Secrets of the Dead (2000– )

The Man Who Saved the World 

How, during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, a Soviet submarine fleet commander and K-19 survivor, Vasili Arkhipov, kept his cool under enormous pressure and prevented his men from starting WWIII after being surrounded by the US fleet.


Nick Green


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Episode credited cast:
Jay O. Sanders ... Narrator
Viktor Mikhailov Viktor Mikhailov ... Himself - Junior Navigator, B59 Submarine
Olga Arkhipova Olga Arkhipova ... Herself - Wife of Vasili Arkhipov
Andy Bradick Andy Bradick ... Himself - Anti-submarine Warfare Officer, USS Cony (as Andrew Bradick)
Gary Slaughter Gary Slaughter ... Himself - Communications Officer, USS Cony
Thomas S. Blanton Thomas S. Blanton ... Himself - Director, National Security Archive (as Thomas Blanton)
Ryurik Ketov Ryurik Ketov ... Himself - Captain, B4 Submarine
John G. Stoessinger John G. Stoessinger ... Himself - White House Advisor (as John Stoessinger)
Leon Ockenden ... Vasili Arkhipov
Martin McDougall ... Submarine Captain
Lachlan McCall Lachlan McCall ... Leoneko
Simon Jones Simon Jones
Shonn Gregory Shonn Gregory
Michael Koltes
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Vasili Arkhipov Vasili Arkhipov ... Himself (archive footage)


During the Cuban Missile Crisis, submarine fleet commander Vasili Arkhipov, acting alone, blocked a nuclear torpedo launch at US aircraft carrier Randolph, which would have impelled a nuclear war. US Navy destroyers located a Foxtrot submarine in international waters near Cuba, and dropped practice depth charges to force the sub to surface. Sub B-59 was out of touch with the Kremlin, and was also too deep to hear any radio, so the sub's officers did not know if war was underway or not. B-59's captain and its political commissar both wanted to launch a torpedo. Written by David Stevens

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Release Date:

23 October 2012 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

16 : 9
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