Indian Navy Submarine Blast: Russia Attributes Accident to Lax Safety Standards, Will Assist India in Probe

A team of Russian experts will assist India in an investigation into the deadly explosions and fire on Aug. 14 that sunk an Indian navy submarine and killed all 18 sailors on board, the Russian government said on Friday, as the erstwhile superpower seeks to defend its reputation as a key worldwide supplier of military hardware.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said Russian experts did not believe technical failure caused the accident aboard the vessel, which was originally built and recently upgraded in Russia, adding that their initial suspicions pointed toward lax technical safety standards, Russia’s RIA Novosti news agency reported. The accident on board the submarine occurred when it was berthed at the vessel’s home port in the western Indian city of Mumbai.

“I have instructed the United Shipbuilding Corporation to send more specialists in agreement with the Indian side, to take part in the investigation of the tragedy and to provide all assistance necessary to our Indian friends,” Rogozin, who oversees the Russian defense industry, was quoted as saying by RIA Novosti.

“The initial information … is that the explosion occurred in the compartment where the batteries were charging," he said. “This is the most dangerous work, which is not so much to do with the makers of these batteries, but with technical safety measures, which must be at the highest level. So the first suspicions of our experts are about questions of technical safety standards. We aren’t blaming the equipment yet,” he added.

The explosion on board INS Sindhurakshak, a diesel-electric submarine, occurred three months after India’s defense ministry spent about $80 million to upgrade the vessel in Russia, and has been called the worst peacetime disaster in the history of the Indian navy.

India’s Chief of Naval Staff Admiral D. K. Joshi, on Thursday, said that the vessel’s batteries were recharged three days before the accident, and that the navy did not suspect that an initial minor explosion in the vessel’s torpedo chamber, which triggered a bigger blast and a fire due to the presence of ammunition, was caused by sparks emitted during routine recharging of batteries.

The navy chief said a team of experts is trying to determine why both manual and automatic alarm systems, which were supposed to alert the crew during emergencies, failed to go off.

Divers, searching for the bodies of the 18 sailors who were on board the vessel at the time of the tragedy, have recovered six bodies so far, Press Trust of India reported, citing naval sources.

A defense official told Indian newspaper DNA that divers found two bodies in the second compartment of the submarine and four from the third, adding that the rescue operation is under way in the fifth and sixth compartments. Chances of recovering more bodies appeared slim, the report said, citing a navy official.

The Indian navy may seek assistance from a Singapore-based company to lift the submarine, which remains submerged in waters near the naval dockyard in Mumbai, DNA reported.

Submarine Veteran Returns to His Roots - WWII-Era Veteran Tours USS Olympia (SSN-717) at Pearl Harbor

When Eugene Kurtz toured the Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine USS Olympia (SSN-717) last week, it had been over 65 years since he last stepped onboard a submarine in Pearl Harbor.

The last time, Kurtz, 85, was on board a Navy submarine, he was a young Sailor aboard USS Sterlet (SS-392) where he served as an electronics technician from 1946-1948.

But according to Kurtz, while a lot has changed in 65 years, a lot is still the same. "The ship is a lot bigger but still the quarters are still very tight," he said. "The Sterlet had only one level while the Olympia has three but still the passageways are tight and the living spaces are about the same size."

He also commented that the biggest difference is the advancement of technology, saying that ".everything is controlled by electronics and computers now."

Kurtz was born Oct. 2, 1928 in Shamokin, Pa., a little coal mining town in Central Pennsylvania. He joined the Navy as a 5' 3", 119-pound recruit right out of high school.

"The recruiter told me to eat a couple of pounds of bananas before boot camp because the minimum weight requirement was 120 pounds," he recalled.

He made it into boot camp and his life was forever changed. Before joining the Navy, the farthest that he had travelled was Philadelphia, Pa., 150 miles away. While onboard Sterlet, he travelled the Western Pacific making port calls to Brisbane, Australia; Okinawa, Sasebo, and Yokosuka, Japan; and Guam.

One of his most memorable experiences was becoming a "Shellback" after crossing the equator. "They had a lot of charges against me," he fondly recalled.

He also remembers sliding down the ladder when standing lookout just before the ship was going to dive, and how good the food on board was.

"The food was great, a lot of vitamins and steak, and I grew about four inches and gained about 30 pounds," he said.

But Kurtz also recalls being the most scared when Sterlet dove down to 500 ft. (400 ft was test depth) and having water spray out of several joints.

But most of all he remembers his fellow submariners and shipmates. "We were a close-knit group," he said. "We had to share the same rack - while we were on watch someone else would use your bunk. As you know there was not much space."

After the Navy, Kurtz entered DeForest Training School (now DeVry University) in Chicago Ill., where he stayed until he retired a few years ago.

"I really appreciate that the Navy led me on my electronics career," he said. "The seed was planted when I was in the Navy" he said. "If I did not join the Navy I probably would have stayed in Shamokin and been a coal miner."

Kurtz praised Olympia and her crew and thanked them for "bringing back a lot of memories. "I want to thank the USS Olympia, the Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Michael Boone and Chief of the Boat, Master Chief Machinist Mate (SS) Richard Salisbury," he said. "They took the time and made me feel like a very important person and I enjoyed the tour, they covered it very well."

Navy's Newest Attack Submarine Shows Its Capabilities

ABOARD USS MINNESOTA -- In a firm, confident voice, the pilot, joystick in hand, announces: "Last man down, hatch secure. Prepare to dive."

Minutes later, the USS Minnesota, the Navy's newest attack submarine, glides 550 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean, about 50 miles off Port Canaveral, Fla., showcasing some of its capabilities.

The USS Minnesota, scheduled for commissioning Sept. 7 in Norfolk, Va., is the Navy's 10th Virginia-class attack submarine.

At a speed of 24 knots, a little more than 27 mph, the submarine makes a fast turn to the right, then to the left while those on board not accustomed to the maneuver hold on.

"That was our high-speed turn," said Cmdr. John Fancher, the commanding officer of the submarine. "The Virginia class is very stable."

Construction on the USS Minnesota began in February 2008, and the ship was delivered 11 months ahead of its scheduled delivery date of June 2014.

"Hold on," Fancher said as the nuclear-powered submarine dove from 200 feet to 750 feet and back up, first at 20 degrees, then at 27 degrees. Some of the submariners on board compensated by leaning into the angle of the deck below their feet.

At 750 feet, he orders that the ship glide back up to 200 feet on automatic. "We're going to let the computer take us back up to 200 feet," Fancher said. "We'll see what angle it takes us."

The pilot punches several buttons on one of the large video screens and takes his hand off the joystick that resembles ones used for video games. The submarine climbs back at a 20 degree angle.

Fancher, a Navy veteran of more than 20 years, is usually near the pilot while in the control room. From that position, he can see over the shoulders of the men monitoring some 40 screens showing advanced electronics, sonar, GPS, depth, speed and an array of graphics and other information. The area is lighted by little more than the glow from the screens filled with charts, numbers and symbols, most of which are unintelligible to visitors.

A view from the photonics mast — the 21st century equivalent of a periscope — that scans the surroundings before and after surfacing can be seen on a large screen.

When Fancher is not giving the step-by-step commands, duty officers — most younger than 30 — monitor information and guide the $2 billion submarine.

Serving as officer of the deck, Lt. j.g. Austin Van Olst, 24, who has been on board the Minnesota since November 2011, tells the pilot and co-pilot what speed, depth and direction they are to head.

"I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a 24-year-old with this much responsibility," he said. "It is something not a whole lot of people my age get to do. It's a pretty unique job."

The crew of 134 enlisted sailors and officers aboard the 377-foot submarine must maintain proficiency, some in more than one role.

"It is such a small crew we have to know our jobs," said Petty Officer Christopher Miller. Miller, 28, of Los Angeles, is an information systems technician who also helps with monitoring on-board navigation systems.

The systems and equipment on the submarine remind some of the men of video games they once played, with the interactive screens, buttons and joysticks, they said.

"It's like a spaceship," said Chief Petty Officer Richard Shamberger. "Everything is electronic." Petty Officer 1st Class Chaz Lewis said he was at first unsure about the high-tech gear on the Minnesota. He previously served on an older submarine, the USS Hartford.

"The Los Angeles class is a lot more manual," said Lewis, of Moosup, Conn., referring to his previous duty. Lewis has been in the Navy for more than six years. "At first I was apprehensive because I had experience on my other boat."

A day earlier, the USS Minnesota fired its four test torpedoes. The heavy door to the torpedo tube opens automatically as opposed to manually on the older subs.

In firing simulations, the torpedo tubes were filled with water which was then propelled out of the tube with blasts of compressed air that normally launch torpedoes out of the submarine. The firings seemed to change the air pressure throughout the ship and gives the sensation in the ears of an airplane descending.

Many of the men in the crew said they came to the submarine service not knowing exactly what to expect. They said they relished the experience of serving on a submarine, despite the hardships.

They live for months at a time in a 377-foot long, three-story tube with no windows and very limited view to the outside even when traveling on the surface of the ocean.

Space is at a premium. "Berthing racks" — the seagoing equivalent of bunk beds — are stacked with about 18 inches between them. A two-foot passageway separates the stacks.

Serving on a submarine, more than on any other kind of ship, takes teamwork, discipline and highly specialized skills, crew members said.

Chief Petty Officer Mike Witsil was assigned to the USS Minnesota while it was still being built. "I've been here since it was a chunk of metal," he said, "because as soon as it hit the water, we needed to know everything."

Witsil, 39, of St. Petersburg, Fla., said that large sections of the ship were put together as he and others trained and prepared for their service aboard it.

"It was awe-inspiring seeing this submarine come together," he said.

Navy Wants to Grow Virginia-Class Sub Fleet

The U.S. Navy wants to expand the size of its planned fleet of Virginia-class submarines by 21 ships, service officials said.

The Navy's fleet of fast attack Virginia-class submarines, designed to replace the now-retiring Los Angeles class of submarines, is currently listed in the Pentagon's Acquisition Program Baseline, or APB, as a 30-ship program.

However, the Navy's Fiscal Year 2014 30-Year Shipbuilding Plan calls for continued construction of the Virginia-class attack submarines out to 2033, leading to a total fleet size of 51 ships, said Capt. David Goggins, the Navy's program manager for Virginia-class submarines.

"We are working with the Pentagon to update the APB to increase the size of the class from 30 to 51 or another number," Goggins said.

Merging the program's baseline numbers with what's specified in the Navy's shipbuilding plan is an effort that has been underway for months, Navy officials explained.

Cost overruns pushed back the Navy's goal of building two Virginia-class submarines per year by a decade.

Virginia-class submarines are fast-attack submarines armed with Tomahawk missiles, torpedoes and other weapons designed to allow the vessel to execute a range of missions. Goggins explained that the Virginia-class will provide a significant upgrade in littoral warfare compared to the Los Angeles-class.

For instance, the ships can be driven primarily through software code and electronics, thus freeing up time and energy for an operator who does not need to manually control each small maneuver.

"What enables this is the ship control system that we use. You can drive the ship electronically. This allows you the flexibility to be in littorals or periscope depth for extended periods of time and remain undetected," Goggins said.

The Virginia-class submarines are engineered with a "fly-by-wire" capability which allows the ship to quietly linger in shallow waters without having to surface or have each small move controlled by a human operator, Goggins said.

"There's a person at the helm giving the orders of depth and speed. There's always a person in the loop. The software is telling the planes and the rudder how to move in order to maintain a course and depth. You still have a person giving the electronic signal," he said.

Unlike their predecessor-subs, Virginia-class submarines are engineered with what's called a "lock out trunk" -- a compartment in the sub which allows special operations forces to submerge beneath the water and deploy without requiring the ship to surface, Goggins explained.

"SEALs and Special Operations Forces have the ability to go into a lock out trunk and flood, equalize and deploy while submerged, undetected. That capability is not on previous submarine classes," he added.

Unlike their "SSBN" Ohio-Class counterparts armed with nuclear weapons, the Virginia-Class "SSN" ships are purely for conventional attack, Navy officials said. However, one analyst theorized that perhaps, in the future, Virginia-class submarines could be configured to carry nuclear weapons.

"There is obviously a land-attack mission for the Virginia-class submarines because they launch Tomahawks. In the future, there could be a nuclear role for them because, once upon a time, Tomahawks were nuclear-capable. If you buy more Virginias, you get a flexible platform," said Christopher Preble, vice president for defense and foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank.

With the nuclear-armed Ohio-class, its primary role is to quietly function as a vitally important deterrent, Preble added, explaining that it has been many years since nuclear weapons were carried on Navy surface ships.

The Virginia-class submarines are built by a cooperative arrangement between the Navy and Electric Boat, a subsidiary of General Dynamics and Newport News Shipbuilding, a division of Huntington Ingalls Industries.

Each industry partner constructs portions, or "modules," of the submarines which are then melded together to make a complete vessel, industry and Navy officials explained. Thus far, 10 Virginia-class subs have been delivered to the Navy, and seven are currently under construction. Like other programs, the Virginia-class submarines are broken up into procurement "blocks."

Blocks I and II, totaling 10 ships, have already been delivered. At the same time, the program is getting ready for the formal arrival of its first Block III Virginia-class Submarine, the USS North Dakota, which is slated for delivery in January of next year.

On Dec. 22, 2008, the Navy awarded a contract for eight Virginia-class submarines. The third contract for the Virginia-class, or Block III, covering hulls numbered 784 through 791 -- is a $14 billion multi-year procurement, Navy officials said.

Multi-year deals are designed to decrease cost and production time by, in part, allowing industry to shore up supplies in advance and stabilize production activities over a number of years. Budget uncertainties connected to sequestration have made these deals more difficult.

The eighth Block III Virginia-class sub is slated to begin construction next month. The Block III subs, now under construction, are being built with new so-called Virginia Payload Tubes designed to lower costs and increase capability, Goggins explained.

Instead of building what most existing Virginia-class submarines have -- 12 individual 21-inch in diameter vertical launch tubes able to fire Tomahawk missiles -- the Block III submarines are being built with two-larger 87-inch in diameter tubes able to house six Tomahawk missiles each.

"For each one of these tubes, you have hydraulics and you have electronics. What we did for Block III is we went to two very large Virginia Payload Tubes -- now you have two tubes versus 12. It is much easier to build these two tubes," Goggins said.

Although the new tubes were conceived and designed as part of what the Navy calls its "Design for Affordability" strategy to lower costs, the move also brings strategic advantages to the platform, Goggins explained.

"In the future, beyond Tomahawk -- if you want to put some other weapon in here-- you can," Goggins said. Also, for Block V construction, the Navy is planning to insert a new 97-foot-long section designed to house additional missile capability. In fact, the Navy's Capabilities Development Document, or CDD, for what's called the "Virginia Payload Modules" is finished up and now being assessed by Pentagon acquisition officials.

The Block V Virginia Payload Modules will add a new "module" or section of the submarine, increasing its Tomahawk missile firing capability from 12 to 40, Goggins added. The idea is to have additional Tomahawk or other missile capability increased by 2026, when the "SSGN" Ohio-Class Guided Missile Submarines start retiring in larger numbers, he explained.

Shipbuilders currently working on Block III boats at Newport News Shipyard, Va., say Block V will involve a substantial addition to the subs.

"Block V will take another cylindrical section and insert it in the middle of the submarine so it will actually lengthen the submarine a little and provide some additional payload capability," said Ken Mahler, Vice President of Navy Programs, Huntington Ingalls Industries.

The first Block V submarine is slated to begin construction in fiscal 2019, Navy officials said. The President's 2014 budget request cites $5.4 billion for Virginia Class Submarines; the breakdown includes $3.7 billion to fund two ships in 2014 as part of a multi-year contract, plus $1.6 billion advance procurement dollars for two ships in 2015. The budget request also includes funding to prototype components and systems engineering for the Block V Virginia Payload Modules.

Overall, the Virginia-class submarine effort has made substantive progress in reducing construction time, lowering costs and delivering boats ahead of schedule, Goggins said.

"We're delivering submarines jointly with EB (Electric Boat) below budget up to 11 months ahead of the contract date. The Navy's 30-year shipbuilding plan calls for two per year. We will continue to look for ways to deliver early and under budget," Mahler said.

The last six Block III Virginia-class submarines have been delivered ahead of schedule, Navy officials said. The program's current two-boats per year production schedule, for about $4 billion dollars, can be traced back to a 2005 challenge issued by then Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Mullen. Mullen challenged the program to reduce production costs by 20 percent, saying that would allow the Navy to build two Virginia-class submarines per year, Goggins indicated.

This amounted to lowering the per-boat price of the submarines by as much as $400 million each, he added. This was accomplished through a number of efforts, including an effort called "capital" investments wherein the Navy partnered with industry to invest in ship-building methods and technologies aimed at lowering production costs.

Other cost-reducing factors were multi-year contract awards, efforts to streamline production and work to reduce operations and sustainment, or O&S costs, Goggins explained.

Navy Looks To Reduce Timing Interval When Firing Tomahawks From Subs

The Navy is looking to industry in cutting down the amount of time it takes to fire successive Tomahawk missiles from the service's Virginia-class submarine fleet.

Minimizing the interval between missile shots reduces the risk of adversaries detecting the submarine, Naval Sea Systems Command spokeswoman Brie Lang wrote in an Aug. 30 email.

The service is looking to industry to provide a cross blast analysis to determine the minimum allowable launch interval for the Block III Virginia-class subs, according to a Federal Business Opportunities notice.

"The analysis shall specifically address a 15-second interval but also determine the shortest interval for missiles launched within the same multiple all-up-round canister (MAC) or from alternating MACs," the notice reads. "The analysis will be multi-disciplinary and address potential impacts by the pressure/vent system, gas generator and weapon control system timing on the structural capability of the capsule closure assembly, effects on missile pull-out accuracy."

Lang said the analysis is scheduled to begin and end in fiscal year 2014. The next steps for this effort are to conduct the analysis and study the results, she wrote.

Since this is a software effort, the submarine force would be able to implement any changes during its biennial technology insertion-advanced processor build process, she added.

Naval Air Systems Command intends to award this contract to Raytheon Missile Systems, the contractor for the Tomahawk missile. Last week, Raytheon's stock was trading at its highest level at about $77 a share while unrest continues in Syria. The Tomahawk was last used to take out targets in Libya during a 2011 operation to cause a regime change in Libya.

The Navy has bought extra Tomahawks to replenish its inventories following the civil war in Libya, awarding Raytheon two contracts last year, one for 361 missiles and the other for 252.

USS Cod Submarine Memorial in Cleveland Starts Engines After More Than 40 Years, Fires Cannons

CLEVELAND - On Monday, USS Cod Submarine Memorial in downtown Cleveland honored the men and women who built the 312-feet long submarine 70 years ago with a Labor Day Sea Show.

In addition to touring the outside and inside of the submarine, visitors witnessed hourly cannon salutes from USS Cod's 5-inch deck gun.

For the first time in more than 40 years, the main engines of the fully restored Cod were also started up. The sight of smoke and diesel smell of the Cleveland built engines did not seem to bother curious onlookers.

USS Cod was one of 275 submarines American industry built during World War II. "The workforce was about one-third women. It turns out they were better welders," said USS Cod Submarine Memorial director Paul Farace. "They had more consistent, more quality welding, according to what the Navy said."

For some, visiting USS Cod on Labor Day is a family tradition. "Every Labor Day I come out here with my family, with my husband and my son," said Vania Mahon of Willowick. "I like to teach my son about history."

"My favorite part is usually just sitting down right by the cannon," said Vania's son, Francis Miekeley-Harris. USS Cod officials held the Labor Day Sea Show in response to the cancelation of the Cleveland National Air Show.

See the video here: USS COD starts engines.

British Warship HMS Brilliant Torpedoed WHALES During Falklands War After Mistaking Them For Enemy Submarines

A British warship fired on and killed three whales during the Falklands War after mistaking them for enemy submarines. The startling revelation is contained within new eyewitness accounts of the tense days aboard anti-submarine frigate HMS Brilliant during the 1982 conflict in the southern seas.

Radar on the Royal Navy ship was unable to distinguish between attacking 'Wolf Packs' of subs and a pod of whales. In one instance, two of the mammals were killed by torpedoes and the third was attacked by one of the ship’s helicopters.

Engineer Ginge Offord, whose account was written five years ago and only just been published on - a site dedicated to recording the testimony of crew for posterity.

In an extract from his experience of the Falklands War, he wrote: 'During the day we went to Action Stations a number of times as we were receiving reports of enemy aircraft taking off from their bases on the mainland. They were chased off by our CAP (combat air patrol).

'Searches and attacks went on until darkness, when we broke off and headed back to the main group. 'Our tally for the day was a pair of whales. Sadly, their signature on sonar is similar to that of a submarine. The torpedo Petty Officer gained the sobriquet "Wolf Pack".'

Brilliant had been deployed to the South Atlantic to protect one of Britain's two aircraft carriers from Argentinian submarine and missile attack.

The brush with whales was not a rare occurrence, judging by the testimony of HMS Brilliant's Captain John Francis Coward. Recollection on instance, he wrote: 'One night Brilliant went chasing submarines, which proved rather less than successful. I had received a typical Woodward signal: "An aircraft has reported sighting a submarine twenty miles north of Port Stanley. Go find him and bring me back his hat."

'I knew if we found him he'd be on the bottom and the whole place was littered with old whaling ships. 'We would find something, ping on it and it would look about the size of a small submarine, so we'd fly a helicopter with a magnetic detector over it and, yes, it would say it's metal. But I didn't have enough bombs to cover each wreck, and very few helicopters with metal detectors on them.

'The place was also full of whales, which gave enormous echoes on the sonar. Every so often a whale would come up, give a little blow, and a flock of seagulls would gather round, appearing as a quick flash on the radar.

'Everybody would say, "Christ, it must be a submarine," and we launched a few torpedoes at things like that. 'All in all, it was a total frustration but, looking back, I've a feeling that one of those wrecks was the San Luis and I think that eventually the analysis boys will confirm it.'

However, whales were not a totally benign presence in the water. Within the accounts from crew, one member recalls how the ship sustained damaged after colliding with one of the enormous mammals.

He noted: 'After about twelve months we had the misfortune to collide with a whale, which broke away some of the steel plates that covered the rudder. After a few more convoys some more of the plates came away, so it was back to UK for repairs and another refit, this time in Chatham dockyard.'

Exclusive Look Inside the USS Minnesota

With a bottle of bubbly and cheers from the crowd, the US Navy christened its newest submarine in October 2012. When it's commissioned in summer 2013, the sub will be known as the USS Minnesota.

Now, we can show you an exclusive look at the submarine as it's being finished, inside and out. Eyewitness News reporter Mark Albert and photojournalist Chad Nelson traveled recently to the shipyard in Newport News, Virginia, to introduce us to our home-state sailors on the Minnesota, including Duluth native Machinery Leading Petty Officer Ted Collette.

Watch the very cool video by clicking here: USS Minnesota

Nuclear Missile-Equipped Submarine Fleet

"The equivalent of 200,000,000 - 400,000,000 pounds of TNT...." Amid the rapidly assembling fleets of the United States, Russia and China warily eyeing each other off the coast of Syria, another regional naval power that's figuratively flying under the radar of public notice is Israel's small but very powerful fleet, as evidenced by the Jewish State conducting a missile test on the open waters of the Eastern Mediterranean, as published by the Associated Press via the Las Vegas Sun on Sept. 7, 2013.

In a terse press notification issued by the Israeli Ministry of Defense (MoD) earlier this week, a single missile was test fired fired over the open seas.

The Israeli MoD tightly lipped gave no other details. However, various state-run Russian news agencies have reported that Russian radar systems had detected two "ballistic objects" fired from the central Mediterranean toward the eastern part of the sea.

Not So Friendly Dolphins...London's The Sunday Times reported in 2010 that the Israeli Navy's Flotilla 7, comprised of three German-built Dolphin-class submarines — the INS (Israeli Naval Ship) Dolphin, the INS Tekuma and the INS Leviathan — have paid less than clandestine visits to the Gulf in the past, undoubtedly to send a message to the Iranian Mullahs who continue to call for the destruction of Israel.

The flotilla’s commander, identified only as “Colonel O”, told an Israeli newspaper:

We are an underwater assault force. We’re operating deep and far, very far, from our borders. Fifth Sub Delivered, Sixth On Its Way...

Long suspected of equipping their growing armada of subs with nuclear armed cruise missiles, Russia Today quoted Former German State Secretary Lothar Ruhl earlier this year that he's “always assumed that Israel would deploy nuclear weapons on the submarines.”

Dolphin-class submarines are equipped with hydraulic ejection systems that enable the underwater launch of Israeli Popeye Turbo SLCM long-range cruise missiles, believed to have nuclear warheads.

Israel’s Popeye cruise missiles are believed to have a range of up to 900 miles and carry a 450 pound payload, enough for a 100 to 200 kT variable yield warhead, the equivalent of 200,000,000 - 400,000,000 pounds of TNT.

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