Archive for the ‘Soviet’ Category

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Sub-scale and classified: the top secret CIA model of a Soviet launch pad

January 25, 2011

After the Moon Race was won and the remaining Saturn rockets consigned to museums, it became common for members of the media to claim that there had never been a race at all. Even Walter Cronkite, who had been one of the most enthusiastic supporters of the Apollo program in the 1960s, later said that the United States had been “racing itself” to the Moon.

At the height of the race, NASA administrator James Webb had claimed that the Soviet Union was actively racing the United States to place a man on the Moon. But the press and the public started to see these claims as self-serving, if not outright lies. Webb only made statements, and provided no proof. By the 1970s, when no Soviet Moon rocket appeared and the Soviets denied that they had ever done anything as stupidly expensive as trying to land a man on the Moon, it was easy for westerners to doubt there had ever been a race.

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