15 November 1943

15 November 1942 – World War II: The Battle of Guadalcanal ends in a decisive Allied victory.

The Battle of Guadalcanal was a pivotal campaign in the Pacific Theater of World War II, fought between the United States and its allies against the Empire of Japan. It took place from August 7, 1942, to February 9, 1943, on and around the island of Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands.


Strategic Importance: Guadalcanal was strategically located, and its capture would provide the Allies with a base to launch further offensives against Japanese-held territory in the Pacific.
Allied Objectives: The Allies aimed to seize control of the airfield on Guadalcanal (later known as Henderson Field) to both deny its use to the Japanese and establish it as a base for Allied aircraft.

Course of the Battle:

Initial Assault (August 7, 1942): U.S. Marines landed on Guadalcanal, Tulagi, and Florida Island, facing little initial opposition. The Marines quickly captured the airfield, which they renamed Henderson Field.
Japanese Counterattacks: The Japanese, recognizing the strategic importance of Guadalcanal, launched a series of counterattacks by air, sea, and land.
Naval Battles: The waters around Guadalcanal saw several naval engagements, including the Battle of Savo Island (August 9, 1942) and the Battle of Guadalcanal (November 12-15, 1942). These battles were characterized by fierce fighting and heavy losses on both sides.
Land Battles: The land campaign was marked by intense jungle warfare, with both sides suffering from harsh conditions, diseases, and supply challenges. The fighting on land continued for several months.


Allied Victory: The Allies, despite facing significant challenges, managed to hold onto Guadalcanal and Henderson Field.
Turning Point: The Battle of Guadalcanal is often considered a turning point in the Pacific War. It was the first significant land victory for the Allies against the Japanese, and it marked the beginning of a shift in momentum in favor of the Allies.


Strategic Shift: The Allies gained a critical foothold in the Solomon Islands, which facilitated subsequent offensives in the Pacific.
Casualties: Both sides suffered heavy casualties, both in terms of personnel and naval assets.

17 October 1943

The Burma Railway (Burma–Thailand Railway) is completed.

The Burma Railway, also known as the Burma–Thailand Railway or the Death Railway, is a historic railway that stretches between Thailand and Burma (now Myanmar). It is infamous for its construction during World War II under Japanese occupation and for the harsh conditions and high mortality rates among the forced laborers who built it.

Construction during World War II: The railway was built during World War II by the Imperial Japanese Army. The Japanese intended to create a supply route between Burma (occupied by Japan) and Thailand to support their military campaigns in Southeast Asia. Construction began in 1942.

Forced labor: The construction of the Burma Railway is notorious for the use of forced labor, which primarily consisted of Allied prisoners of war (POWs) and Asian civilian laborers. The Japanese captors subjected these laborers to grueling, inhumane conditions, including extreme heat, malnutrition, and brutal treatment.

High mortality rates: The construction of the railway was marked by extreme hardship and suffering. Laborers faced not only physical exhaustion and disease but also abuse from their captors. As a result, an estimated 12,000 Allied POWs and tens of thousands of Asian laborers lost their lives during its construction.

The Death Railway: The Burma Railway earned the nickname “Death Railway” due to the high death toll among the laborers. The harsh conditions, lack of medical care, and inadequate food supplies contributed to the mortality rates.

Bridge over the River Kwai: Perhaps the most famous part of the Burma Railway is the bridge over the River Kwai. This bridge was depicted in the 1957 novel “The Bridge over the River Kwai” by Pierre Boulle and the subsequent 1957 film adaptation. It is a symbol of the railway’s history and the suffering of those who built it.

Completion and later use: The Burma Railway was completed in 1943, but it saw limited use before the end of World War II. After the war, it fell into disuse, and some portions of the railway were abandoned.

Historical significance: The Burma Railway is a grim reminder of the brutality of war and the human cost of forced labor. Efforts have been made to preserve and commemorate the history of the railway, and there are museums and memorials dedicated to the memory of those who suffered and died during its construction.

10 July 1943

World War II: Operation Husky begins in Sicily

During World War II, Operation Husky was the codename for the Allied invasion of Sicily. It was a major campaign that took place from July 9 to August 17, 1943. The objective of Operation Husky was to secure the island of Sicily, which was under Axis control, and pave the way for the Allied invasion of mainland Italy.

The operation involved a combined force of British, American, and Canadian troops under the overall command of General Dwight D. Eisenhower. The invasion force included airborne units, naval assets, and ground forces. The Allies conducted extensive air and naval bombardments prior to the amphibious assault to weaken Axis defenses.

On July 9, 1943, the invasion began with British and Canadian forces landing on the southeastern coast of Sicily, while American forces landed on the southern coast. Despite initial resistance from the Axis forces, the Allies were able to establish a foothold and expand their beachheads.

Over the following weeks, the Allies advanced inland, engaging in intense fighting with German and Italian troops. The mountainous terrain of Sicily posed challenges for both sides. The Axis forces, facing overwhelming Allied numbers, eventually decided to evacuate the island to prevent the destruction of their armies.

By August 17, 1943, the Allies had successfully captured Sicily. Operation Husky marked an important turning point in the war, as it opened up the Mediterranean to Allied shipping and provided a base for further operations in Italy. The success of the invasion also had political repercussions, leading to the downfall of Italian Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini and the eventual surrender of Italy to the Allies.

18 February 1943

World War II: The Nazis arrest the members of the White Rose movement.

The White Rose movement was a non-violent, intellectual resistance group active in Nazi Germany during World War II. The group was composed mainly of students and professors from the University of Munich, including siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl.

The White Rose movement was founded in June 1942, and its members were deeply opposed to the Nazi regime and its policies, including the persecution and extermination of Jews, the war, and the dictatorship of Adolf Hitler. The group produced and distributed six pamphlets that criticized the Nazi regime and called for resistance against it.

The members of the White Rose were eventually discovered and arrested by the Gestapo. Hans and Sophie Scholl, along with fellow member Christoph Probst, were executed by beheading on February 22, 1943. Other members of the group were also arrested and executed.

Despite its relatively short existence, the White Rose movement has become a symbol of resistance against tyranny and an inspiration to many people around the world.