Career (Soviet Union)
Name: ShCh-213
Builder: 61 Kommunara (Nikolajev, U.S.S.R.) / Yard 200
Laid down: 4 December 1934
Launched: 13 April 1937
Commissioned: 31 October 1938
Decommissioned: 14 October 1942
Out of service: 14 October 1942
Fate: Sank
General characteristics
Class and type: Shchuka-class submarine

SC-213 (formerly ShCh-213) was a Soviet Shchuka-class submarine best known for torpedoing the Struma, a Holocaust refugee ship carrying 769[1] Jews fleeing Romania for Palestine on February 24, 1942. All but one refugee drowned. The SC-213 was lost in the Black Sea in October 1942 with all hands aboard.


[hide] *1 Struma sinking

[edit] Struma sinkingEdit

The Struma was a Bulgarian ship sailing under the Panamanian flag commissioned by Zionist organizations in Romania to carry Romanian Jews to Palestine. En route, the ship’s engines gave out and a Turkish military tugboat towed it to Istanbul harbor. There, the Struma sat under police surveillance and languished in the harbor for 71 days, its passengers prevented from going ashore by the Turkish police.[2] The only food the passengers were able to get was that brought aboard by a Turkish Jew named Simon Brod, working with the Red Crescent and other Jews of Istanbul. Finally, in late February 1942, after negotiations with the British regarding the fate of the passengers seemed to reach an impasse, Turkish authorities boarded the Struma, cut its anchor chain and towed the hapless vessel, without a working engine, radio or anchor, and without adequate food or provisions, back into the Black Sea, and cast her adrift.[2] The next morning, SC-213 fired a single torpedo at the Struma, which sank a short while later. David Stoliar, a 19-year-old native of Bessarabia, clung to the wreckage and was eventually picked up by a rescue ship, the lone survivor.[2] Initially, it was believed the ship was sunk by a stray mine, but in the 1960s it was revealed that SC-213 was acting under secret orders to sink all neutral and enemy shipping entering the Black Sea, to reduce the flow of strategic materials to Nazi Germany. A day prior to sinking the Struma, SC-213 had sunk the Turkish sailing vessel Çankaya with gunfire west-north-west of the Bosporus.[3]

[edit] Sinking of SC-213Edit

The SC-213 was sunk on October 14, 1942, when it hit a Romanian mine in the Black Sea. There was conjecture for many years that SC-213 had been sunk by a German "submarine chaser".[3]

[edit] Discovery of wreckageEdit

On 15 November 2008 the submarine was discovered 12 miles off the coast from Constanta by divers (2 Romanian and 1 Dutch) from Aquarius dive center and the identification of the SC-213 is announced on 23 August 2010 to the Romanian authorities and representatives of the Russian Federation in Romania.[4]

[edit] ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Doomed From the Start, Naval History, February 2004
  2. ^ a b c "Notorious World War II sub discovered", The Cotton Boll Conspiracy, 09/27/2010
  3. ^ a b, ShCh-213
  4. ^ Betasom, Il Relitto Del Sch 213 Identificato Nel Mar Nero, Sept. 13, 2010
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