As emotional and disruptive as the false alert was, it was not the most dangerous episode of its kind because it did not reach the military’s chain of command or decision-makers in government, he said.
Here is a look at a few cases when it did:
Oct. 5, 1960: The moon tricks a radar
A false alarm came when an early warning radar in Greenland reported to North American Air Defense Command headquarters that it had detected dozens of inbound Soviet missiles.
The report thrust Norad to its maximum alert level, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists, but officials later determined that the radar had been fooled by the “moonrise over Norway.”
Nov. 9, 1979: A ‘war game’ tape causes six minutes of worry
Computers at Norad indicated that the United…