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Battle of the River Plate

Article about: I daresay that very problem weighed heavily with him, he didnt really have an effective advantage with so many of his weapons out of commission, low on ammo, fuel system suspect, his galleys

  1. #21

    Default Re: Battle of the River Plate

    I think capt.dove was not the only brit to go.also I understood that hitler ordered her scuttled.

  2. #22

    Default Re: Battle of the River Plate

    'Graf Spree' was not a capital ship (battleship or battlecruiser or large aircraft carrier)-she was a heavy cruiser by armour thickness and tonnage, rated as a 'Panzer Kreuzer' by the German navy-the British press had described her and her sisters as 'pocket battleships' but they were really slow, over armed cruisers, vulnerable to 6 and especially 8 inch gunned ships-the 11 inch guns were slow firing and thus slow to aquire targets against the RN tactics of having 2 groups of ships close to attack from different directions then withdraw forcing the 'Graf Spree' to switch targets. In addition she was sent out just before the war broke out on station when she had been due for a major refit, meaning her engines were not fully reliable for such a mission. Much had been expected of the KM surface raiders but the reality was that the converted merchant raiders were far more cost effective than the big ships of the navy.

  3. #23

    Default Re: Battle of the River Plate

    Quote by harryamb2 View Post
    I think capt.dove was not the only brit to go.also I understood that hitler ordered her scuttled.
    You are correct Harry

    Nick
    "In all my years as a soldier, I have never seen men fight so hard." - SS Obergruppenfuhrer Wilhelm Bittrich - Arnhem

  4. #24
    ?

    Default Re: Battle of the River Plate

    Langsdorf conferred with commanders in Berlin and was given options as to his further actions, it was his decision to scuttle the ship and not Hitlers, who would of demanded a fight to the finish, I suspect that KM Fleet command gave him the options although advised that scuttling was a last resort because of the propoganda that could result, and the disgrace that would be attributed to him and his crew, hence his decision for suicide, in doing that any retribution against his officers and crew was averted, which seemed to satisfy the high command . It seemed that if a commander fell on his sword so to speak, that was deemed acceptable during that period .

  5. #25

    Default Re: Battle of the River Plate

    I was under the impression Hitler didnt want the ship taken in tact by the pro British Uruguayans so he ordred the ship scuttled as it was clear to him that Langsdorff was not going to make a fight of it

    Nick
    "In all my years as a soldier, I have never seen men fight so hard." - SS Obergruppenfuhrer Wilhelm Bittrich - Arnhem

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