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· Registered
746 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi all,
This is a shout out to the America members of the forum.
Since about the start of the year there has systematic striping of the wreck of HMAS PERTH by salvage hunters. Those not familiar with the name PERTH mite know of USS HOUSTON, both ship fought side by side in the Battle of Sunda Strait(between Sumatra & Java). On the night of the 28th February 1942 the two ships come up against three Japanese cruisers & nine destroyers that were escorting part of the Java invasion force. Battle was joined at about 11pm and after an hour of bloodshed both PERTH & HOUSTON had gone down taking about 1,000 men with them.
The link below is news story about the 'salvage'. Since both HOUSTON & PERTH so close to each other both war graves are in danger.
What I was hoping is my America friends, that you could contact your local Congess Man/Woman and or Senator and complain.
Thanks for reading
Also mods if I've posted in the wrong section please move this post.
WWII shipwreck HMAS Perth stripped by bounty hunters off Java - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

· wave man TDY staff
41,730 Posts
I appreciate your posting this, Stu. Those ships were lost in some of the the darkest days of the war, and deserve to be left in peace. I'll contact my reps, but it will be with a rocket up their backsides. Even at that, they'll doubtless shrug it off, as they do everything else. Still, the men of the Perth and the Houston should be represented.


· Proudly Banned by OSS
7,127 Posts
Sounds like a case of bureaucratic incompetence on behalf of both governments, but especially Australia. Let's look at this from a point of legal status here.
The HMAS PERTH (unlike USS HOUSTON) is not legally considered a war grave. That means that those Indonesians can legally continue to pilfer and desecrate the site, regardless of what it represents.
Someone deserves to get sacked for this, but until they try to remedy this through legislative action, it's unfortunately legal.
I'll stress this - if the site of USS HOUSTON gets disturbed, USGOV can prosecute the offenders. The same can't be done for HMAS PERTH... yet.

· Registered
12 Posts
Hi *******,

I complained to my congressman about this and hopefully something can be done to stop this horrific crime. Let us hope that our leaders, both Australian and Americans will get to work and do something about this. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

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