UNITED STATES INVOLVEMENT
In October 1962, an American U-2 spy plane secretly photographed nuclear missile sites being built by the Soviet Union on the island of Cuba. President Kennedy did not want the Soviet Union and Cuba to know that he had discovered the missiles.
In the 1950’s Cuba was lead by a right-wing dictator called Fulgencio Batista. He dealt with opponents with extreme harshness and while a few prospered under his regime, many Cubans were very poor.
Soviet Union involvement
Alexander Alexeev was the Soviet ambassador to Cuba from 1962 to 1968. During the missile crisis Alexeev had privileged access to Castro as his chief Soviet confidant, which allowed Alexeev to relay information back to the Kremlin about Castro’s views and reactions as events unfolded.
If the Cuban Missile Crisis was the most dangerous passage of the Cold War, the most dangerous moment of the Cuban Missile Crisis was the evening of Saturday, 27 October 1962, when the resolution of the crisis—war or peace—appeared to hang in the balance.