Neo-Nazis Picket White House; Urge Kennedy to Invade Cuba

This is a shocking old photo from 1962. These neo-Nazis are protesting in front of the White House during the Cuban Missile Crisis (October 14th to 28th, 1962), pushing for President Kennedy to invade Cuba.

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Demonstrators from a broad political spectrum picket outside the White House during the height of the Cold War confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union over the placement of missile silos in Cuba. The Cuban missile crisis demonstration attracted elements on the fringe of American society as evidenced by the last panel frame showing members of an American neo-Nazi group protesting President John F. Kennedy’s “soft” stance on Cuba.
Demonstrators from a broad political spectrum picket outside the White House during the height of the Cold War confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union over the placement of missile silos in Cuba. The Cuban missile crisis demonstration attracted elements on the fringe of American society as evidenced by the last panel frame showing members of an American neo-Nazi group protesting President John F. Kennedy’s “soft” stance on Cuba.

Source: Penn State Special Collections

We dug through The New York Times’ archives and came across this article from October 28th, 1962.

WASHINGTON, Cot. 27 — Pickets and counter-pickets paraded before the White House today urging President Kennedy to get tougher with Cuba and, conversely, to keep the peace at any price.

Both sides seemed agreed at midday that an exchange of United States bases in Turkey for Soviet bases in Cuba, as Premier Krushchev had proposed, probably was as good a solution as any they could think of.

The President’s reply in mid-afternoon, reflecting the plan until the Soviet halts the building of the bases in Cuba, restored the partisan battle lines.

The demonstration was called initially by the Student Peace Union, a pacifist organization. A counter-demonstration was then organized by the Young Americans for Freedom, a group with right-wing leanings. Next, a group of Cuban students and refugees, aligned for the moment with the Young Americans for Freedom, set up a picket line of their own.

Finally, five khaki-clad young marchers with swastika arm bands indicating their membership in the American Nazi Party, took over the remaining picketing space on Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House.

At the height of the proceedings in the midafternoon, the police estimated that 1,000 to 1,500 persons were in the various picket lines.

Five dudes in khakis. Not exactly a large neo-Nazi presence, but nevertheless an interesting moment in history captured in the above photo.

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