By Tom Clancy, Peter Telep
Tom Clancy, the grasp of overseas intrigue and explosive motion, introduces a brand new hero for a brand new period of warfare-against a brand new type of threat.
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Extra resources for Against All Enemies
Immediately an SA-2 missile was fired. This time the missilemen's eyes were wide open—and the Soviets were lucky. A fireball exploded behind Powers, damaging the U-2's tail and wings but leaving the cockpit unharmed. At the air defense facility below, the small dot on the radar began to blink. The plane was breaking up. " Powers gasped. He felt a dull thump and a tremendous orange flash filled the cockpit. As his plane began to dip toward the ground from 70,500 feet, on the very edge of space, Powers fought for control.
At an NSA listening post in Turkey, intercept operators began picking up some worrisome signals. For more than four hours they had been eavesdropping on Soviet radar installations as the Russians tracked Powers's U-2 flight. It had long been one of NSA's neatest tricks. Because radar signals travel in a straight line and the earth is curved, it was impossible for American radar stations outside Russia to detect air activity deep within the country. However, Soviet radar installations throughout the country communicated with each other over high-frequency circuits.
Nearly a dozen hours after it began, the massed overflight ended when the spy planes touched down at Eielson Air Force Base in Alaska. Within minutes of the landing, the recording tapes were sent by a special courier flight to NSA for analysis. They revealed no Soviet radar signals—proof that, at least for the time being, Russia was blind to an over-the-pole attack by American nuclear bombers. The vast sweep of frozen tundra making up Russia's northern frontier was virtually radar38 free. Nevertheless, no one dared speculate on how the mission might have ended if hidden Soviet radar installations had picked up the incoming bombers and believed that they were sent on an American surprise attack.