In the Eye of the Storm: Castro, Kruschchev & Kennedy and the Cuban Missile Crisis

Carlos Lechuga, Author, Mirta Muniz, Editor, Mary Todd, Translator Ocean Press (AU) $15.95 (0p) ISBN 978-1-875284-87-0
Lechuga details the potentially disastrous Cuban missile crisis of October 1962 from the rare Cuban perspective. As then ambassador to the UN, he brings frightening perspectives to the provocations between the Soviets and U.S. as they escalated beyond Cuban influence. U.S. missiles siloed in Turkey prompted Soviet premier Khrushchev to even the playing field by establishing a continental nuclear threat in the Western Hemisphere. For his part, Castro accepted Soviet missiles to reduce the risk of another American invasion after the Bay of Pigs fiasco a year before. But with the missiles en route, Kennedy ``quarantined'' (i.e., embargoed) Cuba, making it a pawn in a battle between superpowers. Cuba, Lechuga asserts, ``didn't know what was going on'' and wasn't consulted on key issues. On October 27, Khrushchev made a deal offering to dismantle Cuban missiles if the U.S. would do the same in Turkey, and though the missiles and bombers were removed, Cuba was left with a 30-year legacy of U.S. political and economic belligerency. Besides a coolly analytical narrative of this terrifying moment, Lechuga has assembled intriguing documents, many never before published. He reveals his involvement with Kennedy officials in improving American-Cuban relations prior to the President's November 1963 assassination, which he strongly suggests was orchestrated by the CIA. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 05/01/1995
Release date: 05/01/1995
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