Trigger Fingers Disengaged D+24 (2 August, 2022) 2015-2022 Zulu

2015 Zulu - Dolgikh and Chebrikov had much work to do. As did President Reagan and his advisers. Before signing off, the new Soviet co-leaders proposed an informal ceasefire be set into place beginning at midnight. The next morning, once SACEUR and Marshal Snetkov met and ironed out matters in Germany, work could begin on …

We Were Right To Fear That Weapon D+24 (2 August 1987) 1648-2015 Zulu

1648- On Nightwatch President Reagan is placed in contact with Chebrikov and Dolgikh in the Lenin Hills. They speak for eighteen minutes. The topics discussed have never been confirmed by either the Russian or US governments. Nor have any of the three men involved ever revealed the matters discussed and agreements reached at this time. …

Hell Bent For Leather D+24 (2 August, 1987) 1605-1620

Aboard Nightwatch 1600 Zulu (1205 Local) Debate over the surgical First Strike option presented by General Vuono continued on and  Reagan’s advisers were divided over the prospect. Those in favor believed time was running critically short. Romanov was a loose cannon suffering from sleep deprivation, stress and did not appear to have full control of …

On The Edge Of The Precipice D+24 (2 August, 1987) 1100-1530 Zulu

1100 Zulu- In Western Poland Marshal Snetkov learns of multiple Soviet divisions in West Germany surrendering to NATO forces. Unfortunately for CINC-West, communication disruptions make it almost impossible to verify the authenticity of the reports. 1115 Zulu- Similar claims of Soviet surrenders are making their way to SACEUR in Belgium. Only his reports come from …

Even A Paranoid Can Have Enemies D+24 (2 August, 1987) 0500-1030 Zulu

0500 Zulu- In Moscow the first indications of a Kremlin power struggle start to take shape. Marshal Akhromeyev informs KGB Chairman Viktor Chebrikov of the battlefield nuclear attacks in East Germany. Chebrikov advises the senior Soviet military officer to inform the general secretary of this event, and more significant, not to accept any orders by …

The Morning’s Second Artificial Sunrise D+24 (2 August, 1987) 0253-0330 Zulu

0253 Zulu- Romanov’s hotline message is summarized for President Reagan and his advisers in the Situation Room by the MOLINK duty officer. The general secretary explains that a direct response to the ‘unprovoked NATO nuclear attack on a Soviet military base in the GDR’ will be launched within minutes. He does not understand the purpose …

Perception and Misperception D+24 (2 August, 1987) 0100-0200 Zulu

Moscow, USSR 0100 Zulu (0500 Local) The Defense Council was huddled together in the secure conference room located on the wing adjacent to the general secretary’s living quarters. It was now beyond first light in Moscow and the Politburo was set to meet at 6:30. In the next ninety minutes some critical decisions had to …

Politics of Armageddon: “Millions Will Die…” D+22 (31 July 1987) Part II

The arrival of Western TVD’s commander in Moscow attracted little attention. The Soviet Union was engaged in a war for national survival and the unexpected appearance of a senior field commander in the capital city raised few eyebrows. General Snetkov was more at ease than he’d been on earlier trips to Moscow for the simple …

Politics of Armageddon: The Politburo Returns D+21 (30 July, 1987)

In the early part of the afternoon, the first Politburo members returned to Moscow following their short trips. The bleak and uncertain atmosphere they found the city in mirrored their own attitudes and feelings sharply. The rides from the airport to their residences took them through Moscow and separately, the men who ruled the Soviet …