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George P. Sotos

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Captain George P. Sotos, USN (ret.), “as the first commanding officer of the massive underground Fleet Operations Control Center at Kunia, Hawaii, and, subsequently, as the head of planning and design of the command and control systems for the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 1965 to 1970, Captain Sotos is uniquely qualified to write a story about strategic command and control systems for nuclear warfare.


Captain George P. Sotos extensive sea duty includes command of  two Destroyer Escorts, a Destroyer, a squadron of nine Destroyer Escort Radar ships, a Landing Ship Dock and  a Fleet Oiler. He is a graduate of the Naval War College. and a former director of the Department of Defense Computer Institute, which later became part of the National War College.


His decorations include the Presidential Unit Citation for outstanding performance in combat on an escort vessel; the Meritorious Service Medal for superior initiative and outstanding leadership in meeting the Joint Chiefs of Staff requirements for a command and control system; and Legion of Merit for outstanding service as Director of the Department of Defense Computer Institute.


Captain George P. Sotos retired from the Navy in 1972 after over thirty-one years of service.  He is the author of Plateau of Chains.


One reader of Plateau of Chains said, it “is a tense drama that might actually have happened during the cold war. The story takes place at the time of the Cuban missile crisis. In an underground bunker in Hawaii a practice nuclear attack message is transmitted to the Navy fleet as the real thing. How could such a thing have happened? Who could have been responsible? Was it the commander of the cave? Did the attack get called off in time? Was it an honest mistake or an enemy plot to start World War III? These and other questions in this fast-paced book are answered in a spell binding, fast paced manner. This story could only have been told by a Navy officer who worked in that cave and could have experienced a similar scenario. That officer was the author, Capt. George Sotos, USN Retired. The big question remains: If this really happened, did the Pentagon know about? And if it did, why has this near catastrophe been kept a secret for so long?”

Plateau of Chains
George P. Sotos  More Info

According to the book Description of Plateau of Chains, “A routine war game at the Naval War College erupts into an all out nuclear war between the Soviet Union and the United States – even though the civilian leader of neither country gave orders to launch nuclear weapons.

The Naval War College chief of staff, Rear Admiral Adelide Lord, is incensed at this complete disregard for the authority of established civilian leaders demonstrated by the war game leaders.  He is further enraged  when Commander John A. Lucas, USN, the  officer responsible for and initiating the world wide nuclear conflagration, convinces the large student body that the command and control system is defective and his decision to launch nuclear weapons without  permission of the nation’s civilian leader was correct.

Shocked and horrified at the mutinous conduct of the elite student body, Admiral Lord berates the entire class and accuses Lucas of inciting them to treason. Suspecting to find a history of disregard for authority, Admiral Lord orders a secret investigation of Lucas, and is astonished when, almost immediately, the investigation uncovers Lucas’ culpability in an unreported wrongful death of a naval officer.


But, because the investigation also places Admiral Lord in jeopardy it is dropped completely, only to be discovered 15 years later by the Naval Investigative Service (NIS) during a background investigation (BI) on Lucas, prior to his appointment to a prestigious White House job.  Hungry for more dirt, the NIS digs further into Lucas’ past. His tour as the first commanding officer of the super-secret underground Kunia Command Center, where he was astride of the “execute” message for nuclear warfare in the Pacific, is carefully sifted. Also, his five year tour as head of planning and design of the Command and Control system for the Joint Chiefs of Staff is examined in detail; as is his friendship with the skipper of a Soviet Destroyer that shadowed the Sixth Fleet when Lucas  commanded a Destroyer attached to that fleet.


Not only does the NIS convince the reluctant Chief of Naval Operations to deny Lucas the security clearance needed for the White House job, the NIS prepares to bring him to trial and put him in jail. Just when all the cards are stacked against Lucas, an old War College friend, a General in the Air force, learns of Lucas’ problems and contacts the Chief of Naval Operations. At that point, the story takes a dramatic, surprising and unexpected turn as the General weighs in heavily on the contents of the background investigation.”

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