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Averting 'the final failure' : John F. Kennedy and the secret Cuban Missile Crisis meetings

Author: Sheldon M Stern
Publisher: Stanford, Calif. : Stanford University Press, 2003.
Series: Stanford nuclear age series.
Edition/Format:   Book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
"The Cuban missile crisis was the most dangerous confrontation of the Cold War and the most perilous moment in human history. Sheldon M. Stern, longtime historian at the John F. Kennedy Library, here presents a comprehensive narrative account of the secret ExComm meetings, making the inside story of the missile crisis completely understandable to general readers for the first time. The author's narrative version of  Read more...
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Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Stern, Sheldon M.
Averting 'the final failure'
Stanford, Calif. : Stanford University Press, 2003
(OCoLC)606997624
Named Person: John F Kennedy; John F Kennedy; John F Kennedy; John Fitzgerald Kennedy; Kennedy, John Fitzgerald <1917-1963>
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Sheldon M Stern
ISBN: 0804748462 9780804748469
OCLC Number: 52086469
Description: xxx, 459 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
Contents: Preface: The JFK Cuban Missile Crisis tapes --
Listening to the JFK Tapes --
Origins of the JFK Tapes --
Opening the JFK Tapes --
The Historical Value of the JFK Tapes --
Introduction: the Making of the Cuban Missile Crisis --
The Cold War: JFK's Crucible --
Nuclear Confrontation in Cuba --
The Kennedy Paradox --
Key Members of the Executive Committee of the National Security Council --
The Secret Meetings of the Executive Committee of the National Security Council --
Epilogue: The November Post-Crisis --
Conclusion: Listening and Learning: Insights from the JFK ExComm Tapes.
Series Title: Stanford nuclear age series.
Responsibility: Sheldon M. Stern.
More information:

Abstract:

"The Cuban missile crisis was the most dangerous confrontation of the Cold War and the most perilous moment in human history. Sheldon M. Stern, longtime historian at the John F. Kennedy Library, here presents a comprehensive narrative account of the secret ExComm meetings, making the inside story of the missile crisis completely understandable to general readers for the first time. The author's narrative version of these discussions is entirely new; it provides readers with a running commentary on the issues and options discussed and enables them, as never before, to follow specific themes and the role of individual participants. The narrative highlights key moments of stress, doubt, decision, and resolution - and even humor - and makes the meetings comprehensible both to readers who lived through the crisis and to those too young to remember the Cold War." "Stern argues that President Kennedy and his administration bore some of the responsibility for the crisis because of covert operations in Cuba, including efforts to kill Fidel Castro. Yet he demonstrates that JFK, though a seasoned Cold Warrior in public, was deeply suspicious of military solutions to political problems and appalled by the prospects of nuclear war. The President consistently steered policy makers away from an apocalyptic nuclear conflict, measuring each move and countermove with an eye toward averting what he called, with stark eloquence, "the final failure."" "Previously published transcripts of the secret ExComm meetings are often dense and impenetrable for everyone but the specialist. They also reflect the flaws in the tapes themselves, such as rambling, repetitive exchanges, overlapping conversations, and frustrating background noises. This narrative, on the contrary, concentrates on the essentials and eliminates these peripherals. As Robert Dallek notes in his Foreword, Stern's work "will become the starting point for all future work on President Kennedy's response to the Soviet challenge in Cuba.""--Jacket.

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