Kubaflagge vor einem blauen Himmel © Jeremy Bezanger / unsplash.com

The Cuban Missile Crisis

Mittwoch, 05. Oktober 2022, 9-14 Uhr

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60 years ago, in October 1962, the Cuban Missile Crisis brought the world to the brink of a nuclear war. Due to the declassification of many secret primary sources in the past decades a much more accurate description of the crisis and the broader historical context can be given. That includes the US policy against Cuba and its leader Fidel Castro (Bay of Pigs invasion; CIA Operation Mongoose), Khrushchev’s motivation to station nuclear weapons on Cuba, the respective crisis management, the use of media and backchannel diplomacy, Cuba’s role, open and secret agreements, and the aftermath of the crisis with the beginning of détente policy.

Numerous archival sources, film and audio clips, photos, cartoons, and movies will be presented and analyzed, including excerpts from the declassified audio recordings President John F. Kennedy secretly made of many of the meetings of his crisis team, a unique historical source. Kennedy and Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev, who both bear responsibility for the dangerous crisis, found a way to end the crisis peacefully and without the losing too much face. They also started to build trust and worked on détente agreements. With the dangers of a global confrontation caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Cuban Missile Crisis can provide lessons about crisis management and crisis resolution that once again could be of special relevance.

This teacher seminar is part of a larger program on the Cuban Missile Crisis 60 years after the so called “Thirteen Days.” Under the direction of Dr. Andreas Etges, students of the Amerika-Institut of the University of Munich (LMU) will curate a pop-up exhibit on the Cuban Missile Crisis to be shown at the Amerikahaus in the second half of October. They will also create online content that will allow more in-depth discussion of the different issues and the inclusion of multimedia content. Students will also offer tours of their exhibit for high school students and others. In addition, a stage(d) reading of primary sources is planned.

09:00    The Cold War in the Early 1960s
09:30     Cuba and the United States
10:00     The Cuban Missile Crisis I: Deployment and Discovery of the Soviet Nuclear Missiles
10:45     Coffee break
11:15     The Cuban Missile Crisis II: Escalation
12:00     The Cuban Missile Crisis III: Finding an Agreement
12:30     Lessons Learned: Détente and the Aftermath of the Cuban Missile Crisis
13:00     Open discussion
14:00     End

Speaker: Dr. Andreas Etges, Amerika-Institut LMU Munich
Registration fee: € 10 per teacher seminar

Please register via our registration form (below) or online via FIBS.
FIBS: Stiftung Bayerisches Amerikahaus gGmbH

Photo: ©Jeremy Bezanger / unsplash.com

Stiftung Bayerisches Amerikahaus


Karolinenplatz 3, 80333, München

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