(typed in soluble ink)   Copy No. 135__
     
Secret.
 
 
     
  Admiral Commanding U-boats standing war order - Op. No. 131*  
                                                                                            2nd January 1941  
     
  Behaviour towards French warships and merchant ships.  
     
 
A.   1. Treat as neutral all French warships and merchantmen belonging to the Government of unoccupied France.
  2. These are distinguished as follows:
    a) Warships:
      Tricolour stripes - blue - white - red - on their shields, on their gun-turrets, or on the conning towers of the submarines.
    b) Merchantmen.
      French colours on gunwale and upper deck with a yellow border on a black ground; French flag, with a yellow burgee below it.
    c) The ships have been told to carry these distinguishing marks clearly and visibly and to show lights at night.  Besides ordinary lighting they must also carry the prescribed lights at night.
  ** d) Merchantmen bearing the prescribed distinguishing marks as under a) and b) are to be treated as neutral even if they are armed. 
  3. The appearance of French ships must be reckoned with everywhere outside the blockade, especially in the zone of the mother country and the colonies.
  4. a) Movements of French merchantmen will not be notified to U-boats, except when they encroach upon the blockade area declared by England.  In the latter case the boats will be informed as accurately as possible.
    b) French merchantmen have full freedom of movement and attack within a coastal strip of 25 s.m. along the coast of West and Equatorial Africa.
  *** c) Course of French ships towards occupied territory:
      The course of French merchantmen and escorting warships lies as follows:
    I. Between Casablanca and Berlinga Islands: within a strip bounded:
      a)  On the west by a line between Casablanca - point 35° 30' N.  10° 30' W. - point 37° 00' N.  11° 00' W. - point 38° 30' N  10° 30' W. - Berlinga Islands.
      b)  On the east by a line between Casablanca - point 36° 30' N  10° 00' W.  - Cape Carvoeiro.
    II. North of the Berlinga Islands within Portuguese, Spanish and French territorial waters.
       
       
      *  "neu 126"   We 10/ii.
      ** slip written in red ink and marked "B.d.U. Op. g 867 K.2 We 8iii"
      ***  ordinary typed slip pasted at bottom of page.
       
 
 
     
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
Behaviour towards French ships, cont.
2
     
 
         German U-boats must therefore keep more than 35 s.m. away from the coast in these parts.
    Movements of French warships outside this coastal strip will be reported beforehand whenever possible.
  5. French ships to be treated as neutral as under 1. above are liable to treatment according to prize law if carrying contraband goods or otherwise contravening prize law.  Contraband regulations apply only to cargo, and then only if the latter is intended for areas under the command of the English or of de Gaulle.
       
B. 1. Treat as enemy ships:
    All French warships and merchantmen in English service or belonging to de Gaulle's sphere of influence.
* 2. These comprise:
    a) All French warships flying the British or de Gaulle flag.  This is a square-shaped blue flag with the red cross of Lorraine (=St. Andrew's - St. George's on top) in the middle.  De Gaulle's warships fly the French national flag at the stern and the de Gaulle flag at the bows.  But the mere lack of the distinguishing marks given under A.2.a. is not enough to mark warships as de Gaulle ships.
    b)  All French merchantmen not marked as described under A.2.
     
  3. The above-named French merchantmen are to be treated as enemy ships according to Art. 10 of prize law and their cargoes as the cargoes of enemy craft according to Art. 11 and 12 of prize law.
       
C.** De Gaulle aircraft carry the marks of the French Air Force, with the addition of a cockade with the red cross of Lorraine.
       
* ordinary typed slip paste over cancelled passage reading:
  These comprise all French warships and merchantmen not marked as described under A.  So far as we know, de Gaulle's warships fly the French national flag at the stern and a blue, square flag with the red cross of Lorraine in the middle, at the bows.
  French warships with crews of mixed nationalities fly the men's national flags.  De Gaulle's aircraft carry the distinguishing marks of the French Air Force, with the addition of a cockade with the red cross of Lorraine.
  The cross of Lorraine is a St. Andrew's cross with St. George's on top.
   
 
 
  **  Ordinary typed slip pasted below 3.  
     
     
     
                                                                                         signed    D ö n i t z  
     
     
 
 
 
 

 


 

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