World War II As It Happened
A MaritimeQuest Daily Event Special Presentation
Thursday July 4, 1940
Day 308

July 4, 1940: Front page of the Manchester Evening News, Manchester, England.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)
 
Note the headline: "Royal Navy Overpowers French Ships In Encounter Off Oran"
(These are the first reports of the Battle of Mers-el-Kebir.)
Also note the report at bottom center: "July 9 Is New Blitzkrieg Date"

(The report, by Otto Tolischus of the New York Times, claims that the Germans are going to launch their invasion of England from Norway. While this reporter seems to have some credibility in general, this report was completely absurd. We now know that Germany never invaded England, but to consider that the Germans would first move tens of thousands of troops, ships and supplies to Norway to launch an invasion of England, one wonders what Mr. Tolischus was thinking when he wrote this piece.

This report is as absurd as the reports last March of a planned attack against the U.S. capitol on Mar. 4th. The left-wing media repeated the lies from the Biden administration, Nancy Pelosi and the so-called intelligence agencies that right-wing militias and of course the omnipresent, white supremacists, were planning this attack. For weeks we were told this was why the National Guard had to be kept in Washington to "protect" the capitol. Another absurd lie from the left. I never heard one single so-called journalist ask, where are these thousands of people staging their attack from? Where are they assembled? Where is their equipment? They media never asked, because they knew it was a lie from the start, and to ask such questions would undermine the lie.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Daily Mail, Hull, England.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)
 
Note the report in column 3: "German U-Boat Claim"
(In the report the Germans claim to have torpedoed the British aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious. The Germans even identify the submarines commander as Endrasz. His name is spelt differently in other papers. His name was actually Engelbert Endrass, and he was the commanding officer of U-46. After checking the German documents I have, I can find no original source for this claim, the Kriegsmarine High Command itself said the claim was "questionable." I don't have the war diary for U-46, so I can't confirm that Endrass made the claim himself, but wherever it came from, it was not true. As a side note, Endrass was an officer aboard U-47 when that submarine, under the command of Günther Prien, sank HMS Royal Oak.)
[More about HMS Illustrious here.]
[More about HMS Royal Oak here.]


July 4, 1940: Front page of the Nottingham Evening Post, Nottingham, England.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of the Press and Journal, Aberdeen, Scotland.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)
 
Note the report in column 5-6: "U-Boat Torpedoes Boatload Of Nazis And Italians"
(About 800 people were killed when U-47 under the command of Kapitänleutnant Günther Prien, torpedoed the ship. Many of the dead were his countrymen.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Examiner, Launceston, Tasmania, Australia.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)
 
Note the report at bottom right: "R.A.F. Penetrates Kiel Canal Defences - Rains Bombs On Battleship Scharnhorst"
(In official British papers from the time, it was their belief that Scharnhorst had been damaged, however it was a case of misidentification as Scharnhorst was not hit, it was actually Prinz Eugen that was hit. Prinz Eugen was still being fitted out and was not yet in commission. The damage was described as slight and the commissioning was delayed for a month. As an interesting side note, it was during this raid that the British used a one-ton bomb, which was the largest weapon delivered so far during the war. It was supposed to hit the ships, but a faulty release mechanism in the Hampden bomber caused the bomb to be dropped in a non-military area.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Sydney Sun, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Telegraph, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Lethbridge Herald, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Winnipeg Tribune, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of Haarlem's Dagblad, Haarlem, Netherlands.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of the Nevada State Journal, Reno, Nevada.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)
 
Note the patriotic tone of the front page. It is unlikely that you will see this in our papers today in 2021.
(It turns out, I was right. In the New York Times for July 3 there was an article entitled "A Fourth of July Symbol of Unity That May No Longer Unite." In addition to that, PBS, the partially taxpayer funded national broadcasting company, had decided to have Vanessa Williams, the first Black Miss America, sing the Black National Anthem at their annual "A Capitol Fourth" broadcast. Whether they will also have someone perform the proper National Anthem, The Star-Spangled Banner, or not I don't know, but I can assure you I will not be watching this broadcast. A big thanks to the America hating, left-wing media for proving me to be correct. To be fair, it was an easy call, no surprise at all.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Evening Star, Washington, D.C.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of the Syracuse Herald-Journal, Syracuse, New York.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Port Arthur News, Port Arthur, Texas.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Tacoma Times, Tacoma, Washington.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of The Bakersfield Californian, Bakersfield, California.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)


July 4, 1940: Front page of the Hamburger Neueste Zeitung, Altona, Hamburg, Germany.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)
 
1. Seeschlacht vor Oran.
(Naval battle off Oran.)
2. Britischer Ueberfall auf die französische Flotte.
(British raid on the French fleet.)
3. Mehrere Einheiten vernichtet - Rest entkommen.
(Several units destroyed - the rest escaped.)
Note the report at bottom right: "Wehrmachtsbericht: Torpedo auf dem neuesten britischen Flugzeugträger"
(Wehrmacht report: Newest British aircraft carrier torpedoed.)
[This is the German report of the attack on HMS Illustrious.]


July 4, 1940: Front page of the Völkischer Beobachter, the official newspaper of the NSDAP.
(Click on the image for a readable version.)
1. Die Geheimakten des französischen Generalstabs.
(The secret files of the French General staff.)
2. Der Kriegsplan: Über Schweden und den Kaukasus nach Berlin.
(The war plan: Through Sweden and the Caucasus to Berlin.)



   
Page published July 4, 2021