13 Days: president Kennedy and also the Cuban Missile dilemm

Students investigate outcomes that the Cuban Missile dilemm by using primary documents and role-playing chairman Kennedy’s nationwide security team.

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1. Review an excerpt native the Killing Kennedy script.

Assign students come play the different roles in the Cuban Missile dilemm Scene choice from the Killing Kennedy script. Have actually students act the end the scene. Prior to reading, questioning the staying students to listen to identify what problem President Kennedy deals with in this scene. After, ask:  What trouble did president Kennedy face in this clip? Explain to students the this problem has pertained to be recognized as the Cuban Missile Crisis. It occurred in 1962. For thirteen days, the people teetered on the brink of nuclear war. Ask: Why go missiles in Cuba posture a threat to the united States?


2. Review Kennedy’s policy alternatives in the confront of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Explain to students the they will certainly be acting as Kennedy’s advisers during this thirteen-day period. They will should research and analyze the papers that Kennedy’s real advisers had easily accessible to them, and then existing their result to the chairman (you).

Tell students the President Kennedy had actually several alternatives in responding come the danger posed by the location of missiles top top Cuban soil. Ask college student what alternatives they think Kennedy had. List student responses on poster paper or on a whiteboard. Usage the conversation to note students to include every one of the options detailed below. You may wish to task the list for students to read. 

Do nothing: American vulnerability to Soviet missiles was no new. Newly inserted missiles in Cuba made tiny strategic distinction in the army balance of power.Diplomacy: usage diplomatic push to acquire the Soviet Union to eliminate the missiles.Warning: Send a blog post to Castro come warn that of the grave hazard he, and also Cuba, to be facing.Blockade: usage the U.S. Navy to block any type of missiles from getting here in Cuba.Air strike: use the U.S. Air pressure to strike all known missile sites.Invasion: beginning a full force invasion of Cuba and also overthrow the Castro. 


3. Students research Kennedy’s policy choices using primary resources and also role-playing as EXCOMM.  

Explain come students that after the failure of just of Pigs invasion, Kennedy urged dissent among his advisers. If an idea was bad, Kennedy wanted his advisers to tell him; the did not desire “yes men” to aid him make decisions. Explain to student that throughout the bay of Pigs invasion, members that Kennedy’s staff who disagreed through the activity refused come voice their negative opinions, no wanting to slam the larger group. After this failure, Kennedy altered his leadership style, wanting to discover all alternatives before make a decision.

Tell students castle will now be role-playing as national security advisers to chairman Kennedy, a team known during the Cuban Missile dilemm as EXCOMM. Every student team will be assigned one policy option brainstormed earlier and also will it is in responsible for:

List that pros and cons because that the group’s policy choiceVisual aid—on poster paper—to existing pros and also cons come the class

Divide the course into groups and also assign one policy choice per team for additional exploration. Distribution the Confidential files to every group. Phone call students lock will use these Confidential files to assistance their plan choices. Distribute a T-Chart to each group and also instruct castle to use it to do a pros/cons chart. Distribution poster file and mite to each team to build a visual assist that will recognize their plan option and the pros/cons of that option.


4. Acting together EXCOMM, students current their plan arguments and also the course comes to consensus on one response.

After groups end up drafting your pros and also cons v visual aids ~ above poster paper, have actually each group existing their policy and also its accompanying pros and also cons. After each group presents, students might ask questions about the group’s policy and thinking. Have the whole course summarize the presentation by identify the most significant pro and also con because that the policy. Ask college student to assistance all statements with proof taken from the Confidential Files.

After all teams have presented, have actually students talk about all the alternatives that to be presented.


5. To compare the EXCOMM course consensus come Kennedy’s actual an answer to the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Play the Red Threat video clip clip to the class. After ~ watching, ask:

What policy selection did Kennedy make in response to the Cuban Missile Crisis?Compared come the pros and also cons lists developed earlier, perform you believe Kennedy make the best possible decision? Why or why not?

6. Research the outcomes the the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Explain come students the adhering to outcomes that the Cuban Missile Crisis. Project these clues in a PowerPoint presentation or write them on a item of poster paper.

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After the blockade, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev sent out a letter to Kennedy. Khrushchev i agreeed to remove missiles from Cuba if the United states promised no to attack Cuba and also to at some point remove missiles native Turkey.Kennedy agreed. The United states secretly removed missiles native Turkey. Khrushchev openly removed missiles from Cuba, ending the Cuban Missile Crisis.

 Close the activity with a discussion of the inquiries below. Ask:

To what extent was Kennedy a effective leader in this crisis?Why was Kennedy much more successful in the Cuban Missile situation than he was throughout the only of Pigs invasion? In what ways?