Originally Posted by Split
Yes, it gets to loyal Britishers when they hear the Americans talk about their war effort. However, like it or not, I'm afraid that it is true and they can be very proud of what they did. The British and their allies, brave as they were, were going to lose the war without the Americans on all fronts. The sheer weight of American production turned into a war machine was awesome. Over 500 hundred t-2s were constructed, along with Liberties, Victories and all sorts of other craft. Hitler was sinking more British tonnage than we could build. The Americans turned that around. This does not demean our efforts, but it faces facts. We could not have won without the Americans.
I very much agree with this view. I went to sea in late 1943 after spending a whole year trying to get accepted into a liner company as an apprentice. I still have the letters of refusal and many refer to the ship losses as being so severe that they have stopped taking on new applicants as apprentices.
It was a touch and go as to whether that Atlantic bridge would hold and it is recognised by historians that the critical convoy battles took place in the Spring of 1943 (refer Jurgen Rohwer's book, The Critical Convoy Battles, March 1943).
I befriended a German U.Boat P.O.W. in late 1945 and we still correspond. He has given me 5 huge volumes in German, of the entire history of DER U.BOOT KRIEG (The U.Boat war), and in the volume entitled DEUTSCHE U-BOOT-ERFOLGE (successes) no fewer than 73 pages are devoted to listing all the ships sunk by U.Boats alone! There is no doubt that had the Americans NOT given us enormous help, before they came into the war and after, the Battle of the Atlantic would have been lost.
The Liberty ship was the tool that turned the tide.