Saturday, 28 September 2013

The man who saved the world

The early hours of 12 September 1983.  Stanislav Petrov, a civilian in a military system, is on duty monitoring the USSR’s nuclear war early-warning system. The computer registers an incoming US missile strike. The siren howls. His screen lights up and flashes the peremptory order ‘Launch it’. Petrov is under default order to press the button. He has to act. What should he do?

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