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Pola was the seat of the Italian Navy's Submarine School, various submarines (mostly from the older classes) were stationed there thoroughout the war as training boats. I do not have a complete list of the submarines assigned there but these included, at various times, Ettore Fieramosca, Luigi Settembrini, Emo, Luciano Manara, Goffredo Mameli, Fisalia, Adua, Marcantonio Bragadin, Francesco Rismondo, Des Geneys, Serpente, Medusa (sunk off Pola by HMS Thorn in January 1942 with the loss of 58 men, including several cadets), Jalea, Otaria, Enrico Toti, Ciro Menotti, Giovanni Bausan, Velella, Delfino, Balilla, Domenico Millelire, Tito Speri, Squalo, Diaspro and others.
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- Location: Argentina
Sinking of the smg Uebi Scebeli.
On June 27, 1940, the smg Uebi Scebeli, under tenente di vascello Bruno Zani, sailed from Taranto for her third combat mission, an ambush northwest of Derna. At 6:30 (or 6:20) on the morning of June 29, sailing on the surface off the coast of Crete during the approach to the ambush, the Uebi Scebeli sighted a formation of British destroyers: they were the Dainty, Defender , Decoy, Voyager and Ilex (the "C" Force), participating in anti-submarine raking in the central Mediterranean between Alexandria and Tobruk to protect the British supply operation "MA 3" of Malta, Egypt and Greece. The five units had already sunk two days before, the Italian submersible Liuzzi, and had just finished an attack on another submarine with uncertain result (it is possible that a second Italian submersible, the Argonaut was sunk). At 6:42 the Ilex sighted the Uebi Scebeli, on the surface, at a distance of eight miles, to the 330º: while the Decoy and the Voyager remained at the site of the first attack, the Dainty, the Defender and the Ilex went at full speed to the Uebi Scebeli, who had to crash dive, and the Dainty and the Ilex attacked her with depth charges.
The submersible tried to maneuver to get away and avoid the depth charges, but it was badly damaged (waterways were opened and several instruments stopped working), so much that she had to emerge from the damage received: just on the surface, was surrounded by Destroyers, who attacked her with precise shots of cannons and machine guns that repeatedly hit the conning tower. Commander Zani discovered that the ship was sinking slowly due to damage, while British ships stopped firing as soon as they saw the crew climb onto the deck to leave the unit, they were about to board: Therefore, Zani commanded accelerate the sinking, throw the files into the sea and abandon the submersible. The secret documents on board (codes, encrypted, orders of operations and others), including the new code of the Regia Marina, which had been approved a few days ago, were taken to the bridge and thrown into the water one after the other while Zani controlled the operation , but he saw that some of the secret publications, although (usually) had been equipped with appropriate lead weights to ensure a quick sinking and avoid capture, were still afloat. The boats of the British destroyers approached quickly, with the obvious intention of boarding the submarine.
Commander Zani again ordered to accelerate the sinking, but in the meantime, a Defender's crew had boarded the submarine and two British officers came aboard; The two went down inside the submarine and reached the control room, but Zani followed immediately and told them that the ship was sinking. Seeing the water on the floor in the control room, the two British officers returned to the deck immediately. Meanwhile, the crew of Uebi Scebeli left the ship: some men threw themselves into the water, but most went directly to the boats of the destroyers. Finally also Commander Zani, the second commander (Lieutenant Gian Giacomo Manfredi), the chief engineer (tenente del Genio Navale Direzione Macchine Uttieri) and the Navigation officer (sottotenente di vascello Rupil) boarded one of the boats, along with the two British officers.
Sources: http://conlapelleappesaaunchiodo.blogsp ... ebeli.html
http://www.ebay.ca/itm/1940-British-Des ... Sw5cRZNqkx
Cheers. Raúl M .
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