Soviet officer who 'saved the world from WWIII' gets Dresden Peace PrizeSubmitted by ecard71 on Wed, 02/20/2013 - 05:33
The international reward has found retired Soviet officer Stanislav Petrov, who averted a nuclear war in 1983 by telling his superiors not to press the red button.
Not only do classified documents contain secrets, they can also tell stories of unrecognized heroes. A small episode in Soviet history, that could have changed the world forever, has recently been revealed and acknowledged internationally, with recognition finding a previously unknown Russian awarded in Germany’s Dresden.
On September 26th, 1983, then-Soviet Lieutenant-Colonel Stanislav Petrov was on duty at an early-warning anti-nuclear center in the Moscow Region, when an alarm warning of incoming missile attack from the USA suddenly went off.
Petrov, who, amid mounting Cold War tensions, saw several ballistic missiles launched towards the USSR on his radar screen, was responsible for taking decisions on the spot, and had to report to his superiors immediately.
What he then told them might have caused the Soviet retaliation and unleashed World War III. But it didn’t – because Petrov decided it must have been a false alarm due to some system flaw. The couner-strike was eventually called off.