Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Open Source Questions of the Week: 29 JUN 16


In a temporary departure from our Questions of the Week, which have related almost entirely to naval submarines, this edition's quizzes the vital, underlying concept called OSINT (open source intelli-gence):
"Open-source intelligence under one name or another has been around for hundreds of years. The significance today of OSINT in the USA is the conflict between military, government, and the private sector as to how the bulk of intelligence should be obtained. With the advent of instant communications and rapid information transfer, a great deal of actionable and predictive intelligence can now be obtained from public, unclassified sources." - Wikipedia, open source intelligence

OSINT Questions of the Week

1 -  Whose eponymous work, often found in the wardrooms of commissioned U.S. submarines (for example) has one author become renowned for in the context of open source intelligence (OSINT) (author's name and volume's title)?

2 -  When did the author referenced above first publish his naval version of such works?

3 -  What was the late author's nationality?

4 -  In what science fiction novel did this author decribe a 'matter transmitter' for space travel (title and year of publication).

5 -  What Medical Doctor and university professor currently currates a digital library of world naval operational news from open source intelligence (name, specialty and university where tenured)?

6 -  What is the name of the web address and name of the digital library referenced in 5-?

Below are two examples of photographic open source submarine history from other OSINT sources. One taken before a tragedy, the other after a different tragedy.

7 - Identify the two subs and describe the fates of those crew members shown.


Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Strange UK Submarine News and Quote of the Month (28 JUN 16)


Quote of the Month

“There will be no discussion on joint sovereignty – the UK Government has made that clear.”  - source

BREXIT BACKGROUNDThe latest incident comes as tensions heighten around the UK-controlled peninsula after a series of aggressive acts by Spain that may be linked to Gibraltar's self-determination.  HISTORICAL:  Gibraltar's territory was ceded to Britain in the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht. For recent decades, however, Spain has made clear that it wants Gibraltar back.  BREXIT BACKGROUND


Navy officer denies groping woman on nuclear submarine

A ROYAL Navy lieutenant groped a female colleague's breast while giving a tour of a Trident nuclear submarine to sea cadets, a court martial heard yesterday. ...
"They were in a passageway together having a conversation about what they were doing that evening and during that time, Purdue reached out and touched her breast." The alleged victim told the hearing: "He groped my right breast. My initial reaction was, 'What the f*** are you doing?'

In his own defense, Lieutenant Basil Purdue, 26,  told the court: "She is making things up in the knowledge that it could damage my career, she is lying. 

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Strange Submarine News and Quote of the Week (14 JUN 16)

- 1 -
Recall Sweden's 2014 Russian submarine hunt:  BBC's 60 second video Review

Molten Eagle speculation had remained It is more likely, in our experience, that a much needed Swedish Military training excercise, a PR recruiting effort, or a combination of both, have been conducted with renewed world attention.      and now we learn...

Today's [June 13, 2016] NEWS UPDATE indicates we appear to have been correct all along:
"A sonar signature, which Swedish military claimed to be crucial evidence of a foreign submarine’s presence near Stockholm during the 2014 hunt, came from a 'Swedish object,' the country’s defense minister has admitted.

Peter Hultqvist would not go into details about the source of the signal, but said the military reconsidered their assessment of its nature in September 2015, he told Sveriges Radio."
{The Sveriges Radio AB Swedish Language article is consistent}

- 2 -
Sub-Ocean Geophysical Catastrophe (Pick the more likely story)   
February 13, 2016 - CNN  | The quake-maker you've never heard of: Cascadia
  • The Cascadia is capable of delivering a 9.0-magnitude quake. The fault can deliver a quake with 30 times more energy than the more famous San Andreas 
  • The Cascadia runs from British Columbia's Vancouver Island California's Cape Mendocino
  • "...and then it generates a tsunami at the same time, which the side-by-side motion of the San Andreas can't do." - Prof. Chris Goldfinger, Oregon State University.

June 13, 2016 - PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) | Robot submarine streams live from ocean off Oregon coast
A robot submarine is roaming around the ocean floor off the Oregon Coast in an effort to detect any geological activity underground, and researchers are offering a live stream of the underwater view.  The mission off the Pacific Northwest is intended to find “methane seeps,” where the natural greenhouse gas is released from the ocean floor along the Cascadia subduction.

Another Russian exploration to locate ideal detonation sites to trigger earthquakes, or innocent scientific curiosity? Hint: See research efforts (Dr. Robert Ballard and the Corps of Exploration)   

- 3 - 
June 2016 |  GPS Doesn't Work Underwater
So the U.S. Navy is developing a new kind of system—built specifically for drone submarines.

POSYDON wants to install acoustic speakers in buoys throughout the ocean, where they will broadcast the time like GPS satellites. “They will be heard across very, very wide swaths of ocean,” he told me. “And now our underwater vehicles will be able to listen to those acoustic signals and measure the time difference of arrivals of each one of them.”

There’s one big problem. GPS radio signals are electromagnetic waves, so they move at the speed of light—always, through any atmospheric medium. This makes it extremely straightforward to back-compute the location of a beacon from its signal.  

M.E. Comment: Would not laser emissions from orbiting satellites provide faster, broader coverage?  

- 4 -
May 18, 2016 - Military Times | CHEYENNE, Wyo. Tribute to a Navy vet served on captured German WWII sub

Toward the war's end, one of these U-boats, U-858, was sent to wreak havoc along the east coast of the United States. But two weeks after Hitler's suicide, on May 14, 1945, U-858 became the first Nazi submarine to surrender to U.S. forces.

It's a boat that Chuck Kline remembers well. That's because, for nine months after its surrender, Kline served aboard U-858.

Kline, now 93, is one of a dwindling number of American sailors who served aboard submarines during World War II, and the last to come from Wyoming. (

Submarines are always silent and strange.

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Tuesday, June 07, 2016

New Submarine Brainteasers (06 JUN 16)

Category: Latest Intrigue ...

The Background from Submarine Quotes

"Once again, an effective, skilled, and technologically advanced Russian submarine force is challenging us. Russian submarines are prowling the Atlantic, testing our defenses, confronting our command of the seas, and preparing the complex underwater battlespace to give them an edge in any future conflict. Not only have Russia’s actions and capabilities increased in alarming and confrontational ways, its national-security policy is aimed at challenging the United States and its NATO allies and partners.  ... For example, the new Russian national security-strategy depicts the United States and NATO as threats to Russian security and accuses us of applying “political, economic, military, and information-related pressure” on Russia. 6 Thus, not only is Russia pursuing advanced military capabilities (especially in the underwater domain) that enable it to be a credible threat to us, it is now boldly saying that it intends to act as one. "  - Vice Admiral James G. Foggo, III and Alarik Fritz,  "The Fourth Battle of the Atlantic",  Proceedings magazine - June 2016.

"Nuclear submarines should not be allowed to use suburban ports as supply bases. There is always a potential risk associated with nuclear-powered vessels. Fire and terrorist attacks are examples of events that could trigger a nuclear accident. A military base would provide greater protection against such occasions compared to a civil port [in densely populated areas]."  - Nils Bøhmer of Bellona told news outlet Nordlys.

And Three Versions

[all color and underscoring emphasis mine] 
- 1 - 
"Last week, a US nuclear submarine emerged off Norway's coast in Tromsø supposedly for changing crews, which somehow added fuel to the fire. ...
Spokesperson Brynjar Stordal of the Joint Headquarters confirmed the submarine had the so-called administrative assignment of swapping crews and carrying out a number of tasks before going out to sea, yet refused to specify the type of the submarine. No further indication was given, except for the fact that it was American and had Norfolk as its homeport." - Sputnik International, 06 June 2015 
[Note: Sputnik is one of Russia's government-controlled news outlets geared towards non-Russian audiences. Sputnik has been described as propagandist.] 
- 2 - 
"The US military wants to use a new harbour at Tønsnes near Tromsø for its nuclear submarines on patrol in Arctic waters. Norwegian military officials seem keen to accommodate their powerful American allies, but local residents are skeptical and state radiation authorities must evaluate whether such vessels will be welcome."  
and, ... 
“I would say that the presence of our allies is a central dimension within Norwegian security and defense policy,” Regina Alexandrova, a Bulgarian-born Member of Parliament for the Conservative Party, told NRK. She represents Troms County and sits on the parliament’s foreign and defense policy committee. “We have exercises and train with our allies and often have visits from allied forces,” Alexandrova added. “Their presence in Northern Norway is both legitimate and desired from our side.” - Nuclear sub berthings meet skepticism, Views and News from Norway, May 12, 2016.

- 3 - 
"The navy’s submarine base infrastructure had included the Olavsvern facility near Tromsø in Northern Norway. This base, which cost US$500 million to construct and fit-out, was decommissioned in 2009.

The Olavsvern facility, which contains tunnels burrowed in to mountainside rock, is currently leased to research institutes funded by Russia and closely connected to the oil company Gazprom. [all color and underscoring emphasis mine]

The base at Olavsvern was used extensively by US and British nuclear powered attack submarines patrolling Arctic waters during the Cold War. The facility was also used by NATO submarine commanders to rest crews and carry out repairs. - The navy’s submarine base infrastructure had included the Olavsvern facility near Tromsø in Northern Norway. This base, which cost US$500 million to construct and fit-out, was decommissioned in 2009.
  - Gerard O’Dwyer, Norway Reviewing Submarine Base Infrastructure, Capacity; Defense News, 19  May 2016.

Some Obvious Questions 
  • Which LA-class U.S. sub "homeported in Norfolk" could it have been "last week"? ANS: If report is true, one of these boats perhaps.
  • What was the actual nature of the alleged "swapping crews and carrying out a number of tasks"?  ANS: Likely some Silent and Strange assignment unless an actual medical emergency, but to date only VA-class attack subs have been publicly assigned female crew members, and medical problems among male submariners have remained very rare.
  • Where "off Norway's coast and nearTromso?  ANS: Tønsnes appears likely.
Submarines are always silent and strange.

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