Anthony Wells

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Anthony R. Wells (born October 13, 1943) has been president and chief executive officer of TKC International LLC, a specialist technical services company supporting the US government, since May 1, 1992.[1] Wells is unique insofar as he is the only living person to have worked for British Intelligence as a British citizen and for US Intelligence as an American citizen.[1]

He developed relationships with sensitive parts of the US defense and intelligence community since he first served in Washington DC in the mid-1970s as a British Naval officer. He returned to the United States permanently in the early 1980s after the Falklands Conflict to work on programs to counter the Soviet Union and allies.[2] At the conclusion of the Cold War he formed a partnership on Capitol Hill with the William L. Dickinson, former member of the US House of Representatives from Alabama, and ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee, and Anthony R. Battista, a staff member of the HASC during the Cold War and the Reagan Administration.[2]

Wells standing next to his airplane.

Early life

Wells was born near Coventry, Warwickshire, England, where his grandfather, Frederick Wells, owned a precision gear manufacturing company, Coventry Gear, that provided critical materials to the British war effort during World War Two. He was educated at Bablake School, Coventry, St. Cuthbert’s Society at Durham University, (BA with honours and MA degree by research), King's College, University of London (PhD), and the London School of Economics, University of London (MSc).

Wells was called to the Bar as a Barrister by Lincoln's Inn in November, 1980. He received his basic naval training at Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth, advanced training at the School of Maritime Operations, and intelligence training with the UK's intelligence directorates. His mentors were Sir Harry Hinsley, the Bletchley Park code breaker, the Vice Chancellor of Cambridge University, Sir Lawrence Martin, at King's College, London, and Bryan Ranft at the Royal Naval College, Greenwich.

Wells was introduced to the special intelligence world by his mentors, and Hinsley through the Ultra material. Wells was unique in that he had access to Enigma material several years before the British government announced its existence in 1974. To this day he remains one of only a few living people knowledgeable of sensitive WWII data that the British have not released, particularly some relating to decisions made by Prime Minister Winston Churchill and President Franklin Roosevelt based on Enigma.[1][3][4]

Early career

Wells served in HM Ships Bulwark, Eastbourne, Fearless and Intrepid, and while in the Royal Navy served with the US Navy in the nuclear powered cruiser USS Bainbridge. Wells was the youngest senior lecturer and tutor in uniform at the Royal Naval College Greenwich during 1972-1974, as a newly promoted lieutenant commander teaching senior British and Commonwealth naval officers in the Staff and War Colleges, and junior officers in the Lieutenants Greenwich course and Special Duties Officer course.

He received a commendation from the US Chief of Naval Operations for his work with the US Navy which included leadership of the Sea War 85 program with Captain John Underwood, and for work on Soviet operations and specialist work on the Middle East. Wells was appointed Director of Special Programs as a commander in one of the UK's Intelligence DirectoratesTemplate:Which? and led sensitive programs associated with Soviet special operations, espionage and infiltration. He later became a specialist in Soviet programs seeking to gain equality with the West in submarine technology and operations, and attempts to thwart US and UK national deterrent systems and operations. Wells returned to the US permanently to continue this work.[1][3][5]

Later career

The 1980s saw Wells working in three areas: South West Asia, (principally Pakistan), South East Asia and East Asia. In Malaysia he was the technical advisor to the Chief Minister of Sabah and traveled with the former Foreign Minister of Malaysia, Tan Sri Ghazali Shafie and others on sensitive missions. At the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Wells and Richard Twogood led a critical program of the Cold War to both protect and enhance US strategic Asymmetric warfare (ASW) capabilities against the Soviet Union under the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Wells was a key part of a joint US-UK program in non-acoustic ASW; he initiated and led several other special programs that remain classified.[6][7][8]

In the 1990s, Wells helped integrate US national intelligence systems into a real-time Command, Control, Communications, Surveillance and Reconnaissance system to provide the military with real or near real time actionable intelligence. He was appointed the first technical director of Fleet Battle Experiments Alpha and Bravo in Third Fleet, in the US Pacific Fleet, working at sea in USS Coronado with the Fleet Commanders, Vice Admiral Herb Browne and Vice Admiral Denny McGinn. Wells helped develop new concepts of asymmetric warfare and real time targeting of fixed and moving targets. He flew two aircraft in classified exercises to demonstrate how aircraft could be used by terrorists to attack vital US targets. Wells also worked to create and develop the technology and systems that became the US Navy's Airborne Lidar Mine Detection System and the Rapid Airborne Mine Clearance System.[6][7][9][8]

In the 2000s, Wells was involved in post-9/11 actions, leading in various tagging, tacking and locating operations, working on WMD issues via innovative means. He traveled during this period and familiarized himself with the Middle East from the work he had done in the 1970s. Several classified Limited Objective Field Experiments were conducted with Wells as a lead player. He was the program manager with Vistasp Karbhari of the University of California for finding better field solutions to protect US personnel against suicide bombers and vehicular high explosive attacks – they successfully conducted tests at China Lake in California. Wells worked with the team led by the Director of the US Navy’s Counter Terrorism Center across multi-agency boundaries to plan and execute strikes against key terrorist targets.[6][7] In the 2010s, Wells was involved in the cyber world and back to his British roots in classical deception operations with modern technology.[2][6]

Earlier Wells had been nominated by the Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Duncan Hunter of California, as Assistant Secretary of the US Navy for Research Development and Acquisition, overseeing the Navy's acquisitions. Wells was selected by the White House from a list of contenders, but before his confirmation went to the Senate, he withdrew because of incompatibilities of his views with those of some members of the G.W. Bush administration, including the then-Chief of Naval Operations. Wells could also not accept several other policies, including controversial interrogation techniques employed by the administration against US prisoners.[2][6]

Other activities

Wells is the third Chairman of the USS Liberty Alliance, succeeding in 2013 Rear Admiral Clarence Hill and Admiral Thomas Moore, a former Chief of Naval Operations and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The USS Liberty is a US Navy spy ship that is the most highly-decorated Navy ship in a single action. Wells was made an honorary crew member in 2013 at a special ceremony by the surviving crew members of the USS Liberty and Veterans Association to honor his work in intelligence, research, analysis, and publications regarding the June War of 1967, and support for the USS Liberty cause.[9] In late 2013 Wells became the first chairman of Durham University’s North America Development Board, having served for several decades as a vice president of the North American Foundation for the University of Durham, focused on endowment for post-graduate research studentships and fellowships at Durham for American students.[10]

Wells has written extensively over the past six decades since his time as a postgraduate student. In addition to professional books and articles he has also published two novels, Black Gold Finale and The Golden Few. He was given a literary award from the Naval Submarine League in 2013.[4][6][7][9][8]

Wells has contributed to various public service activities, including being a life member and vice president for many years of The Plains, Virginia, Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company, and has been a National Ski Patrol member and instructor for four decades. He maintains his flying status as an FAA Certified Flight Instructor.[10][11][12][13]

Selected works and publications

  • German Public Opinion and Hitler’s Policies, 1933-39. 1968. Electronic version available at Durham University Library, UK – access www to Durham University Library and enter data base with title and/or author name. Electronic and hard copy versions available.
  • Studies in British Naval Intelligence, 1880-1945. 1972. Electronic version available via the www British Library (ETHOS), and also King’s College, London – www and then enter the data base with title and/or author name. Electronic and hard copy versions available. Also simply enter title, and by Anthony Roland Wells and a www edition is available on line.
  • Technical Change and British Naval Policy. Edited by Bryan Ranft, Hodder and Stoughton, London, 1977, and Holmes and Meier, New York, NY.
  • War and Society. Edited by Brian Bond and Ian Roy, Croom Helm, London, 1977, and Holmes and Meier, New York, NY.
  • Soviet Naval Diplomacy. Edited by B. Dismukes and J. McConnell, Pergamon Press, 1979.
  • The Soviet and Other Communist Navies. Edited by James George, Naval Institute Press, 1986.
  • Black Gold Finale. A novel. Dorrance Publishing Company, 2009.
  • The Golden Few. A novel. Dorrance Publishing Company, 2012.


  • "The 1967 June War: Soviet Naval Diplomacy and the Sixth Fleet - A Reappraisal". Center for Naval Analyses, Arlington, Virginia. Professional Paper 204, October 1977.
  • "Soviet Submarine Prospects 1985–2000". Submarine Review, January 1986.
  • "Presence and Military Strategies of the USSR in the Arctic". Quebec Center for International Relations, Laval University, 1986.
  • "Real Time Targeting: Myth or Reality". Proceedings of the United States Naval Institute, August, 2001.
  • "US Naval Power and the Pursuit of Peace in an Era of International Terrorism and Weapons of Mass Destruction". The Submarine Review, October 2002.
  • "They Did Not Die In Vain. USS Liberty Incident - Some Additional Perspectives". Proceedings of the United States Naval Institute, March, 2005
  • "The Royal Navy is Key to Britain's Security Strategy". Proceedings of the United States Naval Institute, December, 2010
  • "A Strategy in East Asia That Can Endure". Proceedings of the United States Naval Institute, May, 2011
  • "The United States Navy, Jordan, and a Long Term Israeli-Palestinian Security Agreement". The Submarine Review, Spring 2012
  • "Jordan, Israel, and US Need to Cooperate for Missile Defense". USNI News, March 26, 2013.


  • NATO and US Carrier Deployment Policies, Formation of a New Standing Naval Strike Force in NATO. Center for Naval Analyses, Arlington, Virginia, April 1977.
  • Overview Study of the Maritime Aspects of the Nuclear Balance in the European Theater (Department of Energy Study for the European Conflict Analysis Project). October 1986.
  • Soviet Submarine Warfare Strategy Assessment and Future US Submarine and Anti-Submarine Warfare Technologies (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, March 1988).
  • Distributed Data Analysis with Bayesian Networks: A Preliminary Study for Non-Proliferation of Radioactive Devices, December 2003 (with F. Dowla and G. Larson). The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, California, December 2003.
  • FIBER REINFORCED PUMICE PROTECTIVE BARRIERS – To Mitigate the Effects of Suicide and Truck Bombs. Final Report and Recommendations. United States Navy, Washington DC. With Professor Vistasp Kharbari, Professor of Structural Engineering, University of California, San Diego. August, 2006.
  • TACTICAL DECISION AID (TDA): Multi intelligence capability for National, Theater, and Tactical intelligence in real time across geographic space and time. The National Intelligence Community, Washington DC, May 2012.
  • SUBMARINE INDUSTRIAL BASE MODEL: Key industrial base model for the US VIRGINIA Class nuclear powered attack submarine, Principal Executive Officer Submarines, Washington Navy Yard, Washington DC, October 2012.


  • Astro-Navigation: A Programmed Course in 6 Volumes for Training UK and Commonwealth Naval Officers in the Use of Astronomical Navigation at Sea. Royal Navy, Ministry of Defence, UK, 1969.
  • The Battle of Trafalgar: A Programmed Course in one Volume in Naval Strategy and Tactics. Royal
  • Navy, Ministry Of Defence, 1969.
  • The Double Cross System: A Programmed Course In one Volume for British, Foreign and Commonwealth Naval Officers Attending the Royal Naval Staff College, Greenwich, UK. Royal Navy, Ministry Of Defence, 1973.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 The Navy Lists (UK) 1964-1983 (Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, London).
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "TKC Global LLC". 
  3. 3.0 3.1 The London Gazette records for Royal Navy Appointments, Promotions, and RetirementsTemplate:Full citation needed
  4. 4.0 4.1 Durham University Library, King’s College, London Library, and the British Library (ETHOS). On line.Template:Full citation needed
  5. The Bar of England and Wales – Bar Council and Bar Directory. On lineTemplate:Full citation needed
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 The Middleburg Eccentric newspaper. On line records.Template:Full citation needed
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Proceedings of the US Naval Institute, The Submarine Review, The Naval Review, National Defense, Dorrance Publishing Company, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.Template:Full citation needed
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 The Submarine League. Web SiteTemplate:Full citation needed
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 "USS Liberty Documents". 
  10. 10.0 10.1 "DunelmUSA : Anthony Wells - Durham University". 
  11. National Ski Patrol Headquarters, Lakewood, Colorado.Template:Full citation needed
  12. Federal Aviation Administration, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.Template:Full citation needed
  13. "The Plains Fire and Rescue". 

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