Beginning of Third world war in the midst of the Cuban missile crisis in 1962 prevented personal bravery and prudence of captain in the U.S. air force who refused to comply.
This incident with reference to the edition of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, reports Lenta.ru.
The incidents took place on 28 October 1962 missile on four secret U.S. bases on the Japanese island of Okinawa. Because of the worsening relations between the USSR and the USA the level of combat readiness of troops was raised to red (DEFCON 2 — «on the brink of nuclear war»).
Managing the launch of captain William Bassett was ordered to launch four cruise missiles Mace B, equipped with thermonuclear bombs, the Mark 28 (blast yield of 1.1 megatons of TNT) range, allowing to hit Hanoi, Beijing, Pyongyang and Vladivostok.
The orders passed by radio, and the cipher coincided with what was in the secret envelope with instructions. The test confirmed the validity of the order. Similar reports received and other managers start officers on Okinawa.
However, opening a list of goals, Bassett found that three of the four goals are outside of the USSR – the most likely opponent. At the same moment he called another officer and told me that on his list — also two non-Soviet targets.
The suspicions of Bassett caused that level of alert was raised to DEFCON 1 («imminent nuclear war»). The captain admitted that Okinawa could become the first target of attack by Soviet missiles, and in the headquarters in the U.S. sent the fastest possible order, forgetting to raise the level of alert. However, no explosions on the base occurred.
Bassett then decided to stop training missiles for launch, called on the phone to the control center and lied that he had not received a clear order. In addition, the captain ordered two soldiers to shoot armed Lieutenant, who had his hand on the button, if he tries to launch the missiles without an oral order of a superior officer or official without increasing the level of alert to DEFCON 1.
Data on the exact content of the conversation of Bassett with the command point left, but officers eventually received an order to launch nuclear missiles. Captain in the categorical form has demanded from subordinates to remain silent about the incident.
Bassett died in 2011, without telling anyone about the incident. All information so far known from the words of his colleagues, pilot John Borgna, which this year the U.S. air force was allowed to bring the story public. Now journalists and scientists require from the authorities to declassify official documents relating to this incident.
Caribbean crisis is called intense political, diplomatic and military confrontation between the USSR and the USA in October 1962, which was caused by the secret transfer and accommodation in Cuba military units of Soviet army vehicles and weapons, including nuclear weapons.
In addition to the Cuban missile crisis, now aware of four cases of false positives of systems of missile attack warning. Two of them occurred in the USA, two in the USSR. All four incident lasted no more than ten minutes, had to make the difficult decisions, as in the case of this threat it was necessary to immediately initiate launch a counter strike before the enemy’s missiles managed to destroy a large part of the nuclear potential of the country.
In 1962 in Cuba broke out the Cuban missile crisis, in which the world was on the brink of nuclear war.
The crisis arose in a climate of confrontation due to the construction of the Berlin wall. The immediate cause of the crisis was the secret placement in Cuba of Soviet missiles with nuclear warheads. The operation was carried out secretly, on the personal order of the President of the Council of Ministers of the USSR Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev and with the consent of the Cuban leader Fidel Castro.
Khrushchev probably wanted thus to balance the nuclear superiority of the USA, as the numerical (estimates of the Minister of defence in the government of John Kennedy about 17-fold) and tactical (American missiles were deployed in the vicinity of the Soviet borders in Turkey). An important role was played by the desire of the Soviet leader to protect against a possible American attack on Cuba, in April 1961 reflected the landing at the Bay of pigs.
In the U.S. declassified case against a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union at the height of the Cuban missile crisis – media 28.10.2015