Code Name Lucy
Back in 1979 something odd happened in the southern sub-Antarctic Indian Ocean. On September 22nd, one of the orbiting US Vela Hotel spy satellites registered a double flash indicating that an atomic bomb had detonated close to the Prince Edward Island Group, 1,176 nautical miles south of Cape Town, belonging to South Africa.
The hunt was on for the South African nuclear weapons rumoured to be in existence and being tested there. In March 2010, one of the orbiting South African spy satellites picked up a flash report coming from a Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS) line of unknown origin in the same area. There should not be any such messages and it is very alarming. No one lives on Prince Edward Island. The nearby Marion Island has a weather station that is manned but neither they nor the South African Navy were aware of the SOSUS line.
From a military viewpoint, whoever controls that SOSUS line will control the Cape of Good Hope sea route, the major artery between East and West. If that line is activated and operating as it is designed to do, the West will automatically lose any future war. Everything depends on who controls the suspected SOSUS line, if it exists, and that is what Angelique Dawson and her team are trying to uncover and promptly deal with.
In Code Name Lucy, we take a hard look at the Chinese Navy, a real threat to the West and highly rated, make no mistake. They have good ships, good crews and excellent weapon systems - the Chinese Aegis destroyers will pick up and engage and destroy any F-22 / F-35 at 200 miles. We discuss the Roosevelt-Dreadnought Principle in this book - the conclusions are so bad that no Western news agency wished to publish it.
What the principle comes down to is history - the long-forgotten US Navy “White Fleet” being replaced and outclassed overnight by the arrival of the revolutionary HMS Dreadnought, the first battleship that looked and operated like a modern battleship with the main gun batteries in turrets fore and aft, powerful engines that made her fast and heavily armoured. That opened the doors to an arms race. Overnight the entire battle fleet of all the world’s navies was obsolete. Whoever could build the most “Dreadnoughts” would have naval supremacy. The Royal Navy won the arms race but the Imperial German Fleet came very close. As Winston Churchill believed: If you don’t have command of the seas, you are dead. No major power ever won a war in modern times without controlling the oceans and to control the choke points, SOSUS lines are used.
Angelique Dawson and her team are heading towards Prince Edward Island to search for evidence of the SOSUS line between Cape Town and Prince Edward Island. If they find one, the West’s sea route past the Cape of Good Hope will be cut during a time of war.
It is a frightening scenario, the West depends on sea routes for trade and food. Whoever controls the oceans, controls the war effort. What they find on the uninhabited island, there are no humans, but the presence of Chinese warships are worrying as well as two South African frigates and several unidentified submarines.
Whose SOSUS line had signalled from the cold waters where no SOSUS line should be in the first place. Is it possible to “activate” the line to a war footing?
Angelique Dawson certainly will try to do so and see who it attacks even if it starts a war, acting against the advice of her future soul and husband, former Police Special Forces Company Commander, Geoffrey Foxtrot, as well as the South African Navy flag captain. They know that when the SOSUS line goes active, it will attack whatever is seen as the enemy.
Code Name Lucy is the 28th book of the GMJ Series.