On that one fateful day of June 7, 2015 the headlines read “Lufthansa Airlines flight number KB101 downed by Ukrainian separatists.” This time a German airliner was en route from Stockholm, Sweden to Ankara, Turkey. That is when the Russian separatists using ground to air Russian missiles targeted her. Bad boys with big (Russian) toys can be dangerous. In this case several satellite based weather systems were tracking flight KB101 when three missile tracks from separatist held Ukraine zeroed in on her. Germany started to roll tanks into Ukraine.
All this really pissed off the king’s men running the Kremlin. So somehow, somewhere, somebody ordered the super-secret Reeba submarine to launch a warning shot across the bow of America. Reeba was ordered to sneak out of her sunken hideaway near the Fort Lauderdale Inlet and launch a nuclear tipped cruise missile off the coast of Washington, D.C., and that is where my involvement began.
This Reeba plan was brilliant thought Ivan in 2007. Make sure they do not rediscover their balls.
But a little nuclear explosion in view of the White House? Where nobody died? This was perfect. This was not treason. This would get those God Damn German tanks out of Ukraine!
So Ivan pulled the trigger on Reeba. Within 24 hours Reeba had crewed up, leaving only Polina and those married couples with children. They would continue to live as sleeper cells gathering intelligence. Polina could drive that speedboat and detonate the nuclear device planted near the Fort Lauderdale Inlet, if a hot war started. Captain Nikolay of the Reeba was put on wartime alert. This was no drill!
Reeba’s crew dropped the hull panel to release Reeba on the inland side of the tanker 600 feet below the ocean surface, next to Fort Lauderdale. Our Virginia class sonar systems “heard” a wide range of electromagnetic signals in addition to the audible sound frequencies of a torpedo tube hatch opening. Thus, the electronics aboard Reeba suddenly came to life. We had a target location already in the computer. We fired two MK48 torpedoes. One targeted the bubble from the missile breaking the ocean’s surface and exploded. This explosion damaged the guidance system in the cruise missile. And so as this cruise missile flew it now started going through other embedded targets all over America including Chicago, New York, Washington D.C., Houston, Texas and the erratic motions of the cruise missile became world news very quickly.
It was not the Kremlin’s idea to kill American woman and children with U.S. Navy anti-missile defense systems. But that’s what happened. In fact we learned later that the missile’s incoming threat detection system was to trigger the nuke harmlessly a hundred miles off the East Coast if it was not going to reach ground zero off the Washington, D.C. shoreline. The best laid plans of mice and men can backfire when reckless leaders play with weapons of mass destruction.
Apparently Reeba had ten knots over our top speed and of course there was the entire Atlantic Ocean to hide in. I had a target resolution on Reeba for her 4000 mile cross ocean voyage. I shared my target resolution of coordinates, depth, speed and direction with every U.S. Navy vessel in the Atlantic Ocean.
The Sonar Exec was caught (accidentally) talking to the Control Room. “They launched a fish at us, it is honing in at high speed. We are a sitting duck. If that is an ASTOR type nuclear torpedo, then all of us within ten miles will be vaporized or vibrated to death. God be with us all! It’s time to pray!”
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.31(d)|
Read an Excerpt
It was an unseasonably warm spring day in Groton, Connecticut when I walked across the bow to take command of the nuclear powered submarine, USS Brooklyn (SSN-777). This moment was the culmination of many years of study, hard work, dedication and no small amount of luck.
As I took my seat on the submarine's small deck, my mind wandered back to my father and my grandfather, both Navy men. My grandfather lost his father when he was just fourteen. As the man of the family he had to quit school and find work to support his mother and four siblings. So my grandfather jointed the Navy just after the end of World War I. He must have found a second family in the Navy since somewhere along the line he decided to make it a career. He spent World War II on a series of destroyers in the Pacific. His luck finally ran out when his ship was hit by a Japanese kamikaze in the waning days of that war. He left a young widow and a small son.
In the last year of WWII kamikaze pilots sank fifty U.S. Navy ships and took hundreds more out of service. A kamikaze plane is essentially the forerunner of today's cruise missile. It was a flying bomb guided by an intelligent guidance system that could evade enemy fire by changing course before hitting its target. Thousands of U.S. sailors were killed at the hands of a few hundred Japanese pilots. A minor financial loss to Japan of a few hundred easily replaceable mass produced planes took out billions of dollars of American Navy ships which would take years to replace.
Today's South China Sea tensions can be viewed from this kamikaze history. China has stationed thousands of intelligent cruise missiles on land, at sea and on sand dunes projecting 1000 miles from her coast. Potentially one ten million dollar cruise missile travelling at 2000 mph can take out a one billion dollar destroyer or a twelve billion dollar aircraft carrier. That cruise missile does not sacrifice a single pilot, unlike the relatively slow moving kamikaze plane. The next generation hypersonic cruise missiles travel at 6000 mph. China, Russia and America are testing these ship killers now. Currently no nation has the slightest idea how to defend against such a weapon. Surface warships will soon be obsolete. That leaves submarines to defend our island nation.
My grandmother never remarried. After the war she returned to her small home town on Long Island. With grit and determination she worked hard to provide for herself and her son, but it was always a struggle. My grandmother had a healthy respect for the value of a good education, along with a mighty determination that her son would have that opportunity to get one. She nurtured the idea that the United States Naval Academy would be a fine place to attend college, and my dad agreed. He graduated from the Naval Academy in 1968, and began a career in the Navy in the prestigious SEAL community. My father met an untimely end from a sniper's bullet during a special operation in some unknown corner of the world. He, too, left a young widow and a small son, a seventh grader.
My mother and I lived in the same small town as my grandmother. From those two brave women, I learned to understand how precious our liberties are, and that they must be protected in order to thrive. When I reached the end of high school, I knew that it was my turn to step up, so I applied to the Naval Academy, where I decided to major in physics. My fascination with science seemed a natural tie-in to submarine service, and so my career began.
I saw my wife and two young sons in the crowd. I knew that I must carry out my mission to protect and defend the United States of America so that they would know the same liberties that previous generations had fought and died for.
I sat on the deck of the USS Brooklyn. I reached this milestone as a result of untold hours of hard work, but I was also blessed with the good fortune to work with some of the best sailors in the world. Any success that I had achieved must also be shared with them.
I glanced over at the crew of the Brooklyn, a group of very smart men, well-trained, dedicated, and fully capable of meeting any challenge that came our way. Where would the next three years bring us? What challenges would we face together? My name is Captain Minard.
Retired Navy Captain of a nuclear powered submarine, J.J. Mackin, was the technical advisor for this book. The above autobiography of fictional Captain Minard is based on facts.
The Naval Academy, up until 1964, did not issue a college degree. It issued a military science diploma which, in effect, was a Warrior Creed diploma. When I graduated in 1998, things had changed. There were women. There was a choice of college majors ranging from computer science to history. Of course, the physical training was as intense as ever. I majored in physics, and right after graduating the Naval Academy went to Nuclear Power School in Orlando, Florida and then on to prototype training in Charleston, South Carolina. I had to practically memorize about six feet of nuclear manuals. Six hours of sleep became a dream. Often, it was less. I also had to complete a course at the Naval Submarine School in Groton, Connecticut.
We had to be self-reliant and be prepared for any material problem. That ranged from equipment malfunction to a fishing net ensnarled on a propeller and making noise that would have us detected by our adversaries. Additionally, every step to dive and surface a submarine was committed to memory, all weapons systems and backup systems had to become reflex actions. Finally, every potential enemy threat from a mine to an incoming torpedo had to be mind-gamed. He who kept his mind above the game, watching the biggest picture, lived another day.
On top of all that, there is always navigation, sonar, weather, tides, traffic, and depth contours to deal with. Oddly enough, thinking about intelligence failures becomes a little known aspect of commanding a nuclear submarine.
For example by 2016 China had about 750 warships focused only her coast and her historic domain of the South China Sea. Of the 750 warships about 70 were submarines. Some of these were Russian Kilo Class very quiet diesel electrics. Quite capable of sinking an aircraft carrier. China is producing her own advanced diesel electrics buying the best German diesel engines in the world. They could stay submerged thirty days, utterly silent. Then add to that about 150 North Korean warships, half of them diesel electric submarines. They could be deployed in a two day sail to the South China Sea. Then add 1000 or more mines, but only the Chinese know where they placed the mines. The mine is the most cost effective Naval weapon. One mine costs a few thousand bucks. One unlucky ship costs perhaps a billion dollars and 500 lives. My first command cost $4 billion and carries a crew of 130 men and women. It is almost unheard of to rescue anyone from a damaged and sunk submarine. The rescue drills are hard work. But they skate on a historic fantasy. Hope, even a tiny spec of it, does help crew moral.
Back to the Chinese Navy there appear to be another hundred or so "green fishing vessels" equipped to listen for my submarine and radio our location to other submarines and destroyers.
Little seems to be known about Chinese cruise missile torpedoes. We have cruise missiles that can travel hundreds of miles and then parachute over a submarine location. Then an independent sonar system hunts down and destroys the submarine.
Speaking of intelligence failure we have no idea if China has stolen this technology. As of this writing some Congressmen think the Spratley sand dune attack is one hundred miles from the Chinese coast. The Spratleys are 1000 miles off the Chinese coast. Along the Chinese coast are over 1000 cruise missiles. An unknown number are accurate enough to sink a surface ship over 1000 miles offshore.
Could the Chinese launch nine old and inaccurate missiles at an American carrier? Then wait until most of the anti-missile missiles had launched? Then launch the latest and most accurate missile that accelerates to 2000 mph when it gets within twenty miles of its target? Thus, a carrier or other high value target is hit as it fires too few and too late a salvo of anti-missile missiles?
We have sailed two carriers, the Stennis and the Eisenhower down through the South China Sea in early 2016. In a shooting war how long would they have lasted? Then most likely we would be sent in to clear out 1000 enemy vessels? With fewer than 100 missiles and torpedoes?
By the way firing any weapon from a submarine immediately eliminates the element of surprise. Could we outrun hundreds of surface ships? Planning for intelligence failures is part of my job.
As Putin invaded Crimea he warned NATO, "I have a nuclear surprise for you." What type of nuclear surprise could he be talking about?
HIGH POINT OF MY LIFE
It was the high point of my life as we idled out of Groton, Connecticut, with me as Captain of a Virginia Class Submarine, The USS Brooklyn, SSN799. One hundred thirty lives aboard, only three of us on the bridge could see daylight. All the rest of the crew were seeing fluorescent lights, breathing air conditioned air and staring at high resolution computer screens and instruments. Push button death. Push button surveillance. Push button night time. Push button dive to 800 feet. Push button scuttle the ship and live in a life raft. Push button incinerate a dozen targets anywhere on earth.
Historically America had developed nuclear tipped cruise missiles (TLAM-N) which a submarine such as a Virginia Class could launch. These nuclear Tomahawk cruise missiles were submarine launched. They could carry a 200 kiloton nuclear warhead 2,500 kilometers (1,553 miles). This was a cold war weapon designed to vastly complicate the Soviet Union's defense of Moscow, as the following map shows, a submarine in the Mediterranean or off the coasts of England, Norway, Sweden, or Finland could target Moscow. Moscow is Russia's largest city with a population of over 12 million. It is the most populous city in Europe. IF Russia ever touches a nuclear trigger, Moscow will no longer exist. However, Russia is twice the size of America, and she can spread out her soldiers over vast spaces. Spaces too vast to use nuclear weapons to defeat.
My first command submarine could launch twelve conventional Tomahawk cruise missiles at Moscow, from the English Channel. I only pray that any escalation of a Second Cold War does not lead to my Brooklyn carrying twelve TLAM-N's.
On March 20, 1992, the USS Grayling (SSN 646) collided with a Soviet (Russian) missile sub off the Russian coast. The collision occurred right smack in the middle of Russia's Northern Fleet training range. Nobody was hurt. But President Bill Clinton wondered if the Grayling's captain read newspapers. America was trying to build peaceful relations with the post Cold War nuclear superpower.
Even so, Bill Clinton was a big supporter of our sub fleet. He approved three new nuclear Seawolfs at 2.5 billion each to prevent the industrial base that builds subs from shriveling and dying altogether.
It was Bill Clinton who approved the plan to build a new class of attack submarine. A liberal Democrat launched the Virginia class attack submarines. These subs represent America's most lethal weapon. America had ninety eight subs at the end of the Cold War. This went down to sixty three in 1999, and the shrinking numbers keep going down. Remember China plus North Korea have over 130 subs focused along one tiny coastline.
Luckily, budget cuts and sequestration have not slowed the buildup of these Virginia class submarines. Currently a total of twenty are funded. There is no budget yet to replace the Ohio class "Boomer" submarines that quietly circle the earth with one mission. Destroy enemy cities and military bases over 5000 miles away from any Ohio class submarine using Trident missiles. In the fall of 2014, Russia launched two long range missiles to show off their submarine based weapons of mass destruction.
But she has one little problem, her stealth capabilities lack advanced sonar and lag way behind our NATO forces. Meaning in any real war scenario, every one of Russia's boomers would become target number one. Any land based missiles are already pre-targeted in both directions with about 3000 missiles in America aimed at 3000 missiles in Russia. As far as bombers go, Russia's long range bombers are a push button from ground to air and air to air missile destruction every moment they are airborne.
That leaves their "Boomers" as the greatest threat to the national security of America. So Bill Clinton gave birth to America's best weapon to seek and destroy every Russian (or Chinese) Boomer, and that is the vessel I command. My family lives in Colorado where the USS Colorado (SSN 778) represents the fourteenth Virginia Class menace sniffing around every potential enemy's home turf. With a nuclear tipped cruise missile I can reach over 1500 miles inland to destroy anything that is smaller than Mount Everest.
We can carry Navy SEALS. We can launch underwater drones to look for mines or do the steadfast job of all submarines, spy! My boat has no old fashion thru hull periscope. Instead we have a fiber optic mast with a digital video system with resolution clearer than the human eye.
We can provide Tomahawk missile conventional artillery support fifteen hundred miles away to ground troops like we did in Kosovo in 1999.
But as long as "The Bear Still Swims" the world's second most powerful Navy must be watched and watched and watched. As for the Chinese and North Korean Navies, they control a small coastal region in Asia and that's it. Any expansion beyond their coast would end poorly for them.
History has taught us that watching is a two way street. Throughout the Cold War Soviet diesel subs called Golf-class conducted regular patrols off America's Atlantic and Pacific coasts. Golf subs carry missiles that can target any city in America. With today's technology Russian subs could target Washington D.C. from Norway.
As a nuclear sub captain I am tasked with being a risk taker. That means I need to track any submarine in my deployment territory. The one that got away might take out Denver, just before Russia becomes a blazing wasteland. If that does happen, then China will simply walk across their borders and turn Russia into a Chinese gas station, without firing a shot.
It seems silly to think that Putin cannot read history books or even study Germany's thrust into her neighbor, Russia. Putin duels with the "West". NATO is the bad guy. Has he considered how many Frenchmen would want to move from Nice on the Mediterranean to Siberia? How many Floridians are just itching to move to freezing Moscow? Russia has twice the land mass of America, all intertwined with pot holes. You can't drink the water, and you wouldn't want to drink the wine.
Putin doesn't seem to get this. He seems asleep at the switch. By toying with a war with NATO, he is handing China what she needs most. More oil and more land for her expanding billion plus population. As the Russian Ruble flops, the Yuan grows. As the Russian population declines, China ends the one baby law. As the Russia economy shrinks into recession, China's economy grows to the world's largest! China lacks oil (and oil will dominate world energy consumption for another 100 years). Russia spills more oil than China guzzles.
So what does world history forecast will happen along the Russian/Chinese Borders? Will these bordering military powers exchange little Red Commy Booklets? Or will WW III really just be a Putin instigated limited nuclear exchange between NATO and Russia – preceding China's annexation of the world's largest gas station? See one opinion of Russia attached as Appendix A. The U.S. Navy published a report on the Russian Navy attached as Appendix B.
It is now 2018 as I write this tale of nuclear submarine combat. I am still in disbelief as to the Kremlin's blindness as they spent $50 billion on the Sochi Olympics – perhaps just to cover up the slaughter of one hundred civilians in nearby Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. And all this just to create a pretense to grab Crimea's undersea oil.
What I am learning from my part in this story is, "never underestimate your enemy." Nobody imagined a nuclear terror lying in wait a rowboat ride from our coast. But it happened this way.
Such is the agenda for a first time Captain of man's most potent weapon in world history. Even the most ferocious hurricanes, volcanoes, earthquakes cannot disturb our push button good night's sleep while on patrol.
Excerpted from "Russian Decepticon"
Copyright © 2017 Rick Martin.
Excerpted by permission of Trafford Publishing.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 Boyhood Dreams, 1,
Chapter 2 Submarine Schooling, 4,
Chapter 3 High Point of My Life, 7,
Chapter 4 -2015-, 21,
Chapter 5 Hindsight, 31,
Chapter 6 Russian Deception-Building Reeba, 41,
Chapter 7 Voyage Preparations and Shore Duty, 54,
Chapter 8 Action, 68,
Chapter 9 Blind Nuclear Missile, 73,
Chapter 10 Hot Pursuit, 79,
Chapter 11 Chinese Heaven, 89,
Chapter 12 Epitaph – Private Luxury Yacht Destroyed, 92,
Chapter 13 Captain Nikolay, 96,
Chapter 14 Epilogue — The Second Cold War, 99,
Chapter 15 Nikolay's Bad Dream of World War III, 101,