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Friday, January 28, 2011

MY FAMOUS GRANDFATHER


My Grandfather's next command, The Prince Of Wales, on which he took Churchill To meet FDR at Augusta Bay in 1942.  She was sunk later that year off Malaya by the Japanese.   By then he was fighting on the Malta Convoys. 




This is an extract of an account of the day after HMS Hood was sunk in the North Atlantic in July 1941.  Blogging this was prompted by the discussion on Political Betting where people seemed to think that a maritime reconnaissance capability was unnecessary.  I was saying that Nimrod should kept until its replacement is operational, not scrapped.


The Rear-Admiral Commanding, Second Cruiser Squadron, with his force proceeded at 28 knots on the course which would bring him soonest within 100 miles. He hoped to get near enough to launch the attack by 2100, but a short engagement with Prince of Wales caused the enemy to make ground to the westward; and became apparent that the Victorious could not be within 100 miles of them before 2300. The Rear-Admiral Commanding, Second Cruiser Squadron, therefore ordered the striking force to be flown off at 2200, some 120 miles from the objective.
35. The Victorious had only just commissioned. She was about to carry a large consignment of crated Hurricanes to Gibraltar, there to be assembled and flown to Malta, when she was put under my command for this operation. The only operational aircraft she had on board were nine Swordfish of 825 and six Fulmars of 820 Squadron. She had only had a week to work up and the Fulmar crews were far from fully trained.


A swordfish.  Bismark's air defences were not calibrated to deal with such slow aircraft.

The Commanding Officer had decided that nothing less than the whole of 825 Squadron could be expected to produce any result in a torpedo attack. He realised that the Fulmars were far from ideal for shadowing, but decided to use them to maintain touch, in the hope of being able to launch another torpedo attack in the morning.
36. The nine Swordfish were flown off at 2210, followed at 2300 by three Fulmars and at 0100 by two more as reliefs. The weather was showery with squalls; wind north-westerly, fresh; visibility good, except during showers. Sunset was at 0052.
7. 825 Squadron, by very good navigation and with the assistance of the ASV, located the Bismarck at 2330 and altered to the southward with the object of making their attack from ahead. The cloud was increasing and they lost touch, but after circling round for some time located the Norfolk and Prince of Wales and were redirected by the former. A few minutes later the ASV gear again indicated a ship and the squadron broke cloud to deliver their attack, only to find themselves over a United states Coastguard cutter. The Bismarck was six miles away and, observing this incident, opened H.A. barrage fire, keeping it up throughout the attack. Eight aircraft got in their attacks, the ninth losing touch in a cloud layer and failing to find the target. At least one hit was obtained.
38. This attack, by a squadron so lately embarked in a new carrier, unfavourable weather conditions, was magnificently carried out and reflects the greatest credit on all concerned. There can be little doubt that the hit was largely responsible for the Bismarck being finally brought to action and sunk. The value of ASV was once more demonstrated; without it, it is doubtful whether any attack would have been possible.
The Rear Admiral commanding the second cruiser squadron was my grandfather.

The extract came from HMS Hood Association website
My PB Comment 128.  In reply to - Against countries such as China and Russia the UK would be helpless.
The primary threat we could face in future could be from a country we have come to regard as an ally.

If the US is subjected to Martial Law under the Patriot Acts, and the camps are filled with political opponents, racial and social 'undesirables', and Congress emasculated, the OWG will wish to export its totalitarian agenda from the USA to other parts of the world.
Britain might have to face up to a hostile USA in these circumstances, if we were to attempt to preserve our democratic existence - with the Nazis coming from the opposite direction on this occasion.

The Germans could be our allies.

5 comments:

Atlas shrugged said...

My advice is this.

Why would we wish to fight for our nation or freedom, when our nation and our freedom already either no longer exists, or will no longer exist in the future whichever shaped eyes our repressors have.

The Chinese can have this place for all I care, gift wrapped if required.

Indeed, find me a Chinese back-side to kiss, and I will gladly kiss it. None of our cars, TV's, mobile phones, PC's and a whole lot more, would either work or exist at all without the Chinese.

Whatever the Chinese do, it can hardly be much, if any worse then what our own establishment are doing to us. Even if it were, at least we would know our enemy, in stead of only guessing.

On the other hand if some of you people wish to fight and die for the interests of your own slave owners, then that is your choice. Just count me out this time, and my 3 sons, if I have anything to do with it.

Stuart Fairney said...

Tap, wiki tells me Duke of York was decommissioned in 1951?

Tapestry said...

That's right Stuart. It was The Prince Of wales!! Mother was jabbering the whole time I was writing in great excitement, when I came in after long day, getting out my father's diaries etc!

Tapestry said...

Atlas if you undo your defensive capability, you invite war.

No parent wants their sons to go to war. But in the end of the day, it is the sons and daughters that choose what they think is important, not the parents.

If America loses its internal battle with Nazism, as you believe is inevitable, then there will be evil consequences as the programme spreads.

The process is at root corporatist, and designed to make money. They are not highly committed to fighting wars and have had far more trouble with the military part of their programmes than they like, or expected to have. To that fact Hugo Chavez owes the survival of his regime.

There is no admiration for politicians in America and leadership. rather the contrary. How woill they motivate their own armed forces to fight effectively to build their empire. They do have weak points, and their fear is growing as the legal threat to the conspirators grow, and politics swings against them.

If you surrender before the fight, the lives of children are more at threat, not less. Don't throw your freedom away. Treasure it.

Stuart Fairney said...

Oddly enough, my old man was on HMS Repulse which sailed along with HMS Prince of Wales. He was quite impressessed by Captain Tennant's handling of the ship as were many of the survivors. He used to tell quite a tale of the action after a few drinks, albeit he would never talk about it when sober.