Sunday, April 17, 2022

Could The Moskva Have Been Carrying Nuclear Weapons? Possibly.


Could The Moskva Have Been Carrying Nuclear Weapons? Possibly.

Copyright 17 April 2022 by Michael H. Maggelet

  The recent sinking of the Russian Federation Navy flagship Moskva (formerly the “Slava”, i.e. Glory in Russian) has brought concerns by some in the media that the warship may have been carrying nuclear weapons.

  The possibility exists that the ship may have been carrying nuclear weapons, however there are no public announcements made by NATO countries, which likely have surveyed the area of Moskva’s sinking in the Black Sea.

  Aerial sniffer aircraft, such as the USAF WC-135W, are equipped to monitor the atmosphere for radionuclides, and media claims of Turkish and Romanian rescue ships rescuing at least 50 Russian naval personnel have yet to be verified. Losses on the Moskva may number in the hundreds. 

  At this time, there is no evidence that the Moskva used her defensive systems (flares, chaff) and anti-aircraft missiles and guns. Also, note that apparently two missiles hit the ship; more than two may have been fired in order to overwhelm defenses (along with other measures). 

Project 1164 "Atlant" and NATO "Slava" class, now known as the "Moskva" class (

  The location of the attack was near 45 deg 10 min N, 30 deg 55 min E. At the time of this writing, several Russian ships were in the vicinity of the sinking (as reported by naval blogger H.I. Sutton). The depth of the sinking is around 50 meters (164 feet). 

  It should be noted that US and NATO surface vessels do not carry nuclear weapons, while the Russian Federation still retains at least 1800 tactical nuclear weapons in its arsenal.

  Given the fact the Moskva was heavily armed with sixteen liquid fueled surface to surface missiles, sixty-four surface to air missiles, RPK-6 anti-submarine rockets, dozens of RBU-6000 anti-submarine rockets, and possibly depth bombs (not to mention CIWS and cannon), a hull penetrating hit by ordnance such as the R-360 Neptune with a 330 pound warhead could have been initially catastrophic.

  Additionally, Russian nuclear weapons are undoubtably one point safe, meaning a one point detonation of the warhead high explosive will not produce a nuclear yield.

  The Moskva could carry the following Russian nuclear weapon systems-

P-1000 Vulkan (SS-N-12 Sandbox)- 350 Kt.

RPK-6 Vodopod (SS-N-16 Stallion)- 200 Kt.

Nuclear depth bombs for the Ka-27 helicopter.

(Source for ordnance-

  Attacks on warships using artillery and iron bombs were not uncommon during the Cold War era. During the Viet Nam war, several US warships were hit by North Vietnamese MiG-17s and shore artillery batteries, at some times leading to extensive damage and fatalities.

  One case was the USS Ozbourn (DD-846), patrolling off the DMZ Viet Nam on 25 March 1967. The ship was stationary in the fog, and as morning light highlighted the ships mast, North Vietnamese shore batteries opened fire hitting the ship twice. At least one round hit the ASROC storage compartment, seriously damaging several conventional and nuclear armed ASROCs.

The most serious nuclear weapons accidents to date at sea include the loss of the USS Scorpion in 1968, loss of the Soviet submarine K-129 in 1968, K-8 submarine in 1970, K-219 in 1986, and K-278 in 1989. These accidents are covered in detail in "Broken Arrow, Volume II" by yours truly and the late James C. Oskins.

Friday, April 1, 2022

Air Force to Change Nuclear Weapons Terms and Glossary

Air Force to Change Nuclear Weapons Terms and Glossary
(1 April 2022, Albuquerque, NM).

  In keeping with other branches of the US military, the Air Force recently announced changes to the nomenclature for nuclear weapons materials and components.
  “This is a practice that is long overdue, and we need change” stated Colonel Rike Moades, noting that in the early days of the nuclear weapons field, weapon components were known by their drawing number and a long name. For instance, the H-12 Handtruck, first developed and used in 1950 with the Mark 4 bomb as the “Cartridge Dolly”, continues to be used with the B83 bomb.
“It's probably a good idea to change uniforms, rank insignia, awards and decorations, etc., well, just because”. Moades cited the exemplary leadership of retired Air Force general Merrill McPeak for his redesign of the US Air Force “dress blues”, changes to regulations as “instructions”, and US Army general Eric Shinseki's brave decision to make every soldier “elite” with black berets. Moades also noted that such a move will also likely confuse adversary nations and anti-nuclear groups, who along with active duty and retired airmen, can't figure out how munitions squadrons fall under "logistics".
  As an example, the B61 bomb would be renamed the AGM-61 BWPABFABMC, or “Bomb Which Produces A Big Fireball And Big Mushroom Cloud”.

  Some components and terms would remain the same, since no one can figure out the history of them anyway, and outsiders are unaware of certain terms, Moades stated. This includes the terms “Group X Kit”, “interlocking slide fastener”, “zipper”, and “fuze”.

  Technical orders would also undergo a fundamental change, combining all the service branch nomenclature into one TO. For example, TP-35-51 would not be referred to as the “Bible” of the 2W2/463 career field, but the “Codex Maximus” and TMSWOPTO 35-51.
  Weapons related tech orders would also undergo a significant change, being referred to as “The Book of Armaments” technical series.

    AGM-61 and AGM-83 BWPABFABMC test units are secured to a flatbed trailer under new recently approved castoring and tiedown procedures (Photo SNL). 

Germany To Start Rationing Beer

 Germany To Start Rationing Beer

(Berlin, 1 April 2022)- German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has stated that German breweries are overwhelmed by the increased arrival of US ("Ami") and other NATO military personnel to help defend NATO. 
  Starting next week, German citizens will have to obtain ration cards to buy beer produced in German breweries, and will be limited to purchasing only ten cases a month. However, they have the option of consuming foreign beers deemed not on par with German beer, such as Stella Artois.  
 There would be a penalty however, as the Polizei have been given authority to ticket anyone consuming American beer such as Budweiser, Miller, and Coors off US bases
and posts, and imprison those who drink “offensive” wine coolers and “hard seltzer's” 
such as White Claw in violation of the 1516 “Rheinheitsgebot”.

                  League of German Brewers protest pending legislation to ration beer. 

Canadian Forces will rely on old standby's.