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By Clive Cussler, Dirk Cussler

It's the maximum boost in American safeguard know-how in decades—an assault submarine in a position to tremendous underwater speeds. there's just one challenge: A key component of the prototype is missing—and the guy who built it really is dead.

At an analogous time, ships have began vanishing mid-ocean, often by no means to be came across back, but if they're, occasionally our bodies are chanced on aboard…burned to a crisp. what's going? And what does it need to do with an Italian submarine that vanished in 1943? Or did it?

It is as much as NUMA director Dirk Pitt and his group, aided by way of a gorgeous NCIS agent and via Pitt’s teenagers, Dirk, Jr., and summer season, to move on a determined overseas chase to discover the reality. yet what they detect is a far, a lot higher chance than even they imagined…

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It wasn’t aimed toward Pitt, despite the fact that, yet on the ground. Pitt took a step toward see that Gomez was once aiming the weapon at Giordino, who lay at the ground, clutching his leg. “Put down your weapon,” Gomez acknowledged, “or you either shall die. ” Pitt stuck a stream out of the nook of his eye. the sooner gunman had materialized from at the back of one other console, his AK-47 geared toward Pitt’s again. As Pitt appeared from his wounded good friend to Gomez, his eyes flared with anger. with no observe, he allow the gun fall to the deck. 39 THE PRESIDENT ROLLED AN UNLIT CIGAR among his thumb and forefinger. “Why? ” he requested in an aggravated tone. “Why might the chinese language without notice halt all exports of infrequent earth components? ” An uncomfortable silence crammed the Oval workplace. “I can simply suspect it’s for leverage,” the Secretary of nation acknowledged. “Something they could use as a bargaining chip to counter our strain on their aid of alternate with Iran or their refusal to drift the yuan. ” “Have they advised you as a lot? ” “No, the overseas Ministry has basically indicated it used to be performed out of ‘strategic necessity. ’” “Sure,” stated vp Sandecker. “The necessity to torpedo our economic system. ” A cigar aficionado himself, he eyed the President’s stogie with envy. “It is kind of a daring move,” the Secretary of nation acknowledged. “I may have anticipated a few trace of negotiation over the problem, however the chinese language are enjoying it on the subject of the vest. ” The President became to his nationwide safeguard consultant, a raven-haired girl named Dietrich. “How undesirable is it going to harm us? ” “Over 90 percentage of our infrequent earth imports come from China,” she stated. “Commercially, it is going to devastate a couple of industries, relatively electronics and the choice power fields. nearly each high-tech within the state can be affected. ” “Are we simply conversing larger costs? ” requested Tom Cerny. “Skyrocketing costs can be simply the 1st impression. till work-arounds will be constructed, items might be in brief supply—or easily unaffordable. both approach, call for will evaporate, and jobs in addition to it. it might probably simply force the economic system again right into a severe recession. ” “What approximately different resources of infrequent earth? ” the President requested. “I be aware of we’ve obtained that mine in California. inform me the chinese language aren’t the one online game on the town. ” “The Mountain go Mine got here online many years in the past and used to be simply ramping up their production,” Dietrich acknowledged, “but a contemporary hearth on the facility destroyed the mine’s extraction operations. It’s successfully closed for an indeterminate interval, most likely years. That was once our simply household resource. ” “Has someone seemed into the reason for the fireplace? ” Sandecker requested. “It was once believed to were unintended, yet now the vendors have referred to as within the FBI to determine if it will probably were arson. ” “How approximately different overseas assets of infrequent earth? ” the President requested. “We do resource a fragment of our imports past China,” Dietrich stated. “Australia has been the first backup, with extra smaller quantities from Russia, India, and Malaysia.

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