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Welcome to the portal page for the Midnight ATL, a timeline in which the Cuban Missile Crisis escalated, resulting in World War III, the collapse of multiple nations, and the death of over two and a half billion people. It is, as of 2012, the single most expensive, damaging, and deadly war in the history of mankind and the first mutual nuclear war in human history.
On October 15, 1962, the CIA's National Photographic Intelligence Center reviewed several photos taken from U-2s over Cuba. Missiles capable of reaching and destroying much of the eastern seaboard had been identified. That evening, the CIA notified the Department of State and at 8:30 pm, National Security Advisor Tim informed President Kennedy of the situation.
That night, Kennedy had lost much sleep over the ordeal. During a meeting with his cabinet the next day, they came up with several courses of action.
- No action.
- Diplomacy: Use diplomatic pressure to get the Soviet Union to remove the missiles.
- Warning: Send a message to Castro to warn him of the grave danger he, and Cuba were in.
- Blockade: Use the US Navy to block any missiles from arriving in Cuba.
- Air strike: Use the US Air Force to attack all known missile sites.
- Invasion: Full force invasion of Cuba and overthrow of Castro.
The Joint Chiefs of Staff unanimously agreed that a full-scale attack was the only way to end this solution. In OTL, Kennedy reasoned that Berlin would surely be attacked. In this ATL, however, Kennedy's judgment had been impaired due to the lack of sleep. He agrees with the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
On October 20th, OPLAN 316 (full invasion of Cuba by Army and Marines and Navy with Air Force support) was rejected for OPLAN 312 due to the fact that Army units in the United States would have had trouble fielding mechanized and logistical assets, while the US Navy could not supply sufficient amphibious shipping to transport even a modest armored contingent from the Army. OPLAN 312 (primarily an Air Force and Navy carrier operation designed with enough flexibility to do anything from engaging individual missile sites to providing air support for OPLAN 316's ground forces) was approved of and launched.
While a blockade around Cuba formed, OPLAN 312 was a go. The invasion of Cuba began, sparking World War III.