Illustration by Brad Holland
A new president, old animosities,
and uncertain alliances; welcome to the New Cold War
On Oct. 15, 1962, an American spy plane took photographs of Soviet missiles being installed in Cuba. The missiles were capable of delivering nuclear warheads to both American and Canadian targets. For a week, President Kennedy discussed America’s options with his advisors, deciding finally on a naval blockade as opposed to air strikes against the missile sites. On Oct. 22, he went on television and told the American public of the situation, promising further action if the missiles weren’t dismantled.
All NATO leaders, including Canadian Prime Minister John Diefenbaker, were told of Kennedy’s decision before the public broadcast. Diefenbaker was miffed that h...