Warcovers :: NAVAL :: 1917 (Sept) Military PC MALTA to Japan. Japanese Destroyer 'MOMO' censored

1917 (Sept) Military PC MALTA to Japan. Japanese Destroyer 'MOMO' censored

1917 (Sept) Military PC MALTA to Japan. Japanese Destroyer 'MOMO' censored
Naval postcard from member of Destroyer Momo at Valetta during Operation in Mediterranean in WWI
Yokohama, (?).11.6(1917)
From) Saito, Destroyer Momo
To) Ensign Pay Officer Yoshikawa & Ensign Pay Officer Gondo, c/o Sasebo Marine Corps
; Naval postcard marked Gunji Yubin(Military Post) & Ken-etsuzumi(Censored).
Written, I wish you may be fine! 6th September. on PPC depicting VALETTA MALTA Mercato Marina.
On 10th February 1917, the Japanese Cabinet conceded to British requests by creating a Second Special Squadron. Just a week later the flotilla left Japan for Malta via Singapore, Colombo, Aden and Port Said. It consisted of eight destroyers, the Ume, Kusunoki, Kaede, Katsura, Kashiwa, Matsu, Sugi and Sakaki, under the command of Admiral Sato Kozo on board the cruiser Akashi. It entered its base at Grand Harbour on 16th April 1917, escorting the Saxon, an English troop transport, from Port Said.

By then, German and Austrian submarines operating in the Mediterranean were sinking Allied shipping at an alarming rate. In April 1917, Allied losses totalled 218,000 tons, seven per cent of total sinking during the entire war. By the end of WWI, the Allies lost 12 million tons of shipping, a quarter in the Mediterranean.

The Second Special Squadron began its escort duties by protecting Allied shipping between Marseilles, France, Taranto and Cairo. Its arrival was timely, with vital reinforcements shifting to France after the bloody offensives at Arras, Chemin des Dames and in Champagne.

Japanese warships participated in the dramatic rescue of troops from the torpedoed transport Transylvania on May 4, 1917. Some 413 men died in this tragedy off the French coast, but Japanese, French and Italian naval forces saved most of the 3,000 troops despite the danger of further torpedo attack. The Admiralty congratulated the Japanese admiral for their sterling support.

The Japanese navy relieved the Akashi in June 1917 with the armoured cruiser Izumo, and reinforced the Malta squadron with the destroyers Kashi, Hinoki, Momo and Yanagi. The four 'Momo type cruiser including Yanagi arrived in Malta in August 1917 as the 15th Flotilla with cruiser 'Izumo' to add to the Japanese contribution to convoy protection in the Mediterranean. As the tempo of anti-submarine operations in the Mediterranean accelerated, Japanese sailors temporarily manned two British gunboats, which they designated the Tokyo and Saikyo, and two British destroyers, renamed the Kanran and Sendan.

At peak strength in 1917, the Japanese Mediterranean flotilla numbered 17 warships.

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Item Code 313-001
 
Price: £350.00
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