HMAS Sydney’s hunt for the German raider, Emden.
In the opening months of the First World War, Emden’s trail of destruction was tremendous. This one small ship and her skilled and gallant captain wrought havoc on the maritime trade of the British Empire, capturing and sinking ships at will.
Australia, sending wool, wheat and gold across the Indian Ocean to sustain the Mother Country and despatching tens of thousands of young men to join the fight, had a vital interest in bringing Emden to her end. The battle, when it came, was short and bloody, an emphatic First Victory at sea for the newborn Royal Australian Navy. It remains to this day a celebrated epic of naval warfare.
In the century since, many writers have been there before Mike Carlton. Most were German, some of them survivors of the battle, others later historians, and they have generally told the story well. British accounts vary in quality, from good to nonsense, and there have been some patchwork American attempts as well. Curiously, there has been very little written from an Australian point of view. This book is – in part – an attempt to remedy that, with new facts and perspectives brought into the light of day.