Thankfully war was averted though few Americans fully understood what occurred. American President John Kennedy sought to explain the situation and dispel beliefs that the Soviets had kept weapons hidden on the island. To do so the Defense Intelligence Agency's John Hughes went on television on February 6, 1963 and used geographic tools such as maps and photo interpretation to explain the Soviet buildup, threat, and withdrawal.
Below are eight clips from the briefing.
Today the use of photo interpretation and maps to investigate non-geography oriented subjects is common place. For example public agencies in charge of wildlife management, fire control, military planning use these techniques. Even private groups like those interested in real estate development or legal issues with property ownership will study maps and recent imagery to obtain on the ground facts photos give as well as other, less visible factors maps describe.