Howard Hughes, the CIA and a mysterious ship and the Spruce Goose

Comment by Jim Campbell

October 22nd. 2020

Howard Hughes, in full Howard Robard Hughes, Jr., (born December 24, 1905, Houston, Texas, U.S.—died April 5, 1976, in an airplane over southern Texas), American manufacturer, aviator, and motion-picture producer and director who acquired enormous wealth and celebrity from his various ventures but was perhaps better known for his eccentricities, especially his reclusiveness. Entire Biography Here.

Chronicle Vault

Among them he was a germaphobe

The San Francisco Chronicle

Bill Van Niekerken

Nov. 7, 2016

Glomar Explorer at the Bay Bridge.   Photographer John O'Hara, June 1 1978.
1of29Glomar Explorer at the Bay Bridge. Photographer John O’Hara, June 1 1978.Photo: John O’Hara, The Chronicle
Glomar Explorer off the coast of Hawaii in  August 1974, is a deep sea  research vessel owned by Howard Hughes, under the sponsorship of the CIA was used in an attempt to raise a Russian submarine, which sunk in 1968 AP Photo dated 03/18/1975
2of29Glomar Explorer off the coast of Hawaii in August 1974, is a deep sea research vessel owned by Howard Hughes, under the sponsorship of the CIA was used in an attempt to raise a Russian submarine, which sunk in 1968 AP Photo dated 03/18/1975
Glomar Explorer off the coast of Catalina Island during a secret sea trial,  is a deep sea research vessel owned by Howard Hughes, under the sponsorship of the CIA was used in an attempt to raise a Russian submarine, which sunk in 1968 AP Photo dated 08/29/1975
3of29Glomar Explorer off the coast of Catalina Island during a secret sea trial, is a deep sea research vessel owned by Howard Hughes, under the sponsorship of the CIA was used in an attempt to raise a Russian submarine, which sunk in 1968 AP Photo dated 08/29/1975

International secrecy. A Soviet submarine. Howard Hughes. The CIA. This story wasn’t short on intrigue.

The Glomar Explorer was a giant vessel ostensibly built by the reclusive Hughes that was shrouded in mystery and speculation in the mid-1970s.

This story of intrigue seemed to start innocently enough.

The Chronicle ran a story on Nov. 21, 1972, announcing that Hughes had established a research base in Redwood City in preparation for a “highly imaginative assault on the mineral-rich ocean floor.”

The Spruce Goose is at the Evergreen Meuseum in MC Minnville, Oregon.

That story, it turns out, was a complete fabrication. The CIA had masterminded a fantastical backstory figuratively as large as the Explorer and its barge.

The public was riveted.

On Jan. 7, 1974, The Chronicle reported on the departure of the Glomar.

The destination? That was a secret.

“I can tell you one thing, it’s heavily guarded,” said tugboat pilot Bill Hildreth. “Surveillance cameras follow anyone who approaches the barge, and guards with big pistols walk beside you on board.”

The tugboat pilot was tight-lipped on details, however: “You’ll have to call Howard Hughes for the rest,” he said.

A year later, on March 19, 1975, the true mission of the Glomar Explorer and its barge would be revealed to the public. The CIA spent $500 million to finance Project Azorian, the construction of vessels for a mission to salvage a Soviet nuclear-equipped submarine that had sunk in 1968 off the coast of Hawaii.

The sub had exploded under mysterious circumstances and sank to the floor more than 3 miles below the ocean’s surface.

The Glomar lifted the submarine, but the sub broke to pieces during the mission. The section that was lifted onto the ship contained nuclear torpedoes and the bodies of Soviet sailors, but much of the military bounty was lost to the waves.

After this top-secret mission, the Glomar Explorer would spend a few years as part of the Mothball Fleet in Suisun Bay, until 1978, when the ship got a million-dollar retrofit by Lockheed Missiles & Space Co. of Sunnyvale, to be used for underwater mining.

In 1981, current Chronicle Science Editor David Perlman got a tour of the ship and reported on its conversion to a floating drilling platform.

It would be able to lower equipment through 13,000 feet of water and drill an additional 20,000 feet into the Earth’s crust.

At the end of the drilling mission, the Glomar returned to the Bay Area Mothball Fleet until 1996, when Astoria Metal Corp. spent $150 million to convert it into a new floating oil drilling platform.

Its last known post was in China.

The Glomar’s barge remains in the Bay Area, with Bay Ship & Yacht Co. of Alameda having converted it to the only dry dock on the West Coast to be fully enclosed by a retractable roof.

After 30 years of stonewalling, the CIA released documents in 2010 that confirmed Project Azorian. Still, much of the Glomar mission remains a mystery.

THE END

About JCscuba

I am firmly devoted to bringing you the truth and the stories that the mainstream media ignores. This site covers politics with a fiscally conservative, deplores Sharia driven Islam, and uses lots of humor to spiceup your day. Together we can restore our constitutional republic to what the founding fathers envisioned and fight back against the progressive movement. Obama nearly destroyed our country economically, militarily coupled with his racism he set us further on the march to becoming a Socialist State. Now it's up to President Trump to restore America to prominence. Republicans who refuse to go along with most of his agenda RINOs must be forced to walk the plank, they are RINOs and little else. Please subscribe at the top right and pass this along to your friends, Thank's I'm J.C. and I run the circus
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