Distance to which Cuban missiles may travel at their maximum range
|SS-4 SANDAL||SS-5 SKEAN|
|Yield||1-1.3/2-2/3 Mt||1.0 or 2.0 -2.3 Mt|
|Range (km)||2,000 km||4500 or 3200 -3700 km|
In 1962, why did the Soviet Union station nuclear weapons in Cuba?
In total, the Soviets were constructing nine sites: six for R-12 medium-range ballistic missiles (NATO designation SS-4 Sandal), which had an effective range of 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles), and three for R-14 intermediate-range ballistic missiles (NATO designation SS-5 Skean), which had a maximum range of 4,500 kilometers (2,500 miles) (2,800 mi).
During the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962, the leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union engaged in a tense, 13-day political and military standoff over the deployment of nuclear-armed Soviet missiles in Cuba, which was just 90 miles from the beaches of the United States.
Because of the presence of tactical nuclear weapons on the island, the United States would have lost virtually all of its 180,000 troops in the assault as well as all of the Marines currently stationed at Guantanamo. Fortunately, the members of the household had already been evacuated. Both sides would be forced into a full-fledged nuclear exchange at this time.
The following types of ballistic missiles are available: medium-range ballistic missiles, which travel between 1,000 and 3,000 kilometers (approximately 620 to 1,860 miles); intermediate-range ballistic missiles, which travel between 3,000 and 5,500 kilometers (approximately 1,860-3,410 miles); and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), which travel more than 5,500 kilometers.
The following types of ballistic missiles are available: medium-range ballistic missiles, which travel between 1,000 and 3,000 kilometers (approximately 620-1,860 miles); intermediate-range ballistic missiles, which travel between 3,000 and 5,500 kilometers (approximately 1,860-3,410 miles); and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), which travel more than 5,500 kilometers.
Why did the Soviet Union station nuclear weapons in Cuba? Khrushchev wished to help the newly established communist state in what he called “Uncle Sam’s backyard,” and to assure that the United States would not attempt another episode like the Bay of Pigs by overthrowing Castro.
The Cuban Missile Crisis, according to historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr., was “the most hazardous moment in the history of humanity.” Scholars and politicians alike agree that the world came the closest it has ever gone to nuclear Armageddon for a period of several days.
“The most perilous moment in human history,” wrote historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr., during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. A consensus among academics and policymakers is that for many days, the world came dangerously near to nuclear Armageddon.
Cuba was armed with more than 100 tactical nuclear weapons, all of which were unknown to the United States. These weapons included 80 nuclear-armed front cruise missiles (FKRs), 12 nuclear warheads for dual use lunar space launchers (Luna), and six nuclear bombs for IL-28 bombers (all of which were unknown to the United States).
In April 1963, the United States withdrew its Jupiter missiles from Turkey. The Cuban missile crisis is remembered as a one-of-a-kind incident during the Cold War that boosted President John F. Kennedy’s reputation both locally and globally. It may also have had a role in lowering negative public perceptions of the failed Bay of Pigs invasion throughout the world.
Cuba does not possess nuclear weapons, and there have been no credible allegations of Cuban efforts to obtain nuclear weapons in the past few months. Cuba is not believed to be in possession of chemical weapons, and there are no credible claims of the country possessing long-range ballistic missiles either.
Newly declassified records suggest that the United States and the Soviet Union came closer to nuclear war in November 1983, at the height of Cold War tensions, than historians—and even many officials at the time—had previously realized.
The SS-18, nicknamed ‘Satan,’ is the longest-range Russian missile, with a range of 12,070 kilometers. It entered service in the early 1980s and has a range of 12,070 kilometers (7,500 miles).
It is designated by the letters R-36M. (SS-18 Satan) This Russian intercontinental ballistic missile is the heaviest and most powerful ballistic missile ever built, according to the United Nations. It is a member of the R-36 family of missiles, which have been in service since the Soviet Union’s first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) was launched in 1971.