Foreign Relations: Back to a Boil?

The Cuba crisis stayed at the top of the world's agenda. Restless and annoyed after days of Russian doubletalk and Castro bombast. President Kennedy held a long meeting with the National Security Council, called the Joint Chiefs of Staff into session. Messages sped back and forth between Washington and Moscow—but outside the innermost circles of the U.S. and Soviet governments, no one knew what John Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev were saying, and perhaps promising, to each other.

Had the nation given up the cold war initiative seized so recently? Was a Communist...

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