Sept. 19, 1944
The San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors approved the new lease with the U.S. Navy for the county airport. The lease was slated to expire six months after "termination of the present hostilities." Commercial airlines would be able to use the airport as long as they did not interfere with military operations. Post-war access was decided to be through the tank farm rather than the road behind the airport.
A petition was being circulated containing 155 names opposed to a city ordinance licensing card tables in San Luis Obispo. Mayor Fred C. Kimball took a pragmatic approach, saying the ordinance will regulate what had already flourished for years unchallenged. Joseph Leary, commissioner of public health and safety, protested that all forms of gambling should be outlawed. There were applications for 11 tables in town, though four were held over for investigation. A majority of councilmen believed the new ordinance be given a fair trial.
The news from Europe included the first information on an airborne strike in Holland. The plan, later revealed to have the code name "Market Garden," was devised by Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery. It was a paratroop attack seizing key bridges, to be quickly followed with a ground attack to consolidate the territory and relieve the isolated airborne troops. The ultimate goal was to breach the Rhine River, opening avenues of attack to a potential supply port of Antwerp and into the German Rhur Valley, home of key Nazi war industries. The attack would bypass German fortifications by working around the northern end. The air drops of troops were in the Arnheim area of eastern Holland. It was assumed that the German Army was in disorganized retreat, but Hitler had recalled some army commanders after the chaos following the failed assassination attempt. The fight would be harder than expected even though early reports quoted "elated spokesmen" saying everything was going as planned.
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In the Pacific, the fight for Peleliu Island was termed "bloody" but seemed to be past the halfway point. It was anticipated that the next move would be by Gen. Douglas MacArthur against the Philippines.
Sept. 22, 1944
Manila was bombed by American carrier planes. It was the first time in two years Americans had ranged over Manila Bay.
The battle at Peleliu was being called the most savage of the Pacific war, and an example was the Japanese booby-trapping dead American Marines with grenades. Previously the same thing had happened with Japanese officers who had died.
Paratroopers at Arnhem were still cut off. German counterattacks were stalling the ground forces coming to their aid. A war correspondent, Alan Wood, was trapped with the British troops farthest away from the Allied front line. They had been fighting for five days and nights hoping to hold out until reinforcements arrived by ground.
The Soviet Red Army was said to have crossed the Vistula river and were engaged in street battles in Warsaw, Poland.
About 7,000 San Luis Obispians were getting ready to drive to service stations and order the 4 gallons of gasoline allowed per rationing coupon. The maximum allowed per month was 8 gallons.
President Franklin Roosevelt said that American news reporting was so good and fast that it rivaled the official dispatches he received from the Army and Navy.
The Post Office was processing thousands of Christmas packages. Some would travel 10,000 miles to destinations like Attu, Saipan, Naples and Cherbourg. Senders were warned that the boxes would be stacked deep in ships and trains, and that heavy corrugated boxes were required to survive the trip.