Politicians?politicians had to explain to our government why they had bought this scrap metal shit,
Churchill asked FDR for the ships.
"Early in the war German warships made a number of forays into the shipping lanes, aiming to catch and destroy Allied convoys. These had limited success, and led to the loss of major ships including Graf Spee and Bismarck. From 1940 onwards, the German navy focused on escalating the U-boat war. Attacking on the surface at night (where they could not be detected by Allied sonar, or ASDIC), U-boats had great success against Allied convoys, sinking merchant ships with torpedoes and then submerging to evade the counterattack by escorting warships. They were also benefitting from decoded communications of the British Admiralty. In 1941 they inflicted huge losses, sinking 875 Allied ships.
During 1941, tactical advantage began to shift towards the British. They had received 50 American destroyers in exchange for US access to British bases. "