The U.S. Navy in World War II
session v-The Battle of the Atlantic
“The Boat” is a 1981 German epic war film
an adaptation of the 1973 German novel of
the same name by Lothar-Günther
Buchhei...
Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, DL,
FRS, RA (1874 – 1965) was a British politician who was the
Prim...
Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, DL,
FRS, RA (1874 – 1965) was a British politician who was the
Prim...
“From the Allied point of view,
the Battle of the Atlantic…
“…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle
was that much nearer victory. ...
“…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle
was that much nearer victory. ...
“…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle
was that much nearer victory. ...
“…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle
was that much nearer victory. ...
“…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle
was that much nearer victory. ...
There is a great irony about the U-boat war. Although it was Hitler’s only real chance to
bring Britain to her knees, neit...
“The Wizard War”-Churchill
as early as WW I the need for underwater
detection had prompted the development of what
we call...
“The Wizard War”-Churchill
as early as WW I the need for underwater
detection had prompted the development of what
we call...
“The Wizard War”-Churchill
as early as WW I the need for underwater detection
had prompted the development of what we call...
“The Wizard War”-Churchill
as early as WW I the need for underwater detection
had prompted the development of what we call...
“Because efficient convoy escorts could not be improvised, most of the escorts early in the war
were hurriedly adapted fro...
Enigma machine an Enigma machine was an electro-mechanical rotor
cipher machine used…for enciphering and deciphering
secre...
Enigma machine an Enigma machine was an electro-mechanical rotor cipher
machine used…for enciphering and deciphering secre...
major topics in this session
I. U-boat Operations Until the Fall of France
II. The Mid-Atlantic Offensive Based on French ...
Text
I. U-boat Operations Until the Fall of France
September 1939-June 1940
the first U-boat victim, SS Athenia, 3 Sept 1939
With the onset of war

both sides deployed mines

with little effect
“When hostilities began Commodore Karl Dönitz was obliged to operate with only a
handful of boats….Yet one of this handful...
“Because of wide fluctuations in escort availability, screening dispositions changed
frequently. Theoretically the best de...
“Early British doctrine called for a prompt “hold down” on an attacking U-boat. Such
tactics, though successful in limitin...
Torpedo failure—a widespread initial problem
G7a T1 Kriegsmarine torpedo
“In the ultimate success of the Norwegian invasion the U-boats played no part, being
frustrated by widespread torpedo fail...
“In the ultimate success of the Norwegian invasion the U-boats played no part, being
frustrated by widespread torpedo fail...
U-boat pens at Brest showing (little) damage after RAF raid which
leveled the surrounding buildings
Lorient
The pens at St. Nazaire were not affected by the British commando raid in March 1942,!
whose main objective were the Norma...
La Rochelle
Bordeaux
Brest
Lorient
St. Nazaire
La Rochelle
Bordeaux
U-boat
pens
U-96 heading out to sea from the massive pens
at La Rochelle, Das Boot
Text
II. The Mid-Atlantic Offensive Based on French Ports
July 1940-May 1941
U-96 heading out to sea from La Rochelle harb...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations
“In July 1940 U-boats began operating from French bases. The reduction i...
Sea Power, p. 563
First “Happy Time”
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations
“The toll of Allied shipping mounted ominously, exceeding 500,000 tons i...
the listing at the uboat.net
website continues to 1945
!
the dates give an indication
of the length of a wolfpack
operatio...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations
“Midway in July BdU concentrated his strength in the waters of Rockall B...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations
“Midway in July BdU concentrated his strength in the waters of Rockall B...
S.W. Roskill,The War at Sea;
The Period of Balance, v. ii
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations
“German submarine U-99 was a Type VIIB U-boat.… She was laid down on 31 ...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations
“German submarine U-99 was a Type VIIB U-boat.… She was laid down on 31 ...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations
“German submarine U-99 was a Type VIIB U-boat.… She was laid down on 31 ...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations
“German submarine U-99 was a Type VIIB U-boat.… She was laid down on 31 ...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations
“On his last patrol in March 1941, he sank 10 more ships, but these were...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations
“The loss of three of their outstanding aces [7 Mar 41-Prien, 14 Mar-Kre...
MOMP=
Mid-Ocean Meeting Point
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations
“On May 27, 1941, there sailed from Halifax Convoy HX-129, the first Nor...
Text
III. “All Aid to Britain Short of War”
27 May 41-17 Dec 41
FDR lays the foundation for American belligerence.
We will...
“From the earliest days of the war the United States had watched the events in Europe
apprehensively, and most Americans d...
the first peacetime draft in United States history.“Events however were moving faster
than legislation. Great Britain’s de...
Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations
“…the need for escorts was
desperate….Churchill as early
as May 1940 req...
year, the 50 destroyers had been delivered, as well as ten Lake-class Coast Guard cutters
well equipped for anti-submarine...
Fundamental to this doctrine was the basic concept that in event of war with Japan,
Britain and the U. S. would devote the...
on the segment from Argentia, Newfoundland to Iceland, where British escorts would
take over.
[flashback:9 Apr 1940- Weser...
on the segment from Argentia, Newfoundland to Iceland, where British escorts would
take over.
[flashback:9 Apr 1940- Weser...
U.S. Navy Vought SBU-1 dive bombers of scouting squadron VS-42 !
flying the Neutrality Patrol near Norfolk, Virginia, in 19...
garrison already there. Within two months, U. S. naval patrol squadrons were flying
convoy coverage from Reykjavik, while ...
MOMP=
Mid-Ocean Meeting Point
GAG=
Greenland Air Gap
protection for Allied and neutral shipping that joined American-escorted convoys….two
grim years lay ahead before such cov...
protection for Allied and neutral shipping that joined American-escorted convoys….two
grim years lay ahead before such cov...
Unlimited National Emergency and announced…that more vigorous steps would be
taken to keep the Germans from American water...
The Fletcher class was a class of destroyers built by the United States during World War II. The class was designed in 193...
DD
www.destroyerhistory.org
DE
Ibid.
“My” destroyer
USS Charles H. Roan, DD-853
destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more
rapidly than a destroyer and at lowe...
destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more
rapidly than a destroyer and at lowe...
destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more
rapidly than a destroyer and at lowe...
destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more
rapidly than a destroyer and at lowe...
First shots in the undeclared war—4 Sept 1941
In what became known as the "Greer incident," she became the first U.S. Navy ...
“President Roosevelt issued a statement declaring, ‘From now on, if German or Italian
vessels of war enter the waters, the...
The damaged USS
Kearny, DD 432
“President Roosevelt issued a statement declaring, ‘From now on, if German or Italian
vessels of war enter the waters, the...
“…destroyers were escorting HX-156 some 600 miles west of Iceland.”
“In spite of Allied air bases in Iceland, there still ...
“…destroyers were escorting HX-156 some 600 miles west of Iceland.”
“In spite of Allied air bases in Iceland, there still ...
prize, proved herself in her short career.”
“The Audacity accompanied Convoy HG-76 of 32 ships, whose escort of 12 corvett...
prize, proved herself in her short
career.”
“The Audacity accompanied
Convoy HG-76 of 32 ships, whose
escort of 12 corvett...
On December 21st, after Audacity’s airmen had destroyed four German Kondor aircraft,
….several U-boats finally succeeded i...
off this costly attack. Upon reviewing this nine-day operation, Dönitz recognized that the
aggressive British escort tacti...
Text
IV. The U-boat Offensive in American Waters
Dec 41-Dec 42
The tanker Dixie Arrow torpedoed off Cape Hatteras by U-71 ...
“During December 1941, Roosevelt devised the name ‘United Nations’ for the Allies of World
War II, and the Declaration by ...
“After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor…had brought the U.S. officially into the
war against the Axis powers, Churchill...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;…”
!
P...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the
...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the
...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the
...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the
...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the
...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the
...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the
...
New World and was confident of victory.
“….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the
...
!
!
Ibid.
Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive
in American Waters
William D. Leahy, Chief of Staff to the
President,• constitute...
!
!
Ibid.
Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive
in American Waters
Adm. Chester W. Nimitz
h a d r e l i e v e d A d m .
Husband E...
Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive
in American Waters
Cinc U.S. Fleet (Cominch), the two offices were vested in Adm. King….
“J...
Gulf

of

St. Lawrence
Cape

Hatteras
impending attack on shipping between Cape Hatteras and the Gulf of St. Lawrence. This
opening thrust, designated Operation...
“The U-boat assault in North American waters temporarily stunned both U.S. and
Canadian defense forces….From the outset, t...
“The British recommended that merchant ships should avoid obvious standard routings wherever
possible; navigational marker...
The Importance of
Blackouts
An Atlantic coastal city with no blackout
A blacked-out freighter sailing
along the inter coas...
awash and dispatched their victims with gunfire or torpedoes.…
“ Against this onslaught, American shipping defense measure...
awash and dispatched their victims with gunfire or torpedoes.…
“ Against this onslaught, American shipping defense measure...
submarine menace,’ wrote
Adm. King, ‘ it is the only
way that gives any promise of
success.’…. Dönitz promptly
began shift...
An Unusual Source
my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me
this memoir when he found out that we both had
trained at...
An Unusual Source
my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me
this memoir when he found out that we both had
trained at...
An Unusual Source
my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me
this memoir when he found out that we both had
trained at...
An Unusual Source
my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me
this memoir when he found out that we both had
trained at...
An Unusual Source
my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me
this memoir when he found out that we both had
trained at...
An Unusual Source
my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me
this memoir when he found out that we both had
trained at...
A Periscope, or Did We Imagine It? November ‘42
A Periscope, or Did We Imagine It? November ‘42
[The U-boats began their attacks] “against Texas oil ports and New Orleans...
Text
V. Return to the Mid-Atlantic
spring ’42-May ‘43
U-210 photographed from Assiniboine's deck,

6 August 1942!
“Following the adoption of convoys with air as well as surface escort in American waters,
Dönitz decided to shift the burd...
these convoys..…
“Dönitz recognized that a decisive victory could be obtained only in the mid-Atlantic. U-
boat production...
these convoys..…
“Dönitz recognized that a decisive
victory could be obtained only in the mid-
Atlantic. U-boat production...
(hereafter, ASGs) of six to eight destroyers, frigates, and corvettes. These Support
Groups, manned by highly experienced ...
manned by highly experienced personnel, had no regular escort duties, but were available to
come to the aid of convoys und...
these convoys..…
“Dönitz recognized that a decisive victory could be obtained only in the mid-Atlantic. U-
boat production...
“My one and only encounter with the enemy.…”
Narburgh, op. cit., p. 118
Spring ‘43
“My one and only encounter with the enemy.…”
“We were about 200 miles out over the Atlantic en route for Greenland and bro...
Early Screens
1942 Screens
1943-45 Screens
And don’t forget to zigzag!
These diagrams leave out an important element of the convoy system. They give the
impression o...
And don’t forget to zigzag!
These diagrams leave out an important element of the convoy system. They give the
impression o...
And don’t forget to zigzag!
These diagrams leave out an important element of the convoy system. They give the
impression o...
“…Dönitz prepared to build a new concentration of unprecedented magnitude in the North
Atlantic. The showdown came on Apri...
commander, Cdr. Peter W. Gretton RN,• and headed south into what proved to be a
concentration of 51 U-boats. Newfoundland-...
by dusk, as some 15 U-boats moved in, the battered convoy faced annihilation.…Then the
tactical situation changed complete...
by dusk, as some 15 U-boats moved in, the battered convoy faced annihilation.…Then the
tactical situation changed complete...
twelve months before the invasion of Normandy….Thus, under the combined pressure of
vastly improved Allied ASW and a great...
twelve months before the invasion of Normandy….Thus, under the combined pressure of
vastly improved Allied ASW and a great...
Text
VI. The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensive
May ’43-July ‘43
HMS Volunteer,(D-71) (1919-1945) one of the British
es...
SBDs on USS Sangamon, CVE-26
a fleet oiler converted to an escort carrier
November, 1942
Phase VI: The Central Atlantic
and Biscay Offensives
“Dönitz’ decision late in May 1943 to shift pack operations southwest...
Phase VI: The Central Atlantic
and Biscay Offensives
“Dönitz’ decision late in May 1943 to shift pack operations southwest...
Phase VI: The Central Atlantic
and Biscay Offensives
Airmen from the Bogue,…”
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
!
op. cit....
Phase VI: The Central Atlantic
and Biscay Offensives
and Santee in support of Central Atlantic convoys are virtually unsur...
Phase VI: The Central Atlantic
and Biscay Offensives
and Santee in support of Central Atlantic convoys are virtually unsur...
Phase VI: The Central Atlantic
and Biscay Offensives
and Santee in support of Central Atlantic convoys are virtually unsur...
Phase VI: The Central Atlantic
and Biscay Offensives
“Dönitz’ decision late in May 1943 to shift pack operations southwest...
“…was was a US air-dropped passive
acoustic homing anti-submarine torpedo
used during the Second World War against
German ...
introducing ‘Fido,’ the U.S. Navy’s new antisubmarine homing torpedo.”
“….In less than three months, Ingersoll’s Hunter-Ki...
introducing ‘Fido,’ the U.S. Navy’s new antisubmarine homing torpedo.”
“….In less than three months, Ingersoll’s Hunter-Ki...
introducing ‘Fido,’ the U.S. Navy’s new antisubmarine homing torpedo.”
“….In less than three months, Ingersoll’s Hunter-Ki...
“Although British bombers destroyed six submarines in the Bay of Biscay during the first
three weeks of July, the “Big Bay...
“Although British bombers destroyed six submarines in the Bay of Biscay during the first
three weeks of July, the “Big Bay...
this and the preceding map are
from u-boat.net (downloaded 25.iii.14)
Text
VII. The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic
Sept ’43-Feb ‘44
A Fleet Air Arm Avenger machine gun attack on a
U-boa...
Phase VII: The Final Struggle
for the North Atlantic
“After some three months of comparatively fruitless exploitation of tonnage warfare, Dönitz on
September 19, 1943 gave ord...
“After some three months of comparatively fruitless exploitation of tonnage warfare, Dönitz on
September 19, 1943 gave ord...
“Ultimately however the German offensive…was smothered by systematic day-and-night close
air escort of all threatened conv...
“In mid-October the Portuguese granted the British permission to operate Coastal Command a/c
from the Azores….”
!
Phase VI...
“Ultimately however the German offensive…was smothered by systematic day-and-night close
air escort of all threatened conv...
“Ultimately however the German offensive…was smothered by systematic day-and-night close
air escort of all threatened conv...
Text
VIII. The Final Campaign
Jan ’44-May ’45'
Seamen raise the White Ensign over a captured German
U-boat U-190 in St. Jo...
“For several significant reasons, including the Anglo-American invasion of France, U-boat
losses, which had totaled 237 du...
“For several significant reasons, including the Anglo-American invasion of France, U-boat
losses, which had totaled 237 du...
“For several significant reasons, including the Anglo-American invasion of France, U-boat
losses, which had totaled 237 du...
“During 1944 American Hunter-Killer Groups (H-KGs), assigned the task of affording distant
protection to North Africa- and...
attacking U-boats refueling near the Cape Verde Islands • en route to major offensives off
Capetown and in the Indian Ocea...
“During 1944 American Hunter-Killer Groups (H-KGs), assigned the task of affording distant
protection to North Africa- and...
“During 1944 American Hunter-Killer Groups (H-KGs), assigned the task of affording distant
protection to North Africa- and...
destroyed U-1059, thus concluding a highly successful cruise for this new H-KG.”
!
[spring 1944-BdU moved his refueling re...
blowing the stern off the DE Barr with a Zaunkönig, only to be destroyed by three patterns of
hedgehogs, ahead-thrown anti...
blowing the stern off the DE Barr with a Zaunkönig, only to be destroyed by three patterns of
hedgehogs, ahead-thrown anti...
of the most spectacular successes in the entire Atlantic struggle. On June 4, 1944, the DE
Chatelaine blasted U-505 to the...
Extra Credit
Name this Avenger pilot
who later achieved
great political success
of the most spectacular successes in the entire Atlantic struggle. On June 4, 1944, the DE
Chatelaine blasted U-505 to the...
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
US Navy in WW II; session v,  Battle for the Atlantic
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US Navy in WW II; session v, Battle for the Atlantic

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America begins her major role in the war by opposing the submarine menace, long before Pearl Harbor. This session looks at how antisubmarine warfare evolves. Without victory in this phase, the Allies could not have defeated Hitler.

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US Navy in WW II; session v, Battle for the Atlantic

  1. 1. The U.S. Navy in World War II session v-The Battle of the Atlantic
  2. 2. “The Boat” is a 1981 German epic war film an adaptation of the 1973 German novel of the same name by Lothar-Günther Buchheim the screenplay used an amalgamation of exploits from the real U-96, a Type VIIC- class U-boat one of Director Wolfgang Petersen’s goals was to guide the audience through “a journey to the edge of the mind” (the film’s German tagline Eine Reise ans Ende des Verstandes), showing “what war is all about” it grossed over $80 million ($208 million in 2013 dollars) worldwide…and received critical acclaim its high production cost ranks it among the most expensive films in German cinema history-Wikipedia
  3. 3. Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, DL, FRS, RA (1874 – 1965) was a British politician who was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom “ 1940 to 1945 and again from 1951 to 1955. Widely regarded as one of the greatest wartime leaders of the 20th century, Churchill was also an officer in the British Army, a historian, a writer, and an artist. He is the only British Prime Minister to have won the Nobel Prize in Literature, and was the first person to be made an honorary citizen of the United States.-Wikipedia
  4. 4. Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, KG, OM, CH, TD, DL, FRS, RA (1874 – 1965) was a British politician who was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom “ 1940 to 1945 and again from 1951 to 1955. Widely regarded as one of the greatest wartime leaders of the 20th century, Churchill was also an officer in the British Army, a historian, a writer, and an artist. He is the only British Prime Minister to have won the Nobel Prize in Literature, and was the first person to be made an honorary citizen of the United States.-Wikipedia “The only thing that ever really frightened me during the war was the U-boat peril.” ! Churchill, The Second World War, v. ii, p. 598 as quoted in Sea Power, p. 541
  5. 5. “From the Allied point of view, the Battle of the Atlantic…
  6. 6. “…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle was that much nearer victory. When a dramatic action took place at sea, the Allied cause came that much nearer defeat. Victory was won by many people, by merchant seamen who sailed in the freighters and tankers, … ! Ibid.
  7. 7. “…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle was that much nearer victory. When a dramatic action took place at sea, the Allied cause came that much nearer defeat. Victory was won by many people, by merchant seamen who sailed in the freighters and tankers, by stevedores who loaded and unloaded them,… ! Ibid.
  8. 8. “…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle was that much nearer victory. When a dramatic action took place at sea, the Allied cause came that much nearer defeat. Victory was won by many people, by merchant seamen who sailed in the freighters and tankers, • by stevedores who loaded and unloaded them,• by seamen, ratings, and officers who manned the escorting vessels and aircraft,• … ! Ibid.
  9. 9. “…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle was that much nearer victory. When a dramatic action took place at sea, the Allied cause came that much nearer defeat. Victory was won by many people, by merchant seamen who sailed in the freighters and tankers, • by stevedores who loaded and unloaded them,• by seamen, ratings, and officers who manned the escorting vessels and aircraft,• by shipyard workers who built both merchant ships and escorts,• …• ! Ibid.
  10. 10. “…was being won when nothing was happening. Every time a convoy arrived in port, the battle was that much nearer victory. When a dramatic action took place at sea, the Allied cause came that much nearer defeat. Victory was won by many people, by merchant seamen who sailed in the freighters and tankers, • by stevedores who loaded and unloaded them,• by seamen, ratings, and office rs who manned the escorting vessels and aircraft,• by shipyard workers who built both merchant ships and escorts,•and by the thousands of people on both sides of the Atlantic who plotted U-boat positions, routed convoys, organized sailing lists, experimented with new devices, and analyzed the results of previous actions.• ! Ibid.
  11. 11. There is a great irony about the U-boat war. Although it was Hitler’s only real chance to bring Britain to her knees, neither he nor his arch foe prepared for it properly before war’s outbreak. We’ve seen how Hitler opted for “Plan Z,” the building of capital ships, for political prestige. Therefore Germany had the fewest submarines of any of her foes or allies in September, 1939. Interestingly, that had also been true 25 years earlier. ! Dönitz had wanted 300. He had 56. And only 28 were fleet boats, capable of long range operations. ! Britain, on the other hand, also concentrated her naval building on large ships, neglecting the escort workhorses. Her strategic plan was to prepare to meet and defeat the surface raiders. Convoys would only be formed “if they proved necessary.” But in one vital area Britain was ahead of her enemy. ! jbp
  12. 12. “The Wizard War”-Churchill as early as WW I the need for underwater detection had prompted the development of what we call SONAR (sound navigation and ranging), the British ASDIC (too complicated to explain here) active sonar sends out a sound pulse and seeks an echo which will indicate presence, bearing and distance passive sonar consists of listening with hydrophones
  13. 13. “The Wizard War”-Churchill as early as WW I the need for underwater detection had prompted the development of what we call SONAR (sound navigation and ranging), the British ASDIC (too complicated to explain here) active sonar sends out a sound pulse and seeks an echo which will indicate presence, bearing and distance passive sonar consists of listening with hydrophones “Huff-Duff” (HF/DF, for high frequency direction finding) was also valuable for the Atlantic war. The surfaced U-boats would send messages back to Germany and that enabled their hunters to “fix” their positions
  14. 14. “The Wizard War”-Churchill as early as WW I the need for underwater detection had prompted the development of what we call SONAR (sound navigation and ranging), the British ASDIC (too complicated to explain here) active sonar sends out a sound pulse and seeks an echo which will indicate presence, bearing and distance passive sonar consists of listening with hydrophones “Huff-Duff” (HF/DF, for high frequency direction finding) was also valuable for the Atlantic war. The surfaced U-boats would send messages back to Germany and that enabled their hunters to “fix” their positions CH (for Chain Home) the land-based RADAR (radio direction and ranging) system was SLOWLY adapted to shipboard and aircraft (a/c) use
  15. 15. “The Wizard War”-Churchill as early as WW I the need for underwater detection had prompted the development of what we call SONAR (sound navigation and ranging), the British ASDIC (too complicated to explain here) active sonar sends out a sound pulse and seeks an echo which will indicate presence, bearing and distance passive sonar consists of listening with hydrophones “Huff-Duff” (HF/DF, for high frequency direction finding) was also valuable for the Atlantic war. The surfaced U-boats would send messages back to Germany and that enabled their hunters to “fix” their positions CH (for Chain Home) the land-based RADAR (radio direction and ranging) system was SLOWLY adapted to shipboard and aircraft (a/c) use
  16. 16. “Because efficient convoy escorts could not be improvised, most of the escorts early in the war were hurriedly adapted from fishing trawlers and other small craft, ill suited for the rigorous duties they had to undertake. Fortunately with asdic, and the parallel development of sonar in the United States, both…had a reliable underwater detector which, in the hands of an experienced operator, showed the direction and also the range of a submerged submarine out to approximately 1,500 yards. However the U-boats were later to adopt night surface attacks, thereby largely nullifying the advantage of asdic. In 1937 the Admiralty had regained full control of the Fleet Air Arm. Although this move had been made for the sake of fleet carrier operations, the Royal Navy could now integrate the Fleet Air Arm efforts into its antisubmarine warfare [hereafter, ASW] efforts. At the same time the navy also attained close cooperation with the R.A.F. Coastal Command in matters pertaining to the protection of shipping. This harmonious partnership proved a decisive factor in the Atlantic struggle.” ! Sea Power, pp. 541-542
  17. 17. Enigma machine an Enigma machine was an electro-mechanical rotor cipher machine used…for enciphering and deciphering secret messages. Enigma was invented by the German engineer Arthur Scherbius at the end of World War I German military texts enciphered on the Enigma machine were first broken by the Polish Cipher Bureau, beginning in December 1932 25 July 1939-in Warsaw, the Poles initiated French and British military intelligence representatives into their Enigma- decryption techniques and equipment, including Zygalski sheets and the cryptologic bomb, and promised each delegation a Polish-reconstructed Enigma A four–rotor Kriegsmarine Enigma machine on display! at the US National Cryptologic Museum Wikipedia
  18. 18. Enigma machine an Enigma machine was an electro-mechanical rotor cipher machine used…for enciphering and deciphering secret messages. Enigma was invented by the German engineer Arthur Scherbius at the end of World War I German military texts enciphered on the Enigma machine were first broken by the Polish Cipher Bureau, beginning in December 1932 25 July 1939-in Warsaw, the Poles initiated French and British military intelligence representatives into their Enigma-decryption techniques and equipment, including Zygalski sheets and the cryptologic bomb, and promised each delegation a Polish- reconstructed Enigma 26 Apr 1940-a Narvik-bound German patrol boat was captured yielding an instruction manual, codebook sheets and a record of some transmissions, which provided complete cribs. during the war, British cryptologists decrypted a vast number of messages enciphered on Enigma [at the GC&CS, Bletchley Park] . The intelligence gleaned from this source, codenamed "Ultra" by the British, was a substantial aid to the Allied war effort. A four–rotor Kriegsmarine Enigma machine on display! at the US National Cryptologic Museum Wikipedia
  19. 19. major topics in this session I. U-boat Operations Until the Fall of France II. The Mid-Atlantic Offensive Based on French Ports III. “All Aid to Britain Short of War” IV. The U-boat Offensive in American Waters V. Return to the Mid-Atlantic VI. The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives VII. The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic VIII. The Final Campaign
  20. 20. Text I. U-boat Operations Until the Fall of France September 1939-June 1940 the first U-boat victim, SS Athenia, 3 Sept 1939
  21. 21. With the onset of war both sides deployed mines with little effect
  22. 22. “When hostilities began Commodore Karl Dönitz was obliged to operate with only a handful of boats….Yet one of this handful, U-30, by torpedoing the Athenia on the opening day of the war, provided an apparent indication of German intentions regarding the resumption of unrestricted U-boat warfare and abruptly dispelled the British Admiralty’s hesitation in adopting the convoy system….” Sea Power, p. 542
  23. 23. “Because of wide fluctuations in escort availability, screening dispositions changed frequently. Theoretically the best defense against U-boat assault was a formation that completely enclosed the merchant ships. These were disposed on a broad front with short flanks, a formation which reduced the U-boat’s opportunities for beam attacks [attacks from the side-jbp] To protect a convoy with a perimeter of seven miles (e.g. ten columns of four ships, columns 600 yards apart, ships in column 400 yards apart, as was the practice in 1939-40) escort commanders initially adopted the box screen of World War I, stationing an escort on each corner of the merchant formation and ordering any additional units into the arc directly ahead. Early in World War II it was customary to employ cruisers or battleships in the escort, but when the threat of surface raiders diminished, the practice was abandoned as too dangerous to the large ships.” op. cit, pp. 542, 544
  24. 24. “Early British doctrine called for a prompt “hold down” on an attacking U-boat. Such tactics, though successful in limiting convoy losses before the advent of wolf pack operations, seldom produced a kill because there were so few escorts with each convoy, and most of these were of such relatively low speed, that they were obliged to rejoin their convoy before they were able to deliver the coup de grâce. Thus a U-boat that had evaded its attackers could often resume stalking the same convoy. Dönitz’ submariners favored night surface attacks from 45 degrees on either bow of the convoy, ensuring a short torpedo run that afforded the merchantmen little time for evasive action.” ! op. cit, pp. 542, 544
  25. 25. Torpedo failure—a widespread initial problem G7a T1 Kriegsmarine torpedo
  26. 26. “In the ultimate success of the Norwegian invasion the U-boats played no part, being frustrated by widespread torpedo failures. Off Narvik, Günter Prien • launched repeated attacks on anchored transports and cruisers, only to have his magnetic torpedoes run deep.An exhaustive analysis of such unsuccessful attacks convinced SKL that torpedo failures had prevented U-boats from claiming one or more battleships, seven cruisers, and a number of destroyers and transports. ! op. cit, pp. 542, 544
  27. 27. “In the ultimate success of the Norwegian invasion the U-boats played no part, being frustrated by widespread torpedo failures. Off Narvik, Günter Prien • launched repeated attacks on anchored transports and cruisers, only to have his magnetic torpedoes run deep.An exhaustive analysis of such unsuccessful attacks convinced SKL that torpedo failures had prevented U-boats from claiming one or more battleships, seven cruisers, and a number of destroyers and transports. “Humiliating as these northern operations proved for BdU,6 the spring of 1940 laid substantial foundations for Dönitz’ • subsequent months of triumph in the Atlantic. The acquisition of Norway’s entire coastline and the subsequent conquest of the Low Countries and France gave Hitler the means of turning Britain’s maritime flanks. While secondary U- boat havens were being established in Norway, Dönitz personally supervised the creation of heavily fortified bases on the French Atlantic coast at Brest, Lorient, St. Nazaire….Possession of these French bases meant a reduction of over 50% in the transit time of U-boats to their Atlantic hunting grounds.” ! op. cit, pp. 542, 544 _____________ 6 Befehlshaber der U-Boote : properly this term means Commander of Submarines, while the name for the command [that staff which he commanded] was Befehlshaber der U-Boote Bericht. In practice the Germans used BdU to refer to the command as well as the commander.
  28. 28. U-boat pens at Brest showing (little) damage after RAF raid which leveled the surrounding buildings
  29. 29. Lorient
  30. 30. The pens at St. Nazaire were not affected by the British commando raid in March 1942,! whose main objective were the Normandie dock gates. -Wikipedia
  31. 31. La Rochelle
  32. 32. Bordeaux
  33. 33. Brest Lorient St. Nazaire La Rochelle Bordeaux U-boat pens
  34. 34. U-96 heading out to sea from the massive pens at La Rochelle, Das Boot
  35. 35. Text II. The Mid-Atlantic Offensive Based on French Ports July 1940-May 1941 U-96 heading out to sea from La Rochelle harbor, Das Boot
  36. 36. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations “In July 1940 U-boats began operating from French bases. The reduction in cruising time to patrol stations had the effect of increasing the number of U-boats available in the operating areas. Thus Dönitz was able to make an attack on convoys by the tactical innovation of Rudeltaktik, or wolf pack operations. Still preferring to attack independent shipping, the U-boats nevertheless now had a means of forcing their way through the escorts to the body of the convoy….” ! op. cit., p.545
  37. 37. Sea Power, p. 563 First “Happy Time”
  38. 38. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations “The toll of Allied shipping mounted ominously, exceeding 500,000 tons in June; U- boats accounted for 58 merchantmen of 284,113 tons, largely in the vulnerable Southwestern Approaches. These June sinkings were but a prelude to the French-based “Golden Age” of the U-Waffe, a four month campaign in which Dönitz’ wolf packs, abetted by the Luftwaffe, unleashed their first crippling assaults on the North Atlantic convoys….” ! Ibid.
  39. 39. the listing at the uboat.net website continues to 1945 ! the dates give an indication of the length of a wolfpack operation http://www.uboat.net/ops/wolfpacks/
  40. 40. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations “Midway in July BdU concentrated his strength in the waters of Rockall Bank, 260 miles west of Scotland,.…” ! Ibid.
  41. 41. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations “Midway in July BdU concentrated his strength in the waters of Rockall Bank, 260 miles west of Scotland, • and for the first time employed wolf pack tactics. When a U-boat made contact with a convoy it would not attack immediately, but would trail, decks awash, well behind the target, while it reported the convoy’s course, speed, and composition to BdU headquarters in France. BdU would then assume tactical command, ordering other boats of the pack to make contact with the shadower. On the scene, the senior commander would then take over, attempting to coordinate a night surfaced attack that would swamp the escort and then annihilate the convoy.…” ! Ibid.
  42. 42. S.W. Roskill,The War at Sea; The Period of Balance, v. ii
  43. 43. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations “German submarine U-99 was a Type VIIB U-boat.… She was laid down on 31 March 1939 at the Friedrich Krupp Germaniawerft in Kiel.… She was launched on 12 March 1940 under the command of Korvettenkapitän Otto Kretschmer….” ! Wikipedia.
  44. 44. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations “German submarine U-99 was a Type VIIB U-boat.… She was laid down on 31 March 1939 at the Friedrich Krupp Germaniawerft in Kiel.… She was launched on 12 March 1940 under the command of Korvettenkapitän Otto Kretschmer….” ! Wikipedia. Otto der Schweigsame “Silent Otto”
  45. 45. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations “German submarine U-99 was a Type VIIB U-boat.… She was laid down on 31 March 1939 at the Friedrich Krupp Germaniawerft in Kiel.… She was launched on 12 March 1940 under the command of Korvettenkapitän Otto Kretschmer…and was assigned to the 7th U-boat Flotilla based in Kiel and later in St Nazaire. “U-99 was one of the most successful German U-boats in the war, sinking 38 ships for a total tonnage of 244,658 GRT of Allied shipping in eight patrols. • She damaged five more ships and took one vessel as a prize.” ! Wikipedia. Kretschmer with the crew of U-99 celebrating his Knight's Cross award in 1940
  46. 46. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations “German submarine U-99 was a Type VIIB U-boat.… She was laid down on 31 March 1939 at the Friedrich Krupp Germaniawerft in Kiel.… She was launched on 12 March 1940 under the command of Korvettenkapitän Otto Kretschmer • and was assigned to the 7th U-boat Flotilla based in Kiel and later in St Nazaire. “U-99 was one of the most successful German U-boats in the war, sinking 38 ships for a total tonnage of 244,658 GRT of Allied shipping in eight patrols. • She damaged five more ships and took one vessel as a prize.” ! Wikipedia.
  47. 47. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations “On his last patrol in March 1941, he sank 10 more ships, but these were to be his last victims. On 17 March 1941, during a counterattack by the British escorts of Convoy HX-112, U-99 was disabled after repeated depth charge attacks by the destroyers Walker and Vanoc. Kretschmer surfaced and, under fire from the British vessels, scuttled his boat. Three of his men were lost, but Kretschmer and the remainder of U-99's crew were captured….! “Kretschmer's usual standards of conduct were evident during the sinking of his boat; he signaled Walker asking for rescue for his men, taking care to ensure as many left the submarine as possible, and assisted some of his crew towards the rescue nets hung from the British destroyer. Kretschmer's strength was evidently failing in the cold ocean; his own rescue was at the hands of a British sailor who climbed down the nets and plucked him from the water.”! Wikipedia.
  48. 48. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations “The loss of three of their outstanding aces [7 Mar 41-Prien, 14 Mar-Kretschmer and Schepke] within little more than a week produced profound depression at BdU headquarters at Lorient. With other losses, the Germans were suddenly confronted with an attrition rate of nearly 20 % in the Northwestern Approaches….Dönitz reluctantly shifted his wolf pack operations some 200 miles to the west, beyond the range of Coastal Command bombers based on Northern Ireland. This move provided the first indication of his “tonnage warfare,” the strategic corollary of wolf-pack tactics. Tonnage warfare was founded on the concept of concentrating U-boat activity in areas where the most Allied merchant tonnage might be sunk at least cost to the U-Waffe. Thus, when defenses became strong in one area, Dönitz would shift his boats to another in order to capitalize on remaining “soft spots,” even though vital cargoes might meanwhile be delivered to crucial areas. As a result, during several critical periods in the war the North Atlantic was almost completely uncontested. “On April 1, 1941, the British Admiralty received operational control of the Coastal Command aircraft….Beginning in April, long-range aircraft were based on Iceland, whence they were able to cut drastically the size of the Black Pit.…” ! op. cit., p. 547.
  49. 49. MOMP= Mid-Ocean Meeting Point
  50. 50. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf Pack Operations “On May 27, 1941, there sailed from Halifax Convoy HX-129, the first North Atlantic convoy to be escorted all the way across the ocean. “This sailing marked the end of the second phase of the Battle of the Atlantic. Since the beginning of the war, the U-boats had sunk some 650 ships, yet only 10% of these had been lost from escorted convoys, and none had been sunk when air escort supplemented surface escorts. On the other hand, 60% of all U-boats lost had been sunk while attacking convoys. Now, the Germans would be obliged to attack convoys, accepting an increased loss rate of U-boats if they were to maintain their rate of sinkings.” ! op. cit., p. 548.
  51. 51. Text III. “All Aid to Britain Short of War” 27 May 41-17 Dec 41 FDR lays the foundation for American belligerence. We will not let Britain be conquered.
  52. 52. “From the earliest days of the war the United States had watched the events in Europe apprehensively, and most Americans desired to remain on the sidelines. The U.S. Navy had studied the Battle of the Atlantic…. “The end of the period of the “Phony War” awakened the American Congress to the threat from abroad. Swiftly it passed legislation providing for a two-ocean navy and for the first peacetime draft in United States history.” ! Ibid.
  53. 53. the first peacetime draft in United States history.“Events however were moving faster than legislation. Great Britain’s desperate need for destroyers grew more evident every day. On the other hand, considerable doubt existed, in Washington as elsewhere, that Britain could survive the German onslaught. The prospect that the Royal Navy might be turned over to Germany…. “…Roosevelt decided to take a calculated risk and transfer 50 American destroyers to the British flag. There was of course a danger that Germany would declare war on the United States, but Hitler had no desire to involve himself with America until the situation in Europe was settled. “Lord Lothian, British Ambassador…, concluded arrangements in late July whereby the U.S. would give 50 “obsolete” destroyers to Great Britain in return for 99-year leases on a series of bases running from Newfoundland to Trinidad. By mid-April the following year, the 50 destroyers had been delivered, as well as ten Lake-class Coast Guard cutters well equipped for anti-submarine duty.” ! Ibid.
  54. 54. Rudeltaktik (pack tactic) or Wolf pack Operations “…the need for escorts was desperate….Churchill as early as May 1940 requested the loan o f s o m e 5 0 A m e r i c a n destroyers for convoy work….” ! Ibid. American and British sailors examine depth charges. In the background are US Wickes- class destroyers before their transfer! —Wikipedia
  55. 55. year, the 50 destroyers had been delivered, as well as ten Lake-class Coast Guard cutters well equipped for anti-submarine duty….” “In an effort to give further assistance…,President Roosevelt in December 1940 proposed the idea of Lend-Lease. British ships would still have to pick up the goods; only the “cash” part of the “cash-and-carry” policy [of the Neutrality Act of 1937-jbp] was to be changed. This proposal, unlike the destroyers-bases deal, required congressional approval which took place in March 1941 after extensive hearings. Once again Hitler did not declare war. “The change from the Neutrality Act to Lend-Lease was another step in the President’s ‘all aid short of war’ policy….Roosevelt sent military representatives to England in August 1940 for ‘exploratory talks.’…followed by another [conference] in Washington in late January 1941 which…spelled out, first, America’s ‘short of war’ contribution and, second, the action to be taken by the U. S. in the event she was forced into the war. Fundamental to this doctrine was the basic concept that in event of war with Japan, Britain and the U. S. would devote their primary effort to defeating Germany first.” op. cit. p. 549
  56. 56. Fundamental to this doctrine was the basic concept that in event of war with Japan, Britain and the U. S. would devote their primary effort to defeating Germany first.” Ibid. “Germany was considered the more dangerous: “…because of her industrial development, “the achievements of her scientists, “her proximity to Britain and Russia, “and her military achievements thus far. “This strategic decision was never changed during the war….The United States agreed that in the near future the U.S. Navy would assist in escorting convoys in the North Atlantic. “To prepare….By mid-June plans…were made whereby the USN was to concentrate on the segment from Argentia Newfoundland to Iceland, where British escorts would take over.”
  57. 57. on the segment from Argentia, Newfoundland to Iceland, where British escorts would take over. [flashback:9 Apr 1940- Weserübung -11 Apr Faroe Islands occupied by Britain -10 May Iceland occupied by Britain] ! ! Ibid. 10 May 11 Apr
  58. 58. on the segment from Argentia, Newfoundland to Iceland, where British escorts would take over. [flashback:9 Apr 1940- Weserübung • -11 Apr Faroe Islands • -10 May Iceland • occupied by Britain] ! “The acquisition of terminal bases for these operations posed a difficult problem, one whose solution was suggested early in March [1941] when Hitler publicly extended his U-boats’ war zone right up to Greenland’s three-mile limit. Under strong British persuasion, the government of Iceland on July 7 permitted an American naval force to land the First Marine Brigade at Reykjavik as an advance element in relief of Britain’s garrison already there. Within two months, U. S. naval patrol squadrons were flying convoy coverage from Reykjavik, while surface escorts refueled at nearby Hvalfjordur.” ! Ibid.
  59. 59. U.S. Navy Vought SBU-1 dive bombers of scouting squadron VS-42 ! flying the Neutrality Patrol near Norfolk, Virginia, in 1940
  60. 60. garrison already there. Within two months, U. S. naval patrol squadrons were flying convoy coverage from Reykjavik, while surface escorts refueled at nearby Hvalfjordur. “While the [U.S.] Atlantic Fleet’s short-of-war operations provided badly needed protection for Allied and neutral shipping that joined American-escorted convoys….two grim years lay ahead before such coverage could be extended to the Greenland Air Gap.” ! Ibid.
  61. 61. MOMP= Mid-Ocean Meeting Point GAG= Greenland Air Gap
  62. 62. protection for Allied and neutral shipping that joined American-escorted convoys….two grim years lay ahead before such coverage could be extended to the Greenland Air Gap. “Three events in the spring of 1941 evoked further American action despite dangers of involvement in the war. First was the sinking by a German raider of the Egyptian liner Zamzam carrying 135 Americans. The second was the sinking in late May of the South African-bound American freighter Robin Moor by a U-boat which left without making any provisions for the safety of the crew.…” ! op. cit. pp. 549-550. Robin Moor Leo Waalen-convicted Nazi spy who received 12 years for giving the sailing plans which led to the sinking
  63. 63. protection for Allied and neutral shipping that joined American-escorted convoys….two grim years lay ahead before such coverage could be extended to the Greenland Air Gap. “Three events in the spring of 1941 evoked further American action despite dangers of involvement in the war. First was the sinking by a German raider of the Egyptian liner Zamzam carrying 135 Americans. The second was the sinking in late May of the South African-bound American freighter Robin Moor by a U-boat which left without making any provisions for the safety of the crew. The third was the appearance of the Bismarck which shocked American as well as British public opinion by her sinking of the Hood. On May 27, the very day the Bismarck was sunk, President Roosevelt declared an Unlimited National Emergency and announced…that more vigorous steps would be taken to keep the Germans from American waters.” ! op. cit. pp. 549-550.
  64. 64. Unlimited National Emergency and announced…that more vigorous steps would be taken to keep the Germans from American waters. “The U.S. Navy found itself as ill-prepared for antisubmarine war (hereafter, ASW) as the British had been in 1939. The obvious need was for an escort vessel smaller than a destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more rapidly than a destroyer and at lower cost. ” ! Ibid.
  65. 65. The Fletcher class was a class of destroyers built by the United States during World War II. The class was designed in 1939, …Length 396 ft. Beam 39.5 ft. Draft 17.5 ft. Displacement 2,100 ton. Speed 36.5 knots Main guns 5 x 5 inch AA 6 10x40 mm 7 10x20 mm 10x21 in Mk 5 torpedoes ASW 6 K-guns 2 depth charge racks! The United States Navy commissioned 175 Fletcher-class destroyers between 1942 and 1944, more than any other destroyer class, and the Fletcher design was generally regarded as highly successful. Fletchers had a design speed of 38 knots, armed with five 5" guns in single mounts and carrying 10 21" torpedoes in twin quintuple centerline mounts. The Buckley class destroyer escorts were…launched in the United States in 1942–1944. They served in World War II as convoy escorts and anti-submarine warfare ships….Length 290 ft. Beam 35 ft. Draft 9 ft. Speed 19 knots Main guns 3 x 3/50 inch AA 7 20 mm. ASW Hedgehog 24 bombs forward-firing between A & B guns, 2 depth charge racks! The lead ship was USS Evarts (DE-5), launched on 7 December 1942. The first ship to be completed was commissioned on 20 January 1943 at the Boston Navy Yard; it was delivered to the Royal Navy under the Lend-Lease provisions and became HMS Bayntun. By war’s end 563 were commissioned. DD DE290 ft. 396 ft.
  66. 66. DD www.destroyerhistory.org
  67. 67. DE Ibid.
  68. 68. “My” destroyer USS Charles H. Roan, DD-853
  69. 69. destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more rapidly than a destroyer and at lower cost….The British and Canadian navies began building…at the rate of about eight a month, and in July 1941 American shipyards started construction of them for the British at the rate of ten a month…. “The German invasion of Russia in June 1941 added considerably to the problems of supply, for the Russians were also afforded Lend-Lease aid and had few ships in which to transport the goods. To discuss this problem and others, Churchill and Roosevelt met at Argentia, Newfoundland in August.…” ! Ibid.
  70. 70. destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more rapidly than a destroyer and at lower cost….The British and Canadian navies began building…at the rate of about eight a month, and in July 1941 American shipyards started construction of them for the British at the rate of ten a month…. “The German invasion of Russia in June 1941 added considerably to the problems of supply, for the Russians were also afforded Lend-Lease aid and had few ships in which to transport the goods. To discuss this problem and others, Churchill and Roosevelt met at Argentia, Newfoundland in August.• This meeting enabled the Chiefs of Staff of the two countries to discuss plans for American escort of convoys, and it produced the Atlantic Charter, a statement of the war aims of England and the United States.” ! Ibid. Placentia Bay NAS Argentia
  71. 71. destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more rapidly than a destroyer and at lower cost….The British and Canadian navies began building…at the rate of about eight a month, and in July 1941 American shipyards started construction of them for the British at the rate of ten a month…. “The German invasion of Russia in June 1941 added considerably to the problems of supply, for the Russians were also afforded Lend-Lease aid and had few ships in which to transport the goods. To discuss this problem and others, Churchill and Roosevelt met at Argentia, Newfoundland in August..” ! Ibid.
  72. 72. destroyer and especially designed for convoy work, a vessel which could be built more rapidly than a destroyer and at lower cost….The British and Canadian navies began building…at the rate of about eight a month, and in July 1941 American shipyards started construction of them for the British at the rate of ten a month…. “The German invasion of Russia in June 1941 added considerably to the problems of supply, for the Russians were also afforded Lend-Lease aid and had few ships in which to transport the goods. To discuss this problem and others, Churchill and Roosevelt met at Argentia, Newfoundland in August. This meeting enabled the Chiefs of Staff of the two countries to discuss plans for American escort of convoys, and it produced the Atlantic Charter, a statement of the war aims of England and the United States.” ! Ibid.
  73. 73. First shots in the undeclared war—4 Sept 1941 In what became known as the "Greer incident," she became the first U.S. Navy ship to fire on a German ship, three months before the United States officially entered World War II. The incident led President Franklin D. Roosevelt to issue what became known as his "shoot-on-sight" order. Many have disputed whether the Greer acted aggressively before shots were exchanged.-Wikipedia
  74. 74. “President Roosevelt issued a statement declaring, ‘From now on, if German or Italian vessels of war enter the waters, the protection of which is necessary for American defense, they do so at their own risk.’ “…In mid-October BdU succeeded in staging a major attack against North Atlantic convoys. On that occasion, American escorts dispatched to the relief of convoy SC-48 learned a number of hard lessons, including the futility of indiscriminate depth charging and the need for aggressive night patrolling. Assaulted some 400 miles south of Iceland, this 50 ship convoy had already lost three vessels when five U.S. destroyers and two British escorts reached the scene. Their close screening tactics failed to prevent the U-boats [ of wolf-pack Mordbrenner (Arsonist-literally murderburner)-jbp] from sinking six more ships with relative impunity, and shortly thereafter they torpedoed but failed to sink the American destroyer Kearny as she was silhouetted by one of the burning freighters. ….” ! Ibid.
  75. 75. The damaged USS Kearny, DD 432
  76. 76. “President Roosevelt issued a statement declaring, ‘From now on, if German or Italian vessels of war enter the waters, the protection of which is necessary for American defense, they do so at their own risk.’ “…In mid-October BdU succeeded in staging a major attack against North Atlantic convoys. On that occasion, American escorts dispatched to the relief of convoy SC-48 learned a number of hard lessons, including the futility of indiscriminate depth charging and the need for aggressive night patrolling. Assaulted some 400 miles south of Iceland, this 50 ship convoy had already lost three vessels when five U.S. destroyers and two British escorts reached the scene. Their close screening tactics failed to prevent the U- boats [ of wolf-pack Mordbrenner (Arsonist-literally murderburner)-jbp] from sinking six more ships with relative impunity, and shortly thereafter they torpedoed but failed to sink the American destroyer Kearny • as she was silhouetted by one of the burning freighters. The Atlantic Fleet had scarcely digested the lessons of this encounter when it sustained its first loss, U.S.S. Reuben James, on October 31 as she and four other American destroyers were escorting HX-156 some 600 miles west of Iceland.” ! Ibid.
  77. 77. “…destroyers were escorting HX-156 some 600 miles west of Iceland.” “In spite of Allied air bases in Iceland, there still remained the Greenland Air Gap,…” ! op. cit. p. 551.
  78. 78. “…destroyers were escorting HX-156 some 600 miles west of Iceland.” “In spite of Allied air bases in Iceland, there still remained the Greenland Air Gap, • where U-boats ranged freely in the continued absence of aircraft and where convoys still sailed with inadequate numbers of surface escorts. To assign fleet carriers…was out of the question….Yet something had to be done…also to protect ships from Luftwaffe attacks, which had accounted for 44 ships…in the months of June-August….the Admiralty had been experimenting with inexpensive, easily constructed carriers….At first the British converted merchant ships or naval auxiliaries; later they designed escort carriers from the keel up. The first to see action, HMS Audacity, a converted German prize, proved herself in her short career.” ! op. cit. p. 551.
  79. 79. prize, proved herself in her short career.” “The Audacity accompanied Convoy HG-76 of 32 ships, whose escort of 12 corvettes, sloops, and destroyers, was under the command of Capt. Frederick John Walker [“Johnny Walker,” after the whiskey],• one of the RN’s ablest ASW commanders. ! Ibid.
  80. 80. prize, proved herself in her short career.” “The Audacity accompanied Convoy HG-76 of 32 ships, whose escort of 12 corvettes, sloops, and destroyers, was under the command of Capt. Frederick John Walker [“Johnny Walker,” after the whiskey],• one of the RN’s ablest ASW commanders. “The initial U-boat onslaught on December 17 was disrupted by several of the Audacity’s planes, which sighted U-131 some 20 miles ahead, homed in five escorts, and assisted them in sinking the contact keeper. Another stalker, U-434, was sunk by destroyers on the 18th, and although U-574 managed to blow up H.M. destroyer Stanley during a midnight m e l e e t h a t a l s o c l a i m e d a merchantman, H.M. sloop Stork finished off the U-boat by ramming. On December 21st, after Audacity’s airmen had destroyed four German Kondor aircraft,…” ! Ibid.
  81. 81. On December 21st, after Audacity’s airmen had destroyed four German Kondor aircraft, ….several U-boats finally succeeded in penetrating the screen at night, sinking one ship. The Audacity, steaming alone, ten miles from the convoy screen, fell victim to U-751 some 500 miles west of Cape Finisterre. Counterattacking with disciplined coordination, Walker’s escorts flushed U-567, sending her veteran crew to the bottom. Concurrently, the convoy came within range of UK-based air escorts. The combined effect broke the back of the pack’s running assault and induced BdU to break off this costly attack.” ! Ibid.
  82. 82. off this costly attack. Upon reviewing this nine-day operation, Dönitz recognized that the aggressive British escort tactics and particularly the use of the escort carrier, which had cost him five boats, raised serious doubts about the future of wolf pack operations in the eastern Atlantic. Renewed opportunity for successful tonnage warfare now beckoned from the west however, and by the close of 1941 the BdU was eagerly planning his first campaign in North American waters..” ! Ibid.
  83. 83. Text IV. The U-boat Offensive in American Waters Dec 41-Dec 42 The tanker Dixie Arrow torpedoed off Cape Hatteras by U-71 on 26 Mar 42 during the “Second Happy Time”
  84. 84. “During December 1941, Roosevelt devised the name ‘United Nations’ for the Allies of World War II, and the Declaration by United Nations, on 1 January 1942, was the basis of the modern UN. The term United Nations became synonymous during the war with the Allies and was considered to be the formal name that they were fighting under. The text of the declaration affirmed…”that complete victory over their enemies is essential to defend life, liberty, independence and religious freedom, and to preserve human rights and justice in their own lands as well as in other lands, and that they are now engaged in a common struggle against savage and brutal forces seeking to subjugate the world". The principle of "complete victory" established an early precedent for the Allied policy of obtaining the Axis' powers' "unconditional surrender”…. The declaration, furthermore, "upheld the Wilsonian principles of self determination," thus linking U.S. war aims in both world wars.”! Wikipedia
  85. 85. “After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor…had brought the U.S. officially into the war against the Axis powers, Churchill and his Chiefs of Staff visited Washington to work out with Roosevelt and the American Chiefs of Staff the strategic direction of the war. Churchill recognized that American aid to Britain would necessarily be cut back…as the U.S. began to grapple with her new responsibilities in the war. He recognized however the potential power of the New World and was confident of victory. ! ! op. cit. pp. 551-552. Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  86. 86. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;…” ! Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  87. 87. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the Chief of the Air Staff, Sir Charles Portal;…” ! ! Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  88. 88. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the Chief of the Air Staff, Sir Charles Portal;• and Field Marshall Sir John Dill, • the former Chief of the Imperial General Staff 11 Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  89. 89. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the Chief of the Air Staff, Sir Charles Portal;• and Field Marshall Sir John Dill, • the former Chief of the Imperial General Staff 11— •…” ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! __________ 11The Chief of the Imperial General Staff, General Sir Alan Brooke, • had assumed his duties only a month before, and was left behind under the Deputy Prime Minister in charge of military operations. ! Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  90. 90. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the Chief of the Air Staff, Sir Charles Portal;• and Field Marshall Sir John Dill, • the former Chief of the Imperial General Staff 11— sat down with General George C. Marshall, U.S. Army Chief of Staff;…” ! ! Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  91. 91. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the Chief of the Air Staff, Sir Charles Portal;• and Field Marshall Sir John Dill, • the former Chief of the Imperial General Staff 11— sat down with General George C. Marshall, U.S. Army Chief of Staff;• General Henry H. Arnold, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Air Corps;…” ! ! Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  92. 92. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the Chief of the Air Staff, Sir Charles Portal;• and Field Marshall Sir John Dill, • the former Chief of the Imperial General Staff 11— sat down with General George C. Marshall, U.S. Army Chief of Staff;• General Henry H. Arnold, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Air Corps;• and the newly appointed Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Ernest J. King.…” ! ! Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  93. 93. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the Chief of the Air Staff, Sir Charles Portal;• and Field Marshall Sir John Dill, • the former Chief of the Imperial General Staff 11— sat down with General George C. Marshall, U.S. Army Chief of Staff;• General Henry H. Arnold, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Air Corps;• and the newly appointed Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Ernest J. King. These men or their successors on the British side, and with the addition of Admiral William D. Leahy, Chief of Staff to the President,…” ! !
  94. 94. New World and was confident of victory. “….The British representatives—Admiral Sir Dudley Pound, the First Sea Lord;• the Chief of the Air Staff, Sir Charles Portal;• and Field Marshall Sir John Dill, • the former Chief of the Imperial General Staff 11— sat down with General George C. Marshall, U.S. Army Chief of Staff;• General Henry H. Arnold, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army Air Corps;• and the newly appointed Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Ernest J. King. These men or their successors on the British side, and with the addition of Admiral William D. Leahy, Chief of Staff to the President, constituted the Combined Chiefs of Staff. On their shoulders rested the burden of the responsibility for global war.” ! ! Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters
  95. 95. ! ! Ibid. Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters William D. Leahy, Chief of Staff to the President,• constituted the Combined Chiefs of Staff. On their shoulders rested the burden of the responsibility for global war. “Direction of the American effort fell to the Joint Chiefs of Staff—the four top American military men, Leahy, Marshall, Arnold, and King…. “To meet these new threats, the USN was extensively reorganized in the early months of the war. King had relieved Adm. Stark as Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) in December, 1941. Adm. Chester W. Nimitz • had relieved Adm. Husband E. Kimmel as Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet (Cincpac) in the same month.…”
  96. 96. ! ! Ibid. Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters Adm. Chester W. Nimitz h a d r e l i e v e d A d m . Husband E. Kimmel as Commander in Chief of t h e P a c i f i c F l e e t (Cincpac) in the same month. King’s old job as Cinc of the Atlantic Fleet (Cinclant) was taken over b y A d m . R o y a l E . Ingersoll. In March 1942, because of confusion as to the division of function of the offices of the CNO and that of the Cinc U.S. Fleet (Cominch), the two offices were vested in Adm. King….”
  97. 97. Phase IV: The U-Boat Offensive in American Waters Cinc U.S. Fleet (Cominch), the two offices were vested in Adm. King…. “Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor had proved a complete surprise to Germany. Thus, although Germany and Italy declared war on the U.S. on December 11, over a month elapsed before the U-boats could launch an attack on vulnerable American shipping. To the chagrin of Dönitz, eager for a spectacular blow, the SKL insisted on retaining a large proportion of some 64 boats in the Med and in the heavily patrolled approaches to Gibraltar. As a result, BdU was initially able to allocate only 5 1,100-ton U-boats for the impending attack on shipping between Cape Hatteras and the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
  98. 98. Gulf of St. Lawrence Cape Hatteras
  99. 99. impending attack on shipping between Cape Hatteras and the Gulf of St. Lawrence. This opening thrust, designated Operation PAUKENSCHLAG [‘drum beat’], was designed to paralyze offshore traffic, thus reducing the flow of oil and other raw materials to the east coast industrial areas. By a gradual extension into the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean, BdU hoped to stretch Allied escort strength to the breaking point. Dönitz calculated that seaborne trade in the Western Atlantic, weakly protected by inexperienced forces, might yet provide a key to tonnage victory…. “The U-boat assault in North American waters temporarily stunned both U.S. and Canadian defense forces….From the outset, these U-boats found particularly happy hunting off the Carolina Capes, discovering many merchantmen unarmed and some still burning their running lights. In the absence of convoys Rudeltaktik was unnecessary. Operating individually, the Germans lay submerged offshore until dusk, then moved in with decks awash and dispatched their victims with gunfire or torpedoes.…” ! op. cit., pp. 552-553.
  100. 100. “The U-boat assault in North American waters temporarily stunned both U.S. and Canadian defense forces….From the outset, these U-boats found particularly happy hunting off the Carolina Capes, discovering many merchantmen unarmed and some still burning their running lights. In the absence of convoys Rudeltaktik was unnecessary. Operating individually, the Germans lay submerged offshore until dusk, then moved in with decks awash and dispatched their victims with gunfire or torpedoes. Worldwide merchant tonnage losses were greatly inflated by this mounting slaughter. From December’s toll of 124,070 tons lost to U-boats, the totals climbed in January to 327,357 tons, 467,461 tons in February, and 537,980 tons in March.• During March, 28 vessels aggregating 159,340 tons were sunk in the Eastern Sea Frontier alone, over half of these ships being tankers.” ! op. cit., pp. 552-553.
  101. 101. “The British recommended that merchant ships should avoid obvious standard routings wherever possible; navigational markers, lighthouses, and other aids to the enemy should be removed, and a strict coastal blackout be enforced. In addition, any available air and sea forces should perform daylight patrols to restrict the U-boats' flexibility.! “None of the recommendations were followed for several months. Coastal shipping continued to sail along marked routes and burn normal navigation lights. Boardwalk communities ashore were only 'requested' to 'consider' turning their illuminations off on 18 December 1941, but not in the cities; they did not want to offend the tourism, recreation and business sectors. On 12 January 1942, Admiral Andrews was warned that "three or four U-boats" were about to commence operations against coastal shipping (in fact there were 3), but he refused to institute a convoy system on the grounds that this would only provide the U-boats with more targets.”! Wikipedia
  102. 102. The Importance of Blackouts An Atlantic coastal city with no blackout A blacked-out freighter sailing along the inter coastal waterway The view from a night-attacking U-boat
  103. 103. awash and dispatched their victims with gunfire or torpedoes.… “ Against this onslaught, American shipping defense measures proved inadequate….The slight value of these measures can be seen not only in the destruction of 23 ships in the Eastern Sea Frontier during April, but also in the fact that not a single U-boat had been sunk in this area during the first three months of the East Coast blitz. It is small wonder that the U- boat crews referred to this period as the “Second Happy Time. “Drastic measures were required to avert a shipping catastrophe….In February the British had given the U.S. 24 trawlers and ten corvettes, all provided with the latest asdic equipment. The first step toward providing coastal convoys…[they] ran escorted during daylight hours and put into protected anchorages at night….’Escort is not just one way of handling the submarine menace,’ wrote Adm. King, • ‘ it is the only way that gives any promise of success.’….” ! op. cit., p. 553.
  104. 104. awash and dispatched their victims with gunfire or torpedoes.… “ Against this onslaught, American shipping defense measures proved inadequate….The slight value of these measures can be seen not only in the destruction of 23 ships in the Eastern Sea Frontier during April, but also in the fact that not a single U-boat had been sunk in this area during the first three months of the East Coast blitz. It is small wonder that the U- boat crews referred to this period as the “Second Happy Time. “Drastic measures were required to avert a shipping catastrophe….In February the British had given the U.S. 24 trawlers and ten corvettes, all provided with the latest asdic equipment. The first step toward providing coastal convoys…[they] ran escorted during daylight hours and put into protected anchorages at night….’Escort is not just one way of handling the submarine menace,’ wrote Adm. King, ‘ it is the only way that gives any promise of success.’….” ! op. cit., p. 553.
  105. 105. submarine menace,’ wrote Adm. King, ‘ it is the only way that gives any promise of success.’…. Dönitz promptly began shifting his boats southward on the appearance of convoys….The Germans found profitable hunting in the Gulf of Mexico…where no convoy system existed, and sank 41 vessels…during May, nearly half being tankers torpedoed off the Passes of the Mississippi. This onslaught w a s c h e c k e d b y t h e e s t a b l i s h m e n t o f a n I n t e r l o c k i n g C o n v o y System….” ! op. cit., p. 553.
  106. 106. An Unusual Source my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me this memoir when he found out that we both had trained at Pensacola NAS; he in ’42, I in ’60
  107. 107. An Unusual Source my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me this memoir when he found out that we both had trained at Pensacola NAS; he in ’42, I in ’60
  108. 108. An Unusual Source my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me this memoir when he found out that we both had trained at Pensacola NAS; he in ’42, I in ’60 he had been 16 at the war’s start, did a stretch of Local Defense Volunteers, then at “17 ¼, old enough to follow in his father’s footsteps,” he joined the R.A.F.
  109. 109. An Unusual Source my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me this memoir when he found out that we both had trained at Pensacola NAS; he in ’42, I in ’60 he had been 16 at the war’s start, did a stretch of Local Defense Volunteers, then at “17 ¼, old enough to follow in his father’s footsteps,” he joined the R.A.F. as part of the “destroyers for bases deal” he trained in the States to fly multi-engines,
  110. 110. An Unusual Source my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me this memoir when he found out that we both had trained at Pensacola NAS; he in ’42, I in ’60 he had been 16 at the war’s start, did a stretch of Local Defense Volunteers, then at “17 ¼, old enough to follow in his father’s footsteps,” he joined the R.A.F. as part of the “destroyers for bases deal” he trained in the States to fly multi-engines, at first the PBYs
  111. 111. An Unusual Source my next-door neighbor John Narburgh offered me this memoir when he found out that we both had trained at Pensacola NAS; he in ’42, I in ’60 he had been 16 at the war’s start, did a stretch of Local Defense Volunteers, then at “17 ¼, old enough to follow in his father’s footsteps,” he joined the R.A.F. as part of the “destroyers for bases deal” he trained in the States to fly multi-engines, at first the PBYs during the war he ferried Lend-Lease a/c across the Atlantic to R.A.F. Coastal Cmd; later to our allies, the USSR 1993-his narrative came to be written when his letters home came to light. Using the documents as a skeleton, he added memories about events which wartime censorship had kept out of the letters he describes two “eyes on” encounters with the U- boats
  112. 112. A Periscope, or Did We Imagine It? November ‘42
  113. 113. A Periscope, or Did We Imagine It? November ‘42 [The U-boats began their attacks] “against Texas oil ports and New Orleans….[His Pensacola flight class was having] not only long-distance navigation exercises but also [trying] to spot and attack those U-boats. This was very exciting. We were armed with two depth charges under each wing, but no defensive armaments. There was a U.S. Navy pilot on board [each PBY] to take command if we spotted a U-boat.” “Suddenly, a periscope was spotted directly ahead. What excitement! The USN pilot slid into the first pilot’s seat and dived to 500 feet. [The periscope disappeared while they were still some distance out. They dropped two depth charges where they estimated his position to be. After circling for some time and not seeing any oil or debris, they began to doubt whether the sighting had been genuine or the product of someone’s imagination. The lesson Narburgh took from this incident was to always ask a second person to confirm any sighting.]” Narburgh, J.W.,”Keep ‘em Crossed ; Memories and Letters in WW II.” ms [np] [nd] 159 pp. typed, p. 63
  114. 114. Text V. Return to the Mid-Atlantic spring ’42-May ‘43 U-210 photographed from Assiniboine's deck, 6 August 1942!
  115. 115. “Following the adoption of convoys with air as well as surface escort in American waters, Dönitz decided to shift the burden of his attack back to the mid-Atlantic, where the U-boats would be free to attack convoys without air escort. Yet immediately he was called upon to divert a significant portion of his strength to attacking Allied convoys on the ‘Murmansk Run’ to North Russia. “British convoys to North Russia, begun in August 1941, had suffered negligible losses to U-boat and air attack during the first three months of 1942, but with the northward shift of German surface strength, the situation changed rapidly. [Tirpitz, Scheer, Lützow and Hipper].At this time, because of the Madagascar operation [Operation IRONCLAD], American units reinforced the Home Fleet at Scapa Flow and were available for operations to protect these convoys..…” ! op. cit., p. 555.
  116. 116. these convoys..… “Dönitz recognized that a decisive victory could be obtained only in the mid-Atlantic. U- boat production had by July, 1942 reached the rate of 30 boats a month, and this increase in strength enabled him to accept increased risks in making attacks on convoys.…” ! op. cit., p. 555. Hamburg U-boat shipyard
  117. 117. these convoys..… “Dönitz recognized that a decisive victory could be obtained only in the mid- Atlantic. U-boat production had by July, 1942 reached the rate of 30 boats a month,• and this increase in strength enabled him to accept increased risks in making attacks on convoys. The risks were constantly mounting, for most Allied air and surface escorts were now equipped with radar.… Adm. Sir Max Horton, Cinc of Western Approaches, formed Antisubmarine Support Groups (hereafter, ASGs) of six to eight destroyers, frigates, and corvettes.…” ! op. cit., p. 555.
  118. 118. (hereafter, ASGs) of six to eight destroyers, frigates, and corvettes. These Support Groups, manned by highly experienced personnel, had no regular escort duties, but were available to come to the aid of convoys undergoing heavy U-boat attack.•
  119. 119. manned by highly experienced personnel, had no regular escort duties, but were available to come to the aid of convoys undergoing heavy U-boat attack.• “Keenly conscious of the added danger of air escorts, Dönitz concentrated his attack in the Black Pit area.…” ! op. cit., p. 555.
  120. 120. these convoys..… “Dönitz recognized that a decisive victory could be obtained only in the mid-Atlantic. U- boat production had by July, 1942 reached the rate of 30 boats a month,• and this increase in strength enabled him to accept increased risks in making attacks on convoys. The risks were constantly mounting, for most Allied air and surface escorts were now equipped with radar.… Adm. Sir Max Horton, • Cinc of Western Approaches, formed Antisubmarine Support Groups (hereafter, ASGs) of six to eight destroyers, frigates, and corvettes. These Support Groups, manned by highly experienced personnel, had no regular escort duties, but were available to come to the aid of convoys undergoing heavy U-boat attack.• “Keenly conscious of the added danger of air escorts, Dönitz concentrated his attack in the Black Pit area.• He stationed picket lines on both sides….The loss figures mounted, reaching a peak of 807,754 G.R.T. in November 1942, at which time Dönitz was forced to weaken the attack in a belated effort to disrupt the North African landings. Nonetheless, U-boats continued their efforts in the Black Pit area, rising to a crescendo in March, 1943.” ! op. cit., p. 555.
  121. 121. “My one and only encounter with the enemy.…” Narburgh, op. cit., p. 118 Spring ‘43
  122. 122. “My one and only encounter with the enemy.…” “We were about 200 miles out over the Atlantic en route for Greenland and broke out of the clouds at about 5,000 feet, when right below we saw a German supply ship servicing six subs. Two of the subs were hooked up to the side of the ship, presumably taking on fuel and supplies, and the others were standing off just a short distance. I don’t know who was more surprised, us or the German sailors.” [Since Narburgh was ferrying aircraft from North America to the ETO, he flew unarmed. So he radioed the air base at Gander, Newfoundland. Their B-17s arrived near dusk and found nothing.] Narburgh, op. cit., p. 118 Spring ‘43
  123. 123. Early Screens 1942 Screens 1943-45 Screens
  124. 124. And don’t forget to zigzag! These diagrams leave out an important element of the convoy system. They give the impression of smooth sailing on a constant course at 6 kts. (slow convoys). If you’ve ever marched in a group you remember, when the unit does a Column Left or Right, those on the outside flank have to speed up while those on the opposite side mark time in place as the block pivots around them to the new “course,” 90º to the left or right. Well, the convoys would make “zigzag” course changes following no predictable pattern in order to confuse its attackers. At each zigzag its “guard dogs” would have to reorient the screen. The outer ships would speed up or often change places in order to reform the protective shield. Imagine those little corvettes or DEs pounding through the North Atlantic swells, giving every last bit of power to the task of gaining their station as the convoy reformed on its new leg! In my 2/c year, 1960-61, we practiced this sort of convoy screen maneuvering on the Chesapeake Bay in Yard Patrol craft (YPs).… jbp
  125. 125. And don’t forget to zigzag! These diagrams leave out an important element of the convoy system. They give the impression of smooth sailing on a constant course at 6 kts. (slow convoys). If you’ve ever marched in a group you remember, when the unit does a Column Left or Right, those on the outside flank have to speed up while those on the opposite side mark time in place as the block pivots around them to the new “course,” 90º to the left or right. Well, the convoys would make “zigzag” course changes following no predictable pattern in order to confuse its attackers. At each zigzag its “guard dogs” would have to reorient the screen. The outer ships would speed up or often change places in order to reform the protective shield. Imagine those little corvettes or DEs pounding through the North Atlantic swells, giving every last bit of power to the task of gaining their station as the convoy reformed on its new leg! In my 2/c year, 1960-61, we practiced this sort of convoy screen maneuvering on the Chesapeake Bay in Yard Patrol craft (YPs).• A challenge I still remember. The signal would be made by blinker light or flag hoist, “Reorient the screen to course 125, according to Plan Alpha Six.” And off we would go (or not) at flank speed. jbp USNA YPs passing under the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in 2008—Wikipedia
  126. 126. And don’t forget to zigzag! These diagrams leave out an important element of the convoy system. They give the impression of smooth sailing on a constant course at 6 kts. (slow convoys). If you’ve ever marched in a group you remember, when the unit does a Column Left or Right, those on the outside flank have to speed up while those on the opposite side mark time in place as the block pivots around them to the new “course,” 90º to the left or right. Well, the convoys would make “zigzag” course changes following no predictable pattern in order to confuse its attackers. At each zigzag its “guard dogs” would have to reorient the screen. The outer ships would speed up or often change places in order to reform the protective shield. Imagine those little corvettes or DEs pounding through the North Atlantic swells, giving every last bit of power to the task of gaining their station as the convoy reformed on its new leg! In my 2/c year, 1960-61, we practiced this sort of convoy screen maneuvering on the Chesapeake Bay in Yard Patrol craft (YPs). A challenge I still remember. The signal would be made by blinker light or flag hoist, “Reorient the screen to course 125, according to Plan Alpha Six.” And off we would go (or not) at flank speed. jbp
  127. 127. “…Dönitz prepared to build a new concentration of unprecedented magnitude in the North Atlantic. The showdown came on April 28 [1943], when westbound [Liverpool to Halifax] convoy ONS-5 was intercepted by a U-boat picket line off Iceland, losing one merchantman and escaping a general attack only by heading into a fog bank. Although badly scattered by a gale off Cape Farwell, this 42-ship convoy was brilliantly rounded up by its escort commander, Cdr. Peter W. Gretton RN, and headed south into what proved to be a concentration of 51 U-boats.…” ! ! op. cit., p. 558.
  128. 128. commander, Cdr. Peter W. Gretton RN,• and headed south into what proved to be a concentration of 51 U-boats. Newfoundland-based Catalina a/c claimed U-630 on May 4, but by nightfall U-boat group Fink [finch]was moving in from all quarters, catching the freighters sharply etched against the Northern Lights. Eleven U-boats nearly swamped ONS-5’s escort and sent seven ships to the bottom before dawn, adding four more victims the next morning from among the stragglers. The corvette Pink succeeded n depth-charging U-192 fatally,but by dusk, as some 15 U-boats moved in, the battered convoy faced annihilation.…” ! ! op. cit., p. 558.
  129. 129. by dusk, as some 15 U-boats moved in, the battered convoy faced annihilation.…Then the tactical situation changed completely.Nosing into another fog bank late on the evening of May 5, ONS-5 sustained no fewer than 25 separate attacks without losing a single ship. Lacking radar, Dönitz’ boats were repeatedly driven off by the seven escorts. The aggressive attacks of two freshly-arrived ASGs, taking maximum advantage of radar and HF/DF, completed the Germans’ frustration and helped send four more boats to the bottom between midnight and dawn….” ! ! Ibid.
  130. 130. by dusk, as some 15 U-boats moved in, the battered convoy faced annihilation.…Then the tactical situation changed completely.Nosing into another fog bank late on the evening of May 5, ONS-5 sustained no fewer than 25 separate attacks without losing a single ship. Lacking radar, Dönitz’ boats were repeatedly driven off by the seven escorts. The aggressive attacks of two freshly-arrived ASGs, taking maximum advantage of radar and HF/DF, completed the Germans’ frustration and helped send four more boats to the bottom between midnight and dawn.• “This action proved to be the climax of the Battle of the Atlantic. [emphasis added, jbp] The U-Waffe never recovered from this unexpected reverse off Newfoundland. German wolf packs had decimated their last Halifax convoy. The intervention of ASGs, escort carriers, and long-range a/c had provided the key to Allied success. In the three weeks following the ordeal of ONS-5, twelve convoys crossed the Black Pit, losing a total of only five ships, while air and surface escorts sank 13 U-boats. Against Dönitz’ large and relatively blind wolf packs, the British tactics of bait and kill now came to fruition, forcing the U-boats to abandon the North Atlantic in May and search for less dangerous hunting grounds. Confronted by the enormous loss of 41 submarines in “Black May,” BdU resorted once again to tonnage warfare strategy….This decision permitted relatively unimpeded passage of Allied convoys in the twelve months before the invasion of Normandy….” ! ! ! Ibid.
  131. 131. twelve months before the invasion of Normandy….Thus, under the combined pressure of vastly improved Allied ASW and a great increase in American shipbuilding, the strategy of tonnage warfare collapsed. In July monthly Allied ship production at last exceeded world- wide shipping losses from Axis action…. “The devastating antisubmarine offensive undertaken by Anglo-American forces late in the spring of 1943 was the product not simply of mounting warship and a/c production but also of extensive reorganization, systematic indoctrination of personnel, and decisive advances in the science of undersea warfare. The creation of the U.S. Tenth Fleet, invested with broad supervisory control of American antisubmarine development, proved of fundamental importance in stimulating effective training, supplying scientific methods to the perfection of weapons and tactics, and coordinating operational intelligence. Established on May 1, under the personal command of Adm. King,…” ! ! ! op. cit., pp. 558-559.
  132. 132. twelve months before the invasion of Normandy….Thus, under the combined pressure of vastly improved Allied ASW and a great increase in American shipbuilding, the strategy of tonnage warfare collapsed. In July monthly Allied ship production at last exceeded world- wide shipping losses from Axis action…. “The devastating antisubmarine offensive undertaken by Anglo-American forces late in the spring of 1943 was the product not simply of mounting warship and a/c production but also of extensive reorganization, systematic indoctrination of personnel, and decisive advances in the science of undersea warfare. The creation of the U.S. Tenth Fleet, invested with broad supervisory control of American antisubmarine development, proved of fundamental importance in stimulating effective training, supplying scientific methods to the perfection of weapons and tactics, and coordinating operational intelligence. Established on May 1, under the personal command of Adm. King,• this secret administrative organization provided comprehensive support for operations of the Atlantic Fleet, whose newly-activated Hunter-Killer Groups of escort carriers and destroyers or destroyer escorts were soon to distinguish themselves in the Central Atlantic.” ! ! ! op. cit., pp. 558-559.
  133. 133. Text VI. The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensive May ’43-July ‘43 HMS Volunteer,(D-71) (1919-1945) one of the British escorts which participated in the Biscay Offensive
  134. 134. SBDs on USS Sangamon, CVE-26 a fleet oiler converted to an escort carrier November, 1942
  135. 135. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives “Dönitz’ decision late in May 1943 to shift pack operations southwest of the Azores presented Commander U.S. Atlantic Fleet, Adm. Ingersoll, with the long-awaited opportunity to employ his new Hunter-Killer Groups.…” ! ! ! op. cit., p. 559.
  136. 136. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives “Dönitz’ decision late in May 1943 to shift pack operations southwest of the Azores presented Commander U.S. Atlantic Fleet, Adm. Ingersoll, with the long-awaited opportunity to employ his new Hunter-Killer Groups. For rapidity of tactical innovation, operations during the next three months by groups centered on escort carriers Bogue [CVE-9], Card, Core, and Santee in support of Central Atlantic convoys are virtually unsurpassed in naval history. Airmen from the Bogue,…” ! ! ! op. cit., p. 559.
  137. 137. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives Airmen from the Bogue,…” ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! op. cit., p. 559.
  138. 138. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives and Santee in support of Central Atlantic convoys are virtually unsurpassed in naval history. Airmen from the Bogue,• pioneering Wildcat-Avenger team tactics,…” ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! op. cit., p. 559. F4F-3-Grumman Wildcat fighter
  139. 139. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives and Santee in support of Central Atlantic convoys are virtually unsurpassed in naval history. Airmen from the Bogue,• pioneering Wildcat-Avenger team tactics,…” ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! op. cit., p. 559. TBF-Grumman Avenger dropping torpedo
  140. 140. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives and Santee in support of Central Atlantic convoys are virtually unsurpassed in naval history. Airmen from the Bogue,• pioneering Wildcat-Avenger team tactics,• located Group Trutz on June 3…sinking U-217 and milch cow U-118 • [an XB mine-laying boat, not a milch cow- Wiki] and damaging several other boats….” ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! op. cit., p. 559. U-118 Luftangriff
  141. 141. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives “Dönitz’ decision late in May 1943 to shift pack operations southwest of the Azores presented Commander U.S. Atlantic Fleet, Adm. Ingersoll, with the long-awaited opportunity to employ his new Hunter-Killer Groups. For rapidity of tactical innovation, operations during the next three months by groups centered on escort carriers Bogue [CVE-9], Card, Core, and Santee in support of Central Atlantic convoys are virtually unsurpassed in naval history. Airmen from the Bogue,• pioneering Wildcat-Avenger team tactics,• located Group Trutz on June 3…sinking U-217 and milch cow U-118 • [an XB mine-laying boat, not a milch cow- Wiki] and damaging several other boats….Subsequent efforts by this 17-boat pack to locate Central Atlantic convoys were frustrated south of the Azores in mid-July by the widely- roving Core and Santee groups, which destroyed four more boats, including two supply submarines, while introducing ‘Fido,’ the U.S. Navy’s new antisubmarine homing torpedo.” ! ! ! op. cit., p. 559.
  142. 142. “…was was a US air-dropped passive acoustic homing anti-submarine torpedo used during the Second World War against German and Japanese submarines. “It entered service in March 1943 and continued in service with the US Navy until 1948. “Approximately 4,000 torpedoes were produced, sinking 37 and damaging a further 18 submarines out of a total of 204 fired. “The torpedo was also supplied to the British and Canadian forces. “The deceptive name of ‘Mark 24 Mine’ was deliberately chosen for security purposes, to conceal the true nature of the weapon.”—Wikipedia “Mark 24 mine (also known as FIDO or Fido)
  143. 143. introducing ‘Fido,’ the U.S. Navy’s new antisubmarine homing torpedo.” “….In less than three months, Ingersoll’s Hunter-Killer Groups had sunk15 U-boats, eight operating as supply boats, with the loss of only three aircraft. This attrition of U-tankers, sharply contrasting with the sinking of one merchantman, effectively disrupted German efforts to concentrate on Central Atlantic convoys and greatly reduced the impact of U-boat operations in the Caribbean and in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans. “Severe as were the U-Waffe’s losses in mid-Atlantic, they were of less concern to BdU than the concurrent slaughter of U-boats in the Bay of Biscay, where since the spring of 1942 the R.A.F. Coastal Command had been attempting a sustained offensive. Employing radar, the British a/c had enjoyed a limited success….” ! Ibid. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives
  144. 144. introducing ‘Fido,’ the U.S. Navy’s new antisubmarine homing torpedo.” “….In less than three months, Ingersoll’s Hunter-Killer Groups had sunk15 U-boats, eight operating as supply boats, with the loss of only three aircraft. This attrition of U-tankers, sharply contrasting with the sinking of one merchantman, effectively disrupted German efforts to concentrate on Central Atlantic convoys and greatly reduced the impact of U-boat operations in the Caribbean and in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans. “Severe as were the U-Waffe’s losses in mid-Atlantic, they were of less concern to BdU than the concurrent slaughter of U-boats in the Bay of Biscay, where since the spring of 1942 the R.A.F. Coastal Command had been attempting a sustained offensive. Employing radar, the British a/c had enjoyed a limited success….This advantage disappeared when Dönitz began fitting his U- boats with a radar detector called Metox,• which could pick up the radar search signal at a far greater range than the reflected signal could be detected by the search receiver. …[Next,] the British developed a new ultra-high-frequency (UHF) of 10 cm. wavelength, which Metox could not detect.…” ! Ibid. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives FuMB-1 Metox - This rudimentary antenna, consisted of five pieces of wood tied together into a cross, with wires wrapped around it. It was installed into a bracket on the conning tower and periodically was rotated by hand.-Wikipedia
  145. 145. introducing ‘Fido,’ the U.S. Navy’s new antisubmarine homing torpedo.” “….In less than three months, Ingersoll’s Hunter-Killer Groups had sunk15 U-boats, eight operating as supply boats, with the loss of only three aircraft. This attrition of U-tankers, sharply contrasting with the sinking of one merchantman, effectively disrupted German efforts to concentrate on Central Atlantic convoys and greatly reduced the impact of U-boat operations in the Caribbean and in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans. “Severe as were the U-Waffe’s losses in mid-Atlantic, they were of less concern to BdU than the concurrent slaughter of U-boats in the Bay of Biscay, where since the spring of 1942 the R.A.F. Coastal Command had been attempting a sustained offensive. Employing radar, the British a/c had enjoyed a limited success….This advantage disappeared when Dönitz began fitting his U- boats with a radar detector called Metox,• which could pick up the radar search signal at a far greater range than the reflected signal could be detected by the search receiver. …[Next,] the British developed a new ultra-high-frequency (UHF) of 10 cm. wavelength, which Metox could not detect. The attacks continued, aided by the a/c Leigh Light,• an 80-million candlepower attack searchlight, employed in conjunction with radar in sudden blinding night attacks from the air. ! Ibid. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives
  146. 146. “Although British bombers destroyed six submarines in the Bay of Biscay during the first three weeks of July, the “Big Bay Slaughter” did not get underway until the 28th. In the next week, American and British a/c… sank nine U-boats. Under such relentless pressure BdU not only discontinued its group transit policy but early in August suspended all departures from Biscay bases.Thus the Bay offensive culminated in a virtual blockade of Dönitz’ West France flotillas. Later BdU managed to resume sailings, routing its U-boats along the northern coast of Spain •….Altogether…28 U-boats were sunk attempting passage of the Bay of Biscay.” ! Ibid. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives
  147. 147. “Although British bombers destroyed six submarines in the Bay of Biscay during the first three weeks of July, the “Big Bay Slaughter” did not get underway until the 28th. In the next week, American and British a/c… sank nine U-boats. Under such relentless pressure BdU not only discontinued its group transit policy but early in August suspended all departures from Biscay bases.Thus the Bay offensive culminated in a virtual blockade of Dönitz’ West France flotillas. Later BdU managed to resume sailings, routing its U-boats along the northern coast of Spain •….Altogether…28 U-boats were sunk attempting passage of the Bay of Biscay.” ! Ibid. Phase VI: The Central Atlantic and Biscay Offensives
  148. 148. this and the preceding map are from u-boat.net (downloaded 25.iii.14)
  149. 149. Text VII. The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic Sept ’43-Feb ‘44 A Fleet Air Arm Avenger machine gun attack on a U-boat during a convoy to Russia, April 1944
  150. 150. Phase VII: The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic
  151. 151. “After some three months of comparatively fruitless exploitation of tonnage warfare, Dönitz on September 19, 1943 gave orders to strike once again at the main Allied North Atlantic convoy routes. He was now prepared to employ a new weapon, the Zaunkönig,• or acoustical torpedo, which would ‘home’ on a ship’s screws.…” ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! op. cit. pp. 560-561. Phase VII: The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic
  152. 152. “After some three months of comparatively fruitless exploitation of tonnage warfare, Dönitz on September 19, 1943 gave orders to strike once again at the main Allied North Atlantic convoy routes. He was now prepared to employ a new weapon, the Zaunkönig,• or acoustical torpedo, which would ‘home’ on a ship’s screws. Designed to be employed against the escorts, it was supposed to blast a hole in the screen to permit attacks on the merchant ships with conventional torpedoes. In September Group Leuthen struck at westbound convoys ON-202 and ONS-18, sinking three escorts, damaging one, and sending six merchant ships to the bottom. To counter the Zaunkönig, British and American warships began using a noisemaking countermeasure called ‘Foxer,’ which when trailed astern drew the acoustic torpedoes harmlessly into it.” ! op. cit. pp. 560-561. Phase VII: The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic
  153. 153. “Ultimately however the German offensive…was smothered by systematic day-and-night close air escort of all threatened convoys—in the old Black Pit as well as elsewhere. In this work land- based planes coordinated with a/c flying from escort carriers, which operated either with the convoys or with British Antisubmarine Surface Support Groups (ASSGs)….These countermeasures proved so effective that Dönitz withdrew his boats from the Black Pit and in October attempted a concentration south of Iceland only to lose three boats to land-based a/c. Although BdU realized the extreme peril of attacking convoys in the North Atlantic, he persisted in doing so until February 1944, enduring heavy losses while inflicting only slight damage to Allied shipping. The combination of close surface escort, land-based air escort, and ASSGs with CVEs for local air support had made the North Atlantic convoys virtually immune to attack. “In mid-October the Portuguese granted the British permission to operate Coastal Command a/c from the Azores.…’” ! op. cit. p. 561. Phase VII: The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic
  154. 154. “In mid-October the Portuguese granted the British permission to operate Coastal Command a/c from the Azores….” ! Phase VII: The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic
  155. 155. “Ultimately however the German offensive…was smothered by systematic day-and-night close air escort of all threatened convoys—in the old Black Pit as well as elsewhere. In this work land- based planes coordinated with a/c flying from escort carriers, which operated either with the convoys or with British Antisubmarine Surface Support Groups (ASSGs)….These countermeasures proved so effective that Dönitz withdrew his boats from the Black Pit and in October attempted a concentration south of Iceland only to lose three boats to land-based a/c. Although BdU realized the extreme peril of attacking convoys in the North Atlantic, he persisted in doing so until February 1944, enduring heavy losses while inflicting only slight damage to Allied shipping. The combination of close surface escort, land-based air escort, and ASSGs with CVEs for local air support had made the North Atlantic convoys virtually immune to attack. “In mid-October the Portuguese granted the British permission to operate Coastal Command a/c from the Azores.• This acquisition…combined with night air escort proved the final blow to Dönitz’ hopes [and]….effectively broke the back of this last wolf pack effort. Pending the activation of the high-speed Type XXI U-boat,• whose production was beginning to suffer under Allied bombing raids, …” ! op. cit. p. 561. Phase VII: The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic
  156. 156. “Ultimately however the German offensive…was smothered by systematic day-and-night close air escort of all threatened convoys—in the old Black Pit as well as elsewhere. In this work land- based planes coordinated with a/c flying from escort carriers, which operated either with the convoys or with British Antisubmarine Surface Support Groups (ASSGs)….These countermeasures proved so effective that Dönitz withdrew his boats from the Black Pit and in October attempted a concentration south of Iceland only to lose three boats to land-based a/c. Although BdU realized the extreme peril of attacking convoys in the North Atlantic, he persisted in doing so until February 1944, enduring heavy losses while inflicting only slight damage to Allied shipping. The combination of close surface escort, land-based air escort, and ASSGs with CVEs for local air support had made the North Atlantic convoys virtually immune to attack. “In mid-October the Portuguese granted the British permission to operate Coastal Command a/c from the Azores.• This acquisition…combined with night air escort proved the final blow to Dönitz’ hopes [and]….effectively broke the back of this last wolf pack effort. Pending the activation of the high-speed Type XXI U-boat,• whose production was beginning to suffer under Allied bombing raids, Dönitz candidly stated,•’In the present phase of the campaign it is not victory but the survival of boats and their crews that must take priority.’” ! op. cit. p. 561. Phase VII: The Final Struggle for the North Atlantic
  157. 157. Text VIII. The Final Campaign Jan ’44-May ’45' Seamen raise the White Ensign over a captured German U-boat U-190 in St. John’s, Newfoundland in 1945
  158. 158. “For several significant reasons, including the Anglo-American invasion of France, U-boat losses, which had totaled 237 during 1943, increased during the following year, while the production of the much-vaunted hydrogen-peroxide Walther U-boat continued to be delayed. Dönitz, now Cinc of the German navy, was obliged to expend his U-Waffe in operations far from the vital North Atlantic. “The Royal Navy’s CVE groups came fully into their own with the Murmansk convoys, which became the sole focus of wolf pack activity in 1944….The northbound convoy JW-58 provided an example of an antisubmarine task force: 2 CVEs, 2 antiaircraft cruisers, and a close screen of nine warships, and enjoying the close cover of two ASGs.…” ! Ibid. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign but the survival of boats and their crews that must take priority.’
  159. 159. “For several significant reasons, including the Anglo-American invasion of France, U-boat losses, which had totaled 237 during 1943, increased during the following year, while the production of the much-vaunted hydrogen-peroxide Walther U-boat continued to be delayed. Dönitz, now Cinc of the German navy, was obliged to expend his U-Waffe in operations far from the vital North Atlantic. “The Royal Navy’s CVE groups came fully into their own with the Murmansk convoys, which became the sole focus of wolf pack activity in 1944….The northbound convoy JW-58 provided an example of an antisubmarine task force: 2 CVEs, 2 antiaircraft cruisers, and a close screen of nine warships, and enjoying the close cover of two ASGs. Capt. F.J. [‘Johnny’] Walker RN, who had commanded the Audacity group in December 1942, was in command of the escort. His group claimed the first shadower, U-961, on March 29, after which a/c from HMS Tracker and Activity teamed up with the close escort to dispose of three more boats, while the convoy proceeded without loss to Murmansk….” ! Ibid. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign but the survival of boats and their crews that must take priority.’
  160. 160. “For several significant reasons, including the Anglo-American invasion of France, U-boat losses, which had totaled 237 during 1943, increased during the following year, while the production of the much-vaunted hydrogen-peroxide Walther U-boat continued to be delayed. Dönitz, now Cinc of the German navy, was obliged to expend his U-Waffe in operations far from the vital North Atlantic. “The Royal Navy’s CVE groups came fully into their own with the Murmansk convoys, which became the sole focus of wolf pack activity in 1944….The northbound convoy JW-58 provided an example of an antisubmarine task force: 2 CVEs, 2 antiaircraft cruisers, and a close screen of nine warships, and enjoying the close cover of two ASGs. Capt. F.J. [‘Johnny’] Walker RN, who had commanded the Audacity group in December 1942, was in command of the escort. His group claimed the first shadower, U-961, on March 29, after which a/c from HMS Tracker and Activity teamed up with the close escort to dispose of three more boats, while the convoy proceeded without loss to Murmansk….Altogether British CVEs destroyed 13 U-boats in northern waters during 1944, a period in which Murmansk convoys suffered the loss of only six ships. Increasingly heavy Luftwaffe attacks on subsequent convoys proved futile. Thus ended the grimly dramatic history of the North Russian convoys.” ! Ibid. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign but the survival of boats and their crews that must take priority.’
  161. 161. “During 1944 American Hunter-Killer Groups (H-KGs), assigned the task of affording distant protection to North Africa- and Mediterranean-bound convoys, fulfilled their purpose chiefly by attacking U-boats refueling near the Cape Verde Islands • en route to major offensives off Capetown and in the Indian Ocean.…” ! op. cit., pp. 561-562. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign the North Russian convoys.”
  162. 162. attacking U-boats refueling near the Cape Verde Islands • en route to major offensives off Capetown and in the Indian Ocean. Late in February U-709 blundered into a H-KG built around the Block Island (CVE-21)•…” ! Phase VIII: The Final Campaign
  163. 163. “During 1944 American Hunter-Killer Groups (H-KGs), assigned the task of affording distant protection to North Africa- and Mediterranean-bound convoys, fulfilled their purpose chiefly by attacking U-boats refueling near the Cape Verde Islands • en route to major offensives off Capetown and in the Indian Ocean. Late in February U-709 blundered into a H-KG built around the Block Island (CVE-21)• and was promptly finished off by two DEs, Bronstein (DE-189) • and Thomas.… Phase VIII: The Final Campaign USS Bronstein (DE-189) Presidential Unit Citation
  164. 164. “During 1944 American Hunter-Killer Groups (H-KGs), assigned the task of affording distant protection to North Africa- and Mediterranean-bound convoys, fulfilled their purpose chiefly by attacking U-boats refueling near the Cape Verde Islands • en route to major offensives off Capetown and in the Indian Ocean. Late in February U-709 blundered into a H-KG built around the Block Island (CVE-21)• and was promptly finished off by two DEs, Bronstein (DE-189) • and Thomas.…Shortly after midnight on the 29th, the Bronstein’s captain, Sheldon H. Kinney,• [USNA, Class of ’41; Commandant of Midshipmen, 1963-67] detected U-603 moving toward the Block Island, drove the German down, and shortly thereafter delivered the coup de grâce… the group headed southwest toward a concentration of U-boats off the Cape Verdes, being rewarded on March 17 when the Corry and the Bronstein, following up a series of aerial attacks, sent the U-801 to the bottom. Two days later, the Block Island’s a/c spotted and destroyed U-1059, thus concluding a highly successful cruise for this new H-KG.” ! op. cit., pp. 561-562. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign
  165. 165. destroyed U-1059, thus concluding a highly successful cruise for this new H-KG.” ! [spring 1944-BdU moved his refueling rendezvous “some 700 miles further west” to no avail. “Mid-Atlantic worse than Bay of Biscay” radioed U-66, just before being sunk-jbp] ! “German transients henceforth exercised extreme caution in surfacing off the Cape Verdes, keeping a sharp lookout for CVEs. Late in May, U-549 escaped several attacks by a/c from the Block Island and, penetrating the screen, on the night of the 29th, sent two torpedoes into her. Amid the confusion of rescue operations and depth charge barrages, the U-boat succeeded in blowing the stern off the DE Barr with a Zaunkönig, only to be destroyed by three patterns of hedgehogs, ahead-thrown antisubmarine weapons.…” ! op. cit., p. 562. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign
  166. 166. blowing the stern off the DE Barr with a Zaunkönig, only to be destroyed by three patterns of hedgehogs, ahead-thrown antisubmarine weapons.• The Block Island’s loss was avenged early in June when a group built around CVE Guadalcanal, Captain Daniel V. Gallery, achieved one of the most spectacular successes in the entire Atlantic struggle.” ! op. cit., p. 562. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign
  167. 167. blowing the stern off the DE Barr with a Zaunkönig, only to be destroyed by three patterns of hedgehogs, ahead-thrown antisubmarine weapons.• The Block Island’s loss was avenged early in June when a group built around CVE Guadalcanal, Captain Daniel V. Gallery, achieved one of the most spectacular successes in the entire Atlantic struggle.” ! op. cit., p. 562. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign
  168. 168. of the most spectacular successes in the entire Atlantic struggle. On June 4, 1944, the DE Chatelaine blasted U-505 to the surface with assistance from the carrier’s Avengers.• ! op. cit., p. 562. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign
  169. 169. Extra Credit Name this Avenger pilot who later achieved great political success
  170. 170. of the most spectacular successes in the entire Atlantic struggle. On June 4, 1944, the DE Chatelaine blasted U-505 to the surface with assistance from the carrier’s Avengers.• As the Germans hurriedly abandoned ship, a boarding party from the DE Pillsbury plunged down the conning tower hatch, disconnected the scuttling charges, and checked the flooding. Skillfully brought under tow by the Guadalcanal, the U-505 proved an exceptionally valuable capture, for with her code books and cipher machine, naval authorities were henceforth able to decipher operational orders from BdU. [note how our text, published in 1960, is unaware of Bletchley Park’s work, top secret until the next decade-jbp] ! op. cit., p. 562. Phase VIII: The Final Campaign

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