In the 1950s, the U.S. Air Force built a network of early warning radar so they could detect a Soviet attack at some point before North America turned into a field of mushroom clouds. These radar stations were linked by communications lines to the Strategic Air Command headquarters in Nebraska, the Air Force bomber and missile bases and the underground Batcave-style NORAD command center in Wyoming.
So, understandably, quite a few pairs of underpants were soiled on November 24, 1961, when communications between SAC headquarters and the radar sites suddenly went dead. You know, as if they had been suddenly wiped off the map by a surprise attack. SAC tried calling the backup lines. When that didn't work, they tried calling NORAD on the regular civilian telephone, but they couldn't even bring up a dial tone.
"Ugh! I just keep getting that stupid singing message they left when they were all drunk."
At this point, the only conclusion was that the Soviet Union had just nuked all the radar sites, as well as NORAD, as the first wave of a massive, world-ending attack. All over the United States, nuclear-armed B-52s lined up on runways and started their engines. For the next 12 minutes, the United States Air Force nervously awaited the order to commence global annihilation.
Luckily for future generations, a B-52 that was already in the air happened to fly past one of the radar sites, noticed a distinct lack of smoking ruins and reported it in time to convince everyone to calm their shit down.
"I'm just gonna drop these bombs off before I come back, no sense letting 'em go to waste."