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vonKaiser

The Great War - Goeben & Breslau

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WWI is the conflict that got me mainly interested in history.  I know most about the air war, aircraft, aces, etc, but since the World of Warship bug hit me I've been finding myself branching into the Naval battles of the time.  Kind of rekindled my thirst for knowledge really.  For the longest time I'd read papers/books in the realm I knew much information about, but to read/watch things where I don't know much makes me want to learn more, and more, and more.  One of my favorite channels on the WWI subject has been "The Great War" so I was very happy to see a video on SMS Goeben and SMS Breslau and the interesting history these German Ships had with the Ottoman empire.

 

 

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I enjoyed that actually. One thing he didn't really mention was the humiliation the RN felt letting these two ships escape their much larger fleet in the eastern Mediterranean. Their ham-fisted grabbing of the two ships built for Turkey (and paid for with public funds) gave the perfect opening for the Germans with Goeben and Breslau.

I've covered the Breslau in my pre-dreadnought thread (plus some dreadnoughts and battlecuisers), and I'll put the info here:

Spoiler

5964e6b67e8cd_FFGoeben2.jpg.14e162302726a50fda79944cebfe8e52.jpg

Notes

Along with a few other ships included who were not pre-dreadnoughts per se, the Goeben is an obvious collector's item and a unique battlecruiser from the WW I era, perhaps the most famous that ever existed along with HMS Hood. She obviously had to be included here.

"SMS Goeben was named for Prussian infantry General August Karl von Goeben and her keel was laid down on August 28th, 1909 and commissioned on July 2nd, 1912. The technical developments brought to the table by this shipbuilder included hardened steel (by Krupp) making it possible to build a battlecruiser with armor that could survive 6-inch (150mm) fire hits while, at the same time, being able to field battleship-caliber 11.1-inch main guns when engaging enemy cruisers, destroyers and cargo ships. The design used less armor than a traditional battleship of the period, allowing more speed to help the vessel escape from larger capital ships

Goeben was a trim ship with a low silhouette and carried 34 total guns as built, including a main armament of five twin-gun turrets holding 10x11.1-inch (28.3cm) SK L/50 (280mm) main guns capable of sending a 1,000lb shell a distance of 14 miles (513yd)(23km). She had a maximum speed of 28.4 knots.

When war broke out in 1914 The Goeben and the light cruiser Breslau made for the port of Messina, outrunning the British ships by way of their superior inherent speed. After coaling the ships broke out of the Strait of Messina heading east; British Admiral Milne attempted to close in with HMS Indefatigable and HMS Indomitable but was unsuccessful.

Goeben and Breslau arrived in Turkish waters near the Gallipoli Coast. Upon receiving word about the German ships, the Ottoman government provided a visa to Admiral Souchon and the two warships were allowed to stay in Turkish waters. The British had just been embarrassed as their numerically superior fleet failed to catch the Germans during a 1,000 mile chase. The two ships were tempting chess pieces in terms of the naval superiority over the Mediterranean, Marmara and Black Seas for the Central Powers. It only took hours for the Turkish government to accept the offer to purchase the vessels. Germany, in turn, accepted and transferred ownership of Goeben and Breslau to the Ottoman Navy on August 16th, 1914. This new naval power made Goeben the pivotal piece that convinced the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire to walk the path of war alongside Germany.

Goeben was named after the famous Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Yavuz Sultan Selim while Breslau was christened Midilli after the capital of the island of Lesbos in the Aegean (conquered by the Turks in 1462 and ruled by the Ottoman Empire until the First Balkan War in 1912, to which Greece took the island from the Turks). Accordingly, Yavuz Sultan Selim now flew the Turkish naval flag and became the flagship of the Ottoman Empire Navy, albeit with her original German crew.

The Yavuz saw numerous actions in the Black Sea against the Russians during the war. After the defeat of the Central Powers, due to the Treaty of Sevres between the Ottoman Empire and the Allies, Yavuz was to be handed over to the Royal Navy as a war prize. Due to her not being seaworthy, the Royal Navy left her in Sevastopol. In 1923, after the Turkish War of Independence, the Treaty of Sevres was replaced by the Treaty of Lausanne which required Turkish warships, including Yavuz, to be repatriated back to the Turkish Navy. After the war, Yavuz was the only German-built battlecruiser still in service. From 1918 until 1926, she remained in the port city of Izmit, rusting at dockside.

Stationed in the Gulf of Izmit since1948, Yavuz was finally decommissioned and placed in reserve on December 20th, 1950. She remained inactive at anchor for four years and stricken from the Turkish Naval register on November 14th, 1954. Her name was painted over and she was assigned the hull number "B70". Seventeen years passed until B70 was sold for scrap to the M.K.E. Seyman company in 1971. Her last voyage was being towed by tugs to the scrapyard on June 7th, 1973 and, by February 1976, her hull had been loaded onto barges heading for steel mills to be melted down. The end of an honorable career lasting some sixty-four years, the vessel was the last of the European dreadnoughts in existence."

from: http://www.militaryfactory.com/ships/detail.asp?ship_id=SMS-Goeben

Where would this ship appear in WoWs? Tier IV perhaps with her 11.1 inch main guns; I'll leave that to those better able to assess her in game terms. The photo above shows how incredibly low-slung she is--with a smaller detection range and very good speed she would be a stealthy ship.

 

My thread on pre-dreadnoughts; drop in and vote if you haven't already:

 

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On 6/12/2018 at 7:50 PM, GENAlphawolf said:

the possibility of seeing these in game at some point?

TBH, if Goeben was brought into the game it'd be a slightly less armored, smaller gunned, faster version of the Kaiser.  Or if they introduced her as Yavuz where her boilers were upgraded and she was given better fire controls... 

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42 minutes ago, vonKaiser said:

TBH, if Goeben was brought into the game it'd be a slightly less armored, smaller gunned, faster version of the Kaiser.  Or if they introduced her as Yavuz where her boilers were upgraded and she was given better fire controls... 

Id like to see her as the Yavuz as a premium ship for a whole new nation.

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The only Imperial German dreadnought to have survived long enough to take part in NATO exercises is some achievement of its own.

 

 

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