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Tirpitz does try and intercept PQ17

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  • Tirpitz does try and intercept PQ17

    What I am considering here is if the decision to scatter the convoy would have been the right decision in the event that Tirptz plus presumably some escorting destroyers and supported by German bombers and submarines was really coming for the convoy.


    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Convoy...overing_forces

    On paper the covering forces, particularly the two battleships, should have been easily sufficient to deal with the Tirpitz. But would they have been too far away to intervene, just leaving the cruiser squadron able to provide support to the convoy? Or was there a fear of risking the battleships too close to German airfields? Saw a documentary on PQ17 and the heavy covering force was never mentioned, just the cruiser squadron. Another thing, the threat from Tirpitz was not new, it had been in Norway for some time and presumably could have sailed out to intercept any convoy. Thus why weren't there contingency plans in place to deal with such an event? It seems as if the decision to scatter was taken on the spur of the moment.


    "To be free is better than to be unfree - always."

  • #2
    Using German orders, it wouldn't have made any difference if it was just the cruiser squadron since they weren't supposed to fight any force anywhere near their own power. The Scharnhorst didn't press its advantage before the DoY showed up in the Battle of North Cape.

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    • #3
      I'd say at best Tirpitz is forced at some point to break off contact because of British covering forces engaging, at worst the battleship ends up on the bottom of the ocean.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
        I'd say at best Tirpitz is forced at some point to break off contact because of British covering forces engaging, at worst the battleship ends up on the bottom of the ocean.
        Or they run out of fuel oil, and the USS Washington has to tow her to -Iceland...
        The trout who swims against the current gets the most oxygen..

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        • #5
          Originally posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
          I'd say at best Tirpitz is forced at some point to break off contact because of British covering forces engaging, at worst the battleship ends up on the bottom of the ocean.
          I have wondered about the heavy covering force. Would the Allies have been afraid of exposing them to attack from German planes and submarines? To protect the convoy the battleships would have had to get much closer to the Norwegian coast and would have been well within the range of German bombers.
          "To be free is better than to be unfree - always."

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Surrey View Post

            I have wondered about the heavy covering force. Would the Allies have been afraid of exposing them to attack from German planes and submarines? To protect the convoy the battleships would have had to get much closer to the Norwegian coast and would have been well within the range of German bombers.
            I don't see the RN backing away from a fight. They may end up like Rocky in one those movies, all beaten and battered, but they'd still get in the ring and most likely win.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by T. A. Gardner View Post

              I don't see the RN backing away from a fight. They may end up like Rocky in one those movies, all beaten and battered, but they'd still get in the ring and most likely win.
              Or the American Sailors. Germany had declared war on the States, and Operation Drumbeat had just ravaged the coasts.

              Swabbies can fight. My dad and his friend Steve were wedged into an alley corner in The Gorbals of Glasgow on VE day Saturday night , fending off a dozen( so my dad said) dance hall toughs, when two investigative teams, lead by Bosums form an american cruiser, sealed off the alley- looking for the toughs who had pulled off the wallet dip and beating on two crewmen.....
              "wHAT THEY TAKE OFF YOU BOYS..?"
              sez a Bosum
              "My wallet' sez Steve...
              The bosum tossed him a roll of British money, 'donated' by the dance hall manager.
              "NOW GET OUT OF HERE- THE US NAVY'S TAKING OVER..."


              DAD ALWAYS HAD A SOFT SPOT FOR -USS ships......





              The trout who swims against the current gets the most oxygen..

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