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A Voice for Freedom

On this 236th observance since Independence Day was established in the United States, this is appropriate, even as we prepare for our own Fourth of July party.  Today’s post celebrates the voice of courage belonging to one who made gut-wrenching decisions to keep the freedom in which we still live.  As a baby boomer, I remember well the words, and the sound, of John F. Kennedy’s 1961 Inaugural Address – “Ask not what your country can do for you . . . ”  But he also spoke these chilling words, addressing the nation in October 1962, in a standoff with Cuba and Russia:

 

Too Close for Comfort

This event marked the closest our nation came to the Cold War becoming a full blown nuclear disaster.  Cuba was at that time building bases with Russian missiles capable of striking targets in much of the continental United States.  A new generation has since witnessed a strike on home soil, September 11, 2001.  The potential of the Cuban missile crisis was arguably even more lethal, if that is possible.

The Kennedy Administration initiated a military blockade of arms shipments to Cuba which predictably escalated rhetoric coming from the Kremlin. It was through behind-the-scenes communications that same month, in cooperation with the United Nations Secretary General, that the then Russian Premier Nikita Khrushchev agreed to begin dismantling nuclear hardware on the Cuban Island and crisis was averted.

It is at times like this when the voice of a leader can marshal the resolve of a nation, even in the face unthinkable prospects.  I remember the voice of President John F. Kennedy.

 

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July 4, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , ,

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