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Subject: Naval Wargraves Sold as Scrap rss

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Harmonica
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Remarkable news from the NL. Three major Dutch warships in Indonesian waters have disappeared from the seabed. A war grave for 915 sailors. It is expected that they were illegally lifted and sold for scrap.



In february 1942 the Japanese tried to invade the island of Java, then part of the Dutch East Indies. An allied force tried to counter them, resulting in the Battle of the Java Sea.

Two years ago Indonesian divers said the wrecks of the cruisers De Ruyter and Java and the destroyer Kortenaer were still there. Now they are gone, leaving only their marks in the seabed. What has happenen is subject of investigation, but it looks that they are illegally lifted as scrap, transported in barges to the port of Surabaya and sold as scrap.

During the same battle or better the next day British cruisers Exeter and destroyer Encounter were sunk too. Their current fate is unknown, but if they have been sold for scrap too, I expect some rumor. I believe that naval war graves are protected by international law. Indonesian authorities have something to explain.

The pacific is littered with shipwrecks from the Second World War. Mainly Japanese. But I recollect two battleships in the Malaysian Gulf, American wrecks near Guadalcanal, Leyte Gulf and many other places.

Are similar illegal salvages know? And how have been dealt with them?
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That's awful news. Unfortunately, the Pacific can be a very difficult place to protect these wrecks and too many humans are simply disgusting lowlifes and so have no qualms with graverobbing.
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That must have been no small operation. A year or so ago I read "Shadow Divers," a nonfiction about divers investigating a sunken U-Boat, and that book was adamant that when dead sailors are present, there are a lot of legalities involved.

Then again, when money is just sitting on the bottom of the ocean...it's sad but not surprising that eventually somebody comes along and takes it.
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http://nltimes.nl/2016/11/16/missing-dutch-warships-maybe-so...
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I'll admit, I'm no expert on maritime and salvage laws. I was under the impression, though, that salvaging on open waters was fair game? Is it the presence of dead sailors that change things? What jurisdiction would it fall under?

Not condoning the actions, more just trying to better understand the relevant law for curiosity sake
 
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sigmazero13 wrote:
I'll admit, I'm no expert on maritime and salvage laws. I was under the impression, though, that salvaging on open waters was fair game? Is it the presence of dead sailors that change things? What jurisdiction would it fall under?

Not condoning the actions, more just trying to better understand the relevant law for curiosity sake


Hey, something I actually know a little about being a ex-naval salvage diver! Warships are covered under international law as sovereign wrecks and retain rights to them in perpetuity.
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MWChapel wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:
I'll admit, I'm no expert on maritime and salvage laws. I was under the impression, though, that salvaging on open waters was fair game? Is it the presence of dead sailors that change things? What jurisdiction would it fall under?

Not condoning the actions, more just trying to better understand the relevant law for curiosity sake


Hey, something I actually know a little about being a ex-naval salvage diver! Warships are covered under international law as sovereign wrecks and retain rights to them in perpetuity.

Ah, ok, that makes sense. Thanks!

If the salvagers got caught, who would prosecute? The country who owns the wreck, I presume? I'm assuming there would have to be some extradition involved.
 
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sigmazero13 wrote:
MWChapel wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:
I'll admit, I'm no expert on maritime and salvage laws. I was under the impression, though, that salvaging on open waters was fair game? Is it the presence of dead sailors that change things? What jurisdiction would it fall under?

Not condoning the actions, more just trying to better understand the relevant law for curiosity sake


Hey, something I actually know a little about being a ex-naval salvage diver! Warships are covered under international law as sovereign wrecks and retain rights to them in perpetuity.

Ah, ok, that makes sense. Thanks!

If the salvagers got caught, who would prosecute? The country who owns the wreck, I presume? I'm assuming there would have to be some extradition involved.


Of course not all countries adhere to these international laws, and if the salvagers got permission from the state players, who knows. It doesn't sound like U.S. waters or any of those countries who protect them with ACTS.

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fightcitymayor wrote:

The destroyer seen on the photo of the article was named De Ruyter till the early 30s and then renamed Van Ghent, because the then new built cruiser - that is now scrapped - got the name.
 
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I am all about honoring fallen sailors but I can't see the big deal about taking a sunken boat in the middle of the ocean that no one visits. If it was some sort of monument or park that people visit that would be crap but I dunno, just seems like recycling.
 
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galad2003 wrote:
I am all about honoring fallen sailors but I can't see the big deal about taking a sunken boat in the middle of the ocean that no one visits. If it was some sort of monument or park that people visit that would be crap but I dunno, just seems like recycling.


Because scrap metal salvaged from grave sites is how you get haunted appliances.

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galad2003 wrote:
I am all about honoring fallen sailors but I can't see the big deal about taking a sunken boat in the middle of the ocean that no one visits. If it was some sort of monument or park that people visit that would be crap but I dunno, just seems like recycling.


The thing is that they aren't just "Boats sitting in the middle of the ocean" they are essentially the tombs for the sailors still onboard. If the country of register for the ship decides to remove all the bodies and return them to the families, then salvage the ship, no big deal. But if you have a loved one who is enshrined in their lost ship, and then the ship and their remains go missing, you can probably see how that would make people upset. Kind of like if someone digs up your relative, disposes of the body, and resells the casket. Just not cool.
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Particularly interesting because of the relationship between the dutch and the indonesians both prior to and after the war.

While things have simmered down over the years, them being dutch ships probably didn't exactly help if the scrappers did have any ethical concerns in the first place.
 
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Harmonica
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casualcasual wrote:
Particularly interesting because of the relationship between the dutch and the indonesians both prior to and after the war.

While things have simmered down over the years, them being dutch ships probably didn't exactly help if the scrappers did have any ethical concerns in the first place.

No, I don't believe the Dutch-Indonesian relation has got anything to do with it. It's more due to the general attitude of scrappers, for whom money comes first. Over the years in the NL statues and bronze plaquetes disappeared. If they are found, it is usually on a scrapyard. Mostly heavily damaged.

On the frontpage: It seems dat HMS Exeter and HMS Encounter has disappeared along with American submarine Perch. HMS Electra has been partly gone.

I am curious to learn what is going to happen. And how Indonesian justice is going to act.
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anemaat wrote:
casualcasual wrote:
Particularly interesting because of the relationship between the dutch and the indonesians both prior to and after the war.

While things have simmered down over the years, them being dutch ships probably didn't exactly help if the scrappers did have any ethical concerns in the first place.

No, I don't believe the Dutch-Indonesian relation has got anything to do with it. It's more due to the general attitude of scrappers, for whom money comes first. Over the years in the NL statues and bronze plaquetes disappeared. If they are found, it is usually on a scrapyard. Mostly heavily damaged.

On the frontpage: It seems dat HMS Exeter and HMS Encounter has disappeared along with American submarine Perch. HMS Electra has been partly gone.


Yep I was just going to post about that.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/nov/16/british-second...

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anemaat wrote:
casualcasual wrote:
Particularly interesting because of the relationship between the dutch and the indonesians both prior to and after the war.

While things have simmered down over the years, them being dutch ships probably didn't exactly help if the scrappers did have any ethical concerns in the first place.

No, I don't believe the Dutch-Indonesian relation has got anything to do with it. It's more due to the general attitude of scrappers, for whom money comes first. Over the years in the NL statues and bronze plaquetes disappeared. If they are found, it is usually on a scrapyard. Mostly heavily damaged.

On the frontpage: It seems dat HMS Exeter and HMS Encounter has disappeared along with American submarine Perch. HMS Electra has been partly gone.

I am curious to learn what is going to happen. And how Indonesian justice is going to act.


Yes I probably overstated it a bit there. Scrappers wouldn't care regardless. What I meant was i find it interesting given the history. Surabaya was a fairly important spot in terms of the independence movement and the collaboration with the Japanese.

The Indonesian justice system is an interesting beast. It will depend a fair bit on the politics at play. Have any governments expressed concerns?
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article about the missing ships on the BBC
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-37997640

UK at least classifies it as desecration of war graves mb
 
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andyl wrote:
anemaat wrote:
casualcasual wrote:
Particularly interesting because of the relationship between the dutch and the indonesians both prior to and after the war.

While things have simmered down over the years, them being dutch ships probably didn't exactly help if the scrappers did have any ethical concerns in the first place.

No, I don't believe the Dutch-Indonesian relation has got anything to do with it. It's more due to the general attitude of scrappers, for whom money comes first. Over the years in the NL statues and bronze plaquetes disappeared. If they are found, it is usually on a scrapyard. Mostly heavily damaged.

On the frontpage: It seems dat HMS Exeter and HMS Encounter has disappeared along with American submarine Perch. HMS Electra has been partly gone.


Yep I was just going to post about that.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/nov/16/british-second...



And this answers my question - thanks!
 
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exparrot wrote:
article about the missing ships on the BBC
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-37997640

UK at least classifies it as desecration of war graves mb


Except it doesn't.
Quote:
The war graves commission said on Wednesday that the wrecks were not formally designated as war graves.


The quote "The desecration of a war grave is a serious offence" came from the Dutch defence ministry.
 
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and the reason is that the wrecks were only recently located.
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