Seelöwe: German Air Operations and anti-ship Capabilities

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Walter_Warlimont
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I Found This Page To A Website

Post by Walter_Warlimont » 09 Aug 2007 14:38

Unfortunately, it is in French. Since I can't read French, I posted the page in The ACG Forum, hoping to find someone who could translate it for me.

Below the link, you will find a brief translation of what the page says.

http://dkepaves.free.fr/html/emile_deschamps.htm
Joea wrote:I can give a quick summary:

Emile Deschamps was a French trawler sunk on the 4th of June 1940 (is this Sealion related - d'oh dumb question).

-Launched 1922 at Nantes for "Compagnie Normande de navigation à vapeur"

-Requisitioned 1939 and took part in Operation Dynamo during which she transported 500 men from Dunkirk. She was 6 miles from North Foreland at the mouth of the Thames (lots of fog) behind a Brit minesweeper when the boat blew up after apparently hitting a mine. Sank in 10 seconds and only about 100 or so survived. The 243rd ship sunk during Dynamo.
Below is a Link to The Translation itself, just so you don't think I am making it up.

Hopefully, this can put this Dunkirk Question to rest.

http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forums/s ... hp?t=54288

RichTO90
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Re: I Found This Page To A Website

Post by RichTO90 » 09 Aug 2007 15:09

Walter_Warlimont wrote:Hopefully, this can put this Dunkirk Question to rest.

http://www.armchairgeneral.com/forums/s ... hp?t=54288
Walter, I'm sorry, but no it doesn't, it is simply yet another unsourced remark for "243"....or is it ""234"? Emile Duchamps may have been the "last" sunk at Dunkirk, since it evidently went down after the last blockship was purposely sunk, but there is nothing to say that it was the "243rd" except that the number "243"....or "234" is endlessly and incestously repeated without a single shred of attribution not on the order of "someone else said it." Frankly, numbers like that seem to have an impervious, mythic status....such as the "hundreds of Tigers" at Prohkorovka and the "300" or "312" or whatever German tank losses there. And when you actually dig into such numbers you usually find they do have a basis in reality, but often have no relationship to what they are attributed to.

Now, in this case I have shown over and over the actual loss reports, by name, of every naval and merchant vessel reported lost or damaged at Dunkirk, including British, French, and Belgian vessels. I have also given the total reported number of vessels lost in all waters for the entire months of May and June and the numbers still don't fit. I have begged someone, anyone to tell me what, where, and when the additional lost and damaged vessels were. And yet, curiously enough, it seems that whenever I ask a question like that I get met with silence? Or baldfaced repetitions of unproven - or even worse, false or discredited - factoids, numbers or opinions that have been conclusively shown to be wrong, such as the "British withdrew destroyers from Dunkirk"? Thus, yet again, my heartburn and ire with some posters.

I have gone through Ramsey's dispatch and the Royal Navy day by day and cannot find any evidence of any other vessels, bigger than the 11-13.5 ton LCA that were lost. Which leads me to conclude that if - and I think it remains a big if - that number acctually does relate directly to losses at Dunkirk, then the "additional" "losses" must have been unremarkable small craft, the "little ships" of Dunkirk legend.

Further, none of this affects the central question - the effectiveness of Luftwaffe antiship operations - since the very complete figures for losses to bombing show that it accounted for a little more than 50 percent of the total losses and that although it accounted for a higher percentage of those damaged, the damaged was frequently minor and had little or no effect on the ships seaworthness or combat effectiveness.

But, if you like, I will "put to rest" one thing, I think that more say 243 than say 234. :roll:

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Post by Walter_Warlimont » 09 Aug 2007 15:22

Rich wrote:Now, in this case I have shown over and over the actual loss reports, by name, of every naval and merchant vessel reported lost or damaged at Dunkirk, including British, French, and Belgian vessels. I have also given the total reported number of vessels lost in all waters for the entire months of May and June and the numbers still don't fit. I have begged someone, anyone to tell me what, where, and when the additional lost and damaged vessels were. And yet, curiously enough, it seems that whenever I ask a question like that I get met with silence? Or baldfaced repetitions of unproven - or even worse, false or discredited - factoids, numbers or opinions that have been conclusively shown to be wrong, such as the "British withdrew destroyers from Dunkirk"? Thus, yet again, my heartburn and ire with some posters.
Actually, all you have done is find the loss reports that YOU can find.

I went hunting for the Emile Deschamps & when I find evidence that it actually was the 243rd Vessel lost at Dunkirk, you dismiss it because it doesn't jive with your findings.

And not only was it the 243rd Vessel lost in the Dunkirk Evacuation, but it was the Last vessel lost at Dunkirk as well.

RichTO90
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Post by RichTO90 » 09 Aug 2007 16:38

Walter_Warlimont wrote:Actually, all you have done is find the loss reports that YOU can find.
No Walter, I have found the loss reports and I have both summarized them and shown YOU where you can find them yourself. You seem to fail to understand that the burden upon you is to show that there are in fact losses that can be shown to be the "missing" ones in the accounting.
I went hunting for the Emile Deschamps & when I find evidence that it actually was the 243rd Vessel lost at Dunkirk, you dismiss it because it doesn't jive with your findings.
There seems to be an intellectiual disconnect here, you seem to think I am disputing that the Emile Deschamps was the last vessel or that I am disputing that many have said it was the "243rd" or the "234th"? Note of course the problematic nature of the basic figures, is it 234 or 243, you can easily "prove" either one if your "proof" is that "someone else said it."

But I am not. I am simply asking why when the records painstakingly account for every vessels loss from steamships up to 8,000 GRT to small landing craft of under 13.5 tons and even fishing vessels as small as 9 GRT do they somehow miss the loss of 135 to 144 vessels (in this case even including the blockships sunk, which was a deliberate act)?

For one thing, they cannot be naval vessels, those are very well accounted for. Nor I think could they be significant civilian merchant vessels, the average size of those lost was over 1,000 GRT and I think an additional 135,000 to 144,000 GRT lost might have been noticed?

So then, what are the alternatives?

1) You can assume that nobody noticed or recorded the loss of an additional 135-144 ships?
2) You can assume that an addtional 135-144 "vessels" were lost, but they were all less signficant than 9 GRT fishing vessels.
3) You can assume that the commonly quoted figures of "135-144" are a misapprehension that includes losses unrelated to the Dunkirk evacuation, for example losses at Boulogne, Calais, Le Havre, Cherbourg, in the Channel, and even possibly in the Narvik evacuation, that were contemporaneous with Dunkirk, but weren't really part of the losses in the evacuation. (This is actually very common and often occurs in historical "overviews".)
4) You can assume that the effect was caused by a combination of 2) and 3), which is rather what I suspect (although I'll continue searching for the exact answer).
5) You can accept without question "234" or "243" since "X, Y, and Z said so", which is "reasoning" by faith rather than by a critical scientific method. I have several problems with that, but then am an atheistic secular humanist (and also BTW, a Goldwater Republican - few of us left :D ), so have a problem with all faith-based "reasoning".

I am unsure why you are having a problem understanding these points and their significance?
And not only was it the 243rd Vessel lost in the Dunkirk Evacuation, but it was the Last vessel lost at Dunkirk as well.
I'm not really sure why you think that is so significant? And I could actually ask then, if the Germans recovered a vessel at Dunkirk, and repaired and used it themselves, as they in fact did, and then it was later lost by them, wouldn't that actually be the last vessel lost at Dunkirk? :lol:

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Andy H
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Post by Andy H » 09 Aug 2007 17:42

Operation Dynamo-Summary of British and Allied ships employed, British ships lost or damaged

AA Cruiser 1 (Employed) / 0 (Lost by enemy action/ 0 (Lost by other causes)/ 0 (Damaged-British only)
Destroyers and TB’s : 56/9/0/19
Sloops & Despatch vessels: 6/0/0/1
Patrol Vessels:7/0/0/0
Gunboats:2/1/0/0
Corvettes or Chasseurs:11/0/0/0
Minesweepers Large:38/5/1/7
Trawlers & Drifters:230/23/6/2
Special Service Vessels:3/0/0/0
Armed Boarding Vessels:3/1/0/0
MTB’s & A/SB’s:15/0/0/0
Schuyts:40/1/3/0
Yachts:27/1/2/0
Personnel Vessels:45/9/0/8
Hospital Carriers:8/1/0/5
Cargo ships:13/3/0/0
Tugs:40/6/1/0
Landing Craft:13/1/7/0
Lighters/Hoppers & Barges:48/4/8/0
Small Craft*** (Naval motor boats,War Dept launches, private motor boats, RNLI Lifeboats)
242/7/135/?

Total:848/72/163/45
*** -The numbers of small craft taking part were probably greater than these figures and the losses of small craft as well

Source:Appendix L The War at Sea Vol I by Roskill

Regards

Andy H

RichTO90
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Post by RichTO90 » 09 Aug 2007 19:09

Andy H wrote:Source:Appendix L The War at Sea Vol I by Roskill

Regards

Andy H
Du-uh! Thanks Andy, I forgot to check Roskill. :oops:

And I rather suspect that this table may in fact be the ur-source for the "243", "234", "over 200 sunk and about the same number damaged" figures often quoted. Note that a comparison of Roskill's/My counts are:

Destroyers and TB’s 9/9
Gunboats 1/1
Special Service Vessels (blockships, he counts 3, but not of course as "lost" since it was intentional, I count 5)
Armed Boarding Vessels 1/1
Tugs 7/7
Landing Craft 8/8

Steamers probably included:
Personnel Vessels 9
Hospital Carriers 1
Cargo ships 3
Total 13/18 (I included the hospital ship in this category)

His:
Minesweepers Large 6
Trawlers & Drifters 29
Schuyts 4
Yachts 3
Lighters/Hoppers & Barges 12
Total 54/versus
My:
1 Auxiliary AA Vessel (possibly counted as a "personnel vessel"?)
14 minesweepers (not sure which were "large"?)
3 ASW trawlers
4 fishing trawlers
2 miscellaneous vessels
4 fishing boats
18 drifters and sailing barges
4 canal motor boats
Total 50

Grand Total 96/99

Plus 142 small craft lost (7 to the enemy and 135 to other causes - I suspect with a lot lost to abandonment and collisions)

Which is either "238" or "241" vessels of all types lost to all causes. Mess about a bit with the blockships and other details and it begins to look very similar to "234" or "243".

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Post by Walter_Warlimont » 09 Aug 2007 20:16

Here Rich, Have a Gander At This Link:

http://www.adls.org.uk/shiplist.cfm?RestTrust=0

RichTO90
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Post by RichTO90 » 09 Aug 2007 20:42

RichTO90 wrote:Which is either "238" or "241" vessels of all types lost to all causes. Mess about a bit with the blockships and other details and it begins to look very similar to "234" or "243".
BTW, I just noticed one other interesting thing about Roskill's figures. His number "employed", which is "848", I have seen quoted at least once as being the total number of vessels sunk and damaged at Dunkirk :lol: - I'll have to see if I can track down again which reference it was.

Andreas
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Post by Andreas » 11 Aug 2007 10:17

I have merged two threads, and cleaned up a bit.

All the best

Andreas

Andreas
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Post by Andreas » 13 Aug 2007 10:11

A very nice picture of a Hunt 2 destroyer with all guns in HA position and the 4x2pdr pompom just about visible is on the frontpage of this site:

http://www.world-war.co.uk/

All the best

Andreas

RichTO90
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Post by RichTO90 » 13 Aug 2007 15:14

Andreas wrote:A very nice picture of a Hunt 2 destroyer with all guns in HA position and the 4x2pdr pompom just about visible is on the frontpage of this site:

http://www.world-war.co.uk/

All the best

Andreas
You mean the one of HMS Farndale? But to be fair, the Hunt II were all - AFAIK - commissioned in 1941? Which means that the Hunts in 1940 were the less stable Hunt I-class.

The problems with British shipboard AA capability has only been alluded to in these threads and was a major problem. It was probably a good thing for them that Luftwaffe antiship capabilities was so low. The 2-pdr Pom-Pom was marginal at best versus modern aircraft and the fleet destroyers with single 4-inch as high altitude AA defense had to rely on speed and maneuverability to survive.

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Post by Andreas » 13 Aug 2007 15:26

RichTO90 wrote:
Andreas wrote:A very nice picture of a Hunt 2 destroyer with all guns in HA position and the 4x2pdr pompom just about visible is on the frontpage of this site:

http://www.world-war.co.uk/

All the best

Andreas
You mean the one of HMS Farndale? But to be fair, the Hunt II were all - AFAIK - commissioned in 1941? Which means that the Hunts in 1940 were the less stable Hunt I-class.
AIUI from Smith the Hunt I class had the same type armament of HA twin turrets as the Hunt II, just one turret less. This still meant they were hugely more capable in AA work than the previous destroyers active in the Channel, which had only one old 3.7" HA gun without director control.

There is a picture of HMS Atherstone here:

http://www.middle-watch.co.uk/WW2.htm

The removal of the X turret and the addition of ballast was supposed to have resolved the stability issue.

All the best

Andreas

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LWD
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Post by LWD » 14 Aug 2007 12:00

leandros wrote:...
I am afraid neither the Scandinavian campaign, Dunkirk or Crete can be compared with the potential Seelöwe scenario. In these other scenarios the LW forces were operating on much longer ranges (at Dunkirk most still from their home bases in Germany) therefore increasing their turn-around times, their forces were smaller (at Dunkirk the effort still had to be upheld at the other fronts - Dunkirk did not have priority). ...
I disagree. One must take into account the differences but I note you only mention the ones that would make it easier for the LW. For instance there was no RAF presence at Crete and I don't seam to recall there being a strong CAP during the Scandinavian campaign. The LW is also going to have a lot more on it's plate during Sea Lion than in any of the three you mentioned. Note that the fallacy of your range argument has already been dealt with.

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Post by Bronsky » 22 Aug 2007 14:04

Walter_Warlimont wrote:Actually, all you have done is find the loss reports that YOU can find.
Well, at least he did find some comprehensive loss records, which is more than a couple of other people on this thread have done so far.
Walter_Warlimont wrote:I went hunting for the Emile Deschamps & when I find evidence that it actually was the 243rd Vessel lost at Dunkirk, you dismiss it because it doesn't jive with your findings.

And not only was it the 243rd Vessel lost in the Dunkirk Evacuation, but it was the Last vessel lost at Dunkirk as well.
I don't quite understand what the Emile Deschamps, pride of the Marine Nationale that she may have been, has to do with the subject of this particular sub-thread which is repeated on the top of the page but that I'll add in bold to facilitate reading comprehension:

Seelöwe: British Defensive Measures - Naval and Air Ops

Neither do I find a mention, in the above-referenced text, of that ship being the last vessel lost at Dunkirk. And I am reasonably fluent in French. Here's my translation of the text (moderators, feel free to move this exchange to a more relevant place if required):
Launched in 1922 at the "Chantiers de la Loire" [shipyards] in Nantes for the Norman steam navigation company. Displacement 349 tons, net tonnage 103 tons, two alternative engines.
Commander Ensign TELLIER.

Requisitioned in September 1939 at Le Havre, as the AD20 [AD stands for auxiliary minesweeper]. She takes part in Operation Dynamo between 19 May and 4 June 1940.

The French auxiliary minesweeper Emile Deschamps, commanded by ensign Tellier, which sailed around 22 h 00 on 3 June, transporting 500 men escaped from Dunkirk, arrives 6 milles from North Foreland, at the mouth of the Thames. There was a lot of fog that day. She follows in line of file behind British minesweeper Albury, when a violent explosion, at 06 h 20, caused by a mine, makes her disappear in less than 10 seconds. There are only around a hundred survivors, including a doctor, Hervé Cras, better known under the pen name of Jacques Mordal. It is the 243rd ship sunk during Operation Dynamo which allowed some 338,682 men, 123,095 of them French, to leave the Dunkirk pocket.

Our friend and diver Jean Sales lost his grand-parents in that shipwreck and we wanted to give him a wave despite the distance between the wreck and Dunkirk.
Looking up "Les Opérations Maritimes" du théâtre Nord by Hervé Cras (i.e. the relevant volume of the official history of the French Navy), the Emile Deschamps is the 58th and indeed the last of that particular list. This is a list of FRENCH ships lost in military operations until the end of Dynamo (after which, the relevant Navy department ceased to exist IIRC).

Andreas
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Post by Andreas » 22 Aug 2007 15:12

A couple of new posts have been merged into this thread.

All the best

Andreas

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