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GITMO: The Missile Crisis Donald Hubbard

GITMO: The Missile Crisis

Donald Hubbard

Published November 16th 2010
Kindle Edition
343 pages
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 About the Book 

GITMO: The Missile Crisis By Don HubbardThis fast-moving, fact-based historical novel documents the critical events that happened at the U.S. Naval Base, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.In that year the world’s two great super-powers, the United States and the Soviet Union, faced off in a near catastrophic test of wills which threatened to end in a nuclear holocaust. This began on 7 April 1961, when a group of Cuban dissidents attempted to make a hostile landing in Cuba, at a location known as The Bay Of Pigs. This hostile invasion was assisted by the government of the United States, and the Soviet Union used this American involvement as an excuse to establish a military alliance between the Soviet Union and the Government of Cuba to allegedly “protect” the Cuban Communist State from invasion by the U.S. Chairman Khrushchev took one additional step and secretly placed offensive nuclear missiles on the Cuban mainland, threatening the United States, less than 100 miles to the north. American reconnaissance aircraft discovered these missiles in early October 1962. President Kennedy quickly reacted by imposing a quarantine on all Soviet shipping headed for Cuba. The world had no idea what the Soviet reaction would be, but many thought it would end in a disastrous nuclear war. The world waited for thirteen days during which Kennedy and Khrushchev mutually worked to hammer out a face-saving solution and a missile stand-down.The small naval base at Guantanamo Bay, on Cuba’s southeast coast, was a major pawn in the game. For years it had functioned as a peaceful training facility: Ships came, crews trained, ships left. The routine on the base was casual and sleepy. The Bay of Pigs abruptly changed that. Suddenly, Guantanamo became the eye in the storm, surrounded by enemies with new and greatly improved weapons and commanded by a hostile Fidel Castro. Castro demanded that the United States abandon Guantanamo and cede the territory to Cuba. Faced with this serious threat, it became necessary to rapidly fortify the base and augment the staff. This factual novel tells the base’s story - sometimes worrisome, sometimes humorous, but always exciting - as seen through the eyes of LCDR Glenn Wynter, a naval aviator, who receives emergency orders to report to Guantanamo on four days notice. Working for the admiral, his job is to organize all aircraft activity and coordinate them with surface ship operations. Very quickly Soviet seaborne shipping and submarine activity increase, as does the threat to the base. On 22 October1962, President John F. Kennedy formally announced the quarantine of Soviet shipping, and fearing war, ordered the immediate evacuation of the 2,810 dependent women and children on four unprepared navy warships. On the same day, 5,000 fully-equipped marines with heavy artillery and tanks were landed at Guantanamo and deployed into new, Seabee-built, defensive positions. Khrushchev reacted by placing a Soviet nuclear-tipped cruise missile fifteen miles northwest of the base, to be launched if Cuba was invaded. While the final outcome of the “missile crisis” is known, this previously untold story about the transformation of the naval station at Guantanamo into a military bastion is an action-packed, highly readable navy sea story.