50 Jahre Kubakrise

CAMBRIDGE, MASS.: In diesem Monat jährt sich die Kubakrise – jene 13 Tage im Oktober 1962, an denen die Welt einem Atomkrieg vermutlich näher war als je zuvor oder danach – zum 50. Mal. US-Präsident John F. Kennedy hatte die Sowjetunion damals öffentlich davor gewarnt, Angriffsraketen auf Kuba zu stationieren. Doch der sowjetische Partei- und Regierungschef Nikita Chruschtschow entschied sich, Kennedys rote Linie heimlich zu überschreiten und die Amerikaner vor vollendete Tatsachen zu stellen. Zum Ausbruch der Krise kam es, als ein amerikanisches Überwachungsflugzeug die Raketen entdeckte.

Einige von Kennedys Beratern drängten auf einen Luftschlag und einen Einmarsch in Kuba, um die Raketen zu zerstören. Kennedy machte mobil, aber er kaufte zugleich Zeit, indem er eine Seeblockade gegen Kuba verhängte. Die Krise klang ab, als die sowjetischen Schiffe mit zusätzlichen Raketen an Bord abdrehten und Chruschtschow sich bereit erklärte, die bestehenden Raketen von der Insel abzuziehen. Der damalige US-Außenminister Dean Rusk beschrieb das Geschehen so: „Wir standen uns damals Auge in Auge gegenüber, und ich glaube, die andere Seite zuckte einfach zuerst.“

Auf den ersten Blick war dies ein rationales, vorhersehbares Ergebnis. Die USA hatten 17 Mal so viele Atomwaffen. Die Sowjets waren waffentechnisch einfach unterlegen.

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