Hmas melbourne/Voyager CoWision

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MARCH 2014


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HMAS Melbourne/Voyager CoWision: Cause Theories and Inquiries (with aspects of the HMASMelbourne/ USS Frank E Evans collision)

Vernon Parker Oration 2013




Reflections on foil

profession of Naval Engineering

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Saab Systems has been providing high quality products, services and solutions to the Australian and New Zealand Defence Forces for over 25 years. We have been contributing to the defence of the region since the 1930s and continue to win awards for the delivery of military and civil security programs. Building on this reputation the company name has changed to Saab Australia, to reflect our increasingly diversified business that spans the defence, security and traffic management markets and our future product offerings as part of the global Saab group.

Issue 151

Letter to the Editor





Dear Editor,

I was delighted to see my old ship Queenborough in the Visions from the Vault section of the December Headmark having been the navigator during her epic and perilous trip to Europe in 1955.

I must take you to task about the statement that she completed a global circumnavigation as her trips over and back were both via the Suez Canal. In fact, on the return trip and at the request of the Scottish canal pilot, we transited the Great Bitter Lake at 28 knots. I seemed to be the only one on the bridge who had reservations about this procedure

With respect to the kangaroo, it [they] were modeled on the kangaroo on the reverse of the Australian penny and were manufactured onboard by the shipwright. Yours,

John Smith, Senior Researcher Naval Historical Society of Australia Inc

Dear Editor,

I read with fascination the article in the December issue, on the late Admiral Conrad (Emile) Helfrich.

During the 1960s and 1970s, I worked very closely for some years with his son Jan (John) at the Australian HQ in Sydney of the famous Royal Interocean Lines. Jan subsequentlyjoined another company, however we remained in close touch and in 2006, some four years before he passed away, he kindly gifted me a copy of a limited edition of the Familieboek Helfrich Whilst mainly in Dutch, there is a good English summary. Moreover, Jan sent me, among other writings etc., a most splendid photo of his father signing the Japanese Surrender Document onboard Missouri in 1945. General Douglas MacArthur

and, I think, General Wainright (correct spelling?) are standing by.

But the real treasure in Jan's material is an English translation from the Admiral's memoirs, relating to his meeting with General Douglas MacArthur prior to the Signing Ceremony. I quote in full:

General Douglas MacArthur received me in his room. As in my previous meetings with him, he was lively, sharp, trim- looking in his single field- khaki, courteous, obliging and understanding What must have gone through his mind stepping on enemy soil? As in Manila, I congratulated him but somewhat more effusively because this was 'the end'.

"You are the representative for 'Netherlands'?"

"I am sorry Sir, I am the Representative for the Kingdom of the Netherlands?

"I understand. But my instructions from Washington told me that you are a Representative for Netherlands?

" The instructions of the Netherlands Government told me that I had to sign the Surrender as Representative for 'the Kingdom of the Netherlands!'

"After some moments of silence: 'I see the difference. But everything is ready. I'll see what I can do'".

"On the Instrument of Surrender, I have signed as 'Kingdom of the Netherlands representative?

Jan's book expresses some obviously interesting views involving his father's association with the very controversial loss of HMAS Perth and USS Houston. If it would assist further ensuring the accuracy of history, I'd be pleased to loan all the material from Jan, to you or colleagues.

A tale untold until now? Kind regards, Warwick Abadee, Sydney.

HMAS MelbourneA/oyager Collision:
Cause Theories and Inquiries (with
aspects of the HMAS Melboume/USS
Frank E Evans collision) 4

Vernon Parker Oration 2013 21

Fixing Australia's incredible defence policy-Lowy Institute Analysis 30

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