Hitler's Forgotten Flotillas: Kriegsmarine Security Forces

Hitler's Forgotten Flotillas: Kriegsmarine Security Forces

by Lawrence Paterson

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“A vast amount of information on the German Naval Security Fleet, sicherungsstreitkräfte, producing what is a unique review in depth.” —Firetrench.com
This study of the Kriegsmarine’s Sicherungsstreitkräfte, their security forces, fills a glaring gap in the study of the German navy in World War II. This wide array of vessels included patrol boats, minesweepers, submarine hunters, barrage breakers, landing craft, minelayers, and even the riverine flotilla that patrolled the Danube as it snaked towards the Black Sea. These vessels may not have provided the glamour associated with capital ships and U-boats, but they were crucial to the survival of the Kriegsmarine at every stage of hostilities.
As naval construction was unable to keep pace with the likely demand for security vessels, Grossadmiral Erich Raeder turned to the conversion of merchant vessels. For example, trawlers were requisitioned as patrol boats (Vorpostenboot) and minesweepers (Minensucher), while freighters, designated Sperrbrecher, were filled with buoyant materials and sent to clear minefields. Submarine hunters (U-Boot Jäger) were requisitioned fishing vessels. More than 120 flotillas operated in wildly different conditions, from the Arctic to the Mediterranean, and eighty-one men were to be awarded the Knights Cross; some were still operating after the cessation of hostilities clearing German minefields. The author deals with whole subject at every level, documenting organizational changes, describing the vessels, and recounting individual actions of ships at sea, while extensive appendices round off this major new work.
“Paterson offers a well researched narrative detailing both the large scale aspect of Security Forces operations interspersed with examples of key or typical engagement examples.” —The International Journal of Maritime History

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781473882416
Publisher: Pen & Sword Books Limited
Publication date: 04/30/2018
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 265,549
File size: 15 MB
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About the Author

Lawrence Paterson has a long-standing interest in the Kriegsmarine.

Table of Contents

Maps vi

Introduction xi

Glossary xiii

1 Development of Naval Mine Warfare and Auxiliary Ships in the Kaiser's Navy 1

2 Defending Germany's Coasts: Minesweepers, Vorpostenboote and U-Jäger of the Kriegsmarine, 1939-1940 26

3 Expanding Horizons: German Pyrrhic Victory in Norway and the Fall of France, 1940 59

4 Establishing the Security Divisions, 1941 99

5 Sun and Steel: The Security Forces move into North Africa and the Soviet Union, 1941-1942 120

6 War in the North and West: The Security Flotillas in Western Europe, the Baltic and Norway, 1942-1943 151

7 War in Southern Russia: The Security Forces in the Black Sea, July 1942-1944 185

8 The 'Inland Seas': The Security Forces in the Mediterranean, Aegean and Tyrrhenian Seas, June 1942-December 1943 216

9 The Mediterranean, Adriatic and Aegean, January 1944-May 1945 267

10 Elimination: Allied Forces mount Operations against the Security Forces, 1944-1945 279

Postscript 313

Appendices 315

Notes 337

Bibliography 342

Index 344

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