Following his gut-wrenching meetings with both EX-COMM and the JCS, President Kennedy was on full alert and told military leaders to prepare their men for a likely invasion of Cuba. Adlai Stevenson also played a huge role as the American Ambassador to the United Nations when he questioned Soviet Ambassador to the United Nations, Valerian Zorin, on whether nuclear warheads were on the island of Cuba. In an article titled Adlai Stevenson on the website Thinkquest.org, during a conference at the United Nations, Ambassador Stevenson asked Ambassador Zorin if there were nuclear missiles on the Cuba, in which he denied, and Ambassador Stevenson calmly responded by stating, “You have denied that they exist, and I want to know whether I have understood you correctly. … I am prepared to wait for my answer until hell freezes over, if that’s your decision. And I am also prepared to present the evidence in this room” (“Adlai Stevenson,” par. 4). Immediately after stating this, several large photographs, taken by U-2 spy planes, were presented on national television, and these high quality pictures depicted the bomb assembly plants scattered throughout Cuba. Stunning millions of viewers and Ambassador Zorin alike, the American public now felt that an invasion was absolutely necessary because of the threat posed by the unstable Cubans and fiery Soviets. Tempers flared once again, and it would become worse for both the Americans and Soviets as the world continued to watch.
Blog Date: May 7, 2011
Historical Date: October 25, 1962