At a Bethesda, Maryland, officers’ club party in December 1974, a Soviet naval attaché told a U.S. naval officer it was known that the United States had tried to raise the Soviet submarine K-129. He added: “If you go back there it would mean war.” Project Azorian—mistakenly called Project Jennifer in the press—had secretly raised part of the submarine the previous August.1
When the ballistic-missile submarine had failed to make scheduled communications checks, the Soviets instituted a massive search along the K-129’s presumed track and operating area. The search, with submarines, surface ships, and land-based aircraft, failed to find any trace of the missing craft.
1. RADM Edward D. Sheafer Jr., USN (Ret.), discussion with author, 13 September 2010. Sheafer was Director of Naval Intelligence from August 1991 to September 1994.
2. Michael White’s film Azorian: The Raising of the K-129 presents a graphic account of the salvage; see www.projectjennifer.at.