In the worst reboot of The Hunt For Red October we’ve ever heard, Russia has lost a secretive nuclear-powered cruise missile at sea during a failed test in the last several months, CNBC reports.
Citing an unnamed U.S. intelligence official, CNBC reports that that Russian military lost one of the four cruise missiles used during tests conducted over the Barents Sea between last November and February, all of which ended in failure.
The status of the missile and its nuclear fuel is unknown, and its disappearance has reportedly triggered an an all-out search in the Barents Sea north of Scandinavia by Russian military personnel. According to CNBC, the four test flights ranged from five miles to 22 miles.
A satellite image of the Barents Sea, featuring an image of the Russian cruise missile and a WC-135.NASA
While it’s currently unclear which launch resulted in the lost missile, U.S. Air Force nuclear-sniffing WC-135 ‘Constant Phoenix’ aircraft were active in the Barents Sea and Baltic Sea from March to August of this year, with a Russian fighter intercepting one of the aircraft over the Baltic Sea on August 8th.
This missile, one of many doomsday devices touted by Russian President Vladimir Putin's government during Moscow’s last showcase of new military capabilities, is purportedly capable of loitering as an unmanned second-strike platform that can remain in the air for an extended period of time over a virtually unlimited range.
Obviously, the cruise missile could cause an environmental catastrophe if the reactor is breached. But besides the stupidity of losing a bunch of nuclear material in the middle of the open ocean, the incident reveals the short-sighted nature of a nuclear-powered cruise missiles at all: they cause environmental devastation, they’re horribly expensive, and decommissioning them is virtual nightmare. It makes little sense for Russia to even test the damn things since the Ministry of Defense has such an effective nuclear deterrent in place already.
Frankly, a nuclear-powered cruise missile is a 1950s wet dream that goes against all logic in a world with hundreds of ICBMs tipped with multiple independently-targetable reentry vehicles, all of which can kill a city. Maybe we don’t need to nuke the whales, too?
GENEVA/DUBAI (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump said he was prepared to take military action to stop Tehran from getting a nuclear bomb but left open whether he would back the use of force to protect Gulf oil supplies that Washington fears may be under threat by Iran.
Worries about a confrontation between Iran and the United States have mounted since attacks last week on two oil tankers near the strategic Strait of Hormuz shipping lane at the entrance to the Gulf. Washington blamed long-time foe Iran for the incidents.
Tehran denies responsibility but the attacks, and similar ones in May, have further soured relations that have plummeted since Trump pulled the United States out of a landmark international nuclear deal with Iran in May 2018.
Trump has restored and extended U.S. economic sanctions on Iran. That has forced countries around the world to boycott Iranian oil or face sanctions of their own.
But in an interview with Time magazine, Trump, striking a different tone from some Republican lawmakers who have urged a military approach to Iran, said last week's tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman had only a "very minor" impact so far.
Asked if he would consider military action to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons or to ensure the free flow of oil through the Gulf, Trump said: "I would certainly go over nuclear weapons and I would keep the other a question mark."
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz said Tuesday he is appalled by a state DFL Party staff member's tweet referring to the recently-launched USS Minneapolis-Saint Paul as a "murder boat."
"Certainly, the disrespect shown is beyond the pale," said Walz, who served in the Army National Guard.
William Davis, who has been the DFL Party's research director and deputy communications director, made the controversial comment in response to a tweet about the launch of a new Navy combat ship in Wisconsin: "But actually, I think it's gross they're using the name of our fine cities for a murder boat," Davis wrote on Twitter over the weekend.
TAMPA — Minutes before the Acting Secretary of Defense withdrew Tuesday from his confirmation process, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke at MacDill Air Force Base about the need to coordinate "diplomatic and defense efforts'' to address rising tensions with Iran.
Pompeo, who arrived in Tampa on Monday, met with Marine Gen. Kenneth McKenzie Jr. and Army Gen. Richard Clarke, commanders of U.S. Central Command and U.S. Special Operations Command respectively, to align the Government's efforts in the Middle East, according to Central Command.
NAVAL BASE SAN DIEGO — The trial of Navy SEAL Chief Eddie Gallagher officially kicked off on Tuesday with the completion of jury selection, opening statements, and witness testimony indicating that drinking alcohol on the front lines of Mosul, Iraq in 2017 seemed to be a common occurrence for members of SEAL Team 7 Alpha Platoon.
Government prosecutors characterized Gallagher as a knife-wielding murderer who not only killed a wounded ISIS fighter but shot indiscriminately at innocent civilians, while the defense argued that those allegations were falsehoods spread by Gallagher's angry subordinates, with attorney Tim Parlatore telling the jury that "this trial is not about murder. It's about mutiny."