De Ruyter, Java missing, Kortenaer partly so

De Ruyter, Java missing, Kortenaer partly so

Felix
Felix

November 15th, 2016, 2:05 pm #1


Two Dutch war wrecks off the coast of Indonesia seem to have disappeared. A third wreck seems to be lacking in large part, Minister Hennis wrote to the House. Divers were searching for wrecks found traces and sonar recordings show the imprint of ships previously on the sea floor.

It concerns HNLMS De Ruyter, HNLMS Java and HNLMS Kortenaer. The ships sunk during the Battle of the Java Sea in 1942. The battle sent 915 Dutch sailors, including Rear-Admiral Karel Doorman, and 259 crew members of Indonesian origin to a watery grave.

In 2002, amateur divers found the wrecks. However, an international team of divers now finds that they are missing.

Desecration
The three Dutch ships were sunk in 1942 at an engagement with the Japanese fleet. Hennis reports that she is very concerned about the disappearance.

"The Battle of the Java Sea is part of our collective memory. The wrecks are silent witnesses of this tragic event and set the stage for the many stories about the horrors of war, but also the camaraderie between people on board."

According to the government, there is still insufficient information to determine the circumstances of the disappearance. It wants to investigate it, along with other countries. Hennis already stressed, however, that desecration is a serious offense.

Expedition
The disappearance of the wrecks came to light during an expedition which was put in motion by the Karel Doorman Fund. That would, in view of the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Java Sea on February 27, 2017, diving to the wrecks in order to establish the locations for the relatives. Nor could thus be emphasized the status of war grave.



My excuses for the poor translation but google, like their political opinions, is not very accurate with translations from Dutch
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Joined: December 23rd, 2007, 11:46 am

November 15th, 2016, 3:23 pm #2

The translation is accurate enough, Felix.

It's unbelievable that this happened ... apart from the complete lack of moral sense by those involved, how do your remove the wrecks of 2 light cruisers from the sea floor and transport it somewhere without anyone noticing?

Jan
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Kevin D
Kevin D

November 15th, 2016, 4:06 pm #3

Two Dutch war wrecks off the coast of Indonesia seem to have disappeared. A third wreck seems to be lacking in large part, Minister Hennis wrote to the House. Divers were searching for wrecks found traces and sonar recordings show the imprint of ships previously on the sea floor.

It concerns HNLMS De Ruyter, HNLMS Java and HNLMS Kortenaer. The ships sunk during the Battle of the Java Sea in 1942. The battle sent 915 Dutch sailors, including Rear-Admiral Karel Doorman, and 259 crew members of Indonesian origin to a watery grave.

In 2002, amateur divers found the wrecks. However, an international team of divers now finds that they are missing.

Desecration
The three Dutch ships were sunk in 1942 at an engagement with the Japanese fleet. Hennis reports that she is very concerned about the disappearance.

"The Battle of the Java Sea is part of our collective memory. The wrecks are silent witnesses of this tragic event and set the stage for the many stories about the horrors of war, but also the camaraderie between people on board."

According to the government, there is still insufficient information to determine the circumstances of the disappearance. It wants to investigate it, along with other countries. Hennis already stressed, however, that desecration is a serious offense.

Expedition
The disappearance of the wrecks came to light during an expedition which was put in motion by the Karel Doorman Fund. That would, in view of the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Java Sea on February 27, 2017, diving to the wrecks in order to establish the locations for the relatives. Nor could thus be emphasized the status of war grave.



My excuses for the poor translation but google, like their political opinions, is not very accurate with translations from Dutch
With all due respect and no offense whatsoever to you Felix I find this story as reported impossible to believe!

http://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2 ... in-region/

And the key to my disbelief can be found in the following excerpted wording;
“……However, the two cruisers have vanished, as has part of the destroyer, the minister told MPs on Tuesday. The discovery of the illegal salvage was made by divers during preparations for next year’s 75 year anniversary commemorations. ……….The divers found traces of where the ships had been using underwater photography and sonar.”

If they had said they found evidence of salvage on the cruisers, or just the remains of heavily salvaged wrecks, I could accept that, but completely 'vanished' and just traces of where they had been, well pardon my French and excuse me but I am calling bullshit to that. I have seen first hand many heavily salvaged wrecks and none of them simply 'vanished'.

Of course maybe the newspapers just cocked up (no surprise there) what the divers actually reported, or maybe the divers simply looked in the wrong place.

Hopefully more info will surface (no pun intended) in next few days, and maybe even the names of the divers so more could be verified.
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Felix
Felix

November 15th, 2016, 4:30 pm #4

The translation is accurate enough, Felix.

It's unbelievable that this happened ... apart from the complete lack of moral sense by those involved, how do your remove the wrecks of 2 light cruisers from the sea floor and transport it somewhere without anyone noticing?

Jan
Well, you would need a lot of equipment, that is certain.

I was involved with a number of salvage activities during my sailing days. Those jobs were well planned and took a lot of equipment. I did a big job off Sinkep in 2000, but that one was is shallow water. We did use some local talent in addition to our equipment.

While steel scrap salvagers are not uncommon, as is evident on the wreck of USS Houston and Perth, It needs a massive undertaking, financially, to make these ships disappear completely. There are several ways doing it, and all need crane vessels/barges, pontoon barges, etc. To do it cleanly at that depth it has to be industrial, not piecemeal

Maybe those nice, new Indonesian domestically built navy ships ...... Sorry, couldn't resist.




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Felix
Felix

November 15th, 2016, 4:37 pm #5

With all due respect and no offense whatsoever to you Felix I find this story as reported impossible to believe!

http://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2 ... in-region/

And the key to my disbelief can be found in the following excerpted wording;
“……However, the two cruisers have vanished, as has part of the destroyer, the minister told MPs on Tuesday. The discovery of the illegal salvage was made by divers during preparations for next year’s 75 year anniversary commemorations. ……….The divers found traces of where the ships had been using underwater photography and sonar.”

If they had said they found evidence of salvage on the cruisers, or just the remains of heavily salvaged wrecks, I could accept that, but completely 'vanished' and just traces of where they had been, well pardon my French and excuse me but I am calling bullshit to that. I have seen first hand many heavily salvaged wrecks and none of them simply 'vanished'.

Of course maybe the newspapers just cocked up (no surprise there) what the divers actually reported, or maybe the divers simply looked in the wrong place.

Hopefully more info will surface (no pun intended) in next few days, and maybe even the names of the divers so more could be verified.
The only thing is that the DoD released an official statement. Granted, the minister is a twit, and knows absolutely zero about ships and shipping, the message has to have been vetted by people who do, and may have more evidence?

As for positioning? The navy has known the exact position of the wrecks well before you guys found them. We dropped wreaths there during the Fairwinds cruise, which was before the days of GPS.

Im not certain when they last sent divers down there, but I believe there was an expedition of some sorts a few years ago.
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Kevin D
Kevin D

November 15th, 2016, 4:47 pm #6

....................that is he exact position of the wrecks was not known before we discovered them.

What was thought to be the positions was known but it is incorrect, as are ALL published positions I am aware of to this day.

And while I cant say it didn't happen, I have never heard or seen published anywhere that Navy divers have been on the wrecks at any time.

I'll gladly stand corrected if you can provide any proof of your statements though.




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Felix
Felix

November 15th, 2016, 6:12 pm #7

That's harder, but the logbooks of Van SPEIJK should be in the archive.

During the delivery voyage of the first Leander to Indonesia we sailed to a specific coordinate and had a wreath and church ceremonies. Every fairwind delivery did that. This was well before gps, but there was a navy audiovisual team on board. It's probably in marine blad.

It was my understanding that the published coordinates were conceiled on purpose. This probably also covered in marineblad. To prevent divers on the wrecks.

What is certain that, when they found the missing subs, they too refused to release those.
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Kevin D
Kevin D

November 16th, 2016, 6:29 pm #8

And not just the Dutch cruisers salvaged but according to latest reports Exeter, Electra, Encounter and Perch also! https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/ ... g-java-sea)

The below is a 3D scan showing where Exeter once was. And I can certainly vouch for the image location accuracy! Just as they said about the Dutch wrecks, vanished! Simply mind boggling! If I hadn't seen this with my own eyes and heard directly from someone involved in the discovery of the missing Dutch wrecks I just would not have believed it.

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Felix
Felix

November 17th, 2016, 6:40 pm #9


With than many ships of those sizes missing from the seabed, we are dealing with an industrial effort, most certainly sanctioned by the Indonesian government.

The salvage of any given wreck, including site surveys, diving surveys, mobilization of equipment, operations would be weeks on any given wreck at those depths.
This was no barge with grab operation. Currently, i'm sideways involved with the scrapping of some Navy vessels in Nova Scotia, and while that is controlled and on land, it is still a many months long operation.

Also, to sail the wreckage through any of the straights around Celebes and Borneo without observation is impossible.

Indonesia never ratified any conventions as responsible countries do to protect underwater war graves or cultural property. They clearly stating not to feel responsible for the loss of any of these ships. Regardless of whether they did or did not know or benefited from it, the violation of a war grave is a crime, and not knowing what happens in your territorial waters under international maritime law is negligence. Negligence can be prosecuted.

Certainly, these blow hearts responding in media feel that poor countries have all kinds of rights and given the value of the steels, etc. These were no poor fishermen, they don't have that equipment.

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KevinD
KevinD

November 17th, 2016, 7:34 pm #10

................./ much more basic than you may think, especially compared to 'first' world standards and have been ongoing now in Asian waters at this lever for several years now.

Below is the barge with parts of Hr. Ms.0-16 (top tow images) and HIJMS Kuma (bottom) on-board. The same vessel also salvaged HIJMS Haguro which lays at approximately the same depths as did Java and De Ruyter. So pretty much a blow and grab operation.

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