Cuban Missile Crisis: Death, civil unrest and political purges that followed


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President Kennedy was assassinated on November 22, 1963, just under a year after the Cuban Missile Crisis ended. He had been on a political trip to Dallas, Texas, in a bid to soothe tensions between Democratic Party rivals Ralph Yarborough and Don Yarborough, both liberals, and conservative John Connally.While travelling in a presidential motorcade in downtown Dallas, Kennedy was shot once in the back, with reports showing the bullet exited via the President’s throat, and once in the head. Just 30 minutes later he was pronounced dead at Parkland Hospital, and Lee Harvey Oswald was convicted of murder.The assassin was himself shot and killed just two days after Kennedy. He was known to be a Cuba supporter, and had previously paid to have flyers made titled “Hands Off Cuba” that he passed out on the streets of New Orleans. While handing out these flyers, he was arrested for disturbing the peace after being involved in a fight with some anti-Castro Cubans. Elsewhere, other figures involved in the crisis battled their own issues. Khrushchev saw his spell as leader come to a dramatic end after he was ousted from his post after major struggles within his government. His political opponents used his actions during the Cuban Missile Crisis against him, and by October 1964 he was ushered out of office amid violent protests.After learning of the coup, he told his deputy: “I’m old and tired. Let them cope by themselves. I’ve done the main thing. Could anyone have dreamed of telling Stalin that he didn’t suit us anymore and suggesting he retire? Not even a wet spot would have remained where we had been standing. Now everything is different. The fear is gone, and we can talk as equals. That’s my contribution. I won’t put up a fight.”He didn’t suffer the same fate as some of his predecessors and was in fact pensioned off with an apartment in Moscow. His memoirs would eventually be smuggled to the West and published in 1970. A year later, he died of a heart attack.


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