Cold War Secrets Revealed! | Telecasts | Tomorrow's World

Cold War Secrets Revealed!

Cold War Secrets Revealed!

  Original Air Date: 22nd July 2020

When elephants clash, smaller animals do well to get out of the way, but who can hide when planet earth is left in rubble? The Cuban missile crisis of 1962 nearly brought the world to the unthinkable, a nuclear exchange between the United States and the Soviet Union—in popular parlance, Armageddon. Although it was understood during those thirteen tense days of October that it was a close call, what we know today is enough to send chills through the spine of the most calloused individual.

[The text below represents an edited transcript of this Tomorrow’s World program.]

Nuclear War and Beyond

When elephants clash, smaller animals do well to get out of the way, but who can hide when planet earth is left in rubble? The Cuban missile crisis of 1962 nearly brought the world to the unthinkable, a nuclear exchange between the United States and the Soviet Union—in popular parlance, Armageddon. Although it was understood during those thirteen tense days of October that it was a close call, what we know today is enough to send chills through the spine of the most calloused individual.

Now, decades later, we know the truth about just how close we came to the end of the world as we know it. On today’s Tomorrow’s World program, I’ll reveal to many of you for the first time, just how close we came, and it was a whole lot closer than we knew at the time. In addition, we’ll see that there have been far more Cold War nuclear near misses than are generally known. And I’ll be offering a free resource, Armageddon and Beyond, that shows a nuclear holocaust is not fiction, but also, that there is good news for our future. I’ll be right back with shocking details, so don’t go away!

The Truth About the Cold War Now Understood

Welcome to Tomorrow’s World where we hold out a real hope for a better world. But we also don’t shy away from reality, and the facts are, that there are far more dangers than many realize.

The Cuban Missile Crisis is ancient history to most people alive today. After all, October 1962 was nearly six decades ago, and anyone under the age of 70 probably only has vague memories of it, if any at all. That frightening time is ancient history to younger generations, when two superpowers with weapons of massive destructive power came to the brink of war. Even for those of us who lived through those perilous days, and are old enough to remember, details have faded, and even we did not know the whole story.

We might also add that the subject of history has been de-emphasized in public education in the West and replaced by Social Studies. That substitution for history seemed innocuous enough when I was in school in the late 50’s and early 60’s, but the replacement of history by social studies continues to evolve. In fact, it was a clever sleight of hand. Words have meaning and social studies is not the same as history! Today’s secondary schools and universities, and even primary schools, pump leftist propaganda into young minds in an attempt to transform society and re-write history.

So how can we blame younger generations for lacking understanding of events for which they were never taught and have no context? Even their parents may not know. If they learn anything about the Cuban Missile Crisis it is likely that the Soviet Union and Cuba were victims of Western imperialism. This does not imply that all are in the dark. Not all schools are alike. Some have strong courses in both ancient and modern history; and many very bright young people study on their own and are well-informed. But sadly, this is far from the norm.

Following World War 2, feature films in theaters (at least in the United States) were often preceded by cartoons and newsreels. I still remember how Fidel Castro and his Cuban revolutionaries were praised in these newsreels, but following his successful overthrow of the Batista regime, to the dismay of America and its Western allies, Castro declared his allegiance to communism and the Soviet Union. A potential enemy only 90 miles away created a problem for the United States and Canada. And what affected America would have consequences for the rest of the world.

The reality of the problem became apparent when Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev secretly moved more than 41,000 troops into Cuba between July and October 1962. But more troubling was the discovery that Khrushchev had also ordered medium and intermediate range missiles, capable of carrying nuclear weapons that could reach Atlanta, Dallas, Detroit, New York, and Toronto. That was a bridge too far for the North American alliance, and was a direct challenge to John F. Kennedy, the young American president.

Kennedy consulted with top military brass and advisors and chose what history shows was the wise response—to quarantine Cuba. That was a word used to avoid the word blockade—which would amount to a declaration of war. Most of this was known to anyone keeping up with the news at the time, but there was far more going on under the surface that we would have to wait decades to learn, after formerly “Top Secret” documents came to light. Only then would we know how close a call it was. Even today, most people are completely unaware of what has been revealed.

As the crisis unfolded, the Soviet Union sent four submarines to the waters around Cuba. One of them, submarine B-59, was intercepted by the American navy on October 27. It was surrounded and small depth charges like hand grenades, not designed to destroy a sub, but to give a warning, were dropped to force it to the surface. Those on the receiving end of these charges had a very different view from that which was intended. But what the United States did not know at the time was that B-59 was carrying two nuclear tipped torpedoes, each of which carried about two-thirds the explosive power of the Hiroshima A-bomb, enough to take out much of the nearby U.S. fleet.

Conditions aboard the diesel-powered submarine were already uncomfortable, with temperatures hovering around 100 degrees F, (that’s about 38 Celsius). And carbon dioxide build-up contributed to foggy thinking. Further, being below the surface and out of communication with Moscow for so long, those aboard B-59 had no idea what was going on above them. Officers wondered, “Had war begun between the superpowers already?” This was a real possibility. What happened next is bone chilling in retrospect. According to

“Vadim Orlov, an intelligence officer aboard the submarine, recalled how the American ships “surrounded us and started to tighten the circle, practicing attacks and dropping depth charges. They exploded right next to the hull. It felt like you were sitting in a metal barrel, which somebody is constantly blasting with a sledgehammer.” ... Orlov remembered Captain Valentin Savitsky shouting, “We’re going to blast them now! We will die, but we will sink them all—we will not disgrace our Navy!” Political officer Ivan Semonovich Maslennikov agreed that they should launch the torpedo” (“Nuclear Close Calls: The Cuban Missile Crisis,” Atomic Heritage Foundation, June 15, 2018).

Had they launched that torpedo, our world would be vastly different than it is today. How different? That’s the rest of the story that has been kept secret.

Armageddon at the Door?

It was October 27, 1962 during the two-week standoff between the two superpowers when the Soviets moved medium and intermediate range missiles into Cuba. A Soviet submarine had been detected trying to get through the American quarantine of Cuba, and the captain of Sub B-59 and a second high ranking official were ready to launch a nuclear tipped torpedo into the U.S. naval fleet. What prevented them? Before the break I said I would reveal the rest of the story. But first, I want to explain what the results would have been if they followed through with that decision.

What is generally unknown, and only revealed with the release of top secret documents decades later, was the planned American response, had that torpedo been launched. The American public and their counterparts in their Western allies in Canada, Britain, Australia, New Zealand, France, and Germany, were deliberately kept in the dark during those years about America’s overwhelming superiority in nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them. We learn from, that:

Soviet bombers at the time ‘could deliver about 270 nuclear weapons to U.S. territory.’ By contrast, the United States had thousands of warheads that it could deliver via 1,576 Strategic Air Command bombers as well as 183 Atlas and Titan intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), 144 Polaris missiles via nine nuclear submarines, and ten newly-built Minuteman ICBMs” (“Nuclear Close Calls: The Cuban Missile Crisis,” Atomic Heritage Foundation, June 15, 2018).

President Kennedy’s predecessor, Dwight Eisenhower understood war only too well and tried during his presidency to hold the line on the proliferation of nuclear weapons. Nevertheless, the U.S. nuclear arsenal grew massively during his eight years as the leader of the free world. He also believed that there could never be a limited nuclear exchange. Once one bomb went off, it would quickly escalate. Therefore, Eisenhower commissioned his generals to put together a “Single Integrated Operational Plan” (SIOP). This would ultimately reflect the doctrinal thinking of the Air Force’s Strategic Air Command (SAC), as created under the leadership of General Curtis LeMay and his successor General Thomas Powell.

“General Curtis LeMay’s SAC had one war plan, as a naval officer described it in 1954: to leave the Soviet Union ‘a smoking, radioactive ruin in two hours’” (Ike’s Bluff, Thomas, p. 397).

Few Americans, much less others, knew anything about the kind of response a nuclear attack by the Soviet Union, no matter how limited, would bring from the United States. As explained in Evan Thomas’ book, Ike’s Bluff: President Eisenhower’s Secret Battle to Save the World, an overwhelming retaliation would descend upon:

“...the Soviet Union, Red China and the Soviet satellite states in a single cataclysmic blow if the United States were attacked. Under the SIOP, the United States would shoot the works, firing off its entire strategic arsenal of 3,500 weapons. The plan was an exercise in ‘overkill,’ said [George] Kistiakowsky. It would, the science adviser said, ‘kill four or five times over somebody who is already dead.’ Coming back from the briefing for his noon nap, Eisenhower told his naval aide, Captain Pete Aurand, that the SIOP “frightens the devil out of me”” (Ike’s Bluff, Thomas, p. 394).

Overkill was considered necessary since it was unlikely that all bombers would get through to deliver their destructive cargos. The incoming newly elected President Kennedy was briefed on SIOP in December 1960, but he may not have fully comprehended it the first time. As Thomas explains:

“Sometime later, after another SIOP run-through, the young president-elect would remark to his secretary of state, Dean Rusk, with a mixture of wonder and disgust, ‘And they call us human beings.’ But Kennedy and the presidents who followed him throughout the Cold War and beyond did not trim back the SIOP. It in fact grew more complex and fantastically apocalyptic” (Ike’s Bluff, Thomas, p. 399).

A Top Secret report was declassified in 2011 regarding SIOP as it existed in 1962. Estimates of those killed by such a massive response were 212,000,000 people in the USSR and communist China, with an additional 4.4 million in Poland and other Eastern European countries who were under the rule of the USSR (“U.S. War Plans Would Kill an Estimated 108 Million Soviets, 104 Million Chinese, and 2.6 Million Poles: More Evidence on SIOP-62 and the Origins of Overkill,”, November 8, 2011).

Radioactivity would no doubt take multiple millions of lives in the aftermath, perhaps the reason one report estimated a figure as high as 600,000,000. And this does not include millions of casualties inflicted on the free world, and although perhaps a less overwhelming response, anyone who thinks the Soviet planners were any more civilized is naïve.

So what was it that prevented nuclear Armageddon nearly six decades ago?

Nuclear Safety NOT Guaranteed...

As we saw in the previous portions of this program, those aboard Soviet submarine B-59 were in the dark as to the state of the world above them. This was October 27, 1962, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the U.S. Navy was signaling with small depth charges for the Russians to surface. But Soviet Captain Savitsky and political officer Maslennikov, thinking they were under attack and war may have already begun between the superpowers, agreed to launch a nuclear tipped torpedo. What stopped them?

The Soviet Union was as worried as the United States about an accidental nuclear war. Therefore, their protocol required assenting voices from the three top officers aboard the sub. As explained on

The last remaining officer, Second Captain Vasili Alexandrovich Arkhipov, dissented. They did not know for sure that the ship was under attack, he argued. Why not surface and then await orders from Moscow? In the end, Arkhipov’s view prevailed. (“Nuclear Close Calls: The Cuban Missile Crisis,” Atomic Heritage Foundation, June 15, 2018).

That is how close we came to Armageddon—a single dissenting voice!

But do you realize this was only one Cold War near miss involving nuclear weapons? We live in a far more dangerous world than most realize. Other classified documents released in recent years fill in details of other near catastrophes. “Broken Arrow” is a military code used for an accidental event that involves nuclear weapons or components thereof. An April 6, 2019 report revealed the United States and Soviet Union have had at least 32 admitted broken arrow incidents. In six of them, weapons were lost and never found, or deliberately left undisturbed. Most of these involved U.S. weapons, but since the Soviet Union is much more secretive about such things, it is almost certain that there were more.

“The first broken arrow occurred on February 14, 1950, when a U.S. Convair B-36… crashed in northern British Columbia after jettisoning a Mark 4 nuclear bomb into the Pacific Ocean. The bomb was never found…” (“‘Broken Arrows’ - The World’s Lost Nuclear Weapons,” Marcia Wendorf,, April 6, 2019).

Another broken arrow incident took place at an air base in England.

“On July 27, 1956, a U.S. B-47 bomber was on a training exercise when it crashed into a nuclear weapons storage facility at the Lakenheath Air Base in Suffolk, England. The entire crew of the aircraft was killed. Known as an ‘igloo’, the storage facility contained three Mark 6 nuclear bombs, one of whose detonators had been sheared off in the accident. Investigators concluded that it was a miracle that the bomb hadn’t exploded” (ibid.).

But that wasn’t the only miracle. Here is another incident where “luck” was on our side.

“On January 24, 1961, a B-52 carrying two three- or four-megaton nuclear bombs was over Goldsboro, North Carolina when it suffered the structural failure of its right wing. The aircraft broke apart and the two nuclear weapons were released. On one bomb, three of its four arming mechanisms had activated.

In 2013, a Freedom of Information Act request confirmed that only a single switch out of four had prevented the bomb’s detonation. One of the recovery team recalled, ‘Until my death, I will never forget hearing my sergeant say, “Lieutenant, we found the arm/safe switch.” And I said, “Great.” He said, “Not great. It’s on arm.”’” (ibid.).

What if a broken arrow detonates by accident near enemy territory? What if a nation or rouge state uses one of these weapons against a foe? Will it start a chain reaction that could imperil human life?

The Way of Escape From Armageddon

So far on Tomorrow’s World, we’ve looked at a few close calls for mankind. Nuclear disasters are not so remote as we might have thought. But now, let’s look ahead to the future. According to the Bible, and according to Jesus Christ, there is a crisis coming such as the world has never known. As it tells us in Matthew 24:22:

“And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened” (Matthew 24:22).

Will “Armageddon” involve nuclear weapons? Probably, but what other weapons are out there that we don’t know about? The Biblical book of Revelation describes some kind of weapon that will not kill, but for a period of five months will:

“…torment… like the torment of a scorpion when it strikes a man. In those days men will seek death and will not find it; they will desire to die, and death will flee from them” (Revelation 9:5-6).

We cannot deny that there are difficult days ahead, but the fact is that most of us have far greater concerns than fearing an immediate nuclear Armageddon. As with all my generation and those on either side of it, we lived in the shadow of the mushroom cloud. Some of us more than others. My friends and I grew up on Strategic Air Command bases where we understood that in case of war, we were sitting at ground zero, and we had our personal nightmares, but rarely shared them.

It might surprise you, but Bible prophecy was a comfort to me and remains so for many who understand it. During the Cuban Missile Crisis I understood there was nothing to worry about, and despite Soviet sub B-59, that assessment was correct. Yes, it was a tense and critical time when one mistake could have blown the world apart, but according to the Bible, it wasn’t God’s time or place. Now how can I say such a thing?

Some people bring up Jesus statement in Matthew 24:36 that says:

“But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only” (Matthew 24:36).

That is certainly true. We cannot even predict the year, but this passage in no way negates literally dozens of scriptures that show certain events must first take place. In fact, this very scripture that they quote is taken out of context where it shows that we CAN know the approximate time. Notice what it says a few verses earlier.

“Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see all these things [as given before], know that it is near—at the doors!” (Matthew 24:32-33).

Knowing what is ahead, both the bad news and the good news, gives peace of mind. Without regard for some awful things on the horizon, those who understand Biblical prophecy can have peace and comfort. There IS a way of escape from Armageddon. Even more importantly, there is the realization that although we will all die, eternal life is offered to us, as Jesus promised:

“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die” (John 11:25-26).

Then He asked the woman that He was speaking to a question that equally applies to you and me:

“Do you believe this?” (John 11:26).

It behooves each of us to know why we were born. Life is precious and precarious—far more resilient than we think at times, but far more fragile in the overall picture. We’re temporary and life is short. There is a God and He gives us the opportunity to live forever. He is evaluating the decisions we make, whether we love Him with all our heart, mind, and being; or whether we follow the crowd and fear man more than God. How amazing it is that so few spend any time searching to prove that God is real, that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him, and what His purpose is for mankind. It seems that most are more interested in what is on television tonight, or whether “my team” will win this weekend.

Now if you want to understand more of what is prophesied for the last days, call, write, or go to our website to order Armageddon and Beyond. Everything we have to offer is, of course, sent free of charge, and we don’t sell your contact information to anyone—we never have, and we never will. To learn more about future events that will affect you and your family, continue to watch Tomorrow’s World, where Richard Ames, Wallace Smith, and I, along with guest presenter Rod McNair, will bring you more information about today’s issues and the glorious hope of tomorrow’s world.

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