2nd January 1793 “The Childers Incident” first shot of the French Revolutionary War

HMS Childers. Painting in collection of National Maritime Museum, Greenwich.

OTDIH 2nd August 1943

70-years ago today…

The U-boat war continued:

On 2 August 1943 there were 85 U-boats at sea. Of these, 17 boats (20%) would be lost during their patrol.

U-218 (Kptlt. Richard Becker), a Type VIID U-boat on its fifth war patrol, was attacked by a Wellington bomber from 547 Squadron, RAF Coastal Command. The U-Boat was damaged and 6 crew members were wounded during the attack. The mine-laying patrol was abandoned and the boat returned to Brest. (U-218 was scuttled, post-war, during Operation Deadlight. The wreck was explored by Innes McCartney in June 2001.)

U-653 (Kptlt. Gerhard Feiler), a Type VIIC U-boat on its seventh war patrol, was attacked by an American B-24 Liberator bomber east of Trinidad. The air attack was unsuccessful and the U-boat survived without damage.

The British merchant City of Oran was torpedoed and damaged by U-196 (KrvKpt. Eitel-Friedrich Kentrat), a Type IXD2 U-boat on her first war patrol (225-days!), in the Indian Ocean, approx 100 nm northeast of Memba Bay, Tanganyika. The rescue tug HMS Masterful picked up 86 survivors and scuttled the City of Oran with gunfire.

Arriving on the field of battle:

HMS Begum (D38), an Ameer-class escort carrier, formerly the USS Bolinas (CVE-36), was commissioned into the Royal Navy, Capt. John Egerton Broome, DSC, RN commanding.

And a future President of the United States began his legend:

PT-109, an ELCO ’80 torpedo boat, (Lt jg John Fitzgerald Kennedy, USNR commanding) was rammed and sunk by the Japanese destroyer Amagiri in Blackett Strait, Solomon Islands. JFK would be played by Cliff Robertson in the movie PT-109.

French naval base open to visitors this summer

The French Navy base at Brest will be open to visitors this summer from 1 July to 30 August. EU citizens and NATO personnel bring valid id. Other nationals phone 02 98 22 06 12 for access.

The Arsenal de Brest is a major naval base on France’s Atlantic coast and is home to the French strategic submarine force (Force Océanique Stratégique) that incldues Le Triomphant-class SSBNs.

Ouverture de la base navale de Brest pendant la période estivale

Mise à jour : 28/06/2013 15:31

Du 1er juillet au 30 août 2013, de 10h à 16h, la base navale de Brest sera ouverte aux visites en continu à pied, depuis la porte de la Grande Rivière.

Les marins brestois accueilleront les groupes de visiteurs pour une visite d’une durée d’une à deux heures de la base navale et d’un bâtiment de la Marine nationale selon disponibilité.

Modalités pratiques

  • Visites ouvertes au public de l’Union Européenne et de l’OTAN sur présentation d’une carte nationale d’identité en cours de validité
  • Autres ressortissants : demande préalable à formuler au 02 98 22 06 12.
  • Informations au 0800 523 535

Photos interdites dans l’enceinte militaire.