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Cuba and the Cold War


Fulgencio Batista

Fidel Castro

Che Guevara

Raul Castro w/Fidel & Che


Dwight Eisenhower

John F. Kennedy

Robert F. Kennedy

Robert McNamara

Dean Rusk

Adlai Stevenson

Maxwell Taylor

Curtis Le May


Nikita Khrushchev

Andrei Gromyko

Anatoly Dobrynin

Esso. US business & Mafia lost American support in 1958 after forced to hold elections where most Cubans refused to vote Fidel Castro (1926. Cuba s debt policy.): leader of July 26th Movement goal to overthrow Batista regime 1st attempt 26 July 1953 arrested.BACKGROUND: Spanish-American War (1898):  US defeats Spain. including freedom of Cuba to negotiate treaties. i. & transfer of land to foreign power except USA  MOST IMPORTANTLY gave US right to intervene in Cuban affairs  1902: Cuba gains independence from US United States in Cuba: great amount of influence and some interventions in Cuban affairs economic influence on Cuba: largest source of investment in Cuba and export market for Cuba many major US corporations influential in Cuba. which has colonized Cuba 1901-1902:  1901: Platt Amendment terms for transfer of power to Cuba  granted US considerable influence over Cuba. later exiled returned to Cuba 1956 w/brother. several major US banks. Che & supporters begins insurgency against Batista based in Sierra Maestra Mountains victory on 1 January 1959 . ITT. and number of companies relied on Cuban sugar. 1933-1944 & 1952-1959 dictator whose 2nd period of rule incredibly repressive & corrupt supported by US govt. including owning Cuban land and operating plants: Standard Oil. convicted. Coca-Cola & Hershey s American organized crime heavily involved in Cuba Fulgencio Batista (1901-1973): y y y y leader of Cuba. Texaco.e.

Now we shall have to pay for those sins. little or no compensation land redistribution cleaned out mafia confiscated assets from US corporations & landowners (about $1 billion of a total of $25 billion) US responded with trade restrictions Feb. 24 October 1963 "I believe that there is no country in the world. Kennedy interview with Jean Daniel. In the matter of the Batista regime. 1960: Soviets open market to Cuban sugar US fears Cuba would become Soviet ally Castro continues to nationalize and redistribute land feared US intervention Oct. o support for Castro in Cuba Castro continues to confiscate US assets influence of Raul & Che played a role as well seek o relations w/USSR July 1960: Khrushchev declares willingness to defend Cuba nukes Sept.´ Source: Che Guevara interview with Henry Brandon. including the African regions.probably not Marxist until after came to power Source: John F. October 1962 "Our revolution is endangering all American possessions in Latin America. 1960: Castro denounced Yankee Imperialism US placed embargo on all trade with Cuba late 1960: two US diplomats expelled from island . in part owing to my country¶s policies during the Batista regime« I can assure you that I have understood the Cubans. when he justifiably called for justice and especially yearned to rid Cuba of corruption. I approved the proclamation which Fidel Castro made in the Sierra Maestra. The Times. I will go even further: to some extent it is as though Batista was the incarnation of a number of sins on the part of the United States. 1960: Eisenhower bans all exports to Cuba Cuba o relations with USSR Khrushchev seizing new opportunity excited by revolution reminiscent of Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 March 1960: CIA begins training Cuban exiles as potential invasion force to topple Castro 1960: Soviets begin supplying advice & weapons to Cuba µ March 1960: Le Coubre incident US blamed. I am in agreement with the first Cuban revolutionaries. We are telling these countries to make their own revolution. including any and all the countries under colonial domination." Cuba under Fidel: expropriated private property. where economic colonization. humiliation and exploitation were worse than in Cuba.

1961: John F. 1961: US withdrew recognition of Cuba.3 Jan. Kennedy becomes POTUS . ending diplomatic relations 20 Jan.

& probably assassination economic & diplomatic isolation: expanded & continued embargo. supported by CIA. organize antiCastro movement. maneuvered to expel Cuba from Organization of American States (OAS) military pressure: ORTSAC war game designed to overthrow an imaginary dictator Khrushchev & Cuba: Berlin Wall Crisis heightened tensions both w/USA & some Eastern European allies. 1.400 Cuban insurgents. economic troubles & struggling reforms Feb. Flexible Response & Cuba covert action to topple Castro: Operation Mongoose sabotage. especially Ulbricht (GDR) o competition from China for support from developing nations false reports & alarms about US 1st Strike on USSR domestic criticisms for cutting defense budget.Bay of Pigs: Ó 17 April 1961: c. invade Cuba at the Bay of Pigs Ó utter & complete failure US hoped would lead to internal uprising against Castro solidified Castro s popularity even further huge propaganda victory drove Castro even further into Soviet arms Kennedy. 1961: Kennedy Administration publicly announced that any missile gap that existed actually favored USA not USSR May 1962: holiday on Black Sea contemplated US missiles in Turkey just beyond the horizon made connection to Castro s o requests for more help decided to deploy strategic missiles to Cuba probably thought would remain secret until fait accompli .

5) naval blockade of Cuba. not offensive weapons . 2) use diplomatic pressure to force USSR to remove missiles. 3) air attack on missiles. 16: US surveillance shows build up of missile sites in Cuba.Cuban Missile Crisis: 16-28 Oct. awareness & unwillingness to be seen as Appeasers (influence of appeasement in 1938) ExComm s possible courses of action: 1) do nothing. termed as a quarantine US Joint Chiefs. 4) full-scale military invasion. 18: Kennedy meets with Anatoly Dobrynin & Andrei Gromyko. 16: ExComm (Executive Committee of the National Security Council) convened ExComm: ploy by USSR for advantage in Berlin?. who claim missiles for defensive purposes only. recommended military action Oct. including Maxwell Taylor & Curtis Le May. 1962 closest world came to nuclear war between US & USSR changed the course & tone of the Cold War Oct. including SAM (surface-to-air missiles) Oct. or.

23: JFK considers trading US missiles in Turkey (slated for removal) for missiles in Cuba US relying on backchannel diplomacy Oct. 24: Khrushchev ordered Soviet ships en route to Cuba to turn around or stop construction of missile site sped up however enough missiles already in Cuba . a strict quarantine on all offensive military equipment under shipment to Cuba is being initiated. be turned back. We are not at this time. however. 22: JFK informs the American public ³It shall be the policy of this nation to regard any nuclear missile launched from Cuba against any nation in the Western Hemisphere as an attack on the United States. denying the necessities of life as the Soviets attempted to do in their Berlin blockade of 1948´ Oct.´ ³To halt this offensive buildup. 20: ExComm vote in favor of blockade or quarantine Oct.Oct. requiring a full retaliatory response upon the Soviet Union. if found to contain cargoes of offensive weapons. All ships of any kind bound for Cuba from whatever nation and port will. This quarantine will be extended. to other types of cargo and carriers. if needed.

25: US Ambassador to UN. demands USSR admit there are missiles in Cuba Oct. to halt the further introduction of such weapon systems into Cuba. shift in power??? New message from Khrushchev arrives during EXCOMM meeting Khrushchev: seemingly confirms the Radio Moscow offer Oct. TASS. 24: Soviet news Agency. to ensure the carrying out and continuation of these commitments (a) to y . 27: US U-2 shot down over Cuba US & USSR official meet to discuss missile trade EXCOMM meeting where JFK convinced to ignore 2nd message and respond to 1st emotional message: "As I read your letter. on our part. would agree upon the establishment of adequate arrangements through the United Nations. 27: Radio Moscow broadcasts message from Khrushchev offering a trade of missiles in Turkey for those in Cuba EXCOMM debates why the change disagreement in Politburo. report that Khrushchev sent telegram to JFK stating that US pirate actions would lead to war & US blockade was an act of aggression Oct. 2) We. You will declare that the United States will not invade Cuba with its troops and will not support any other forces which might intend to invade Cuba.Oct. lunches w/John Scali of ABC News to ask if Scali s friends in State Dept. Then the necessity of the presence of our military specialists in Cuba will disappear. Adlai Stevenson. B-52s deployed with nukes in put on 15 minute notice Aleksander Fomin." terms conveyed by Fomin but letter seemed emotionally charge giving uncertainty to its veracity Oct. would be interested in a diplomatic solution becomes basis for settlement Night of Oct. will declare that our ships bound for Cuba are not carrying any armaments. with suitable safe-guards. KGB Station Chief in Washington. the key elements of your proposals which seem generally acceptable as I understand them are as follows: 1) You would agree to remove these weapons systems from Cuba under appropriate United Nations observation and supervision. 26: US goes to Defcon 2 (only confirmed time in history). and undertake. for our part. 26: message apparently from Khrushchev arrives: "I propose: we.

" JFK agreed that US would abandon any effort or plans to invade Cuba now and in the future Khrushchev promised to remove the missiles from Cuba US agrees to removal of Jupiter missiles in Turkey. its sovereignty.remove promptly the quarantine measures now in effect and (b) to give assurances against the invasion of Cuba. not to intrude themselves and not to permit our territory to be used as a bridgehead for the invasion of Cuba. and secondly. y negotiations between two govts. plans for how to respond to the Soviet Union in Europe. because we're going to need one. not without potential problems: put Khrushchev in a bind... because sure as hell they're going to do something there"." Basis for the deal that will end the crisis however. The U. has issued a new order on the dismantling of the weapons which you describe as 'offensive' and their crating and return to the Soviet Union. who knew what was happening w/power in USSR military preparations for an invasion continued Defense Secretary Robert McNamara stated that they had to "have two things ready: a government for Cuba." JFK immediately responds calling Khrushchev's letter was: "an important and constructive contribution to peace". He continued this with a formal letter: "I consider my letter to you of October twenty-seventh and your reply of today as firm undertakings on the part of both our governments which should be promptly carried out. that it take the pledge not to interfere in internal affairs. will make a statement in the framework of the Security Council in reference to Cuba as follows: it will declare that the United States of America will respect the inviolability of Cuban borders. over missile exchange (Cuba for Turkey) continued Khrushchev response in letter transmitted via Radio Moscow: "the Soviet government. territory or from the territory of other countries neighboring to Cuba. in addition to previously issued instructions on the cessation of further work at the building sites for the weapons. but USSR promise to keep this aspect of the agreement a secret AFTERMATH y y y y y y y Hotline Agreement--direct communication link between Moscow & Washington 1963: Nuclear Test Ban Treaty--prohibited all nuclear tests except those below ground USSR determined to equal US nuclear weapons in quantity (achieved 1973) China accused USSR of being a Paper Tiger Khrushchev position weakened inside USSR Politburo US became convinced USSR would not go to war over a communist country--Vietnam Castro more secure in his rule .S. either from U. and will restrain those who would plan to carry an aggression against Cuba.S.

y y Cuba & Berlin entrenched as outposts of their respective bloc--W. and West Berlin no longer needed attention." begins steps that would lead to Detente .R. Khrushchev's and Ulbricht's threats had lost credibility. Smyser: "The total victory that Kennedy could thus claim in Cuba had a dramatic effect in Berlin.