First Person

Dönitz in Queensland

In the early 1930s, Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini sent two warships on a world cruise to enhance their status as world leaders. Eventually the two light cruisers arrived at Cairns, where crowds flocked to see them. It had not been an uneventful voyage, as at one point the Emden broke down, and much to the delight of Il Duce, and the chagrin of the Führer, the Armando Diaz had to tow its German ally part of the way. Everyone admired the svelte lines of the streamlined Italian ship. Indeed when she was launched in Venice, record crowds flocked to…

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