JFK+50: Volume 6, No. 2107CIA COULDN'T ANSWER JFK'S QUESTION ON MISSILES IN CUBA
In October 1962, at the same time JFK was considering a course of action in the Missile Crisis, the Central Intelligence Agency could not tell him for certain if the Soviet missiles in Cuba were armed with nuclear warheads. This is important because the President's military advisers were favoring an armed invasion of Cuba by American forces.
Michael Dobbs writes:
"A week after the discovery of the Soviet missiles, CIA analysts were still unable to answer the president's most urgent question: where are the nuclear warheads?"
"The Soviet nuclear arsenal...far exceeded the worst nightmares of anyone in Washington. It included....(not only) the ballistic missiles...but (also) an array of smaller weapons that could wipe out an invading army..."
Mr. Dobbs also lists the nuclear warheads that were in Cuba as follows...
36 one megaton for medium range R-12 missiles
*note: 1 megaton - 1 million tons of TNT, 1 kilaton - 1000 tons of TNT