A Letter From The Publisher, Apr. 5, 1971

ELWOOD QUESADA, the first Federal Aviation Administrator, was excited at the end of his conversation with Dwight Eisenhower. The first reporter to find out why was TIME'S Jerry Hannifin. "I've just seen the President," Quesada told him, "and he's approved the commercial Mach 2!"

That was "in 1959. The product of that decision was the SST project now rejected by the Congress. Hannifin, still TIME'S Washington-based aviation correspondent, had followed the program closely from its birth to its death and was in a perfect position to report on Washington developments for this week's cover story and related articles on the SST. He...

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