14 sailors killed in fire aboard Russian navy deep-sea submersible
July 2, 2019
Fire broke out on one of the Russian navy’s deep-sea research submersibles, and toxic fumes from the blaze killed 14 sailors aboard, Russia’s Defense Ministry said Tuesday, although it released few details about the disaster or the vessel involved.
The Defense Ministry did not say how many sailors were aboard the vessel during Monday’s fire, whether there were any survivors or if it was submerged at the time. But Russian media reported it was the country’s most secret submersible, adesigned for sensitive missions at great depths.
Some Russian media said the vessel was an AS-12 nuclear-powered sub, however, there has been no official confirmation, BBC News reported. The vessel is now at Severomorsk, the main base of the Russian Northern Fleet.
Mike Pence Cancels a Trip to New Hampshire, and a Mystery Ensues
July 2, 2019
Within the Trump administration, Vice President Mike Pence is known as a port of calm and stability amid the churn of chaos. So on Tuesday, when he abruptly abandoned a planned trip to New Hampshire after he had already boarded Air Force Two at Joint Base Andrews in suburban Maryland, it raised immediate questions.
It is rare that something causes a vice president to abandon a publicized trip once aboard a plane. Mr. Pence’s aides said that there was no national security emergency or personal health issue that prompted the change. They said that he had boarded the plane but that it never took off. They would not say much else.
“Something came up that required the @VP to remain in Washington, DC. It’s no cause for alarm. He looks forward to rescheduling the trip to New Hampshire very soon,” wrote Mr. Pence’s press secretary, Alyssa Farah, on Twitter.
With little information to go on, theories abounded on Twitter. Mr. Pence might have been facing a national security emergency and been pulled back, people speculated. Or maybe there was a political drama taking place, with Mr. Trump summoning his second in command.
All-clear given at Pease National Guard Base (Portsmouth, NH) after lockdown issued
July 2, 2019
PEASE AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE —
Pease Air National Guard Base (12 miles from Portsmouth Navy Shipyard–base to nuclear submarines) was put on lockdown Tuesday after several people reported hearing gunshots, but officials said no evidence of a shooting was found.
The facility was locked down for about an hour after five people inside Building 100, the Pease headquarters, reported hearing gunshots about 11:30 a.m. The base treated the incident as an active shooter scenario.
>> Raw video: Pease officials give update on lockdown
“Shortly thereafter, the base went into lockdown,” Col. John Pogorek said. “And as we train for, our security forces responded to the building.”
Several state and local law enforcement agencies also responded to the base.
“This building, along with three others, were swept inside and out,” Pogorek said. There was no evidence found of any gunfire, and luckily, no injuries were reported.”
Officials issued an alert for a red Honda after the reports were made, but the driver of that vehicle was cleared.
“We did have a person of interest that we were looking into,” said Newington Police Chief Michael Bilodeau.
U.S. Navy Ballistic Missile Submarine USS Alaska Arrives at HMNB Clyde, Scotland
July 3, 2019
The U.S. Navy Ohio-class ballistic-missile submarine, USS Alaska (SSBN 732) arrived at the Royal Navy base of HMNB Clyde in Scotland for a port visit, on July 2.
“The port visit strengthens cooperation between the United States and United Kingdom, and demonstrates U.S. capability, flexibility, and continuing commitment to NATO allies.”, said a statement by U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM).
USS Alaska has been in commission with the U.S. Navy since 1986 and is capable of carrying up to 20 UGM-133A Trident II (Trident D5) submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM) with multiple nuclear warheads. The boat is one of five ballistic-missile submarines stationed at the Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay in Georgia.
Her Majesty’s Naval Base Clyde (HMNB Clyde; also HMS Neptune) primarily sited at Faslane is one of three operating bases of the Royal Navy in the UK (the others being HMNB Devonport and HMNB Portsmouth). It is the home for Navy’s Vanguard-class ballistic missile submarines armed with Trident missiles, the Royal Navy analogous to U.S. Navy Ohio-class submarines.
The mission of the SSBN force is strategic deterrence, which is the act of deterring a nuclear attack with effective nuclear deterrent force. SSBNs serve as an undetectable launch platform for submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs). They are considered the most survivable leg of the strategic deterrent triad; the other legs being long-range manned aircraft armed with nuclear bombs and land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs).