Attack Submarine (SSK, SSN, SS). This designation is given to submarines such as the U.S. Los Angeles/688 class or Russian Akula class, whose primary mission is to attack and destroy enemy shipping. Such targets include submarines, warships and perhaps merchant shipping ("merchies", to submariners). In modern times, primarily used to seek out, destroy and deny areas to enemy submarines. The Soviet Union maintained an enormous fleet of attack submarines in an effort to threaten the Sea Lanes of Communication (SLOC, sometimes expanded to Sea Lanes of Control) connecting the United States to Europe. In the event of war, these submarines would surge from their bases in the Northern Fleet OpArea, and attempt to deny Allied shipping safe passage across the Atlantic to deploy and resupply NATO forces.