Movies and Films  
This is the forum for Movie and Film discussions. Again, our topic is naval warfare in WWII for the most part. 
Re: U-156 & Red Cross
Posted by: Mark E. Horan ()
Date: January 15, 2006 01:41AM


I think what Hartenstein did was truely chivalrous. I think the American decision to have the Liberator bomb his submarine, while militarily correct, was a poor decision. However, the reason is in no way connected to the Red Cross Hartenstein flew as a sign of intent, not fact, but rather the life-boats being towed and the number of survivors on deck combined with the admitted lack of the boat taking any defensive actions. None the less, the bombing could IN NO WAY be considered a war crime - and your cavalier use of that phrase is reprehensible. The Red Cross need only be be recognized on officially registered, unarmed, hospital ships. Arbitrarily electing to fly, carry, or display one on a WARSHIP and expecting it to carry any weight is ridiculous in the extreme, both legally and in terms of common sense. If HMS Glorious had elected to fly a Red Cross flag on 8 June 1940, would it have been a WAR CRIME for Scharnhorst and Gneisenau to open fire - I think not.

Your efforts to produce help the production of a movie about a great man that, for whatever reason, attempted to perform an extremely humanitarian act in an otherwise horrendous war, is commendable ONLY if it is intended to represent the actions of BOTH sides accurately and fairly. The use of the words WAR CRIME in relationship to either side involved in this incident is totally incompatable with fairness - the more so since the pilot of the aircraft in question was (and may still be) alive and has publicly and plainly spoken about the event.

Mark E. Horan

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