From D-Day to Berlin - a chronology

 

Today marks the 60th anniversary of the Allied D-Day landings in Europe leading to the end of World War Two on the continent 11 months later.

Here is a short chronology of the last year of the war from D-Day to Berlin and the destruction of the Nazi regime in Germany.

 1944:

June 6th -Allied invasion of Europe.

July 20th -Adolf Hitler escapes assassination attempt spearheaded by a group of army officers. He is lightly wounded by a bomb. Bloody purge of opponents follows.

August 25th -General Dietrich von Choltitz, German commander in Paris, surrenders to Lieutenant Henri Karcher of the French 2nd Armoured division, the first Allied unit to enter the city.

September 17-25th -Ill-fated Allied airborne assault on Arnhem in the Netherlands.

December 16th -The Battle of the Bulge. German troops counter-attack through the Ardennes forest to try to split Allied forces and re-capture the Belgian port of Antwerp.

1945:

January 16th -German advance in Ardennes beaten back, US troops press their advance.

January 17th -Soviet troops take Polish capital Warsaw.

January 27th -Red Army troops liberate Auschwitz concentration camp in southern Poland.

February 4-11th -Wartime conference at Yalta in the Crimea. Soviet leader Josef Stalin, US President Franklin Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill agree on postwar division of Germany.

 February 13th -Budapest falls to the Red Army after a bloody 50-day siege.

April 9th -Koenigsburg, stronghold of Germany's Baltic defences, falls to the Red Army after a 59-day siege. A quarter of the city's population dies.

April 25th -US and Soviet forces link up at German city of Torgau on the river Elbe.

March 7th -US 1st Army crosses Rhine river, the main geographical barrier on the way to the German heartland, at the railway bridge in Remagen.

April 30th -Hitler commits suicide in bunker in Berlin.

April 30th -Soviet soldiers raise Red Flag over shattered German Reichstag (parliament) building.

May 2nd -End of large-scale fighting in Berlin. Marshal Georgy Zhukov takes surrender after battle that cost 70,000 Soviet dead, 150,000 Germans.

May 4th -All German forces in northwest Europe surrender.

May 7th -German forces sign capitulation at General Dwight  Eisenhower's headquarters in Rheims in France.

May 8th -Capitulation proclaimed on Victory in Europe Day (VE Day).