15 Last Minute Decisions That Changed World History Forever

History can easily change in an instant and it doesn’t take much to change it. One speech, one decision, one wrong turn, one shot fired, or one last-minute decision. These are the things that can easily change the course of history in the blink of an eye. The history books are filled with events that only happened because someone somewhere decided that at the very last moment they were or weren’t going to do something.


1Teddy Roosevelt’s speech saved his life

We have seen this in movies where a character gets shot only to realize the bullet was stopped by something in their pocket. This is what happened in 1912 when an assailant shot Roosevelt while he was giving a speech. Prior to getting on the stage, he placed a 50-page speech in his breast pocket which ended up saving his life. Also back then guns were not that powerful.

Teddy Roosevelts speech saved his life

Image Source: history.com


2The last-minute offer change doomed the Titanic

It was called the ‘unsinkable’ of its time. The Titanic was one of the greatest naval tragedies in history. But, did you know that this happened because of a last-minute change? The officer who was supposed to sail on the Titanic was changed at the last minute and forgot to turn in his keys to the locker that housed the binoculars. This is why the crew had to spot icebergs with their bare eyes.

The last-minute offer change doomed the Titanic

Image Source: britannica.com


3A wrong turn led to WWI

Gavrilo Princip wanted to oust the rulers of the Austro-Hungarian Empire which meant he went after Archduke Franz Ferdinand. His first attempt was to bomb his car convoy but the explosion happened too late and Ferdinand escaped. When Ferdinand was on his way to the hospital to check on the injured his driver took a wrong turn and ended up on the street right next to Gavrilo Princip who then shot into the car killing Ferdinand and his wife.

A wrong turn led to WWI

Image Source: history.com


4A surprise birthday vacation helped win D-Day

D-Day will always be remembered as one of the most important days in WWII. It is what changed the tide of the war but did you know that none of this would’ve happened if someone had not decided to surprise his wife with a vacation for her birthday? It was German Field Marshall Erwin Rommel who was known as the most skilled German military tactician who decided to leave his post for a few days right when D-Day was planned to happen to give his wife a birthday surprise.

Surprise birthday vacation helped win D-day

Image Source: military.com


5Stanislav Petrov is a very important name

It was on September 26, 1983, when Petrov was doing his job monitoring the Soviets’ early warning systems to alert them when a missile is heading their way. An alert went off which indicated that the US had launched a missile and it was Petrov’s job to return fire. But, he felt something amiss and decided not to launch anything. Later he found out that it was a false alarm and his last-minute thinking not only saved his country but the world from an all-out nuclear war.

Stanislav Petrov is a very important name

Image Source: www.thesun.co.uk


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