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Project Azorian: The CIA and the Raising of the K-129
     

Project Azorian: The CIA and the Raising of the K-129

3.2 9
by Norman C. Polmar, Michael White
 

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Despite incredible political, military, and intelligence risks, and after six years of secret preparations, the CIA attempted to salvage the sunken Soviet ballistic missile submarine K-129 from the depths of the North Pacific Ocean in early August 1974. This audacious effort was carried out under the cover of an undersea mining operation sponsored by eccentric

Overview

Despite incredible political, military, and intelligence risks, and after six years of secret preparations, the CIA attempted to salvage the sunken Soviet ballistic missile submarine K-129 from the depths of the North Pacific Ocean in early August 1974. This audacious effort was carried out under the cover of an undersea mining operation sponsored by eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes. “Azorian”—incorrectly identified as Project Jennifer by the press— was the most ambitious ocean engineering endeavor ever attempted and can be compared to the 1969 moon landing for its level of technological achievement.

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.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781612510002
Publisher:
Naval Institute Press
Publication date:
12/07/2010
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
238
Sales rank:
358,839
File size:
7 MB

Meet the Author

Norman Polmar is an internationally known analyst, consultant, and author specializing in naval, aviation, and intelligence issues. Since June 2008 he has been the Senior Consultant for National Security Programs at Gryphon Technologies where he supports Navy ballistic missile defense, cyber operations, and shipbuilding programs. Until May 2008 he served as the senior policy advisor in the Center for Security Strategies & Operations (CSSO) within General Dynamics/Information Technology; he previously held that position with the Anteon and Techmatics firms prior to corporate buyouts.

From 1967 to 1977 Mr. Polmar was editor of the United States sections of JANE’S FIGHTING SHIPS , being completely responsible for almost one-third of that annual reference work. From 1982 to 1986 and from December 2002 until June 2008 he served as a member of the Secretary of the Navy's Research Advisory Committee (NRAC). He served as chairman of the NRAC panel established in 2005 to determine science and technology requirements for supporting the Navy and Marine Corps in the period 2015--2020. He also served on a sub-panel of the Defense Science Board’s study of transition to and from hostilities (2004) and was a member of a DARPA advisory panel looking at future warfare requirements (2007).

He served as the Ramsey Fellow at the National Air and Space Museum in 1998-1999. His awards include Outstanding Journalism Graduate (Sigma Delta Chi, 1965); Alfred Thayer Mahan Award for Literary Achievement (Navy League, 1976); Author Award of Merit (Naval Institute, 1986); Rear Admiral Ernest M. Eller Prize (U.S. Naval History Center, 1996), shared with Thomas B. Allen; Admiral Arthur W. Radford Award (Naval Aviation Museum Foundation, 2004); and Grover Award (Naval Research Advisory Committee, 2008). He lives in Alexandria, VA

Michael White:
Michael White has worked in film, television and advertising industries for over 34 years. His career in special and visual effects began in 1976 at Pinewood Studios, on Superman the Movie. During the following years he worked his way up to become a senior technician and later completed work on some 16 international films.

In 1981 he went to work for Bernd Eichinger on the ‘Neverending Story” at Bavaria Studios in Germany. This move brought about a lifestyle change that better suited his ambitions in life at that time. After completing Wolfgang Petersons “Enemy Mine”also at Bavaria and “Lionhear” for Franklyn J.Schaffler in 1986, he became a highly respected special effects technician in Germany and decided to stay in Munich and work the up and coming German independent TV advertising market. During this time as special effects supervisor and consultant, he completed work with most of the top film productions in Germany. Soon the opportunity to move into directing presented itself in early 1988. Over the next few years his career expanded into directing over eighty commercials for television and cinema in Germany, Austria and other parts of Europe. In 1990 he moved to Vienna as a regular working place and home. Since his time there he has used it as a base to work around Europe as a director of well over fifty commercials and some twenty corporate films.

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