Lambert’s Political PredictionThose who have been politicians long enough, will be crooked. And while I am the subject, Stephen Hunter’s new book, “Targeted”  reprises Bob Lee Swagger (now mid-70’s) and approximations of Adam Schiff (D-CA) and Nancy Pelosi. (D-CA). It’s an entertaining – Book 12 in the series. Pelosi tries to take out Bob Lee (Sniper). No spoilers.

Hunter writes in a circle so that he has some deniability but it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see who he’s writing about. It’s not nearly the best in the Bob Lee Swagger universe, but it’s fun.


“I won’t be wronged, I won’t be insulted, and I won’t be laid a hand on. I don’t do these things to other people, and I require the same from them.”

–John Bernard Books played by John Wayne in THE SHOOTIST (1976)


The Russian Armada

A Russian amphibious assault flotilla is heading towards the English Channel and is expected to head for the Black Sea amid mounting tensions with Ukraine.

The great fmr Soviet Amphib fleet has set sail for the Black Sea to add political weight and get press coverage.  They weren’t doing anything in the Baltic and it aids the propaganda.

If they make a hard right turn and disgorge the Red Hoard on Brighton Beach, will the British be ready?


A New Russian Toy

According to information published by Tass on January 19, 2022, an unmanned torpedo-carrying ship capable of autonomously detecting and eliminating enemy submarines in distant waters and Arctic latitudes is being developed for the Russian Navy.

Russian Robot Sub Hunter

The robotic torpedo boat will be capable of both operating autonomously and being controlled by a small crew and also be remotely controlled by operators from a coastal center or from aboard a carrier ship of these drones, he said.

The 14-meter-long robotic boat will be capable of accelerating to over 35 knots, sailing in rough seas of up to six points, and operating for as long as three days without refueling. The robotic submarine killer will have an ammunition load of two 533mm multi-purpose electric torpedoes, the source specified.

But will it work in accomplishing area denial where the Russians need it in very rough seas and in the Arctic? I have strong doubts. On relatively flat water in the summer with some other platform carrying sensors – possibly.


Historical (K)Nots

The theory was a careless thief would re-tie a pilfered sea/ ditty bag with a reef knot, thereby leaving evidence of the crime.

The thieves’ knot is a knot that superficially looks like a square or reef knot and is therefore also called a false reef knot. However, there is a crucial difference: while in the reef knot the two loose ends are on one side, in the thief’s knot they are diagonally opposite. This means that the thief’s knot is not as easy to tie as the square knot.

The thief’s knot is one of the so-called slipknots; these are joke knots that give way under stress (fast or slow), i.e. “slip” and come loose. It was therefore used as a crude joke to hang the hammock of young sailors.



The Brandons go to the market and find only tofu remaining on the shelves.



Map of Shipwrecks in Ironbottom Sound, Guadalcanal. More than 50 allied and Japanese ships were sunk in World War 2 and are the final resting place of thousands of sailors from both sides.



  1. Must be a sub-scale prototype of the Russkie Robot in the pic. Does not look like a 50 foot boat, or 21″ torpedoes.

    Might be useful in certain circumstances.


    • Possibly (marginally) useful in harbor defense. Or places like Lake Ladoga. That looks like the abortion of a “minesweeper” that some LCS are supposed to carry someday. It reminds me of something a wag once said about some of our dopier designs or projects from the 1960s, that the best thing that came out of them is that the damn fool Soviets copied them.

      • It’s an ASW platform. Possibly an anti-SEAL Delivery Vehicle platform. They have to find the target.

        I admit that in places like the Black Sea, the Russians have good SOSUS to track the entry and exit of submarines, that can ping (active sonar) if there is a question. These boats could be dispatched to run out and launch fish based on that data.

  2. And the remote entry to the controllers can’t be hacked by outside parties?
    Or, a chip has extras hidden in it that bollix up the IFF?
    Say China hacks it and uses it to attack some USN ships?

    There’s that old saying about politicians serving two terms – one in office, and one in jail.
    Seems about right.

    • I don’t know what encryption equipment they have onboard. It takes some serious sensors or a towed array sonar to track modern submarines – which means size. It’s the same thing with the sea state. If you plan to operate in arctic or near arctic waters, it needs to be larger – even for near-harbor patrol. Kle says a prototype is pictured. Maybe.

      • Yes, it looks like the active sonar the pictured craft could possibly carry would be little more than a glorified fish-finder. A towed array would be useless. So much would be on the bottom that the drag would make it an effective anchor.

    • The Russians did the same thing with Obama, picturing him as a homosexual monkey. Our president and the executive branch is a laughing stock. What else can I say?

  3. This just in, Meatloaf (Marvin Lee Aday 1947-2020) died today. I enjoyed his songs, and his creative work. RIP.

    • RIP Meatloaf. He and Jim Steinman made a hell of a team.
      Home by Now:
      The thunder is rolling
      The sky is black
      It’s gotten so dark somehow
      There’s gonna be danger
      God, I wish we were back
      We should have been home by now
      No matter what they tell us
      No matter what they do
      No matter what they teach us
      What we believe is true
      No matter what they call us
      However they attack
      No matter where they take us
      We’ll find our own way back
      If only prayers were answered
      Then we would hear god say:
      No matter what they tell you
      No matter what they do
      No matter what they teach you
      What you believe is true
      And I will keep you safe and strong
      And sheltered from the storm

  4. Been tying the square knot since Boy Scouts (the good years of Scouting), had completely forgotten one of the leaders said “Don’t do it this way, it’ll slip”.

  5. ug! you should warn a fellow about the cryptkeeper’s mug on the header. nearly lost me breakfast….r.ip. meatloaf, a much underrated talent….putin proves once again that the grifters in dc will leave you high n dry. ukraine should have known better, but they were likely enjoying their cut. i have no pity for them. i just hope the grifters don’t get us nuked trying to squeeze another billion out of ukraine….schiff? lord help me, i hate that guy. the gop members of the intel committee he chairs are refusing to mask up and show their vax card. i’m waiting to see if he locks them out of the briefing. could be interesting. …the uk removed all covid restrictions all of a sudden. makes one wonder what they just found out.

  6. Just read this (Rep. Cuellar (D, Texas) has been a vocal critic of Biden’s open border policy that has seriously affected his Border district):

    “Texas Democratic Rep. Henry Cuellar’s Laredo home and campaign office were the subject of FBI activity Wednesday evening….”The FBI was present in the vicinity of Windridge Drive and Estate Drive in Laredo conducting court-authorized law enforcement activity,” FBI spokesperson Rosanne Hughes told ABC News. “The FBI cannot provide further comment on an ongoing investigation.” Local news reports showed members of the FBI’s Evidence Response Team at Cuellar’s campaign office as well. The FBI declined to provide specifics about the investigation. Local news reports say that boxes were seen being taken from the home.”

    The Gestapo is running open loop on anyone, even Representatives on the same team. Guess the “illegal search and seizure” or “due process” parts don’t apply to the Biden Administration.

    Special place in Hell…

    • The FBI are the secret police.

      They’ll pull him back into line with blackmail. If that doesn’t work, coercion of a different sort. If not that, prison

      • Was looking for another series after your’s (halfway through Loki’s Fire), Stephen Hunter’s ”Swagger series seems like a must read. Shooter is a top popcorn night selection.

  7. Is it Halloween already? That’s one scary photo up at the top.
    Always liked Hunter’s stuff. Looks like I’ll have to get that one.

  8. I had to stop at the Header of Nasty Pelosi.

    Did you ever watch Brazil, a dystopian sci-fi flick in which a member of the ruling elite gets a facelift? Who knew Nancy was on film?

    The hero, sadly, is tortured into an alternate reality and so escapes his tormentors in his mind. I’d like a more real world solution, tbh.

  9. Ironically, only ONE sub sunk there, and that was Japanese. Re the robo sub killer, it will HAVE to have an off board system controlling it. Not enough room or boat size for any usable sensors. Hunter is a good read. 🙂

    • Why didn’t the US fleet boats work the slot harder? We should have put more effort there in my opinion. I know they were busy sinking merchant shipping and at that stage in the war our torpedoes didn’t work. well – maybe they have a mulligan?

      • They worked it pretty hard, actually. Main problem was, that when the war was there, our sub torpedoes didn’t really work, yet. Another triumph for Rhode Island, that.

        Another thing is that I don’t think the underwater geography around Savo was favored by US submariners.

        Still, they got Kako, and IIRC a few smaller ships.


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