If it only success or failure rather than effort and performance of duty which determines whether a Court Martial occurs, why wasn't Cunningham so arraigned? Half his fleet was disabled or destroyed, Crete was indeed lost and he inflicted negligible damage on the enemy in return. Are you saying he only escaped because he was "a good boy" and threw his ships away against his better judgement? He had constantly been at loggerheads with WSC and the Chiefs of Staff since it was suggested he expend Barham as a blockship at Tripoli. He and Somerville exchanged commiserations about their bad treatment.
The reality is that although there was some heated rhetoric (especially from you know who) Pound knew Leach and Wake-Walker had done a good job in difficult circumstances, whether Bismarck got away or not. That's why he complimented W-W on the evening of the 24th. The Cabinet Meeting and his interim report given on 26th May were not exactly supportive of Leach* but he was so ignorant of the actual circumstances that he didn't even know if Prinz Eugen was in the fight. *IMHO he should have backed his underling to the hilt, until he knew what he was talking about.
By the 19th June he wrote to Cunningham (according to Robin Brodhurst):
"In the battle for the Bismarck we were both lucky and unlucky, and I cannot remember any 48 hours in which I jumped so frequently from great hopes to black despair. It was a sickening moment when it was reported that the Hood had been sunk, and the partially effective Prince of Wales who had barely got through her teething problems was left to deal with Bismarck alone. There is no doubt Hood with her third salvo got two or three hits on Bismarck......."
(I've lost track, and interest, in whether it is currently alleged Pound was deceived by lies and deception from Tovey and below, or whether he was directly involved and deceiving WSC.)
It is interesting that PoW was still not getting credit for the hits when the drafts for the staff appreciation were sent to Tovey after the war in New Zealand. In the National Archives I saw the handwritten air mail letter where Tovey lists several items he thinks should be changed, but emphasises PoW should get credit for the hits. Nowhere does he make any mention of criticism of his, or any of his subordinates' actions.
Please remind yourself, no evidence surfaced that a Court Martial was ever considered until 1961. McMullen's recollection is almost certainly second-hand from Tovey conversations. If Colville as WSC's secretary had heard anything, he would surely included it as a follow up to the "Troubridge" recollection. The Cabinet including WSC was so uninterested they never required a follow up report from Pound "Whether or not she had been right ".
These words are shameful and ignominious for any soldier
are only so if he hears them.
All the best