The author died in 1989, aged 90, but fortunately he took the time to write this enthralling account of one of the least told important stories of WWII. The Royal Navy attracted a wide range of very different individuals to the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve in the months before the outbreak of WWII. The author was a barrister who became a specialist in investigating German underwater weapons and neutralizing them – Very Highly Recommended.
NAME: Secret Naval Investigator, The Battle Against Hitler's Secret Underwater Weapons FILE: R2530 AUTHOR: Commander F Ashe Lincoln QC RNVR PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword, Frontline BINDING: hard back PAGES: 182 PRICE: £19.99 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: WWII, World War Two, World War 2, Second World War, underwater weapons, bomb disposal, mine disposal, intelligence, technology, counter measures
IMAGE: B2530.jpg6 BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/lzsh7bp LINKS: DESCRIPTION: The author died in 1989, aged 90, but fortunately he took the time to write this enthralling account of one of the least told important stories of WWII. The Royal Navy attracted a wide range of very different individuals to the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve in the months before the outbreak of WWII. The author was a barrister who became a specialist in investigating German underwater weapons and neutralizing them – Very Highly Recommended. The work of bomb disposal specialists from the RN, Army and RAF has received very little attention, even though they played a critical role during WWII and, although they may not have won the war, they certainly avoided defeat. Their existence was a deadly cat and mouse game with German designers developing bombs and mines. An important part of each weapon design was technology deliberately intended to kill bomb disposal personnel. That is a fair indication of just how important these heroes were, that the enemy should spend so much effort to kill them. To many, the assumption is that a bomb or a mine should explode when dropped or come into contact with a ship. In reality, the challenges facing a weapons designer are infinitely more complex. If a bomb explodes at first contact, it may fail to do maximum damage to the target. When aimed at a land target, the bomb that penetrates before exploding causes maximum damage. By introducing a delay system, the designer can also aim to kill people who would have been taking shelter at the time the bomb was dropped. As the air raid defence forces have no idea which bombs are duds and which are either quietly counting down to detonation, or waiting for their bobby traps to set them off and kill bomb disposal personnel, large areas may have to be left vacant until a very careful research has accounted for all bombs dropped and ensured that they no longer present a threat. Similarly, sea mines have two basic tasks. One is to sink ships, but as important is the mine that closes a shipping route until it has been located and neutralized. In most conflicts, the unexploded device can present a greater problem by just sitting there and denying freedom of access to the enemy. Disposing of ordinance requires a very special person. It is a nerve- racking job where the disposer can be blown apart at any moment, calling for a very special form of courage. Neutralizing the device is important but it is also very important to identify each new weapon, how it works, what it is capable of, how to safely dispose of it and how to develop counter measures. In the case of the magnetic mine, it was initially a mystery. Ships were being damaged and sunk by devices that were unknown. They did not float awaiting a target, therefore being vulnerable to minesweepers that could cut their mooring tethers and explode them when they surfaced. This was an unknown weapon that appeared in swept areas and did not require direct contact with the target. The author provides a vivid account of his activities during WWII and for many readers this will all be fresh news. There just has not been before an account of this type about such a dangerous and vital job during WWII. Of particular note is the discussion of the work to counter magnetic mines and acoustic torpedoes.