In pulling together posts in this series, I found a treasure trove of photos on Flickr by Greg Goebel. He has a photo album of Guided Missiles. He has accumulated views of a large number of air-to-air, surface-to-air, and ground-to-ground missiles.
Some articles I’ve bookmarked recently provide some background on nuclear weaponry: the B-52 no longer carries gravity nukes; recap of the capabilities of countries with sea-launched nukes, and losing the nuclear launch codes.
A 2019 update to technical document for strategic bombers says that the B-52H is no longer authorized to carry gravity nuclear bombs. The only weapon it is allowed to carry is the AGM-86B Air Launched Cruise Missile with a W80-1 warhead. The only nuclear loads for the B-2A are the B61-7 and B83-1 gravity bombs, which previously were authorized for the B-52H.
A 1983 deserter from the U.S. Air Force was arrested in 2018 and has now been tried and sentenced.
I was advised today by the Air Force Office of Special Investigation that the now-former officer has been tried and dismissed from the service. I’m working to find out the results of his trial and his current status. As more details are learned, updates will be posted.
Back in July 1983, while the Cold War was still running, USAF Captain William Howard Hughes Jr. deserted after returning to Albuquerque from a TDY in Europe. He did not report to his duty station on August 1, 1983.
He was last seen making 19 withdraws from his bank account totaling $28,500. That may have been around a year’s gross salary at the time. Would have allowed him to run and hide for a while as he worked on his new identity. His car was abandoned at the Albuquerque airport.
In case I ever want to make reference to such things, I now can cite an article that describes a guess at the nuclear launch protocols in place for the United States. Article also has speculation as to timing for each phase of the sequence.
Someday I may want to cite an unclassified source, so here it is:
IS has posted videos of multiple uses of the drones to drop explosives. The frequency of offensive use of the drones is high enough that Iraqi troops must scan the scansky for drones and take cover when one is spotted.
Captured documents indicate IS is doing research to develop new drones and modify off-the-shelf versions.
This is a significant step up from my previous discussion of ISIS’ drone usage. On January 30, I mentioned:
I’ve been wanting to put some data on nuclear weapons in print (Yeah, in print isn’t correct, but in pixels just doesn’t sound right).
That way if I want to make reference to some of this info in the future I can point to an unclassified, unverified source for that information. Somewhere in the back of my brain I might remember something I was told on the record so I want to have something in print I can point to instead.
Also, found an article I found disturbing, yet of interest. First the disturbing article:
2/6/16 – The Economist – What lurks beneath– India is hoping to officially commission its first SSBM (a nuclear sub carrying missiles, or SSBN) this week. China reportedly has 4 second-generation SSBNs.
Both countries are trying to dominate their nearby ocean to provide safe operating space for their SSBNs. Article says both their boomers are noisy. That means for the moment they are easy to find.
Just to ponder. Number of SSBNs:
4 – China
1 – India
Article has a graph showing the estimated number of nukes held by India, Pakistan, and China. My interpolation of the graph, rounded to nearest 5s: