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The Wolf Packs Gather by Bernard Edwards

Title The Wolf Packs Gather
Author Bernard Edwards
Publisher Casemate Publishers
Release 2012-07-19
Category History
Total Pages 208
ISBN 1844689778
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

The capture by the German surface raider Atlantis of the British steamer City of Baghdads secret code books in July 1940 enabled the Nazis to de-cypher Admiralty convoy plans with deadly effect. This book describes the resulting appalling Allied losses suffered by four convoys during the Autumn of 1940. Admiral Donetz, aware of the movements of the Allied convoys, marshaled as many of his U-boats as possible. The first convoy, SC2, consisting of 53 merchant men was attacked in early September by four U-boats. Due to poor weather only five ships were lost. Shortly after HX72, with 41 ships, sailing from Nova Scotia, lost eleven ships to five Type VIIC U-boats. Top Aces Otto Kretschremer and Joachim Schepke, who penetrated inside the columns, accounted for nine. No less than nine U-boats attacked SC7 in October 1940. Of 35 merchant men a staggering 20 were lost. HX79 also fared terribly despite being a fast convoy with ten escorts, losing twelve ships. In total forty-eight merchant men were sunk and seven more damaged without any U-boat losses at all. The Wolf Packs Gather is an authoritative account of the darkest hours of the War in the Atlantic. It describes not only the German tactics but the inadequacies of what few escorts there were and the heartbreaking loss of defenseless life.

Churchill s Greatest Fear by Richard Doherty

Title Churchill s Greatest Fear
Author Richard Doherty
Publisher Pen and Sword
Release 2015-11-30
Category History
Total Pages 320
ISBN 1473879418
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

The Battle of the Atlantic (Churchill's term) was arguably the pivotal campaign of the Second World War it was certainly the longest starting with the sinking of RMS Athenia on 3 September 1939 and ending with the torpedoing of SS Avon Dale on 7 May 1945.This superbly researched work covers all the major aspects of The Battle, balancing the initial advantages of Admiral Doenitz's U-Boat force, the introduction of the convoy system, the role of the opposing surface fleets and air forces, relative strengths and the all important technical developments. Intelligence particularly the Bletchley Park intercepts played an increasingly important part in the final outcome.The author concludes that May 1943 was the moment when the Allies seized the initiative and, despite desperate German efforts, never lost their advantage.Using official records, personal accounts and a wealth of historical research, this work gives the reader a splendidly concise yet broad account of the course of the campaign, the men who fought it on both sides and the critical moments and analysis of the outcome.

Donitz and the Wolf Packs by Bernard Edwards

Title Donitz and the Wolf Packs
Author Bernard Edwards
Publisher Pen and Sword
Release 2014-07-30
Category History
Total Pages 240
ISBN 1473822939
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

On 17 September 1942 Admiral Karl Donitz, C-in-C U-boats, issued the following directive:??To all Commanders - 'All attempts to rescue members of ships sunk, therefore also fishing out swimmers and putting them into lifeboats, righting capsized lifeboats, handing out provisions and water, have to cease. Rescue contradicts the most fundamental demands of war for the annihilation of enemy ships and crews'.??This order ended what had hitherto been a war in which the opposing factions treated each other with a certain respect, seaman to seaman, showing mercy where mercy was due. It also marked the point at which the Battle of the Atlantic became a dirty war of attrition, with the U-boats hunting in packs snarling and snapping at the heels of the hard-pressed convoys. Ships began to go down like corn before the reaper, men were dying in their hundreds in the cold grey waters of the great ocean. This was a battle without quarter. A battle the U-boats would have won had it not been for the grit and determination of the convoy escorts and the unflagging resilience of the men who manned the vulnerable merchant ships.??This book faithfully records the progress of the Battle of the Atlantic, which began within hours of the declaration of war on 3 September 1939 and continued without let-up until the last torpedo was fired on the night of 7 May 1945, just one hour before Germany surrendered. The story is told from both sides of the periscope.

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