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The Battle of Jutland

In: Historical Events

Submitted By AlsaH
Words 639
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The Battle of Jutland took place on May 31st 1916 between the German High seas fleet and the British Royal Navy. It was the largest naval battle of the First World War with the Royal Navy launching the first super battleship HMS. Dreadnought and a similar battle cruiser HMS. Invincible. Both sides claimed victory but nothing had changed, the British Navy still claimed the seas and the blockade was never broken but they suffered more casualties than the German High Seas Fleet. The blockade of the North Sea gave the allies an advantage as it caused an estimate of 424,000 deaths by starvation because of the reduction in raw materials and foodstuffs to the central powers.

The decision to create the high seas fleet was the ambition of the Kaiser Wilhelm II to have a fighting fleet that would rival non other than that of Britain's. The British royal navy was the biggest in the world. Responsible for world wide colonization and the transport of commerce around the world. It was the ruler of the waves. There was also the North Sea that was Germany’s only gateway to the open seas and it could be blockaded. That did happen once the war began, the British navy blockaded the North Sea which effectively cut off any imports of raw materials and supplies to Germany. It was connected to the larger war strategies of the Allies as the the blockade would bring the Germans to an eventual Armistice due to the effects on the people of Germany, and the arrival of the Americans into the War.

It was the German High Seas Fleet that set up a trap to lure in a part of the British Royal Navy to destroy it due to the distant blockade set up. The Plan was to conduct a publicized cruiser sweep along the coasts of Norway and Sweden, the British battlecruisers would certainly move away from base after the cruiser. German submarines would be ready offshore and the High seas fleet would ambush the British battle cruisers and destroy them in order to break through the blockade. It was not a successful plan. The British Navy was able to break the German codes and so when the time came, not one battle cruiser, but the entire Royal Navy of more than 100 ships was set out. It was confronted with about 40 German Ships. During the main battle the British used the changes in the weather which bought on early darkness in the battle to their advantage, scoring decisive blows. But the Germans, although considerably outnumbered, did retaliate with the sinking of many British ships including the Queen Mary and the Invincible in just a few minutes. Both sides suffered severe casualties with the Royal Navy losing 14 ships and 6000 men and the Germans 9 ships and 2,500 men.

Specifically the Battle of Jutland had no winners, but it did contribute in ending the larger war itself and eventually the high seas fleet all together. Each side claimed its own victory. The German High Seas fleet was not successful in breaking the blockade by the Royal Navy but had sunk more British ships. If it had been successful it would have had a big impact on the British troops in France in terms of arms and left the North Sea for invasion. Nothing had changed as the Battle had not affected the British Naval superiority nor did it break the blockade of the North Sea.

Recently there have been scans of the Battle Area that show the battered wreck of HMS Invincible one of the war ships that was destroyed during the Battle in 1916. The ensigns flown by British warships at the battle of Jutland are being prepared for display at the National museum of the Royal Navy in London.

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