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Khrushchev Talks Tough

Jan. 19, 1963 - Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev said today the Russians have as many as 120 missiles ready to be launched against the U.S. in case of war. Khrushchev, speaking to East German iron workers at Eisenhüttenstadt, gave no indication whether the missiles were based inside Russia or elsewhere. He said: “The American imperialists know that we withdrew 40 rockets from Cuba, but we have set up 80, probably even 120, in other places. Cuba is not the most convenient place to base rockets.” It was Khrushchev’s most anti-Western speech since he arrived for the Communist Party congress in East Berlin. Khrushchev said the Soviet Union’s strength prevented the U.S. from invading Cuba. “The U.S. wanted to send 300,000 men against Cuba. They showed their teeth like wolves, but they still did not bite,” he said. “Have the American imperialists lost their appetite?”


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