Stanislav Petrov

Stanislav Petrov
Petrov at his house in 2016
Stanislav Yevgrafovich Petrov

(1939-09-07)7 September 1939
Died19 May 2017(2017-05-19) (aged 77)
Known for1983 Soviet nuclear false alarm incident
SpouseRaisa Petrova (m. 1973; died 1997)
Military career
Allegiance Soviet Union
Service/branchSoviet Air Defence Forces
Years of service1972–1984
RankLieutenant colonel

Stanislav Yevgrafovich Petrov (Russian: Станисла́в Евгра́фович Петро́в; 7 September 1939 – 19 May 2017) was a lieutenant colonel of the Soviet Air Defence Forces who played a key role in the 1983 Soviet nuclear false alarm incident.[1] On 26 September 1983, three weeks after the Soviet military had shot down Korean Air Lines Flight 007, Petrov was the duty officer at the command center for the Oko nuclear early-warning system when the system reported that a missile had been launched from the United States, followed by up to five more. Petrov judged the reports to be a false alarm.[2]

His subsequent decision to disobey orders, against Soviet military protocol,[3] is credited with having prevented an erroneous retaliatory nuclear attack on the United States and its NATO allies that could have resulted in a large-scale nuclear war which could have wiped out half of the population of the countries involved. An investigation later confirmed that the Soviet satellite warning system had indeed malfunctioned. Because of his decision not to launch a retaliatory nuclear strike amid this incident, Petrov is often credited as having "saved the world".[4][5][6]

  1. ^ Mattern, Douglas (28 November 2007). Standish, Katerina; Bastet, Tatiyana; Reimer, Laura; Devere, Heather; Simpson, Erika; Talahma, Rula; Loadenthal, Michael (eds.). "Beyond Nuclear Terrorism". Peace Review: A Journal of Social Justice. Washington, D.C., United States of America: Peace and Justice Studies Association (International Peace Research Association/Georgetown University)/Taylor & Francis. 19 (4): 563–569. doi:10.1080/10402650701681194. ISSN 1040-2659. S2CID 143511673. Retrieved 4 September 2021.
  2. ^ Lebedev, Anastasiya (21 May 2004). Mattern, Douglas; Waldow, Rene; Ray, Tom (eds.). "The Man Who Saved the World Finally Recognized". MosNews/Association of World Citizens (AWC). San Francisco, California, United States of America: The Association of World Citizens. Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 4 September 2021.
  3. ^ Cite error: The named reference BBC2013 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  4. ^ Long, Tony (26 September 2007). Anderson, Chris (ed.). "Sept. 26, 1983: The Man Who Saved the World by Doing ... Nothing". Wired. San Francisco, California, United States of America: Condé Nast Publications. ISSN 1059-1028. OCLC 24479723. Archived from the original on 1 November 2015. Retrieved 4 September 2021.
  5. ^ Pedersen, Glen (1 July 2005). Smith, Susan; Jordan-Simpson, Emma; Vesely-Flad, Ethan (eds.). "Stanislav Petrov World Hero". Fellowship. New York City, New York, United States of America: United States Fellowship of Reconciliation. 71 (7–8): 9–10. Retrieved 4 September 2021 – via ProQuest.
  6. ^ Forden, Geoffrey; Podvig, Pavel; Postol, Theodore A. (1 March 2000). Hassler, Susan; Land, Susan Kathy; Zorpette, Glenn; Goldstein, Harry; Bretz, Elizabeth A.; Guizzo, Erico (eds.). "False alarm, nuclear danger". IEEE Spectrum. New York City, New York, United States of America: Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. 37 (3): 31–39. doi:10.1109/6.825657. ISSN 0018-9235. Retrieved 4 September 2021.