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 Post subject: Operation Hanninbal
PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 6:02 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 28, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 2423
Location: MARSHFIELD, MA. USA
In 1945, tragic events that dwarf the Titanic disaster too place-perhaps they began in 1944.

the Baltic State and East Prussian, the birthplace of the Unified Germany, were about to be overrun by the Soviet Army.

Not many inhabitants thereof were under any illusions of what would happen to wounded soldiers, Nazis and Nazi sympathizers and ethnic German.

The Kriegsmarmarine mount a major operation to evacuate these unfortunates.

And, if you want to read a related horrer story, read Guy Sajers account of the Russian bombing of Riga prior to the withdrawal of the Wermact and related unit.

Operaton Hannibal amassed a good ly number of ships. The Kriegsmarine had high hope for its success, and Soviet submarine operations were not, at the time, noted for their extent or success.

But this was before the S Boats could prey ohn slow, heavily laden and inadequately escorted and hastily assmebled ship meant to withdraw all the would and anti Red populace from the Baltic states.

Now keep in mind tis is a preliminary post as I have only become aware of the magnitude of horror into which Operation Hannibal.

The ships might just as well have been trying to evacuate the "evacuatees' over the also.

In one sinking alone, 40,000 wounded, ethnic Germans and Nazi sympathizers were drown after a successfull soviet submarine attack.

this is not exactily a surprise, in a way, as the German destroyer fleet had not been heavily trained in or pressed for 'escort duties".

Previous, I had been informed that the siking of the Awa Maru by a US submarine was the worst single maritime disaster in history, with 4000 lost.

The Titanic went wown with 1200 souls, so the magnitude of the disaster is quite clear.

The Germans could, and may have, filed a 'float plan" with Geneva, allegedlu granting immunity to thses vessels, but with so many would and non would Wermacht soldiers aboard, I think the Soviets ignored the "float plan" if, indeed, there was one.

This is just a starting point on this thread, and some of you may be suitable horrified to lok into it before i post more information.

J

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