Mar. 15, 2000
When you were up nights fretting about leftovers from the Soviet arsenal, we bet you thinking about nuclear missles and perhaps a MiG or two falling into the hands of rogue states. You probably weren’t losing sleep over, say, killer communist dolphins.
During the Cold War, both the US and the Soviet Union trained marine mammals to detect mines and submarines, to carry explosives, and even to harpoon enemy divers. But times have changed, and Crimean authorities couldn’t afford to keep the mammals in fish, food supplements, and medicine. A squad including trained dolphins, Beluga whales, walruses, and sea lions from the Black Sea was recently sold to the Iran, where they’ll take up duties in the Persian Gulf.