Sunday, October 26, 2014



Washington, D.C. (JFK+50) Fifty-two years ago today, October 26, 1962, the first Soviet ship bound for Cuba to be stopped and searched by the United States  Navy was the Marucla, a Lebanese freighter chartered by the USSR.

Although having declared only  a cargo of paper, sulfur and spare truck parts, the USS Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr., a destroyer named for President John F. Kennedy's  brother who was killed in World War II, stopped and searched the Soviet leased vessel which was manned primarily by a Greek crew.

White House Press Secretary Pierre Salinger issued a statement saying the Soviets..."are rapidly continuing their construction of missile support and launch facilities."

Michael Dobbs writes that JFK said on October 25...

"We've got to prove sooner or later that the blockade works" and added that the selection of the Marucla as the first ship to stop was because it was almost certain not to contain missiles.

"The stage was set for...'the worst day' of the crisis known as 'Black Saturday.'  Events were about to accelerate dramatically.  The world was hurtling toward a nuclear conflict."


"'Let Us Begin Anew', An Oral History of the Kennedy Presidency, " by Gerald S. and Deborah H. Strober, Harper Collins Publishers, New York, 1993.

"One Minute to Midnight: Kennedy, Khrushchev and Castro on the Brink of Nuclear War," Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 2008.

USAF Photo (1962)


Washington, D.C. (JFK+50) Thirteen years ago today, October 26, 2001 President George W. Bush signed into law today the Uniting and Strengthening America (by) Providing Appropriate Tools Required (to) Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001.

The USA PATRIOT ACT was passed by Congress in response to the 9-11 terrorists attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C.

The act reduces restraints on law enforcement agencies to search records as well as restraints on foreign intelligence gathering.

GW Bush, Obama and Clinton
Photo by Pete Souza
White House Photo (2010)


Tombstone, Arizona Territory (JFK+50) 133 years ago, October 26, 1881, Tombstone City Marshall, V. W. Earp arrested a cowboy named Ike Clanton for disorderly conduct.  Clanton was fined $25 and disarmed in the Justices' Court.
Clanton left, swearing vengeance on the Sheriff and Marshall Earp and his brother Morgan who tried to induce Clanton to leave the town.

At 3 o'clock P.M., the Earp brothers and J.J. Halliday met four cowboys, namely the two Clanton brothers and two McLowery brothers, when a lively fire commenced from the cowboys against the three citizens.  About 30 shots were fired rapidly.*

When the smoke cleared, Frank and Tom McLaury and Billy Clanton lay dead while Morgan and Virgil Earp, along with Doc Holliday, were wounded.  Wyatt Earp was unharmed.

*From a newspaper of the time.

 Gunfight at the OK Corral
 A Reenactment
 Photo by James G. Howes (2008)