The other other missiles of October: the Thor IRBMs and the Cuban missile crisis
The Cuban missile crisis of 1962 occurred when the USSR deployed nuclear missiles in Cuba, within range of the USA. Yet by 1962 the US had deployed Thor missiles in the UK and Jupiter missiles in Italy and Turkey, within range of the USSR. The story of British-American negotiations to deploy Thor has already been told, as has the story of the Jupiter deployment in Turkey and Italy. This article tells the story of the Thor deployment, in particular in the context of the Cuban crisis. During the crisis the operational condition of both the Soviet missiles in Cuba and the Jupiter missiles were major concerns of the US government. The article demonstrates the very high state of Thor missile readiness, and clarifies several controversies concerning the operational readiness of Bomber Command in October 1962. It then shows that despite their military importance, and potential diplomatic value, the Thors were of nugatory political significance.
Twigge, Stephen and Scott, Len (2000) The other other missiles of October: the Thor IRBMs and the Cuban missile crisis. Electronic Journal of International History (3). ISSN 1471-1443
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