The NATO nuclear release exercise at the heart of the 1983 War Scare included at least four new components that differed from previous "routine" exercises, according to detailed, newly declassified chronologies of Able Archer 83, posted by the National Security Archive.
November 1952 – Nuclear testing: Operation Ivy: The United States successfully detonates the first hydrogen bomb, codenamed "Mike", at Eniwetok Atoll in the Marshall Islands in the central Pacific Ocean, with a yield of megatons.
A map of Autumn Forge 83 war games. Able Archer 83 was the simulated nuclear climax to a conventional war. Note that the names of the exercises have been used as titles to each episode of the television show Deutschland 1983.
American and West German troops observe Soviet units across the Fulda Gap in West Germany in 1983. Following an era of détente during the 1970s, tensions between the two powers were once again on the rise. By the fall of 1983 relations were so strained between the U.S. and U.S.S.R. that a routine NATO exercise in West Germany (codenamed: Able Archer 83) very nearly led to an armed response from the Soviets.