The Cuban Missile Crisis
The 1962 Cuban Missile crisis was triggered when an American U-2 spy plane making a high-altitude pass over Cuba on October 14, 1962 during a routine reconnaissance mission, photographed a Soviet SS-4 medium-range ballistic missile being assembled for installation.
The photographs triggered widespread panic in the White House because all along the US had not realised that following the failure of the CIA led Bay of Pigs Invasion of April 1961 directed at removing Fidel Castro and restoring American control over Cuba, Castro had made an alliance with the Soviet Union in order to ward off the American threat.
In exchange, Castro agreed to assist the Soviets in increasing their offensive nuclear capability against the United States.
So as part of the pact with the Soviets, Castro allowed the Soviet Union to install Nuclear Missiles on the Cuban Coast within reach of Florida, and other important locations in the United States.
This is the Missile installation that was photographed by the U2 Spy Plane.
White House Reaction TO Missiles On Cuban Coast
JFK was at a complete loss, particularly because he was being pressured to go to War to deal with Castro decisively after the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion which the Military and CIA blamed on Kennedy’s refusal to provide Air Cover for the Cuban exile force that had been assembled to mount the failed invasion.
For both prestige and profit, the Military Industrial Complex also desperately wanted JFK to declare War against the Soviet Union because the Soviets had assisted Castro during the Bay of Pigs Invasion by providing Air Support to Castro’s ground troops which proved decisive.
Kennedy resented the CIA and Pentagon’s increasing influence in Foreign Policy, and his refusal to go to War would reportedly lead to his assassination.
Eventually JFK and Nikita Kruschev, the Russian Premier at the time, came to a diplomatic solution that averted a global Nuclear disaster.
This was accomplished when Kennedy offered to remove American Missiles installed in Turkey in return for the Soviet Union’s removal of its own Nuclear Arsenal from Cuba’s coast.
Ultimately, Kennedy’s peaceful solution to this crisis did not suit the agenda of the CIA and America’s Military Industrial Complex.
Following Kennedy’s death, America’s Foreign Policy became characterised by external aggression in numerous ‘Global Theatres Of War’ from Vietnam, Afghanistan to Latin America.
Nevertheless, we will always be indebted to Kruschev and Kennedy for averting a global Nuclear catastrophe in the Cold War era.