Above us the Waves

The Story of Midget Submarines and Human Torpedoes

James Benson, C E T Warren

Date Published :
October 2007
Publisher :
Pen and Sword
Binding. : Paperback
ISBN : 9781844154401
Pages : 256
Dimensions : 7.75 X 5 inches
Stock Status : Out of stock


It was the Italians who pioneered the use of two-man human torpedoes or ‘chariots’, and their attacks on ships of the Royal Navy in Alexandria Harbour in 1941 caused Winston Churchill to write to the Chief of Staffs committee to enquire what was being done to emulate these daring attacks. The result was the development of British ‘chariots’ which were regarded as stop-gaps until the X-craft or midget submarines could be deployed.

The book is divided into five parts. The first covers the development, training, growing pains and the attempt on the Tirpitz, the second and third to Mediterranean and Norwegian operations, while the fourth deals with the coast of Fortress Europe and the Normandy Beaches. Part Five considers the special preparations for the Far East and the exploits achieved in the fight against the Japanese. There are several appendices and an index to complete an absorbing record of a novel and important innovation in warfare.

About The Author

The authors both served in the special submarine branch about which they write; C E T Warren was one of the first two men to ride a human torpedo. James Benson commanded the last midget submarine in commission off British shores at the conclusion of European hostilities.

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