Berlin 1961: Kennedy, Khrushchev, and the Most Dangerous Place on Earth

Berlin 1961: Kennedy, Khrushchev, and the Most Dangerous Place on Earth

Frederick Kempe

In June 1961, Nikita Khrushchev referred to as Berlin "the so much harmful position on earth." He knew what he used to be conversing approximately.

Much has been written in regards to the Cuban Missile obstacle a yr later, however the Berlin drawback of 1961 was once extra decisive in shaping the chilly War-and extra perilous. It was once in that scorching summer time that the Berlin Wall was once built, which might divide the area for one more twenty-eight years. Then months later, and for the 1st time in background, American and Soviet scuffling with males and tanks stood arrayed opposed to every one different, merely yards aside. One mistake, one fearful soldier, one overzealous commander-and the tripwire will be sprung for a conflict that may possibly cross nuclear in a heartbeat.

On one aspect was once a tender, untested U.S. president nonetheless reeling from the Bay of Pigs catastrophe and a humiliating summit assembly that left him greedy for methods to reply. it can upload as much as be one of many worst first-year overseas coverage performances of any smooth president. at the different aspect, a Soviet ultimate hemmed in by way of the chinese language, East Germans, and hardliners in his personal govt. With an all-important social gathering Congress coming near near, he knew Berlin intended the adaptation not just for the Kremlin's carry on its empire-but for his personal carry at the Kremlin.

Neither guy fairly understood the opposite, either attempted cynically to control occasions. And so, week via week, they crept towards the brink.

Based on a wealth of latest records and interviews, jam-packed with fresh-sometimes startling-insights, written with immediacy and drama, Berlin 1961 is a rare examine key occasions of the 20th century, with strong functions to those early years of the twenty-first.

Includes photos

Show sample text content

Download sample