BENEATH THE SOUTHERN CROSS War in the South Atlantic Release Date: January 11, 1953 ... (Episode #10) The Battle of the South Atlantic is the main theme of this show. The German pocket battleship Graf Spree starts it out by sinking thousands of tons of merchant ships, both neutral and of ally descent until the three British cruisers led by Devonshire forced the battleship into port at Uruguay. The Graf Spree decided to escape by scuttling itself. The German raider Atlantis also wrecked havoc in the southern seas, but met a different death as it was simply blasted out of existence. Brazil joined in the side of the Allies and together with the United States formed convoys to help supply the Allies efforts in Africa to defeat the Axis. With control of the South Atlantic, Allied shipping almost always made it through in the fight for victory.