Strategic analysis of Operation Anadyr

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Southern New Hampshire University
The Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962 was provoked by the US in response to the discovery of Operation Anadyr, the Soviet deployment of military equipment to Cuba. Operation Anadyr was intended to deter further US hostility against the Cuban government of Fidel Castro. For most of the history of US-Cuban relations, Cuba was either a US protectorate or client state, and under the Monroe Doctrine the US forbade Cuban cultivation of any European ally. In 1962, the US stationed nuclear missiles and conventional forces on Soviet borders; the US held unquestioned strategic superiority. The objectives of Operation Anadyr were to deter continued US attacks on Castro's Cuba and bolster the Soviet strategic deterrent, i.e., deter US hostile actions against the USSR. However, even if Operation Anadyr had not been discovered by the US, the impact of the deployed weapons on the balance of power and deterrence would have been minimal; the deployed weapons were not sufficiently numerous or capable of a disarming first strike. In contrast to the publicly held US position, the Soviet Operation Anadyr was neither an aggressive deployment intended to launch a first strike against the US nor an unprecedented escalation. (Author abstract)