The North Atlantic D+19 (28 July, 1987)

SACLANT placed a critical emphasis on ASW patrols in the Western Atlantic. With Pandora’s Box seemingly open now, the threat posed by a Soviet SSBN operating inshore could not be discounted. Even a single missile sub lurking near the Eastern Seaboard of the United States could be catastrophic. From the early 70s through early July, …

The Northern Flank D+19 (28 July, 1987)

NATO and Soviet ground forces were largely inactive during the first part of the day. The confusion and anxiety formed by events elsewhere in the world dominated thoughts, preparation and action. NBC precautions were in place on both sides of the battleline. Troops moved around in bulky protective suits and masks. The restrictive nature of …

D+18 On The Flanks And At Sea 1830-2359 Zulu 27 July, 1987

For NATO and Warsaw Pact commanders on the flanks and at sea, news of the exchange halted operations for a period of time as preparations for potentially yet another round of nuclear exchanges got underway. In each theater, these preparations were complicated by conditions exclusive to each respective theater of operation. On NATO’s Southern Flank, …

Central Front D+18 1830-2359 Zulu 27 July, 1987 Part II

The order to temporarily stop offensive operations took time to circulate. In some instances, units were in heavy contact when the halt order arrived. Without being given a sufficient explanation of the reasons for the order, unit commanders began to disentangle their forces from the enemy, pull them back, establish a hasty defense and then …

Central Front D+18 1830-2359 Zulu 27 July, 1987 Part I

The new commander-in-chief of the Western TVD, General Boris Snetkov, received official word of the nuclear exchange five minutes before the destruction of both Novaya Zemlya and Gorky. This was essentially the extent of the news from Moscow. The absence of information left Snetkov’s head filled with a hopelessly long list of questions. Foremost was …