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Reflections on the Cuban Missile Crisis in the Context of Strategic Stability

This is an aerial reconnaissance photo of the San Cristobal medium range ballistic missile site No. 3 in Cuba during the Cuban missile crisis. The shows the site at its maximum readiness on October 27, 1962, according to the U.S Department of Defense.
AP Photo/U.S. Defense Department

Reflections on the Cuban Missile Crisis in the Context of Strategic Stability

Discussion Paper 2012-12, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

September 2012 (Working Draft)

Author: Andrei A. Kokoshin

 

ABSTRACT

In this discussion paper Andrei Kokoshin, member of the Russian Academy of Sciences and sixth secretary of the Russian Security Council, offers a concise discussion of the essence of the most dangerous nuclear crisis in the history of humankind.

Unlike other Russian publications on this topic, this paper explores the Cuban missile crisis in the context of the evolution of strategic stability in relations between Russia and the United States from the 1960s to the present. Among other things, the author pays attention to lessons that can be drawn from the Cuban crisis for the effective management of international crises. The author discloses a number of little-known but important details about the behavior of the Soviet Union and the United States, including specific details that he learned through personal communication with a number of individuals who were actively involved in resolving the crisis.

This paper is intended for use by institutions of higher education, as well as for anyone interested in the political-military and military-strategic aspects of international politics, and in effective crisis management.

 

For more information about this publication please contact the Belfer Center Communications Office at 617-495-9858.

For Academic Citation:

Kokoshin, Andrei A. "Reflections on the Cuban Missile Crisis in the Context of Strategic Stability." Discussion Paper 2012-12, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, September 2012 (Working Draft).

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