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On 26 September 1983, Stanislav Petrov, an officer
in the Soviet Air Defense Forces, received an alert
that five nuclear missiles had been launched from an
American base against the Soviet Union. Rightly
assuming it was a false alarm, Petrov did not launch
a retaliatory attack, thereby averting an all-out
nuclear war. He died in 2017 at age 77.
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  • 1159 comments

    • This is true! The alarm sounded during one of the tensest periods in the Cold War. Three weeks earlier, the Soviets had shot down a Korean Air Lines commercial flight after it crossed into Soviet airspace, kiIIing all 269 people on board. His inaction definitely changed history.
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    • Christ one wrong decision and bye bye world and hello fallout
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    • This man saved the world
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    • Vasili arkipov singlehandedly saved humanity and all life on earth And yet he is barely talked about. It's sad really, because this man is a class act for what he did.
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    • I believe that nukes actually bring world peace in a weird way... Everyone who has nukes knows that it’d be suicide to launch them. So no one launches them.
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    • Petrov knew that if America was going to send a nuclear attack, we would have used everything we had to obliterate Russia. Five missives just wouldn’t make sense coming from America.
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    • He knew it was a false alarm because he realized that if there really was a missile strike, they would launch enough nukes to wipe out every major city. Launching only five is like telling your parents one bad thing you did, giving your siblings a reason to tell your parents ALL the things.
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    • This was the Able Archer incident if anyone cares. The west was conducting a test and the Soviets freaked out, but we didn't know why until 1991 when Soviet files were declassified
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    • He should have done it so I wouldn't have had to live in the age of tik tok
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    • Stanislav Petrov is the most Russian name I think I’ve ever heard
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    • The only good communist.
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    • Look up the "peace Walker" incident to hear the full story
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    • How do you even get that as a false alarm bro, like wtf
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    • God that parallel earth must be trying to break into ours with the way 2020 is going
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    • We couldve avoided covid 19 if he wouldve launched them
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    • The Cold War is filled with events like this. People are talking about another World War, well it could’ve happened at any moment during the Cold War
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    • We need to destroy all the nukes, nuclear energy is really useful but we don’t need a weapon that could end the world and it’s hydra bad idea to have them
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    • He reasoned that the United States wouldn’t just send 5, but rather ALL or a majority of their nuclear power. He sat for 20 minutes as the alarms rung. Any moment he could’ve been wrong and all of the Soviet Union could’ve been devastated... BUT it was just a flock of birds
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    • just think. if that person was not there our entire world would be different. we might all be dead.
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    • Forgot to mention they needed 3 officers to turn their keys or however they did it and two of them had, he was the last bastion of humanity
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    • Damn I feel like that’s something that I would have liked to learn in history class
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    • Damn the fuckers that gave him the alert must’ve wanted to see some serious shit hit the fan
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    • It would have been alot more than 5 nukes if it was a real attack from us
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    • The reason he did not choose to launch the nukes is because he thought that “if they were launching an attack, why would they only launch 5 missiles”
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    • I’m not really the religious type but damn stuff like this really makes me believe that there’s some sort of higher power guiding the world in the right direction.
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    • If this were me I would be woken up from a stone cold nap to people going “You saved the world comrade” and I’ll be like half dazed with drool on my chin going “Da. Dat is what I did. I not sleep on job. I am hero.”
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    • His two crew mates that were with him said that they should launch, but because he refused they didn’t
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    • How about the submarine off the coast of Hawaii that was going to launch nukes on the mainland when instead of launching them the officer in charge of firing them self destructed the submarine instead. In the 80s the Russians and Americans argued over who could dive for the wreckage.
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    • I guess if I saw FIVE nukes all coming at, I'd assume it's false, too. They only need one per place..
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    • If he had, and that meant the russians would have attacked first, and not only that but started the war, history as we know it, life as we currently live it would be nothing like it is right now, this man saved the goddamn world if your really thinking about it.
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    • This is just too lucky to have been from our timeline. Definitely was a mix up with some other timeline for sure
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    • F for comrade
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    • nigga stopped nuclear war by goin "nah"
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    • During the Cuban missile crisis a Soviet nuclear sub was being depth charged by an American ship and prepared to fire. They could not contact Moscow and assumed the US had begun the invasion of Cuba. One of the guys ordered them not to fire, avoiding nuclear war
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    • In the Cuban missile crisis, there were 2 situations where the nukes were almost shot that people don’t know about. One Soviet Union soldier was monitoring the airspace, and the system alerted him of an incoming attack, but he decided not to acknowledge it. He was right, because the system had an
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    • You mean this man let Justin Bieber live? Ima go do it for him
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    • He saved humanity
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    • EmpLemon made a documentary on YouTube about him
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    • Because soviet tech is horrible and he knew it was an error
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    • He was also reprimanded and removed from that station, despite it being a computer glitch.
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    • *happy BLYAT noises*
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    • The only good commie
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    • Check out Grazed by the Apocalypse by Lemmino on YouTube. It kinda unsettling how common that one refusal to press a button was all that kept us from mutual destruction
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    • Took a lot of balls to do that
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    • So we have that bastard to blame for all this? Fuck.
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    • This scenario has occurred multiple times, like during the cuban missile crisis a soviet sub was being depth charged and 2 votes out of three from the top personal aboard were to nuke America but the third decided against it.
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    • Hey my birthday is September 25, shits crazy
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    • This is major petrov, come out with your hands up, to enemy infiltrators, we have captured one of your comrades, we know you are up there, surrender now and we will spare your comrade, if you do not surrender your comrade will die, come out with your hands up!
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    • Yet we still play with these things like toys. Waving them at any little country that decides to get their own. Y’all act like “hah Russians crazy” but our country is the only one responsible for actually dropping one. Think about that.
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    • Nuclear weapons are a testament to mans idiocy. The ability to destroy entire societies within seconds, but depending on the arsenal of those you choose to fight, the very same will happen to you. A nuclear war is a mutual war, with neither party left.
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    • F to pay respects
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    • Didn't he face court martial and potential execution for disobeying a direct order for this as well?
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    • Fuck this just search up lemino apocalypse the dude talks about it much better than this dogshit of a feature
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    • That's the day my father turned 13. He was born sep 26th 1970
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    • If American was receiving the false alarm they would have retaliate in a heartbeat
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    • Exurb1a has a video that mentions him called (You will never do anything remarkable)
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    • This ones legit guys fuckin hero
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    • We could have all been playing Fallout decades earlier smh
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    • They could see where the nukes were headed he didnt just have a gut feeling. Even back then.
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    • The whopper computer plays and endless series of war games...
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    • That humans couldn’t bring themselves to turn the keys when they received their orders was the plot of WarGames. Go watch it, great 80s movie.
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    • Hearing about many of these fellows, their action or inaction prevented apocalypse, nuke town, WWIII, etc. surely their are many many many solders foreign and domestic who’ve cared for humanity enough to succeed within a moral dilemma
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    • Damn. Imagine how much different life would be if he launched the attack
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    • The coolest fact about this if it is indeed the truth, was that the missile detection system was actually detecting the moon and thought it was a nuclear strike. Dude went outside to look with his own eyes to confirm
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    • There were Angels with him then, and he's with them Now.
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    • Didn’t he say he thought it was a false alarm because we would’ve sent a lot more nukes than that
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    • i wish i had this much trust for my friends, let alone my enemies
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    • One good commie
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    • Bro if everyone knew just how many times this type of shit has happened people would go insane and live in even more fear.... and the guy got demoted from his rank for disobeying a direct order in that type of event.
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    • Chadislav petrov
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    • Question is who sent him the false alarm ?
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    • I remember seeing this on x-men are you sure it happened cause if it did now I am gonna start looking for wolverine
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    • Imagine if this actually did happen and he didnt launch the missiles
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    • The Soviet systems were constantly giving false alarms
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    • Tbh what if we live in one of the best universes
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    • This has happened several times on several sides due to technical malfunctions. We've been on the verge of nuclear war a handful of times and no one knew it
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    • I don’t wanna set the world on fire
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    • Petrov : I'm about to do whats called a pro gamer move
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    • And yet in his documentary he says that he hates being called “the man who saved the world” and says he was just there at the right time. Real humble guy, but lived a quiet sad life
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    • Thanks for not destroying us all you old Soviet
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    • That man literally saved the world
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    • It’s actually crazy how we didn’t all die in a nuclear war already if you truly think about it
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    • This man single handedly prevented ww3 and nuclear annihilation
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    • Let’s just throw this up every few years in case not everyone has heard about it.
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    • Men want peace, goverments want war
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    • This man prevented fallout from becoming reality and I'm fucking grateful fallout is a very scaring situation
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    • This man saved the world and got practically no recognition. Respect.
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    • Russain saves the world: Americans "yaa fcck you we still would have *spits chewing tabaco* won ya commies.. wait what were we *sniffs gas* talkin about?"
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    • if im not mistakin he wasnt even supposed to be there in the first place. i heard he was a janitor or something and he was there in the control room on his day off or something idk the full story
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    • This man prevented Fallout
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    • Like Macnamara said, boiled down to luck in avoiding nuclear war
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    • Just thinking a tiny factor like this decides the outcome of the future
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