The Burn Bag – National Security and Foreign Policy Redefined

1983: A Nuclear Near Miss -- The Most Dangerous Year in History and how the U.S. and Soviets almost got into a Nuclear War with Brian J. Morra, former Air Force Intelligence Officer

March 15, 2023
1983: A Nuclear Near Miss -- The Most Dangerous Year in History and how the U.S. and Soviets almost got into a Nuclear War with Brian J. Morra, former Air Force Intelligence Officer
The Burn Bag – National Security and Foreign Policy Redefined
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The Burn Bag – National Security and Foreign Policy Redefined
1983: A Nuclear Near Miss -- The Most Dangerous Year in History and how the U.S. and Soviets almost got into a Nuclear War with Brian J. Morra, former Air Force Intelligence Officer
Mar 15, 2023
Are we living in the most dangerous year in history? Or was that 1962, during the Cuban Missile Crisis? According to former Air Force Intelligence Officer Brian J. Morra, the answer is neither -- rather, it was 1983. Brian makes this case, outlining how the United States and the Soviet Union narrowly avoided nuclear catastrophe, after months of tensions, tough rhetoric, and a tragic shoot-down of a Korean civilian airliner. Burn Bag host A'ndre chats with Brian about these events, dramatized in his new book, The Able Archers, based on Brian's own experiences working on intelligence issues during this time period. Brian shares why the Soviets believed that the United States was willing to launch a first strike under the Presidency of Ronald Reagan, whose tough rhetoric against the Kremlin led to heightened paranoia in the mind of dying Soviet Leader Yuri Andropov. This paranoia came to a head  in September, when a lone Soviet officer prevented a nuclear war scare after a series of false alarms, and in November, when a NATO exercise caused the Soviets to bolster their nuclear posturing in fears that the United States was actually about to launch a first strike. Many of these events came to light decades after 1983, but Brian shares these stories and more in this fascinating episode.

You can purchase Brian's book,The Able Archers, here.

Show Notes
Are we living in the most dangerous year in history? Or was that 1962, during the Cuban Missile Crisis? According to former Air Force Intelligence Officer Brian J. Morra, the answer is neither -- rather, it was 1983. Brian makes this case, outlining how the United States and the Soviet Union narrowly avoided nuclear catastrophe, after months of tensions, tough rhetoric, and a tragic shoot-down of a Korean civilian airliner. Burn Bag host A'ndre chats with Brian about these events, dramatized in his new book, The Able Archers, based on Brian's own experiences working on intelligence issues during this time period. Brian shares why the Soviets believed that the United States was willing to launch a first strike under the Presidency of Ronald Reagan, whose tough rhetoric against the Kremlin led to heightened paranoia in the mind of dying Soviet Leader Yuri Andropov. This paranoia came to a head  in September, when a lone Soviet officer prevented a nuclear war scare after a series of false alarms, and in November, when a NATO exercise caused the Soviets to bolster their nuclear posturing in fears that the United States was actually about to launch a first strike. Many of these events came to light decades after 1983, but Brian shares these stories and more in this fascinating episode.

You can purchase Brian's book,The Able Archers, here.