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How effective was the German U boat campaign of the First World War - Essay Example

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EFFECTIVENESS OF THE GERMANY U-BOAT CAMPAIGN By Institution 6th, February, 2013 The “Unterseeboot,” which is commonly known as the U-Boat, was a type of submarine, which Germany utilized during the First World War, between the years 1914-1918…
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How effective was the German U boat campaign of the First World War
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Download file to see previous pages However, as technology became more advanced, it also hindered the abilities of this submarine, as countries developed more sophisticated tools of war. The U-Boats were unique and diverse, and belonged to different categories. These played the major role for Germany in the First World War. Their capabilities lasted up to the beginning of the Second World War. This was after Germany’s enemies developed their own different ways of combating the U-Boats (Sondhaus 2011). This paper focuses on the roles the U-Boat campaign played in the First World War, its effectiveness, and ultimate failure. During the First World War, the submarine was seen as the main weapon in the war. The Germany U-Boat was the greatest challenge to the British maritime security during this war. In September 1914, a U-Boat sank three old British cruisers. In the month of October, the same year, a U-Boat again sank a state-of-the-art battleship. Subsequently, more British and French warships were sunk by the U-Boats in the following years. In May 1915, the HMS Triumph was equally sunk, among others. In December of the same year, U-Boat 38 facilitated the sinking of the P&O passenger liner SS Persia. While Britain and France used warships, Germany’s U-Boat campaign was a more effective strategy in the war (Williamson 2013). During the First World War, Germany and Britain used naval blockades to ensure that no ship from one country got access to the other country. Initially, the British succeeded at this, as their surface fleet could intercept Germany-bound ships. This case compelled Germany to utilise the U-Boats. In 1915, Germany adopted an unrestricted submarine warfare strategy. Since Britain relied on foodstuffs and weapons from Canada and America, which were transported across the Atlantic Ocean, Germany thought that this strategy could make British surrender from the war. Therefore, Germany was involved in the indiscriminate sinking of all ships, even those belonging to neutral states. By use of the U-Boat, Germany succeeded in sinking numerous ships, risking the fact that it could add more enemies, apart from Britain and France (Herwig 1998). In May 1015, the U-Boat U-20, led to the sinking of the passenger liner Lusitania, leading to many deaths. Of the passengers on board, were 128 Americans, and 1,170 more passengers. This outraged America, which was neutral in the war during this period. THE U-Boats conducted further sinking of ships, and this resulted in a poor relationship between Germany and America. However, Germany decided to end the unrestrictive strategy in September 1915. This had already cause havoc to the affected countries, as the U-Boat campaign was effective in this. The U-Boat campaign of Germany managed to sink 750,000 tons of enemy’s shipping. However, this did not devastate the economy of Britain (Sheffield 2011). When Germany returned their unrestricted war strategy in September 1916, more havoc was done by the U-Boats. During this period, Germany invested in more manufacturing of U-Boats at a high speed. This led the U-Boat campaign to accomplish another sinking of 250,000 tons within the duration of a few weeks only. This led to the development of more tension between Germany and its rivals. Germany did not care if America, which was neutral, would be compelled to join the war (Sheffield 2011). In 1916, France and Britain defeated the Germany army. This led to Germany to conduct a few changes in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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