After the Chinese fleet sunk a US destroyer, Chandler must blow up the third after rescuing the survivors and useful content. Its demoralized captain Joseph Meylan just wants to return home, Chandler to complete the mission regardless of losses. He jumps at the chance when the White House suddenly orders Chandler arrested for 'invading a foreign power' and more absurd charges within Michener's orders. Greene's wife is finding out the heard way, but can only tell the ever-suspicious renegade reporter Jacob Barnes, that the new president Oliver is a puppet of the remaining regional leaders after two others were killed for opposing a coup plan in full covert execution, with the press secretary as mole. While Chandler insists on a court martial he can't win, Slattery and others prepare skillfully to overpower the 'Washington loyal' crewmen.