"Ich bin ein Berliner!"
He inherits a secret war against the
Communist Castro dictatorship in Cuba...

...a war run by the CIA
and angry Cuban exiles.

Castro is a successful revolutionary...
...frightening to American business
interests in Latin America.

This war culminates in the disastrous
Bay of Pigs invasion...

...in April, 1961...
...when Kennedy refuses to provide
air cover for the exiled Cuban brigade.

Kennedy takes public responsibility
for the failure.

He privately claims the CIA lied to him...
...and tried to manipulate him into ordering
an American invasion of Cuba.

In October, 1962...
...the world comes to the brink
of nuclear war...

...when Kennedy quarantines Cuba...
...after announcing the presence
of offensive Soviet nuclear missiles...

...90 miles off American shores.
Soviet ships with more missiles
sail towards Cuba...

...but at the last moment they turn back.
The world breathes with relief.
In Washington, rumors abound
that JFK has cut a secret deal...

...with Russian Premier Khrushchev...
...not to invade Cuba in return
for a Russian withdrawal of missiles.

Suspicions abound that Kennedy
is soft on communism.

Kennedy also finds himself embroiled
in Laos and Vietnam.

We've got our difficulties there.
Unless a greater effort is made
by the government...

...to win popular support,
I don't think the war can be won there.

Is their war. They're the ones
who have to win it or lose it.

Early that fateful summer...
...Kennedy speaks of his new vision
at the American University.

What kind of peace do I mean?
What kind of peace do we seek?
Not a Pax Americana...
...enforced on the world
by American weapons of war.

We must re-examine our own attitudes
towards the Soviet Union.

Our most basic, common link...
...is that we all inhabit...
...this small planet.
We all breathe the same air.