Solving the mystery of the Montevideo Maro, sunk by the United States in 1942 with 1,000 Allied soldiers on board –

Solving the mystery of the Montevideo Maro, sunk by the United States in 1942 with 1,000 Allied soldiers on board –

there Montevideo Maru Located in 4 thousand meters deepNorthwest Luzon. in Philippines. Expedition designed to investigate find The tragedy of World War II. the Japanese cargo ship It is located at the bottom of the South China SeaThe summer of 1942 when more than a thousand Allied prisoners, most of them Australians, fell on boardand civilians. Everyone died in the disaster. The merchant ship was sunk by an American submarine His commander was not aware of the presence of the soldiers.

The story begins again from Rabaul, New Guinea, where the ship, having loaded its human cargo, set sail. In the direction of Hainan, a Chinese town occupied by the Army of the Rising Sun. Advancing at 17 knots, she should take care to meet her escort, the destroyer. On the night of July 1, her speed slowed, increased to 12 knots, and, possibly, waiting, this opens a window for attack by the Sturgeon, the US Navy “shark”, engaged in the search for enemy ships. Captain Wright notes the zigzag movements of the target in the “Diary”, approaches using speed reduction, and then at 2.25 orders four torpedoes to be fired., necessary – at his discretion – to neutralize an important target. mission successful, The Montevideo Maru is hit by bombs, folds, and in just eleven minutes sinks. Those on the ship have very little time, the prisoners must return to the deck. Assuming they succeed. Those in the sea cling to debris, anything that can help them stay afloat. Desperate fight. Tracked down many years later, a Japanese sailor, Yohiaki Yamachi, will add an unverifiable detail that is often re-launched: some of the shipwrecked would have begun to sing the famous song farewell song (in Italian it is Il Waltz delle candela), the last farewell addressed to themselves and their comrades. Notes that are like prayer. Then he fell silent. We will never know if this actually happened.

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Sturgeon moves away, and the surviving crew members make it to the coast in a pair of lifeboats. According to the first version, they were all killed in the aftermath of the attack by Filipino militants. But this is not the case. The shipment disappears, in Australia few know the truth, and they will discover it only at the end of the conflict once they have reckoned with those who remain at Rabaul. A long investigation begins with the analysis of draft books, documents, checks and official reports. The difficulty of investigating the suspicions of the covers, the shaky stories, and the lack of subtleties. Yamachi also claims that a Japanese unit was going to recover a core of prisoners, something that further examination denied. There is also uncertainty about the identity of the victims, fueled by some observations of the Japanese. It is possible that some may have died on another freighter. These are the mysteries that often accompany disasters at sea. It is important for historians but also a detail for those soon lost. Search the archives on the mainland while the Montevideo Maro is destined to become a shrine and nothing will be touched.

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