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A Time to Die:
The Untold Story of the Kursk Tragedy

by Robert Moore

ISBN 140005124X / 9781400051243 / 1-4000-5124-X
Publisher Three Rivers Press
Language English
Edition Softcover
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Book summary

In August 2000, explosions rocked the Russian nuclear submarine the Kursk, killing most crewmembers instantly and leaving the sub stranded in the Barents Sea where the remaining personnel would also soon perish. When the story was reported worldwide, it was met with considerably more questions than answers: What caused the explosion? Could the men be rescued? And why was the Russian military being so secretive about the incident? Journalist Robert Moore has gathered extensive information regarding the incident to answer those and numerous other questions in this exhaustive account. Moore pieces together a harrowing narrative of the events leading to the two on-board explosions that instantly killed 88 men while sparing, temporarily, 23 others. Soon, the story spreads beyond the Arctic Circle as the book offers tales of frightened families searching for information, international rescue teams attempting to reach the crew in time, a Russian government whose disorganization or obfuscation may have hampered those efforts, and American submarine crews poised just outside Russian waters. Where the book succeeds most is in the details: the fact that the rubber-wrapped Kursk was nearly impossible to detect on sonar, the speculation that the tapping noises often reported may have been tales invented by the Northern Fleet to add urgency to the rescue efforts, and the transcripts of notes left by the surviving crew members after the explosions had already occurred. --John Moe [via]