Within the heated bowels of the Cold War, another technological firefight emerged.
Not by bullets, blades and horse.
A race to space, contested by the two dominant superpowers of the time: The United States of America (USA) and The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). Or Russia, basically.
The technological advantage needed to achieve space milestones was seen as a crucial matter of national security.
And both forces scrambled to outdo the other in ever-increasing shows of superiority.
Which made for monumental advances in space technology, yet also came with a darker side.
In August 1995, the Soviet Union countered the USA's claim that they would launch an artificial satellite by the end of the year by saying they would also launch a satellite "... in the near future,"
And the space race had begun in earnest.
Although neither power made good on their promise, the USSR successfully launched Sputnik - the first satellite into orbit - on October 4th in 1957.
Shortly after on April 1st, 1961, they also successfully sent Yuri Gagarin into orbit with the first woman in space, Valentina Tereshkova, on June 16th, 1963.
This gave the USSR a definitive lead in the early 1960s.
While the showboating was seen as nationalistic chest-puffing, there was a serious side to the space race.
Unseen by most and classified to nearly all.
In the years between the successful launch of Sputnik and Gagarin into orbit, the Soviet Union detonated the largest nuclear bomb in the history of mankind.
A type of "fail-safe", if they had fallen behind and were forced to save face. If you watch the first 30 minutes of the film for its propaganda factor, you'll know exactly what we mean.
The RDS-220, or the "Tsar Bomba" (King of Bombs), was a hydrogen bomb with the potential blast that amounted to over 50 million tons of TNT.
It stood a considerable 2.1 metres tall at a length of almost 8 metres and was so large that the transport bomber that carried it needed its bomb bay doors removed and fuel tanks shrunk just to fit it.
It was detonated in a once-only test off the coast of Severny Island in the Arctic Circle, 4000 metres above the ground.
Despite this, the blast shot a column of Earth high into the sky and the flash could be seen from 1000km away, while the blast cloud could be seen up to 620km away.
The mushroom cloud at its peak was almost 68km in height, seven times the altitude of Mount Everest and 10 times higher than Hiroshima.
The dome of fire reached 20km in diameter at its peak, yet the shockwave from the blast was so powerful it prevented the fire from touching the ground.
The population of Norway and Finland reported feeling the blast over 2,500km away and the blast almost dropped the bomber from the sky carrier over 120km until the pilot regained control of the aircraft.
Now, almost 60 years on, Russia has finally declassified a 40 minute behind the scenes look of the Tsar Bomba test as a celebration of Russia's 75th year in the nuclear industry.
Despite, y' know, Chernobyl and all...
Here it is in all its glory(?).
If you want to skip straight to the blast and forgo the construction to detonation propaganda, skip to the countdown at 22:19 into the video.
You know what else is the bomb?
Rocking your gear and helping take ARSE intergalactic!
That's what our mates are doing in the Australian Space Society.
So if you haven't grabbed yours and flaunted it in the group, are you even a space nerd? - See you in the group! - Clintern
Thankfully the USA, United Kingdom, and USSR signed the Partial Test Ban Treaty which required tests move underground. Still, the fact that this even exists is too terrifying for primitive creatures like us to wield.
Did present-day Russia release the footage as a continuation of the competition with the USA? Let us know in comments and share with a friend to spread ARSE.