What is the relationship between the Cubal Missile Crisis and the concepts mutually assured destruction and detente?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

To me, the major relationship between the Cuban Missile Crisis and the concept of MAD is that the Crisis really led to greater efforts on the part of both sides to create the MAD situation.

The Crisis was caused by the fact that there was not a situation where both sides' destruction was assured.  The US had a much better chance of destroying the USSR than vice versa.  After the Crisis, it seemed more important for there to be balance.  If there were a balance -- if MAD existed -- then the two sides would have to be much more careful.  They would have to ensure that situations like the Crisis could not arise again.

The Crisis helped to cause MAD to come about.  You can argue that this also helped lead to detente as both sides felt that MAD made conflict too dangerous.

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