October of 1962 is considered by many the closest the world has ever been to a third World War. As pressure between the Soviet Union and United State grew so did the fears of the American people. Due in part because of its proximity to the United States, Cuba was the perfect place from which the Soviet Union could launch an attack. This was cause for real alarm, Cuba had already begun building silos and launch pads for nuclear missiles that would be able to do massive amounts of damage to the United States. John F. Kennedy’s speech regarding the Cuban Missile Crisis was one of the greatest factors in preventing a third World War as well as keeping domestic peace.
The Cuban Missile Crisis remains an example of one of the most terrifying events in history for the people of the world. A very real threat existed for the crisis to escalate and create World War III, which would include the annihilation of countries and cause unimaginable damage from the use of nuclear weapons by the United States and the former Soviet Union. The conflict had historical roots in the Cold War between the United States and the former Soviet Union, as well as in the history of relations between the United States and Cuba. The strife between the United States and Cuba culminated when Fidel Castro overthrew a government publicly supported by the United States, although political and military officials in the United States secretly welcomed the events. However, it soon became clear that the takeover of Cuba by Castro would result in escalating conflict between it and the United States, something that quickly became more evident in the Bay of Pigs invasion and Operation Mongoose; both designed to eliminate Castro from the political field in Cuba.
When President John F. Kennedy failed with the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in 1961, the United States started placing fifteen Jupiter intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBM) near Izmir, Turkey. Even though President Kennedy said that these missiles might have "questionable strategic value" the Soviet Premier, Nikita Khrushchev, made America aware of his anger and distain regarding Kennedy’s decision. Khrushchev believed that these missiles were not only an offense to him, but to his country as well. However, the United States also possessed nuclear submarines which posed an even greater threat than the IRBM’s. The Soviet Union came to realize that they were extremely outmatched in the area of nuclear weapons and the decision by Nikita Khrushchev to place missiles in Cuba was made.
The Cuban Missile Crisis as a Turning Point in USA and USSR The Cuban Missile Crisis was indeed a turning point in USA and Soviet relations during the Cold War. The event stands in history as one that nearly brought humanity to the brink of destruction and is known as perhaps the single greatest political battle between the two superpowers, the world has ever seen. It also started a détente that which instigated an end to the arms race between the two nations. Following the Cuban Missile Crisis the two leaders, Kennedy and Khrushchev, found a new respect for each other, and this laid the foundations for a strengthened understanding between the two countries. Yet above all things it caused the nations to realise their capabilities and become more aware of the consequences their Cold War could have on society not only at the present time, but for years to come.
It was October 14, 1962 when an American spy plane flew over Cuba. The images that were recovered on the flight would escalate a growing tension between the U.S and The Soviet Union. It would also bring fear to the world, as an action poorly thought out by the other side could have lead to a nuclear war. The Cuban Missile Crisis was the most controversial event in what we know as the Cold War. To understand the growing controversy between the United States and The Soviet Union, we first must travel back in history.
The Cuban Missile Crisis: JFK’s Second Shot at Cuba Although some historians have blamed Soviet aggression as the root cause of the Cuban Missile Crisis, they have neglected to account for the disruption in U.S.-Cuba relations caused by the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion which President John F. Kennedy had directed. The failure of the Bay of Pigs can be attributed to Kennedy’s overconfidence in the military even though the CIA knew American forces would be devastatingly outnumbered. So when Kennedy had received news of the Soviet missiles build up in Cuba during the October of 1962, the crisis was just a continuation of unresolved conflict. Fearing a nuclear war, the Kennedy Administration cautiously deliberated about possible approaches. The U.S. considered an air strike, an invasion, or a naval quarantine as an appropriate response to this crisis.
Cuban Missile Crisis Analysis Works Cited Missing The Cuban Missile Crisis was one of the most important events in United States history; it’s even easy to say world history because of what some possible outcomes could have been from it. The Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 was a major Cold War confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union. After the Bay of Pigs Invasion the USSR increased its support of Fidel Castro's Cuban regime, and in the summer of 1962, Nikita Khrushchev secretly decided to install ballistic missiles in Cuba. President Kennedy and the other leaders of our country were faced with a horrible dilemma where a decision had to be made. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara outlined three possible courses of action for the president: "The political course of action" of openly approaching Castro, Khrushchev, and U.S. allies in a gambit to resolve the crisis diplomatically, an option that McNamara and others considered unlikely to succeed; "a course of action that would involve declaration of open surveillance" coupled with "a blockade against offensive weapons entering Cuba"; and "military action directed against Cuba, starting with an air attack against the missiles" (Chang, 2).
The limited value of nuclear weapons does not outweigh the possible cataclysmic consequences of their existence. During the Cuban missile crisis the world was consumed with fear of what could possibly happen if two members of the four major powers entered into a thermonuclear war. The Cuban missile crisis occurred as a Soviet response to the United States placing Jupiter missiles in Turkey and Italy (George, 2014). For the Soviets putting nuclear missiles in Cuba was a strategic defensive decision in two ways. Firstly, Nikita Khrushchev, the leader of the Soviet Union, wanted to apply pressure on the United States and demonstrate what it felt like to be consistently vulnerable to nuclear weapons.
Although it seems logical, as it was called the Cuban missile crisis, that the crisis should mainly involve Cuba, it is more accurate to say that it was a collision between the two Super Powers; the Soviet Union and the USA. It was after all the American decision to cease trade with Cuba that was the most important trigger to the incident and it was the Russian missiles based in Cuba that caused the actual crisis. It appears that this crisis is yet another run in between a country with Communist ideas and a country with Capitalist beliefs. In conclusion, it seems that the difference in ideologies between these two main Super Powers has been the cause of many casualties and the Cuban missile crisis seems to be exactly the same, the two powers struggling with a peaceful co-existence.
The discovery of the nuclear missiles in Cuba was a vast turning point in the way that the world would progress in terms of communication and various entertainment and political positions from that point forward. Before the assumptions of the United States were proved about the Soviet Union holding nuclear weapons in Cuba, there was a great lack of communications between the nations that caused major conflict between these two nations. The moment the nations got connected many problems could be solved, but until that point in time, there was misunderstanding and an apprehension of the unknown among many people who inhabited the United Sates. The Cuban missile crisis was the beginning of a revolution in communications between nations, but the spark to a great deal of worry among the people of the United States and other surrounding nations. People just did not know what to believe when it came down to the effects that these nuclear weapons were going to have on the nation and the world as a whole.