Saturday, January 30, 2010

Day 153 January 31, 1940

Just after midnight, U-13 sinks Norwegian steamer SS Start (carrying coal from Sunderland) with 1 torpedo halfway between Stavanger, Norway & Aberdeen, Scotland (all 16 lives lost).

U-21 has torpedo troubles. 2 torpedoes fired at Danish SS Vidar (carrying steel from Grimsby) malfunction but the third strikes Vidar (16 lives lost), immobilizing her 25 miles East of Aberdeen. Danish steamer SS Disko stops to pick up 18 survivors; U-21 fires another dud torpedo at her. SS Vidar finally sinks the next day.

Commander Timoshenko has spent 3 weeks preparing to assault the Mannerheim Line. He has 12 fresh divisions on the Karelian Isthmus & artillery lined up side by each. Opposite the Summa gap alone, he has 400 heavy artillery pieces (200 mm calibre or more) and innumerable smaller 75 & 45 mm guns, which are not camouflaged due to the Finns lack or artillery & attack aircraft. Soviet artillery has been pulverizing Finnish forts all month. Timoshenko is ready.

No comments:

Post a Comment