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

1 - 15 December 1943

PG30336

     
     
 
1.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
Op(EW 80)
U 230
-
CG 55
U 488
-
BE 98
U 648
-
BF 77
 
86
-
Op(CF 34)
238
-
CF 31
510
-
EH 12
653
-
BE 16
 
92
-
BE 16
262
-
CG 13
515
-
Op(EK 40)
667
-
BE 54
 
103
-
ER 36
269
-
Op(AL 75)
516
-
Op(EB 80)
672
-
Op(AL 18)
 
107
-
CF 37
274
-
BF 70
518
-
BF 61
714
-
BF 85
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
280
-
BF 70
530
-
Op(EB 60)
734
-
Op(AL 47)
 
154
-
EF 75
282
-
BF 70
536
-
BF 57
741
-
AF 87
 
155
-
ER 12
284
-
AF 79
537
-
BD 56
761
-
Op(AL 10)
 
170
-
EH 12
311
-
AF 87
538
-
Op(CF 30)
764
-
CF 29
 
172
-
CG 36
333
-
BF 68
541
-
Op(AK 66)
801
-
Op(AL 72)
 
178
-
MU 82
358
-
Op(CF 34)
542
-
Op(CF 30)
843
-
Op(CF 34)
 
190
-
Op(FB 46)
364
-
AN 24
543
-
Op(AL 48)
849
-
GF 33
 
193
-
Op(DL 30)
391
-
Op(CF 26)
544
-
Op(AL 41)
850
-
AE 82
 
211
-
BF 70
415
-
BE 51
586
-
BF 78
962
-
Op(AL 74)
 
212
-
BF 84
420
-
BF 70
600
-
Op(CF 30)
963
-
BF 57
 
218
-
BF 85
421
-
Op(AK 69)
618
-
CF 28
967
-
BF 65
 
219
-
EH 12
424
-
Op(CF 37)
625
-
Op(AL 42)
969
-
BF 77
 
226
-
BF 70
471
-
AN 28
629
-
AE 85
972
-
AO
 
228
-
CF 37      
976
-
AF 79
981
-
AN 28
 
  On Return Passage:  U 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 211 - 212 - 218 - 226 - 274 - 280 - 282 - 333 - 420 - 488 - 518 - 536 - 537 - 586 - 648 - 714 - 764 - 963 - 967 - 969.
  Entered Port:  U 518 - Lorient;  U 967 - St. Nazaire;  U 333 - La Pallice.
  Sailed:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  For Group "Weddigen" on south-bound convoy KMS 34 in area S.W. of Ireland.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 516 sank altogether 17,000 GRT in the area off Colon.  The requested refueling cannot be carried out as there are no tankers available.
    2) U 764 observed at dusk in approximate position CF 26 a noise, the bearing of which was constant.  The Commanding Officer presumed this to be a noise buoy.
    3) U 843 was attacked by an aircraft at 0444 in CF 3160. No report up to now.
    4) U 761 reported continuous patrol by 2 destroyers in area AL 1760 and 1750.
  b)  The convoy was not found.
  c) 1) 2 U-boats sighted in positions not deciphered (probably attack on U 843).
    2) British units were located in BF 12, BF 23, AM 43, AL 66.
    3) Report on unknown warship in FL 2467.
  d)  None.
       
- 343 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
IV. Current Operations:
  a) None.
  b) Further objective for U 629 is AL 19, for U 850 the area round Cape Town.
  c) U 103 will refuel from U 219, as from 1000 on 3 December, in EH 8255, for return at economical speed to Bergen.
    It is intended that U 219 shall later give up reserve fuel to U 172 in about position DG 70.
  d) None.
       
V. Reports of Success:
  U 516                ? ships                17,000 GRT.
       
VI. General:
  Use of T 5 (Zaunkönig):
  1) Position on 1 December 1943:
   
a) Fired up to now
71
 
  Hits from these
40
       = 56%
  Misfires, reason known
15
 
  Misfires, reason unknown
7
 
  Failures
9
 (5 of these tube-runners, 3 of these premature, 1 man killed).
    b) Sinkings:
      30 destroyers and 2 probably sunk
      1 U-boat
      7 freighters, approximately 35,000 GRT.
  2) It is not clear why there has been an increase in misfires compared with the initial successes.  In this connection the report of the Commanding Officers must be awaited.  The evaluation of the first 50 firings on this basis showed an almost complete explanation for all misfires, the reason for which was unknown up to then.  Investigation is being made as to whether the decrease in efficiency of the testing personnel which has necessarily arisen owing to the increased number of testing stations, can be the reason for the increased causes of failure.  There is still great confidence in this weapon in operational areas.
  3) In view of several reports from boats it is suspected that the enemy is employing defensive measures in the form of noise buoys against the T 5.  Noises have been reported superposed to the propeller noises, and in some cases of a higher pitch, such as continuous heavy rattle, singing note, heavy humming with cracks like an overloaded spring.  It seems premature to order a countermeasure on the basis of this scanty information.
 
 
 
- 344 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
     Further observations are awaited.  Boats all have appropriate instructions.
  4)  The increase in T 5 supplies for each boat, planned for December, must be postponed by about 1 1/2 months, since essential parts for manufacture must be sent from areas exposed to bombing, and therefore, there will be an interval in the manufacture of the torpedoes for operations.  Previous supplies (4 for each boat operating in the Atlantic, 3 for each in home waters and 4 - 6 for each in the Mediterranean) will, however, probably be maintained with the present supplies of torpedoes even during this interval.
  Flak armament of the Boats - Situation 1 December 1943:
  A. The following is a survey of the situation of Flak armament as well as an appreciation of the measures effected up to now (see War Diary of Flag Officer Commanding U-boats of 16th June 1943. The following are dealt with separately:
    1) 2 cm. quadruple
    2) 2 cm. twin
    3) 3.7 cm. automatic (M 42) including ammunition
    4) Bridge armor
    5) Conning towers with guns in forward direction
    6) Use of rockets
    7) Flak U-boats.
  B. 1) 2 cm. Quadruple
      After the reconversion of all U-boats to Coning Tower IV began in June 1943, as from August 1943 there was no longer any boats proceeding out for operations without having been converted.  Experience soon showed that the quadruple in its first form (Army quadruple) had serious technical drawbacks and that its construction was too weak to stand up to the sea.  In addition it was seen that the 2 cm.  Quadruple, in spite of the best ammunition was too small to combat enemy aircraft successfully from the tactical or technical point of view, and the manufacture of an improved Quadruple (M 43) also did not alter matters.  It was only possible in a very few cases to shoot down an aircraft which had been fired on.
    2) 2 cm. Twin
      The first 40 Twin mountings were delivered on the 15th July 1943 for erection on the upper platform.  Further deliveries ensured that practically no boats without twin mountings were putting out for operations as from October 1943.  The weapon was considered to be very good in operational areas. It is perfect from the technical point of view, easily movable and serviceable.  The only disadvantage is that the caliber is too small.  The twin mountings were at first erected on board without any gun shield in view of the lack of space.  Experiences in operations, however, made the provisions of gun shields necessary.  This was only possible by separating the two twin-guns by, in all, 30 cm., a measure which was ordered in October 1943.
 
 
 
- 345 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
    3) 3.7 cm. Flak M 42 (Automatic)
      This weapon was first put on 4 boats at the beginning of October 1943 in its initial form suitable for U-boats (serviced by 3 men).
      On 15 October 1943, without waiting for experiences, the general exchange was ordered of all Quadruples for the 3.7 cm. Automatic.  Up to 1 December 1943 it was possible to equip 18 boats in all with this gun.  As from 1 December all boats based in the West will be equipped with this gun, and as from 10 December all operational boats in home waters.  The only experiences to hand up to now are based on those of one boat (U 441) which took a favorable view of the gun as a whole.  All boats will be equipped from the first with the best available ammunition (Mine grenade C 36) which is very much superior in effect to that of the 2 cm. mine grenade.  The mine grenade 36 has a tracer up to about 20 hm., the projectile is self destructive between 35 and 40 hm.  Self-destruction is considered necessary for the following reasons even when used by U-boats:
      a)  Frightening the enemy by bursts in the air.
      b)  Checking the distance to the target, since the tracer only goes 20 hm.
      There is also the fact that the part of the trajectory lying behind the point of self-destruction has no ballistic value.
      No alteration has been made in the conning tower, form IV, by the erection of the 3.7.cm. Automatic.  This conning tower has proved to be good.  The lower platform can be occupied in seas up to 4.  One problem which still remains is the supply of ammunition of the lower guns through the upper ones which are close together.  The solution of this by erecting ready-use containers is practical but their contents do not suffice for any lengthy engagements.
      U-boat armament at the present, therefore, consists of the following:
     
Above - two 2 cm. twins
Below - one 3.7 cm. Automatic
    4) Bridge Armor
      Intensified air activity in the Bay of Biscay and the North Atlantic in June 1943 and the numerous cases in which there were casualties when boats were attacked by aircraft with machine guns, showed the insufficiency of bridge armor without an armor protection upwards.  A good solution for this was fitting the boats with armored screens, one on starboard for 5 men and one on port for the Commanding Officer.  The all-round armor had to be done away with owing to weight.  The front was from the first against these armor shields, the erection of which was ordered on all boats at the beginning of July 1943.  This general objection to them, combined with
 
 
 
- 346 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
      a gradual improvement in radar location tactics and, therefore, the whole air defence of the boats led to the order on 31 October 1943 to dismantle the armor shields and to re-erect the all-round armor.  Incoming boats had reported that:
     
a) The armored screens were not used, as all men on the bridge were engaged in Flak defence and, therefore, the screens were superfluous.
b) The armored screens were a hindrance to visibility if the boat was rolling.
c) Spray formed on the upper structure.
    5) U-boat conning towers with a gun in forward position:
      The insufficient forward arc of fire of U-boat Flak guns and the frequent advantage taken by the enemy of this deficiency led, at the beginning of August 1943, to testing erection of a gun in forward direction and, subsequently, to installation in three different forms on experimental boats.
      On 14 August the Commander in Chief of the Navy laid down the following for this armament:
      a)  Abaft below one 3.7 cm. Flak single gun (Automatic) later a 3.7. twin (Automatic).
      b)  Abaft above two 2 cm. twins.
      c)  Forward platform (before the conning tower) one 2 cm. twin,
           later a 3.7 cm. single gun (Automatic).
      The appropriate conning towers are termed, in accordance with the former designation of conning towers, Conning Tower constructions V, VI and VII.  Characteristics are as follows:
     
Conning Tower V: Forward platform lower than the bridge with its armor incorporated in the bridge armor.  Abaft as conning tower IV.
Conning Tower VI: Forward platform on columns before the bridge.  The purpose of this is to allow the water to flow through under the platform, in order to prevent formation of spray.  Abaft as Conning Tower IV.
Conning Tower VII: The earlier Conning Tower framed in by 4 guns erected symmetrically on a special platform around the bridge (2 cm. twins or 3.7 cm.).
      In the case of Conning Tower V and VI the question of hindrances on the bridge through wind and spray is still obscure.  This can only be seen from a trial in the Atlantic.  The first two trial boats will put out into the North Sea for this purpose in the middle of December.
      Certain difficulties are still to be solved in connection with stowing the ammunition for these guns.
      It is planned to store a part of the ammunition in the torpedo containers on the upper deck.
       
 
 
 
- 347 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
    6) Rockets
      The equipment of the boats with line-carrying rockets was given up owing to the unfavorable experiences on U 441 (insufficient safety in firing).
      The question of using explosive rockets, to be fired from multiple launchers, was investigated thoroughly in October to November 1943.  The investigation showed the inferiority of such an arrangement in its effect as against a quick-firing Flak gun.
      Continuing trials which had begun, however, 30 rocket firing launchers each were erected on 2 boats in a complete circle round the coning tower, with fire divided into sectors.  The purpose of this was to lay an air burst barrage in the direction of an attacking aircraft, and also possibly as a protection for a submerging U-boat.  The chances of hits are extremely low, but a frightening effect may be expected at least in the initial use.
      The first boat with this device is U 986.  Experiences are awaited.
    7) Flak U-boats
      In the course of the summer 7 boats in all were converted to Flak U-boats.  These were U 441 - 256 - 621 - 211 - 953 - 271 - 263.  Operations by these boats showed that the conditions under which they were built, particularly regarding the operational area, no longer existed.  Operations in the Biscay are were out of the question in view of the enemy aircraft being too strong.  For operations further out to sea these boats had too little fuel, and for operations against a convoy too few torpedoes.  The boat itself was no longer worthy of the term "Flak U-boat" having regard to the operational boats, the Flak armament of which was nearly as strong as that of the Flak U-boats, other characteristics being normal.  Further, these boats had very poor seagoing qualities, according to the agreed opinion of their Commanding Officers, and their bridge became very wet and adversely affected by spray.
      Therefore, on 11 November 1943 the Commander in Chief of the Navy ordered the re-conversion of all Flak boats into operational boats with Conning Tower IV.  The phase of Flak U-boats is, therefore, finished.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
2.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
Op(EW 70)
U 228
-
Op(CF 26)
U 488
-
BF 77
U 653
-
BE 12
 
86
-
Op(CF 31)
230
-
CG 58
510
-
EH 52
667
-
BE 43
 
92
-
BE 12
238
-
CF 33
515
-
Op(EK 40)
672
-
Op(AL 18)
 
103
-
EH 97
262
-
BF 75
516
-
Op(EB 86)
714
-
BF 61
 
107
-
Op(CF 25)
269
-
Op(AL 75)
530
-
Op(EB 60)
734
-
Op(AL 47)
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
274
-
BF 70
536
-
BF 50
741
-
AF 76
 
154
-
EF 57
280
-
BF 70
537
-
BD 65
761
-
Op(AL 17)
 
155
-
EH 53
282
-
BF 70
538
-
Op(CF 34)
764
-
CF 34
 
170
-
DS 73
284
-
AF 76
541
-
Op(AK 66)
801
-
Op(AL 58)
 
172
-
CF 38
311
-
AF 76
542
-
Op(CF 26)
843
-
Op(CF 31)
 
178
-
Op(MU 40)
358
-
Op(CF 26)
543
-
Op(AL 72)
849
-
GG 18
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
364
-
AF 87
544
-
Op(AL 41)
850
-
AL 24
 
       
- 348 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
 
193
-
Op(DL 30)
391
-
Op(CF 25)
586
-
BF 76
962
-
Op(AL 74)
 
211
-
BF 70
415
-
BE 19
600
-
Op(CF 26)
963
-
BF 50
 
212
-
BE 86
420
-
BF 70
618
-
Op(CF 24)
969
-
BF 78
 
218
-
BF 82
421
-
Op(AK 69
625
-
Op(AL 42)
972
-
AN 36
 
219
-
EH 51
424
-
Op(CF 31)
629
-
AE 76
976
-
AF 76
 
226
-
BF 70
471
-
AN 23
648
-
BF 78
981
-
AN 23
 
  On Return Passage:  U 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 211 - 212 - 218 - 226 - 238 - 262 - 274 - 280 - 282 - 420 - 488 - 536 - 537 - 586 - 648 - 714 - 764 - 963 - 969.
  Entered Port:  U 212 - La Pallice;  U 714 - Lorient.
  Sailed:  U 390 - 392 - 744 - Kiel;  U 645 - La Pallice.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 68 sank an escorted freighter of 7,500 GRT while returning on 30 November, in ET 6643, after successful use of "Aphrodite".
    2) In the reconnaissance patrol line of Group "Weddigen" U 843 sighted destroyers at 0304 in BE 8817.  No indication of course.
    3) U 262 was attacked by an aircraft at 2142 in BF 7762.
  b)  None.
  c) 1) U-boat sighting in unknown position in Biscay (probably U 262).
    2) British units were located in AL 9646, AM 4689, AM 74.
  d) Squares AL 1663 and AL 2364 were given at 0106 on 27 November for stragglers and convoy ON 213.  Radio message was only partially deciphered
     On 21 December it was ordered that stragglers which could not reach the said convoy by dark on 1 December, should proceed direct to the stragglers' route.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) 1) U 629 - 761 - 672 - 544 - 625 - 421 - 734 - 541 - 269 - 962 - 543 - 92 - 653 - 801 - 667 - 415, at present in the current operational areas, will be incorporated into Group "Coronel".
      It is intended to set up a patrol line with the said boats at 1200 on 5 December from about AL 1982 to AL 7195 for night operations against slow west convoy (ONS 24).  The boats are to adjust course and speed so as to take up their positions unseen on 5 December.
      On 4 and 5 December the area east of the patrol line will be covered by our own reconnaissance aircraft.
       
- 349 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
      The following are available:
      2 Ju 290 on the 1st day, one Ju 290, one FW 200 long-range aircraft and 1 BV 220 on the 2nd day.
      These forces are, unfortunately, too small for a complete reconnaissance.  Since there are no more machines available however, this disadvantage must be accepted.
      There is no information regarding the awaited convoy.  A comparison of known data about earlier ONS convoys (points of rendezvous, route for stragglers, etc.) shows no system.  Moreover, the assumption has been confirmed once more that the enemy spreads his convoys over the whole North Atlantic without discrimination, so that, for the duration, any successful interception of convoys can be made only by our own intensive air reconnaissance.
      The patrol line was disposed purposely between the possible north and south route, so that is could be moved, after the first sighting of the convoy, either to the north or the south.
    2) Group "Weddigen" will proceed as from 2000 on course 3350, day's run 100 miles.  The south-bound KMS 34 can no longer be expected.  Probably it deviated far to the west.
      It is intended to dispose the Group on 6 December in about BD 30 so that if ONS 24, expected by Group "Coronel" deviates to the south it may still be intercepted and attacked.
  b) - d) None.
       
V. Reports of Success
    U 68                1 ship                7,500 GRT.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
3.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
ET 41
U 238
-
BE 90
U 510
-
EH 59
U 667
-
BE 15
 
86
-
Op(BE 87)
262
-
BF 76
515
-
Op(EK 70)
672
-
Op(AL 18)
 
92
-
Op(AL 78)
269
-
Op(AL 75)
516
-
Op(EB 80)
734
-
Op(AL 47)
 
103
-
EH 82
274
-
BF 80
530
-
Op(EB 60)
741
-
AF 72
 
107
-
Op(BE 79)
280
-
BF 80
536
-
BF 57
744
-
AO
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
282
-
BF 80
537
-
BE 44
761
-
Op(AL 17)
 
154
-
EF 53
284
-
AF 72
538
-
Op(CF 21)
764
-
CG 11
 
155
-
EH 54
311
-
AF 72
541
-
Op(AK 66)
801
-
Op(AL 71)
 
170
-
DS 55
358
-
Op(BE 79)
542
-
Op(CF 22)
843
-
Op(BE 67)
 
172
-
CF 56
364
-
AF 76
543
-
Op(AL 72)
849
-
GG 54
 
178
-
Op(MT 60)
390
-
AO
544
-
Op(AL 41)
850
-
AL 25
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
391
-
Op(BE 78)
586
-
BF 64
962
-
Op(AL 74)
 
193
-
Op(DL 10)
392
-
AO
600
-
Op(CF 22)
963
-
BF 54
 
       
- 350 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
 
211
-
BF 80
415
-
AL 97
618
-
Op(BE 78)
969
-
BF 84
 
218
-
BF 57
420
-
BF 80
625
-
Op(AK 63)
972
-
AN 31
 
219
-
EH 82
421
-
Op(AK 69)
629
-
Op(AL 51)
976
-
AF 72
 
226
-
BF 80
424
-
Op(BE 87)
645
-
BF 91
981
-
AF 76
 
228
-
Op(BE 79)
471
-
AF 76
648
-
BF 76      
 
230
-
CG 86
488
-
BF 75
653
-
Op(AL 78)      
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 211 - 218 - 226 - 238 - 262 - 274 - 280 - 282 - 420 - 488 - 536 - 537 - 586 - 648 - 764 - 963 - 969.
  Entered Port:  U 586 - St. Nazaire;  U 963 - Lorient.
  Sailed:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) - b) None.
  c) 1) British units were located in AM 7325, AL 6930, AL 8291, BE 2160, BE 2785, AL 8170.
    2) U-boat sighting in 440 50' North and unknown longitude.
    3) Intercept message:  Dakar radioed that there was a wreck and a quantity of heavy wood drifting around in ET 6640.  This was probably the freighter sunk by U 68.
    4) SSS report of an unknown British vessel from MP 7189.
  d)  None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) In order to ensure the prompt arrival of Group "Weddigen" in BD 30, 130 miles has been ordered as new day's run.
  b)  U 178, outward-bound from Penang, is operating at the present in the area off Madras.  The duration of its operations there is left to the Commanding Officer according to the traffic situation.  If the situation is not favorable, the boat is to report this and will take up as a new operational area the squares LC and MS (southwest point of India proper).
  c) U 103 has refueled from U 219 for economical return passage to Bergen.  U 219 will give over reserve fuel to U 172.
  d) 1) U 420 reported last on 20 October, while leaving the Biscay area, that she had passed 20 West.  The boat was subsequently assigned to Groups "Siegfried", "Eisenhart" and "Schill".  Since at first there was no reason for sending radio messages, the boat was ordered for the first time on 17 November to report her position.  U 420 has not reported up to date and should have put into port by now even if her radio had been faulty.  She is, therefore, presumed lost.
       
- 351 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
      There is no information regarding this.  It is, however, possible that the boat was destroyed already on her passage west by the aircraft-carrier presumed to be approximately in BD 30.
    2) U 280 reported at 1030 on 16 November an aircraft attack in BD 3836.  Since then the boat has not reported.  It is assumed that she was lost in this attack.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
4.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
ES 38
U 228
-
Op(BE 73)
U 471
-
AF 73
U 648
-
BF 84
 
86
-
Op(BE 73)
230
-
CG 90
488
-
BF 76
653
-
Op(AL 75)
 
92
-
Op(AL 72)
238
-
BF 75
510
-
EH 97
667
-
Op(AL 78)
 
103
-
EH 82
262
-
BF 76
515
-
Op(ET 20)
672
-
Op(AL 01)
 
107
-
Op(BE 72)
269
-
Op(AL 72)
516
-
Op(EB 80)
734
-
Op(AL 47)
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
274
-
BF 80
530
-
Op(EB 60)
744
-
AN 36
 
154
-
EF 34
282
-
BF 80
536
-
BF 50
761
-
Op(AL 19)
 
155
-
EH 28
284
-
AF 47
537
-
BE 46
764
-
BE 99
 
170
-
DS 28
311
-
AF 47
538
-
Op(BE 72)
801
-
Op(AL 71)
 
172
-
CF 82
358
-
Op(BE 73)
541
-
Op(AK 66)
843
-
Op(BE 57)
 
178
-
Op(MT 60)
364
-
AF 72
542
-
Op(BE 72)
849
-
GG 82
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
390
-
AN 36
543
-
Op(AL 72)
850
-
AL 29
 
193
-
Op(DL 10)
391
-
Op(BE 72)
544
-
Op(AL 41)
962
-
Op(AL 75)
 
211
-
BF 80
392
-
AN 36
600
-
Op(BE 75)
969
-
BF 85
 
218
-
BF 50
415
-
AL 88
618
-
Op(BE 71)
972
-
AN 23
 
219
-
EH 82
421
-
Op(AL 47)
625
-
Op(AK 63)
976
-
AF 47
 
226
-
BF 80
424
-
Op(BE 73)
629
-
Op(AL 17)
981
-
AF 73
             
645
-
BF 82
741
-
AF 47
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 211 - 218 - 226 - 238 - 262 - 274 - 282 - 488 - 536 - 537 - 648 - 764 - 969.
  Entered Port:  - . -
  Sailed:  U 846 - Kiel;  U 960 - Drontheim.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  For Group "Coronel" on ONS 24.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a)  None.
  b)  The convoy was not found.
  c) 1) U-boat sighting in DM 3163 with attack.  Since only U 129 and U 193 were in the vicinity, this may concern either of these boats.
    2) British units were located in:  AM 7886, AL 80, AL 6380, AM 7130.
    3) According to an intercept message, danger of aircraft has been reported in the Algiers area for enemy escort unit "Leicester".
  d)  None.
       
- 352 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
IV. Current Operations:
  a) Air reconnaissance, with 2 Ju 290, in the area 17 and 210 West and 58 and 520 North, for Group "Coronel".  No result.  A radar location, from area AL 80, of an escort aircraft BMEW 1 (escort Redbreast) as well as further locations of aircraft (see c. 2) seem to indicate that the awaited ONS convoy will proceed probably to the south of the Great Circle.  This is, however, not certain.  Decision:  move the middle disposition of Group "Coronel" to the south and operate purposely against southern avoiding movement.  Thereby sacrificing any possibilities of operating if the convoy deviates to the north.
    "Coronel" has been ordered to take up position at 1800 on 5 December in new patrol line from AK 6629 to AL 7781.  The air reconnaissance for 5 December will also be moves further south.
    Group "Weddigen" has been ordered to take up position at 1900 on 6 December in reconnaissance patrol from BD 3946 to BE 4415, course 3400, speed 10 knots.  With this Group a connection will be formed with the south part of Group "Coronel".
  b)  U 269 reported:  ability to dive restricted.  Diesel air-intake and regulating fuel tanker on port cracked.  Return from AL 7225.
  c)  None.
  d) Attacks on single vessels are prohibited as from 6 December until further notice, for returning blockade-runners, in the area between squares EF 6378 - EH 6389 - DE 3659 - DD 2465.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
5.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
ES 23
U 230
-
CG 90
U 510
-
ER 38
U 667
-
Op(AL 71)
 
86
-
Op(BE 45
238
-
BF 76
515
-
Op(ET 20)
672
-
Op(AL 41)
 
92
-
Op(AL 47)
262
-
BF 85
516
-
Op(EB 80)
734
-
Op(AL 44)
 
103
-
EH 28
269
-
AL 72
530
-
Op(EB 60)
741
-
AE 69
 
107
-
Op(BE 44)
274
-
BF 80
536
-
BF 57
744
-
AN 35
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
282
-
BF 80
537
-
BE 55
761
-
Op(AL 41)
 
154
-
DQ 99
284
-
AE 69
538
-
Op(BE 45)
764
-
BF 77
 
155
-
DS 89
311
-
AE 69
541
-
Op(AL 44)
801
-
Op(AL 71)
 
170
-
DS 87
358
-
Op(BE 44)
542
-
Op(BE 45)
843
-
Op(BE 46)
 
172
-
CF 87
364
-
AF 47
543
-
Op(AL 47)
846
-
AO
 
178
-
Op(MT 50)
390
-
AN 35
544
-
Op(AL 41)
849
-
GG 91
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
391
-
Op(BE 44)
600
-
Op(BE 45)
850
-
AL 54
 
193
-
Op(DL 10)
392
-
AN 35
618
-
Op(BE 66)
960
-
AF 59
 
211
-
BF 80
415
-
Op(AL 71
625
-
Op(AL 41)
962
-
Op(AL 47)
 
218
-
BF 57
421
-
AL 44
629
-
Op(AL 19)
969
-
BF 55
 
219
-
EH 29
424
-
Op(BE 45)
645
-
BF 81
972
-
AF 79
 
226
-
BF 80
471
-
AF 48
648
-
BF 82
976
-
AE 69
 
228
-
Op(BE 45)
488
-
BF 85
653
-
Op(AL 71)
981
-
AF 48
 
       
- 353 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 211 - 218 - 226 - 238 - 262 - 269 - 274 - 282 - 488 - 536 - 537 - 648 - 764 - 969.
  Entered Port:  - . -
  Sailed:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  On ONS 24 in the area between position lines AL 5144 to BE 1379 and AL 0367 to AM 7795.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a)  None.
  b)  Search without success.
  c) 1) U-boat sighted in EC 7914 (U 516) and CA 8460 (U 129).
    2) British unit in AM 55.
  d)  See IV a.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) Group "Coronel":
    Air reconnaissance in the area under paragraph II without result.  It must be assumed that ONS 24 proceeded northwards of the reconnaissance area.  This assumption is confirmed by the deciphering of a short instruction sent on 1 December to ONS 24 in which the stragglers' route was given as running over AK 2356 - AJ 6476.  It is possible that the enemy detected the boats by air reconnaissance in their waiting areas AL 40 and AL 70, and by-passed then in the north.  It is also possible, however, that this movement of the convoy to the north was an arbitrary convoy route in accordance with the general scheme for spreading the convoys.
     At 1348 on 5 December ONS 24 was ordered to alter its stragglers' route and to insert the following points:  AK 1893, AJ 6891.  This alteration of the stragglers' route is significant, because an order was given on 4 December to Group "Coronel" to move their present patrol line (AL 1982 to AL 1992) to the south (AK 6683 to AL 7781).  Since ONS 24 can no longer be expected Group "Coronel" has been ordered to take up new patrol line from AL 1746 to AL 4827 at 1800 on 7 December.  Operations are intended against HX 268 in the night of 7 - 8 December.  The position of the convoy, according to a Special Intercept message, was AK 4885 at 1600 on 5 December.
     Our own air reconnaissance is planned on 7 December west of the patrol.
  b) - c) None.
  d) U 226 fired on 15 October, according to a radio message of 17 October, a two-fan torpedo which missed an escorted single vessel in BE 1674.  Subsequently the boat was assigned to Groups "Eisenhart" and "Schill 3".  She was not
       
- 354 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
     ordered to report on her position as there was no reason for this.  Since U 226 has been on return passage since about 20 November, but there has been no message up to now, she must now be assumed lost.  There is no information regarding the cause for this.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
6.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
EJ 82
U 238
-
BF 85
U 515
-
Op(ET 20)
U 672
-
Op(AK 69)
 
86
-
Op(BD 63)
262
-
BF 82
516
-
Op(EB 80)
734
-
Op(AK 93)
 
92
-
Op(AL 74)
269
-
Op(AL 85)
530
-
Op(EB 60)
741
-
AE 67
 
103
-
EH 23
274
-
BF 80
536
-
BF 54
744
-
AN 34
 
107
-
Op(BD 39)
282
-
BF 80
537
-
BF 56
761
-
Op(AK 66)
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
284
-
AE 67
538
-
BE 44
764
-
BF 76
 
154
-
DR 72
311
-
AE 68
541
-
Op(AK 93)
801
-
Op(AL 74)
 
155
-
DS 59
358
-
Op(BD 63)
542
-
BF 45
843
-
Op(BE 41)
 
170
-
DG 58
364
-
AE 69
543
-
Op(AL 71)
846
-
AO
 
172
-
DH 14
390
-
AN 34
544
-
Op(AK 69)
849
-
GO 24
 
178
-
Op(MT 50)
391
-
Op(BD 63)
600
-
Op(BE 45)
850
-
AL 57
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
392
-
AN 34
618
-
Op(BD 39)
960
-
AF 57
 
193
-
Op(DL 10)
415
-
Op(AL 77)
625
-
Op(AK 69)
962
-
Op(AL 71)
 
211
-
BF 80
421
-
Op(AK 69)
629
-
Op(AK 66)
969
-
BF 61
 
218
-
BF 57
424
-
Op(BE 44)
645
-
BF 81
972
-
AF 73
 
219
-
DS 88
471
-
AF 47
648
-
BF 82
976
-
AE 68
 
228
-
Op(BD 63)
488
-
BF 86
653
-
Op(AL 74)
981
-
AE 69
 
230
-
DG 96
510
-
ES 19
667
-
Op(AL 77)      
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 211 - 218 - 238 - 262 - 269 - 274 - 282 - 488 - 536 - 537 - 648 - 764 - 969.
  Entered Port:  U 969 - Lorient.
  Sailed:  U 302 - Drontheim.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) Report of U 269 see paragraph IVa.
  b)  None.
  c) British units were located in BF 2510, BF 1310.
  d)  None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) 1) Group "Coronel" is proceeding to the new patrol line which is to be taken up at 1800 on 7 December.
      Air reconnaissance is intended for 7 December with one Ju 290 west of the patrol line.
    2) U 269 reported at 1414 a convoy in BE 19.  This boat has restricted diving capacity and is on return passage with extensive damage.  She was ordered to give at once the course and further details regarding the convoy, as it
       
- 355 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
      was intended to send Group "Weddigen" in to operate.  U 269 supplemented her report at 1626 and gave the convoy speed as 7 knots and course south.
      Group "Weddigen" which at that time, with course 3400 and speed 10 knots was trying to close up with Group "Coronel" was ordered as from 1600, with speed 3 knots, to proceed eastward, surfacing at 1900 and then proceeding with course 1100 and high speed.  It seemed possible that the boats might be brought up to the convoy during the night.  Since no further messages had been received from U 269 at the time Group "Weddigen" proceed as from midnight in the reconnaissance patrol line from BE 1779 to BE 4549, course east, speed 8 knots.  Owing to faulty main sender U 269 only reported in the course of the night as follows:  Last position of convoy at 1935 in BE 1676, course south.  Columns consisting of 16 ships each.  Strong air cover by day, contact lost.  Since this square is north of the first one, the actual position of the convoy is not clear.  Contrary to the last order, "Weddigen" boats are therefore to attempt, at high speed, to get into a forward position for day or night attacks, to submerge at dawn, but to utilize any chances for attacks.  Up to 0800 no contact had been made.
  b) New objective for U 311 is AL 17.  The boat is later to be assigned to Group "Coronel".
  c)  None.
  d) 1) U 536 was on return passage on 19 November in BE 8488 and intended to operate against the north-bound convoy of Group "Schill".
      Since then there has been no news from the boat.  She has neither answered enquires nor given her report which is now several days overdue.  She must be assumed lost, probably through the strong air cover of the convoy.
    2) U 211 was operating within Group "Schill 1" (CF 53) on the north-bound convoy and was ordered to return on 20 November in view of fuel shortage.  This boat also has not yet sent in her arrival report, which is due.  She must, therefore, be considered lost.  Loss almost certainly occurred off the convoy.  Cause unknown, but probably by aircraft.
    3) U 282 coming from home waters reported her position in AL 2236 on 24 October.  She was subsequently assigned to Group "Eisenhart" and "Schill 3" and was given freedom of action last within Group "Weddigen".  She was not ordered to give her position since there was no reason for this.  The boat had orders to return when she was short of fuel, but up to now has not arrived in base.  This boat also must be considered lost.  There is no information regarding the cause.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
 
 
- 356 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
7.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
EJ 51
U 230
-
CG 90
U 488
-
BF 83
U 653
-
Op(AL 45)
 
86
-
Op(BE 45)
238
-
BF 83
510
-
ES 53
667
-
Op(AL 45)
 
92
-
Op(AL 45)
262
-
BF 64
515
-
Op(ET 20)
672
-
Op(AL 41)
 
103
-
DS 95
269
-
BE 19
516
-
EC 82
734
-
Op(AL 41)
 
107
-
Op(BE 42)
274
-
BF 80
530
-
Op(EB 60)
741
-
AE 83
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
284
-
AE 83
537
-
BE 65
744
-
AF 87
 
154
-
DR 54
302
-
AF 59
538
-
BE 10
761
-
Op(AL 17)
 
155
-
DS 62
311
-
AL 22
541
-
Op(AL 41)
764
-
BF 84
 
170
-
DG 53
358
-
Op(BE 42)
542
-
BE 10
801
-
Op(AL 45)
 
172
-
DG 62
364
-
AE 68
543
-
Op(AL 41)
843
-
Op(BE 46)
 
178
-
Op(MT 50)
390
-
AN 24
544
-
Op(AL 19)
846
-
AN 36
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
391
-
Op(BE 42)
600
-
Op(BE 10)
849
-
GO 52
 
193
-
Op(DL 10)
392
-
AF 87
618
-
Op(BE 18)
850
-
AL 78
 
218
-
BF 57
415
-
Op(AL 48)
625
-
Op(AL 19)
960
-
AF 49
 
219
-
DS 59
421
-
Op(AL 19)
629
-
Op(AL 17)
962
-
Op(AL 41)
 
228
-
Op(BE 42)
424
-
Op(BE 46)
645
-
BE 72
972
-
AF 48
 
981
-
AE 68
471
-
AE 68
648
-
BE 57
976
-
AE 83
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 218 - 238 - 262 - 274 - 488 - 516 - 537 - 648 - 764.
  Entered Port:  U 262 - La Pallice.
  Sailed:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  Air reconnaissance intended with a Ju 290 for Group "Coronel" could not be carried out owing to fog.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) - b) None.
  c) 1) U-boat sighting in area 20 miles around Martinique (U 516?).
    2) British units were located in AJ 8480, BF 1170, BF 7980, BC 5210, BC 3760, CG 9565, AL 97/98.
    3) Escort aircraft of convoy HX "Broom" received a short signal at 1852 from Liverpool.  Aircraft was located at this time in about AM 43.
  d)  For reports regarding HX 268 - see IV a) 2).
       
IV.   Current Operations:
  a) 1) Of the boats of Group "Weddigen" proceeding eastward, the one in the most southerly position, U 424, sighted the awaited convoy at 0855 in BE 4671.  Boats had orders from the previous day to go in to operate immediately on receipt of a contact report.  Since there was only one hour left before dawn, however, it could not be relied upon that further boats would make contact.
      The proposal to order the boats, in this favorable situation, to remain surfaced even in daylight was rejected, as all the boats were behind the convoy, strong air cover was to be expected in this area by day and none of the boats had a 3.7 cm. gun on board.
       
- 357 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
      Further reports on the convoy have not been received.
      Towards evening Group "Weddigen" was dispersed.  U 618 - 107 and 86, which still have sufficient fuel for further operations against convoys, will join Group "Coronel" and proceed to AL 48.
      U 424 - 843 - 358 - 228 and 391 would have been able to remain for several days in the operational area as they had sufficient fuel.  Since, however, prospects at the moment are poor, these boats have been ordered to return so that they may be equipped as quickly as possible with the new 3.7 cm. gun and be able to put out again.
    2) The air reconnaissance intended for Group "Coronel" in the area west of the patrol line could not take place owing to bad weather.  The boats were, therefore, left to their own resources regarding the finding of the convoy.  Some information from the Special Intercept Service was the only indication that the convoy might still be found.  According to this information the position of the convoy at 1600 on 4 December was AK 4835.
      Boats were instructed, contrary to orders, to surface at 1730 and to ensure patrol of the areas.  U 629 as the most northerly boat was to make frequent sweeps to the north, up to about 30 miles away.
      Towards 2000 a Special Intercept message was received regarding alteration of the stragglers' route itself, it had to be assumed in any case that the convoy route also had been moved further to the north.  The Group was ordered to proceed to the north as from 2100, with speed 7 knots, course 3450, so that if the convoy passed in the north it might still be reached.
      At 0046 U 311, which was in a position 30 miles north of the patrol line, extending the latter by one position to the north, reported from AL 1554 loud convoy radio traffic.  The boat had no intermediate wave D/F apparatus and could not, therefore, establish the direction.  Boats with the Group which had intermediate wave D/F apparatus were ordered at once to fix the radio traffic and to report.  It was not until 0730 that U 667 reported from AL 4274 an uncertain fix at 2840.  Up to 0800 there was no further information regarding the convoy.  Whether this is still west of the patrol line or has by-passed the Group in the north remains to be seen.
      The Group has been ordered to submerge at dawn and to remain in the new patrol line from AK 3633 to AL 4514, but to patrol the area well.
      U 311 having joined Group "Coronel", this now consists of 16 boats.
  b)  U 645 has been instructed to proceed to AL 48.  The boat will be assigned to Group "Coronel".
 
 
 
- 358 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  c)  U 219 will give reserve fuel over to U 172 and the position of both boats, as from 1600 on 11 December, will be DG 8735.  U 219 will return and U 172 is a Monsun Boat.
  d) 1) U 274 - on her first operational run - reported last on 22 October with a short weather report from AJ 33.
      Subsequently the boat was assigned to Groups "Seigfried", "Eisenhart", "Schill 3" and "Weddigen".  She did not radio during the whole course of operations but was not instructed to do so as there was no reason for this.
      Since U 274's fuel must by now be so low that she should have already put into base as there has been no report from her up to date, she must be presumed lost.  There is no information regarding this.
    2) U 600 was assigned to Group "Schill 1" and was operating with this Group against the north-bound convoy.  Last report of position was on 23 November from CF 2810.  During the next operation within Group "Weddigen" the boat did not report again and has also not answered up to date. Her loss must, therefore, be assumed.  It was probably caused by air cover over the convoy.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
8.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
EJ 41
U 230
-
CG 90
U 510
-
ES 67
U 667
-
Op(AL 42)
 
86
-
Op(BE 17)
238
-
BF 80
515
-
Op(ET 20)
672
-
Op(AL 17)
 
92
-
Op(AL 45)
269
-
BE 28
516
-
EC 67
734
-
Op(AL 41)
 
103
-
DS 69
284
-
AE 82
530
-
Op(EB 60)
741
-
AE 82
 
107
-
Op(BE 14)
302
-
AF 57
537
-
BF 61
744
-
AF 76
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
311
-
Op(AL 15)
538
-
BE 10
761
-
Op(AL 17)
 
154
-
DR 29
358
-
BE 54
541
-
Op(AL 41)
764
-
BF 82
 
155
-
DS 33
364
-
AE 67
542
-
BE 10
801
-
Op(AL 45)
 
170
-
DG 34
390
-
AF 87
543
-
Op(AL 43)
843
-
BE 43
 
172
-
DG 59
391
-
BE 19
544
-
Op(AL 19)
846
-
AN 23
 
178
-
Op(MT 55)
392
-
AF 76
618
-
Op(BE 14)
849
-
GG 67
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
415
-
Op(AL 48)
625
-
Op(AL 17)
850
-
BE 14
 
193
-
Op(DM 20)
421
-
Op(AL 19)
629
-
Op(AL 19)
960
-
AF 48
 
218
-
BF 52
424
-
Op(BE 46)
645
-
BE 85
962
-
Op(AL 41)
 
219
-
DS 61
471
-
AL 32
648
-
BF 57
972
-
AF 47
 
228
-
BE 43
488
-
BF 82
653
-
Op(AL 45)
976
-
AE 82
                   
981
-
AE 67
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 218 - 228 - 238 - 269 - 358 - 391 - 424 - 488 - 516 - 537 - 648 - 764 - 843.
  Entered Port:  U 218 - Brest;  U 537 - Lorient.
  Sailed:  U 305 - Brest;  U 270 - St. Nazaire; U 275 - La Pallice.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  Against north-bound Gibraltar convoy in CF 60.
       
- 359 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) U 618 situation report:  On 20 November location attack, one minute continuous note before searchlights were switched on.  26 November beforehand 2 and, upon attack, 1 Naxos location.  Various pulses and frequencies.  Boat suspected aircraft and naval location.
  b)  Aircraft sighted a convoy in CF 6125 with course 450.  Operations by boats not possible, as there were none in the vicinity; this was not intended before.  The aircraft leader operated for the purpose of training his crews.
  c) 1) U-boat sighted in DB 6211.  Attack on U-boat in DC 1828.  In both cases this could have been only U 129.
    2) British units were located in AM 4520, AM 2440, AM 5530, CF 3530, BE 7280, BE 9830, BE 5670.  Battleship was in AL 38 at 0505.
    3) Guardship of Convoy "Broom" (probably HX 268) was located at 0930 in area AL 25, lower half.
  d)  None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a)  The awaited HX 268 probably by-passed the patrol line of Group "Coronel" in the north.  An indication of this was the fix on the radio guardship at 0930 in AL 25.  Reasons for this deviation are again not clear.  It does not, therefore, seem out of the question that the boats were located by the enemy while submerged at night, without having observed this themselves.  Since there was no radio traffic in the patrol line, and also, according to Intercept messages, no boats were sighted, there seems to be no other explanation for the deviation at the moment.
     Further operations against convoys are intended with Group "Coronel" on 13 December approximately in area AL 10 and 40.  At this time 2 west and 2 east-bound convoys may be expected in the said area.
     An operation against the ON convoy is planned.
    In order to clear temporarily the area which the patrol line will occupy on 13 December, Group "Colonel" will be divided into 2 part groups and these will proceed to the north or southwest.  These Groups will be in the following patrol lines at midnight on 11 December:
     
"Coronel 1" with U 311 - 629 - 761 - 290 - 672 - 544 - 625 - 653 - 421 from AK 2286 to AK 2831.
"Coronel 2" with U 734 - 667 - 541 - 962 - 415 - 543 - 801 - 618 - 107 - 86 from AK 6815 to AK 9569.
    On the 12th and 13th December our own aircraft reconnaissance will go out in the area of the presumed convoy position.
       
- 360 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
    The patrol line planned for 13 December in approximately AL, left half, will be taken up for a short time by "Coronel 1 and 2", as well as further boats coming from home waters.
  b)  U 741 - 471 - 976 - 284 - 981 - 364 will proceed to AL 13 and will be ranged, each on arrival, in the patrol line of Group "Coronel" planned on the 13th.
  c)  None.
  d) 1) U 538 operated with Group "Schill 3" on the north-bound Gibraltar convoy and reported at 0453 on 21 November an aircraft with searchlights in BE 8131.  Since then there has been no news from the boat.  It was subsequently assigned to Group "Weddigen", but will not have reached this.  Loss through air cover over the convoy on 21 or 22 November appears probable.
    2) U 542 belonged to Group "Weddigen" and was attacked by aircraft, during operations against the north-bound convoy, at 0525 on 26 November in CF 5227.  She was probably lost as a result of this attack, since later instructions to report on her position were unanswered.
    3) U 230 has passed through the Straits of Gibraltar and, therefore, comes under the Captain, U-boats, Mediterranean.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
9.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
EJ 14
U 269
-
BE 37
U 510
-
ES 96
U 741
-
AE 84
 
86
-
BD 36
270
-
BF 91
515
-
Op(ET 20)
744
-
AE 72
 
92
-
Op(AK 03)
275
-
BF 91
516
-
EC 69
761
-
Op(AK 33)
 
103
-
DT 17
284
-
AE 84
530
-
Op(EB 50)
764
-
BF 50
 
107
-
BD 33
302
-
AF 49
541
-
Op(AK 63)
801
-
Op(AK 66)
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
305
-
BF 55
543
-
Op(AK 66)
843
-
BE 52
 
154
-
DR 31
311
-
Op(AK 33)
544
-
Op(AK 35)
846
-
AF 79
 
155
-
DG 86
358
-
BE 55
618
-
BD 33
849
-
GQ 93
 
170
-
DG 32
364
-
AE 83
625
-
Op(AK 35)
850
-
BD 63
 
172
-
DG 82
390
-
AF 76
629
-
Op(AK 33)
960
-
AE 69
 
178
-
Op(MT 55)
391
-
BE 52
645
-
BE 57
962
-
Op(AK 63)
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
392
-
AF 72
648
-
BF 50
972
-
AE 68
 
193
-
Op(DM 20)
415
-
Op(AK 69)
653
-
Op(AK 03)
976
-
AL 22
 
219
-
DS 34
421
-
Op(AK 38)
667
-
Op(AK 69)
981
-
AE 83
 
228
-
BE 52
424
-
BE 55
672
-
Op(AK 35)      
 
238
-
BF 50
471
-
AL 22
734
-
Op(AK 63)      
       
488
-
BF 80            
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 228 - 238 - 269 - 358 - 391 - 424 - 488 - 516 - 648 - 764 - 843.
  Entered Port:  - . -
  Sailed:  U 545 - Kiel.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
- 361 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) U 629 established, from 0400 to 0800, continuous location by radar and light.  The boat presumes that patrol lines are always detected in this manner.   On enquires she gave the following closer description:
    White-yellow to red disc.  Run-in diagonally to the boat from the horizon.  No radar location beforehand. Submerging was possible during and after light location.  Further details must be confirmed after the return of the Commanding Officer.
  b) None.
  c) 1) U-boat sighted in DC 1246 (presumably U 129); further report of sighting in the Biscay area.
    2) British units located in AL 88, AM 29, AM 51, AK 03, AM 01, AM 18, CF 72 (merchant ship).
    3) According to an intercept message a ship was torpedoed at 1200 on 8 December in EL 3181 (probably by U 530).
  d) None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) Groups "Coronel 1 and 2" are proceeding further to the patrol line ordered.
  b) - c) None.
  d)  U 648 reported last at 0504 on 22 November further details regarding warding-off an aircraft attack.  The boat was then assigned to Group "Weddigen" but did not report again during the subsequent convoy operation in BE.  Since U 648 has up to date not sent in her arrival report, which has been due for days, she must be considered lost.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
10.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
DT 74
U 269
-
BE 69
U 488
-
BF 92
U 734
-
Op(AK 65)
 
86
-
AK 99
270
-
BF 83
510
-
ET 78
741
-
AE 79
 
92
-
Op(AK 26)
275
-
BF 83
515
-
Op(ET 20)
744
-
AF 47
 
103
-
DT 12
284
-
AL 25
516
-
ED 45
761
-
Op(AK 24)
 
107
-
AK 99
302
-
AF 48
530
-
Op(EB 80)
764
-
BF 55
 
129
-
Op(BD 60)
305
-
BF 46
541
-
Op(AK 66)
801
-
Op(AK 92)
 
154
-
DF 95
311
-
Op(AK 22)
543
-
Op(AK 69)
843
-
BE 56
 
155
-
DG 67
358
-
BE 59
544
-
Op(AK 26)
846
-
AF 75
 
170
-
CF 77
364
-
AE 85
545
-
AO
849
-
GH 75
 
172
-
DG 85
390
-
AF 72
618
-
AK 99
850
-
AK 89
 
178
-
Op(MT 55)
391
-
BE 53
625
-
Op(AK 26)
960
-
AE 69
 
       
- 362 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
392
-
AF 47
629
-
Op(AK 24)
962
-
Op(AK 63)
 
193
-
Op(DM 30)
415
-
Op(AK 92)
645
-
BE 46
972
-
AE 68
 
219
-
DS 31
421
-
Op(AK 28)
653
-
Op(AK 26)
976
-
AE 84
 
228
-
BE 53
424
-
BE 56
667
-
Op(AK 68)
981
-
AE 83
 
238
-
BF 50
471
-
AL 23
672
-
Op(AK 24)      
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 228 - 238 - 269 - 358 - 391 - 424 - 488 - 516 - 648 - 764 - 843.
  Entered Port:  - . -
  Sailed:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  Air reconnaissance on north-bound convoy.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 311 intercepted VH/F radio traffic in the radar intercept at 2018 on 9 December and at 0910 on 10 December in AK 3216 and AK 3114.  The boat suspected a convoy passing in the north from the position of the Naxos antenna.  According to our own dead reckoning, however, there could have been no convoy in the said area.
    2) In connection with the report yesterday by U 629 on light location, U 734 reports that she made similar observations, but that the light disc in question later turned out to be the planet "Venus".
  b) A convoy was sighted, consisting of numerous merchant vessels and an aircraft-carrier at 0910 in BE 8515 (MKS convoy).
  c) 1) U-boats sighted:  CG 2249, BF 4529, BF 81 and CD 5318 (none of our own boats there).
    2) British units were located in: AM 5119, BC 1623, AL 6765, BF 1590.
  d)  None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) "Coronel 1 and 2" have been ordered, even if the weather is bad, to proceed further with most economical fuel consumption.  Late arrival in the patrol line at present ordered will be taken into account.  No report.
  b) - d) None.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
11.December 1943.
 
 
   
I.
U 68
-
DD 48
U 269
-
BE 63
U 488
-
BF 68
U 734
-
Op(AK 68)
 
86
-
Op(AK 95)
270
-
BF 81
510
-
FE 21
741
-
AL 22
 
92
-
Op(AK 24)
275
-
BF 49
515
-
Op(ET 60)
744
-
AE 69
 
103
-
DG 94
284
-
AL 13
516
-
ED 42
761
-
Op(AK 24)
 
107
-
Op(AK 95)
302
-
AF 47
530
-
Op(EB 50)
764
-
BF 52
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
305
-
BF 48
541
-
Op(AK 68)
801
-
Op(AK 92)
 
154
-
DF 69
311
-
Op(AK 22)
543
-
Op(AK 92)
843
-
BE 65
 
155
-
DG 65
358
-
BE 67
544
-
Op(AK 26)
846
-
AF 72
     
 
- 363 -
 
     
     

 

     
     
 
 
170
-
CF 49
364
-
AE 84
545
-
AN 36
849
-
GR 79
 
172
-
DG 87
390
-
AF 47
618
-
Op(AK 95)
850
-
BD 25
 
178
-
Op(MT 50)
391
-
BE 62
625
-
Op(AK 26)
960
-
AE 67
 
190
-
Op(FB 40)
392
-
AE 69
629
-
Op(AK 24)
962
-
Op(AK 68)
 
193
-
Op(DM 30)
415
-
Op(AK 92)
645
-
BE 46
972
-
AE 59
 
219
-
DG 87
421
-
Op(AK 28)
653
-
Op(AK 26)
976
-
AL 13
 
228
-
BE 82
424
-
BE 65
667
-
Op(AK 68)
981
-
AE 79
 
238
-
BF 50
471
-
AL 14
672
-
Op(AK 24)      
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 228 - 238 - 269 - 358 - 391 - 424 - 488 - 516 - 764 - 843.
  Entered Port:  U 764 - Brest.
  Sailed:  U 382 - 641 - St. Nazaire;  U 716 - Kiel.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) - b) None.
  c) 1) U-boat sighted in EO 1736 (U 190) and two further ones in positions not deciphered.
    2) U-boat attacked or was attacked in DN 4797 (U 193).
    3) British units were located in: AM 7561, AL 8480, BE 3530, AM 4656, AM 3671.
  d)  None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) Groups "Coronel 1 and 2" will move their patrol line, as from 2000, by 80 miles to the east with economical cruising speed.  Radio silence has been ordered with the exception of important tactical messages.
     Air reconnaissance is planned for 12 December with 2 Ju 290 and a BV 220 approximately in area AL 30 and 60. The two "Coronel" Groups will then be combined into one, according to air report, and will be disposed with further boats in a new patrol line.
  b)  U 305 - 275 - 270 will proceed to AL 74 as their new objective.
  c)  None.
  d) Owing to the passage of two blockade-runners, attacks on single vessels are prohibited as from midnight on 12 December until further notice in the following area: from DE 3659 over DD 2465 - CB 5837 - BD 2621 to CE 2851.  The areas mentioned in War Diary of 25 November and 4 December are also prohibited still for the present.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
- 364 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
12.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
DT 16
U 269
-
BF 42
U 471
-
AL 13
U 667
-
Op(AK 69)
 
86
-
Op(AL 74)
270
-
BF 73
488
-
BF 68
672
-
Op(AK 34)
 
92
-
Op(AK 34)
275
-
BF 48
510
-
FE 37
716
-
AO
 
103
-
DG 66
284
-
AL 13
515
-
Op(ET 60)
734
-
Op(AK 69)
 
107
-
Op(AL 74)
302
-
AE 68
516
-
ED 19
741
-
AL 12
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
305
-
BF 44
530
-
Op(EB 50)
744
-
AE 68
 
154
-
DG 43
311
-
Op(AK 32)
541
-
Op(AK 69)
761
-
Op(AK 34)
 
155
-
DH 14
358
-
BE 69
543
-
Op(AL 71)
801
-
Op(AL 71)
 
170
-
CF 51
364
-
AE 79
544
-
Op(AK 36)
843
-
BE 66
 
172
-
DG 87
382
-
BF 91
545
-
AN 31
846
-
AF 47
 
178
-
Op(MT 80)
390
-
AE 69
618
-
Op(AL 74)
849
-
GZ 33
 
190
-
Op(FB 50)
391
-
BE 63
625
-
Op(AK 36)
850
-
BD 51
 
193
-
Op(DM 30)
392
-
AE 67
629
-
Op(AK 34)
960
-
AE 59
 
219
-
DG 87
415
-
Op(AL 71)
641
-
BF 91
962
-
Op(AK 69)
 
228
-
BE 66
421
-
Op(AK 38)
645
-
BE 15
972
-
AE 82
 
238
-
BF 52
424
-
BE 66
653
-
Op(AK 36)
976
-
AL 13
                   
981
-
AE 79
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 228 - 238 - 269 - 358 - 391 - 424 - 488 - 516 - 843.
  Entered Port:  U 488 - Bordeaux;  U 238 - Brest.
  Sailed:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  Air reconnaissance for Group "Coronel 1 and 2", in area AL 30 and 60 on the awaited convoy ON 215.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 801 reported:  2 destroyers, with course S.W.  Square given was not clear (U 801 belongs to "Coronel 2").  These destroyers were possibly a stationary search group.
    2) U 510 reported:  On 9 December steamer type "Antilla" course north, high speed.  10 December detected by aircraft, destroyer maintaining contact, always outside our range.  Today cruiser type "Concord" searching with air cover.  See air alarm at 1450.
      This report concerns a blockade-runner of our own ("Osorno" or "Alsterufer").
    3) U 190 gave situation report from the North Brazilian Coast:  The boat had been on the 200 m. line and only saw a patrol vessel on 2 December in FA 3514.  Return.
  b)  During reconnaissance no result.  After return the pilot of an aircraft reported that the shipping detection set was out of action and a member of the crew had seen at 1405 through a break in the clouds, 3 ships in AL 3952.
  c) 1) U-boats sighted in:  BF 7637 (U 270 or U 275) BF 7876, BF 4875.
    2) British units were located in BF 2430, AL 9590, AK 7250, AL 5820, AK 6670, AK 7493, AL 4570.
  d)  None.
       
- 365 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
IV. Current Operations:
  a)  Air reconnaissance for Group "Coronel" had no result.  Reconnaissance of the patrol line by the middle machine was uncertain owing to the temporary failure of the shipping detection set.  The report of the rear gunner (see III b) therefore, constituted the only indication and had to be considered.
    On the assumption that the vessels sighted might be some of those of the awaited convoy, "Coronel 1 and 2" were ordered to close up to the middle in front of the presumed forward course of the convoy, to a patrol line from AK 3696 over 6329 to AL 4773.
     U 471 - 284 - 976 - 741 - 981 - 364 will leave their present operational areas and extend the patrol line in a northeasterly direction.  All boats have been reminded once again that they are to proceed submerged by day.
  b)  None.
  c) 1) U 219 reported having given fuel over to U 172.
    2) U 510 and U 172 have been instructed to proceed south, eastwards of FE 2957, FM 4940, GZ 4670 and to by-pass FM 27 sufficiently.   West of this line attacks are prohibited.
  d)  All boats were sent the following by radio: Current Order No. 1:  A U-boat crew remained with their boat, which had been bombed out of control at periscope depth and then rammed by a destroyer, being subsequently chased for nine hours and heavily depth-charged, in spite of almost hopeless damage, bringing her back home hardly afloat.
    This achievement shows what conditions well trained crews can overcome.  Every outgoing boat, therefore, must carry on during her outward passage, thoroughly and as exhaustive as possible breakdown exercises. See Special War Experiences, Engineering Section.  (These experiences are those of U 333, Captain Cremer).
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
 
 
 
- 366 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
13.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
DG 99
U 270
-
BF 71
U 510
-
FL 15
U 716
-
AN 36
 
86
-
Op(AL 74)
275
-
BF 47
515
-
Op(ET 60)
734
-
Op(AK 69)
 
92
-
Op(AK 34)
284
-
AL 13
516
-
ED 25
741
-
Op(AL 12)
 
103
-
DH 42
302
-
AE 67
530
-
Op(EB 50)
744
-
AE 67
 
107
-
Op(AL 74)
305
-
BE 66
541
-
Op(AK 69)
761
-
Op(AK 34)
 
129
-
Op(BD 30)
311
-
Op(AK 32)
543
-
Op(AL 71)
801
-
Op(AL 71)
 
154
-
DG 28
358
-
BF 47
544
-
Op(AK 36)
843
-
BF 44
 
155
-
DH 13
364
-
AE 79
545
-
AN 24
846
-
AE 69
 
170
-
CF 37
382
-
BF 83
618
-
Op(AL 74)
849
-
JJ 13
 
172
-
DG 87
390
-
AE 68
625
-
Op(AK 25)
850
-
BD 81
 
178
-
Op(MT 50)
391
-
BF 44
629
-
Op(AK 34)
960
-
AE 82
 
190
-
EQ 82
392
-
AE 59
641
-
BF 83
962
-
Op(AK 69)
 
193
-
Op(DM 30)
415
-
Op(AL 71)
645
-
AL 75
972
-
AE 81
 
219
-
DG 87
421
-
Op(AK 38)
653
-
Op(AK 36)
976
-
AL 13
 
228
-
BF 44
424
-
BF 44
667
-
Op(AK 69)
981
-
AL 21
 
269
-
BF 46
471
-
AL 13
672
-
Op(AK 34)      
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 190 - 228 - 269 - 358 - 391 - 424 - 516 - 843.
  Entered Port:  - . -
  Sailed:  - . -
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  Air reconnaissance for Group "Coronel" in area AL 20, AL 30, AL 60 and AL 90.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a)  A boat reported aircraft attack in BF 4702?.  Signal and signature group not clear.  There was no reply to a further enquiry.
  b)  Air reconnaissance detected at 0823 (Fw. 200) a convoy in AL 9931, at 1058 in AL 9198 and at 1810 in AL 9942.  The position at 1810 was probably the most accurate in view of the weather conditions.
  c) 1) U-boat sightings:  in BF 4876, ED 9957 and BF 5521.
    2) British units were located in: AL 6991, AM 4480 - 90, BE 1830, AM 7128, BE 4320.  British reconnaissance unit in AL 5438 and British merchant ship in AL 6880.
  d)  None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) The Group has been ordered to man D/F receiver from 1400 - 1430 and from 1600 to 1630 and to surface at 1830.  Aircraft reports received indicated that the awaited ON 215 was proceeding very far south, and that the ships sighted by aircraft on 12 December, therefore, did not belong to the awaited convoy.  It was decided to go into operation in spite of the great distance.  The southern boats of the Group from U 618 up to and including U 734 were, therefore, ordered to proceed on course 2100 and to proceed at maximum speed possible according to the weather.
     U 618 and U 734 reported, on enquiry, stormy weather and maximum speed possible 8 knots.
       
- 367 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
     Prospects of still finding the convoy are very small.  The operation planned failed on the whole for the following reasons:
    1) Because, in view of the lack of machines, the area covered by reconnaissance on 12 December was altogether too small and reconnaissance was too uncertain as the patrol line covered by each machine was too wide.  (No reserve in case of a machine or set being out of action).
    2) Because operations had to be begun on the only indication, which fitted in with the dead reckoning on the convoy, of the first scanty air reconnaissance on the 12th (report by the rear gunner on 3 vessels sighted).  Since the area of the assumed course of the convoy could not be covered sufficiently with the north Group "Coronel 1" (in view of too great distance for the boats), the south Group "Coronel 2" also had to be brought up, and it was later, therefore, in a very unfavorable position for operations based on the new reports of 13 December.
      U 645 joined Group "Coronel 2" and extended the patrol line by one position to the south.
  b)  None.
  c) U 172 and U 190 are to rendezvous at 1600 on 19 December in EH 5656 for handing over Borkum apparatus.
  d)  None.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
14.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
DG 93
U 270
-
BF 93
U 510
-
FL 51
U 716
-
AN 34
 
86
-
Op(AL 47)
275
-
BE 65
515
-
Op(ET 60)
734
-
Op(AK 34)
 
92
-
Op(AK 38)
284
-
Op(AL 15)
516
-
ED 23
741
-
AL 13
 
103
-
CD 87
302
-
AE 59
530
-
Op(EB 86)
744
-
AE 59
 
107
-
Op(AL 47)
305
-
BE 64
541
-
Op(AK 43)
761
-
Op(AK 38)
 
129
-
Op(DC 10)
311
-
Op(AK 36)
543
-
Op(AK 44)
801
-
Op(AL 44)
 
154
-
DG 34
358
-
BF 48
544
-
Op(AK 03)
843
-
BF 58
 
155
-
CF 89
364
-
Op(AL 13)
545
-
AF 84
846
-
AE 68
 
170
-
CF 35
382
-
BF 81
618
-
AL 47
849
-
JJ 21
 
172
-
DS 38
390
-
AE 67
625
-
Op(AK 03)
850
-
BD 79
 
178
-
Op(MT 54)
391
-
BF 45
629
-
Op(AK 38)
960
-
AE 84
 
190
-
EQ 59
392
-
AE 82
641
-
BF 49
962
-
Op(AK 66)
 
193
-
Op(DM 28)
415
-
Op(AK 66)
645
-
AL 72
972
-
AE 79
 
219
-
DG 56
421
-
Op(AK 63)
653
-
Op(AK 03)
976
-
Op(AL 15)
 
228
-
BF 45
424
-
BF 45
667
-
Op(AK 63)
981
-
Op(AL 13)
 
269
-
BF 91
471
-
Op(AL 15)
672
-
Op(AK 38)      
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 190 - 228 - 269 - 358 - 391 - 424 - 516 - 843.
  Entered Port:  - . -
  Sailed:  U 952 - La Pallice;  U 314 - 763 - 957 - 965 - 1060 - Kiel.
       
- 368 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
II. Air Reconnaissance:  None.
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a) 1) U 129 sank 6,000 GRT and a destroyer in DN 1362 and gave a situation report from this area as follows:
      Fast, small convoys and single vessels from DB 94 to DC 12.  Escorts DC 13 to DN 19. In general strong air and naval activity using radar location.
    2) U 178 reported the situation off Madras as follows:
      "7 December, in MT 5448 incoming small convoy with naval and air cover.   Am 10 miles off, not approaching.  10 December, in MT 5116 vessel proceeding at high speed, course 1950. 12 December in 5134 small convoy with strong escort, course 2200, medium speed.   Single misfire (surface circular-run torpedo) on single vessel.  Normal:  slight air and sea patrols.  Proceeding to LC and MS.
  b)  None.
  c) 1) U-boat sightings in BF 7768 (U 170?).
    2) British units were located in AM 5510 - 20, BF 2150 - 80 and AM 5734, AM 4340, AM 0277, AM 5252, AM 5350, AJ 9810.
  d)  None.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a) 1) Former Group "Coronel 1" will be divided into "Coronel 1" (U 364 - 981 - 741 - 471 - 284 - 976) and "Colonel 2" (U 311 - 629 - 761 - 92 - 672 - 544 - 625 - 643 - 421).  Both groups will be in the following position lines at 1900 on 15 December:  "Coronel 1" from AK 3291 to 3477, "Coronel 2" from AK 3783 to 6287 and at 1900 on 16 December:
      "Coronel 1" from AK 3174 to 2631 and "Coronel 2" from AK 0289 to 6712.
      The operational patrol line was moved because no convoy is expected at present and if the boats remain in their position it makes it easy for the enemy to detect and attack them.
    2) Boats of Group "Coronel" proceeding south will now be called "Coronel 3", they will proceed as from 1400 on course 1800.  "Coronel 3" will be in patrol line at 1900 on 15 December, from BD 3195 to 3878.  The patrol line is in such a position that it will detect enemy courses 240 - 2600, as calculated on the last position reported by aircraft.  The boats have been ordered to proceed on the surface also by day, in order to proceed as quickly and as far south as possible.  If enemy aircraft appear the boats are to submerge and proceed under water.
      U 86 and U 734 will return.  "Coronel 3", therefore consists of 9 boats.
       
- 369 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  b) 1) U 305 - 275 - 270 - 641 - 382 will be ordered to take up new waiting positions in the area between the connecting lines BE 7311 over 7977 over 8899 to 8233.  Operations are planned for these boats later on a Gibraltar convoy.
    2) Boats, U 972 - 960 - 392 and 744, coming from home waters, will proceed to the present middle of the position line of "Coronel 1"; U 302 and 390 to the middle of position lines of "Coronel 2".
    3) U 178 will leave operational area off Madras and operate in LC and MS.
  c) - d) None.
       
V. Reports of Success
    U 129                1 ship                6,000 GRT
                  1 destroyer.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
15.December 1943.
 
 
 
I.
U 68
-
DH 44
U 275
-
BE 59
U 510
-
FL 58
U 734
-
AL 47
 
86
-
AL 77
284
-
Op(AK 34)
515
-
Op(ET 60)
741
-
Op(AK 34)
 
92
-
Op(AK 39)
302
-
BE 83
516
-
DO 97
744
-
AL 21
 
103
-
CD 82
305
-
BE 59
530
-
Op(FB 80)
761
-
Op(AK 39)
 
107
-
Op(BD 35)
311
-
Op(AK 38)
541
-
Op(AK 98)
763
-
AO
 
139
-
Op(DB 38)
314
-
AO
543
-
Op(BD 31)
801
-
Op(AK 98)
 
154
-
CE 99
358
-
BF 64
544
-
Op(AK 62)
843
-
BF 61
 
155
-
CF 67
364
-
Op(AL 11)
545
-
AF 72
846
-
AE 91
 
170
-
BE 97
382
-
BF 73
618
-
Op(BD 34)
849
-
JJ 23
 
172
-
DS 65
390
-
AE 85
625
-
Op(AK 62)
850
-
CE 14
 
178
-
Op(MT 86)
391
-
BF 46
629
-
Op(AK 37)
952
-
BF 68
 
190
-
EQ 69
392
-
AE 84
641
-
BF 73
957
-
AO
 
193
-
Op(DM 19)
406
-
BF 58
645
-
Op(BD 35)
960
-
AE 79
 
219
-
DG 37
415
-
Op(AK 75)
653
-
Op(AK 62)
962
-
Op(AK 98)
 
228
-
BF 49
421
-
Op(AK 62)
667
-
Op(AK 98)
965
-
AO
 
269
-
BF 64
424
-
BF 52
672
-
Op(AK 39)
976
-
Op(AK 36)
 
270
-
BE 92
471
-
Op(AK 34)
716
-
AN 24
981
-
Op(AL 11)
                   
1060
-
AO
 
  On Return Passage:  U 68 - 86 - 103 - 154 - 155 - 170 - 190 - 219 - 228 - 269 - 358 - 391 - 424 - 516 - 734 - 843.
  Entered Port:  U 424 - Brest;  U 843 - Lorient;  U 269 - 358 - St. Nazaire;  U 952 - La Pallice.
  Sailed:  U 377 - Brest.
       
II. Air Reconnaissance:  In the area east of Group "Coronel 3".
       
III. Reports on the Enemy:
  a)  U.S.A. vessel reported at 0452 from BE 1944:  "Am being attacked by a U-boat".  (Intercept report).  Report is improbable.
  b)  Air reconnaissance without result, nothing sighted.
       
- 370 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  c)  British unit located in AK 9910.
  d)  According to Special Intercept messages the awaited ON convoy was proceeding on 12 December with course 2240.  Even if all other information is missing, the indication of course confirms the assumption by Control that the convoy is proceeding very far south.
       
IV. Current Operations:
  a)  One of the boats of "Coronel 2" reported a heavy westerly storm.  Group "Coronel 2 and 1" have, therefore, been instructed to take into account later arrival in the ordered position lines.  The boats are to remain in position line 2 as their patrol line.
    The patrol line for "Coronel 3" has been cancelled; the boats are to proceed at high speed to the south (owing to the weather probably only at 6 knots), since the course indicated for the ON convoy (see III d) passes to the south of the patrol line.
  b) - c) None.
  d)  U 86 was ordered twice to report on the weather, and has not answered.  There is anxiety regarding this boat.
       
V. Reports of Success:  None.
       
       
                                                                           For Flag Officer Commanding U-boats.
                                                                                        Chief of Operations.
       
 
 
 
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
- 371 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
   
Naval High Command.  
2 Naval War Staff/B.d.U. Op.  
Ref. No. Group Command 8409 AIa.
26 December 1943.
       
Most Secret
Operational Order for Mercator Boats
       
I. Operation:
  1)  Transports to and from East Asia.
  2) Procedure according to Commanding Officer's Handbook, Standing War Orders, Current Orders and Special Instructions of Flag Officer Commanding U-boats (Admonitory Radio Messages).
  3) Freedom of movement.
       
II. Reports regarding the enemy, situation on 15 September 1943:  (only as far as is necessary for boat).
  4) Atlantic Patrols:
    The total number of all British and American destroyers, gunboats, frigates and corvettes operating in the whole North and South Atlantic for the protection of convoys, heavy naval forces and for active operations is approximately 350.
  5) Enemy Merchant Ships  (only as far as is necessary for boat).
     Almost the whole merchant shipping in the North and Middle Atlantic has been proceeding in convoy since the end of the year 1942.  (Exception:  Fast, single vessels over 15 knots and stragglers separated from the convoys).
    A. Convoys:
     
a) England to Gibraltar   
  Type and designation of convoy:   
  KMF
=
"Kingdom - Mediterranean - fast", troop transports, speed 12.3 knots, once a month, consisting of about 30 ships.
  KMS
=
"Kingdom - Mediterranean - slow", freighters, speed 9 knots, schedule 10 days, consisting of about 30 ships.
  MKF
=
"Mediterranean - Kingdom - fast", returning troop transports as KMF.
  MKS
=
"Mediterranean - Kingdom - slow", returning freighters as KMS.
   
The convoys proceed between longitudes 15 to 220 West and further West, proceeding south on the west side.
b)
North America - Gibraltar
   
Since the occupation of North Africa convoys are
 
 
 
- 372 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
     
  on this route, leaving the harbor of New York on the America side, and Gibraltar and Casablanca on the African side.
  Designation:
  UGS
=
"USA - Gibraltar - slow", speed 9 knots, freighters, schedule 10 days, consisting of about 60 ships.
  UGF
=
"USA - Gibraltar - fast", speed 12.3 knots, troop transports, once a month, consisting of about 15 - 20 ships.
  GUS
=
"Gibraltar - USA - slow", returning freighters as GUS.
  GUF
=
"Gibraltar - USA - fast", returning troop transports as UGF.
 
The convoy routes lie between 30 to 400 North, convoys coming from America proceed in the southern sector, those proceeding to America in the northern sector of this strip.  Strong evasive action, especially to the south, after attacks on this traffic.
    B. Air Patrol:
     
a) Large flying boats and Land-based aircraft
  As a result of the completion of air bases in England, Iceland, Newfoundland, West coast of Africa and East coast of South America, Ascension Island and the occupation  of the Azores, the enemy has been enabled to patrol the North and Middle Atlantic almost completely and the South Atlantic to a great extent, with large land-based aircraft.  Even in very heavy weather large aircraft are always to be reckoned with.
b) Carrier-borne Aircraft
  Since the Spring of 1943 the enemy has been using auxiliary aircraft-carriers in the northern part of the North Atlantic for the protection of the area, needing heavy patrols, between 25 and 400 West and particularly in the area of the America - Gibraltar convoy routes.  These stay for a long time in this area and when there are U-boat attacks proceed to the aid of the endangered convoys.
  The auxiliary aircraft-carriers are converted, fast merchant steamers up to 14,000 GRT, from which up to 30 machines can take off.
  See Current Order No. 10, 11, 13, 15.
c) Method of Attack
  While large aircraft and flying boats attack usually from a low level (20 to 100 m.) and
 
 
 
- 373 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
     
  release their bombs in series, carrier-borne aircraft usually attack in a nose dive from a great altitude.   A combined attack has been observed by 2 or more machines in which the first attacked the machine gun crews, while the next machines following up closely attacked the boat with rocket bombs and comparatively small caliber explosive depth-charges or with one depth-charge.  (Latest experiences see Current Order No. 15).
  6) Sea Patrol
    a) There is always a small number of U-boat chaser groups at sea, which can be guided by aircraft to U-boats.  They remain in the areas in which incoming and outgoing convoys are awaited, as well as on the suspected approach and return routes of our U-boats, that is for example in BE 50 and 60, north half, and in the area of the aircraft carriers.
    b) For General situation in Biscay and Atlantic see Current Orders Nos. 10 and 11, which are supplemented always by radio messages.
  7) Enemy U-boats   There is danger of U-boats everywhere.  The areas specially dangerous are those off the bases, Straits of Gibraltar.  Also in mid-Atlantic enemy, especially American U-boats, must be reckoned with.  Since our own U-boats are also in nearly all parts of the Atlantic and their positions are often not known exactly by Control, any enquiries whether a U-boat sighted is one of our own are nearly always to no purpose.
       
III. Information regarding our own Forces:
  10) Warships
    a) Operations by our own surface forces are also possible within the operational area.  They will be notified beforehand.
    b) In the direct vicinity of our own coasts and those of occupied area our own forces and merchant vessels and specially minesweeper and patrol units may be expected, without it being possible to notify regarding these in every case beforehand.  Report on any suspicious vessel.  The boats will be notified regarding our own movements outside these limits.
    c) Activities by our own Air Force extend to about 250 West but are very slight west of 120 West.  Every aircraft flying directly off our own coasts must be assumed to be an enemy aircraft.
  11) Auxiliary Cruisers, Blockade-runners
    a) Marking on deck U 1510 to 1540.
 
 
 
- 374 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
    b) If any of the above are expected to appear in the operational or approach areas of the U-boats, attacks on single vessels will be prohibited in the areas in question for operational U-boats.  This will be notified by a radio message to all boats as follows:
      Code word:  "Kammerarrest".
      Dates for beginning and end of the time during which attacks are prohibited.  Prohibited area will be given according to the connecting positions with coded squares.
       
     
Example: (Code squares already deciphered)
  Radio message Naval Office.
    All boats
  Code word "Kammerarrest"
  1) From midnight on 12 April to midnight 16 April CD 7975, CE 8886, DS 3498, DQ 1688.
  2) From 17 April to 20 April midnight DQ 1688, DS 3498, ER 3164, EP 1355.
Meaning: 1) From 12 April midnight to 16 April midnight attack is prohibited on single vessels in the area within the connecting line of 350 North 450 West over 350 North, 300 West, over 250 North 300 West over 250 North 500 West to the outgoing point.  Our own blockade runner is in the prohibited area.
  2) From 17 to 20 April attack is prohibited on single vessels in the area within the connecting line of 250 North 500 West over 250 North 300 West, over 100 North 300 West over 100 North 500 West to the outgoing point.  Our own blockade runner is in the prohibited area.
    c) As a rule there will be no further notification.  The ships in question can be camouflaged in any manner and carry any kind of armament; they may proceed on a deceptive course.
      In the prohibited area operational boats are permitted to attack only:
      1)  Convoys
      2)  Single vessels directly escorted by close escort vessels.
    d) When blockade-runners are brought in or put out through our own inshore waters (BF, AF) the boats will be specially notified regarding the setting up of a German escort by destroyers or torpedo boats.
 
 
 
- 375 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
IV. Carrying out the Operation
  12)  The most important task is the safe passage of the boat to its port of destination.
     The following are, therefore, necessary:  Avoid contact with the enemy as much as possible, proceed outside the operational areas of our own boats and groups, by-pass area with increased enemy sea and air reconnaissance as far as possible without deviating from route too much (see Convoy Routes 5 a, b).   Deviate from any enemy forces reported.
  13) Conditions necessary for carrying out safely the transport operation are the sharpest attention by the watch on the bridge, and perfect training of the whole crew and good control in cases of surprise.
  14) The Commanding Officer must be thoroughly aquatinted with the contents of the Standing War Orders, Current Orders and the Hand Book for U-boat Commanding Officers.  Neglect in carrying out the precautionary measures given in these Orders has in many cases led to the loss of boats.
  15)  Put out according to Departure Order, as soon as possible reaching deep water.
  16) From the time when the escorts leave her, the boat will be in enemy territory in constant danger from aircraft, U-boats and U-boat chasers.  It is the duty of the Commanding Officer to set up quickly complete material readiness by eliminating faults, leaks, etc., and readiness of personnel by immediate practices of stations and breakdown exercises.
  17)  If elimination of faults, leakages, etc. confirmed on putting out does not appear possible with the means on board, the Commanding Officer should weigh most carefully the question of turning back and putting into harbor again (in order to repair faults in harbor).  Commanding Officers and Engineer Officers who fail in their lack of responsibility will be called to account after their return.
  18) Boats' procedure on passage from West France into the Atlantic or in the operational area (when appropriate as non-operational boats), according to Current Order No. 13, which will be amended according to the latest experiences.  See also Current Orders Nos. 10, 11, 15.
  19) Economize on fuel while cruising (most economical cruising speed) as long as particularly dangerous areas are not being passed.
  20) Only the Commanding Officer can decide to return in case of damage.
  21)  Control of the route of the boat is effected by radio on the temporary wave-length for the area.
 
 
 
- 376 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  22)  The port of destination in Japan is Penang.  Passage thence outside the line squares CF 67, DG 56, DS 68, FL 19, JJ 45, KS 35 (only a guide).
  23) Refueling, if necessary, in Mid-Atlantic from U-tankers, or, if necessary, in the Indian Ocean in the area approximately square KS.  There are several German tankers in the Indian Ocean for this purpose.  Their outward characteristics will be duly sent by radio.
  24)  The boat will be met by Japanese escort vessels off Penang and piloted in.  The point where escorts will take over is at present; 60 10' North  940 50' East, as far as not ordered to the contrary by radio.  The boats will be taken over 1 hour after dawn.
  25)  In Penang there is an extensive U-boat base under German control, with dock completed and facilities for rest by the crew.  More extensive dock work (docking, ballast) is done in Shonan (Singapore).  Control of all matters by the Base Officer in Penang.  Communication with home is controlled by the Base Officer in Penang.
  26)  Freedom of movement.
  27)  Freedom of movement.
       
V. Orders regarding Communications:
  (Not only the Wireless Officer but also the Commanding Officer must be also aquatinted with these Orders and with the Short Signal Manual).
  28) The Standing War Orders Communications Regulations - "N.B. U-boats" - apply for radio traffic to port of destination and back.  Control of the boats is effected to port of destination over wave-lengths for U-boats.
  29) For further passage via Penang out to the East or in case of co-operation with surface vessels in the Indian Ocean and Japanese waters, regulations "Communications Order for the East-Asian Area" apply.  The Mercator boats are to be supplied by the Flotilla with this Order and with the data stated therein under Section V.
  30) Recognition signals:  See "Communications Order for the East-Asian Area", Section VI.
  31)  In Penang the W/T station is to be switched off on approval for the Base Officer.  In Penang or Japanese harbors sending is prohibited.  Permission to send only through local German or Japanese stations.
  32) Report.  See "Communications Order for East-Asian Area", Section VII.
 
 
 
- 377 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  33) Freedom of movement.
  34) Further, special reference is made to the following points:
  35)  As far as possible use short signals.
  36)  Messages are to be sent:
    a) When ordered.
    b) When the boat has been detected with certainty; in the case of enemy sightings which are important for the operations of other boats.  (Report after withdrawing for sufficient distance).
    c) If faults occur in weapons, gear and apparatus, when occurring frequently or basic fault is presumed.
    d) When proceeding out from West France by means of short signal, giving degrees or position, from area between 17 and 200 West.
    e) When returning by means of short signal, if possible 48 or 36 hours before arrival at point of rendezvous with escorts.
  37)  Under way, the following short signal should be ready to send and given immediately upon attack:
     "Am being attacked by aircraft.  Square. . . . . . . .   Signature".
  38) Always consider when sending messages:
    a) How far is Control informed of the situation?
    b) What will Control learn from my new situation?
    c) Will sending my message prove a disadvantage to other boats here and now?  If so, is my message so important that I must take that risk?
    d) What is the most important to Control, if I decide to make a radio message for special reasons?  e.g. short weather report, fuel situation and condition of boat.
    e) After sending the message, have I expressed myself as shortly and, especially, as clearly as possible, or can I be misunderstood considering what the other know or do not know.
  39)  Radio messages are to be made in general at dusk and before making any extensive alteration in course, if they are not ordered to be made "at once".
  40)  Place names may not be used in radio messages, if present or future position of U-boats is shown by the message.  In such cases always use designation by squares.
 
 
 
- 378 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  41)  Look out for radio repeats.  This is a particularly important service in large areas and with difficult traffic conditions.
  42)  Sending radio beacons.  The sending of a radio beacon constitutes an additional danger, for the boat sending, of being discovered, therefore do not instruct if fix and visibility are good, and only as a precautionary measure.
  43) When proceeding in shallow water in enemy territory attention must be paid to preparations for destroying code books.  Make sure that documents in red are so placed that water can reach them.  It is particularly important to deal with code books and radio messages as far as destruction of finished matter is concerned.  (See Standing War Order #231).
       
VI. Miscellaneous:
  44)  Freedom of movement.
  45)  Freedom of movement.
  46)  Freedom of movement.
  47)  Freedom of movement.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       
       
   
Naval High Command  
2nd Division Naval War Staff B.d.U. Op.  
Ref. No. Group Command Secret 539 Ing.
10.12.1943.
       
U-boat Situation on 1 December 1943
       
I.   
In service on 1 November 1943:  
413
Commissioned in November  
25
   
438
Paid off (U 48)  
1
Losses in November, operations  
16
                                      home waters  
2
In service on 1 December 1943:  
419
In addition, foreign boats:  home waters  
7
(UDI paid off on 22.11)  
                                              operations  
2
Given to Japan up to now  
1
       
II.   
Losses during November:      
Atlantic:
Type VII:
U 211, 226, 274, 280, 282, 405, 420, 600, 707
9
  Type IX: U 508, 533, 536, 538, 542, 842
6
  Type IXD2: U 848
1
     
Mediterranean:
None.
   
North Sea: None.    
Black Sea: None.    
Home Waters:
Type VII:
U 718, 768
2
     
18
 
 
 
- 379 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
  Loss in detail - see enclosure.
       
III. Distribution of boats:
     
II
VIIa
VIIb/c
VIIf
VIId
IXb/c
IXd
IXd2
1)  Operational    
6
-
115
-
2
29
-
7
2)  Trial, own training, and experimental boats    
 -
-
130
-
-
25
-
7
3)  School, foreign training boats    
  33
3
   49
4
-
   3
-
-
     
39
3
294
4
2
57
-
14
       
 
Xb
XIV
XVII
Total
Foreign
 
1)  159
1
1
-
161
2
 
2)  166
1
1
-
168
-
 
3)    88
-
-
2
  90
7
 
     413
2
2
2
419
9
       
  Note to III
  The distribution of boats under III is effected according to the following principles:
  1) Operational boats:  Boats which are under way to operations.
  2)  Trial, own training, and experimental boats:  Boats under trial.  Boats under training for operations and school purposes.
    Boats withdrawn for experiments.
    Boats requiring work to be done.
  Boats being equipped.
  3)  School, foreign training boats:  Boats temporarily withdrawn for school purposes including training flotillas.  Boats definitely withdrawn for school purposes.
       
  In November:
 
Boats went into operation for first time  
+
17
Total number increased by  
+
6
* Number of operational boats increased by  
+
0
Number of trial boats decreased by  
-
7
Number of school boats increased by  
+
13
* U 712, unable to dive, on 4.11 to Kiel      
 
 
 
- 380 -
 
 
     

 

     
     
 
       
IV. Distribution of operational boats on 1.12.1943:
       
 
Atlantic
129
 
Mediterranean
14
 
North Sea
12
 
Black Sea
6
 
 
161
 
       
V. In the Atlantic in November:
       
 
Daily average at sea 78  
of these, in the operational area 32  
Under way 46  
of the latter, on return passage 19  
       
VI. Put out into the Atlantic in November:
       
 
From home waters
17
From France and Norway
21
       
       
                                                                      For Flag Officer Commanding U-boats
                                                                                     Chief of Operations
                                                                                              GODT.
       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 
 
 
  Enclosure to 2 Naval War Staff / B.d.U. Operations.
  Group Command.  Secret  539 Ing.
   
  Enclosure to II (Losses in detail).
   
 
U 211 Veteran boat.  Last report 11.11 west of Biscay area.  Cause of loss unknown.
   
U 226 Veteran boat, new Commanding Officer.  Last report on 17.10.  West of Biscay area.  Cause of loss unknown.
   
U 274 First trip.  Last report on 22.10.  west of Ireland.  Cause of loss unknown.
   
U 280 First trip.  Last report on 16.11. from Atlantic west of Biscay area.  Loss probably by aircraft attack.
   
U 282 1st trip.  Last report on 24.10. west of Iceland.  Cause of loss unknown.
   
U 405 Veteran boat.  Last report on 30.10. from the Atlantic east of Newfoundland.  Cause of loss unknown.
   
U 420 2nd trip.  Last report on 20.10. from Biscay area.  Cause of loss unknown.
   
U 600 Veteran boat.  Last report on 23.11. east of the Azores.  Loss probably off a convoy.