Photos Navies Of All Nations

On September 9th, 1943, Littorio class battleship Roma sinks to a Luftwaffe Dornier Do-217’s Fritz-X radio-controlled Bomb, outside the Strait of Bonifacio.

Roma was sunk during a Luftwaffe attack on the Italian fleet which had left its bases and was sailing towards Malta (originally towards La Maddalena in Sardinia, where it was supposed to stop for some time waiting for the situation to clear up, long story) in compliance with the terms of the Armistice of Cassibile.

The German attack and the sinking of Roma are thus described by Lieutenant Agostino Incisa della Rocchetta, fire control officer of the port side 90 mm anti-aircraft guns.
Incisa, pictured here onboard Roma, was one of the survivors who were closer to the point where the bomb fell, causing the deflagration that sank the ship; he was also the highest ranking survivor, having personally given the order to abandon ship as all officers senior to him were dead or dying.

From 12:00 to 16:00 I was off duty (…) in my place in the port anti-aircraft fire director turret was Lieutenant Natale Contestabile. I was with the senior fire control officer, Lieutenant Commander Luigi Giugni, in the “technical artillery administrative office”, a semicircular room next to the conning tower, just below the bridge. (…) Suddenly I heard a voice: “Aircraft on the starboard side!” I immediately headed out of the room and I saw a German twin-engined aircraft. Immediately afterwards, a red light departed from its fuselage and the same voice as before said: “It made a recognition signal”. Whoever had said that was apparently right, as it seemed that the aircraft had dropped one of those flares that German aircraft used in order to be recognized by the ships: usually they split up into three or four stars of different colors, according to a sequence that had been agreed between German air force commands and Italian naval commands. But this time the flare did not split up, it came straight down, leaving a light blue-ish trail. A few seconds later, I saw a column of water rise about a hundred meters from Roma.

Only after such an obvious manifestation of hostility by the Germans, the “air attack alarm” signal was given on Roma, and thus Medanich, the fire director of the 90 [mm anti-aircraft guns] on the port side, was able to open fire on the second aircraft that was coming towards us (they attacked one at a time). He had been boiling with impatience for some time, as he had had the aircraft in his sights for a long time. In the meantime, I had gone to the bridge (…) I wanted to see someone from the command in order to receive some directive. I saw Captain Del Cima in the enclosed bridge, inspecting the sky with his binoculars, and I noticed that the forward armoured door of the conning tower was open. He did not say anything and I rushed towards my turret, from which Contestabile came out and I took his place. (…)

With my port guns I could only fire on the aircraft that were flying away after attacking us; a meager satisfaction, as this was a punitive fire, not a preventive one, which is the kind of fire that is essential for the safety of the ship.

I barely noticed the impact of the first bomb, as I did not feel the oscillations of the ship, being absorbed in [directing] the fire of my guns. However power went out for a few seconds and I saw with serious concern the gabion of the radar which, having detached from its support owing to the concussion caused by the bomb, had fallen onto the barrel of my no. 1 gun, blocking it; as I was about to order the crew of that plant to come out of the turret and throw the gabion into the sea, I was warned of another aircraft, approaching from the starboard. (…) I rotated the turret but I was unable to put it into the sights of the turret’s binoculars (…) so I followed it with my personal pair of binoculars. (…)

A few seconds passed; I am not sure if I saw the red flare detaching from the aircraft, but I remember, as if it were now, a huge black barrel that fell down, missing the turret by no more than one metre. We heard a dull thud and the power inside the turret went out. I gave the order to switch to the aft fire direction center, which was just aft of the turret, but a bit lower, and I jumped from the turret to the roof of the bridge [of the fire direction center]. There I found Contestabile, who asked me: “What’s happening?”, I answered: “It’s simple, a bomb fell and now steam and black smoke are coming out of here”. A thick cloud of steam mixed with smoke came out of a point located between the conning tower and the portside forward 152 mm turret. I had just finished saying that, when a tremendously violent puff came out of the bowels of the ship, the atmosphere around me became deep yellow and an unbearable wave of heat engulfed me.

I think that the ship was suddenly lifted and then violently fell back, as I found myself lying on the roof of the bridge, with my arms stretched forward. I saw the skin of my hands contract, wrinkle and take the dusky color of roasted meat; I felt all the skin of my face contract from the cheekbones, from the forehead, from the cheeks, from the chin, as if a huge hand of fire wanted to collect it in its fist, near the mouth.

There’s a ethnological museum in Rome, the Pigorini Museum, derived from the Kircherian Museum, founded by Jesuit father Kircher, where strange trophies of the Mundrukos (Brazil), Jivaros and Ochuali (Ecuador) natives are exposed. These are heads of enemies of these tribes, deboned and reduced to the size of a fist; their mouth is sewn shut with colored cords, so that they won’t be able to curse those who did that to them. I felt like my head had become like the ones at the museum: a terrible feeling.

It should be noted that I was not directly engulfed by the fire, but rather cooked by the reflection: I was 3 or 4 meters from the flame. All of this happened in 4 or 5 seconds (…) the burst of flame lasted a few seconds and in that short time it doomed our most modern battleship, but in that tragedy we had a little luck: there was a deflagration and not an explosion (…) The propellant charges of two 152 mm turrets and of one, perhaps two 381 mm turrets, caught fire all at the same time; several tons of cordite, which caused a powerful puff, a huge burst of flame, but did not explode. The explosive inside the shells was not involved, otherwise the ship would have been pulverized (…) TNT explodes, cordite deflagrates, at least ours (…) Roma’s magazines therefore deflagrated and allowed 1/3 of the crew to save themselves.

However the trauma, for me, had been so deep that I was so sure that the burns I had suffered would not allow my survival (I was, in other words, so sure I was going to die) that, being then as now a convinced Catholic, I prepared spiritually for death and I waited with calm and extraordinary serenity the moment of death. I was even curious to see what was beyond, without fear, with trust. Since then I have regretted that perfect preparedness for death, and I fear that it will not come back, that when my time comes I won’t have the time or the right spiritual disposition. Frankly, I consider that as a lost occasion.

Minutes passed, and nothing happened. So I took a look around me: there was nobody in sight. Contestabile had disappeared, nobody came out of the conning tower. The armored door [of the conning tower] was closed by an electrical motor. It is true that it was also possible to manually open it with a ratchet lever, but I was too weak to operate it, and on top of that I think it [the lever] existed only inside the conning tower.

I rose to my feet and I had the curiosity to peek to the left, where the bomb had fallen, and I laid my hands on the rail: it was scorching hot; the paint on the superstructures detached in bubbles and burned, crackling, making acrid smoke. Thus I burned my hands even on the underside and the skin detached from the palms and remained hanging like a pair of gloves (…). The thick smoke prevented me from seeing anything and I did not notice that the revolving part of the no. 2 main gun turret was no longer there.

Still thinking that I was going to die, I decided to find a place where I could die without breathing so much smoke and I climbed the ladder on the aft side of the conning tower till the admiral’s bridge; having learned after burning my palms on the rail, I leaned on the handrail with my flexed arms, so that the handrail would be in contact with the interior side of my arms, protected by the sleeves of my fabric coat. On the admiral’s bridge, the air was respirable, but the minutes passed and I did not die: I had to admit that death was postponed to another time. I did not see anyone there, either; the conning tower was closed and there was a great silence. I knew that besides several officers which I knew well and I held in great esteem, Admiral Bergamini must have been inside, a man of extraordinary humanity and beloved by everyone, and with him Rear Admiral Stanislao Caraciotti, a moral figure without equals, friend of my family since many years. Sadly I was too weak to try anything to rescue them.

I climbed down all the ladders and below the signal station I saw, entangled upside down in the steps, the charred body of a signalman.

When I reached the forecastle on the starboard side, a group of people, who I think were a petty officer and two enlisted men, pointed me the hole made by the first bomb; I proceeded towards the stern, crawling on all fours beneath the motorboat which had fallen across the forecastle, having been hurled out of its supports atop the deckhouse; I climbed down the ladders that led aft and I found myself in the middle of a group of people, all uninjured and wearing lifejackets, who were meandering aimlessly. I told anyone who could hear me and especially the officers, not to jump into the sea, to wait as the ship, despite the heavy list, seemed still capable of floating. Then I climbed back up the port ladder that led to the forecastle, looking for a lifevest. A seaman appeared at the aft door of the nearby 152 mm turret and gave me a lifejacket. Later in Mahon I tried to find out who he had been, but I was unable to discover anything. I think it was an angel… I really think so, because without that lifejacket I would not have been able to stay afloat. Perhaps it was the one crew member from that turret that was never found.

I saw Ensign Scotto, unconscious, lying a few meters from the turret. I told Ensign Meneghini, who was passing by, to pick him up and help him, which he did.

Having returned astern, I saw that the ship was listing more and more and that the water was licking the gunwale. Having realized that I was the highest ranking officer still alive, I gave the order to abandon ship. But many did not recognize me, as my face was blackened and my moustache burned off; I remember that Sub-Lieutenant Negrozzi tied my lifejacket to me, after I had taken off my coat, my binoculars and my handgun, I had carefully laid everything on an air intake and I had placed my shoes, perfectly aligned, at the base of the air intake. (…) I was sorry for having to leave my gun behind, for it was not a standard issue: it was a chrome-plated Smith & Wesson revolver, which I carried in a holster hanging on my left shoulder, below the coat, at the height of my elbow, like American policemen and gangsters. I kept on, besides my trousers, the pullover of the Naval Academy, the blue one with crossed red anchors, surmounted by the royal crown, on the left arm.

In the meantime some officers and several petty officers and men threw overboard the Carley floats that were atop the aft turrets; I think that the ones of the no. 3 main gun turret were damaged because they were thrown down without much regard and bounced on the deck.

At this point I climbed over the rail and I jumped into the sea “like a duck”; an athletic dive would have been useless, even impossible, since our feet were already level with the sea. I swam away from the ship as fast as I could and I reached a group of three men clinging on a cot. They were Sub-Lieutenants Orefice and Fidone and a seaman, I think yeoman Del Vecchio, who had lost the upper part of the biceps. The officers prayed me not to grab the cot in turn, otherwise we would have all sunk to the bottom. So I remained a few meters from them.

Meanwhile, the ship was listing more and more and the personnel who were still on the stern, uncertain if it would be better to jump from the starboard side (fearing that the capsizing ship would have fallen on them) or from the port side (where they would have to jump from a considerable height), started to roll over the deck, which was now almost vertical. They were at least twenty people, who could be clearly seen thanks to the red lifejackets they were wearing. Then the ship heeled over and some men managed to climb onto the overturned hull. But as soon as she was upside down, she broke into two: the aft part sank with an angle of 45 degrees, and a couple of men that slid under the waves clutching one of the great bronze screws that were shining under the sun, was the last sight I had of it. The bow part remained afloat for a longer time, in vertical position, to the point that we were perfectly able to see the red and golden emblem of Rome with the word “SPQR”; then it sank vertically: the two Sub-Lieutenants cried “Long live the King” and I joined them.

(…) The men on the motorboat [sent by the destroyer Mitragliere to pick up the survivors] shouted “The wounded first!”; I showed my hands and they immediately hauled me aboard. (…) As soon as I was on Mitragliere, they cut my pullover so that they would not have to pull it out over my burned hands and head. Someone gave me some liquor to drink; the nurse painted my hands with tannin and put some kind of ointment on my face and legs, also partially burned. (…) at dawn we were in front of the harbour of Mahon and at 8:30 we were landed from the ships and sent to the military hospital”.
Torpedo Boat Partizan III (TC-223), built on license from the USSR's Shershen-class torpedo boat in late 60s
Deutschland class pre-dreadnought battleship Schleswig-Holstein enters Danzig August 25, 1939.
Patrol Boat Iris (P-696). The vessel was built for Thomson-CSF (Thales) as a test platform for the Crotale missile. The system here differs from the one adopted by the French Navy, which uses an integrated launcher and fire control, similar to the regular land platform. Here, the FCS can be seen fore of the launcher. China appears to have been the only customer of this configuration.

She was later transferred to the French Navy, before moving to Maritime Affairs in 1996
Type 23 frigate HMS Richmond sailed from Portsmouth to join Exercise Cold Response 22. March 8, 2022
France & Egypt:
LHD Mistral (L9013) sails with frigates Alexandria (F911) Courbet (F712)
Maya class destroyer JS Maya (DDG-179), commissioned 2020
HMAS Adelaide and HMAS Supply return from Op Tonga Assist, 10th March 2022



UKRS HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was a Menzhinskiy-class frigate that served in the Ukrainian Navy from April 2, 1993 to March 1, 2022.

HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was named after Petro Konashevych-Sahaidachny.

HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was originally built at the Zalyv Shipbuilding yard in Kerch as a Project 1135.1 patrol ship of (Nerei/Krivak III) Menzhinskiy class.

HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) t was launched on March 29, 1992 and was commissioned on April 2, 1993.

HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was homeported at Odessa since March 2014.

HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was the flagship of the Ukrainian Navy. Her major armament was a single 100 mm gun.

HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was built at the Zalyv Shipbuilding yard, and was intended to be used by Soviet Border Troops as KIROV. However, on July 4, 1993, HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) raised the flag of the Ukrainian Navy. She was given the identification number of U130.

In 1994, HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) set sail for France to take part in the 50th anniversary commemorations of the Allied invasion of Normandy.

In 1995, HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) visited Abu Dhabi during the "Idex-95" exhibitions. HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was scheduled to visit Norfolk, Virginia in the United States with KOSTIANTYN OLSHANSKY. KOSTIANTYN OLSHANSKY visited but for unknown reasons HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130).

HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) also visited ports in Algeria, Bulgaria, Egypt, Georgia, Gibraltar, Israel, Portugal, Russia and Turkey.

Between November 2006 and November 2007, HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) underwent major repairs in Mykolaiv at a cost of 15 million hryvnia.

In 2008, HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) took part in OPERATION ACTIVE ENDEAVOUR in the Mediterranean Sea.

In February 2013, it was announced that HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) would be taking part in OPERATION OCEAN SHEILD, an anti-piracy campaign off the Horn of Africa.

HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) joined the Naval Force of the European Union (EUNAVFOR) in early January 2014 for anti-piracy operations. As HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) refueled in Greece, while Russian forces seized control of Crimea, Russian state media RT falsely reported on March 1, 2014 that HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY's crew had defected to Russia and raised the Russian flag. Shortly afterwards, the Wall Street Journal reported a Ukrainian Defense Ministry statement that HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was still flying the Ukrainian flag in port in Crete. According to the Defense Ministry, the commander of the ship stated that the crew had never defected to the Russians. HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) arrived in Odessa under the Ukrainian flag on March 5, 2017.

The Ukrainian naval command issued a contradictory report that on March 14 2017, HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) encountered a Russian naval group attempting to enter or having entered Ukrainian territorial waters. As HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) approached the group, they withdrew.

In September 2017, HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) entered Odessa to undergo repairs.

In May 2017 HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) suffered an engine failure shortly after undergoing repairs.

In July 2018 HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) participated in the SEA BREEZE 2018 multinational exercises.

On April 2, 2018 HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) celebrated the 25th anniversary of her commissioning.

In January 2022 it was indicated that HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) would undergo a refit and upgrade.

During the 2022 Russian Invasion of Ukraine, HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) was scuttled in Mykolaiv.

On March 3, 2022, a photo emerged showing HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) partially sunk in port.

On March 4, 2022, the Ukrainian Defence Minister confirmed that HETMAN SAHAIDACHNY (U130) had been scuttled in Mykolaiv on the first day of the invasion to prevent its capture by the Russian forces.
KV Bjørnøya, the newest vessel being built for the Norwegian Coast Guard
Imperial Japan:
Aircraft carrier Kaga undergoing conversion to an aircraft carrier, taken at the Yokosuka Naval Arsenal between 1927 and 1929. From the photos, you can observe a bit of the interior of that famous triple flight deck.
RN, Netherlands:
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Project 1144 Orlan (NATO Kirov) class nuclear cruiser Kirov underway in the Barents Sea in 1981

Ships of the Pacific Fleet at Truda Bay, Vladivostok in 2004, decommissioned in the late 80's and early 90's and left to rust instead of scrapping
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Battleship Scharnhorst in 1939
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The wreck of the destroyer HMS Havock (H-43) off Kelibia (Tunisia), where it had ran aground and had been scuttled by her crew, August 1942

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The Italian submarine Aradam had spotted the British destroyer and had fired two torpedoes; later, it had seen the same ship grounded. The RM concluded that the attack had been successful and claimed it as a "kill"; however, after confronting the British and Italian versions (and quite a bit of historiographical debate), the logical conclusion is that the attack went unnoticed by the British crew, whose mistake was to blame for the grounding of the destroyer.

HMS King George V while conducting exercises with her sister HMS Howe. 17 October 1942
Pre-dreadnought battleship HMS King Edward VII in 1907

On the morning of 6 January 1916, while steaming to Belfast for a refit, King Edward VII struck a naval mine that had been laid by the German auxiliary cruiser SMS Möwe. Attempts to tow King Edward VII to port failed when she took on a dangerous list, so she was abandoned and her crew evacuated to several destroyers. King Edward VII sank later that day with the loss of only one life (a man fell between the battleship and one of the rescue vessels)
HMS Dreadnought (S-101) en-route to sink the German derelict tanker Essberger Chemist with HMS Llandaff (F-61) in background, June 24, 1967

During her career, Dreadnought performed many varied missions. On 24 June 1967, she was ordered to sink the wrecked and drifting German ship Essberger Chemist. Three torpedoes hit along the length of the target, but the gunners of HMS Salisbury, a frigate, completed the task by piercing the tanks which were just keeping Essberger Chemist afloat.
Arleigh Burke class destroyer USS The Sullivans (DDG-68) in Rotterdam to aid in NATO operations

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