It is a well known fact that United States and Soviet Union came close to nuclear war due to the Cuban Missile Crisis. President John Kennedy's diplomatic efforts helped to resolve the crisis in the peaceful manner for which he received international acclaim. President Kennedy's popularity soared after this incident. This coincided with the elections in US.
Kennedy enjoyed minor majority in congress and had to bear the brunt due to his domestic policies. Some critics even vocal expressing their discontent over the Cuban Missile Crisis which they believe was engineered by Kennedy to increase his clout in congress. Cuban Missile Crisis was a blessing in disguise for John Kennedy who witnessed rising popularity due to his handling of Cuban crisis. There is a debate as to how much domestic policy considerations had an impact during Cuban Missile Crisis.
[...] Although this effectively ended the Cuban Missile Crisis between the two powers, the issue of Cuba still remained prominent on the run up to the November elections. Republicans charged the Kennedy administration with allowing the Peril” to remain in America's sphere of influence and the presidential pledge of non invasion had taken away any possible means of ever ousting the regime. Also with Castro's refusal to allow United Nation officials inspect the island suspicions grew as to whether the missiles had actually been dismantled. [...]
[...] The main point of contention is whether Kennedy was concerned over the domestic consequences of the Cuban missiles and his response. The traditionalist approach highlights Kennedy's concern for the international implications of the missiles. Although the missiles had little impact on the overall U.S-Soviet military balance, they had an effect on the political balance. The successful deployment of missiles on Cuba would prove Soviet ability to act in a zone vital to American Security interests. This would damage America's international prestige and could cause its allies in Europe to question the ability of the U.S to contain communism. [...]
[...] The Republicans suspected that Kennedy used the Cuban Missile Crisis to win at the November elections. It is true that in the autumn of 1962 Kennedy wanted a more sympathetic congress. In 1961 only 48.4 percent of Kennedy's legislative initiatives gained congressional approval and by 1962 only 44.6 percent were approved. Kennedy hoped that the November elections would expand his influence in congress. This was an arduous task, only once in the twentieth century had the party of the President in office improved its standings at the midterm position in the House of Representatives and not since 1934 had the party in power enhanced its strength in the Senate. [...]
[...] Bibliography: Lebow, N., Domestic Politics and the Cuban Missile Crisis, Diplomatic History, XIV (4-1990) p471-492 Paterson, G., and Brophy, J,. October Missiles and November Elections: The Cuban Missile Crisis and American Politics 1962, Journal of American History, LXXIII (1986) p87-119 Sorensen, C., Kennedy: Special Counsel to the late President, (Hodder and Stroughton Ltd, London, 1965) Scott, V., Macmillan, Kennedy and the Cuban Missile Crisis: Political, Military and Intelligence Aspects, (Macmillan Press Ltd, Basingstoke, 1999) Blight, G., The Shattered Crystal Ball: Fear and Learning in the Cuban Missile Crisis, (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, United States of America, 1992) Medvedev, R., Khrushchev, (Basil Blackwell, Oxford, 1982) Blight, G., and Welch, A., Intelligence and the Cuban Missile Crisis, (Frank Cass Publishers, London, 1998) Gaddis, L., Strategies of Containment, (Oxford University Press, New York, 2005) Keylor, R., The Twentieth Century World, (Oxford University Press, New York, 2001) Sorensen, C., Kennedy: Special Counsel to the late President, (Hodder and Stroughton Ltd, London, 1965) p327 Ibid., p331 Lebow, N., Domestic Politics and the Cuban Missile Crisis, Diplomatic History, XIV (4-1990) p471 Lebow, N., Domestic Politics and the Cuban Missile Crisis, Diplomatic History, XIV (4-1990) p476 Paterson, G., and Brophy, J,. [...]
[...] One of the main factors affecting Kennedy was the wider significance of the Cuban Missile Crisis on the Cold War as a whole. The successful resolution of the crisis reinforced European attitudes and particularly British attitudes towards security in the Cold War. The relaxation of tensions allowed the agreement of the Partial Test Ban treaty in 1963, in the negotiation of which Britain played a significant role. Also European fears over the Berlin issue were quelled with the increased diplomatic exchanges. Secretary of State Dean Rusk also noted that in addition to British advice and support to Washington, the lead that Britain had given to the rest of the European allies had undoubtedly much to do with the successful outcome of the crisis. [...]
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