The Russian invasion of Ukraine has once again raised the specter of nuclear war as President Vladimir Putin’s state struggles with support for Ukraine from the US and its Western allies.
While foreign aid, including US military equipment, has poured into the country, Russia has kept out the threat of nuclear weapons while its forces struggled to achieve their goals.
Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev last week warned of the risk of “full-blown nuclear war” in the event of a conflict between Russia and the West, while Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy earlier said Russia was using the threat to “blackmail the world.” .”
Many Americans are old enough to remember the looming threat of nuclear conflict during the Cold War, when the US government made plans for the continued functioning of the state in the event of a nuclear attack by the former Soviet Union.
Although many aspects of a US nuclear response are understandably classified, a facility in Liberty Township in Adams County, Pennsylvania could play a key role.
The Raven Rock Mountain Complex has often been referred to as the “underground Pentagon,” and it is believed that the US government would operate from this complex if the nation’s capital faced a devastating attack.
In 2019, Russian state television included Fort Richie in Maryland in a map of potential military targets that also included the Pentagon and Camp David. This seemed puzzling since Fort Richie had closed in 1998. Fox News speculated at the time that the closeness to Raven Rock was the reason for the inclusion.
A presenter on Russian state television recently refused to apologize for broadcasting a graphic depicting a nuclear attack that would destroy Britain and Ireland, calling the destruction of Ireland, a traditionally neutral nation, “collateral damage”.
That kind of rhetoric could give new meaning to institutions like Raven Rock.
Raven Rock, also called “Site R”, was built in the early 1950s. It was also reportedly called “Harry’s Hole” after then-President Harry S. Truman, who ordered two atomic bombs dropped on Japan in the first nuclear strike in history.
Former Vice President Dick Cheney reportedly spent time at the facility after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. This suggests that President Joe Biden could operate out of Raven Rock if the situation became desperate.
The Pittsburgh Press reported back in 1991 that the “enormous 260,000-square-foot bunker was the brainchild” of former President Truman, who had it built in 1949.
In 2018, Robert Stanley, the mayor of Fairfield, Pennsylvania, told Fox 43 that “most people have no idea what’s inside.” Fairfield is a neighborhood near the classified site.
Garrett Graff is a journalist and author of the 2017 book Raven Rock: The Story of the US Government’s Secret Plan to Save Itself – While the Rest of Us Die. The year his book was published, he spoke to PhillyVoice about the mountain complex.
“Raven Rock is where nuclear war would begin in the United States,” Graff said.
Graff told NPR in 2017, “Raven Rock is this massive, hollowed-out mountain. It’s a free-standing city… with individual buildings, three-story buildings built into this mountain. It has everything a small town would need – there is a fire department, there is a police force, medical facilities, dining halls.”
“The restaurant serves four meals a day, it’s a 24-hour establishment, and it was mothballed to some extent in the 1990s when the Cold War ended, then expanded in the last 15 years after the 11 and can now accommodate up to 5,000 people in an emergency,” he said.
Below the mountain top
Investigative journalist Eric Schlosser wrote about Raven Rock in his 2013 book Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Security.
Schlosser wrote that the complex was “about half a mile inside Raven Rock and another half mile below the mountaintop. It had power plants, underground water reservoirs, a small chapel, clusters of three-story buildings in huge caves, and enough beds to house two thousand senior officials from the Pentagon, State Department, and National Security Council.”
The Raven Rock Mountain Complex received $45 million in federal funding in 2018 and remains an operational military facility to this day.
Upon reaching news week Commenting on Raven Rock, a Department of Defense spokesman said in a statement, “The Raven Rock Mountain Complex supports the Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and other DOD officials and enables essential DOD functions to be performed during emergencies.”
https://www.newsweek.com/inside-raven-rock-mountain-complex-joe-biden-bunker-nuclear-war-1706380 In the Raven Rock Mountain Complex, Biden’s bunker in the face of nuclear war