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Postby aukepalmhof » Thu Nov 19, 2020 7:45 pm

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2020 black friday (3).jpg
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The Maldives issued in 2020 two miniature sheets for the 75th Anniversary of Operation Black Friday.

February 1945 an Allied force of Bristol Beaufighters suffered many losses in an attack on the German destroyer Z33 and its escort ships. The Allies referred to the operation as "Black Friday". The German ships were in a strong defensive position in the Norwegian fjord and forced the Allied planes to attack under massive anti-aircraft fire.
The Beaufighters and their escort of Mustang Mk III fighters from 65 Squadron RAF were intercepted by twelve Focke-Wulf Fw 190s from Fighter Wing 5 of the Luftwaffe. The Allies damaged at least two of the German ships for the loss of seven Beaufighters who were shot down by anti-aircraft guns. Two Beaufighters and a Mustang were shot down by the Fw 190 and four or five of the German planes were shot down by the Allied planes, including that of the German ace Rudi Linz. The decision to attack Z33 and its escorts, rather than a nearby group of merchant ships, followed instructions from the British Admiralty to the RAF Coastal Command. The losses resulted in merchant ships having priority over destroyers and small warships. Another squadron of P-51 Mustangs was deployed to protect Allied aircraft operating near Norway from German warplanes.

Nazi Germany
Name Z33;
General characteristics (as built): Class and type: Type 1936A (Mob) destroyer. Ordered: 19 September 1939; Builder: AG Weser (Deschimag), Bremen; Yard number: W1003. Laid down: 22 December 1940. Launched: 15 September 1941. Displacement: 2,657 long tons (2,700 t) (standard); 3,691 long tons (3,750 t) (deep load); Length: 127 m (416 ft 8 in) (o/a); Beam: 12 m (39 ft 4 in); Draft: 4.62 m (15 ft 2 in).
Installed power: 70,000 PS (51,000 kW; 69,000 shp); 6 × water-tube boilers. Propulsion: 2 × shafts; 2 × geared steam turbine sets; Speed: 36 knots (67 km/h; 41 mph); Range: 2,950 nmi (5,460 km; 3,390 mi) at 19 knots (35 km/h; 22 mph). Complement: 316–336. Armament: 1 × twin, 3 × single 15 cm (5.9 in) guns; 2 × twin 3.7 cm (1.5 in) AA guns; 2 × quadruple and 2 × single 2 cm (0.8 in) AA guns; 2 × quadruple 53.3 cm (21 in) torpedo tubes; 60 mines; 4 × depth charge launchers. Commissioned: 6 February 1943.
Decommissioned: Late April 1945; Out of service: early April 1945; Captured: 9 May 1945; Fate: Transferred to the Soviet Union, 2 January 1946.

In July 1943 this destroyer joined Z31 in Norway and it was one of the escorting destroyers during the attack on Spitzbergen. As part of the 4th destroyer division, Z33 escorted the battlecruiser SCHARNHORST on its final mission and stayed in Norway until February 1945 where it took part in the sea and air battle in the Fordefjord on 09.02.1945. Send to Narvik for repairs the ship returned to Germany shortly before the capitulation and was decommissioned on 07.05.1945. Added to Soviet Navy lists on 05.11.1945, it was taken over by a Russian crew on 02.01.1946 and arrived at Libau on 17.01. Renamed PROVORNYY on 13.02.1946, the ship was used as a flotilla leader for the North Baltic Fleet. Since it wasn't possible to repair the damaged engine system (port shaft and backward turbines), the ship was sent for repairs to the Rostock Neptun shipyard. On
12.01.1949 it was reclassified as a destroyer and in spring 1950 it was rearmed with Russian anti-aircraft guns. It served until 30.11.1954 when it was reclassified as a training destroyer and on 01.03.1958 the PROVORNYY was disarmed at Leningrad Naval Base, on 03.04 of the same year it was reclassified as floating barrack PKZ-149 to repair and rescue service. On 27.10.1961 it was removed from the navy lists and scrapped after that in 1964.

(Although this edition is authorized by the Maldives postal administration, it was not sold in Maldives, but was only distributed to the novelty trade by the Maldives philatelic agency).

Maldives 2020 MVR20 sgMS?, scott? ( The destroyer on the right top is the Z-31) viewtopic.php?f=2&t=15365&p=20839#p20839
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