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not attacking that ship!
We were firing over it!
That was not the President's intention
when he gave that order
What if the Soviets
don't see the distinction?
What if they make the same mistake
I just made?
There will be no firing anything
near any Soviet ships
without my express permission!
Is that understood, Admiral?
Is it?
Yes, sir
And I will only
issue such instructions...
when ordered to by the President!
John Paul Jones!
You don't understand a thing
do you, Admiral?
This is not a blockade!
This is language!
A new vocabulary, the likes of
which the world has never seen!
This is President Kennedy
communicating with Secretary Krushcev
(Atlas Missile Launch Vandenberg, AFB)
Who the hell
authorized this missile test?
Who do you think?
God knows what this is
gonna communicate to the Soviets
Communicate with the Soviets?
We can't communitcate
with the Pentagon
and it's just across the goddam river
LaMay must think you're afraid of him
I'm not taking that biat
The right move here is to move on
This is United States Destroyer
Joseph P. Kennedy!
This is point
at which we are concemed...
that there might be shooting
among the ships at sea
with the possibility that invasion
might have to be undertaken
to assure that
those bases are eliminated
If invasion is undertaken
the Russians have said
that they would
retaliate with rocket fire
We have said
if there's rocket fire from Cuba
we will retaliate
And there goes the whole ballgame
What's this?
Can anyone just walk in here now?
Ken, don't worry
I'm not here to do an interview
If you're looking for a cup of sugar
John, you got the wrong door
we need to see the President
Something's happened
I have lunch with him
Maybe once a month
Way the talks, he acts like
he knows Kruschev personally
but he's never elaborated
I've used him as a source
in a couple of stories
The FBI has identified
this Alexander Fomin as the...
Soviet Rezident, the KGB equivalent
of one of our station chiefs
He's their highest ranking spy
in this country
And he knows John's a friend of mine
All the trademarks of
a back-channel overture
Yeah. Some back channel
ABC News guy
My goddamn next-door neighbor
So they'll remove the missiles
And we'll pledge not to
invade Cuba or de-stabilize Castro
or assist anyone who plans on doing so
I think this may be
our first real message from Kruschev
The alternative, Mr. President
is that is this could be a trap
And how is that exactly?
Dangle a settlement
tie us down in negotiations
we come up short
Why else would they
approach us this way?
It's deniable
The Soviets have done nothing
but lie to us
This could just be more of the same
That may be
why Kruschev's introducing this guy
We're been burned by his usual players
in the formal channels
so he brings in an honest broker
That may be what they want us to think
The truth is
we don't really know
who Fomin speaks for
It could be Kruschev
It could be some faction
in the Politburo
Or the KGB itself
We just don't know
By the way, Scali
your activities now fall under...
the secrecy codicils
of the National Security Act
Sorry, John
No Pulitzer
Mr. President, we haven't much time
I'm scheduled to meet with him again
in three and a half hours
So it seems the question of the day is
is the offer legitimate?
And if it is
we can't afford to ignore it
So, John...
We'll have instructions for you
in a couple of hours
Thank you
Thank you
We don't have much time
to play out back-channe
I want you to get over
to your old stomping grounds...
and go through everything
the FBI has on Fomin
I need your best call
Is the guy legit
and is he speaking for Kruschev?
So what we've got here is this guy
Alexander Feklisov
AKA Alexander Fomin
delclared Consul to the Soviet Embassy
but in reality the KGB Papa Spy
An illustrious tour of duty
during the Great Patriotic War
gets him on the
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