Russian scientists have wed a massive nuclear bomb with torpedo technology and artificial intelligence, and one an expert in nuclear weapons, weapons of mass destruction, electromagnetic pulse (EMP), and cyber warfare is sounding the alarm. Dave Gahary interviewed Dr. Peter Pry for an exclusive AFP Podcast.
By Dave Gahary
What seemed like a new détente on the horizon between the United States and Russia from Donald Trump’s campaign promises of warmer relations has all but devolved into a new Cold War.
As the aggressive tactics of the warmongering neocons infesting Washington, D.C. push the superpowers toward an inevitable military confrontation, President Vladimir Putin’s Russia is preparing for the conflict with a weapon so threatening it has some U.S. nuclear weapons experts shaking in their hazmat suits.
A new book is sounding the alarm about Russia’s new weapon. Poseidon: Russia’s New Doomsday Machine is by Dr. Peter Vincent Pry, an expert in nuclear weapons, weapons of mass destruction, electromagnetic pulse (EMP), and cyber warfare and a former award-winning Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) analyst on the professional staff of the House Armed Services Committee.
Pry sat down with this newspaper for an exclusive interview.
Code-named “Poseidon” by the Russians—and “Kanyon” by the CIA—this new “doomsday machine” is a nuclear-powered, nuclear-armed, unmanned (i.e., drone) underwater vehicle (i.e., a really big torpedo) capable of traveling thousands of miles to strike an enemy’s (i.e., the U.S.) coastal targets by detonating a thermonuclear bomb underwater, which would create nuclear tsunamis and spread radioactive fallout.
In fact, six months ago, the U.S. Nuclear Posture Review admitted that Poseidon can “defeat U.S. anti-submarine capabilities by speed, stealth, and elusiveness, to deliver a 100-megaton warhead [10,000 times more powerful than the Hiroshima bomb], by far the most powerful nuclear weapon in existence.”
Although Pry believes Poseidon can deliver on its promises of coastal destruction, he thinks its true purpose is something more strategic.
“During the Cold War,” he began, “the Soviet Union achieved the ability to destroy our ICBMs, our long-range missiles in their silos, our bombers in their bases, and our submarines in port. But they couldn’t figure out a way to get our ballistic missile submarines that were on patrol at sea. And many analysts, including myself, think the only reason that we didn’t get a nuclear World War III is because the Soviet Union couldn’t figure out how to get those ballistic missile submarines that were on patrol at sea.”
Pry explained that during the Cold War the U.S. had up to 40 ballistic missile submarines, while today there are only 14 Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines, with only half of those operational.
“Our sea-based nuclear deterrent,” he explained, “the only leg of the triad that’s still really survivable, is down to seven ballistic missile submarines, so this is a great opportunity for the Russians to finally take out that last survivable leg of the triad.”
Poseidon is also equipped with artificial intelligence (AI)—to evade and defeat anti-submarine warfare systems, how and when to track ballistic missile submarines, and when to detonate itself—something that scares Pry.
“It’s the first time that a nuclear superweapon has been married to artificial intelligence,” he said.
As we’ve seen lately, AI can err—fatally—evidenced by self-driving cars.
“Do you want your fate and the fate of your children and grandchildren to be dependent upon an artificially intelligent doomsday machine, with a 100-megaton warhead trolling the world’s oceans based on a piece of Russian software?” Pry rhetorically asked.
Pry is also worried about another nightmare scenario: EMP, basically a lightning strike that fries all the electronics in the blast radius.
“Another purpose is to loft a 100-megaton warhead into space and detonate it in outer space over North America,” he said. “It would take out all of the 48 contiguous states, most of Canada, and a big chunk of Mexico, and put us—literally and figuratively—into the Dark Ages.”
PREVIOUS PODCASTS WITH DR. PRY:
North Korea Nuke Threat Is Multifold, Sept. 2017
EMP on Capitol Hill, Post-Hearing Update, Oct. 2012
Dave Gahary, a former submariner in the U.S. Navy, prevailed in a suit brought by the New York Stock Exchange in an attempt to silence him. Dave is the producer of an upcoming film about the attack on the USS Liberty. See the website erasingtheliberty.com for more information.