It was 50 years ago today that a dangerous game of brinkmanship famously known as the Cuban Missile Crisis began between the United States and the Soviet Union, an event that is now considered one of the the closest points during the history of the Cold War that the world came to outright nuclear conflict.
An interesting article in today’s Washington Post questions whether or not the crisis should instead be called “The Cuban Missile Misunderstanding” considering the cultural misreadings by both the administration of President John F. Kennedy and Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev. The article shines some light on the important lessons learned from the crisis and how future presidents have acted in times of conflict.
Journalist Michael Dobbs of the Washington Post expanded on this idea in the following Commonwealth Club video. Using the Cuban Missile Crisis as context, Dobbs explained what the view is like from within the Oval Office and discussed how crisis management has evolved in situations such as dealing with a possible nuclear threat from Iran.