President Kennedy orders five hundred Green Beret military advisors to South Vietnam to help President Diem in his fight against the Viet Cong.
Suspension of diplomatic relations with Cuba.
Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) Direct James Farmer leads a group of black and white "freedom riders" on a bus trip from Washington, D.C., to New Orleans to protest continued segregation in the South.
President Eisenhower warns of "military-industrial complex" in his farewell address.
The Berlin Wall, separating the East German and West German sectors of Berlin, is erected by the East German government.
Peace Corps and Alliance for Progress created.
The Bay of Pigs invasion: a U.S.-trained force of Cuban exiles invades Cuba in an attempt to overthrow Castro; they are quickly defeated (April 17).