EXCOMM 2-3 - Members: Kira, Jennifer, Marjorie, Wil Gibb

DAYS 1-3 Tuesday, October 16 to Thursday, October 18

John F. Kennedy, the President of the U.S., has been presented with photographic evidence of Soviet missile launchers located on the island of Cuba, 90 miles from The United States. The launchers can be fitted with nuclear warheads for offensive strikes on U.S. sites as far away as Montana. You are members of EXCOMM, the group that will advise JFK throughout the ordeal.
You discuss many possible responses to the Societ presence in Cuba - an air strike, an invasion of mainland Cuba, a naval blockade, a diplomatic protest, and other ideas. You all realize that the decision that you make will be extremely crucial for the peace safety of your country and the world in general. After discussing all of the possible options, what do you advise President Kennedy to do, and why?
We think that we should talk this over with the Russians in a diplomatic meeting and ask them for peace talks, and why they have missile launchers on Cuba. If nothing is done at the talks and Russia remains hostile, we will send more extensive spy planes to monitor the progress of the missile launchers.
The actual decision was a naval 'quarantine' of all ships bound for Cuba. If the Russian ships carried any missiles or weapons, they would be stopped. If they were safe, they would be allowed to pass. This wasn't called a naval blockade to prevent war.

Want to see the actual photographs? / Want to see a map of the missile range?

DAY 4 Friday, October 19

The Washington Press Corps has caught on to the important meetings taking place at the White House and are pushing for more information. How do you suggest the President should respond to all of the inquiries about what's going on?
I wouldn't say anything to the press, except that the matters are none of their business. He is the president and shouldn't have to tell the press all of the matters that are going on inside of the White House. He should just tell them that he always has meetings and that these aren't any different than normal.
They lie to the press and send Kennedy to Chicago on normal business for the weekend. The crisis was mounting, so he had to call the trip off. The cover up was that JFK had a cold, and to try to be more convincing, he wore a hat, which he never did.

DAY 5-6 Saturday, October 20-Sunday, October 21

The US military has been placed on full alert, and American allies have been notified that there is some serious trouble brewing with the Soviets. Congress, which is on recess, has been alerted and party leaders are aware of the situation. Nearly 200,000 American troops are moved to Key West, Florida - the largest invasion force ever assembled on American soil.

DAY 7 Monday, October 22

The President has signed an executive order enforcing the blockade, but the the American public has still not been informed of the mounting situation with the Soviets and Cubans. Do you suggest that JFK address the public? If so, how much information should be released to the American people?

He should adress the publuc that the naval blockade is just another safeguard to contain communism, and there is nothing to worry about. He should not tell them about the amassed troops in Florida.
He told the public everything. He said that they have missile launchers and that any Russian missile strike against anywhere in the western hemisphere it will be viewed as an act of war against the United States.
Want to see a clip of the speech?

DAYS 8-9 Tuesday, October 23 - Wednesday, October 24

The US quarantine is put into effect, and Cuba bulks up its military along the coasts in preparation for a possible invasion. Cuba calls the U.S. a bully in the United Nations, and Moscow accuses the U.S. of piracy.
There is information that the Soviet ships in the Caribbean are being shadowed by Soviet submarines. A Soviet ship approaches the quarantine line and attempts to break through the quarantine. What course of action to you suggest in dealing with the ship?
This will be viewed as an act of agression and if the ship is not stopped by peaceful means we will try to sink it with torpedoes. We will tell the Soviets that the ship tried to break through the blockade and say that we viewed this as an act of agression.
They let the ship go through, and all of the other Soviet ships out to sea turned back and went back to Russia.
You also have evidence that the Soviets are installing actual weapons in the Cuban missile sites that will be able to fire on the U.S. in a matter of days. Your decision is now a matter of peace or war. What is your suggested course for the President - fire weapons on the existing missile sites, set an ultimatum for removal of the missiles, destroy Soviet ships in the Caribbean, send troops to Cuba, move nuclear subs toward the USSR, or attempt any further means of peaceful diplomacy?
We should set an ultimatum- they remove the missiles or we do an air stricke and blow them up ourselves.
Kenny issued an ultimatum to Cuba- remove the missiles or the U.S. will attack.

DAYS 10-12 Thursday, October 25 - Saturday, October 27

Proceedings are becoming heated at the United Nations. The U.S. openly challenges USSR at the United Nations, without getting a desired response. Tensions remain high between the two countries. The United States military forces are set at DEFCON-2 - the highest in history. Want to see clips of the UN discussion?
Nikita Khrushchev, the Soviet premier, has made two offers to Presdient Kennedy. The first is to remove the missiles from Cuba in exchange for no American invasion of Cuba, and the second demands U.S. removal of missiles from Turkey in return for the removal of Soviet missiles from Cuba. In the meantime, an American U-2 spy plane has been shot down over Cuba. What do you suggest the President should do in this situation - accept either of the offers, make a counter offer, or demand immediate removal or else troops and weapons will be deployed?
We would remove our missiles from Turkey in exchange for Russian missile removal from Cuba because it keeps both sides happy.
Kennedy accepts the first proposal and acts as if he didn't recieve the second alternative.

DAY 13 Sunday, October 28

What is the result of the Cuban Missile Crisis? What impact does the crisis have on the Cold War and the relationship between the US and the USSR?