In the first eight months of 1942, German submarines sank nearly 400 Allied freighters and tankers along the U.S. Atlantic coast with a loss of more than 5,000 merchant seamen and sailors―twice the number of fatalities at Pearl Harbor. This book helps readers understand the complexities of the long Battle of the Atlantic by examining those disastrous early days of war and following the U-boats into action.
The book traces the voyages of five U-boats to their destinations as they sink twenty-five ships unmolested by the U.S. Navy, which failed to follow through on British intelligence warnings. It also provides a compilation of personal stories from crewmen and officers of U-123 and from the Allied sailors and merchant seamen cast adrift in lifeboats by the U-boat's torpedoes. A bestseller when first published in 1990, it is now back in print as a trade paperback.
Operation Drumbeat (“Paukenschlag”) was launched by the Kriegesmarine immediately following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. German U-boats were sent from bases in France to attack merchant ships in the coastal waters of the United States. In the eight months following Pearl Harbor almost 400 ships were sunk of the US Atlantic coast killing more than 5,000 merchant mariners – more than twice as many as were killed on December 7 in Hawaii.
The astonishing and shocking message of this book is the...
Amazing detail. I had no idea that the U boats sank so many ships off of our shores. A good touch to use U-123 as a focal point with such interesting and critical facts about the captain and his crew. Difficult to believe that our Navy was so inept at dealing with the U boats for so long. Had Hitler sent 20 or more U boats to our shores early in the war, we would have had a major problem. Thank you, Mr. Gannon, for all of your research and for this wonderful book.
Beginning with an apolitical description of the German u-boat navy prior to WW2, its development and deployment in the Atlantic and the tragic consequences of an inept and unprepared outmoded U.S. Navy,,, through the naivete' and politically mismanaged response of the early military leadership...The U.S. experienced losses far greater than at Pearl Harbor. The author takes us on a thrilling excursion in to both sides of the battle in a very balanced presentation of the behind the scenes as well as the in the thick of the encounters. A good read difficult to put down until finished.
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