Monday, May 27, 2013

This Day in History: May 27, 1941: Bismarck sunk by Royal Navy

File:Bundesarchiv Bild 193-04-1-26, Schlachtschiff Bismarck.jpg 

On May 27, 1941, the British navy sinks the German battleship Bismarck in the North Atlantic near France. The German death toll was more than 2,000.

 File:Bundesarchiv Bild 101II-MN-1361-16A, Schlachtschiff Bismarck, Indienststellung.jpg

On February 14, 1939, the 823-foot Bismarck was launched at Hamburg. Nazi leader Adolf Hitler hoped that the state-of-the-art battleship would herald the rebirth of the German surface battle fleet. However, after the outbreak of war, Britain closely guarded ocean routes from Germany to the Atlantic Ocean, and only U-boats moved freely through the war zone.

 File:Bundesarchiv DVM 10 Bild-23-63-41, Schlachtschiff "Bismarck".jpg

 File:Bundesarchiv Bild 146-1989-012-03, Schlachtschiff Bismarck in der Ostsee.jpg
In May 1941, the order was given for the Bismarck to break out into the Atlantic. Once in the safety of the open ocean, the battleship would be almost impossible to track down, all the while wreaking havoc on Allied convoys to Britain. Learning of its movement, Britain sent almost the entire British Home Fleet in pursuit.

 File:Bismarck reconnaissance.jpg

 File:Bundesarchiv Bild 146-1984-055-14, Schlachtschiff Bismarck, nach Seegefecht.jpg

On May 24, the British battle cruiser Hood and battleship Prince of Wales intercepted it near Iceland. In a ferocious battle, the Hood exploded and sank, and all but three of the 1,421 crewmen were killed. The Bismarck escaped, but because it was leaking fuel it fled for occupied France. On May 26, it was sighted and crippled by British aircraft, and on May 27 three British warships descended on the Bismarck and finished it off.
 File:Bundesarchiv Bild 146-1968-015-25, Schlachtschiff Bismarck, Seegefecht.jpg
 File:HMS Ark Royal h85716.jpg
 File:HMS Ark Royal swordfish.jpg
 File:Rodney firing on Bismarck.png
 File:HMS Dorsetshire Bismarck survivors.jpg
 File:Bismarck illustration.png
Taken from: [27.05.2013]
bismarck ship, bismarck battleship, bismarck sinking, bismarck sunk 
File:Bb bismarck.png

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