Members’ Discussion Panel - The Battle of the Atlantic: The Battle which had to be Won

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Battle of the Atlantic Discussion PanelThe 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic will be commemorated in May 2013. It was the longest continuous military campaign in the Second World War, at its height from mid-1940 through to the end of 1943. Churchill noted the Battle of the Atlantic was 'the dominant factor all through the war. Never for one moment could we forget that everything happening elsewhere, on land, at sea, or in the air, depended ultimately on its outcome'. 

In 1939, Britain depended on its North Atlantic shipping routes. It could not survive for long against the superior military and industrial strength of Nazi Germany. It needed essential imports from the United States and Canada. After Pearl Harbor in December 1941, the war became global. American entry into the war proved to be far from helpful to the British position, especially with regard to the control of shipping, imports and troop movements. As 1942 progressed, there was a growing anxiety amongst the British that a shipping crisis was fast approaching and would be severe in the early part of 1943.

Confirmed panelists include:

  • Admiral Sir Jonathon Band GCB ADC DL, formerly First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval Staff, Royal Navy
  • Vice Admiral Sir Anthony Dymock KBE CB, formerly UK Military Representative to NATO and the EU
  • Captain Richard Woodman FRHistS FNI, Elder Brother of Trinity House, UK
  • Dr Malcolm Llewellyn-Jones MBE PhD MA FRHistS FRSA, Historian, Naval Historical Branch, Ministry of Defence, UK

In this discussion, panelists will examine how the Battle of the Atlantic demonstrated the enduring importance of control of the sea to provide a highway for the transport of raw materials, munitions and men, to maintain the nation's security and to project power across the globe. They will also discuss the means by which the shipping crisis of 1942-1943 was overcome to ensure ultimate victory in the Second World War. 

An optional £10 sandwich lunch shall be available from 1215.

This event is open to all RUSI members. To become a member, please click here.

To attend this event, please register online using the "Book your place" button above. If you have any queries please contact Sophie Cordes, Events Assistant, at or call +44 (0)20 7747 4971.

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