In the clash of ideologies represented by the Cold War, even the
heavens were not immune to militarization. Satellites and space
programs became critical elements among the national security
objectives of both the United States and the Soviet Union.
According toa"US""aPresidents and the Militarization of Space,
1946OCo1967," three American presidents in succession shared a
fundamental objective of preserving space as a weapons-free
frontier for the benefit of all humanity. Between 1953 and 1967
Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, and Johnson all saw nonaggressive
military satellite development, as well as the civilian space
program, as means to favorably shape the international
communityOCOs opinion of the scientific, technological, and
military capabilities of the United States. Sean N. KalicOCOs
reinterpretation of the development of US space policy, based on
documents declassified in the past decade, demonstrates that a
single vision for the appropriate uses of space characterized
American strategies across parties and administrations during this
Significantly, KalicOCOs findings contradict the popular opinion
that the United States sought to weaponize space and calls into
question the traditional interpretation of the space race as a
simple action/reaction paradigm. Indeed, beyond serving as a symbol
and ambassador of US technological capability, its satellite
program provided the United States with advanced, nonaggressive
military intelligence-gathering platforms that proved critical in
assessing the strategic nuclear balance between the United States
and the Soviet Union. It also aided the three administrations in
countering the Soviet UnionOCOs increasing international prestige
after its series of space firsts, beginning with the launch of
Sputnik in 1957.
Texas A & M University Press
|Country of origin:
||Centennial of Flight
Sean N Kalic
||Electronic book text - Windows
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