LA history &politics
The Cuban Missile
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 ...view middle of the document...
This rivalry created a precarious situation for the world, and “From the end of World War II until the fall of communism in the late 1980s, the Cold War rivalry between the Soviet Union and the United States dominated international relations” (Thompson 38). The people of the United States supported the Cold War, but were also heightened to the fact that the conflict meant increased military tension between the two countries. In addition to the Cold War conflict with just the Soviet Union, all communist countries became part of the United States’ campaign of domination. Eventually, Cuba took a front seat in this conflict.
The United States had supported the government of Cuba prior to the takeover of the country by Fidel Castro in a proclaimed revolution against injustices to the people. Although publicly taking a stand against Castro, in reality “President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s administration welcomed the Cuban revolution, for Batista had long been an embarrassing ally, and a friendly, democratic government in Cuba, addressing urgent social reform, would be far more stable and reliable” (Brugioni 38). The public, however, while not in favor of communism or Cuba, was also not in favor of taking action against the new government. In fact, “Throughout the early 1960s, the public was opposed to the Castro regime and concerned about the spread of communism in the Western Hemisphere, but it rejected United States military action to remove Castro” (Thompson 76). Even as the crisis continued, the American people were not in favor of an overt military attack because of what it could have meant for the safety of not just the United States, but also of the world. The government of the United States soon decided to take action against the Cuban government under Castro.
The Bay of Pigs invasion, as it came to be known, was an attempt by the United States to overthrow Castro’s regime. Initially planned under Eisenhower, Kennedy was the one to put the plan into action. At the end “There were no risings, and US forces did nothing to support the exiles. Within two days over 100 exiles had been killed and nearly 1,200 had surrendered” (Brugioni 39). Without question, the Bay of Pigs invasion contributed to the United States government’s, President Kennedy’s in particular, tension with Cuba. In fact, “the episode put the administration under severe pressure and apart from the nuclear considerations, JFK could not afford the encounter to embarrass him politically – he had already been humiliated about Cuba the year before at the failed Bay of Pigs invasion” (Brugioni 60). Tensions in Cuba toward the United States also increased. According to Brugioni, “to Castro, and to a large proportion of the Cuban people, American domination was a root cause of Cuba’s problems” (63). The United States’ stand against Cuba also intensified, in part due to President Kennedy’s failure in the Bay of Pigs invasion. In fact, “Unknown to the American public at the time of the...