F.d.U./B.d.U.'S War Log

1 - 15 December 1941

PG30301A

     
     
 
1. December 1941.
 
     
 
I.
U 43
-
CE 80  
U 124
-
FT 42  
U 332
- CG 72  
U 558
- CG 94
 
67
-
CG 46  
126
-
ES 28  
372
- CG 75  
562
- E. of Gibr.
 
68
-
CG 71  
127
-
AN 31  
175
- CG 45  
563
- BF 42
 
69
-
BE 42  
129
-
FT 46  
402
- BE 43  
574
- CE 90
 
71
-
BF 47  
131
-
AF 78  
434
- CE 90  
575
- CF 90
 
95
- E. of Gibr.  
201
- BE 51  
451
- AF 77  
652
- CH 75-Op
 
96
- CG 94  
206
- BF 47  
453
- Op(CG 80)  
A
- GF 96
 
105
- CF 80  
     
557
- E. of Gibr.  
   
     
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 126.
  Sailed:  U 130 - Kiel        Entered Port:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  In areas BE 40 and 50.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) Convoy No. 17 see IVa.
    2) U 453 reported from CG 9456 large steamer with Sunderland. Course East, speed 12 knots.
    3) For sinking of "Python" see IV d.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) 1) Convoy No. 17:  U 105 reported at 0857 from CE 9441 a steamer, with lights, accompanied by 2 destroyers with lights dimmed.  Course 2700, speed 18 knots.  The boat was not able to maintain contact.  U 43 sighted at 1145 from CE 8689 clouds of smoke in direction 900.  Wind was North, strength 5, with drizzle, otherwise good visibility.
       
      Situation:  B.d.U. assumes that the convoy has been finally lost - since even at a speed of 6 knots it must have passed the patrol line - and that reports from the boats regarding single vessels have led to misunderstandings regarding the actual course of the convoy.  Pursuit has been given up.  B.d.U. expects to achieve success with a reconnaissance patrol, which will detect routes from America to Gibraltar and will at the same time, therefore, have an influence on supplies for the Mediterranean.  Order:  Boats are to take up position at midnight on the 3rd December in their old sequence in the reconnaissance patrol from CF 7877 to CF 7271, course 900, speed of advance 6 knots. Until then freedom of action.
       
    2) CG Convoy:  Group "Letzte Ritter" will continue on course South, speed 6 knots.  Air reconnaissance was without success.
       
       
   
- 243 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  b) None.
  c) None.
  d) 1) UA reported at 0015 on the 2nd December from GF 9367 that "Python" was sunk by a heavy British cruiser at the supply point of rendezvous.  Therefore, within 10 days 2 ships of this type have been lost.
      UA also reported that, together with U 68, 2 tow groups have been formed. Course 3300, speed 5 knots.  Fuel will be sufficient in the case of both boats to reach Western France.  U 124 and U 129 have been ordered to report their position and fuel supplies.
    2) U 563 reported at 2000, that she was quite unable to dive owing to damage by aircraft bombs. Position BF 4711 course 70, speed 8 knots.  U 71 and U 206 were ordered to go to U 563.  The Air Corps will provide close and remote air escort by fighter-bombers for the morning of the 2nd December. Group West has been requested to provide surface forces and has ordered the 3rd defence Division to send three M-boats to meet the U 563.
       
V. Reports of sinkings:  - . -
       
VI. General:
  In view of the sinking of "Python" every possibility of refuelling in the Atlantic has been eliminated now.  It will hardly be possible to resume refuelling on the surface - the time for such undertakings is past.
       
  (Pencil note:  IF it is assumed that "Ship 16" and "Python" were victims of a planned search by the enemy, yes.  Up to now, however, the reasons cannot be definitely established.)
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
2. December 1941.
       
I.
U 43
-
CE 98  
U 124
-
FT 83  
U 332
- Op(CG 80)  
U 558
- CG 99
 
67
-
CG 84  
126
-
ES 23  
372
- Op(CG 80)  
562
- E. of Gibr.
 
68
-
CF 96  
127
-
AN 30  
375
- CG 81  
563
- BF 71
 
69
-
BE 48  
129
-
FT 96  
402
- BE 73  
574
- CE 98
 
71
-
BF 48  
130
-
AO  
434
- CE 95  
575
- CE 95
 
95
- E. of Gibr.  
131
- AM 32  
451
- AM 32  
652
- Op(CH 75)
 
96
- CG 99  
201
- BE 81  
453
- Op(CG 85)  
A
- GF 96
 
105
- CE 98  
206
  BE 99  
557
- E. of Gibr.  
   
 
 
 
   
       
       
- 244 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  On Return Passage:  U 126 - U 563
  Sailed:  - . -         Entered Port:  U 563 - Lorient.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:
  On convoy CG 79
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 453 reported from CG 9449 destroyer and depth-charges.
    2) U 96 was bombed in the night of 30th November to 1st December by a bi-plane.  She is able to dive to a short depth and is returning.  The Commanding Officer considered operations East of Gibraltar in light moonlight nights as hopeless owing to strong air patrols.
  b) No result.
  c) - d): None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) CG 79:  Group proceeding further South.  Reconnaissance brought no result.  Fresh reconnaissance is planned.
  b) At the orders of the Naval War Staff, 4 further boats were sent into the Eastern Mediterranean.
    U 95 - 557 - 562 - 558, which were already East of Gibraltar, were given orders to this effect.  The operational area in the West Mediterranean will at present be patrolled only by one boat - U 652, since boats on their first operational trip are not entrusted to proceed through the Straits of Gibraltar.
  c) None.
  d) All southern boats have sufficient fuel for:
    1) Passage home. They have been ordered to take over survivors in groups and to return home at maximum possible speed.  It has been arranged that large Italian U-boats shall be sent to meet them.
    2) refuelling may only be effected at present in "Gata", on orders of Naval War Staff, in cases of emergency.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:  - . -
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
       
       
- 245 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
3. December 1941.
 
     
 
I.
U 43
-
CF 78  
U 126
-
EJ 95  
U 332
- Op(CG 85)  
U 562
- CH 76
 
67
-
Op(CG 95)  
127
-
AF 78  
372
- OP(CG 85)  
566
- AO
 
68
-
CF 61  
129
-
GF 22  
375
- OP(CG 85)  
574
- CF 75
 
69
-
BE 78  
130
-
AN 36  
402
- BE 79  
575
- CF 75
 
71
-
BF 73  
131
-
AM 33  
434
- CF 72  
652
- Op(E. of Gibr.)
 
95
- CH 70  
201
- BE 87  
451
- AM 24  
A
- GF 61
 
96
- CG 54  
206
- BF 75  
453
- Op(CG 85)  
   
 
105
- CF 78  
     
557
- CH 84  
   
 
124
- FT 99  
     
558
- CH 75  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 126 - U 96 - 124 - 129 - 68 - UA
  Sailed:  U 566 - Kiel         Entered Port:  - . -
      U 208 - Brest
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  On CG 79 in area BE.
       
III. Reports on the enemy:
  a) 1) U 453 reported at 0216, 2 destroyers in CG 8647, course 600.  In the operational area West of Gibraltar extensive neutral traffic, no action.
    2) U 558 reported at 1116 that she had been damaged in 2 aircraft night attacks and subsequent depth-charge chase by destroyer.  Returning.
    3) U 96 stopped the Spanish vessel "Cabe de Hornos" and, on enquiry, received instructions to let her proceed.
    4) U 124 sank in FU 7887 an American vessel "Sagadahoc".  This ship had no neutral marks and was proceeding with lights dimmed.
  b)  Without result.
  c) Survivors of the vessel "Fjord" torpedoed by a U-boat were landed on the 3rd of December in Estepona.
  d) None.
       
IV. Current Operations:  a)  -d):  None.
       
V. Reports of sinkings:
    U 124 - 1 ship ("Sagadahoc") sunk.
 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
   
- 246 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
4. December 1941.
 
     
 
I.
U 43
-
CF 88  
U 124
-
GF 25  
U 332
- Op(CG 85)  
U 127
- AM 32
 
67
-
Op(CG 95)  
126
-
EJ 66  
372
- Op(CG 85)  
558
- CG 81
 
68
-
CF 29  
129
-
GF 29  
375
- Op(CG85+88)  
562
- CH 59
 
69
-
CF 21  
130
-
AN 31  
402
- CF 24  
566
- AO
 
71
-
BF 50  
131
-
AM 27  
434
- CF 82  
574
- CF 85
 
95
- CH 59  
201
- CF 26  
452
- AM 18  
575
- CF 85
 
96
- CG 24  
206
- BF ?  
453
- CG 90  
652
- Op(CH75/76)
 
105
- DH 13  
208
  BF  
557
- CM 59  
A
  CF 29
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 124 - 129 - UA - 96 - 69 - 558 - 71 - 126.
  Sailed:  U 568 - St. Nazaire.
  Entered Port:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 562 reported ore ship sunk off Melilla.
    2) U 557 sank vessel "Fjord" East of Gibraltar.
  b)  None.
  c)  According to an intercept message a transport was sunk on the 12th November between Iceland and Ireland.
  d)  None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) - c) None.
  d) 1) The convoy reported by an Italian U-boat on the 4th December at 0200 in CF 1288 was probably the SL 93, which must have left, therefore, 6 days late according to schedule.  Since other SL convoys have been observed also to have been late, it is assumed from now on that there is a new schedule.
    2) Patrol of the area West of Gibraltar has lately been extended.  At present there are always 8 gunboats and 3 destroyers there on patrol.  Between Cape Trafalgar and Scartel there is now a new patrol line.  In the harbor of Gibraltar there are at present about 55 ships.  It is expected, therefore, that the HG convoy, which has been due since the 1st December, will put out very shortly.  Particularly strong air cover at present seems to confirm this.
    3) U 206 - outward-bound - has not reported in spite of twice being instructed to do so.  It is not probable that this boat was sunk by aircraft, since at the time in question no attacks took place on U-boats, according
       
- 247 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
 
 
      To an intercept message.  It is most likely, therefore, that the boat ran on to mines.  See under VI.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:
   U 562 - 1 ore ship sunk
  U 557 - 1 vessel "Fjord" sunk
  U 205 - 1 hit on destroyer probable.
  (Mediterranean).
       
VI. General:
    The loss of U 206 has caused considerable anxiety regarding the mine situation.  Only occasional exploratory sweeps can be carried out outside the prescribed approach routes by Western defences, and outside the outer approach points no searches can be made at all.  An increase in the Western defence forces has, therefore, been requested, but from where they can be taken is not sure.
       
   - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
5. December 1941.
       
I.
U 43
-
CF 97  
U 126
-
EJ 39  
U 375
- Op(CG 85)  
U 568
- BF 50
 
67
-
Op(CG 95)  
127
-
AM 23  
402
- CF 34  
574
- CF 97
 
68
-
FU 74  
129
-
FU 74  
434
- CF 91  
575
- CF 94
 
69
-
BE 88  
130
-
AF 79  
451
- AL 33  
652
- Op(CH 75)
 
71
-
BF 50  
131
-
AM 41  
453
- Op(CG 85)  
A
- FU 78
 
95
- CJ 84  
201
- CF 32  
557
- CH 58  
   
 
96
- BF 75  
208
- BF 48  
558
- CG 51  
   
 
105
- DH 22  
332
- Op(CG 85)  
562
- CJ 84  
   
 
124
  FU 74  
372
- Op(CG 85)  
566
  AN 35  
   
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 126 - 129 - 124 - 96 - 71 - 201 - 69 - 402 - 558 - UA.
  Sailed:  - . -         Entered Port: U 71 - St. Nazaire.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 434 reported single vessel in CF 9252, course 250.
    2) Situation report:  U 375 reported from area around CG 9482:  By day strong patrols by flying boats, by night destroyers.  Small isolated neutral vessels.
  b)  None.
  c) 1) At 1830 a large troop transport with 3 destroyers put out from Gibraltar to the West.
    2) The British Admiralty gave a U-boat warning for CG 9822.
  d)  None.
       
   
- 248 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
IV. Current Operations:
  a) It is intended to operate with Group "Steuben" and the boats West of Gibraltar against the awaited HG convoy.
  b) None.
  c) refuelling "Bernardo" is planned for U 575 from the 11th to the 12th December.
  d) According to a report of U 68 all 4 southern boats have met in FU7486 and are returning each with 104 survivors their fuel supplies being as follows:
   
U 124
- 140 cbm.  
U 129
- 125 cbm.
U 68
- 160 cbm.  
U A
- 190 cbm.
    The boats have been ordered to proceed to square EJ 40. It is planned that 260 survivors in all shall be taken over there by Italian U-boats in the period from 15th to 17th December.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:
 
U 81 (Mediterranean) - 1 hit each on tanker and freighter probable, 1 destroyer apparently heavily damaged.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
6. December 1941.
 
 
 
I.
U 43
-
CG 77  
U 127
-
AM 18  
U 402
- CF 33  
U 574
- CG 77
 
67
-
Op(CG 95)  
129
-
FU 74  
434
- CF 92  
575
- CG 74
 
68
-
FU 74  
130
-
AN 11  
451
- AL 39  
652
- Op(CG 75)
 
69
-
BE 95  
131
-
Al 69  
453
- Op(CG 85)  
A
- FU 74
 
95
-
CJ 75  
201
-
BE 98  
557
- CJ 76  
   
 
96
- BF 50  
208
- BE 96  
558
- CG 21  
   
 
105
- DH 32  
332
- Op(CG 85)  
562
- CJ 95  
   
 
124
- FU 74  
372
- Op(CG 85)  
566
- Kr-sand  
   
 
126
- DT 99  
375
- Op(CG 85)  
568
- BF 48        
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 126 - 129 - UA - U 68 - 69 - 402 - 96 - 201 - 558 - 124.
  Sailed:  U 374 - Brest         Entered Port: U 96 - St. Nazaire.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 126 reported in DH 6115 a large tanker escorted by 2 destroyers,  Course N.E.  The boat broke off pursuit since she had only 1 Diesel in action for half speed.
    2) U 332 was bombed by a Sunderland in CG 8298 and subsequently pursued by destroyers.
       
   
- 249 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  b) None.
  c) Gibraltar gave a U-boat warning for area CG 8643.
  d) Apparently a U-boat chase is being carried out in area CG 9586 by 2 groups of minesweepers with the aid of aircraft.  During the day both groups operate separately and join together at night.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) None.
  b) Former Group "Steuben" has been assigned the following operational areas off Gibraltar:
    U 43 - CG 81 and 82 and 83 West third.
    U 574 and 434 - CG 57 - 58 and 59, concentrating in the East.
    U 105 patrol line in area of squares CG 8740 and 8770 to the East up to longitude of CG 9855.
    B.d.U. has decided to send 4 further boats through the Straits of Gibraltar, in spite of the fact that some of the boats are on their first operational run or have only a limited number of charts on board.
    U 208 and 568 have been ordered to proceed at fast cruising speed to area CG.
    U 372 and U 375 have been assigned new operational areas East of Gibraltar up to CH 76, right edge.  The boats will be permitted to withdraw, if defence forces are strong, up to 30 East.
    U 453 will take up the operational area of U 372 and U 375, i.e. patrol line in area of squares CG 8580 and 8820.
  c) U 434 and U 574 requested, upon enquiry, refuelling in Bernardo.
  d) 1) U 68 reported transfer of survivors unnecessary, since boats are able to dive and provisions will suffice until they reach base.  Since B.d.U. wishes to ensure the possibility of a longer surface run (Biscay) it has been ordered that the transfer be carried out as planned.
    2) U 562 has passed the Straits of Messina and, therefore, come operationally under the command of the Senior Officer, U-boats, Italy.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:  - . -
     
 
 
 
- 250 -
 
     

 

     
     
 
7. December 1941.
 
     
 
I.
U 43
-
CG 76  
U 127
-
AM 45  
U 374
- BF 50  
U 566
- Kr-sand
 
67
-
Op(CG 95)  
129
-
FT 37  
375
- Op(CG 85)  
568
- CG 13
 
68
-
FT 37  
130
-
AM 33  
402
- BE  
574
- CG 73
 
69
-
BF 40  
131
-
AL 99  
434
- CG 72  
575
- CG 48
 
95
-
CJ ?  
201
-
BE  
451
- AL 65  
652
- Op(CH 75)
 
105
- CG 79  
208
- CG 19  
453
- Op(CG 85)  
A
- FT 37
 
124
- FT 37  
332
- Op(CG 85)  
557
- CJ 86  
-  
 
126
- DH-37  
372
- Op(CG 85)  
558
- BF 50  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 126 - 124 - 129 - UA - 402 - 201 - 69 - 558.
  Sailed:  U 573 - St. Nazaire.         Entered Port: U 558 - Brest.
      U 654 - Bergen
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a)  U 375 reported from CG 9476 aircraft bombs, hydrophone hunt and passage through the Straits of Gibraltar not successful.  The boat is waiting to make a fresh attempt on a more favorable night.
  b)  None.
  c) (Special) The British Admiralty informed merchant vessels that survivors of the steamer sunk on the 1st December in R = 030 55' W.  L = 270 53' S., are in about 15 lifeboats, possibly armed and escorted by U-boats.  The boats are to be give a very wide berth and reported at once.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a)  None.
  b) 1) 3 further boats, i.e. U 652 - 573 - 374 will be withdrawn for the Eastern Mediterranean.  They have been ordered to proceed to square CO.  refuelling is planned in Messina.
    2) U 453 has been assigned as operational area that East of Gibraltar following motions U 372 and 375.
    3) U 67 will take up, as operational area, patrol line in the area of squares 8580 and 8820 to the East up to longitude of CG 9590.
  c)  For the following boats refuelling is planned in Bernardo:
     U 575 in the night of 11th to 12th December.
     U 434 in the night of 12th to 13th December.
       
   
- 251 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
    U 332 in the night of 13th to 14th December.
    U 574 in the night of 14 to 15th December.
    The boats have been instructed that return to Western France must be ensured even if refuelling fails.
  d) As from 1200 on the 8th December operational control of U-boats in Western Mediterranean will be taken over by Senior Officer U-boats, Italy.  Line of division:  Straits of Gibraltar.
    Therefore, the following will be newly transferred to him:
    U 652 and U 557.  In the Eastern Mediterranean the 23rd U-Flotilla will maintain control for the present.
    U 95 has not reported in spite of repeated instructions.  It must, therefore, be assumed that the boat was probably destroyed in the Straits of Gibraltar.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:  None.
       
VI. General:
  Patrol of the Mediterranean by U-boats at present is again quite unsatisfactory. There are:
  in the eastern Mediterranean, U 431, 565
  in the western Mediterranean, U 652
  underway from the western to the eastern Mediterranean, U 557, 562.
  Seven of the boats scheduled are out of action:
  U 95, 206, 433 certainly or probably lost.
  U 71, 96, 558 and 563 have had to turn back owing to engine trouble or damage by aircraft bombs.  For other boats there has been a delay owing to the increased patrols in the Straits of Gibraltar.  Attempts are being made to increase the numbers in the Mediterranean as soon as possible, thereby taking into account that boats on their first operational run must be expected to pass the Straits of Gibraltar.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
 
 
- 252 -
 
     

 

     
 
8. December 1941
 
     
 
I.
U 43
-
Op(CG81-82)  
U 127
-
AM 75  
U 374
- BF 45  
U 568
- CG 49
 
67
-
CG 94  
129
-
FM 87  
375
- CG 97  
573
- BF 50
 
68
-
FM 87  
130
-
AM 18  
402
- BF 49  
574
- Op(CG57-58)
 
69
-
BF 50  
131
-
AL 90  
434
- Op(CG57-58)  
575
- CG 40
 
86
-
AO  
201
-
BF 46  
451
- AL 95  
652
- CH 81
 
105
- Op(CG 80)  
208
- CG 84  
453
- CG 90  
654
- AF 75
 
124
- FM 87  
332
- Op(CG 85)  
557
- Str.v.Mess.  
A
- FM 87
 
126
- DH 31  
372
  CG 96  
556
- Kr-sand  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 126 - UA - 129 - 124 - 402 - 201 - 69 - 105.
  Sailed:  None.        
  Entered Port: U 69 - St. Nazaire.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance: None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) Convoy No. 18, see IVa.
    2) U 131 reported on the 6th December in AL 2830 a single ship of 6,000 GRT sunk.  Fuel supply 165 cbm, 9 torpedoes left.
  b) None.
  c) Several U-boat warnings West of Gibraltar.
  d) None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) Convoy No. 18:  U 130 - at present proceeding to operational area - sighted at 1225 in AM 1472 a convoy, course West.  Since there are no boats in the direct vicinity and, for the others, operations in the Mediterranean appeared to be more necessary, U 130 was given freedom of attack and ordered not to give any continuous reports of contact.  At 2045 the boat reported pursuit broken off owing to deterioration in weather conditions and that she was continuing passage into the operational area.  The convoy consisted of 2 steamers and 3 corvettes, last course N.W.
  b) None.
  c) U 574 reported fuel supply 16 cbm, and requested earlier refuelling.  U 332 still has 20 cbm, and intends to return on the 10th December.  Contrary to the previous refuelling schedule ordered, this will be laid on for U 574 in the night of 11th to 12th December and for U 575 in the following night.  Further refuelling appears questionable.  A decision regarding this is awaited by the evening of the 10th December.
  d) U 654 reported from AF 78 main periscope swamped.  The boat is returning to Bergen.  U 573 also reported return passage
       
       
       
- 253 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
     since tube 5 is leaking through forward mine securing pin.
    Therefore, a further Mediterranean boat (the eighth) has been delayed.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:
  U 131 - 1 ship of 6,000 GRT sunk
       
VI. General:
  Japan has started hostilities against England and USA - an event of great importance which must also, in a very short time, affect the former restriction of U-boat warfare in the Atlantic.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
9. December 1941.
 
 
 
I.
U 43
-
Op(CG81-82)  
U 129
-
FM 48  
U 375
- CG 90  
U 574
- Op(CG57-58)
 
67
-
Op(CG 85)  
130
-
AM 15  
402
- BF 50  
575
- CG 43
 
68
-
FM 48  
131
-
AL 88  
434
- Op(CG57-58)  
654
- v.Bergen
 
86
-
Kr'sand  
201
-
BF 50  
451
- BE 26  
A
- FM 48
 
105
-
CG 84  
208
-
CG 86  
453
- CG 90  
   
 
124
- FM 48  
332
- Op(CG 85)  
566
- Kr'sand  
   
 
126
- CF 93  
372
- CG 90  
568
- CG 85  
   
 
127
- AM 70  
374
- BE 93  
573
- BF 50  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 126 - UA - 129 - 124 - 402 - 201 - 69 - 105 - 573 - 654.
  Sailed:  U 128 - Kiel    
                U 108 - Lorient
                U 74 - St. Nazaire
   Entered Port: U 402 - U 573 = St. Nazaire
                 U 201 = Brest
                 U 654 = Bergen
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a)  U 332 reported damage from aircraft bombs.  She is returning as no longer fully operational.
  b)  None.
  c) The Admiralty gave a U-boat warning for area FM 19.  (This was in connection with one of the southern boats on return passage).
  d) None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) None.
       
       
- 254 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  b) U 451 - on outward passage from Kiel - reported upon passing 510 N that she only had 71 cbm. of fuel left and was ordered, therefore, to put into Lorient for quick refuelling.
  c) According to a report of the Naval Staff 4 boats ca refuel in Bernardo:
    Order: U 575 will refuel in the night of 11/12 December.
            U 574 will refuel in the night of 12/13 December.
            U 332 will refuel in the night of 13/14 December.
            U 434 will refuel in the night of 14/15 December.
      (refuelling for U 332 will not take place as the boat is returning).  Other times remain the same.
  d) 1) U 453 - 372 - 375 reported passing the Straits of Gibraltar.  They have, therefore come operationally under the command of Senior Officer, U-boats, Italy.
    2) Boats have been instructed by Standing Order No. 14 regarding unrestricted action against the U.S.A. and those countries adhering to the conduct of the U.S.A. towards Germany.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:
  U 652 (Mediterranean) - 1 ship "St. Denis" sunk (Pencil note: unfortunately a mistake as she was a French vessel).
       
VI. General:
  The lifting of all restrictions regarding U.S.A. ships and the so-called Pan-American safety zone has been ordered by the Führer.  Therefore, the whole area of the American coasts will become open for operations by U-boats, an area in which the assembly of ships takes place in single traffic at the few points of departure of Atlantic convoys.  There is an opportunity here, therefore, of intercepting enemy merchant ships under conditions which have ceased almost completely for some time.  Further, there will hardly be any question of an efficient patrol in the American coastal area, at least of a patrol used to U-boats.  Attempts must be made to utilize as quickly as possible these advantages, which will disappear very shortly, and to achieve a "spectacular success" on the American coast.
    The following come into question as the main points of attack for such U-boat operations:
     
  Sydney Roads 2,200 miles
  Halifax 2,400 miles
  Bermudas 3,000 miles
  New York 3,000 miles
  Galveston 4,600 miles
  Aruba 4,000 miles
  Trinidad 3,600 miles (approach point for single traffic coming from South and bunkering station).
       
 
 
 
- 255 -
 
     

 

     
     
 
  Boats of Type IX will have available, when operating in these areas, approximately the following fuel supplies actually in the operational area.
       
   
at a distance of
IXB
IXC
 
 
 
2,200 miles (Sydney)
90 cbm
140 cbm
 
3,000 miles (New York)
60 cbm
110 cbm
 
4,000 miles (Aruba)
25 cbm
65 cbm
 
4,600 miles (Galveston)              -
40 cbm
 
       
  Operations by Type IXB boats, therefore, are not advisable at all the points mentioned.
  I have requested from the Naval War Staff release of 12 boats type IX for such undertakings, since these boats are anyway not so suited for the Mediterranean, Gibraltar area and also for attacking the Gibraltar convoys, which are the most strongly escorted, and since for this purpose a considerable number of medium-sized boats will be ready for operations shortly.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
10. December 1941.
 
 
 
I.
U 43
-
Op(CG81-82)  
U 124
-
FL 36  
U 208
- CG 90  
U 574
- CG 50
 
67
-
Op(CG 85)  
126
-
CG 41  
332
- CG 80  
575
- CG 50
 
68
-
FL 36  
127
-
BE 23  
374
- CG 12  
A
- FL 36
 
74
-
BF 50  
128
-
AO  
434
- Op(CG 57)  
   
 
86
-
AN 28  
129
-
FL 36  
451
- BE 61  
   
 
105
- CG 49  
130
- AL 37  
566
- AN 29  
   
 
108
- BF 50  
131
- BE 24  
568
- CG 90  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 126 - 129 - 124 - UA - 105 - 332 - 451.
  Sailed:  U 107 - 77 Lorient
                U 432 - 569 St. Nazaire.
  Entered Port:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance: None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) Convoy No. 19 see IVa.
  b) None.
  c) 1) British U-boat "Regent" is to pass on one of the next few days at 1000 or 1100 square BF 7795, middle of lower edge.
    2) According to unconfirmed reports the aircraft carrier "Victorious" is to proceed to Gibraltar as a replacement for the sunk aircraft carrier "Ark Royal".
  d) None.
       
       
       
- 256 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
V. Current Operations:
  a) Convoy No. 19:  U 130 made contact at 1900 with an eastward-bound convoy, but lost contact after 2 hours on account of unfavorable weather conditions.  After making contact again the boat was driven off at 0155 by destroyers and proceeded on return passage to Lorient - as ordered before sighting the convoy.
    Result:  1 freighter of 7,000 GRT sunk, and 2 hits obtained on a tanker.
    No other boats were in the vicinity for operations; owing to operations in the Mediterranean this was also not intended.
  b) U 43 following departure of U 332, has been assigned operational area in a patrol line in area of squares CG 8520 and 8550 to the East up to longitude of CG 9560.
    The following are now still West of Gibraltar:  U 67 - 434 - 43.  Since departure of the last two is expected soon owing to fuel supplies, U 108 - 131 - 127 have been ordered to proceed at high cruising speed to square CG 84, since medium-sized boats are not available to reinforce this area according to the orders of the Naval War Staff.
    The urgent need to provide the number of boats ordered for the Mediterranean and Gibraltar area, entails operations by boats which are only suited for this to a certain extent in view of type and capacity.
    U 130 is scheduled for operations in the area round Newfoundland and will proceed at maximum cruising speed to Lorient for refuelling.
  c) In order to intercept the British U-boat "Regent" (see intercept message III c), boats in the vicinity were requested to report their position.  These were as follows:  U 105 in BF 79; U 574 - CG 25; U 332 - CG 28.  Since U-105 was in a favorable position and was also on return passage, she was ordered to operate against the British U-boat.  The remaining boats are to by-pass the waiting position of U-105 in a radius of 30 miles.  U 105 reported at 0113 that the operation could not be carried out owing to fuel supplies.  THereupon U 332 was ordered to carry it out.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:
  U 130 - 1 freighter of 7,000 GRT sunk
  U 130 - 1 tanker - 2 hits.
       
VI. General:
  The Naval War Staff has released for operations off the American coasts only 6 large boats - since reduction in the
       
 
 
     
 
- 257 -
 
     

 

     
     
 
  Mediterranean and Gibraltar area in spite of only limited suitability of the large boats for this, does not appear to Naval War Staff to be advisable.
  The following points should be considered for operations by these boats - they will be ready for operations between 16th and 25th December in France.
  Their object must be to intercept single vessels and to make use of the enemy's inexperience and the fact that they are not used to operations by U-boats. For this purpose operations must not and cannot be too massed, rather the boats should spread to such an extent that good prospects of success are ensured at one point; they may not however, spread out to such an extent that the one boat may achieve good success but that, considered as a whole, the area is spoiled for operations in a wide radius without chances of success having been exhausted. Since there are only 6 boats available, all places mentioned cannot be patrolled in any case.  If the first operations by these boats are made only in the North, i.e. from Halifax to New York, there is a prospect that in the area in the South, i.e. Aruba-Trinidad the conditions will remain unaltered and will promise success at a later date.
  On the other hand, if operations were carried out in the South the northern area, which lies closer to the German departure bases, would certainly also be spoiled.
  The decision must, therefore, be made in favor of operations in the northern area, where 3 boats can be sent in, both off Halifax and New York.  It is only regrettable that there are not sufficient boats available to strike a truly "spectacular blow".
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
11. December 1941.
       
 
 
I.
U 43
-
Op(CG 85)  
U 107
-
BF  
U 130
- AL 39  
U 451
- BF 40
 
67
-
Op(CG 85)  
108
-
BF 74  
131
- BE 55  
566
- AN 20
 
68
-
FE 71  
124
-
FE 71  
208
- CG 90  
568
- CG 90
 
74
-
BF 48  
126
-
CG 12  
332
- CG 25  
569
- BF
 
77
-
BF  
127
-
BE 61  
374
- CG 42  
574
- CG 22
 
86
- AN 20  
128
- AN 30  
432
- BF  
575
- CG 27
 
105
- BF 76  
129
- FE 71  
434
- Op(CG 57)  
A
- FE 71
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - UA - 126 - 124 - 129 - 332 - 105 - 451 - 130.
  Sailed:  U 83 - Brest        Entered Port:  - . -
      U 573 - St. Nazaire
      U 576 - Bergen
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
       
       
       
       
- 258 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) Convoy No. 20 see IVa.
    2) U 374 requested immediate aircraft aid, as she was being chased in CH 7441 by 4 destroyers.  U 374 later sank 2 escorts in the Ceuta area.  (Aircraft aid was not possible in CH).
  b) None.
  c) 1) The American vessel "Exambion" will be ready for departure in Lisbon on the 11th.
    2) According to an Admiralty report the SC 48 (convoy No. 3 was attacked on the 16th October five times.  At least 8 ships were sunk.
    3) On the 14th December a large British convoy is expected to arrive in Portugal from Gibraltar.
  d) None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) Convoy No. 20:
     U 434 sighted at 0958 in CG 5588 a convoy, course 1600, speed 6 knots, consisting of 25 vessels with strong escort forces.
     The boat was ordered to remain up to the convoy as far as possible and to guide U 43 and U 67 which were in the vicinity.  COntact was maintained with breaks until 2200.  The boat reported at 2212:  Am close behind the convoy in square CG 8262 - fuel 1 cbm.  Since "Gata" was not available the boat was reminded, in view of low fuel supplies, that return to "Bernardo" had to be ensured.
    U 434 suspected course to be South since fall of darkness, by-passed the escort and took up waiting position in CG 8268.  U 43 suspected at 2118 in CG 8229 forward escorts.  She fired a torpedo on a destroyer which failed.  This boat had only one torpedo left and started on return passage towards morning, owing to fuel supplies.
     From U 67 there have been no reports.  Since there were no other boats available and the convoy was very close to Gibraltar, further contact with the enemy was not expected.
  b) In order to strengthen the area off Tobruck and Alexandria, U 74 - 569 - 432 - 77 were ordered to proceed at fast cruising speed to square CO.  refuelling is planned in Messina.
     U 107 was assigned to square CG 84.
  c)  refuelling in Bernardo apparently according to plan.
       
 
 
 
- 259 -
 
     

 

     
     
 
  d) 1) U 568 and U 374 have passed the Straits of Gibraltar and have, therefore come operationally under the command of Senior Officer, U-boats, Italy.
    2) UA was ordered to report her position, day's run, and arrival in EJ 40, and also whether all 4 boats were proceeding together.  The boat reported her position in ES 83, day's run 300 miles and time of arrival midnight on the 14th December.
      UA was proceeding alone and gave the estimated day's run of the others as at least 260 miles.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:
  U 374 - 2 escorts sunk.
  U 43 - 3 ships (2 known) = 25,000 GRT sunk, of these 2 already reported earlier.
       
VI. General:
  a) The heavy concentration of ships in Gibraltar seems to indicate that a convoy will very soon put out bound for England (2 have already been cancelled).
     For attacks on this one there is only one boat available, in view of the return of U 43 and 434.  Further boats - 127, 131, 108, 574 - will not reach the area for a few days.  The small number of boats here is certainly also the reason why no success was achieved against Convoy No. 20.
  b) I have stated my views on the present situation as follows to the Naval War Staff:
    1) The main task is to increase the number of U-boats in the area Tobruck-Alexandria.
    2) As regards the Gibraltar area, I consider the main task that of attacking HG and OG convoys, since British operations against Algiers, etc. seems to me at present hardly likely.
    3) Boats type IX are not very suited to operations in the Mediterranean and Gibraltar area; they are more easily located than Type VII, more complex in design and, therefore, less able to stand up to depth charge pursuit than these and more unwieldy in depth-keeping.  Their main advantage, that of larger fuel supplies, on the other hand is not suited to the Mediterranean and Gibraltar area.
       
   - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
 
 
- 260 -
 
     

 

     
 
12. December 1941.
 
     
 
I.
U 43
-
CG 80  
U 107
-
BF 49  
U 131
- BE 95  
U 573
- BF
 
67
-
CG 80  
108
-
CG 16  
208
- CH ?  
574
- Vigo
 
68
-
FD 38  
124
-
FD 38  
332
- CG 20  
575
- CG 28
 
74
-
BF 77  
126
-
BE  
432
- BF 48  
576
- AN 20
 
77
-
BF 40  
127
-
BE 95  
434
- CG 80  
A
- ES 59
 
83
- BF  
128
- AN 31  
451
- BF 50  
   
 
86
- AF 78  
129
- FD 38  
566
- AN  
   
 
105
- BF 80  
130
- AL 65  
569
- BF 81  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 124 - 126 - 129 - UA - 68 - 332 - 105 - 451 - 130
  Sailed:  - . -
   Entered Port:  U 451 - Lorient.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 574 reported unknown U-boat in CG 2374, probably U 575.
    2) U 67 reported in the night of 11/12 in CG 8292, 2 destroyers, 1 escort, 1 M.T.B.  Misfire on destroyer, no steamers.  In CG 84, 86, 89 and eastward therefrom strong escorts.  Considerable numbers of small steamers, neutral marks, course 200.
  b)  None.
  c)  The escorts sunk by U 374 have been confirmed by an intercept message.
  d)  Number of ships in Gibraltar: 64.  The ships forming the convoy are coaling.  The convoy may be expected, therefore, to leave in the near future.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) None.
  b) 1) U 574 - 575 - 434 were ordered, after refuelling, to proceed at fast cruising speed to CG 84.  The intention is to attack the awaited HG convoy with strongest possible forces.
    2) U 67 and 208 were requested to give their position.
      Report of U 67, see IIIa.
  c) U 574 - 575 reported refuelling Bernardo carried out.
    U 575 will have to return owing to damage sustained during depth charge pursuit on the 9th December.
  d) U 129 reported, on instructions, position in ES 8834, day's run 252 miles.  U 68 was in ES 5695, day's run 270 miles.
       
   
- 261 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
    The following order was given to the southern boats:
    Point of rendezvous UA with "Torelli" on 14th December as from 1400 in EJ 14.  The following rendezvous are also planned:
    U 129 with "Finzi" at midday on the 15th in latitude of EJ 14.
    U 68 with Tazolli" on the morning of the 16th in latitude of DT 78.
    U 124 with "Calvi" on the morning of the 16th in latitude of DT 76.
    Transfer of survivors:
    UA 50 men, other boats 70 men each.
    Carrying out of undertaking to be reported upon passing latitude of DT 25.
    In case the boats have not met 48 hours after the time laid down, beacon signals are to be sent out at various wave lengths.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
13. December 1941.
       
 
 
I.
43
-
CG 51  
U 107
-
BF 78  
U 131
- CG 84  
U 574
- CG 51
 
67
-
CG 80  
108
-
CG 49  
208
- CH ?  
575
- CG 22
 
68
-
ES 52  
124
-
ES 43  
332
- BF 84  
576
- AF 78
 
74
-
CG 27  
126
-
BF 50  
432
- BF 77  
A
- EJ 79
 
77
-
BF 77  
127
-
CG 19  
434
- CG 80  
-  
 
83
- BF 48  
128
- AF 79  
566
- AF 78  
-  
 
86
- AM 32  
129
- ES 43  
569
- BF 71  
-  
 
105
- BF 50  
130
- AL 99  
573
- BF 73  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 126 - 129 - UA - 124 - 332 - 105 - 575 - 43 - 130.
  Sailed:  U 202 - Brest
      U 581 - Kiel
   Entered Port:  U 105 - 126 = Lorient.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) None.
  b) None.
  c) 1) British aircraft reported at 1300:  "Am over enemy U-boat in CH 7539".
       
   
- 262 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
    2) British U-boat "Regent" should already have put into Gibraltar.
    3) 10 ships put into Lisbon on the 11th December.  These were probably part of the convoy (No. 20) reported by U 434 on the 11th December.
  d) None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) None.
  b) 1) Boats newly arriving off Gibraltar have been ordered to the following operational areas:  U 574 - patrol line in area of square CG 8520 and 8550 to the East up to longitude of CG 9550.  U 108 - square CG 87; U 131 - CG 84; U 127 - CG 81.
    2) U 332 was ordered to continue return passage.  ("Regent" already put into Gibraltar according to intercept message).
  c)  None.
  d) 1) Since U 129 reported a lower supply of fuel than assumed and the Italian U-boat "Calvi" could not be at the appointed rendezvous until evening on the 16th owing to engine trouble, the following order was given:  U 129 rendezvous with "Finzi" as from 1000 on the 16th in square EH 66 middle.  If technically possible take over fuel from "Finzi".  U 124 and "Calvi" do not need to reach the latitude ordered until 1000 on the 17th December.
    2) U 208 has not reported in spite of several instructions to do so.  This boat must be assumed lost.  There is at present no information regarding destruction.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:
  U 431 (Eastern Mediterranean) 1 tanker torpedoed.
  U 453 (Western Mediterranean) 1 ship (Badalona) sunk.
       
VI. General:
  With the probable loss of U 208, passage through the Straits of Gibraltar or operations in the Mediterranean have already cost 3 boats (U 433, 95, 208), regarding which it must be assumed that they were lost, in or in the vicinity of the Straits of Gibraltar.  As was anticipated, conditions there have become very difficult and emphasis is therefore laid on the necessity for repair facilities in Italy, as required by B.d.U. in letter Group Command 645/41 Secret of the 5th November 1941, in order to avoid the dangerous return through the Straits of Gibraltar for repairs in French harbors.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
 
 
- 263 -
 
     

 

     
 
14. December 1941.
 
     
 
I.
U 43
-
CG 27  
U 107
-
CG 27  
U 131
- Op(CG 84)  
U 573
- BF 77
 
67
-
Op(CG 85)  
108
-
Op(CG 87)  
202
- BF 50  
574
- Op(CG 85)
 
68
-
EJ 79  
124
-
ES 12  
332
- BF 78  
575
- BF 70
 
74
-
CG 57  
127
-
Op(CG 81)  
432
- CG 51  
576
- AM 31
 
77
-
CG 51  
128
-
AF 77  
434
- CG 25  
581
- AO
 
83
- BE 77  
129
- EJ 75  
566
- AM 31  
A
- EJ 41
 
86
- AM 24  
130
- BE 39  
569
- CG 19  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - UA - 129 - 124 - 332 - 575 - 43 - 130
  Sailed:  - . -
  Entered Port:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) Convoy No. 21 and report of U 77 on 4 tankers and 2 destroyers, see IVa.
  b) None.
  c) 1) In view of several U-boat sightings by British aircraft the British Admiralty gave out U-boat warnings for area West of Gibraltar.  In CH 7612 also a U-boat was sighted.
    2) The British tanker "British Confidence" was said to have been attacked in AL 1848 by a surfaced U-boat.  If the position is correct, this could not have been a German boat.  U 86 was at the time in question in approximately the same latitude but 100 further East.
  d) Convoy HG 77 passed Europa Point at 1825 and Tarifa at 2045.  It consisted of the following:  32 freighters, 1 aircraft depot ship "Unicorn", 3 destroyers, several corvettes and 1 submarine.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) Convoy No. 21.  Upon receipt of the first report of departure the following boats were sent in to operate and assembled into Group "Seeräuber":  U 67 - 108 - 131 - 127 - 574 and 107.
    Order:  Group "Seeräuber", if no contact made up then, to take up a patrol line at 1700 on the 15th December from CG 8375 to CG 8948.
    Sequence:  U 107 - 127 - 574 - 67 - 108.  Until then freedom of action.
    With this patrol line the convoy could be intercepted, with a speed of only 7 knots, shortly before darkness fell.  Attempts to approach nearer to Gibraltar were not made since:
       
       
   
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    1) It was not certain whether the boats could arrive there.
    2) According to a report from U 67 operations could hardly be carried out there owing to patrols being too strong.
    3) Even if the convoy were intercepted in the morning nearer to Gibraltar, the boats would be forced to submerge and by dark would have dropped far astern.
  At 2305 U 74 - under way to CH - sighted the convoy in CG 9581, course West, speed slow.  No further reports were received.
    U 77 reported at 0305 on the 15th December 4 tankers and 2 destroyers in CG 9824, course S.W., speed 10 knots.
  Both boats were ordered to utilize the slightest chances of attack, to withdraw at latest before dawn and to proceed further to CH.
  U 77 attacked at 0430, sank a freighter of 5,000 GRT and twice torpedoed a tanker of 9,000 GRT.  Position CG 9843.  There was air cover over the convoy.  Last course, West.  The boat proceeded to CH.
  It is not assumed that the two sightings reported concerned only one convoy, since, firstly, positions and times differed very much and secondly, it appeared from an intercept message regarding number of ships in the harbor of Gibraltar that, apart from the convoy, 4 further ships must have put out.
  b) None.
  c) No report yet regarding refuelling carried out by U 434.
  d) 1) The following final rendezvous were arranged:
      U 68 with "Tazzoli" as from 1000 on the 16th December in DT 78, middle, U 124 with "Calvi" as from 1000 on the 17th December in DT 76, middle.
    2) U 453 reported returning.  There is, therefore, only one boat left - U 375 - East of Gibraltar.  Further boats are approaching.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
15. December 1941.
       
 
 
I.
U 43
-
BF 49  
U 107
-
CG 80  
U 131
- CG 80  
U 573
- CG 51
 
67
-
CG 80  
108
-
CG 80  
202
- BF 45  
574
- CG 80
 
68
-
EJ 45  
124
-
EJ 49  
332
- BF 81  
575
- BF 81
 
74
-
CG 90  
127
-
CG 80  
432
- CG 82  
576
- AM 25
 
77
-
CG 90  
128
-
AM 31  
434
- CG 20  
581
- AN 36
 
83
- CG 27  
129
- EH 93  
566
- AM 23  
A
- EJ 10
 
86
- AM 18  
130
- BF 46  
569
- CG 54  
   
 
 
 
 
 
  On Return Passage:  U 124 - 129 - 68 - UA - 43 - 130 - 332 - 575
  Sailed:  U 451 - Lorient
      U 654 - Bergen
  Entered Port:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  On convoy No. 21 in area West of Gibraltar.
       
       
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III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) U 566 sighted at 1218 in AE 9777 2 large vessels, course 3300, speed 6 knots.  After pursuit lasting four hours, contact was lost.  Weather:  wind West-South-West 8, seaway 7.
  b) The convoy being searched for was not found.  At 1945 in CG 9476:  3 tankers, 4 guardships, course 2100, speed slow.  Visibility 100 hm.
  c) A British steamer reported from AL 5229, leak in engine room, ship sinking.  The leak was probably caused by the seaway, since there were none of our boats in the vicinity.
  d) Italian observer in Tangiers stated that Convoy (No. 21) had returned in the night of 14th - 15th December and was passing through the Straits with course East.  Up to now there is no confirmation of this, but it is very unlikely according to the number of ships in the harbor and the situation.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) Convoy:  No reports of sightings were received from the boats.  The air reconnaissance sent out has achieved nothing.  Control considers the reconnaissance line report (see IIId) as very unlikely.  The operation against the convoy is being continued.  U 434 will join Group "Seeräuber".  In order to have boats in the area of the air reconnaissance planned for the 16th December and in order to prevent them falling behind the convoy a patrol line has been ordered for 0900 on the 16th December from CG 8171 to 8744.  Sequence:  U 434 - 107 - 127 - 574 - 131 - 67 - 108.  7.5 knots has been laid down as the maximum possible speed of advance.
  b) U 573 was ordered to proceed at high cruising speed to the area East of Gibraltar.
  c) U 434 reported refuelling carried out according to plan in Bernardo.
  d) None.
       
V. Reports of Sinkings:
 
U 557 1 cruiser sunk
U 77 1 freighter (5,000 GRT) sunk
U 77 1 tanker (9,000 GRT) torpedoed.
       
       
                                                                (Signed)        DÖNITZ.
 
 
 
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