73 Years Ago Today: SAC Transport with Nuclear Secrets and Mysterious Cargo Crashes in Atlantic. Then it Gets Weird.

C-124A Globemaster II


C-124A Globemaster II
Douglas C-124A Globemaster II 49-244 in January 1951. (Picture credit score: through Don Wagner)

A Determined Plea for Assist. A Terrifying Survival Ordeal. A Weird Disappearance, and the Strangest Chilly Battle Thriller You’ve By no means Heard Of.

It began out as a seemingly routine Strategic Air Command transport flight throughout the Atlantic. Then it grew to become an alarming inflight emergency. After which, a harrowing survival ordeal. Nevertheless it ended with the disappearance of America’s largest cargo aircraft and each survivor on board- together with a person who held America’s nuclear secrets and techniques. All with out rationalization. What occurred within the weird lack of USAF C-124A Globemaster II plane quantity 49-0244 on March 23, 1951?

We’ll doubtless by no means know. And that could be on goal.

This isn’t the abstract of a Cold War paperback spy thriller. It isn’t a fictional plot hatched by Tom Clancy, Ian Fleming or Alistair MacLean. This actually occurred. And whereas Chilly Battle historical past is rife with factual tales of “broken arrow” misplaced nukes, spy-pilot prisoner swaps and true-life espionage, one thing concerning the mysterious disappearance of plane 49-0244 continues to itch at our nationwide conscience.

An official picture of Captain Walter A Wagner Jr., pilot of C-124A Globemaster II #4-9244, that disappeared after crashing on March 23, 1951. (Photograph: U.S Air Drive archives)

“There have been 53 survivors, they have been noticed in rafts. The following day they disappeared. I’ve been stonewalled. I do know there’s one thing hidden”, mentioned retired U.S. Air Drive Grasp Sgt. Keith Amsden, the brother of Robert Amsden, a flight engineer on the USAF C-124A Globemaster II strategic heavy transport plane that crashed within the Atlantic on March 23, 1951.

The plane was noticed floating on the floor with survivors in rafts by search and rescue crews. Survivors included Brigadier Common Paul Thomas Cullen, who had directed photographic operations throughout American nuclear bomb exams at Bikini Atoll.

Archive picture of USAF Brig. Gen. Paul T. Cullen (proper, in uniform) taken on November 16, 1949. (Photograph: Archive Photograph from Shreveport Occasions)

Stories from the crash point out different vital members of the Strategic Air Command onboard 49-0244 together with Col. Kenneth N. Grey, Lt. Col. James I. Hopkins Jr., Lt. Col. Edwin A. McKoy and Maj. Gordon H. Stoddard, the entire Strategic Air Command’s seventh Air Division. The SAC seventh Air Division managed the B-47 Stratojet nuclear-armed strategic bombers within the European theater.

Inventory picture of USAF Col. Paul T. Cullen. Cullen was the highest aerial reconnaissance subject material knowledgeable and vice-commander of the 2nd Air Drive when he disappeared within the crash of Douglas C-124A Globemaster II, #4-9244, on March 23, 1951. (Photograph: U.S. Air Drive Archive)

Compelled again to base due to low gas, the search planes would return hours later. They discovered nothing. Life rafts, survivors, and almost the entire particles from the biggest operational cargo aircraft of the period, all vanished with no hint. How?

“They discovered one thing,” Robert Amsden advised investigative reporter John Andrew Prime of the Gannett Information Company for a July 6, 2015 article printed on The Daily Advertiser. Amsden went on to say:

“I believe it was a damaged arrow. No one needs to the touch this factor. They’re scared to loss of life of it and I don’t know why. I firmly now imagine they have been carrying a nuclear weapon”.

It’s handy to dismiss Keith Amsden’s concept of mysterious nuclear weapons cargo onboard the C-124A when it crashed. He has no proof. There was no follow-up to help his concept. A Freedom of Info Act launch of data sheds no gentle past official statements on pages too pale to learn. However dismissing Amsden’s perception that one thing else was occurring when 49-0244 went down within the Atlantic raises extra questions than it solutions. It’s simpler to imagine that one thing bizarre occurred than it’s to purchase into the official narrative of a spontaneous onboard cargo hearth, a quick misery name, a textbook open ocean ditching, then… nothing.

These being the details of the matter, it appears conspirational to recommend that the flight may very well have had nuclear weapons onboard, was hijacked or sabotaged, ditched within the open ocean, solely to have its cargo and excessive worth passengers snatched by one of many Soviet submarines or floor vessels that have been verified to have been within the neighborhood on the time of the incident. These conspiracy theories appear far-fetched.

However then there’s The Be aware.

In 2006, a e-book titled, “Cleared for Catastrophe: Eire’s Most Horrific Air Crashes” was posthumously launched after the loss of life of creator and aviation knowledgeable Michael O’Toole. In his e-book, O’Toole recounts an incident when a farmer named “John Faherty” in County Galway on Eire’s west coast discovered a sealed metallic tin washed up on the seashore. Inside this tin was a word. The word learn:

“Globemaster alters course for no cause. We’re going north. Need to watch out. We’re beneath surveillance. Items of wreckage can be discovered however aren’t of G-master. A horrible drama is being enacted on this liner.”

In response to the July 8, 2015 article in Shreveport Occasions by John Andrew Prime of Gannett, “The word was turned over to the authorities and has since disappeared. It was referred to within the accident report however not copied.”

A newspaper clipping displaying Gen. Roger Ramey (left) and (then) Col. Paul T. Cullen (proper) on the Kwajalein Atoll nuclear weapons check website within the late Forties. (Photograph: U.S Air Drive archives)

A 1961 spy novel by Ian Fleming, Thunderball, advised the fictional story of an RAF Vulcan bomber with two nuclear bombs on board. In his novel and smash-hit 1965 Hollywood blockbuster starring Sean Connery as Agent 007, James Bond, creator Ian Fleming imagines a worldwide felony community, SPECTRE, that substitutes an imposter pilot on a nuclear-armed Vulcan and crashes it into the ocean. The bombs are recovered underwater and held for ransom in a world nuclear terror plot.

It’s potential, doubtless even, that Fleming could have been impressed by the crash of 49-0244 ten years previous to concoct the fictional plot of Thunderball. The C-124 Globemaster II, doubtless even this particular Globemaster II, was the first heavy air transport for reside nuclear weapons in March, 1951.

Creator and aristocratic bon vivant Ian Fleming was, in reality, deeply related to the real-world intelligence group. In Could, 1939, Fleming was recruited to turn into the non-public assistant of Rear Admiral John Godfrey, then-Director of Naval Intelligence for the British. Fleming was issued the codename, “17F”. Due to his aptitude and charisma, Ian Fleming was quickly promoted to Lieutenant Commander, although Fleming was mentioned to have, “No actual naval expertise”. Virtually instantly, Fleming grew to become liaison to the extremely secretive Secret Intelligence Service, or MI6. He moved simply among the many inside circle of counter espionage and innocently labelled, “Mixed Operations”, a deep-cover operational spy unit. And eventually, Fleming had entry to reams of extremely categorised information and case research which have by no means seen the sunshine of day.

It’s admittedly far-fetched to attempt to make any connection between the outrageous plot traces of Ian Fleming’s fantasy James Bond thrillers and actuality. Or is it?

In 1977, United Artists launched the tenth James Bond movie titled, The Spy Who Beloved Me. The film’s plot featured the fully implausible idea of a pretend ocean going supertanker ship snatching nuclear submarines from the ocean, storing them in its hull, and taking them hostage.

However in 1974, an actual ship named the GSF Explorer (previously, the Hughes Glomar Explorer) had used a big undersea claw to seize the key Soviet nuclear armed submarine Okay-129 that had mysteriously sunk within the Pacific 1,560 miles northwest of Hawaii. The CIA had developed an outrageous plan to boost the submarine for intelligence functions. The GSF Explorer’s cowl story was a, “mining and sea ground exploration ship”.

Immediately, one other ridiculous plotline of a males’s fantasy James Bond thriller, isn’t so ridiculous in spite of everything.

What finally occurred with the investigation into the lack of USAF C-124A Globemaster II plane quantity 49-0244 on March 23, 1951? The brief reply is, nothing.

C-124A at Pima Air & Area Museum, Tucson AZ – USA, August 1991 (Picture credit score: Andrew Thomas through Wiki)

The whole affair stays a thriller largely unknown and solely often revisited by aviation lovers and investigative reporters digging for a unique approach on an previous story yearly when March 23 comes round.

Tom Demerly is a characteristic author, journalist, photographer and editorialist who has written articles which are printed world wide on TheAviationist.com, TACAIRNET.com, Exterior journal, Enterprise Insider, We Are The Mighty, The Dearborn Press & Information, Nationwide Curiosity, Russia’s authorities media outlet Sputnik, and plenty of different publications. Demerly studied journalism at Henry Ford School in Dearborn, Michigan. Tom Demerly served in an intelligence gathering unit as a member of the U.S. Military and Michigan Nationwide Guard. His navy expertise consists of being Honor Graduate from the U.S. Military Infantry Faculty at Ft. Benning, Georgia (Cycle C-6-1) and as a Scout Observer in a reconnaissance unit, Firm “F”, 425th INF (RANGER/AIRBORNE), Lengthy Vary Surveillance Unit (LRSU). Demerly is an skilled parachutist, holds superior SCUBA certifications, has climbed the very best mountains on three continents and visited all seven continents and has flown a number of sorts of gentle plane.


Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *