The bay of pigs fiasco hardened the resolve of

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The Bay of Pigs fiasco hardened the resolve of Kennedy, Khrushchev, and Castro to gain the upper hand in this new Cold War hotspot. The CIA devised schemes for overthrowing Castro that in- volved sabotage and terrorism. In November 1961, CIA agents and Cuban exiles covertly traveled in speedboats from Florida to Cuba, where they burned sugar plantations and blew up factories and oil depots. The CIA also plotted to assassinate Castro by trying to poison his ice cream and cigars and enlisting Mafia crime bosses to kill him. Castro com- plained to Khrushchev about America’s murderous intentions, and in return received Soviet economic and military aid. Protecting communism in Cuba now became a major goal for the Soviet Union. On October 22, 1962, President Kennedy appeared on national television to deliver the stun- ning news that the Soviet Union was building missile launching pads in Cuba for short- and inter- mediate-range nuclear missiles. U.S. bases in Italy, Britain, and Turkey housed nuclear missiles aimed at the Soviet Union. Putting Soviet missiles in Cuba, a mere 90 miles from the American coast, would teach Americans “just what it feels like to have en- emy missiles pointing at you,” Khrushchev told his advisors. The Cuban Missile Crisis , a showdown in 1962 between the United States and the Soviet Union over Khrushchev’s decision to place Soviet missiles in Communist Cuba aimed at America, was underway. What was the ultimate significance of the Cuban Missile crisis? “We’re eyeball to eyeball, and I think the other fellow just blinked.” Secretary of State DEAN RUSK, upon receiving word that Soviet ships had turned back during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 View the Image JFK and Krushchev
What political and military considerations influenced Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis? Decision Kennedy opted for the quarantine. He sent the American navy 500 miles from Cuban shores to intercept Soviet vessels carrying missiles, and threatened a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union if missiles were launched from Cuba. Choices and Consequences THE CUBAN MISSILE CRISIS Long-range missiles (4,000–5,000 miles) launched from the USSR could already reach America, but short-range (1,100 miles) and intermediate-range (2,200 miles) nuclear-armed missiles in Cuba would help close the missile gap by giving the Soviets more weapons to use against the United States. Determined to get Soviet missiles out of Cuba, Kennedy and his advisors debated how to respond on October 16, 1962. Choices 1 Use air and ground forces to attack Cuba and destroy the missile sites. 2 Follow up an attack on Cuba with a full- scale invasion to depose Castro. 3 Negotiate with the Soviet Union and Cuba. 4 Use a naval quarantine to prevent Soviet-supplied missiles from reaching Cuba.

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