The Cold War Years. A Hot War in reality. Part 3

I have just sent the third novel of my new ‘Cold War’ series, The Blue Effect, to my Editor. On target for a May publication. This will be the final book in the trilogy, covering the hypothetical invasion of West Germany, the Federal Republic of Germany, by the Warsaw Pact in the mid 1980’s. Book 1, ‘The Red Effect’, encompasses the intelligence build up leading to the Warsaw Pact strike against the NATO forces lined up against them. The Black Effect takes it to a new level. The Blue Effect? Well you will have to read it to find out.

The Cold War era started very soon after the end of the second world war, when the communist east, led by the Soviet Union, and the Western world, led by the United States and its NATO allies, faced each across what became known as the ‘Iron Curtain’.

.

The capital of Germany, Berlin, was divided into four Sectors. The consequence being, that the three Western Allied Powers now controlled territory deep within the Soviet Union Zone of Germany.

Over time, the tensions between the four Allied powers increased, eventually resulting in the Berlin blockade in 1948, when the Soviets attempted to starve West Berlin into submission and force the other three Allied powers out. This failed and the Soviets eventually relented, but an ever-increasing number of East Germans fled to the West; between 150,000 and 300,000 a year during 1951-1953. As a consequence restrictions were placed on movement between the divided country. From 1961, the border was closed and Berlin completely encircled, first by barbed wire, then bricks and finally a concrete wall, along with the infamous ‘death strip’.

Access was now restricted between Berlin and the West. A wall, 124 mile miles in length, was placed around the three sectors of West Berlin, cutting off the city from the rest of the world.

.

Remains of the Berlin Wall. Berlin 2012.

.

Remains of the Berlin Wall. Berlin 2012.

.

An Iconic picture of the face-off between the West and the East.  The Cold War continues – October 1961

Another iconic picture of a GDR Border Guard fleeing across the barbed wire to the West -Berlin 1961.

I believe that this soldier has since died. May he rest in peace.

.

I shall cover various aspects of the two opposing forces, providing the backdrop and background information in preparation for the release of my third Cold War novel. In the meantime, you could always read my WW2 series, Devils with Wings. 🙂

In 1984/85, the Warsaw Pact was already a significant force, the Soviet Union in particular.

The majority of the Strategic Nuclear forces for both NATO and the Warsaw Pact were very much land or submarine based. Although I need to cover the Strategic Airforce for both sides, for this post i want to cover another element of the nuclear arsenal available. During the 80’s another nuclear delivery means came into being, the Intermediate Range Nuclear Missile and the Tactical Nuclear Missile.

The Soviet Union had 378 x SS-20 (Intermediate Range Ballistic Missiles, IRBM)

.

SS-20 IRBM. 

.

SS-20 was deployed from 1976 to 1988.

.

NATO reporting name was SS-20, Sabre. Range of 3,400 miles and carried a warhead of 3 x 150 kiloton MIRVs.

.

IRBM’s in NATO forces were attached to their ground forces rather than held back as a strategic force. Saying that, the decision to use them would sit with the highest political levels as the use of tactical nuclear weapons could well escalate to a full scale nuclear exchange.

United States – 4 x Pershing I/II SSM (Surface to Surface Missile) battalions and 8 x Lance SSM battalions.

United Kingdom – 1 x Lance SSM Missile Regiment (12 Lance)

Federal Republic of Germany – 4 x Lance SSM Battalions.

France – 18 x S-3 IRBM’s and 5 x SSM Regiments with Pluton.

Netherlands – 1 x SSM Battalion (4 x Lance).

Belgium – 1 x Lance SSM Battalion (4 x Lance).

Italy – 1 x Lance SSM Battalion (4 x Lance).

 Turkey – 4 x SSM Battalions with Honest John.

Greece – 2 x SSM Battalions with Honest John (8 x missiles).

.

Pershing I, carried on its own TEL (Transporter, Erector and Loader). Range of 460 miles, it was very much a theatre nuclear weapon. It carried a range of nuclear warheads from 60 to 400 kilotons.

.

Pershing II.  This weapon was developed as there was a requirement for a smaller warhead, but with greater accuracy. Theatre, or Tactical, nuclear weapons were coming of age. It had a range of 1,100 miles and a 5 to 80 kiloton warhead. For the first time there was a real risk of nuclear weapons being used on a conventional battlefield.

.

MG-52 Lance was a mobile, tactical surface-to-surface missile.

.

Although the United States and Britain would arm it with nuclear warheads,

it could also be used with conventional warheads.

.

Range of 75 miles, a true tactical weapon.

.

Carried a variety of warheads up to 100 kilotons.

.

Honest-John was the first nuclear capable surface-to-surface missile in the United States arsenal.

.

Honest-John, M-31, had a range of just over 15 miles and could carry a 20 kiloton warhead. It was also capable of carrying a Sarin nerve gas, cluster munitions.

.

The S-3 was a two-stage, solid propellant Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile. A range of 3,500 kilometres carrying a warhead of 1.2 megatons. It couldn’t function well as a battlefield tactical weapon.

.

With its own TEL, Pluton was a Short-Range tactical Ballistic Missile (SRBM). A conventional, or a 15 or 25 kiloton nuclear warhead. It had an operational range of 80 miles.

.

There were also the conventional forces lined up along the Inner German Border, the visible barrier between the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the German Democratic Republic (GDR), or better known as West and East Germany. I shall be covering their organisation and equipment over the coming months.

.

Leopard C1 Tank.

.

Leopard 1, the Canadian variant.

.

Leopard C1, Main Battle Tank. They had a 105mm, L7 gun, developed by Britain’s Royal Ordnance  Factories.

.

Multi-fuel, 10 cylinder engine, 830 hp. 10-70mm of RHA armour, this tank was used by the Canadian Army.

.

42.5  tons, crew of 4 and a top speed of 40mph.

.

A 105mm gun was its main weapon, supported by 2 x 7.62mm MGs

.

105mm rifled barrel.

.

 

This was the preferred replacement for the British Centurion as the new Chieftain was seen as too powerful for anything other than a global conflict

.

A great tank.

.

Leopards on the move.

.

HarveyBlack-Red Effect150313

My intention is not to portray a particular message, but just share some of my research and experiences with you.  This is the first of my new ‘Cold War’ series, supporting the writing of my new ‘Cold War’ series of novels, covering the hypothetical invasion of West Germany by the Warsaw Pact in the 80’s. ‘The Red Effect’.

I have already started on the first of my Apocalyptic novels, based in the UK. Based on the aftermath of a strategic nuclear exchange, it will be hard hitting and realistic. I have also started the research for the fourth book in my Devils with Wings series, placing Max and Paul in ever more dangerous situations.

For those that have read my novels I tank you very much for your support. It is that support that encourages me to continue writing.

Photographs and Blog are copyrighted to Harvey Black

The Cold War.  A Hot War in reality.  Part 2

I have completed 100,000 words of my third novel of my new ‘Cold War’ trilogy. The Blue Effect is the third in the series, covering the hypothetical invasion of West Germany, the Federal Republic of Germany, by the Warsaw Pact in the mid 1980’s.  I will finish the fine tuning over the next couple of weeks, then off to the Editor. Book 1, ‘The Red Effect’, encompasses the intelligence build up leading to the Warsaw Pact strike against the NATO forces lined up against them. The Black Effect takes it a stage further. The Blue Effect? Well, you will find out in May 2014.

The Cold War era started very soon after the end of the second world war, when the communist east, led by the Soviet Union, and the Western world, led by the United States and its NATO allies, faced each across what became known as the ‘Iron Curtain’.

.

The capital of Germany, Berlin, was divided into four Sectors. The consequence being, that the three Western Allied powers now controlled territory deep within the Soviet Union Zone of Germany.

Over time, the tensions between the four Allied powers increased, eventually resulting in the Berlin blockade in 1948, when the Soviets attempted to starve West Berlin into submission and force the other three Allied powers out. This failed and the Soviets eventually relented, but an ever-increasing number of East Germans fled to the West; between 150,000 and 300,000 a year during 1951-1953. As a consequence restrictions were placed on movement between the divided country. From 1961, the border was closed and Berlin completely encircled, first by barbed wire, then bricks and finally a concrete wall, along with the infamous ‘death strip’.

Access was now restricted between Berlin and the West. A wall, 124 mile miles in length, was placed around the three sectors of West Berlin, cutting off the city from the rest of the world.

.

Cold war 9

The badly damaged Reichstag. Berlin 1945

The present day Reichstag. 2012.

.

An Iconic picture of the face-off between the West and the East.  The Cold War starts – October 1961

Another iconic picture of a GDR Border Guard fleeing across the barbed wire to the West -Berlin 1961


.

I shall cover various aspects of the two opposing forces, providing the backdrop and background information in preparation for the release of my three novels. In the meantime, you could always read my WW2 series, Devils with Wings. 🙂

In 1984/85, the Warsaw Pact was already a significant force, the Soviet Union in particular. For this, and the next Post, I will cover the Soviet and NATO strategic inventory, which was being modernised by both the Warsaw Pact and NATO.

.

Soviet Typhoon Class submarine under way. 

Apart from the Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles in their Strategic arsenal, both the Soviet Union and NATO had a second arm that could be used to initiate a nuclear strike, Submarine launched Ballistic Missiles, SLBMs. What made these particularly important was their survivability and their ability to initiate a retaliatory strike. Should the Soviets, or NATO for that matter, decide to launch a massive pre-emptive nuclear strike that could potentially wipe out all fixed ICBM sites, all countries with SLBMs would be in a position to strike back. The ‘Assured Mutual Destruction’ concept.

The Soviet Union had 2 x H-II SSBN (SSBN Ballistic Missile carrying submarine) (3 x SS-N-5), 1 x H-III  SSBN (6 x SS-N-8), 23 x Y-I SSBN (16 x SS-N-6), 1 x Y-II (12 x SS-N-17), 18 x D-I SSBN (12 x SS-N-8), 4 x D-II SSBN (16 x SS-N-8), 14 x D-III SSBN (16 x SS-N-18) and 2 x Typhoon SSBN (20 x SS-N-20). Four more Typhoons were under construction.

.

Cold War Years 017 (1)

A Russian Yankee Class SSBN, K-219.

The above is the Yankee Class SSBN. K-219 was lost at sea in 1986, after an explosion and fire onboard. This was the first Soviet submarine to have thermonuclear firepower comparable with their American and British counterparts.

.

The above is a Delta Class SSBN, a D-IV. The time period I am covering in my novels, this would only have been in the building phase.

.

Delta II SSBN

The Delta III was equipped with a new battle management system, the Almaz-BDR, for the fire control of torpedoes in deep water. This was the first Soviet submarine that could launch any number of missiles in a single salvo and also the first to carry ballistic missiles with multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles (MIRVs). Each of the 16 missiles could carry 3-7 MIRVs.

.

Typhoon Class SSBN, the largest class of submarine ever built with a displacement of 48,000 tons.

.

These latest Russian submarines could patrol under the icecap and then surface to launch their missiles, negating the need to transit the Greenland-Iceland-United Kingdom, GIUK, gap.

.

The US, UK and France also possessed SSBNs

US – 4 x Ohio SSBN (24 x Trident) 7 x Ohio on order, 19 x Lafayette SSBN (16 x Poseidon) and 12 x Franklin Class SSBN (16 x Trident).

UK – 4 x Resolution Class SSBN (16 x Polaris A3 (3 x MIRV))

France – 4 x Redoutable Class SSBN (16 x M-20)

Ohio SSBN undergoing a conversion to an SSGN, a conventional missile submarine, in 2003.

.

HMS Renown, one of four SSBNs, later replaced by the Vanguard Class of submarine, carrying Trident 2.

.

The French Redoutable Class SSBN

.

A Trident II missiles fires its first stage  SRB after an underwater launch from a Royal Navy Vanguard Class ballistic missile submarine.

.

There were also the conventional forces lined up along the Inner German Border, the visible barrier between the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the German Democratic Republic (GDR), or better known as West and East Germany. I shall be covering their organisation and equipment over the coming months.

.

Ferret Mk 5, Scout Car with (4)  Swingfire Missiles. Swingfire was an anti-tank, wire guided missile capable of destroying any armoured fighting vehicle in its day, 1965 – 1970.

.

Weighing in the region of 4 1/2 tons, it travelled at a top speed of nearly 50mph. It had an armour thickness of 16mm, and a crew of 2.

.

Leopard C2, Main Battle Tank.

.

70mm armour, this tank was used by the Canadian Army.

.

42 tons, crew of 4 and a top speed of 40mph.

.

A 105mm gun was its main weapon, supported 2 x 7.62mm MGs

.

This was the preferred replacement for the British Centurion as the new Chieftain was seen as too powerful for anything other than a global conflict.

.


Soviet soldiers on exercise in East Berlin – East Berlin 1984

.

HarveyBlack-Red Effect150313

My intention is not to portray a particular message, but just share some of my research and experiences with you.  This above, The Red Effect is the first of my new ‘Cold War’ series. The Black Effect is now available. The Blue Effect is due out in May

Photographs and Blog are copyrighted to Harvey Black

The Cold War Years – Part 4.

I am 18,500 words into the first novel of my new ‘Cold War’ series. There will be three books in total, covering the hypothetical invasion of West Germany, the Federal Republic of Germany, by the Warsaw Pact in the mid 1980’s. Book 1, ‘The Red Effect’, will encompass the intelligence build up leading to the Warsaw Pact strike against the NATO forces lined up against them.

The Cold War era started very soon after the end of the second world war, when the communist east, led by the Soviet Union, and the Western world, led by the United States and its NATO allies, faced each across what became known as the ‘Iron Curtain’.

.

.

The capital of Germany, Berlin, was divided into four Sectors. The consequence being, that the three Western Allied powers now controlled territory deep within the Soviet Union Zone of Germany.

Over time, the tensions between the four Allied powers increased, eventually resulting in the Berlin blockade in 1948, when the Soviets attempted to starve West Berlin into submission and force the other three Allied powers out. This failed and the Soviets eventually relented, but an ever-increasing number of East Germans fled to the West; between 150,000 and 300,000 a year during 1951-1953. As a consequence restrictions were placed on movement between the divided country. From 1961, the border was closed and Berlin completely encircled, first by barbed wire, then bricks and finally a concrete wall, along with the infamous ‘death strip’.

Access was now restricted between Berlin and the West. A wall, 124 mile miles in length, was placed around the three sectors of West Berlin, cutting off the city from the rest of the world.

An Iconic picture of the face-off between the West and the East.  The Cold War starts – October 1961.

.

I shall cover various aspects of the two opposing forces, providing the backdrop and background information in preparation for the release of my three novels. In the meantime, you could always read my WW2, Devils with Wings series. :)

In 1984/85, the Warsaw Pact was already a significant force, the Soviet Union in particular.

Although the key strategic Nuclear Forces of the Soviet Union and NATO, were either land based or submarine launched, supported by Tactical, Theatre, Nuclear weapons, they also had the use of the Air Force to deliver a nuclear strike.

Soviet Union.

Long Range Bombers – 100 x Tu-95 (Codename Bear). Unknown number of Bear H in production, capable of carrying an air-launched cruise missile.

Medium Range Bombers – 220 x Tu-16 (Codename Badger), 125 x Tu-22 (Codename Blinder) and 130 x Tu-22M (codenamed Backfire).

Tu-160 (Codenamed Blackjack).

.

Tupolev Tu-95. (NATO Code Name: Bear). Claimed to be a reverse engineered B-29, Super-fortres. A long wingspan of 164 feet.

.

 Maximum speed of 575 mph with a range of 9,400 miles. Armament of 2 x 23mm AM-23, radar-controlled auto-cannon. 15,000 kilogram payload. The Tu-95MS variant carried the Kh-55, air-launched strategic cruise missile family, one with a 200 kiloton warhead.

.

Tu-22 Blinder. A supersonic, swing-wing, long range strategic and maritime strike bomber.

.

Tu-22. Speed of 1,240 mph with a combat radius of 1,500 miles. 1 x 23 mm GSh-23, remote-controlled cannon in tail turret. The Kh-55 nuclear cruise missile has been tested on this aircraft, but no confirmation that it is in service.

.

Tu-160 (Codename Blackjack).  Swing-wing, with a max speed 1,380 mph and a range of 7,600 miles, without in-flight refuelling. Can carry 12 x Raduga Kh-55, nuclear cruise missiles or 12 x Raduga Kh-15 short-range nuclear missiles.

.

Kh-55 Cruise Missile.

.

United States of America

Long Range Bombers – 90 x B-52H and  84 x B-52G

Medium Range Bombers – 56 x FB-111A

On order – 18 x B-1B bombers (100 planned.)

.

Boeing B-52 Stratofortress, with underslung drones.

.

Lower deck of the B-52, dubbed the battle-station.

.

B-52H. Payload of 31,500 kilograms of mixed ordnance. 1 x 20mm M61 Vulcan cannon mounted in remote-control tail turret. The B-28 nuclear bomb could be set for an air or ground burst with a yield of up to 1.45 megaton.

.

Maximum speed of 650 mph, with a range of 3,980 miles.

.

FB-111A, long range bomber. It could carry the AGM-69 SRAM, Short Range Attack Missile (Nuclear). Speed of 1,650 mph with a range of 1,160 nautical miles.

.

Rockwell B-1 Lancer, a four engined, variable-sweep winged strategic bomber. The planned replacement for the B-52. Maximum speed of 830 mph, with a range of 7,456 miles. Can carry 24 x B61 (Max 340 kilotons) or B63 (Max 1.2 megatons) nuclear gravity bombs.

.

B-28 nuclear bomb.

.

United Kingdom

Strategic Long Range Bombers – 130 x Avro Vulcan.B2

.

Delta Wing Strategic Bomber

.

Armament: 21 x 454 kilograms of conventional bombs or 1 x free-fall nuclear bomb/1 x Blue Steel missile (1.1 megaton).

.

Maximum speed of 607 mph with a range of 2,600 miles.

.

Blue Steel – Air Launched Cruise Missile.

.

France

Supersonic Strategic Bombers – 28 x Mirage IVA

.

Maximum speed of 1,454 mph and a range of 775 miles. Carries 1 x AN-11 or 1 x AN-22 nuclear bomb (70 kilotons).

.

AN-11 Nuclear Bomb

.

There were also the conventional forces lined up along the Inner German Border, the visible barrier between the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the German Democratic Republic (GDR), or better known as West and East Germany. I shall be covering their organisation and equipment over the coming months.

.

M-60, or Patton Tank.

.

Maximum speed of 30 mph

.

A first generation Main Battle Tank.

.

Main armament is the British 105mm, M68 gun.

.

45 tons with an armour thickness of 155.6mm.

.

V-12, air-cooled Twin-turbo diesel engine.

.

Top speed of 30mph.

.

Introduced in 1960.

.

Saw service in the Gulf War.

.

M-60 Patton,  over 15,000 built.

.

M-60

.

Carries a .50 calibre gun

.

M-60

.

Berlin Air Safety Centre controlled all aircraft in and out of Berlin, including the Air Corridors that transited East Germany.

.

.

Berlin Air Safety Centre controlled all aircraft in and out of Berlin, including the Air Corridors that transited East Germany.

My intention is not to portray a particular message, but just share some of my research and experiences with you.  This is the first of my new ‘Cold War’ series, supporting the writing of my new ‘Cold War’ series of novels, covering the hypothetical invasion of West Germany by the Warsaw Pact in the 80’s. ‘The Red Effect’. so keep your eyes peeled.

.

HarveyBlack-Red Effect150313

Photographs and Blog are copyrighted to Harvey Black