That is a frightening thought...20 seconds for the UK to go from normal to nothing. Did you ever see the cartoon film entitled ''When the Wind Blows''...that film really summed up how fruitless the whole war thing was. Taking shelter under the dining room table and wrapped in an old mattress?
Yes, the Russians really did produce some awesome submarines during that period..the Golf, the Akula, the Victor series, and then the Typhoon. Frightening war machines, all of them..only to end their operational lives tied up in some remote port and rusting away slowly...a sad end.
And to think that it would have only taken one word from one man to unleash all that destruction...as you rightly say, David...we are lucky to lasted this long. Pray God it never happens again...