The Cuban Missile Crisis was mainly started by two countries in 1962, one of them the USSR (Russia) and the other being the USA. A Soviet leader, Nikita Khrushchev, was worried about the fact that the US had nuclear missiles only 150 miles away in Turkey, short work for a missile. Khrushchev also knew that no matter what Kennedy, President at the time, said while in his campaign, the Americans had more missiles than the Soviets which is why the USSR felt endangered. This is why he sent nuclear missiles to Cuba as it was only 90 miles away from the coast of America. Cuba accepted and so at the end of chapter 40 you may find that Bobby's parents seem worried and anxious about the missiles as they think that WW3 might occur. The Cold War began not too long after WW2 ended in 1945. It was a long period of tension between the democracies of the Western World and the communist countries of Eastern Europe. The west was led by the United States and Eastern Europe was led by the Soviet Union. These two countries became known as superpowers. Although the two superpowers never officially declared war on each other, they fought indirectly in proxy wars, the arms race, and the space race. Proxy War - These were wars fought between other countries, but with each side getting support from a different superpower. Arms Race and Space Race - The United States and the Soviet Union also tried to fight the Cold War by demonstrating their power and technology. One example of this was the Arms Race where each side tried to have the best weapons and the most nuclear bombs. The idea was that a large stockpile of weapons would deter the other side from ever attacking. Another example was the Space Race, where each side tried to show that it had the better scientists and technology by accomplishing certain space missions first. Here are the last three paragraphs of "The Abyss of Destruction" speech that President Kennedy made.
"My fellow citizens: let no one doubt that this is a difficult and dangerous effort on which we have set out. No one can see precisely what course it will take or what costs or casualties will be incurred. Many months of sacrifice and self-discipline lie ahead - months in which our patience will be tested-months in which many threats and denunciations will keep us aware of our dangers. But the greatest danger of all would be to do nothing.
The path we have chosen for the present is full of hazards, as all paths are, but it is the one most consistent with our character and courage as a nation and our commitments around the world. The cost of freedom is always high and Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender or submission.
Our goal is not the victory of might,