Saturday, 8 July 2017

The naval defence of the Dutch East Indies according to the Dutch newspaper Het nieuws van den dag voor Nederlandsch-Indië dated 4 July 1913

Hr. Ms. Java

Hr.Ms. Sumatra

An item referred to the report of the Nederlandsche Staatscommissie voor de verdediging van Nederlandsch-Indië [Dutch commission for defence of the Dutch East Indies] which proposed the building of a fleet financed by the Netherlands and the Dutch East Indies. It included nine dreadnoughts of which 5 continuously served in the Dutch East Indies.(1) The dreadnoughts were to be supported by a large number of destroyers, torpedo boats and submarines. Tandjong-Priok was to become the major naval base where three basins for the warships were to be constructed. There were to be founded some minor bases on the archipelago including large storages for fuel and victuals. The ships were to be oil fuelled. The whole project was to be realized within the next 35 years with annual costs 45½ million Dutch guilders..

1. The outbreak of the First World War in 1914 prevented that the dreadnoughts were built. Instead were the Hr. Ms. Java (1916-1942) and Sumatra (1916-1944), both of the Java-class light cruisers.. The third somewhat larger cruiser Hr. Ms. Celebes was never completed.