One of the more chilling documentaries I've seen this year is called "The Man Who Saved the World", a PBS documentary on the series "Secrets of the Dead.While most documentaries, films, and books on the Cuban Missile Crisis cover the desperate back-and-forth negotiations between President Kennedy and Premier Nikita Khrushchev, Fidel Castro and their respective advisers, this film recreates the situation on board a Russian diesel sub in the Atlantic where three Russian naval officers (submariners) had their boat surrounded by a US Naval blockade, called a "quarantine" by the Kennedy Administration.
The senior officers on the ship had to choose between surfacing the submarine, which would have meant rendering them in a state of unconditional surrender to the Americans or using the "special weapon" on board the submarine--a nuclear torpedo. Time was running out--the temps inside the sub were beyond 110 degrees and the crew were being bombarded by ships and planes from the US Atlantic fleet with mega-loud sonar audio attack and non-damaging but unsettling depth charges.
It was October 27, 1962. The world was on the verge of a man-made holocaust. Even if you remember or have read about this chapter in Cold War history, this is still one of the most harrowing chapters of the events, and, to me, why the world will never be safe until all powers destroy their nuclear stockpiles.More on the program and a link to the documentary itself here: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/secrets/featured/the-man-who-saved-the-world-about-this-episode/871/