Neither Sharks Nor Wolves

The Men of Nazi Germany's U-Boat Arm 1939-1945
If you are a member, log in to receive member pricing
Published:August 15, 2011
By Timothy Mulligan (Author)

Although countless books have been written about the U-boat war in the Atlantic, precious few facts have come to light about the men who served in the submarines that wrought such havoc on Allied ships. Eager to get beyond the stereotypes perpetuated in movies and novels and find out who these elusive sailors really were, archivist Timothy Mulligan started searching official records. Eventually he went straight to the source, conducting a survey of more than a thousand U-boat officers and enlisted men and interviewing a number of them personally. The result is this character study of the German submarine force that challenges traditional and revisionist views of the service. Mulligan found striking similarities in the men's geographic and social origins, education, and previous occupations, particularly within the specialized engineering and radio branches of the submarine force. The information he gathered establishes quantifiable patterns in age, length of service, and experience, as well as the organization's overall recruitment policies and training standards. The numbers and losses of U-boat personnel are also fully examined. Beyond these objective characteristics, this study lists such subjective factors as morale, treatment of enemy ship survivors, and the relationship of the submariners to the Nazi regime, and it confirms a serious crisis in morale in late 1943. The roles played by the head of the U-boat arm, Grand Admiral Karl Donitz, and its organizational chief, Admiral Hans-Georg von Friedeburg, are thoroughly addressed. Mulligan concludes that the U-boat arm quickly evolved from a handpicked elite to a more representative sample of the German navy at large but continued to be treated as an elite force. The only comprehensive investigation yet published, this book also draws on POW interrogations of U-boat survivors and documentation of Kriegsmarine personnel policy obtained from German archives.

List Price: $22.95
Clear The Decks Price*:$22.95
Member Price: $4.59
Product Details
  • Subject: World War II
  • Paperback : 384 pages
  • Publisher: Naval Institute Press (August 15, 2011)
  • ISBN-10: 1591145465
  • ISBN-13: 9781591145462
  • Product Dimensions: 6 X 9 in
  • Shipping Weight: 0

Timothy P. Mulligan was an archivist at the National Archives in Washington, D.C., specializing in captured German and World War II era U.S. military and naval records. He lives in Lanham, MD and is also the author of Lone Wolf: The Life and Death of U-Boat Ace Werner Henke.

More by this Author

Neither Sharks Nor Wolves
Although countless books have been written about the U-boat war in the Atlantic, precious few facts...Read More

Related Content

None found for this author.

Events and Conferences

None found for this author.

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Reviews


Conferences and Events

2016 Coast Guard Academy Conference

Mon, 2016-10-24

US Coast Guard Academy

As part of The U.S. Coast Guard Academy 2016-2017 Leadership Lecture Series The U.S. Naval Institute presents Historical and...

Maritime Security Dialogue

Defense Forum Washington 2016

View All

From the Press

Guest Lecturer & Book Signing

Sun, 2016-10-30

Book Launch Party

Wed, 2016-11-02

Why Become a Member of the U.S. Naval Institute?

As an independent forum for over 135 years, the Naval Institute has been nurturing creative thinkers who responsibly raise their voices on matters relating to national defense.

Become a Member Renew Membership