The author followed a long career in the Danish Navy, as a torpedo boat skipper, missile corvette captain, intelligence officer and Soviet analyst, with a post as a teacher of naval warfare at the Royal Danish Navy Academy. – This is a well researched, and nicely illustrated book covering the much neglected conflict in the Baltic during WWII – Highly Recommended.
NAME: The Naval War in the Baltic 1939-1945 FILE: R2544 AUTHOR: Poul Grooss PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword, Seaforth BINDING: hard back PAGES: 400 PRICE: £30.00 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: Royal Navy, Napoleonic Wars, technology, naval architecture, wood working, model making, construction techniques, warships, marine engineering
IMAGE: B2544.jpg BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/y9swba5x LINKS: DESCRIPTION: The author followed a long career in the Danish Navy, as a torpedo boat skipper, missile corvette captain, intelligence officer and Soviet analyst, with a post as a teacher of naval warfare at the Royal Danish Navy Academy. - This is a well researched, and nicely illustrated book covering the much neglected conflict in the Baltic during WWII – Highly Recommended. The author has written a comprehensive review of naval actions and interests in the Baltic. For some inexplicable reason, English language publications have largely avoided the war in the Baltic, but also back through history. The Baltic was and is important to the British as a trading area. Elizabeth I considered a marriage proposal from Russia's Ivan IV and British traders were already sending individual ships and convoys into the Baltic each year for trade. British and Swedish interests combined in the German wars through the 17th and 18th Centuries. During the Napoleonic Wars, Sweden and Portugal were the only European allies at a critical stage of the conflict and the British reluctantly invaded neutral Denmark before Napoleon could, taking the Danish Fleet out of France's reach and maintaining British access to the Baltic. It could also be said that the Baltic was to play a very important part in the final battle at Waterloo. Prussian Generalleutnant Graf von Hohenlau had put up a spirited defence against the much larger French army and only become surrounded because his Russian allies broke and ran. Undeterred, he broke through the French encirclement and marched to the Baltic Coast. He sent a messenger to the British Baltic Trade Convoy, asking the Royal Navy for help in evacuating the Prussian Division. Although the British and Prussians were not allies, the naval commander agreed and helped evacuate the Prussians from under the French guns and on to the temporary Prussian capital. Although Prussia was forced to surrender they rose against the French at the first opportunity and joined the Alliance against the French when Napoleon escaped from Elba. The result was that the Prussian army rode to the support of Wellington at a critical point in the Battle of Waterloo, securing the final defeat of Napoleon who was forced to flee the field and fight his own soldiers for access over a bridge in their flight. It should therefore not be surprising that the Baltic was an important theatre during WWII. The Soviets fought the Finns and threatened the Swedes, the Germans traded with Sweden and supported Finland. Naval actions between Germany and the Soviets were bitterly fought and held implications for the siege of Leningrad. The Germans were not the only combatants to trade with Sweden, the British having as great a need for Swedish ball bearings and using high speed aircraft and patrol boats to bring the materials out of the Baltic. The Baltic was also very important to the Germans as an area where they could train their submarine crews in relative safety and locate their secret weapons development sites. That in turn resulted in the British bombing those sites and the shipyards and ports from which the U-boats operated. Then, the Baltic was to see the tragedy off mass evacuations ahead of the advancing Red Army from the Eastern territories, where large number perished. The author has researched impeccably and shown why the Baltic was an important theatre that shaped WWII in ways that have not been fully understood. A masterly presentation of a battle area badly neglected by historians