The Royal Canadian Navy expanded from a regular force of 3,000 men in 1939 to the world’s third largest navy by 1945. It played a significant part in the Atlantic and contributed substantially in other theatres. This was a sizeable achievement for a vast country with a small population, many of whom had never seen the sea, and a very modest shipbuilding and industrial resource. The Royal Canadian Navy deserves to be an equal element in this volume.
In many ways, the tide in the war at sea had turned decisively in the Allies’ favour by October 1943, when this volume begins with Admiral of the Fleet Sir Andrew Cunningham assumption of the post of First Sea Lord. Major maritime issues had to be faced, however: the threat of advanced U-boats, the landing and supply of large armies in Italy, Normandy and Southern France, and the defeat of Japanese armed might, in which the British Pacific Fleet played a part. The Allies were engaged, too, in discussions about the post-war treatment of the defeated enemies, and the relations between the Western Allies and the Soviet Union.
This volume is the fifth in a series of which volumes I (1917-1919) and II (1919-1939) have been published. Robin Brodhurst is editing volumes III (1939-1941) and IV (1941-1943). It draws on primary sources, both personal papers and official materials, from British, American and Canadian collections.
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