The Cold War tested strategic and diplomatic relations between two superpowers competing on a global level. Billions of dollars and rubles were spent on escalating nuclear yield and accuracy, delivery vehicles, and conventional forces. Somehow the missile silos and submarines kept quivered their awful arrows during the 40 years after WW II, in spite of varying levels of tension between East and West. Yet another story (often unheralded) played out wherein the lowest levels of military rank and responsibility, often without specific guidance or supervision, were expected to step back from the edge of emotional and humiliating confrontation, keeping an almost international incident from becoming an actual incident.
These are the unsung heroes of the Cold War: the men and women behind the incident that didnt happen, and the confrontation that didnt escalate.
I vowed to one day write of my almosts