Reply To: Clearing the World War One minefields – A big job for the sweepers
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Thankyou Frank for the link to the latest publications on the subject. By all accounts the clear up operation was well organised. I would suggest that the mine was probably the most effective weapon in the naval war in its successful destruction of warships and merchant ships on both sides and nearly bringing industry and the civilian populations to their knees.
I recall Admiral “Jacky” Fisher, newly appointed as First Lord of the Admiralty in 1904, saying that the three things that concerned him most about a future conflict were the mine, the torpedo and the aeroplane. Seems he was right but still the navies developed big gun ships which only met unsuccessfully once as battle fleets. Development of mines and their counter measures, submarines and their detection and ship borne aircraft were secondary to the battleship and battlecruiser. Both sides paid heavily for that.