Tuesday, 14th September 1943

My Dear Mother & Father,

I am very sorry to hear of Uncle Benni's business being taken (censor's date stamp obscures 3 small words)....suggest competition; still we did say his bark was much worse than his bite. I expect Uncle Jerry will be forced to hand over his soon - that's the worst of this chain-store affair. *

Yesterday was Burt's birthday and we celebrated to the best of our ability; it really is surprising what a good quality cake one can make from ground-up biscuits, raisins and a little margarine, and what a difference molten chocolate when spread as icing over the top!  The appropriate refreshment was however conspicuous by it's absence.  As Jim says, we will celebrate his next birthday altogether in the good old fashioned way.

I have had no letters from you for about 3 weeks but I am fully convinced that everything is OK. Betty Evans dropped me a line which I am answering today.  Jim and I are in excellent health and spirits and hope to be with you in time for your (mum) next birthday.  Hoping that both you and Dorothy are in the best of health.


* Benni, is a referral to Benito Mussolini and possibly to this from Wikipedia

On 24 July 1943, soon after the start of the Allied Invasion of Italy, through the Ordine de giorno Grandi Mussolini was defeated in the vote of the Grand Council of Fascism, and the day after the King had him arrested.  On 12 September 1943, Mussolini was rescued from prison in the daring Gran Sasso raid by German special forces.

Jerry refers to the Germans and one assumes that Arthur is hoping for the same outcome.

On this day:

On the Eastern Front... The Germans announce the evacuation of Bryansk although fighting there continues. In the Caucasus, there is heavy fighting over the town of Novorossiysk in the Kuban Peninsula.
In Italy... On the Salerno beachhead fighting continues. Allied air and naval support contribute to preventing a German breakthrough. To the south, the British 8th Army reaches Bari in the east and beyond Belvedere in the west.
In the Mediterranean... Free French contingents land on the island of Corsica, harassing the German garrison that is evacuating.
In the Solomon Islands... On Vella Lavella, American and New Zealand forces are advancing. Reinforcements are sent to the US battalion on Sagekarasa because of Japanese attacks.
In Occupied Greece... At Cephalonia, the Italian "Acqui" Division continues to resist German forces.


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