The Swamp Ghost

Over to you Charles Abel (Editorial)
Post Courier [ March 1, 2010 | Read Article Online ]

I write in regards to the article in The National dated February 17, 2010 in which the Minister for Culture and Tourism’s decision to stop further export of war aeroplane relics, “Except for parts needed for our two aircraft undergoing restoration in Australia”. It seems that the HCharles Abel, has made a bad decision or is completely ignorant of the facts. Let us go over the fact:
* The two aircraft the Minister speaks of are the Kawasaki Tony Japanese fighter and the P-38 Lightning American fighter.
* The Kawasaki Tony was a “complete aircraft” sitting at the Modern History Museum at Gordons which did not require any parts to complete. In fact it was probably the most complete original example of this aircraft in the world. It was taken away to Australia to be used as a pattern to build more Kawasaki Tony aircrafts and exchange was to be returned completely renewed.
* The P-38 aircraft was also taken away from Modern History by a Robert Grenert of HARS in Sydney to be rebuilt by him “at no expense” to the National Museum as this was a trade off supposedly with the former Director, Mr Soroi Eoe for dozens of aircraft that Mr Grenert had already recovered from all over Papua New Guinea.
* This P-38 was also very complete, so why has Mr Grenert already recovered in excess of 7 P-38 Lightning fighter aircrafts under the disguise of requiring more parts?
* How can it be that these relatively complete aircraft require so many other aircraft parts to restore them?
* It seems very strange that this Mr Grenert was also the man behind the “Swamp Ghost” fiasco, and is also the man; Hon Minister Able is seemed to be trusting with recovering more relics?
* The question to the Minister is, why would restoring only two aircrafts require so many wrecks to complete?
* Why does this Mr Grenert recovered so many other types of aircraft unless of course he is using them for himelf?
* Why does the Hon. Minister allow only one individual (Mr Grenert) to have a monopoly on recovering wrecks? Especially the person that was behind the Swamp Ghost fiasco?
* Hon. Minister Able has a brother on the Board of Trustees for the National Museum, is this not a conflict interest?
* How do the people or local communities where these relics are recovered benefit?
* Mr Grenert has a reputation of removing wrecks from sites and not compensating landowners. He has reputation of lying excuse is always the same, “I am working for the National Museum.”
* Back in 2006, Grenert shipped some aircraft relics to Port Moresby from Lorengau, Manus Province to be transhipped to Australia. However, some smart offices from the Modern History confiscated the shipment but no one knows where the cargo is now so can someone from the National Museum shed some light on this cargo.
* The Douglas Boston Bomber was completely restored by the Royal Australian Airforce in exchange for two other aircrafts. They have stored the aircrafts free of charge for many years for the National Museum and they will continue to store it at nil cost until such time as the Museum has a place to store and exhibit the aircraft.
* The Hon. Minister and our other political leaders made a fuss about the shipment of Swamp Ghost from Agiambo swamp to Lae to be transpired to the USA. They are very good at making comment to get publicity but do not know where to put their money where their mouth is. They are all empty drunks make a lot of noise. Can they do anything with the people who are scraping the aluminium and selling them to the scrap metal dealers?
* If the Minister and the Government and Politicians can’t do anything with the scraping and the scrap metal dealers then they should allow the overseas based restoration companies to come into the country and salvage the relics for restoration otherwise they will end up in the scrap metal dealer’s yards. Over to you Minister and Government

By Restoration enthusiast
KA Denge

          B-17E 41-2446 art by Jack Fellows via IHRP

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