Cuban Missile Crisis

The Cuban Missile Crisis was a confrontation during the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States regarding the deployment of nuclear missiles in Cuba. The missiles had been placed to protect Cuba from further planned attacks after the failed Bay of Pigs invasion.

In 1961, the new US President, J.F. Kennedy supported an invasion of Cuba by anti-Castro supporters. The American government were hopeful that this invasion would lead to an uprising against Castro. The Bay of Pigs invasion consisted of fewer than 1,500 Cuban exiles, supported by the CIA. This invasion was a complete disaster and the invaders never got further than the beach. The whole episode was an embarrassment for Kennedy. It was impossible to hide the fact that the US government was involved and was forced to pay $53 million in food and medical supplied to have the captured invaders returned to the United States. From Castro's view point this invasion was evidence that the USA was working actively to overthrow his government.

The Cuban Missile Crisis began on the October 16th, 1962, when the United States reconnaissance data revealed Soviet nuclear missile installations in Cuba, these were shown to U.S. President John F. Kennedy. The crisis ended twelve days later when on October 28, 1962, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev announced that the installations would be dismantled.