May 25

This Day in History

World War II

May 25, 1944:

Operation Knight's Move is launched

On this day in 1944, Germany launches Operation Knight's Move, in an attempt to seize Yugoslav communist partisan leader Tito.

Using parachute drops and glider troops, German forces landed in the Yugoslavian village of Drvar, where Josep Broz Tito, leader of the anti-Axis guerilla movement, was believed to be. The village was decimated: Men, women, and children were all killed by German troops in search of Tito, who escaped.

Also on this day in 1944, a revolt breaks out at the extermination camp at Auschwitz.

As several hundred Hungarian Jews were being led to a gas chamber in Birkenau (a supplementary camp, part of the Auschwitz complex known as Auschwitz II), the prisoners ran into the woods, suspecting their fate. Searchlights flooded the surrounding area, enabling the SS, who controlled the camp, to shoot all those who fled. This was the second such revolt in three days.

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