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Re: Don't take Edwards' account at face value either

February 24 2014 at 6:25 PM
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Jan Visser  (no login)


Response to Don't take Edwards' account at face value either

 

There is another source that might warrant attention.

I just checked the official statement by L. Meijer. It does not mention the overflight of airplanes at all. Second, it does not mention the name of the destroyer (DD) either (not the one that executed the massacro nor the one that picked Meijer up eventually.

I checked a number of my secondary sources, and the description of Meijer's events is mostly derived from his statement (drawn up in October,1945), or a book called "Varen in Oorlogstijd' by S.J. Graaf van Limburg Stirum, published in 1948. The book was based on desk research, but also new interviews with World War II survivors, and it contains much more details than the original statement of Meijer has. Presumably, Meijer recounted his experiences to the author including new details.

"Varen in Oorlogstijd" mentions that "after lunch" (presumably 12 or 12.30), several Japanese bombers and waterplanes were sighted, flying on a southern course. They left the Augustina alone. Shortly after, the Augustina sighed the sprays of water of exploding bombs on the horizon. After about 30 minutes, the aircraft returned and again the bombers took no notice of Augustina. The waterplanes however approached the ship directly and followed every manoeuvre of the ship, but didn't drop any bombs nor did they machinegun the ship. Shortly after, a plume of smoke was sighted in the Northeast and a Japanese destroyer approached at full speed.

The odd thing is, is that "Varen in Oorlogstijd" mentions that the lifeboats cast off from the ship at 3 PM, whereas Meijer in his earlier statement said that the Japanese "destroyer" was not sighted until 4 PM.

Perhaps of interest is that the second destroyer "transferred Meijer to another naval vessel, where he found the crew of USS Pope, and was brought ashore on March 7 at Makassar.

Regards,
Jan

 
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  • Re: Don't take Edwards' account at face value either - Jan Visser on Feb 25, 2014, 10:29 PM
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