hold only three year leases. (Niiya)

[See: Countdown to Infamy: Timeline to Pearl Harbor.]

1914 Birth: Max Perutz:

Perutz was exiled from Austria because of his Jewish heritage when Nazi Germany annexed that country prior to World War II. When the war did break out, he was rounded up along with other persons of German or Austrian background, and sent to Canada (on orders from Winston Churchill). During the war he worked on Habakkuk, a secret project to build an ice platform in mid-Atlantic, which could be used to refuel aeroplanes. To that end he investigated the recently invented mixture of ice and woodpulp known as pykrete. He carried out early experiments on pykrete in a secret location underneath Smithfield Meat Market in the City of London. Perutz had been engaged on this project because he had worked on the changes in the arrangement of the crystals in the different layers of a glacier before the War. After the War he returned briefly to glaciology. He demonstrated how glaciers flow. [For further details, Click here]

Fromelles Watercolor, 1915, by Hitler

1915 World War I: List Regiment: Gefreiter Adolf Hitler's 16 Reserve Infantry Regiment [List Regiment] occupy a position, at Fromelles, which is on a level field with water channels, willow trees and willow stalks, in the distance towards the enemy lines lie an insignificant wood with barbed wire entanglements. Under the direction of their defense-minded commander, Lieutenant General Gustav Scanzoni von Lichtenfels, the regiment works ceaselessly day and night to further fortify their position at Fromelles while fighting off repeated assaults by the enemy. [For further details, Click here.]

1916 World War I: Various:

Despatch Number 1 by Sir Douglas Haig, British Commander-in-Chief:

I have the honor to report the operations of the British Forces serving in France and Belgium since 19th December, 1915, on which date, in accordance with the orders of His Majesty's Government, I assumed the Chief Command. During this period, the only offensive effort made by the enemy on a great scale was directed against our French Allies near Verdun. The fighting in that area has been prolonged and severe. The results have been worthy of the high traditions of the French Army and of great service to the cause of the Allies. The efforts made by the enemy have cost him heavy losses both in men and in prestige, and he has made these sacrifices without gaining any advantage to counterbalance them. During this struggle my troops have been in readiness to co-operate as they might be needed. [For further details, Click here.]

List Regiment: Gefreiter Adolf Hitler endures trench warfare in Flanders (Artois) with 3 Company, 16 Reserve Infantry Regiment [List Regiment]. [For further details, Click here.]

Britain and France conclude Sykes-Picot agreement:

Representatives of Great Britain and France secretly reach an accord, known as the Sykes-Picot agreement, by which most of the Arab lands under the rule of the Ottoman Empire are to be divided into British and French spheres of influence with the conclusion of World War I. [For further details,  Click here]

1917 World War I: List Regiment: Gefreiter Adolf Hitler's 16th RIR [], after having lost 149 men in the Battle's of Arras and Vimy Ridge, is relieved and pulled off the front lines. [For further details, Click here.]

1918 World War I:List Regiment: Gefreiter Adolf Hitler's 16th RIR is behind the lines for a period of rest that will last until May 30. [For further details, Click here.]

1921 Emergency Quota Act: The Act, establishing quotas for immigrants by nationality, is passed by the US Congress.

1922 USSR: The Young Pioneer organization of the Soviet Union is established. [For further details,Click here]

1934 Bulgaria comes under authoritarian rule after General Kimon Gheorgiev and the nationalist organization Zveno seize power in a coup.

1935 Death: 'Lawrence of Arabia':

T.E. Lawrence, known to the world as Lawrence of Arabia, dies as a retired Royal Air Force mechanic living under an assumed name. The legendary war hero, author, and archaeological scholar succumbed to injuries suffered in a motorcycle accident six days before.
[For further details, Click here]

1936 Church and Reich: Hitler's Reich steps up its drive against the religious orders, instituting a number of trials for sexual perversion. The proceedings are given detailed and lurid coverage by the German press. Catholic monasteries are described as breeding places of filth and vice. (THP)

1937 Spain: Anarchists and radical Marxists stage an abortive revolution in Barcelona, which is opposed by the Socialists and Communists. The Communists, who, as the conduit for Soviet aid, had become increasingly influential on the Loyalist side, lead a drive to repress the ultra-leftist elements. Many are tortured and murdered.

1938 Czechoslovakia: Britain and France reject Hitler's demands.

1940 World War II: Various:

Romania: Horia Sima is arrested:

Horia Sima was a provincial high-school teacher, a devoted Legionnaire, regional chief of the Banat, and a friend of several conservative government officials. Even before Codreanu's death, Sima took Codreanu's anti-Semitism to a new level and his small underground movement began distributing flyers, beating up Jews, burning their shops and synagogues and eventually, killed a friend of Premier Armand Calinescu, the Minister of the Interior. Though Sima and Codreanu both attempted to stop the murder, it nevertheless took place, and produced harsh consequences. This event forced Sima into exile, led to Codreanu's death and resulted in the deaths of over one hundred legionaries.

Sima returned from exile in 1940 as the Commander of the Legionary movement when the government began to free the remaining legionaries. He became a supporter of King Carol and encouraged his followers to support him as well. Sima, along with two of his followers, entered the government under King Carol for a short time. When Ion Antonescu rose to power, Horia Sima became the Vice-Premier and the Iron Guard held the majority of the power. Sima wanted Romania to be a totalitarian Legionary state immediately, and called for the abolition of all other political parties. Antonescu disagreed and, with Hitler's strong support, took it upon himself to eliminate the Iron Guard. Antonescu displaced Sima and removed several prominent Legionary prefects and chiefs of police.

Sima went into exile again, setting up a puppet government in Vienna, and moving to Alt-Aussee in 1945. After the war, Sima took on a new identity as Iosef Weber and went into hiding. Sima's rule was not what Codreanu would have envisioned. His movement was "made up of men of the second rank [and] was a looser, more heterogeneous collection, less dedicated, less disciplined, less well trained." The movement began to be accused of Bolshevism, the very thing they hated most and Sima was seen as a weak element that had undermined the authority of the Legion. The Legionary Movement, as first envisioned and created by Codreanu, ended with his death. Codreanu's father went so far as to establish a new Legionary movement in opposition to Sima's Iron Guard and frequently ridiculed Sima in public. In the end, Horia Sima was responsible for the Iron Guard's swift rise to power, as well as their ultimate demise. [For further details, Click here.]

Winston Churchill: First Broadcast to the British as Prime Minister:

I speak to you for the first time as Prime Minister in a solemn hour for the life of our country, of our empire, of our allies, and, above all, of the cause of Freedom. A tremendous battle is raging in France and Flanders. The Germans, by a remarkable combination of air bombing and heavily armoured tanks, have broken through the French defences north of the Maginot Line, and strong columns of their armoured vehicles are ravaging the open country, which for the first day or two was without defenders. They have penetrated deeply and spread alarm and confusion in their track. Behind them there are now appearing infantry in lorries, and behind them, again, the large masses are moving forward. The re-groupment of the French armies to make head against— and also to strike at—this intruding wedge has been proceeding for several days, largely assisted by the magnificent efforts of the Royal Air Force . . . . 

It would be foolish, however, to disguise the gravity of the hour. It would be still more foolish to lose heart and courage or to suppose that well-trained, well-equipped armies numbering three or four millions of men can be overcome in the space of a few weeks, or even months, by a scoop, or raid of mechanised vehicles, however formidable.

In the air—often at serious odds, often at odds hitherto thought overwhelming—we have been clawing down three or four to one of our enemies; and the relative balance of the British and German Air Forces is now considerably more favourable to us than at the beginning of the battle. In cutting down the German bombers, we are fighting our own battle as well as that of France. My confidence in our ability to fight it out to the finish with the German Air Force has been strengthened by the fierce encounters which have taken place and are taking place. At the same time, our heavy bombers are striking nightly at the tap-root of German mechanised power, and have already inflicted serious damage upon the oil refineries on which the Nazi effort to dominate the world directly depends.

We must expect that as soon as stability is reached on the Western Front, the bulk of that hideous apparatus of aggression which gashed Holland into ruin and slavery in a few days will be turned upon us. I am sure I speak for all when I say we are ready to face it; to endure it; and to retaliate against it—to any extent that the unwritten laws of war permit. There will be many men and many women in the Island who when the ordeal comes upon them, as come it will, will feel comfort, and even a pride, that they are sharing the perils of our lads at the Front—soldiers, sailors and airmen, God bless them—and are drawing away from them a part at least of the onslaught they have to bear. Is not this the appointed time for all to make the utmost exertions in their power? If the battle is to be won, we must provide our men with ever-increasing quantities of the weapons and ammunition they need. We must have, and have quickly, more aeroplanes, more tanks, more shells, more guns. there is imperious need for these vital munitions. They increase our strength against the powerfully armed enemy. They replace the wastage of the obstinate struggle; and the knowledge that wastage will speedily be replaced enables us to draw more readily upon our reserves and throw them in now that everything counts so much.

Our task is not only to win the battle—but to win the war. After this battle in France abates its force, there will come the battle for our Island—for all that Britain is, and all the Britain means. That will be the struggle. In that supreme emergency we shall not hesitate to take every step, even the most drastic, to call forth from our people the last ounce and the last inch of effort of which they are capable. The interests of property, the hours of labour, are nothing compared with the struggle of life and honour, for right and freedom, to which we have vowed ourselves . . . . 

Having received His Majesty's commission, I have formed an Administration of men and women of every Party and of almost every point of view. We have differed and quarrelled in the past; but now one bond unites us all—to wage war until victory is won, and never to surrender ourselves to servitude and shame, whatever the cost and the agony may be. This is one of the most awe-striking periods in the long history of France and Britain. It is also beyond doubt the most sublime. Side by side, unaided except by their kith and kin in the great Dominions and by the wide empires which rest beneath their shield—side by side, the British and French peoples have advanced to rescue not only Europe but mankind from the foulest and most soul-destroying tyranny which has ever darkened and stained the pages of history. Behind them—behind us—behind the Armies and Fleets of Britain and France—gather a group of shattered States and bludgeoned races: the Czechs, the Poles, the Norwegians, the Danes, the Dutch, the Belgians—upon all of whom the long night of barbarism will descend, unbroken even by a star of hope, unless we conquer, as conquer we must; as conquer we shall . . . . 

Today is Trinity Sunday. Centuries ago words were written to be a call and a spur to the faithful servants of Truth and Justice:

Arm yourselves, and be ye men of valour, and be in readiness for the conflict; for it is better for us to perish in battle than to look upon the outrage of our nation and our altar. As the Will of God is in Heaven, even so let it be. (Book of Maccabees).

1942 World War II: Various:

Barbarossa: Kharkov attacked by German forces:

On May 8th, 1942, the Germans launched a massive assault against the Crimean Front. Four days later the Russians launched an offensive in an effort to break out of the Barvenkovo Salient (south of Kharkov). Here a large army group was trapped on three sides. The Germans were planning to attack this salient from the south via an attack by the XVII Army and the 1st Panzer Army. In an effort to get out of the salient, the Russians launched their own offensive north towards Kharkov. The initial phase of this battle went well for the Russians but they failed to maintain their momentum.

By May 15th, the German VI Army had contained this offensive and two days after this, the Germans launched a major counter-offensive which cut off the Barvenkovo Salient from the Russian South-West Front.

By the end of May, the Russians attempt to re-take Kharkov had failed as had their attempt to get out of the salient. The Red Army lost many men and equipment in this campaign. Just days later the Germans launched its attack on Sebastopol. [For further details, Click here]

Lithuania: Police execute 1,200 Poles in homes, and on the street, in reprisal for assassination of three Wehrmacht officers by Soviet partisans.

1943 World War II: Various:

Overlord: Churchill and FDR plot D-Day:

British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt set a date for the cross-Channel landing that would become D-Day: May 1, 1944. That date will prove [somewhat] premature, as bad weather becomes a factor.

Addressing a joint session of Congress, Churchill warned that the real danger at present was the "dragging-out of the war at enormous expense" because of the risk that the Allies would become "tired or bored or split,"and play into the hands of Germany and Japan. He pushed for an early and massive attack on the "underbelly of the Axis." And so, to "speed" things up, the British prime minister and President Roosevelt set a date for a cross-Channel invasion of Normandy, in northern France, for May 1, 1944, regardless of the problems presented by the invasion of Italy, which was underway. It would be carried out by 29 divisions, including a Free French division, if possible.

[See: Why Was Churchill Against the D-Day Invasion?]

War against Japan: In an address to the US Congress, British Prime Minister Churchill pledges his country's full support.

1944 Natzweiler: Eight civilians are shot at the concentration camp in Alsace. Numerous women active in the French Resistance and many Russian and Polish prisoners will be shot in this camp. (THP)

[See: How Widespread Was Guilty Knowledge of the Holocaust?]

1948 Death: Philipp Bouhler—by suicide—Reich Business Manager of the NSDAP in 1925; Director of the "Office of the Fuehrer" in 1934. Bouhler headed Aktion T-4, which supervised the killing of millions of Germans in mental institutions; and later millions of Jews, Gypsies, and Slavs, in mobile operations and in the concentration camps. [For further details, Click here.]

1967 Soviets ratify treaty banning nuclear weapons from outer space: One of the first major treaties designed to limit the spread of nuclear weapons goes into effect as the Soviet Union ratifies an agreement banning nuclear weapons from outer space. The United States, Great Britain, and several dozen other nations had already signed and/or ratified the treaty. [For further details, Click here.]

1999 John Demjanjuk: The US Justice Department renews its campaign to revoke Ohio auto-worker John Demjanjuk's citizenship, alleging in the face of clearly contradictory evidence that he was a Nazi death camp guard known as "Ivan the Terrible." He was convicted for crimes against humanity and sentenced to death in Israel in 1988, but this verdict was later overturned by the Israeli Supreme Court in 1993 due to a finding of reasonable doubt based on evidence suggesting that this was a case of mistaken identity, that Demjanjuk was not "Ivan the Terrible" and had instead been a guard at other camps. However, he will be found Guilty at a subsequent trial in Germany on May 12, 2011, convicted as an accessory to the murder of 27,900 Jews and sentenced to five years in prison. He was later released pending appeal, and is now living in a German nursing home. [For further details, Click here.]

Edited by Levi Bookin (Copy editor)

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