Currently viewing the tag: "nuclear missiles"

Able Archer 83 is the codename for a command post exercise carried out in November 1983 by the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO). As with Able Archer exercises from previous years, the purpose of the exercise was to simulate a period of conflict escalation, culminating in a simulated DEFCON 1 coordinated nuclear attack. Coordinated from the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) headquarters in Casteau, Belgium, it involved NATO forces throughout Western Europe, beginning on November 7, 1983, and lasting for five days.

The 1983 exercise introduced several new elements not seen in previous years, including a new, unique format of coded communication, radio silences, and the participation of heads of government. This increase in realism, combined with deteriorating relations between the United States and the Soviet Union and the anticipated arrival of Pershing II nuclear missiles in Europe, led some members of the Soviet Politburo and military to believe that Able Archer 83 was a ruse of war, obscuring preparations for a genuine nuclear first strike. In response, the Soviets readied their nuclear forces and placed air units in East Germany and Poland on alert. The apparent threat of nuclear war ended with the conclusion of the exercise on November 11.

Some historians have since argued that Able Archer 83 was one of the times when the world has come closest to nuclear war since the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. Other incidents that also brought the world close to such a war include the Soviet nuclear false alarm incident that occurred a month earlier and the Norwegian rocket incident of 1995. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of a war game that was used as a ruse to conceal the actual operation.

Journaling Prompt: How do you feel about the political tensions in the world today?

Art Prompt: Able Archer 83

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the history of nuclear close calls and what we can learn from them today.

Photo Credit: Able Archer 83 After Action Report on Wikimedia

The Manhattan Project was a research and development undertaking during World War II that produced the first nuclear weapons. It was led by the United States with the support of the United Kingdom and Canada. From 1942 to 1946, the project was under the direction of Major General Leslie Groves of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Nuclear physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer was the director of the Los Alamos Laboratory that designed the actual bombs. The Army component of the project was designated the Manhattan District; “Manhattan” gradually superseded the official codename, Development of Substitute Materials, for the entire project. Along the way, the project absorbed its earlier British counterpart, Tube Alloys. The Manhattan Project began modestly in 1939, but grew to employ more than 130,000 people and cost nearly US $2 billion (about $27 billion in 2016[1] dollars). Over 90% of the cost was for building factories and to produce fissile material, with less than 10% for development and production of the weapons. Research and production took place at more than 30 sites across the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story or poem about the secret development of a new weapon.

Journaling Prompt: Write about how you feel that we have the ability to destroy ourselves and the planet.

Art Prompt: Manhattan Project

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the Manhattan Project.

Photo Credit: Trinity shot on Wikimedia

Titan missile in its silo

On 26 September 1983, the nuclear early warning system of the Soviet Union twice reported the launch of American Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missiles from bases in the United States. These missile attack warnings were correctly identified as a false alarm by Stanislav Yevgrafovich Petrov, an officer of the Soviet Air Defence Forces. This decision is seen as having prevented a retaliatory nuclear attack based on erroneous data on the United States and its NATO allies, which would have likely resulted in nuclear war and the deaths of millions of people. Investigation of the satellite warning system later confirmed that the system had malfunctioned. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of an alternate history where missiles were actually launched or where no missiles were launched but the Soviet Air Defense Forces believed they were.

Journaling Prompt: How do you find peace in a dangerous world?

Art Prompt: False alarm

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience this story and challenge them to re-evaluate their beliefs about how we ensure peace.

Photo Credit: Todd Lappin on Flickr