All Weekend, Every Weekend. On C-SPAN3.

50th Anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis

Political Cartoon, 1962

Political Cartoon, 1962

Boston, MA
Monday, December 24, 2012

Fifty years to the day that American U-2 planes photographed startling evidence of Soviet missile bases in Cuba, American History TV was live from the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum in Boston. A gathering of historians, scholars, filmmakers and journalists came together for a 50th anniversary retrospective of the historic 13 days that came to be known as the Cuban Missile Crisis. Participants included Sergei Khrushchev, the son of Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev—President Kennedy’s counterpart in a military and political confrontation that tested the young Kennedy administration and threatened to lead to nuclear war.

Our coverage included audio recordings of White House meetings during the crisis, Universal Newsreels from the time, and an Oval Office speech by President Kennedy delivered on October 22, 1962.

Here’s some of what you'll find in this program:

  • ARCHIVAL FOOTAGE: President Kennedy Oval Office Address from October 22, 1962
  • Panel: History of the Cuban Missile Crisis: What We Know and When We Learned It - Panelists include Peter Kornbluh, Director of the National Security Archive's Cuba Documentation Project and author, The Bay of Pigs Declassified: The Secret CIA Report on the Invasion of Cuba and The Bay of Pigs Re-examined and Svetlana Savranskaya, Russian Affairs Specialist and editor, The Soviet Cuban Missile Crisis: Castro, Mikoyan, Kennedy, Khruschev, and the Missiles of November
  • ARCHIVAL FOOTAGE and AUDIO: Universal Newsreels and audio recordings of White House meetings from 1962
  • Remarks from Sergei Khrushchev, son of Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev
  • Panel: Kennedy, Khrushchev and Castro - Panelists include Tim Naftali, former director of the Richard Nixon Library and author, One Hell of a Gamble:  Khrushchev, Castro, and Kennedy and Brian Latell, former CIA Intelligence Officer and author, Castro's Secrets: The CIA and Cuba's Intelligence Machine and After Fidel: Raul Castro and the Future of the Revolution
  • ARCHIVAL FOOTAGE and AUDIO: Universal Newsreels and audio recordings of White House meetings from 1962
  • Remarks: The Nuclear Test Ban Treaty - David Coleman, Chair, Miller Center’s Presidential Recordings Program and author, The Fourteenth Day: JFK and the Aftermath of the Cuban Missile Crisis
  • Panel: The Nuclear Threat 50 Years After Cuba - Panelists include Nicholas Burns,  professor at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and former U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs

Updated: Saturday, December 8, 2012 at 12:37pm (ET)

Related Events

Cuban Missile Crisis "On The Brink"
Saturday, October 23, 2010     

It has been forty-eight years since the United States and Soviet Union showdown over Soviet nuclear missiles in Cuba. The crisis ended when Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev backed down and announced the removal of the missiles. Former presidential adviser and special counsel, Ted Sorensen and former Defense Secretary Robert McNamara took part in a 2002 discussion on those thirteen days in October 1962.

The CIA and the Cuban Missile Crisis - 1992 Archival Film from the CIA
Saturday, October 22, 2011     

History Professor James Hershberg lectures on the Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962.

The CIA and the Cuban Missile Crisis
Sunday, October 23, 2011     

The Cuban Missile Crisis is the subject of this ten minute Universal Newsreel from October 1962.
 
On October 22nd, 1962 President John F. Kennedy announced the United States had discovered Soviet missile bases in Cuba.

The Civil War: Fall of Atlanta
Today     

Author Stephen Davis discusses the Fall of Atlanta. He highlights the role of the four commanders who had the greatest impact on the Atlanta campaign: Confederates John Bell Hood and Joseph E. Johnston, and Union leaders William Tecumseh Sherman and George Thomas. Atlanta fell to Union forces on September 2, 1864, bringing General Sherman’s four-month-long campaign to a close. The Lovett School, Atlanta History Center & Jack & Anne Glenn Character Education Speakers Foundation co-hosted this event.

U.S. Diplomacy Center Groundbreaking Ceremony
Today     

Secretary of State John Kerry and former Secretaries of State Kissinger, Baker, Powell, Albright and Clinton deliver remarks at the groundbreaking ceremony for the U.S. Diplomacy Center. The museum will be designed to demonstrate the importance of diplomacy throughout American history.

History Bookshelf: The Life of Harriet Tubman
Today     

Author Catherine Clinton discusses Harriet Tubman’s life and work in this event from 2004. In "Harriet Tubman: The Road to Freedom," Clinton writes about Tubman's escape from slavery and details her time as a scout, a spy and a nurse for the Union Army.

JFK Assassination: Warren Commission Findings
Today     

A week after John F. Kennedy's murder in Dallas on November 22nd, 1963, Lyndon Johnson established the President’s Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy - better known as the Warren Commission for its chairman, Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren. The commission issued its report in September 1964, concluding Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone when he killed President Kennedy, and that Jack Ruby acted alone when he killed Oswald. In this forum from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, a half dozen former Warren Commission staff members discuss their investigation.

The Presidency: Ronald Reagan's Legacy
Sunday     

Former President Ronald Reagan died at 93 in June 2004. To commemorate the 10th anniversary, the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Library hosted a discussion about the 40th president’s legacy. Panelists included Reagan biographer Lou Cannon and Reagan speech writer Peggy Noonan.   

Reel America: "Oil Across Arabia" - 1950
Sunday     

This Bechtel Corporation film documents the 1947 to 1950 development of a Saudi Arabian oil pipeline constructed by American companies in cooperation with Saudi Arabia.  The 1,000 mile pipeline by-passed the need for a 3,000 mile oil tanker journey around Saudio Arabia to the Suez Canal. This pipeline ceased all operations in 1990.

Star-Spangled Banner 200th Anniversary
Sunday     

In this program, we take you to Fort McHenry in Baltimore for a ceremony commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Star-Spangled Banner. The event includes remarks by former Secretary of State Colin Powell. Also, a flag-raising at the exact time 200 years ago that Francis Scott Key saw a large American flag hoisted above the fort, signaling the garrison had survived an all-night bombardment by the British Navy. That moment on September 14, 1814, inspired Key to compose what would later become our National Anthem, and the American victory became a turning point in the War of 1812. 

Share This Event Via Social Media

Photo Gallery

In Depth: Joan Biskupic