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Following the sinking of a Soviet missile submarine in March 1968, U.S. intelligence agencies were able to determine the precise location and to develop a means of raising the submarine from a depth of more than 16,000 feet. Previously, the deepest salvage attempt of a submarine had been accomplished at 245 feet. The remarkable effort to reach the K-129, which contained nuclear-armed torpedoes and missiles as well as cryptographic equipment, was conducted with Soviet naval ships a few hundred yards from the lift ship, the Hughes Glomar Explorer.
While other books have been published about this secret project, none has provided an accurate and detailed account of this remarkable undertaking. To fully document the story, the authors conducted extensive interviews with men who were on board the Glomar Explorer and the USS Halibut, the submarine that found the wreckage, as well as with U.S. naval intelligence officers and with Soviet naval officers and scientists.
The authors had access to the Glomar Explorer’s logs and to other documents from U.S. and Soviet sources. The book is based, in part, on the research for Michael White's ground-breaking documentary film,Azorian: The Raising of the K-129, released in late 2009. As a result of the research for the book and the documentary film, the CIA reluctantly issued a report on Project Azorian in early 2010, even though they tried to withhold details that were in that brief document from the public record by redacting one-third of it. In this book, the story of the CIA’s Project Azorian is finally revealed after decades of secrecy.
Developed by French physicist Auguste Piccard and his son Jacques, the bathyscaph Trieste was a scientific marvel that allowed unprecedented scientific, technical, and military feats in the ocean depths. France and the United States both acquired and subsequently developed variants of the original bathyscaph. While both France and the United States employedthe bathyscaph as a tool for scientific investigation of the deepest ocean depths, the U.S. Navy developed and employed the Trieste for military missions as well.From its earliest years, participants in the Trieste program realized that they were making history, blazing a trail into previously unexplored and unexploited depths, developing new capabilities and opening a new frontier. Comparisons with developments in space and the space-race between the United States and the Soviet Union often weremade concerning the Trieste program and contemporary developments in undersea technologies and capabilities.
The Trieste opened the entire oceans to exploration, exploitation, and operations. The bathyscaph was a first-generation system, a “Model-T” that spawned an entirely new industry and encouraged new concepts for deep-ocean naval operations. Advances in deep-sea technologies lacked the “gee-whiz” factor of the concurrent spacerace, but were highly significant in the development of new technology, new knowledge, and new military capabilities.
Opening the Great Depths is the story of the three Trieste deep-ocean vehicles, their officers and enlisted men, and the civilians, often told in their own words, documenting for the first time the earliest years of humanity's probing into Earth's final frontier.
The top-ten lists in Navy’s Most Wanted™ rank the world’s biggest battleships, the fastest aircraft, and most powerful submarines. Pop culture’s take on naval affairs is shown in chapters on the best and worst Navy movies, the Navy in song and fiction, and movie stars and politicians who served. Read the best naval quotes and learn where they came from, marvel at the variety of weapons that have gone to sea, and shiver at the world’s worst naval disasters.
Polmar and Cavas have mined their expert knowledge to entertain readers with interesting and intriguing trivia on all things blue and gold. Perfect for sailors, family members, and anyone with an interest in the Navy both historically and today, Navy’s Most Wanted™ belongs on bookshelves, nightstands, and in lockers everywhere—even Davey Jones’s!
This second volume of Norman Polmar's landmark study details the role of carriers in the unification of the U.S. armed forces and strategic deterrence, fiscally constrained Great Britain, the development of British Commonwealth and ex-colonial navies, and the efforts of France and the Netherlands to rebuild their fleets. The role of the modern carrier-nine nations currently possess them-is discussed, as are the issues confronting nations that might acquire them. Chapters on the Soviet Union's effort to produce carriers are included for the first time. The development of both carrier planes and the many "oddball" aircraft that have flown from carriers-such as the U-2 spy plane-are also examined. Appendixes include comprehensive data on all carriers built and converted through 2006.
This volume is a valuable companion to the critically acclaimed Volume I, which covers aircraft carrier development and operations from 1909 to 1945.
"DEFCON-2 is the best single volume on the Cuban Missile Crisis published and is an important contribution to the history of the Cold War. Beyond the military and political facts of the crisis, Polmar and Gresham sketch the personalities that created and coped with the crisis. They also show us how close we came to the edge without becoming sensationalistic."—Larry Bond, bestselling author of Dangerous Ground
Spy-satellite and aerial-reconnaissance photos reveal that one of the United States's bitterest enemies may be acquiring weapons of mass destruction and the means to use them against the American homeland. Administration officials refuse to accept intelligence professionals' interpretation of these images and order an end to spy missions over the offending nation. More than a month later, after vicious infighting, the president orders the spy missions to resume. The new photos reveal an array of ballistic missiles, capable of carrying nuclear warheads and striking deep within U.S. territory. It appears that the missiles will be fully operational within one week.
This is not a plot setup for a suspense novel; it is the true story of the most terrifying moment in the 45-year Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union: the Cuban Missile Crisis. DEFCON-2 tells this tale as it has never been told before—from both sides, with the help of hundreds of recently declassified U.S. and Soviet documents, as well as interviews with numerous former spies, military figures, and government officials who speak out here for the first time.