ABDA Naval Forces
CL De Ruyter (F) (Dutch) Rear
Admiral Karel Doorman
CL Tromp (Dutch)
CA Houston (USN) Captain Albert H. Rooks
CL Marblehead (USN) Captain Robinson
DD Bankert (Dutch)
DD Piet Hein (Dutch)
DD Van Ghent (Dutch)
DD Barker (USN)
DD Bulmer (USN)
DD Edwards (USN)
DD Stewart (USN)
While patrolling the Makassar Strait, the ABDA Naval Force was attacked by 37 Japanese bombers from Kendari before it could make contact with any incoming Japanese Invasion forces. The USN light cruiser Marblehead was badly damaged by the air attack suffering several hits. The USN heavy cruiser Houston also suffered damage to her 3rd 8” gun turret which was out of action until her loss. Rear-Admiral Doorman’s flagship, De Ruyter, sustained some minor damage from the air attacks. As a result of these air attacks the ABDA naval forces escorted the badly damaged Marblehead back to Tjilatjap before any Japanese Invasion forces could be attacked.
Imperial Japanese Navy
Possible Imperial Japanese Naval Forces which the ABDA Naval Forces would have intercepted on their way to invade Makassar are listed below.
Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) forces assigned
to Makassar Invasion
Covering Force - Rear Admiral Takeo Takagi
5th Cruiser Division
CA Nachi (F)
Desdiv 7, Cardiv 1, 1st Air Fleet
DD Akebono Lt. Cmdr. Minoru Nakagawa
Desdiv 6, Desron 1, 1st Fleet
DD Ikazuchi Lt. Cmdr. Sunsaku Kudo
Convoy Escort (1st Base Force) Rear Admiral
Sentai 16, 3rd Fleet (Nagara was administratively assigned to this unit)
CL Nagara (F)
Desdiv 8, Desron 2, 2nd Fleet
DD Asashio Lt. Cmdr. Gorou Yoshii
DD Oshio Cmdr. Kiyoshi Kikkawa
DD Michishio Lt. Cmdr. Masami Ogura
DD Arashio Cmdr. Hideo Kuboki
Desdiv 15, Desron 2, 2nd Fleet
DD Hayashio Cmdr. Kiyoshi Kaneda
DD Kuroshio Cmdr. Tamaki Ugaki
DD Oyashio Cmdr. Tokiyoshi Arima
Desdiv 21, Desron 1, 1st Fleet
DD Wakaba Lt. Cmdr. Masakichi Kuroki
DD Nenohi Lt. Cmdr. Saburo Terauchi
DD Hatsushimo Lt. Cmdr. Satoru Migihama
Minesweeper Division 21
Subchaser Division 2
SC Ch 13
SC Ch 14
SC Ch 15
Subchaser Division 1
SC Ch ?
SC P ?
SC P ?
Air Group - Rear Admiral Fujita
Seaplane Tender Division 11
ST Sanuki Maru
Support Force (Stationed in the Balikpapan
Area) - Rear Admiral Sueto Hirose
Desdiv 24, Desron 4, 2nd Fleet
Desdiv 9, Desron 4, 2nd Fleet
DD Asagumo Cmdr. Tooru Iwahashi
DD Natsugumo Cmdr. Moritarou Tsukamoto
DD Minegumo Lt. Cmdr. Yasuatsu Suzuki
30th Minesweeper Division
11th Minesweeper Division
6 Transports carrying the Sasebo Combined Special Naval Landing Force.
Note: Natsushio was sunk by the USN Sub S-37 (Lt. Dempsey) on February 8th, 1942 off Makassar.
1. The Battle of the Java Sea by F. C. Van Oosten
2. Chronology of the War at Sea 1939-1945 by J. Rohwer & G. Hummelchen
3. A Battle History of the Imperial Japanese Navy (1941-1945) by P. Dull
4. Nihon Kaigun website at: http://www.skypoint.com/~jbp/kaigun.htm
see Allyn Nevitt’s ‘Long Lancers’ page.
5. Sea Battles in Close-Up, WWII, Vol. 2, Java Sea by E. Grove
6. Japanese Cruisers of the Pacific War by E. LaCroix & L. Wells III.