Hutchinson's Pictorial History of the War, Series 14 No 4

BRITAIN“ EXPECTS, BRITAIN NEEDS” by the Rt. Hon. A.V. Alexander, First Lord of the Admiralty To-day (21st October, 1941) is the 130th anniversary of the great naval victory of Trafalgar which paved the way for the overthrow of Napoleon. Menaced by another dictator and living under the threat of an attempted invasion, there could be moreno appropriate day 011 which to remind you o f what the Navy is doing and to appeal to you to show your appreciation of its great labours bv wholehearted support o f “Warships Weeks” .Some will say there is surely no need to exalt the work of the Navy :Work of his hand, He nor commends nor grieves Pleads for itself the fact. Every sailor can plead that. We largely take that work for granted, but the men who hourly face the perils of the deep and enemy action can take nothing for granted for a single moment. The Navy is fighting at sea in which circumstances arc unprecedented. Our ships must be ever active and vigilant from Murmansk to the Dardanelles. There are escorts to provide for our trade in the Atlantic and for the numerous military convoys. The Far East must be watched we must safeguard the Dominions of the Commonwealth who have contributed so gallantly to our fight against a pagan suckled in a creed outworn. All this must be done with far fewer ships than the Admiralty should have to give the gallant officers and men who are called upon to fulfil such a variety of arduous tasks. It is natural that public opinion focuses upon highlights of the war at sea like the River Plate, Taranto, M atapan, and the destruction of the Bismarck. But remember the detail and routine, and the immense risks involved in the convoying of hundreds of thousands o f men to the Middle East and other places. It is little solace to those who lost loved ones during such opera­tions if I say how very few o f these great armies have been lost at sea during their transport. Yet there is the fact it is a tribute to the thoroughness of the Navy. In view of llie defection of (lie French Fleet, the entry of the Italian Navy into the war and the weight and int r A SWORDFISH OUT OF WATER Swordfish aircraft of the Fleet Air Arm, besides being dangerous in attack, as Axis ships have discovered, are also the eyes of the Navy. This one, being hoisted aboard H.M.S. Malaya, has just returned from a reconnaissance flight. r77
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