So it turns out that the biggest act of (terrorist?) sabotage this century was committed by the CIA:
“In order to disrupt the Soviet gas supply, its hard currency earnings from the West, and the internal Russian economy, the pipeline software that was to run the pumps, turbines, and valves was programmed to go haywire, after a decent interval, to reset pump speeds and valve settings to produce pressures far beyond those acceptable to pipeline joints and welds,” Reed writes.
“The result was the most monumental non-nuclear explosion and fire ever seen from space,” he recalls, adding that U.S. satellites picked up the explosion. Reed said in an interview that the blast occurred in the summer of 1982.
Fortunately it was only the biggest in the size of the explosion, nobody was hurt. Although it did come close to starting a nuclear war:
The sabotage of the gas pipeline has not been previously disclosed, and at the time was a closely guarded secret. When the pipeline exploded, Reed writes, the first reports caused concern in the U.S. military and at the White House. “NORAD feared a missile liftoff from a place where no rockets were known to be based,” he said, referring to North American Air Defense Command. “Or perhaps it was the detonation of a small nuclear device.” However, satellites did not pick up any telltale signs of a nuclear explosion.
“Before these conflicting indicators could turn into an international crisis,” he added, “Gus Weiss came down the hall to tell his fellow NSC staffers not to worry.”
But it does make you wonder, after all, Chernobyl was just a few years later! Isn’t it possible that some of the faulty technology the CIA were selling to the Soviets ended up in Nuclear Power plants?