So Obama is the new JFK? Well, in my book, that's not any advantage. JFK's inexperience led early in his administration to disaster at the Bay of Pigs, and may have led to disaster in Vietnam.
While the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba was conceived by Dwight Eisenhower's administration, the original plan included massive, unrelenting US air support. JFK, if he had been more shrewd, could and should have scrubbed the entire enterprise. But he scrubbed only that part that INSURED the plan's defeat, namely that no American airpower would be used. His misjudgment led to certain disaster.
In retrospect, the lesson was obvious: don't initiate any military action unless you plan to see it through and win it. To make the invasion even plausibly successful, that probably meant we should have recruited more anti-Castro-ites over here and trained them better, used our air power to the fullest, not only at the invasion points but also inland on supply routes, towns, etc, and used American naval forces if necessary.
If the anti-Castro Cuban forces were insufficient to do the job, American forces should have been available to reinforce them. As events have proven, it made a lot more sense to get rid of Castro and communism and its influence in other Latino countries in Central and South America ...to intervene early on in Cuba -- only 90 miles from our shores --than to get bogged down in some dubious, "risky scheme" 10,000 mile away in Vietnam in what really was a civil war and an effort to do away with the last vestiges of French colonial power, which served no interest of our own.
But both Kennedy and Nixon, his opponent in 1960, were hipped on challenging communism in Vietnam, and if Nixon had won that year rather than JFK, i suspect we'd have been hip deep in Vietnam regardless. and nobody really cared until the reinforcement and casualties began to mount.
By 196l, it was clear who and what Castro was, despite the New York Times assurances he was only a good old fashioned progressive democrat who wanted to get rid of big bad Batista (whom no one liked) and provide an honest self-governing administration similar to ours under a constitution similar to our own, with a regulated new deal kind of free enterprise economy.
If we were serious about getting rid of Castro, we should have done the job properly.
No one knows whether the Ike plan, properly carried out, would have worked. D-day, a much more difficult undertaking under Ike, did.
But we'll never know because JFK, not ready from Day 1, really screwed it up badly, made matters worse by a Marx brothers comedy of errors, using perhaps mobsters and then inept CIA operatives to assassinate Castro, in a series of gross failures which made us look foolish as well as lawless in international eyes and which, some conspiratorial types insist, led to his own assassination less than three years later. There IS some connections between Oswald and Cuba that lends some credence to that suspicion, though I never have bought it.
JFK asked The NY Times not to publish his plan to launch the Bay of Pigs and they agreed not to. The press also went gaga over JFK's saying he took "full responsibility" for the fiasco. He quickly dropped the subject and so did the press. Well, who else could he have blamed it on? Why gain credit for admitting full responsibility for something you cannot escape blame for? Good grief.