Bermuda's History from World War 2 to
The Battle of the Atlantic was the longest continuous military campaign in World War II, running America · Northern Barrage · Blockade of Germany · Caribbean . 1 Name; 2 Background; 3 Early skirmishes (September – May ) The first meeting of the Cabinet's "Battle of the Atlantic Committee" was on March . Wikipedia. Start of the Battle of the Atlantic Interactive Map. 3. 5. 2. +− . managed to sail the stern miles at 4 knots before meeting 4 British destroyers . British troops landed on Dutch islands of Aruba and Curaçao in the Caribbean Sea. Aug 23, U.» U-Boat War in the Caribbean: Opportunities Lost Submarine, U-boat, Operational, Art, Leadership, World War, Strategy, Battle, Atlantic.
Interwar exercises had proven the idea faulty. The Japanese also adhered to the idea of a fleet submarine, following the doctrine of Mahanand never used their submarines either for close blockade or convoy interdiction.
The submarine was still looked upon by much of the naval world as "dishonourable", compared to the prestige attached to capital ships. This was true in the Kriegsmarine as well; Raeder successfully lobbied for the money to be spent on capital ships instead.
Battle of the Caribbean
The Royal Navy's main anti-submarine weapon before the war was the inshore patrol craft, which was fitted with hydrophones and armed with a small gun and depth charges. The Royal Navy, like most, had not considered anti-submarine warfare as a tactical subject during the s and s. Unrestricted submarine warfare had been outlawed by the London Naval Treaty ; anti-submarine warfare was seen as 'defensive' rather than dashing; many naval officers believed anti-submarine work was drudgery similar to mine sweeping ; and ASDIC was believed to have rendered submarines impotent.
Although destroyers also carried depth charges, it was expected these ships would be used in fleet actions rather than coastal patrol, so they were not extensively trained in their use. The British, however, ignored the fact that arming merchantmen, as Britain did from the start of the war, removed them from the protection of the "cruiser rules" and the fact that anti-submarine trials with ASDIC had been conducted in ideal conditions.
Britain lost its biggest ally. Inthe French Navy was the fourth largest in the world. Only a handful of French ships joined the Free French Forces and fought against Germany, though these were later joined by a few Canadian-built corvettes. With the French fleet removed from the campaign, the Royal Navy was stretched even further.
Italy's declaration of war meant that Britain also had to reinforce the Mediterranean Fleet and establish a new group at Gibraltarknown as Force Hto replace the French fleet in the Western Mediterranean.The Second World War: The War in the Pacific
The U-boats gained direct access to the Atlantic. Since the English Channel was relatively shallow, and was partially blocked with minefields by mid, U-boats were ordered not to negotiate it and instead travel around the British Isles to reach the most profitable hunting grounds. This greatly improved the situation for U-boats in the Atlantic, enabling them to attack convoys further west and letting them spend longer time on patrol, doubling the effective size of the U-boat force.
The Germans later built huge fortified concrete submarine pens for the U-boats in the French Atlantic bases, which were impervious to Allied bombing until mid when the Tallboy bomb became available. From early July, U-boats returned to the new French bases when they had completed their Atlantic patrols. British destroyers were diverted from the Atlantic. Many older destroyers were withdrawn from convoy routes to support the Norwegian campaign in April and May and then diverted to the English Channel to support the withdrawal from Dunkirk.
By the summer ofBritain faced a serious threat of invasion.
Soldiers of the Caribbean: Britain's forgotten war heroes
Many destroyers were held in the Channel, ready to repel a German invasion. The German submarine base in Lorient, Brittany The completion of Hitler's campaign in Western Europe meant U-boats withdrawn from the Atlantic for the Norwegian campaign now returned to the war on trade.
So at the very time the number of U-boats on patrol in the Atlantic began to increase, the number of escorts available for the convoys was greatly reduced. After the German occupation of Denmark and Norway, Britain occupied Iceland and the Faroe Islandsestablishing bases there and preventing a German takeover.
It was in these circumstances that Winston Churchill, who had become Prime Minister on 10 Mayfirst wrote to President Franklin Roosevelt to request the loan of fifty obsolescent US Navy destroyers.
This eventually led to the " Destroyers for Bases Agreement " effectively a sale but portrayed as a loan for political reasonswhich operated in exchange for year leases on certain British bases in NewfoundlandBermuda and the West Indiesa financially advantageous bargain for the United States but militarily beneficial for Britain, since it effectively freed up British military assets to return to Europe. Kennedy believed that Britain and its allies might actually lose. The first of these destroyers were only taken over by their British and Canadian crews in September, and all needed to be rearmed and fitted with ASDIC.
It was to be many months before these ships contributed to the campaign. First Happy Time A U-boat shells a merchant ship which has remained afloat after being torpedoed. The early U-boat operations from the French bases were spectacularly successful. U-boat crews became heroes in Germany. From June until Octoberover Allied ships were sunk: The Germans had a handful of very long-range Focke-Wulf Fw Condor aircraft based at Bordeaux and Stavangerwhich were used for reconnaissance.
Due to ongoing friction between the Luftwaffe and Kriegsmarine, the primary source of convoy sightings was the U-boats themselves. Since a submarine's bridge was very close to the water, their range of visual detection was quite limited.
The best source proved to be the codebreakers of B-Dienst who had succeeded in deciphering the British Naval Cypher No. In response, the British applied the techniques of operations research to the problem and came up with some counter-intuitive solutions for protecting convoys.
They realised that the area of a convoy increased by the square of its perimeter, meaning the same number of ships, using the same number of escorts, was better protected in one convoy than in two.
A large convoy was as difficult to locate as a small one. Moreover, reduced frequency also reduced the chances of detection, as fewer large convoys could carry the same amount of cargo, while large convoys take longer to assemble.
Therefore, a few large convoys with apparently few escorts were safer than many small convoys with a higher ratio of escorts to merchantmen.
World War II for Kids: Battle of the Atlantic
Instead of attacking the Allied convoys singly, U-boats were directed to work in wolf packs Rudel coordinated by radio. The boats spread out into a long patrol line that bisected the path of the Allied convoy routes. Once in position, the crew studied the horizon through binoculars looking for masts or smoke, or used hydrophones to pick up propeller noises. United Kingdom Government Where did it take place? The Battle of the Atlantic took place throughout the northern region of the Atlantic Ocean.
Battle of the Atlantic - Wikipedia
Once the United States entered the war the battle spread all the way to the coast the United States and the Caribbean Sea. How long did it last? The battle lasted over 5 years and 8 months from September 3, to May 8, Early Battles The early battles in the Atlantic heavily favored the Germans.
They used their submarines to sneak up on British ships and sink them with torpedoes. The Allies didn't know what to do and lost a lot of ships over the first few years of the war. U-Boats German submarines were called U-boats. This was short for "Unterseeboot", which meant "undersea boat. A German U-boat Surfacing Source: They often had destroyer warships that would help to escort them and defend them from attacks.
For a period of time in this method was fairly effective in helping get many ships through safely to Britain. However, as the Germans built more and more submarines the convoys became less successful. A Convoy Crossing the Atlantic Source: The Germans had a large number of submarines in the Atlantic, but the Allies had broken the German secret codes and had developed new technologies for fighting submarines.
The Allies used radar to tell where the ships were and special new underwater bombs called Hedgehogs that helped to destroy the submarines.