That One Time The Moon Nearly Sparked Nuclear War
America's sensitive early warning radar was once a little too sensitive.By Evan Thomas | November 4, 2016
We've had our share of nuclear close calls — scientific rockets mistaken for missiles, "unidentified aircraft" that turned out to be swans — but one of the earliest false alarms came from something that happens nearly every night: The moon came up.
On Oct. 5, 1960, an early warning radar base in Greenland started sending alerts. According to its computers, an attack was underway.