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© Boardworks Ltd 2004 1 of 15 Why was there a Cuban Missile Crisis? The Cold War For more detailed instructions, see the Getting Started presentation.

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Presentation on theme: "© Boardworks Ltd 2004 1 of 15 Why was there a Cuban Missile Crisis? The Cold War For more detailed instructions, see the Getting Started presentation."— Presentation transcript:

1 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 1 of 15 Why was there a Cuban Missile Crisis? The Cold War For more detailed instructions, see the Getting Started presentation. This icon indicates the slide contains activities created in Flash. These activities are not editable.

2 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 2 of 15 What we will learn today What we will learn today: 1.Learn how the Cuban Missile Crisis was the ‘hottest’ moment of the Cold War. 2.Examine the significance of Cuba. 3.Explore the decisions made by both Superpowers. 4.Establish the impact of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

3 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 3 of 15 The individuals involved…

4 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 4 of 15 The significance of Cuba Cuba is a large island in the Caribbean, about 90 miles from Miami, Florida, USA. Why do you think that the USA was worried? Before 1959, the USA had many troops stationed in Cuba and had vast sums of money invested in the country. The Cuban government was seen by many as corrupt. In 1959, the anti-capitalist Fidel Castro lead a revolution and took power by force. He asked for economic assistance. When the USA refused, Castro made a deal with the USSR.

5 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 5 of 15 The Bay of Pigs fiasco In April 1961 US-backed Cuban exiles invaded Cuba at the Bay of Pigs. The USA thought this would start a revolution against Castro. Complete your own spider diagram about the Bay of Pigs. What would this make Castro feel? How might he react? How did the USA appear after the event? What could the USA now do? Who else might now get involved? What would they want? The invasion was a total disaster. Cubans were pleased with Castro’s reforms, offering improved living and social conditions. Castro had overwhelming support. Impact

6 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 6 of 15 After the Bay of Pigs invasion, Castro was worried about further invasions. He asked for Khrushchev's help – and the USSR promised to help Cuba with weapons. Why did Khrushchev offer to help? Think why Khrushchev was only too willing to help! Opportunity to redress the ‘failure’ over Berlin. Putting nuclear weapons on Cuba would put pressure on the USA. USSR nuclear weapon deployment was far inferior to USA. Would mean USSR had weapons base within 90 miles of US eastern coast. Khrushchev knew that USA had missiles in Turkey – he wanted the equivalent. US missiles in Turkey meant USA had ‘total coverage’ of USSR.

7 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 7 of 15 Who had the most nuclear bases?

8 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 8 of 15 On 15 October 1962, a U-2 spy plane took photographs of Cuba. October 1962 – what happened? Just how serious was this? These showed the construction of long-range Soviet missile launching sites. No actual missiles were identified. Further spy photographs revealed Soviet ships travelling towards Cuba carrying long-range nuclear weapons.

9 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 9 of 15 How dangerous were missiles on Cuba?

10 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 10 of 15 What could the USA do? President Kennedy organized ExComm (the Executive Committee). This was group of political and military advisors including Robert Kennedy and Theodore Sorensen. They debated what to do day and night for nearly seven days! The wrong decision would lead to nuclear war.

11 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 11 of 15 do nothing launch a full-scale invasion of Cuba send US troops into Berlin undertake a ‘surgical strike’ on the missile bases blockade the island order the CIA to assassinate Castro. Put yourself in the position of ExComm. Consider each of the below proposals. Suggest positive and negative reasons for acting on each. What decision should ExComm have taken?

12 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 12 of 15 What did the USA do? On 22 October, Kennedy announced a “strict quarantine on all offensive military equipment under shipment to Cuba”. If Soviet vessels did not stop, US ships had orders to fire. Why do you think Kennedy took this decision? At the same time, Kennedy ordered his forces to be ready for war. The world had never been closer to nuclear conflict. Kennedy stated that if the blockade is ‘forced’, the USA will be at war. The Soviet ships continued to sail towards Cuba.

13 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 13 of 15 The impact of the blockade Click on the arrows to move through the timeline.

14 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 14 of 15 Turkey missile deal remained secret Test-ban treaty signed in 1963 – ban on testing nuclear weapons. Telephone hotline set up in 1963. Cold War never became as serious again. Despite future tensions, there was a major change in attitude. Is this fair? Why should Khrushchev be praised? Both superpowers realized how close they had come to nuclear war. Kennedy appeared to have stood up to communism – massive public opinion boost. Khrushchev came out of the crisis badly – criticized both for trying to place missiles in Cuba, and also for giving into the USA. Impact of the Cuban Missile Crisis, 1962 The impact of the crisis

15 © Boardworks Ltd 2004 15 of 15 Consider the impact of the crisis. Arrange these statements in order of importance.


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