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Hostile Waters - The Death of Soviet Submarine K219

Hostile Waters - The Death of Soviet Submarine K219


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Published by laksmana

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Published by: laksmana on Mar 27, 2009
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you and your engineer are to be charged with negligence. I myself

believe your worst crime is in giving the Americans thirty nuclear

weapons. The maximum penalty for these crimes is twenty years hard

labor. Your questionable actions as the last man on board your ship

have given rise to an additional charge of sabotage. If that charge is

proven, you will both be court-martialed for treason against the state.

The penalty for that is death. Personally, I believe this charge is ac-

curate. You will both be sent back to Gadzhievo pending final deci-

sions." The general nodded, dismissing them from his office.

Britanov filed out, still numb. The black Volga was where they'd

left it. He got in, stiff as a man who'd half frozen.

Inside the layers of numbness, underneath the ice, he could still feel

the beat of a single, glowing truth: he'd done the right thing for his

men. He'd taken responsibility for them at Gadzhievo the day they

sailed for patrol. He'd done all in his power to bring them home again.

Fate had made him their commander. Now it was splitting them

apart. Perhaps for twenty years. Maybe for all eternity.

It would be five more months before he found out that his own

future, and that of Chief Engineer Krasilnikov, was in the hands of a

German boy even younger than the men of K-219: a student pilot

named Matthius Rust.

Everyone was afraid of making Moscow unhappy.

This is not just the tragedy behind our accident.

It's the tragedy behind nearly everything that's

wrong with Russia today.

Gennady Kapitulsty

The Reagan-Gorbachev summit in Reykjavik went on despite grum-

blings over the K-219 incident. Not everyone was happy about it. Many

believed the two leaders became too friendly and too willing to give

up everything in the name of peace. The total elimination of all nuclear

weapons was on the table, though aides to the two leaders quickly

backpedaled away from it.

Caspar Weinberger was sure that the Soviet leader was offering

worthless concessions in exchange for real cuts in the American nuclear

arsenal. His feelings were echoed on the opposite side of the negoti-

ating table.

The Soviet minister of defense, Marshal Sergei Sokolov, was against

anything that diminished the power and prestige of the Soviet Union.

A tank officer from the very old school, he had no use for politicians


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