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Book Review: Project Azorian, the CIA and 
the Raising of the K-129

December 1, 2012
Reviewed by Dr. R. Norris Keeler

Book By Norman Polmar and Michael White (U.S. Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, Maryland 2010, 238 pages)

In 1974, the United States attempted to raise a sunken Soviet submarine from a depth of 16,000 feet, in the Pacific Ocean north of Hawaii. The submarine had been lost in March 1968. The operation to do this was camouflaged as an ocean bottom mining operation carried out by the Hughes Glomar Explorer, specially constructed for that purpose. As the Soviet general staff later admitted, the deception was excellent. They did not believe recovery from such a depth could be accomplished.

In thoroughly describing this ambitious effort, the book begins with the story of how the news media, specifically the Los Angeles Times, published an article describing U.S. attempts to raise a Russian submarine, the K-129, from a depth of 16,000 feet. This publication compromised the operation, at least partially. The authors then describe the role of the USS Halibut, which found and localized the K-129. By coincidence, the Halibut also was a strategic-missile-launching submarine as was the K-129. The Halibut’s missiles were the Regulus, an air-breathing platform launched from the surfaced submarine.

The K-129’s missiles were of the “Serb” designation, underwater-launched ballistic missiles, three in the sail aft, with thermonuclear warheads. The Halibut, with its large spaces available for Regulus missiles, had ample room for cameras and other sensors with the missiles removed. These sensors were deployed while submerged in the search for the K-129.

Technology Will Be the Leveling Tool for Pacific Rebalancing

November 16, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

TechNet Asia-Pacific 2012 Online Show Daily: Day 3

Quote of the Day: “Anyone who wants to go to conflict is not right.”—Lt. Gen. Francis J. Wiercinski, USA, commanding general, U.S. Army Pacific

Technology advances hold the key for the U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM) to fulfill its new missions as part of the U.S. strategic realignment toward the Asia-Pacific region. Many of the technologies that top the wish lists of PACOM leadership are the usual suspects: enablers of interoperability and data sharing. But, in addition to introducing new capabilities, technology advances also are needed for defending against emerging vulnerabilities.

The third and final day of TechNet Asia-Pacific 2012, held November 13-15 in Honolulu, Hawaii, featured a well-distributed set of PACOM leaders describing their challenges and needs. One panel featured four of the command’s joint directors discussing their requirements in the context of each other’s fields. Ultimately, the head of the Pacific Fleet delivered a straight-up wish list designed to carry the fleet well into the foreseeable future.

One item that seemed to be at the top of everyone’s list is the ability to share information across domains. Rear Adm. Paul B. Becker, USN, commander, PACOM J-2, director for intelligence, cited the ability to engage in multidomain data transfer. That common wish was expanded on by Brig. Gen. J. Marcus Hicks, USAF, director, communications systems, J-6, PACOM. Gen. Hicks also requested interoperability and the ability to move data across the domains.

Rebalancing Is a Long-Term Endeavor

November 15, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

The commander of the Pacific Fleet sees changes taking place far into the future.

Ultimately, Many Cyber Operations May Be Local

November 15, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

The infinite domain may best be addressed on a geographical basis.

PACOM Directors Think Regionally Across Vast Area

November 15, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

The nature of the challenges facing the largest U.S. area of operation require acting locally as well as globally.

Pacific Command Joint Directors Share Similar Technology Wish Lists

November 15, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

Whether in operations, intelligence or information systems, the same technology concerns predominate.

Major Technology Changes Loom for Army

November 15, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

The next two years will see huge leap-ahead capabilities for ground forces, but with an increase in inherent risks.

Conflict in the South China Sea Would Be Devastating

November 15, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

The military goal to ensure Asia-Pacific security aims to prevent an economically disastrous war.

The U.S. Army Returns to an Army-Dominant Pacific

November 15, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

Deployed out of theater for a decade, the U.S. Army Pacific returns with an increased emphasis on its mission.

Cyberspace, Technology Innovation Throw Plans Into Well of Uncertainty

November 15, 2012
By Robert K. Ackerman

 

 

 

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