Discussions on all (non-biographical) aspects of the submarine forces of the Kriegsmarine.
- Posts: 101
- Joined: 01 Apr 2005 03:41
- Location: Grafton, North Dakota, USA
Would someone please explain to me what the monsoon u-boats were? Thank you.
- Posts: 403
- Joined: 31 Mar 2003 15:40
- Location: Hamburg, Germany
The Kriegsmarine decides to send U-boats to operate in the Indian Ocean. The first group arrives in the Far East at the end of September 1943, after the tropical monsoon rains period. Thereafter, the group is named "Monsun" (Monsoon).
- Posts: 364
- Joined: 02 Apr 2004 11:18
- Location: Portugal
First Group of U-boats employed in missions in the Far East, so named because their arrival co-incided with the end of the monsoon season.
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- Joined: 14 Feb 2004 13:52
- Location: Barcelona, Catalunya
The Monsun boats
U-boat deployment in the Far East had been reviewed since 1941. However, serious technical and logistic difficulties were encountered. Also, it was considered as an unnecessary diversion from the North Atlantic Tonnage War.
In the second half of 1942 the first wave of boats was sent to the Cape Town area. This was later continued but U-boats always came back to Europe at that time.
From May 1943 onwards a complicated programme of the Italian transports, Japanese movements and so-called Monsun U-boats was carried out. Unlike previous U-boats operating in the Indian Ocean, Monsun boats were to be stationed in the Far East bases provided by the Japanese. Gradually the effort moved from combat missions to transport missions. However, only 4 U-boats out of 14 stationed ever in the Far East managed to reach back Europe.
Mainly German U-boats are described here. Italian submarine transports (so-called Merkator boats) were assigned mainly to transport duties and carried stores for the Monsun bases in the Far East.