October 30 This Day During The Vietnam War

October 30, 1969 – Operation Giant Lance was a secret military operation by the United States that threatened a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union during the Cold War. On October 10, 1969, U.S. President Richard Nixon under the advisement of Henry Kissinger issued the order. Preparations were made to send a squadron of 18 B-52s of the 92d Strategic Aerospace Wing loaded with nuclear weapons to fly toward the Soviet Union. It was hoped that this would convince the Soviets that Nixon was willing to resort to nuclear war in order to win the Vietnam War. The squadron took off on October 27 and flew towards the Soviet Union. Actions were designed to be detectable by the Soviets. Nixon cancelled the operation on October 30. The plan was part of Nixon’s madman theory, a concept based on game theory, and its details remained unknown to the public until Freedom of Information Act requests in the 2000s (decade) revealed documents about the operation.

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