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WASHINGTON - FEBRUARY 11, 1962:  (EDITORIAL USE ONLY)  (FILE PHOTO)  U.S. President John F. Kennedy speaks during a televised speech to the nation about the Cuban missile crisis February 11, 1962 in Washington, DC. Former Russian and U.S. officials attending a conference commemorating the 40th anniversary of the missile crisis October 2002 in Cuba said that the world was closer to a nuclear conflict during the 1962 standoff between Cuba and the U.S., than governments were aware of.  (Photo by Getty Images)
History - Science
During the Cuban Missile Crisis, John F. Kennedy held secret meetings for nearly a week regarding the United States' next move after a U-2 spy plane flying above Cuba photographed missile sites being constructed on the island. Kennedy got insight from one of the few people in history to have also sat behind the Oval Office's Resolute Desk.
President Dwight Eisenhower was briefed twice on the events in Cuba, at which time he was informed of Kennedy's plan to set up a blockade around Cuba. Eisenhower, a highly decorated and respected general, sent a message through CIA director John McCone that he approved of how Kennedy was handling the situation.
In a recording of the two men strategizing, Kennedy and Eisenhower sound noticeably relaxed given the circumstance, even chuckling at times. Kennedy even asks Eisenhower about his thoughts on if the Soviets would start a nuclear war if the United States invaded Cuba and Eisenhower responds matter-of-factly,
“Oh, I don't believe that they will.”