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April 8, 1945 – CBS Radio – World News Today – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
April 8, 1945 – Another busy day in war news. Allied armies continue to advance across Europe. Reports were coming in that the British 2nd Army now seven miles away from the German cities of Bremen and Hanover. Bremen, at news time was under British artillery fire and a mass evacuation of civilians was taking place. Allied Airborne troops were dropped over a wide area in north eastern Holland, ahead of the British and Canadian 1st Army which was meeting heavy resistance in the allied push to cut off Holland from Germany. There were no reports of a linkup between the 1st Army troops and the airborne troops, but the British Army did capture the important communications center at Zutphen on the Ijssel River.
Meanwhile, more than 1200 American heavy bombers attacked rail yards and airfields in Central Germany, and fierce fighting is going on in the streets of Vienna between German and Russian troops , with the Russians steadily closing in.
In the Pacific – more B-29 raids with an attack by substantial forces over the southern tip of Japan. Heavier fighting was predicted over the coming days on the island of Okinawa.
It was learned that from April 1st to 6th, a total of 189,611 German prisoners were taken and another 25,000 were killed or wounded. It was also determined that no army could afford to lose over 200,000 troops a week for very long. Many felt it was only a matter of days or even weeks before the German Army capitulated and ended the war.
Of note was the capture the day before of a German Salt mine, which yielded considerably more than salt. It was estimated the allies captured some 100 tons of gold bouillon, 3 billion German Marks, $2 million U.S., 100 million French Francs, 110 thousand Pound Sterling countless art pieces, statues, paintings, tapestries and other art treasure – all recovered from the mine. It was also announced that, as yet, no American soldiers had seen the Gold or the Dollars.
And that’s a small slice of what was happening in the world on April 8, 1945 as reported by Robert Trout and The World Today from CBS Radio.