Scottish TV news is reporting that the UK National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers, and its sister unions, are outraged by the fact that Shell has awarded the Brent oilfield decommissioning contract to a ship with a Nazi name, The Pieter Schelte.
The unions intend to take coordinated action to halt the project.
Numerous articles have been published today as a result of a PR campaign by Shell in which it claims to have learnt the lessons from the Brent Spar debacle.
The STV story is the first to mention the Nazi name controversy.
Under the circumstances, what a spectacular own goal Shell has scored by associating itself with a ship, supposedly the biggest in the world, named after an officer in the murderous Waffen SS. It is a sickening insult to the memory of all allied military and seafarers who died in World War 2, including 44,000 British sailors and over 30,000 merchant seaman. And of course to the tens of millions who perished at the hands of the most evil regime in history.
Royal Dutch Shell, one of the first to use the Pieter Schelte, has known for ages about the controversy surrounding the Nazi name. A number of news articles were published about the toxic name from 2007 onwards. Lloyds Register, heavily associated with the ship from its inception, has also known for a long time about the Nazi name. Both global giants turned a blind eye, choosing to put business interests (money) before scruples.
My Petition to rename the ship
STV NEWS HEADLINE: Energy giant criticised over ship named after Nazi war criminal
3 February 2015
Energy giant Shell has been criticised over plans to use a ship named after a Nazi war criminal to decommission a North Sea oil field.
Shell awarded the contract for the decommissioning of the Brent field to the Allseas Group, owners of the massive ship, Pieter Schelte.
The vessel is named after the the father of Allseas owner Edwin Heerema. Schelte was a Nazi who served in the Waffen SS during the Second World War.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “It is sickening that a vessel named after a senior Nazi jailed for war crimes is set to be working on a taxpayer-funded contract in British waters.
“This scandal must be stopped and RMT will work with our sister union’s and the ITF to bring this outrage to public attention and force it to be called to a halt.”
Schelte disappeared in August 1943 and joined a resistance group in Switzerland.
He was arrested after the war and jailed for three years, but was released after one and a half for his work with the resistance. The Dutchman later went on to become a respected maritime engineer.