top of page

JFK: Soviets Must Leave Cuba

Mar. 20, 1963 - President Kennedy (pictured in Costa Rica with presidents of Central American nations) said today the U.S. could not accept “a yielding up” of Cuban sovereignty to the Russians. He said the Western Hemisphere “can never be secure” until the Soviet Union leaves Cuba, and “indeed it must and will.” The President spoke at the University of Costa Rica at the end of his three-day visit with the heads of six other Latin American governments. White House officials described the trip as highly successful. The speech at the university was the President’s last appearance before he boarded a helicopter taking him to El Coco airport, 15 miles away, where his plane waited to take him to Washington. In his talk to the university students, the President commented that it must be difficult for Latin American students to consider the U.S. a revolutionary country. “But my country, like all the countries of the Americas, is the possessor of a profound revolutionary tradition which has helped shape the modern world,” he said. He said each nation has “the right to govern itself, to be free from outside dictation or coercion, to mold its own economy.” He added in a decisive tone, “Within our inter-American system, we will accept no new empires and no domination of one nation by another.”


bottom of page