What was the Cuban Missile Crisis?

This is what I know.

USA and Russia only superpowers after WWII, begin to throw tantrums at each other in 1947 called "The Cold War"

Russia is a communist country

All I know, please explain to me what the the Cuban Missile Crisis was

Thank You :)

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  • 8 years ago
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    The Cuban Missile Crisis was a tense confrontation between the Soviet Union and the United States over the Soviet deployment of nuclear missiles in Cuba. The crisis began on October 16, 1962 and lasted for thirteen days. It is regarded by many as the moment when the Cold War was closest to becoming nuclear war.

    The U.S. had begun to deploy fifteen Jupiter IRBM (intermediate-range ballistic missiles) nuclear missiles near Izmir, Turkey, which directly threatened cities in the western sections of the Soviet Union.

    Soviet technology was well developed in the field of medium-range ballistic missiles (MRBMs), as opposed to ICBMs. The Soviets did not believe they could achieve parity in ICBMs before 1970, but saw that a certain kind of equality could be quickly reached by placing missiles in Cuba. Soviet MRBMs on Cuba, with a range of 2,000 km (1,200 statute miles), could threaten Washington, DC and around half of the U.S. SAC bases (of nuclear-armed bombers) with a flight time of under twenty minutes. In addition, the U.S. radar warning system was oriented towards the USSR and would provide little warning of a launch from Cuba.

    Khrushchev had devised the plan in May of 1962, and by late July over sixty Soviet ships were en-route to Cuba, with some of them carrying military material. John McCone, director of the CIA, warned Kennedy that some of the ships were probably carrying missiles but a meeting of John and Robert Kennedy, Dean Rusk and Robert McNamara decided that the Soviets would not try such a thing.

    The Soviet government determined in 1959 that any future war would be largely nuclear and would probably be a world wide war and in that same year the Strategic Rocket Forces were founded. Under Khruschev, the Soviet government became increasingly militaristic due in part to the new administration of Kennedy and his accompanying rearmament program. The Soviets decided to install nuclear weapons, in the form of medium and short range ballistic missiles, in Cuba, a Caribbean nation off the coast of Florida with a Communist government under Fidel Castro. Castro had sought Soviet support after the collapse of its relations with the U.S. due to the expropriation of U.S. properties in Cuba and a subsequent CIA-backed attempt of invasion of Cuba known as the Bay of Pigs Invasion (1961). Soviet reasoning was two-fold — first, to defend this new Communist state from an American or American-sponsored invasion, and second, to shift the nuclear balance of power away from the U.S. by putting American cities directly within the range of Soviet missiles.

    US President John F. Kennedy announced that American reconnaissance flights had revealed nuclear missiles in Cuba, sent from the Soviet Union. Kennedy ordered a 'quarantine' of all offensive military equipment under shipment to Cuba. He stated that a missile attack from Cuba would bring 'a full retaliatory response' on the Soviet Union. Nikita Khrushchev agreed to remove the missiles and bombers from Cuba on 2 November, ending the most dangerous global crisis since 1945.

  • Anonymous
    8 years ago

    The Cuban Missile Crisis was when the communists were secretly developing dangerous missiles in Cuba behind the backs of the USA & the UN & the USA had to figure out how to stop the threat without triggering the communists. USA also had proof from a U-2 plane flying above Cuban airspace

  • 8 years ago

    In 1959 President Eisenhower made a deal with Italy and Turkey to install American missile bases in those countries. The Soviets felt threatened by the American missile base in Turkey because those missiles had a far enough range that they could reach Moscow, the capital of the Soviet Union. The Soviets wanted a missile base of their own with missiles that could reach Washington D.C. and the U.S. government leaders, so they attempted to install a missile base in Cuba (Cuba is only 90 miles from the U.S. mainland) but the U.S. discovered their plans before the Soviet missile base in Cuba became operational.

    The attempt by the Soviets to install a missile base in Cuba and the U.S. reaction to it and their attempts to prevent it became known as the Cuban Missile Crisis. It was a crisis because the Soviets and Americans came very close to igniting a nuclear war.

  • 8 years ago

    The Cuban missile crisis came about in late 1962.

    Cuba had allied itself with eastern bloc counties and after the bay of pigs US backed invasion of cube and ‘Operation Mongoose’ in mid 1962 the Soviet Union started the planning and construction of short and medium range missile bases on the island.

    These missiles, had they become operational, would have proven too close to the US and not given enough warning of a potential nuclear attack for the US to intercept them or to launch a counter strike. This would mean that the USSR would be able to severely damage the United States before it could react in any nuclear exchange.

    The US government deemed this as unacceptable and organises a blockade of the island to stop any missiles reaching the island. This in turn lead to a standoff between the US and USSR in the Caribbean sea.

    The crisis almost ended in a nuclear exchange but for the actions of Vasili Arkhipov, second in command of a Soviet submarine who argued against the launch of a nuclear torpedo, when trapped by elements of the US navy.

    Eventually the two sides stepped back from the brink of WW3 and agreed several things.

    The Soviets would remove all nuclear capable missiles from Cuba

    The US would remove all its nuclear capable missiles from Turkey (although this was kept secret) - See Louie O's answer for details on missiles in Turkey

    The creation of the ‘Hotline’ between Washington and Moscow.

    I THINK all of this is correct but it is not my specialist subject area, by all means take dropko’s advice and check wiki.

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  • 8 years ago

    A contest of prestige and ego and national pride. After the Bay Of Pigs fiasco, the US wanted to show the world we could stand our ground with somebody; allowing Cuba the ability to launch ballistic missiles against us would have shown us to be a very weak country not worth taking seriously by anybody else.

    In that way, Cuba was the same as Vietnam: a demonstration that we would fight.

  • bozko
    Lv 4
    8 years ago

    thank jimmy wales for wikipedia.

    everything you'd want to know is in

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuban_missile_crisis

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