published Saturday, April 23rd, 2011

A war we narrowly avoided

News that an “unsteady” 84-year-old Fidel Castro appeared at a Communist Party meeting in Havana this week brought to mind tense days in 1962, when the United States came close to war with Cuba — and with the Soviet Union!

Some were surprised when Castro’s 1959 revolution turned out to be a Communist takeover. Then in 1962, Soviet ships delivered to Cuba nuclear missiles that could hit the United States. President John F. Kennedy responded with a U.S. blockade of Cuba. There was a threat of war — until the Soviets threw in the towel, removed their missiles and delivered no more.

Memories of that crisis came this week as elderly Fidel Castro and his brother Raul received undeserved applause at the Communist Party meeting.

We regret that the Castros still have dictatorial control in Cuba. But we rejoice that they cannot threaten free nations with nuclear weapons.

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