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It was something new in the memory of man when the Japanese
Sea Eagles torpedoed the mighty dreadnoughts Prince of Wales
and Repulse, much vaunted as unsinkable, and sent them to the
bottom of the South China Sea. It was the same at the Pearl
Harbour. This episode we will investigate the story of these
two once great warship and uncover the event of the fateful
day that leads to their sinking both above and beneath the watery
Sinking the Unsinkable
The HMS Repulse
||HMS Repulse, a 26,500-ton
Renown class battlecruiser, was built at Clydebank, Scotland
in 1916. In 1933-36, Repulse was modernized, emerging
with improved deck armor, a hangar and catapult for aircraft,
and a greatly increased anti-aircraft gun battery.
She operated with the Home Fleet in the North Sea and
Atlantic during the first two years of the Second World
War, taking part in the pursuit of the German battleship
Bismarck in May 1941.
Later in the year she was sent to the Far East, accompanying
the new battleship Prince of Wales. The two ships arrived
at Singapore just before Japan began the Pacific War. As soon
as hostilities commenced, both steamed northwards to intercept
a reported invasion force. While returning to Singapore on
10 December 1941, Repulse and Prince of Wales were attacked
by Japanese high-level bombers and torpedo planes.
Repulse was moderately damaged by bombs early in the action
and was later hit by several torpedoes. After receiving this
heavy underwater damage, she sank rapidly, followed less than
an hour later by the Prince of Wales.