U-Boat Commander Apologizes for Sinking Ship!

“Goodnight. Sorry for sinking you” said Korvettenkapitän Karl Merten, Kommandant of U-68, after sinking the British merchant ship City of Cairo on 6 November 1942. After the ship went down he surfaced, came close abeam one of the lifeboats and made enquiry of what ship he had sunk. After being told, he gave them the best course to steer for land and apologized for sinking them.

(Source: Life Line: the Merchant Navy at War 1939-1945 by Peter Elphick. Three stars)

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SS City of Cairo in wartime livery. 

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Karl-Friedrich Merten, Wolfgang Lüth, Friedrich Guggenberger, and Werner Töniges receiving the Oak Leaves to the Knight’s Cross from Adolf Hitler, Karl-Jesco von Puttkamer, and Karl Dönitz.

[Images courtesy of Wikimedia.]

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Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website: http://charlesmccain.com/

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