Space: The Grandstands Are Emptying For the Race to the Moon

"I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth."

—President John F. Kennedy, May 25, 1961

The words were inspiring but many a qualified scientist, even as he heard them, was moved to a vague unease. How could so rigid a time limit be set for so awesome a task? Still, the Russians had just put a man in orbit, and the disaster at the Bay of Pigs was embarrassingly fresh. A confident U.S. gesture seemed demanded by U.S. pride....

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