Over this past week I’ve been reading the Wikipedia entry regarding the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. I tried to do so with as open a mind as possible, not prejudging, not presuming to know the event was fake.
Since I lived through it and most readers did not, I will go through the events and timeline. Remember, this is official history. More about what really happened later.
- October 15, 1962: A U-2 Surveillance plane reveals SS-4 nuclear missiles in Cuba.
- Oct 16: JFK convenes Executive Committee (ExCom) to discuss option’s.
- Oct 18: JFK warns Soviet Foreign Minister Andrie Gromyko that the US will not tolerate the missiles.
- Oct 21: JFK decides on a naval blockade of Cuba.
- Oct 22: JFK on TV announces presence of missiles and blockade.
- Oct 23: U-2 surveillance reveals that Soviet missiles are ready for launch.
- Oct 24: Soviet ships approach the blockade line, and stop. Defense Secretary Robert McNamara says they are shadowed by Soviet submarines.
- US Ambassador Adlai Stevenson confronts Soviets at the UN, but they refuse to answer.
- Oct 26: Nikita Khrushchev offers, in letter to JFK, to remove missiles in exchange for a US guarantee not to invade Cuba. US agrees that missiles in Turkey are on the table. Castro urges Khrushchev to strike first with nukes if US invades Cuba.
- Oct 27: U2 spy plane accidentally flies into Russia. U2 shot down in Cuba, pilot killed.
- Oct 28: Crisis ends. Khrushchev announces missiles will be removed.
Most Americans were in a state of fear during this time, especially us school kids. I was twelve years old during this event. As I remember, we were kept abreast during school time by use of messengers sent to the class rooms to bring us up to speed on the unfolding events. I distinctly remember Susan Hennessy, a teacher’s pet, peddling these announcements. When it ended, on a Sunday, we could breathe again. The crisis had lasted thirteen days. That’s a long time to keep kids in fear. (Susan would, in a little over a year, be the one to announce to our class that Kennedy had been shot.)
The background for this event is as important as the event itself. The Bay of Pigs invasion took place on April 17, 1961. As Miles Mathis pointed out in his paper on Fidel Castro,
Each year Cuba spends on total military about 1/10th what we spend on Guantanamo Bay alone. The total military budget of the US is about 10,000 times that of Cuba—and that doesn’t even include Intelligence and black ops, which may double that number.
You may wish to re-think the Bay of Pigs story with that in mind. If Cuba was able to repel an invading force in 1961, why isn’t it able to drive this US base off the island? We are told Cuba has wanted the base to close since 1959, but we just ignore them. You may also want to ask yourself what all these soldiers at Guantanamo were doing while the invading force was allegedly being repelled in1961. We are told the US invaders included only 1,400 paramilitaries. We are told that training of these troops was in Florida, Alabama and Puerto Rico. Really? Why not train them at the US base on the island of Cuba? Why not use the thousands of US soldiers already camped on the island? It is beyond belief, really.
Go read the Bay of Pigs Invasion page at Wikipedia. The US Naval Base on the island is not mentioned once. This is all you need to understand that the entire event was a hoax.
The Mathis paper is focused on Fidel Castro, and he concludes that the man was an American agent (and gay and Jewish?). I see the Bay of Pigs as a staged revolution, the purpose of which was to convince the Cuban people that Castro was the real deal. That is why it was designed to fail.
Nonetheless, the Bay of Pigs plays a huge role in the Cuban Missile Crisis. A number of factors were at play, but a leading one was that Castro was supposedly worried about another American invasion. The Soviets decided on the missile gambit hoping for any or all of three positive outcomes, removal of American missiles aimed at the USSR from Turkey and Italy, and repatriation of West Berlin, deep in Soviet territory, as a Soviet-run city, and a guarantee from the US not to ever invade Cuba again.
If the Bay of Pigs invasion was a hoax, as I suspect it was, the Soviets would have known, Castro would have known, and the Pentagon would have known. This leads me to suspect that, given that everyone knew everything, that the entire Cuban Missile Crisis was a hoax. By “hoax” I mean no showdown, no Soviet vessels turning around, no blockade, no missiles. It was all a TV show.
The Wikipedia narrative is well written and easy to follow. One paragraph on page 15 under the heading “US alert level raised” jumped out at me. It is as follows:
[US Air Force General] David A. Burchinal recalled that, by contrast:
the Russians were so thoroughly stood down, and we knew it. They didn’t make any move. They did not increase their alert; they did not increase any flights, or their air defense posture. They didn’t do a thing, they froze in place. We were never further from nuclear war than at the time of Cuba, never further.
This makes me wonder if we in the United States were seeing a one-sided propaganda operation, done with some Soviet cooperation, but mostly just an American event shown to Americans on TV in order to frighten us.
The photo above was supposedly taken by a U2 flyover, and was shown to President Kennedy on October 16. What are we to make of it? It is only what they say it is, as I can make nothing of it, nor do I imagine that Kennedy could (more about him later). He must have said, if he said anything at all, “If you say so.” The photo, we are told, was analyzed by the CIA’s National Photographic interpretation Center (NPIC). It has “just trust us on this” written all over it.
In fact, and this was my strongest impression on completion of reading, everything written in this Wikipedia entry is trust-based. Take a look, for example, at the photo on the left. It is said to be one of a hundred missiles in Italy or Turkey aimed at Moscow. It could be anything, and it could be anywhere. It could be an empty tin can in Bakersfield, California. Others here have commented that “guided” missiles that lack wings are not guidable.
The photo above is said to be “A US Navy P-2H Neptune of VP-18 flying over a Soviet cargo ship with crated Il-28s on deck during the Cuban Crisis.” The Soviets were said to be sneaking the missiles into Cuba. (As I read it, the Il-28 is an aircraft that delivers smaller air-to-surface missiles, but this technology is not my skill.) What I see here, in spite of the words to the contrary above, are cranes plainly evident, some tubular objects and perhaps some crates.I imagine that missiles carrying a nuclear payload several hundred miles to be much larger than this, but again, not my skill.
I see no markings on the vessel either, so I cannot even be certain it is Soviet. The plane in the foreground is Navy, that much is certain. The photo must have been taken from another aircraft, part of the wing visible. There is some writing on the very front of the ship, shown to the left here. I enlarged that as much as possible on my monitor here, and cannot make it out. It could indeed be Cyrillic, but it is hard to say. In other words, I see no easy evidence that this is a Soviet vessel carrying a nuclear payload.
The Wikipedia article is like this throughout. Photos used to enhance the narrative are all of the “just trust us” variety.
There were four major players in this event, at least as seen on American TV. They were Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev, President John F. Kennedy, Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, and Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara. If I were to suggest to the average American then or now that Khrushchev was but a sock puppet controlled by more powerful people behind him, there would be no problem. Americans have no problem believing that governments of other countries are fake. If I were to suggest that the same applied to the Kennedy’s and McNamara, it would be a no-sale. Americans are inculcated from birth with the legitimacy of our system of government, and the reality of elections and their results.
Below is a collage of photos taken from the Wikipedia article on the crisis:
I always ask myself with photos where the photographer was standing, and how he got there. In this case, he is given access to meetings held at a very high level. The photos are posed. The players are told how to look. Notice in the bottom photo how General LeMay and the pilots are slumped forward, in submissive posture. Kennedy is sitting erect, a man in charge. This too is posed, everyone set up for the photo and told how to behave.
The idea is to foster the illusion that the people we elect are in charge. We just witnessed a major reveal of power in the coronavirus hoax. Almost every government on the planet (except Tanzania) took a knee and stepped aside to let medical officials take over. They shut down the world economy, locked people down and put many in quarantine, and issued goofy regulations regarding face masks and distancing. This told me something I knew, but not to this extent – that democratic governance is, everywhere, an illusion.
So too was it an illusion in 1962. The Kennedy’s were no more in charge then than Tweeter Trump is now. They were and are actors.
So what was the real purpose of the Cuban Missile Crisis? I don’t know, of course, but can make a reasonable guess. Television was still in its infancy, perhaps experimental stage. The crisis was what current Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called the coronavirus hoax, a “live exercise.” Everyone in government was ordered to treat all events as real. As one moved down the chain of command, there would be less knowledge that it was a hoax. As one moved up, there would be more. General Curtis LeMay would know, as would Robert McNamera, and the shadowy figures behind them that hold real power. The Kennedy brothers would know, and were told to act as if they were in charge.
It was an experiment to see how much of our “reality” could be controlled by TV screens. There were no missiles, no confrontations at sea, no Soviet vessels either penetrating or turning back at a blockade that did not exist. Was it possible to put the majority of the American public in a state of fear, and hold them there? For how long? (They stopped after two weeks, so I don’t know how long they could have carried on.)
Keep in mind that other aspects of propaganda would be introduced later to make Americans feel like they are participants in live events. These are things like yellow ribbons, Support the Troops buttons and bumper stickers, and the current regime of face masks and distancing. Americans have now been kept in state of fear for nearly three months. We’ve come a long way, baby.
Hoaxes are never revealed, that is, we never get to a point where “now it can be told.” I first heard about this ‘revelation’ from Noam Chomsky, who repeated it as gospel.
Arguably, the most dangerous moment in the crisis was not recognised until the Cuban Missile Crisis Havana conference, in October 2002. Attended by many of the veterans of the crisis, they all learned that on October 27, 1962, USS Beale had tracked and dropped signalling depth charges (the size of hand grenades) on B-59, a Soviet Project 641 (NATO designation Foxtrot) submarine. Unknown to the US, it was armed with a 15-kiloton nuclear torpedo. Running out of air, the Soviet submarine was surrounded by American warships and desperately needed to surface. An argument broke out among three officers aboard B-59, including submarine captain Valentin Savitsky, political officer Ivan Semonovich Maslennikov, and Deputy brigade commander Captain 2nd rank (US Navy Commander rank equivalent) Vasily Arkhipov. An exhausted Savitsky became furious and ordered that the nuclear torpedo on board be made combat ready. Accounts differ about whether Arkhipov convinced Savitsky not to make the attack or whether Savitsky himself finally concluded that the only reasonable choice left open to him was to come to the surface.:303, 317 During the conference, McNamara stated that nuclear war had come much closer than people had thought. Thomas Blanton, director of the National Security Archive, said, “A guy called Vasili Arkhipov saved the world.”
That was 2002, forty years after, and they were still doing a hard sell. But at times they slip up. I grew up in Billings, Montana, and occasionally my family would take us to Belt, a small town near Great Falls, to visit relatives. On those trips the missile silos were always pointed out to me. I remember seeing things like this, not far off the highway.
In the 1990s we were told that the missiles were secretly removed from the silos, and the press was allowed in to photograph some of them along with the technology around them. What they found was primitive, Minuteman missiles said to be guided by floppy disks, the very large kind that could hold perhaps a dozen printed pages of text. No way was the supposed missile going to be guided anywhere by that technology.
It was a hoax. Of course it was. The Soviets knew as much, perhaps ran a similar scam on their own people. The purpose of the Minuteman missiles was to convince Americans that the threat of nuclear war was real. It was all about state of fear.
It’s always about state of fear. The Cuban Missile Crisis was a fear exercise, as is the coronavirus hoax. It seems to be the only way they know how to govern.