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2022

Max Hastings - The Abyss

Max Hastings - The Abyss

On 14 October 1962 the US and the USSR clashed when the Russian government moved nuclear warheads to the island of Cuba.  The US responded to this perceived threat, and in a 13-day stand-off Nikita Khrushchev and President John F Kennedy engaged in a tense war of words and positioning which became known as the Cuban Missile Crisis.

In gripping, authoritative pages, Hastings tells the story of a war that seemed like a stalemate, and a threat that could have meant apocalypse. Threaded together are close-up character portraits and big picture analysis, military collisions and accounts of the social, political forces that dictated decisions.

This is a new history for a new generation, putting fresh, international context on an astonishing military and political showdown. In those throes of the Cold War, hundreds of millions of people around the world were, for some days, terrified that a nuclear holocaust was imminent. Bringing together the threads of American bellicosity and Soviet brinksmanship, it becomes clear that while both sides eventually stepped away from destruction, that does not mean disaster was not terrifyingly close.

Casting new light on an epic clash of wills, this is the story of when the abyss beckoned.

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