In 1968, a U.S. Navy Attack Submarine Exploded Underwater. No One Knows Why.

    Kyle Mizokami

    Security,

    A tragedy for the U.S. Navy’s silent service. 

    The conspiracy theory is that the Scorpion was somehow caught up in some kind of Cold War skirmish, and that the Soviet flotilla had sunk the sub. An unusually high number of submarines were sunk in 1968, including the Israeli submarine Dakar, the French submarine Minerve, and the Soviet submarine K-129. According to conspiracy theorists, the Cold War had briefly turned hot under the waves, leading to the loss of several submarines. Unfortunately, there is no actual proof, nor an explanation for why a Soviet task force with only two combatants could manage to kill the relatively advanced Scorpion.

    In May 1968, a U.S. nuclear-powered attack submarine was sent on a secret mission to spy on the Soviet navy. Seven days later, with the families of the crew waiting dockside for the USS Scorpion to return from a three-month patrol, the U.S. Navy realized that the submarine was missing. Scorpion had been the victim of a mysterious accident, the nature of which is debated to this day.

    The USS Scorpion was a Skipjack-class nuclear attack submarine. It was one of the first American submarines with a teardrop-shaped hull, as opposed to the blockier hull of World War II submarines and their descendants. It was laid down in August 1958 and commissioned into service in July 1960.

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