From the findings at the U.N. meeting with Ambassador Stevenson and Zorin and the strong statements by the Soviets that disparaged the United States government, President Kennedy now felt that there were only two options besides only quarantining Cuba. According to a report by Professors Jerry Goldman and Giel Stein of Northwestern University, the first option, which the president favored, was to “negotiate them out, in other words trade them out” (“The Cuban Missile Crisis,” par. 100). In order to avoid this nuclear disaster, President Kennedy was willing to trade and take out his missiles in both Turkey and Italy while the Soviets and the Cubans had to remove their missiles from Cuba and the Soviet Union. In this scenario Khrushchev also wanted President Kennedy to “publicly guarantee that the United States will not invade Cuba” (“The Cuban Missile Crisis,” par. 88). The president found most of steps in this option to be favorable towards the United States, but he did not rule out the second plan, created by EX-COMM, which was to invade Cuba and forcibly remove the missiles from the country. Although the military leaders of the JCS found this a great opportunity for the United States to show their guns, President Kennedy seemed to back away from this option because he did not want to start World War III and because it was reported that approximately 18,500 soldiers were to become casualties during the first ten days of fighting in Cuba. Although President Kennedy wanted to negotiate with the Soviets in order to avoid a nuclear holocaust, his emotions swayed him to consider using an invasion because the Soviets did not want to listen to the pleas and proposed resolutions by the United States.
Blog Date: May 8, 2011
Historical Date: October 26, 1962