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Don’t Miss The Soviet Cuban Missile Crisis Book Launch Today!

October 17, 2012

Join senior Archive fellow Svetlana Savranskaya today for a discussion of The Soviet Cuban Missile Crisis: Castro, Mikoyan, Kennedy, Khrushchev, and the Missiles of November. The book, commissioned by Sergo Mikoyan, Anastas Mikoyan’s late son and personal secretary during the negotiations, paints a picture of the events that underscores just how little we really knew about our closest brush with nuclear Armageddon.

Anastas Mikoyan in Cuba, February 1960. Photo courtesy of Sergo Mikoyan.

In the book explosive details, like the personal tragedy that befell the USSR’s chief negotiator at the outset of the crisis, are revealed for the first time to an English-speaking audience. Anastas Mikoyan, the USSR’s second in command, arrived in Havana to negotiate with the frantic Americans and a volatile Fidel Castro the very day Anastas’ wife of over 40 years died. Mikoyan’s perseverance and grit is just one of the specifics that, combined with revelations of the plan to leave over 100 tactical nuclear weapons in Cuba and Fidel Castro’s unpredictable behavior, rewrite the traditional history of the 13 day Soviet-American crisis as a month-long event, with bitter negotiations between the Cubans and Soviets continuing well into November.

No wonder Foreign Policy Magazine has already paid such close attention to the book, or that it’s received praise from formidable Cold War scholars like William Taubman. To learn more for yourself, join Dr. Savranskaya, as well co-panelist Professor Philip Brenner and panel chair Professor James G. Hershberg, for the event at the Wilson Center’s 5th floor at 3:30. If you are unable to make it in person, the discussion will also be hosted via Webcast.

The book is available for purchase from Stanford University Press, and was co-published by the Wilson Center Press as part of the CWIHP book series.

“What’s left to say about the Cuban missile crisis fifty years after it occurred? Plenty, it turns – out, in this remarkably revealing book by the son of Nikita Khrushchev’s main Kremlin ally and chief negotiator with Washington and Havana. Not only about why Khrushchev put the missiles in and then took them out, but especially about Fidel Castro’s fierce resistance to the deal that may have averted nuclear war.

- William Taubman, Amherst College; Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Khrushchev: The Man and His Era.

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