The Cold War: To Infinity And Beyond

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To Infinity and Beyond In October of 1957, the Soviet Union launched their satellite, Sputnik, through the atmosphere and into the Earth’s orbit, immediately demanding attention from the rest of the world. With Soviet Union tensions already skyrocketing at the peak of the Cold War, America and her citizens were blanketed with fear and fascination of the strange object that was whirring above their heads and homes. Less than a year later however, Congress established the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, or NASA, and we entered the Great Space Race ourselves. Ever since then, the goals and integrity of the national Space Program have remained the same. Space exploration through NASA has provided America with a platform to establish…show more content…
While historically as a country the United States has maintained a status of wealth, prosperity and power through the 20th and 21st centuries, there have been times where it’s been threatened by other world powers like Germany, Japan, China and the Soviet Union/Russia. In the case of the Cold War, when talks of nuclear war weapons were almost as abundant as they are today, the Soviets were the one power that intimidated the rest of the world the most. By launching a functioning satellite into orbit before the U.S. established a national space program, America was inferior, yet determined none the less, to “prove the superiority of its own ideology and the society that it had spawned” (Olson and Freeman, Space Race). And that’s exactly what NASA went on to eventually do; sending American men into orbit and to the moon before the Soviets. The victory was viewed as “a triumph of American technology” (Olson and Freeman, Space Race), and established America as a premier navigator into the great unknown of outer…show more content…
Outer space has been a mystery since the earliest of times, and aspects of it will still boggle the minds of many for years to come, however NASA has made advancements and discoveries in the past 57 years that have given us extreme insight into the galaxy that our planet is a part of. “Voyager probes were NASA’s more important achievement in computerized exploration to date. They examined Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune, sending thousands of images to Earth that taught scientists much about those planets” (Sowards, Space Exploration). Probes developed and launched by NASA have also investigated Venus, Mars, Mercury, the moon, and the sun. When people argue that the amount of money being “poured” into the program is absurd, they fail to realize how vital the information being collected is for the posterity of our planet. Components like the moon and sun affect us daily, and without further and extensive knowledge of their rotation patterns, gravitational pull, chemical and physical makeup, and their overwhelming power in the solar system, we may never be able to answer questions about the environment, the atmosphere, or the future here on

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