off topic : Judgement of error
  • *Forwarded from Lt. Col. Balasubramanian* (not sure!)

    *Col of the Soviet Army.*

    Stanislav Yevgrafovich Petrov

    The date is 1 September 1983 and the Cold War between the Soviet Union and
    USA is in full gear, when from the New York skies Korean Air Lines Flight
    007 flies from JFK, destination Seoul, South Korea.

    In the middle of the flight, while accidentally passing through Soviet air
    space, Soviet fighter jets appear getting close the aircraft. The Soviets,
    who didn't know the plane contained civilians, warned the pilot that they
    will shoot down the aircraft if it doesn't identify itself, and the pilot,
    for some unknown reason, doesn't respond.

    Reports say the pilot never actually received the information, although
    theories about this are still unclear. An hour passes as the fighter jets
    still accompany the aircraft, and the orders from Soviet military is to
    shoot down the aircraft just as the plane was leaving Soviet airspace. The
    Soviet fighter jets shot down the plane, with the aircraft plunging 35,000
    feet in less than 90 seconds, killing 269 civilians, including a US
    congressman. Hell broke loose. As the Soviets tried to defend their
    'mistake', US President Ronald Reagan described the Soviets actions as
    "barbaric" and "a crime against humanity that must never be forgotten". The
    tension between the two mega-powers hit an all-time high, and on 15
    September 1983 the US administration banned Soviet aircrafts from operating
    in US airspace. With the political climate in dangerous territory, both US
    and Soviet government were on high-alert believing an attack was imminent.

    It was a cold night at the Serpukhov-15 bunker in Moscow on 26 September
    1983 as Strategic Rocket Forces lieutenant colonel Stanislav Yevgrafovich
    Petrov resumed his duty, monitoring the skies of the Soviet Union, after
    taking a shift of someone else who couldn't go to work. Just past midnight,
    Petrov received a computer report he'd dreaded all his military career to
    see, the computer captured a nuclear military missile being launched from
    the US, destination Moscow.

    In the event of such an attack, the Soviet Union's strategy protocol was
    to launch an immediate all-out nuclear weapons counterattack against the
    United States with nuclear power, and immediately afterwards inform top
    further the military offensive on America. The bunker was in full-alarm,
    with red lights all over the place as the missile was captured by the Soviet
    satellites via computers. Petrov wasn't convinced though.. He believed that
    if the US attacked, they would have attacked all-out, not just sending one
    missile and giving a chance for them (the Soviets) to attack back. Petrov
    figured something didn't make sense, as strategically, just one missile from
    the US would be a strategic disaster. He took some time to think and decided
    not to give the order of a nuclear attack against America, since in his
    opinion, one missile didn't make sense strategically and it could easily
    have been a computer error.

    But then, seconds later, the situation turned extremely serious. A second
    missile was spotted by the satellite. The pressure by the officers in the
    bunker to commence responsive actions against America started growing. A
    third missile was spotted, followed by a fourth. A couple of seconds later,
    a fifth one was spotted... everyone in the bunker was agitated as the USSR
    was under missile attack. He had two options. Go with his instinct and
    dismiss the missiles as computer errors, breaking military protocol in the
    process or take responsive action and commence full-blown nuclear actions
    against America, potentially killing millions. He decided it was a computer
    error, knowing deep down that if he was wrong, missiles would be raining
    down in Moscow in minutes. Seconds turned to minutes, and as time passed it
    was clear Petrov was right, it was a computer error after all. Stanislav
    Petrov had prevented a worldwide nuclear war, a doomsday scenario that would
    have annihilated entire cities. He was a hero. Those around him
    congratulated him for his superb judgment.

    Upon further investigation it resulted that the error came from a very rare
    sunlight alignment, which the computer read as missile. Of course, top brass
    in the Kremlin didn't find it so heroic, as he broke military protocol and
    if he would have been wrong, risked millions of Russian lives. He was sent
    into early retirement, with a measly $200 a month pension, suffering a
    nervous breakdown in the process. Due to military secrecy, nobody knew
    Petrov's heroic judgment until 1998, when a book written by a Russian
    officer present at the bunker revealed that World War 3 was closer than
    people thought, and a nuclear holocaust was avoided by a close shave. Petrov
    reminisces what could have been if he didn't get that extra shift that

    Even though the Russians have little sympathy to the man who saved millions
    of American lives, the United Nations and a number of US agencies honoured
    the man who could have started a nuclear war, but didn't.

    A documentary film entitled 'The Man who saved the World' is set to be
    released, perhaps giving Petrov some financial help, thanking him for the
    incredible part he had in keeping the US and the USSR out of a full-blown
    war. Without knowing on the cold Moscow night back in 1983, a badly paid
    44 year old military officer saved the world, and made himself one of the
    most influential persons of the century in the process, saving more lives
    than anyone ever did. Most of today's people don't know it, but today's
    world as we know it, is like it is because of Stanislav Petrov.

    WIKIPEDIA entry about Stanilav Petrov : Here Petrov has said he does not
    regard himself as a hero for what he did that day. In an interview for the
    documentary film 'The Red Button and the Man Who Saved the World,' Petrov
    says, "All that happened didn't matter to me — it was my job. I was simply
    doing my job, and I was the right person at the right time, that's all. My
    late wife for 10 years knew nothing about it. 'So what did you do?' she
    asked me. And I said I did nothing."
  • Dear Thiru
    Fantasitic movie Denzel Washington at his best and Jack and his racial slurs...including the Lippenzar horses are the best because they are white.....Denzel waits to the end to state Lippenzars are born black and greay to become white!

    Kind Regards


    Aside from the rare solid-colored horse (usually bay or black), most Lipizzans are gray.
    Like all gray horses, they have black skin, dark eyes, and as adult
    horses, a white hair coat. Gray horses, including Lipizzans, are born
    dark—usually bay or black—and become lighter each year as the graying
    process takes place, with the process being complete at between 6 and
    10 years of age. Contrary to popular belief, Lipizzans are not actually
    true white horses.[5] A white horse is born white, has pink skin and usually has blue eyes.[28]
  • I was exactly thinking the Crimson tide when I read this. That was a good
    movie, one of Denzel Washigton's best !!

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