Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

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Huszar
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Post by Huszar » 31 Dec 2006 10:55

Esperia:
http://paginas.terra.com.br/lazer/Navigazione/Esperia.html
http://www.regiamarina.net/others/esperia/tech_us.htm

Calitea:
http://paginas.terra.com.br/lazer/Navigazione/Calitea.html

Conte Rosso:
http://paginas.terra.com.br/lazer/Navigazione/Conte%20Rosso3.html

The CONTE ROSSO was built in 1921 by W.Beardmore & Co, Ltd for Lloyd Sabaudo of Italy. Her details were - 18,017 gross tons, length overall 588.2ft x beam 74.2ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 18 knots. There was accommodation for 342-1st, 214-2nd and 1,800-3rd class passengers. Launched on 10/2/1921, she sailed from Genoa on her maiden voyage to Naples and South America on 29/3/1922. After this voyage, she commenced sailings from Genoa to Naples and New York on 15/5/1922. In 1925 accommodation for 188-economic 2nd class passengers was added and on 27/2/1928 she commenced her last Genoa - New York crossing. Subsequently she was used on the South America service, and in 1932 was taken over by Lloyd Triestino. On 24/5/1941 she was torpedoed and sunk by the British submarine HMS UPHOLDER while 10 miles from Sicily, with the loss of 1,212 lives. [North Atlantic Seaway by N.R.P.Bonsor, vol.3,p.1368]


Marco Polo:
http://paginas.terra.com.br/lazer/Navigazione/Marco%20Polo.html

br

alex

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Bronsky
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Post by Bronsky » 31 Dec 2006 12:42

Huszar wrote:has anybody data about how much stuff was shipped to NA February-July 1942? Number of ships, tonnage of delivered things?
What I have:
February: 33 started, 3 sunk
March: 37 sailed, 2 sunk


Month - personnel sent - personnel arrived - total cargo sent - dry cargo delivered - fuel delivered

Feb-42 - 531 - 531 - 59,468 - 34,507 - 24,458
Mar-42 - 391 - 284 - 57,541 - 32,483 - 15,105
Apr-42 - 1,349 - 1,349 - 151,578 - 102,358 - 48,031
May-42 - 4,396 - 4,241 - 93,188 - 67,858 - 18,581
Jun-42 - 1,474 - 1,249 - 41,519 - 26,759 - 5,568
Jul-42 - 4,566 - 4,435 - 97,794 - 67,590 - 23,901

Ships sunk can be had from the German-language naval chronology and merchant ships lost links posted by Jon before. The naval chronology will also provide ships despatched as I feel too lazy to do a handcount and type it in myself right now 8-)

Huszar
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Post by Huszar » 31 Dec 2006 13:01

Thanx for the data!

alex

Jon G.
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Post by Jon G. » 24 Feb 2007 18:51

I thought I would add some data to hopefully set the discussion rolling again. Since the discussion has focussed mainly on fuel I've concentrated on fuel figures, too. First off is a monthly breakdown of fuel delivered to Axis forces Libya and, occasionally, Egypt.

All figures in metric tons.

Code: Select all

Month, Year    Tonnage received    
 
 06-40              -                       
 07-40            8,820
 08-40           13,709
 09-40           10,992
 10-40              371
 11-40            8,142
 12-40            5,486

 01-41            2,897
 02-41           10,682
 03-41            4,059
 04-41           23,676
 05-41           20,027
 06-41           35,850
 07-41           11,570
 08-41           37,201           
 09-41           13,108           
 10-41           11,951           
 11-41            2,471           
 12-41            7,133

 01-42           22,842
 02-42           24,458
 03-42           15,105
 04-42           48,031
 05-42           18,581
 06-42            5,568
 07-42           23,901
 08-42           22,503
 09-42           31,061
 10-42           12,308
 11-42           21,731
 12-42            2,058

 01-43               24


...all figures from the Italian official history.

I'm very grateful to Bronsky for having made these figures available to me. These figures appear in bits and pieces on this thread, but I thought it relevant to post (and in some cases re-post) the whole thing in one post.

Next table is made up of numbers I've lifted from Sadkovich, p. 288. It describes fuel sent and received from June through September 1942, further broken down by nationality and with total losses calculated by me.

Code: Select all

          Italian Fuel            German Fuel
          Sent      Arrived       Sent      Arrived    Sent total    Arr. total    %loss

June       4,753     3,804         6,760     5,568      11,513         9,372        19%
July      14,075    12,728        26,870    23,901      40,945        36,629        11%
Aug.      22,167     9,802        38,474    22,500      60,641        32,302        47%
Sept.     18,743    11,973        40,200    31,061      58,943        43,034        27%


...there were also civilian deliveries in the above four months, but I have excluded those.

The discrepancy between table 1), monthly fuel deliveries, and table 2), fuel deliveries broken down by month, can apparently be explained by table 1) counting only German fuel for the months appearing in table 2). That would however seem a little illogical, given that Sadkovich gives the Italian official histories as his source.

The explanation as I see it can either be that Sadkovich overstates his agenda - something which I would not put past him - or simple honest misreading of data on his part.

Any additional info is very welcome - Rich, you earlier mentioned that you had some German fuel receipts from North Africa. Perhaps you'd care to post some data from those so we can determine if Sadkovich overstates the fuel sent and delivered in June through September 1942?

EDIT: it turns out that the June-September 1942 numbers for fuel deliveries compare far better with the monthly fuel deliveries, above. Page 420 in the Italian edition of Sadkovich reads thusly:

Code: Select all

         Italian Fuel         German Fuel
         Sent      Arrived    Sent      Arrived     Sent total      Arr. total    %loss

June      4,753     3,804      2,007     1,764        6,760           5,568        18%
July     14,075    12,728     12,795    11,173       26,870          23,901        11%
Aug.     22,167     9,802     16,307    12,698       38,474          22,500        42%
Sept.    18,743    11,973     21,453    19,088       40,200          31,061        23%


Not quite an a-ha! moment, rather disappointment at having thrown more than 100 USD after a book which can't even get its numbers right :| The Italian edition has been edited by the author and Italian historian Augusto De Toro and comes at a mere 30 Euros.

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Urmel
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Re:

Post by Urmel » 08 Feb 2009 11:30

Jon G. wrote: 4) The Tinos is recorded as sunk in Benghazi harbour on 22/12/41 and as blown up by a munitions explosion ibidem on 06/07/42. Another source gives the date of loss as 22/11/41
'Another source' is correct.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Allan M » 07 Mar 2010 08:33

"Any serious wargamer is going to look at capturing Malta (Capturing Gibralter is meaningless.)"

Considering the huge number of aircraft brought to Malta from Gibraltar, I consider the latter key to the entire Med (and perhaps much, much more). Without it, Malta withers. And then Egypt is overrun.

Thereafter the Med is an Axis lake. The Turkish Straits are forced. The Axis rules the Black Sea. That can't but help their cause against Russia, maybe even be decisive. I suspect Citizen Hitler was whispering Gibraltar while he croaked.

Jon G.
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Jon G. » 07 Mar 2010 16:41

Allan M wrote:"Any serious wargamer is going to look at capturing Malta (Capturing Gibralter is meaningless.)"

Considering the huge number of aircraft brought to Malta from Gibraltar, I consider the latter key to the entire Med (and perhaps much, much more). Without it, Malta withers. And then Egypt is overrun...
I believe that Halder's analysis was that with Alexandria in Axis hands, Malta would simply wither on the vine. You could equally well argue that Cyrenaica was the key to Malta (and, by extension, to the entire Med); whenever Benghazi was in British hands Malta was doing fine.

It was comparatively 'easier' to fly off aircraft for Malta from the Western Med than it was to transport them all the way to Egypt first.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Allan M » 07 Mar 2010 22:07

"I believe that Halder's analysis was that with Alexandria in Axis hands, Malta would simply wither on the vine."

Thanks for the reply. Yes, seems Halder was about the wisest Axis military man.

In something related to North Africa, I've read Dannreuther's "Somerville's Force H" and he wrote on page 98 that "Between April and June [1941], 214 Hurricanes had been flown through to Malta, half of which went on to join the Desert Air Force". I'm wondering when those aircraft left for North Africa. Maybe during November-December when Rommel was pushed back the first time? Also, I'm wondering how much of the stream of aircraft coming up from Takoradi was diverted to points east of Egypt.

Jon G.
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Jon G. » 08 Mar 2010 02:02

For the Takoradi route, please refer to this thread:

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?f=56&t=52658

For the importance (or non-importance) of Malta, see these threads amongst others:

Why didn't the Germans invade Malta?
http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 39&start=0

How important was Malta?
http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 36&start=0

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Jon G. » 14 Mar 2010 02:37

The discussion about Hurricanes and Spitfires for Malta now has its own thread at http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 6&t=163915 please continue that part of the discussion there.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by PMN1 » 06 Oct 2010 21:02

From what I can see, the UK didn't seem to try much against the ships carrying out Operation Sonnenblume, seems a bit short-sighted.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Jon G. » 07 Oct 2010 08:46

Undoubtedly, but only with the benefit of hindsight, and considering that the Luftwaffe had aerial superiority over the Central Med at the time. The British had their hands full sailing troops to Greece at the time, and, in the aftermath of COMPASS they'd decided to consider their Libyan flank secure. They didn't anticipate an Axis counter-offensive to capture Cyrenaica (minus Tobruk). Neither, for that matter, did the OKH.

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Re:

Post by PMN1 » 11 Oct 2010 19:12

Jon G. wrote:
You're right that fuel delivered by tanker to Tripolis is a wasteful proposal due to the overland distance to the front - but fuel was regularly delivered to Benghazi, closer to the front, which could accomodate tankers. The Italians built oil tanks at Benghazi in 1942 for that purpose.
Were there any there at all before construction of the ones in 1942 started?

Any idea what capacity the newly constructed one had?

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Polar bear
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Polar bear » 10 Nov 2010 09:49

hello,

I`m a rather new forum member and I`ve a question to this crew with an incredibly store of accumulated knowledge and data.

Presently, I`m writing an essay on German troops lost at sea (Weserübung 1940, North Africa 1941-43, Aegean 1941-43)

Can somebody provide me with a internet link to that topic or - even better - a list of Numbers of soldiers (if possible, specified unit) lost with a specific ship ?

example: 1250 men of ArtRgt 33 (15.PzDiv) lost with ARTA/AEGINA/ADANA/ISERLOHN on April 16, 1941 sunk by RN DD`s
(that´s the only rather precise example for NA troop transport losses I have)

greetings, the pb
Peace hath her victories no less renowned than War
(John Milton, the poet, in a letter to the Lord General Cromwell, May 1652)

Jon G.
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Jon G. » 10 Nov 2010 18:45

Hi Polar bear, what you are after is a rather tall order. You probably have to go to period sources to get precise figures for numbers of troops lost.

However, a nice overview of ships lost is provided by the Seekrieg site, specifically the 'Index der Geleitzüge / Konvois' sub-pages. The page uses an annoyingly outdated frames format, but is packed with useful information. And for your benefit, it's in German, too.

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