- Hardcover: 253 pages
- Publisher: SOS Free Stock (Nov. 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1557503729
- ISBN-13: 978-1557503725
- Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 16.5 x 24.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,451,189 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- See Complete Table of Contents
Hirschfeld: The Story of a U-Boat Nco 1940-1946 Hardcover – Nov 1996
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Top Customer Reviews
U-234 sailed from Japan in mid-April 1945 carrying a number of important passengers, some of whom were to help the Japanese produce the Me 262 jet aircraft. The boat also carried some 240 tons of cargo that mainly consisted of spares and general supplies for U-boats, U-boat bases and other German naval stations in East Asia, but also included 93 tons of various items for the Japanese armed forces. For many years, stories about the latter have centred primarily on 560 kgs of uranium oxide and claims that at least one complete example of an Me 262 jet aircraft was aboard. While it is true that U-234 was indeed carrying uranium oxide for the Japanese Army, prompting lurid speculation about its purpose, exactly why it was being sent to Japan is still not known.
The Hirschfeld/Brooks account of the loading of the uranium oxide is fanciful and absurd, to say the least. According to the book, Hirschfeld apparently stood on the bridge watching two Japanese senior officers on their hands and knees on the foredeck yet was able to see them writing "U-235" on ten 9-inch square containers that were then put into one of the vertical mine shaft containers. That Hirschfeld's eyesight was so good is beyond belief, but the episode is complete invention.Read more ›
Hirschfeld was a communications NCO on various German submarines and the book provides a good first person perspective on serving on an U-boat. Since he was a radio man he had access to a wealth of information making his story even better. This book is surprising in detail, everything from lice to being captured and well treated by the US Navy. And the action is described in such a way that you want the U-boat to succeed.
For anyone who enjoyed Das Boot or has the slightest interest in the War of the Atlantic I heartly recommend this book.