Os 50 Anos da Crise dos Mísseis de Cuba

CAMBRIDGE – Este mês assinala o 50º aniversário da Crise dos Mísseis de Cuba – esses 13 dias de Outubro de 1962 em que o mundo esteve provavelmente mais perto que nunca de uma guerra nuclear. O Presidente John F. Kennedy avisara publicamente a União Soviética para não instalar mísseis ofensivos em Cuba. Mas o líder Soviético Nikita Khrushchev decidiu ultrapassar sub-repticiamente a linha vermelha de Kennedy e confrontar os Americanos com um fait accompli (em francês no original – NdT). Quando um avião de vigilância Americano descobriu os mísseis, a crise eclodiu.

Alguns dos conselheiros de Kennedy encorajaram um ataque aéreo e uma invasão para destruir os mísseis. Kennedy mobilizou tropas, mas também ganhou tempo anunciando um bloqueio naval a Cuba. A crise terminou quando navios Soviéticos que transportavam mísseis adicionais voltaram para trás, e Khrushchev concordou em remover os mísseis existentes na ilha. Como o então Secretário de Estado dos EUA Dean Rusk afirmou: “Fitávamo-nos nos olhos, e penso que o outro tipo pestanejou.”

À primeira vista, este foi um desfecho racional e previsível. Os Estados Unidos tinham uma vantagem de 17 para 1 em armamento nuclear. Os Soviéticos foram simplesmente ultrapassados pelo poder de fogo.

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