The Second Cuban Missile Crisis: We Could Really Use Some Serious National Leadership About Now

The Chinese Communists are currently in discussions with Cuba about establishing a joint training facility in that island nation. Given the template the Chinese have used in other nations, this means almost certainly an agreement that will allow for the basing of Chinese military personnel on Cuban soil…

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FILLER

nce that occurs and a platform is established, we will have no control in the future over how much this military presence expands.It is completely possible that in a short space of time, a Chinese military force in Cuba will grow to include offensive weapons as well. That means missiles. That means aircraft. That means an immediate, no-notice threat to the continental United States.

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China’s new YJ-21 hypersonic missile has a top speed of Mach 10. That works out to well over 7000 miles per hour. A missile moving at Mach 10 can cross the United States from coast to coast in 30 minutes. Flight time from Cuba to Miami for such a weapon would be less than two minutes.

We will never be able to intercept such missiles fired from Cuba in time to prevent them from striking their targets in mainland America.

We know Chinese hypersonic missiles can carry conventional warheads. We also know the Chinese are working on mounting nuclear warheads on such weapons.

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We are now standing on the brink of a second Cuban Missile Crisis. What we are facing is a mortal threat to our national security. Since the Monroe Doctrine was enunciated in the early years of the republic, the United States has stood steadfast behind the principle that we will not allow foreign powers to intervene in the Western Hemisphere. That two-hundred-year-old doctrine is now being directly challenged by the communist government of Cuba and the Chinese.

All of this is occurring against the backdrop of an already broader ongoing Chinese attack on the United States.

Fentanyl is killing over 100,000 Americans a year. It is “cooked” in Mexico. The precursor chemicals for its manufacture come on an industrial scale from China with the knowledge of the Chinese Communist Party and their tacit approval.

Military-age Chinese males are now coming across our wide open southern border by the thousands. There is every indication that this is happening with the knowledge and assistance of the Chinese government. The purpose of this remains unclear.

The Chinese have now also established a presence in the Bahamas focused on spying on a secretive American underwater test range where nuclear submarines prepare for deployment. The intent is obviously to give the Chinese the capacity to track and destroy both our attack and missile subs and thereby gain a strategic advantage in a future conflict.

More broadly, the Chinese are aggressively expanding the scope of their influence all across Latin America. Nation after nation is being bought. We are being challenged repeatedly on our own doorstep.

In 1961 John F. Kennedy recognized immediately that the presence of Russian missiles in Cuba was completely unacceptable. There was nothing to discuss or negotiate. The Russians needed to withdraw their missiles and they needed to do it immediately.

Kennedy then took the necessary steps to signal that he was prepared to fight in order to compel the Russians to comply. He deployed naval forces. He directed the military to prepare to carry out strikes on targets in Cuba. The Russians correctly assessed that they had misjudged Kennedy and he would do what was required to push them out. As a result, the Russians withdrew their missiles.

We have currently returned to 1961. A hostile foreign power is directly signaling it intends to move military personnel into another nation 90 miles from our shores. The response that needs to be taken should be clear and undeniable.

We must let the Chinese know we will not tolerate the presence of their military personnel or forces in Cuba. We must prescribe a fixed time period – perhaps 72 hours – within which the Chinese need to commit to complying and walking away from any stationing of their soldiers on Cuban soil.

Then we need to precisely articulate the steps we intend to take if they do not comply. Such steps need not be limited to kinetic military actions. For the most part, the Chinese still live or die based on their access to U.S. markets and American investment capital.  If China is cut off from that financial access their entire economy could collapse in short order and Xi Jinping finds himself deposed.

We are not powerless. We have a wide range of options. What we lack right now is authentic leadership at the national level with the willingness backbone and integrity to stand up to the CCP. ✪

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