The Trident nuclear submarine is the most complex war machine the United States Navy has ever produced, a $1.8 billion marvel crammed with more modern military technology than any other vessel in the world. It is an 18,750-ton steel monster, taller in length than the Washington Monument and wider than a three-lane highway at its center. Deep beneath the ocean, it can sail silently for months, prectically impossible to detect by the enemy. And the twenty-four ballistic missiles on board just one of these subs have enough strategic nuclear warheads to unleash twice the explosive energy detonated by all the conventional weapons in World War II.
Now, for the first time, veteran Time magazine correspondent Douglas C. Waller takes you on a tension-packed, three-month patrol deep in the Atlantic Ocean and inside one of these Tridents, the U.S.S. Nebraska. Granted more access to these awesome submarines than any journalist before, Waller penetrates one of the most secretive worlds in the U.S. Military.
The Cold War may be over, but the U.S. Navy still has Tridents lurking the oceans, always ready at a moment's notice to unleash a nuclear holocaust. In chilling detail, Big Red reveals the top-secret procedures for starting World War II -- the secret codes, the elaborate fail-safe mechanisms, the highly classified battle tactics for nuclear combat.
This book takes you into this closed society as a witness to secret rituals and life experience where submarines, underwater for months, hope never to unleash the destructive power they command.