Batalii Maritime Ww1

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<ul><li><p>THE GREAT WAR AT SEA1914-1918</p><p> RICHARD HOUGH</p><p>2</p></li><li><p> Richard Hough 2013 </p><p>Richard Hough has asserted his rights under the Copyright, Design and Patents Act, 1988, tobe identified as the author of this work.</p><p>First published by Oxford University Press in 1983This edition published by Endeavour Press Ltd in 2013</p><p>3</p></li><li><p>To the memory of Arthur Marder </p><p>4</p></li><li><p>TABLE OF CONTENTSPREFACE'AN ENORMOUS SHIP'THE ANGLO-GERMAN BATTLESHIP RACECHURCHILL AT THE ADMIRALTYTHE ACCELERATION TOWARDS WARWAR AND EARLY MIXED FORTUNESMEDITERRANEAN MISFORTUNESTRAGEDY IN THE PACIFICTROUBLE IN THE ADMIRALTY, TRIUMPH IN THE SOUTH ATLANTICFIRST CLASH OF THE DREADNOUGHTSTHE DARDANELLES FIASCO AND ITS CONSEQUENCESTHE UNDERSEA WARTHE SEARCH FOR DECISIVE ACTIONJUTLAND: BATTLE-CRUISER ACTIONJUTLAND: BATTLE FLEETS IN ACTIONJUTLAND: A RETROSPECTIONTHE DEFEAT OF THE U-BOAT, SURRENDER AND SCUTTLENOTE ON SOURCESNOTESABBREVIATIONSSUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER READINGExtract from Unheard, Unseen by David Boyle </p><p>5</p></li><li><p>PREFACE </p><p>Following the publication of his third volume of Jacky' Fisher's letters in 1959, ProfessorArthur Marder suggested that I should write a biography of his hero, and gave me muchassistance and advice when I agreed to do so. Then, sometime before his untimely death onChristmas Day 1980, he and the Oxford University Press approached me with the suggestionthat I should embark on a one-volume history of the Royal Navy 1914-18. In this proposed newwork I was to have additionally the bonus of access to all Marder's papers and, of specialvalue, the papers he had accumulated since the publication of the five volumes of From theDreadnought to Scapa Flow. On his death this material was all in characteristic Marder orderin preparation for further revised and expanded editions of his own work.</p><p>Arthur Marder and I had been friends and mutual critical admirers since the late 1950s. Iwas never so professionally stimulated as when with him, either in England or southernCalifornia. In Marder's company, 'shop' ruled everything, and I can recall with someembarrassment a private dinner at the Garrick Club during which, at opposite ends of the table,we found ourselves overwhelming all other conversation and rearranging the cutlery in aprolonged Jutland debate. We did not agree on all matters, nor all judgements, but that onlyadded a spice to our relationship.</p><p>In the last months of his life he asked me to read and comment upon the manuscript of hislast great work, Old Friends, New Enemies; and in his last letter to me written a few daysbefore he died he wrote warmly about my biography of our mutual friend, Lord Mountbatten. Iwas able to talk to Marder, all too briefly, about my preparatory work for this book. I mostearnestly hope that he would have approved of it in this final form. I know that he would havebeen gratified that I had the continuous and invaluable advice of Lieutenant-Commander PeterKemp, who proved himself Marder's own 'ready and constant counsellor' for so many years,and to whom I, too, owe a great deal over twenty-five years of writing naval history.</p><p>RICHARD HOUGH </p><p>6</p></li><li><p>'AN ENORMOUS SHIP' </p><p>The influence of the German Emperor - Britain's new alliances - Admiral Fisherappointed First Sea Lord - The need for naval reforms - The conception of the Dreadnought,and her critics </p><p>An onlooker described the launch of HMS Dreadnought as 'the greatest sight I have everseen - it made me proud of my country and of the Navy'. 'She went in without a hitch,' a navalcadet wrote home, 'She is an enormous ship.' (1)</p><p>The battleship was launched by Edward VII at Portsmouth on a chill, dour day in February1906. The King sang 'For those in peril on the sea' as ardently as anyone present. He wasafterwards presented with an oak casket, carved from Nelson's flagship, HMS Victory. Itcontained the mallet and chisel used in simulation to sever Dreadnought's last cable securingher to the slip.</p><p>The first Dreadnought had been built in 1573 and fought against the Spanish Armada, thesixth distinguished herself at Trafalgar. This was the ninth ship in the Royal Navy to carry thename, and her historical associations were as numerous as her innovations. Almost everyfeature of this battleship was notable and novel. As those who had been chiefly responsible forher proudly proclaimed, the Dreadnought was to be the biggest, fastest, and most heavilygunned battleship in the world. She was also to be heavily armoured and protected from fataldamage by elaborate compartmentation. For the first time in a battleship, the Dreadnought wasto be driven by efficient and clean turbines in place of reciprocating engines.</p><p>This battleship, floating high out of the waters of Portsmouth harbour, flags taut in thebreeze, and, to the sound of music and cheers, being nursed towards her fitting-out basin bypaddle tugs, was to lend her name to every subsequent capital ship built for the world's navies.Even the Germans, the future enemy who built almost as many as the British, called themDreadnoughtschiffe. It was a breed of fighting ship that in its size and grace and provocativeappearance celebrated appropriately the last generation of the big-gun man o'war. TheDreadnought, built at unprecedented speed and at once making every other battleship of theworld outdated, became a political and material factor in the naval arms race already underway between Britain and Germany. 'Germany has been paralysed by the Dreadnought',Admiral Sir John Fisher, First Sea Lord, wrote gloatingly and with every word underlined, toKing Edward VII. Germany was dismayed, even outraged, but not paralysed for long. Tenyears later Germany could put to sea a fleet of twenty-one dreadnought battleships and battle-cruisers in the greatest naval battle in the war: a war which the dreadnought and thecompetition she intensified, had in large measure brought about.</p><p>Fifteen years earlier Germany had possessed a negligible navy of small coast-defencevessels, and though the Germans were powerful on land, the sea was not an element that hadpreviously inspired their interest or ambition. For Britain the Pax Britannica had beensustained since Trafalgar and the Napoleonic wars by a Navy which incontestably 'ruled the</p><p>7</p></li><li><p>waves', boasting a numerical strength greater than that of any likely combination of naviesafloat. The strength and quality of the Royal Navy were as unquestioned by the mass of thepeople as those of God and Queen Victoria. Everyone gave ... three cheers and one cheermore, for the hardy Captain of the Pinafore, and 'the ruler of the Queen's Navee' would stillhave been an object of veneration even if Gilbert and Sullivan had not kept the nationhumming. The Diamond Jubilee review of the fleet in 1897 was described by the The Times as'this unexampled scene ... Nothing could be more impressive than the long lines of shipsanchored in perfect order, spreading over miles of water in apparently endless array.'</p><p>The Navy's influence and presence were world-wide. From the rivers of China to theNavy's coaling station in the Falkland Islands, from Newfoundland to Simon's Town in SouthAfrica, and from Malta to Wellington, New Zealand, the white ensign flew and gunboats orsecond-class protected cruisers, battleships, or torpedo boats, were available for anyoccasion, ceremonial or unruly.</p><p>Sir Walter Raleigh at the time of an earlier great queen had written that 'There are two waysin which England may be afflicted. The one by invasion the other by impeachment of ourTrades.' Few English people read Raleigh in the 1890s, and even fewer bothered to define orcomprehend the meaning of the maritime supremacy the nation enjoyed. This task became theresponsibility of an obscure American naval captain, Alfred Thayer Mahan, who wroteseveral works of history on the influence of sea power. (2) These were read with wonder andadmiration in Britain, and alerted many people to the importance of retaining the superioritythey had taken for granted for almost a century. If her Trades were impeached, Britain'sindustry would be silenced, her people starved.</p><p>Mahan's work was timely. In those final decades of the nineteenth century the colonialappetite of other nations was growing apace, and with it an interest in trade and the sea uponwhich it depended. Mahan was read in Washington and Berlin, Tokyo and Paris, and aconsciousness of the value of naval strength spread through the defence councils of nationswhich would benefit from it, as well as many others concerned with prestige and power overtheir neighbours.</p><p>Soon after the completion of the Dreadnought, others of her kind even larger, moreexpensive, and more powerful were ordered by three South American republics, by Spain,Italy, Greece, and Turkey, as well as by the major powers. In Japan, newly built shipyardsconstructed some of the finest men o'war of their time. The United States Navy, so insignificantthat it had been openly challenged by Chile in 1891, expanded rapidly and began orderingbattleships.</p><p>Before the end of the nineteenth century the growth of navies all over the world was alreadyshaping the direction of twentieth-century history. Nowhere was the course more sharply anduncompromisingly delineated than in Germany; nowhere were the lessons of Captain Mahanstudied more zealously.</p><p>The rise of the German Navy from the early 1890s to 1914 was a remarkable achievement.A navy demands a multitude of special skills both in the construction of ships and the trainingof the men to serve in them. The Germans lacked experience equally in the manufacture ofarmour-plate and heavy naval ordnance as in gunnery, signalling, and manoeuvring a large</p><p>8</p></li><li><p>number of ships at sea. Nor did they possess any naval traditions or history. They were startingfrom the first riveter working on the first strake and the first gunlayer behind the sights of an8.2-inch naval gun in a choppy sea. But the Germans learned fast and - like the new UnitedStates and Japanese navies - largely from the British Navy.</p><p>The inspiration for the German Kriegsmarine came from the Emperor himself, KaiserWilhelm II. He was a ruler whose withered left arm was matched by a flawed mind, wholaboured under grievances all his life, the most dominant in the early years of his reign beingenvy for the navy of his grandmother, Queen Victoria. It caused the Kaiser real suffering not tobe supreme. He boasted the greatest army in the world as well as the grandest personaluniforms and decorations. When he saw his nephew enjoying Cowes Week, and winning racesthere, the Kaiser set about building the finest ocean cutter in the world and applying himselfwith earnest seriousness to the art of racing. After expressing his complaints about thehandicapping, his will to win prevailed until the future Edward VII could bear it no longer:'The regatta at Cowes was once a pleasant holiday for me,' he remarked sadly, 'but now thatthe Kaiser has taken command there it is nothing but a nuisance.' And he never went again.</p><p>Kaiser Wilhelm did not care to be seen in an inferior Royal Yacht to his grandmother's so heordered a bigger and grander one. Wherever the Kaiser sailed in his glittering Hohenzollernhe saw evidence of the dominant power of Britain at sea. He resented deeply the Royal Navy'ssize, strength, and apparent efficiency. He resented the respect for and acquiescence to theRoyal Navy by the rest of the world, and Britain's pride in the service which he saw as nomore than arrogance.</p><p>The Kaiser's partner who shared and encouraged his ambition was Alfred von Tirpitz, whowas ten years older (born 19 March 1849) and had originally served in the old and unesteemedPrussian Navy. Tirpitz showed no special distinction as a sailor in this minor service, butrevealed himself as a brilliant and ambitious administrator and political manipulator. Hestrongly attracted the attention of the Emperor, and became Secretary of State for the ImperialNavy in June 1897, a date which marks the birth of the mighty High Seas Fleet.</p><p>Tirpitz needed all his Machiavellian qualities, and all the Kaiser's powerful support, topersuade the Reichstag to pass the first of his German Navy Laws in 1898 against the liberal-pacifist element on one side and the Prussian Army clement which was equally hostile. Thislaw provided for the considerable expansion of the service, and was followed by a second in1900 of a much more ambitious nature. It called for a fleet including 38 battleships, 20armoured cruisers and 38 light cruisers - a fleet which he justified in these momentous andthreatening words:</p><p>In order to protect German trade and commerce under existing conditions only one thing willsuffice, namely, Germany must possess a battle fleet of such a strength that even for the mostpowerful naval adversary a war would involve such risks as to make that Power's ownsupremacy doubtful. For this purpose it is not absolutely necessary that the German fleetshould be as strong as that of the greatest naval Power, for, as a rule, a great naval Power willnot be in a position to concentrate all its forces against us. </p><p>These words were heard with dismay in Britain. Germany's colonial expansion in Africa</p><p>9</p></li><li><p>and the East- the Weltpolitik- and hostile events such as the despatch of the provocative anti-British 'Kruger Telegram' of 1896, and the Anglophobic chorus conducted by Germanstatesmen and the Press during the Boer War, all combined to cause alarm and a massivereappraisal of the naval position of Britain and her Empire at the end of the old century.</p><p>The death of Queen Victoria on 22 January 1901 caused conflicting shocks of grief anddisbelief that the old lady was not after all immortal. Her eldest, once recalcitrant and muchabused son succeeded at a moment in the nation's history of anxiety and the need for far-reaching decisions. France, Russia, and Germany were all hostile. No one approved ofBritain's war against the Boer farmers, and suspicion and disapproval of her imperial powerand stance were widespread. Now her Navy was being directly threatened by the mostpowerful military nation in the world.</p><p>As one writer was to put it, 'Without the supremacy of the British Navy the best security forthe world's peace and advancement would be gone. Nothing would be so likely as the passingof sea-power from our hands to bring about another of those long ages of conflict and returningbarbarism which have thrown back civilization before and wasted nations.' (3) Between them,Kaiser Wilhelm II and the head of his navy had brought about an end to the Pax Britannica evenbefore the first keel of the first of the new German battleships was laid down.</p><p>For Britain, the end of the old century and the death of the old Queen marked also the end ofisolation. The accession of that most gregarious of monarchs, Edward VII, could not haveoccurred at a more appropriate time for the nation. Britain was in need of friends.</p><p>Within a few years, the Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Friendship (30 January 1902) and theEntente Cordiale (8 April 1904) with France, lovingly prepared by Edward VII, permi...</p></li></ul>