The Cuban Missile Crisis

  • Created by: wanjikar
  • Created on: 28-01-20 09:47


  • 1959- Fidel Castro led a revolution in Cuba
  • The US extracted all investments and businesses in Cuba
  • April 1961 – a group of Cuban exiles, backed by the CIA attempted to invade at the Bay of Pigs which was a failure. There was no official connection between the USA and the exiles but nonetheless, it was humiliating

  • The USA refused to buy Cuba's main export- sugar
  • Castro then declared his conversion to communism
  • 14th October 1962 – a U2 spy plane took photos of Cuba which showed that soviet intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBM) sites were being constructed. The missiles launched from these would be able to hit most US cities
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The Crisis

  • USA placed a naval blockade (quarantine) around Cuba to prevent the USSR from delivering any military materials by sea.

  • JFK televised address to the nation

  • The world waits as 18 soviet ships continue to sail towards Cuba – the world appears to be on the brink of nuclear war

  • 24th October – the ships turned around. JFK demanded the removal of all missiles in Cuba. Failure to do so would lead in a US invasion of Cuba

  • 26th October – Khrushchev sent a letter offering the removal of missiles if the blockade was removed

  • 27th October – Khrushchev sends the 2nd letter. He would remove the missiles if the USA removed the missiles it had in turkey.

  • JFK agrees to terms of the 1st letter and ignores the 2nd letter. Khrushchev accepts the offer.

  • Privately, the USA agreed to remove missiles from turkey much later after the USSR removes the missiles from Cuba.

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  • The USA was considered to have won and JFK was seen as a hero
  •  A period of detétente followed: A hotline was set up between Moscow and Washington, the partial test ban treaty, nuclear non- proliferation treaty
  • Khrushchev was sacked in 1964
  • After coming so close to a nuclear war, there was great relief among the people
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