In 1962 the US and the Soviet Union came to the brink of nuclear war during the Cuban Missile Crisis – possibly the closest the world has ever come to such a war. On this episode I welcome back Martin Darlington of History by Hollywood to discuss the Cuban Missile Crisis and the film Thirteen Days, which depicts the Kennedy administration’s side of that crisis. We talk about the real history behind the story, how US covert operations at the Bay of Pigs and on into Operation Mongoose and Operation Northwoods had provoked the missile crisis and the Castro-Soviet alliance. We also discuss the lesser-known story of Vasily Arkhipov, a Soviet submarine commander who refused to launch his nuclear torpedoes in the midst of the crisis and thus averted a nuclear war. In this in-depth conversation we also get onto tangents about the CIA’s attempts to kill Castro, United Fruit and the robot slave Martin uses to clean up after his cats, as well as why the DOD rejected Thirteen Days, and whether their objections to the script were reasonable or grossly historically inaccurate.
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