U.S. shipping was freed up prior to PH due to shrinking market access and increased business with the UK and then Soviet ships available after June 1941.
: Blockade Britain by any and all means. Germany
: knew how it felt, and its consequences.
: Empty or full, sink everything. Raeder's
: staff (not Donitz) calculated at the
: beginning of the war that British and
: Canadian shipyards could produce at maximum
: 1.6 million tons annually (tare).
: If they could neutralize that figure either
: by getting very close, equalizing or of
: course exceeding by sending it all to the
: bottom with torpedoes, bombs, whatever, then
: Britain was finished. That was all they had
: and that was the plan, whether the ship was
: full or empty.
: Almost...happened. Post war statistics show
: that the year 1941 cost Allied and neutral
: shipping 1.299 ships, displacing 4,328,558
: tons*, an increase of 240 ships and some
: 340,000 tons over the previous year.
: Submarine activity over those two years
: accounted for approx 4,350,000 tons so they
: were working and things were indeed looking
: dire for Britain. They were actually well
: exceeding their target.
: And then Herr Moron declared war on the
: United States. At the beginning of 1942 the
: same German staff estimated the enormous
: resources of the US shipyards were capable
: of producing 5 million tons annually for a
: start, and Raeder knew it was game over.
: Donitz, being a rabid nazi, never said die.
: *These figures are not tare.
: --Previous Message--
: This may seem kind of arcane, but...
: In The Enemy Below the captain (Mitchum)
: said his wife was killed when his ship was
: torpedoed heading WEST to the US and the
: implication is it was late(r) in the war.
: Because I apparently have to much time on my
: hands I started to think why would a U boat
: risk attacking a WEST bound ship let alone
: an entire convoy of empty ships that might
: be carrying German PoWs.
: I would think the emphasis would be on
: loaded ships, and I realized all of what I
: have read talks about attacks on east bound
: Yes I realize it's a nit to pick and it is a
: movie, albeit a good one.
: So did U Boats attack empty convoys headed
: west? Seems like an equal risk for much less
: gain and loaded ships heading east seem much
: more valuable given a choice.