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German Naval Losses in Norway.

Discussion in 'Surface and Air Forces' started by C.Evans, Mar 25, 2003.

  1. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    Narvik Losses:

    Ships Sunk:

    Heavy Cruiser Blucher.
    Light Cruiser Karlsruhe.
    ............. Konigsberg.
    Gunnery Training Ship Brummer.

    Destroyers Sunk:

    Anton Schmitt.
    Bernd von Arnim.
    Dieter von Roeder.
    Erich Giese.
    Erich Koellner.
    Georg Thiele.
    Hans Ludemann.
    Herman Kunne.
    Wilhelm Heidkamp.
    Wolfgang Zenker.

    U Boats Sunk:

    U 1
    U 13
    U 22
    U 44
    U 49
    U 50
    U 54
    U 64

    Torpedo Boats Sunk:

    Torpedo Boat: Albatros.

    Transports Sunk:

    Antares.
    August Leonhardt.
    Bahia Castillo.
    Buenos Aires.
    Curityba.
    Florida.
    Friedenau.
    Hamm.
    Ionia.
    Kreta.
    Rio-de-Janeiro.
    Rode.
    Wigbert.

    Ships Damaged:

    Pocket Battleship Lutzow.

    Battle Cruiser Gneisenau.

    Scharnhorst.

    Gunnery Training Ship: Bremse.

    Heavy Cruiser: Hipper.

    Light Cruiser: Emden.
     
  2. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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    Carl, the destroyer actions by the British in Narvik where some of the best boys own actions of the war in my view.

    Have read some of the action reports from the crews of various destroyers and although we never want to use the word glorious battles in wars as most of us on this forum know they are not glorious, the actions were inspiring.

    Hms Hotspur.. I hope memory serves me correctly had a grand story to tell...
     
  3. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Early on the morning of April 9, 1940 German forces attacked and captured the strategic iron ore port of Narvik in the neutral nation of Norway. Two thousand alpine troops deployed from eleven destroyers, and supported by a number of disguised merchant vessels, surprised and overwhelmed Norwegian resistance. During the attack the Norwegian coastal defense ships Norge and Eidsvold were sunk with the loss of 276 lives.

    The British responded the following morning with an attack by destroyers Hardy, Havock, Hostile, Hotspur, and Hunter. The ensuing battle left Narvik harbor a graveyard of ships. The Germans lost the destroyers Wilhelm Heidkamp and Anton Schmitt, and the merchant vessels Jan Wellem, Ravensfeld, Neuenfels, Aachen, Altona, Hein Hoyer, Bockenheim, Martha Hendrick Fisser, and Frielinghaus. The British lost the Hardy and Hunter.

    On April 13th the British return with a stronger force led by the Battleship HMS Warspite. By the end of the day the German naval forces had been decimated. All of the remaining destroyers had been sunk or run aground and several more merchant ships had been sunk.

    And including pics:

    http://pweb.interquest.de/~boring/narvik/narvik-historical.html
     
  4. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Some data on battle of Norway:

    On April 8th, one of the destroyers, HMS Glowworm , met the Hipper and was severely damaged. With tremendous courage, her captain used his doomed ship to ram the Hipper, radioing as he did so that the German Fleet was at sea.

    As a result, the British Admiralty did exactly what the Germans hoped it would do by instructing Admiral Forbes not to follow the German fleet into Trondheim, which would have been tactically sound, but to intercept the Scharnhorst and Gneisenau , which were operating as an independent battle squadron, and were in fact functioning as bait to keep the Royal Navy away from the landings in Norway. By the evening of April 9th, Germany was in control of the most important strategic positions in Norway and Denmark, and Hitler had achieved his easiest bridgehead yet. In Britain, Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, who only days earlier had announced that Hitler had missed the bus, was in deep trouble.

    On April 10th, the First Battle of Narvik brought five British destroyers into conflict with 10 German destroyers, and cost each side two destroyers and one senior commander. The Royal Navy also sank eight German merchant ships and the ammunition carrier Rauenfels . On the 11th, the RAF attacked Sola airfield, Stavanger, and lost one Wellington out of six. On the 13th came the Second Battle of Narvik, and a significant victory for the Royal Navy. HMS Warspite and nine destroyers attacked eight German destroyers and sank or disabled all of them. By the 14th, the British North Western Expeditionary Force had begun to land at Harstad, the 24th Guards Brigade arriving on the island of Hinnoy, near Harstad, some 96km from Narvik, and separated from the port by a sea channel and snow-covered mountains, on the 15th. On the 16th, the 146th Infantry Brigade landed at Namsos, and on the 17th the 148th landed at Andalsnes. The Germans were now isolated in Narvik, although with plenty of captured Norwegian weapons in addition to their own, and with a "Mountain Marine" unit of 2,600 men, survivors of the annihilated destroyer fleet, to use the Norwegian rifles and machine guns. This force was ordered to "hold out for as long as possible".

    On the 19th, the British 146th Infantry Brigade, advancing South from Namsos, reached Verdal, 80km from Trondheim, and the French Chasseurs Alpins - fully trained mountain troops - landed at Namsos. The plan was that these forces would advance on Trondheim and link up with the Norwegian forces retreating northwards, but the arrival of substantial reinforcements for General von Falkenhorst's army, despite the attempt at a blockade of German shipping by Allied submarines in the Skaggerak, made the Allies look again at the weaknesses of their position.

    Allied efforts were now concentrated on Narvik, and the blocking of the vital route for iron resources through the port. British and French troops withdrew from Andalsnes and Namsos, King Haakon and General Ruge (and the Norwegian gold reserves) headed for Tromso, and the final phase of the Norwegian battle began on April 26th. It lasted effectively until May 28th, when the French 13th Foreign Legion Demi-Brigade finally recaptured Narvik, although by then other events in the Low Countries and France had captured the news. The Germans expected the Allies to try to make their stay in Narvik permanent - but on June 7th the French and British departed, having covered the evacuation of the Allied armies from Norway.

    http://www.what-if-you.com/ww2memorial/wwii__chapter_3.htm
     
  5. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    HMS Glowworm, burning severely after receiving hits from the mighty Admiral Hipper, is depicted turning to begin her heroic sacrifice off the Norwegian coast on 8th April 1940. Hugely out-gunned and already crippled, Glowworm's captain, Lieutenant-Commander Roope rammed his destroyer into the side of the Admiral Hipper, inflicting a 40 metre rip in its armour belt before drifting away and exploding. 38 (?) British sailors were rescued from the sea and Roope was awarded a posthumous VC for his bravery, the first earned by the Royal Navy in WWII.

    --------

    8:50 „Hans Lüdemann“ reports contact with a canadian destroyer wrongly identified as „Restigouche“.(„Glowworm“) „Hans Lüdemann“ identifies itself as swedish destroyer „Goeteborg“ and steams away.

    “Glowworm” fires a savlo after the german destroyer at 80hm distance without success.

    At 9:00 the „Bernd von Arnim“ spots again the british destroyer „Glowworm“ which had fallen behind the destroyer force assigned to mine the West Fjord entrance.

    02:02 “BvA” opens fire at “Glowworm”

    „Hipper“ turns around to help „Bernd von Arnim“

    9:57 „Admiral Hipper“ fires the first rounds.

    10:13 Heavily damaged the „Glowworm“ rams „Hipper“ opening the hull 40m wide.

    „Glowworm“ sinks at 10:24 with loss of 111 men.

    The 31 (?) survivors are rescued by „Admiral Hipper“

    http://www.geocities.com/chrisawender/1940/april/8april40see.html

    -------

    [​IMG]

    Admiral Hipper with HMS Glowworm crossing her bow

    http://www.warships1.com/GERca05_AHipper_pics.htm
     
  6. urqh

    urqh Tea drinking surrender monkey

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  7. Friedrich

    Friedrich Expert

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    Well, as we all know, the battle for Norway was an extremely intrepid and difficult one. The German posibilities of achieving something were very few, but the Führer's idea of invading Norway from the air and with fast war ships worked, thanks to the effectiveness of Student's and Dietl's troops, even if the Kriegsmarine was severely damaged. This is one of the ocassions that show that the Führer was no dump.
     
  8. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    Hi Urgh--sorry I hadnt seen your reply sooner on this thread. I have to agree with you and, if you dont mind--I would like to hear more of those after action reports when you have the time.

    Thanks for the great info and sites Kai--ill have to wait till tomorrow to be able to look.
     
  9. augustorm

    augustorm recruit

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    I am new and wondering...where are the locations of all these vessels...I would like to dive them if the depth permits. Thanks in advance
     
  10. RAM

    RAM Member

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    Carl's list is not complete, there are many more WWII wrecks along the Norwegian coast.
    However, depth is not the only limitation. Many of these wrecks are classified as war graves and unauthorized diving is not allowed neither on the wreck nor in the vincinity.
    You better check this first, otherwise it could turn out to be a rather expensive adventure if you get caught.

    Below you will find some maps with more wrecks.
     

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  11. hucks216

    hucks216 Member

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    For those interested in the Naval side of the Norwegian Campaign then these two volumes by Geirr H Haarr are 'must reads' - the land campaign is tied into the narrative to give a well rounded history. All sides are treated in an unbiased manner and all aspects of the Naval aspects are covered. The narrative is interspersed with some great, and rarely seen, photos. Personally I don't think there are better books covering the subject...

    The German Invasion Of Norway April 1940 (Vol 1) - The German Invasion of Norway: April 1940: Amazon.co.uk: Geirr H. Haarr: Books

    The Battle For Norway April - June 1940 (Vol 2) - The Battle for Norway April - June 1940: Amazon.co.uk: Geirr H. Haarr: Books
     

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  12. Carl W Schwamberger

    Carl W Schwamberger Ace

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    Theres a WI. Had the Brits got stubborn at Narvik & forced the Germans to fight for it.
     
  13. elk

    elk recruit

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    I would add tankers Kattegat and Skagerrak to the list. Non arrival of the former was the main reason the 10 destroyers were trapped in Narvik.
     
  14. Hufflepuff

    Hufflepuff Semi-Frightening Mountain Goat

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    Read about this one in another post on U-Boats; apparently the only submerged sub on submerged sub kill of the war happened off the coast of Norway when U-864 (? number right?) was torpedoed by the British sub Venturer. Interesting side note.
     
  15. merdiolu

    merdiolu Member

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    That was towards at the end of war 1945.

    There is one unintended consquence of German naval losses in Norwegian Camaign. Most of Kriegsmarine surface fleet was either sunk or badly damaged. Compared with losses in North Atantic that far (like Graf-Spee) or North Sea prior to invasion of Norway Germans shelved all big scale amphibious invasion operations (like Sea Lion) for the remainder of war.
     
  16. green slime

    green slime Member

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    That depends on your qualifications and experience. Blücher is at 64m depth, which is within easy reach for qualified technical divers on special gas mixtures, but well beyond anything a PADI certificate would allow. Diving in Norwegian waters requires a drysuit, as the water is bitterly cold all year round. Below 10 ft (3m) its never warmer than 5 degrees Centigrade. Add in silt, and it really does require a lot of experience, planning, and equipment to do safely.

    Not saying it can't be done, but it's more of a serious expedition, than your average resort scuba diver is either prepared for, or willing to invest in. IMO, Given the amount of discomfort (cold, dark, stress), the duration of the entire dive (measured in hours), compared to the amount of bottom time (measured in minutes), even given the special decompression mixtures, it just isn't worth the effort or the risk.

    If it's on your bucketlist, however, it is doable, and others have done it.
     
  17. TiredOldSoldier

    TiredOldSoldier Ace

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    It didn't prevent Crete, Leros, the capture of the Channel islands, and a number of anphibious ops in the Baltic, the Norwegian losses were not critical to Sealion, though they didn't help, the Luftwaffe's failure to achieve air superiority was.

    The Germans in WW1 and WW2 had possibly a better track record than the British that had one big failure in each (Gallipoli and Dieppe) and a number of smaller ones like Castelrosso and Tobruk while the Germans suceeded in almost all they attempted though they often paid a high price due to naval inferiority. The WW1 operation albion makes an interesting contrast to the Gallipoli fiasco.
     
  18. green slime

    green slime Member

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    If you really are serious, I'd suggest checking out http://www.dykarna.nu/forum/ and the lads there'll point you in the right direction. Don't be intimidated by all the scandinavian language: Most speak very decent English, so if you pose a question in English, explain your circumstances, you'll be sure to get an answer in English.

    There were a couple of guys there that have dived the Blücher.

    There is a B-17G you can dive with a PADI advanced or BASC equivalent inbetween the island of Öland and Sweden:

    http://www.dykarna.nu/dykplatser/b17-flygplan-b17-369.html
     
  19. merdiolu

    merdiolu Member

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    In Channel Islands (1940) there was no resistance. They were abandoned and defenseless due to close proximity to French shores

    Operation Merkur Invasion of Crete in May 1941 was largely an airborne airlift operation. Capture of Malame airfield and airlift of 5th German Alpine Mountain Division to there plus air superiority of Luftwaffe 11th Air Fleet over Aegean tipped the scales back to Germans favour. Actually seaborne leg of Crete invasion was a fiasco for Germans. A convoy of captured Greek caiuques and fishing boats sailed from Greece to land on Crete but it was routed by British Mediterranean Fleet. Later Luftwaffe sank several Royal Navy vessels but couldn't protect seaborne assets of invasion. Both Kriegsmarine and Lufwaffe acted uncoordinated just like most other operations.

    Same as Kos and Leros (Dordonecesse Campaign in 1943) Due to Churchill's ignorance and insistance British tried to operate and defend both islands which were out of Allied aircover either from Syria or Cyprus and paid for it. Both places were under Luftwaffe range though. In both islands German airborne elements were also heavily used with seaborne landings (again a collection of caiuqes not the best vehicles to land heavily defended shores used ) and Italian garrisons although fought well were demoralized especially under constant Luftwaffe air raids. Italians also did not defend shores of these islands and hold higher grounds. Once Germans landed in successive waves garrisons both from air and sea in both Kos and Leros Italian British garrisons were doomed especially when they were cut from sea under Luftwaffe threat.

    In none of these operations capital ships or surface vessels of Kriegsmarine were used because

    a) they were not required
    b) they were unavailable (just like prior to Sea Lion)

    Sealion was a different matter. To transport at least two fields armies of Wehrmacht over Channel to British coast Germans would need every asset they had including capital ships and other combat vessels to escort landing force , to carry it , to deceive enemy about landing site and to intercept and repulse a certain Royal Navy counter attack and to support beachhead with additional naval gunfire. Actually they didn't have enough vessels to accomplish Sea Lion even before Norwegian Campaign. Losses in there especially losing half of the available German destroyers in Narvik reinforced that fact on minds of German admirals.
     
  20. roscoe

    roscoe Member

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    Just been reading David Irving's CHURCHILL'S WAR

    Just to give you a feel for the book with regard to the Norwegian Campaign here's a quote:

    Churchill was First Lord of the Admiralty at the time. Yet to become PM. Churchill had ordered Forbes to go swanning about in a heavy sea to look for the German Fleet whilst they could have caught the Germans knapping disembarking in the Fjords. Fact is the First Lord of the Admiralty, Churchill was drunk for most of the Norwegian Campaign.

    Churchill, who was drunk most of time, was 90% to blame for the Norwegian debacle. Telegrams were stacking up describing German troop landings whilst he was getting drunk with Hoare and Stanley. The Norwegian debacle incredibly cost Chamberlain his job and put Churchill as PM.

    Churchill is admired for his speeches. Bet you didn't know that most of the time his radio broadcasts were done by an actor because Churchill's speech was too slurred having sunk several bottles of Brandy. The Admiralty performed much better when Churchill was out of the way sleeping it off.

    It's time the true story about Churchill was told.
     

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