One of the great untold stories of the British services is that of the Royal Navy Submarine Service which entered the fray in World War I with 100 underwater craft. Through World War II, where submariners’ prospects of returning safely from a mission were only 50:50, the Falklands conflict and the sinking of the Belgrano, to present-day elite machines, the Silent Service has played an enormous part in British defence. John Parker’s in-depth investigation is very much personality led with diaries from the early part of the century to substantial first-person testimony from survivors of wartime heroics (when many VCs were won).
As you read this, a classified number of the Royal Navy’s deadly nuclear submarines lurk undetected in the depths of the world’s oceans. Completely self-sufficient for months at a time, they lie in wait, ready to watch, listen, intercept or attack wherever they may be needed, from the Mediterranean coast of Libya, to the ice caps of the Arctic. And should the UK be devastated by a nuclear strike, they might just be the last military force standing. Because of this they carry the Letter of Last Resort, a handwritten document from the Prime Minister outlining what form of action should be taken.
Award-winning journalist and bestselling author Danny Danziger has been allowed unprecedented access to one of the attack class submarines of the ‘silent service’, joining the crew on operations, living among them and hearing their stories. This book is the result of his experience, and provides a fascinating insight into the lives of those whose job it is to man the Uk’s most formidable weapons system. Unrestricted and uncompromising, it paints a vivid picture of this enigmatic branch of our armed forces.