Naval War College Review


Kieth W. Bird


In 1919, Grossadmiral von Tirpitz lamented the "tragic fate" of Germany's attempt to become a seapower with the words: the German people do not understand the sea. "1 Tirpitz, however, remained confident that a "thorough and fair history" would vindicate the creation of the Imperial Navy's High Seas Fleet. 2 In the years that followed, the policies of Tirpitz and the Imperial Navy's role in World War I were vigorously defended by a coalition of retired and active naval officers, historians and civilian supporters.