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This Day in WWII 24 November 1939 - 1944


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LockheedAd2-Nov1942.jpgLockheed Ad - November 1942

 

1939: Germany warns all neutral shipping to stay clear of British and French coasts, or risk being sunk. This had already happened to a number of neutral ships, particularly at night when it was difficult to identify them. U-boat skippers were now given the go ahead to sink any ship not showing lights at night.

 

1939: In Czechoslovakia, the Gestapo execute 120 students who are accused of anti-Nazi plotting.

 

Sylva%20Koscina1.jpg *Sylva Koscina

 

1940: The Luftwaffe bomb Bristol.

 

1940: The first trainees from the Empire Air Training Scheme arrive in the UK.

 

Sylva%20Koscina2.jpg Sylva Koscina

 

1940: Treasury cancels Boxing Day Bank Holiday.

 

1940: Slovakian Prime Minister joins Tripartite Pact in Berlin.

 

Sylva%20Koscina3.jpg Sylva Koscina

 

1941: Two Luftwaffe officers, make the war's most audacious attempt to escape from a British POW camp. Lt. Heinz Schnabel and Oblt. Harry Wappler were prisoners in Camp No.15 near Penrith, Northumbria. Forging papers that identified them as Dutch officers serving in the RAF, they made their way to the RAF airfield at Kingstown near Carlisle and started the engine of a Miles Magister. Taking off, they soon realized they did not have the fuel to make it to Nazi-occupied Holland reluctantly they turned back, landing in a field about five miles north of Great Yarmouth. Recaptured, they were sent back to Camp No.15 again and sentenced to 28 days solitary confinement.

 

1941: The United States, while remaining neutral, expands the Lend-Lease program to include Charles de Gaulle's Free French troops.

 

NorthAmercianAviationAd-Nov1943.jpg North American Aviation Ad - November 1943

 

1941: Theresienstadt Ghetto is established near Prague, Czechoslovakia. The Nazis will use it as a model ghetto for propaganda purposes.

 

1941: Rommel gives orders for his tanks to cut off the British supply routes by thrusting towards the Egyptian frontier, or as it became known, the 'dash for the wire'. By the end of the day Rommel's tanks had reached the frontier and caused complete confusion in the rear of the Eighth Army.

 

1941: US Army commanders across the Pacific are warned of the possible imminence of war.

 

Sylva%20Koscina4.jpg Sylva Koscina

 

1942: Laval sets up Phalange Africaine, to fight allies in Africa.

 

1943: Berlin reported as a 'sea of flames' this morning with casualty estimates put at between 8-10,000 killed.

 

Sylva%20Koscina5.jpg Sylva Koscina

 

1944: The allies cross the Saar near the Franco-German border. Troops of the French First Army capture Mühlhausen in Alsace, while the French 2nd Armored Division takes Strasbourg.

 

1944: USAAF B29s from Saipan Island in Pacific, bomb Tokyo for first time, but to little effect.

 

Sylva%20Koscina6.jpg Sylva Koscina

 

*Yugoslavian beauty Sylva Koscina was born in Zagreb on August 22, 1933. World War II proved to be catastrophic in her home country, first with the invasion by Germany and later with the Russian invasion, culminating in about a million deaths. Koscina and her family fled to Italy following the end of the war. After winning some beauty contests as a teenager, she attended the University of Naples and worked as a fashion model before becoming an actress. Her first film was the Italian comedy "Are We Men or Corporals?" (1955; with Toto). Koscina had acted in a string of comedies when she was cast in the peplum adventure "Hercules" (1958; with Steve Reeves).

 

With the international success of "Hercules", Koscina became a star. After returning for the sequel "Hercules Unchained" (1959; with Steve Reeves), she acted in such films as "Jessica" (1962; with Angie Dickinson and Maurice Chevalier), "Hot Enough for June" (1964; with Dirk Bogarde), "Three Bites of the Apple" (1967; with David McCallum and Tammy Grimes), and "Hornets' Nest" (1970; with Rock Hudson). Often appearing unclad in her later films, Koscina appeared nude in "He and She" (1969; with Laurence Harvey)and "The House of Exorcism" (1973; with Telly Savalas and Elke Sommer), among others.

Sylva Koscina's film career slowed in the mid 1970s, and thereafter she appeared in films only on a sporadic basis. Koscina posed nude for Italian Playboy in 1975 at the age of 42, but the pictorial did not help her flagging film career. Her last film role came in the 1994 release "Kim Novak Is on the Phone". Koscina passed away in Rome on December 26, 1994, from heart problems (some sources cite breast cancer as the cause of death) at the age of 61.

 

TRIVIA:

Measurements: 39-25-37 (Source: Celebrity Sleuth magazine)

Height: 5' 10 1/2" (1.79 m)

Spouse: Raimondo Castelli (1967 - 1971) (divorced)

 

GoodyearAircraftAd-Nov1944.jpgGoodyear Aircraft Ad - November 1944

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