A Brief History
On October 29, 1955, the Soviet Navy of the USSR suffered yet another in a long line of what we call “Naval Oops Moments” when the battleship Novorossiysk struck a World War II era naval mine and sank.
The Novorossiysk was the former Italian battleship Giulio Cesare, commissioned way back in 1914, but turned over to the Soviets after World War II. Ironically, the big ship was sunk in her own home harbor at Sevastopol, the Crimean headquarters of the Soviet Black Sea Fleet.
Sadly, 608 sailors died in the incident, and the ship was later raised and scrapped. In fact, old weapons such as land mines, naval mines, and unexploded bombs and shells are still killing innocent people. Today Sevastopol is part of the disputed Crimea, claimed by both Russia and Ukraine, and remains an important strategic asset in the Black Sea theater.
Question for students (and subscribers): Do you believe naval mines and land mines should be outlawed? Please let us know in the comments section below this article.
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For more information, please see…
Bagnasco, Erminio. Italian Battleships: ‘Conte di Cavour’ and ‘Duiio’ Classes 1911–1956. Naval Institute Press, 2021.
McLaughlin, Stephen. Russian and Soviet Battleships. Naval Institute Press, 2021.
The featured image in this article, a photograph, is a Ukrainian or Ukrainian SSR work and it is presently in the public domain in Ukraine, because it was published before January 1, 1951, and the creator (if known) died before that date (details).
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