Address During the Cuban Missile Crisis

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Address During the Cuban Missile Crisis

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About Historic Speech

Accession Number: WH-142-001

Digital Identifier: JFKWHA-142-001

Title: Radio and television address to the American people on the Soviet arms build-up in Cuba, 22 October 1962

Date(s) of Materials: 22 October 1962

Description: Audio recording of President John F. Kennedy’s radio and television address to the nation regarding the former Soviet Union’s military presence in Cuba. In his speech President Kennedy reports the establishment of offensive missile sites presumably intended to launch a nuclear offensive against Western nations. The President characterizes the transformation of Cuba into an important strategic base as an explicit threat to American security, and explains seven components to his proposed course of action: quarantine all offensive military equipment under shipment to Cuba, increase the degree of surveillance, regard a possible attack launched from Cuba as a Soviet attack, reinforce the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, call for a meeting of the Organ of Consultation, call for an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council, and demand that Premier Nikita Khrushchev cease his current course of action. In his speech the President famously states, “Our goal is not the victory of might, but the vindication of right- not peace at the expense of freedom, but both peace and freedom, here in this Hemisphere, and, we hope, around the world.”

Copyright Status: Public Domain

Physical Description: 1 audio tape/reel (18 minutes)

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