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Searchers may have found WWII "Giant" wreckage in Mediterranean


A team of Italians searching for World War II planes and boats sunken off of Sardinia's coast may have found a mostly intact Messerschmitt Me-323 "Giant." There are no surviving examples of the hulking 6-engine plane, which transported tanks and other heavily equipment to German battle fronts in North Africa and the Mediterranean in World War II. The plane had a 180-foot wingspan and a cruise speed of only about 120 knots, making it an easy target for Allied fighter planes. The wreckage was found in about 200 feet of water, 8 miles off the coast of Sardinia, roughly consistent with the location of an Me-323 shot down by a British long-range fighter in July 1943. Searchers said the plane is largely intact, including its engines, fuselage and wings. If correct, the find would make it the only surviving Me-323.