The Apollo 11 Space Flight: Man Explores the Moon and Gains Perspective

2473 Words10 Pages
The 1960's brought cultural transformation through outbreaks of violence and contention. The "Love and Peace" slogan led to a bloody fear of "War and Hate." It was an era of protest and revolt. The decade began with the assassinations of John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr., escalated with the viciousness of Vietnam, and ended with the suspicion of Watergate. And somewhere in the terror of freedom, we saw two Americans walk on the moon. It was while staring at that crystalline sphere hovering above us that we pondered the scope of our opportunity. On that warm summer night it was a miracle of technology, a step into a new world, a celebrated triumph. We engaged in a political race to the moon against the Communists with a democratic…show more content…
Project Apollo would require the talents of more than 100,000 team members and the technology of many industries. Giant caterpillar "earth crawlers" were built to transport pieces of the rockets from forty-five-story assembly buildings to the launching pad. Once assembled, the perfected spacecraft would reach half the height of the Washington Monument in D.C. Without a doubt, Project Apollo was the nation's most challenging task ever undertaken with the exception of war. And all this perfection was complicated when President Kennedy set this goal on May 25, 1961: "I believe 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" (Spirit 4).

Despite the United States efforts to score points in the "Space Race," the USSR remained ahead. In August of 1962, the Soviet Union climbed a higher rung with the Nikolayev-Popovich expedition. While orbiting the earth, the Twin Vostoks were so precisely targeted, that they came within an astounding three miles of each other (a matter of seconds at the speeds of space). This was the skill needed to accurately join the lunar module with the spacecraft after astronauts had walked on the moon.

Again the faithful words of Kennedy rang out through the TV stations and newspapers of America: "The

More about The Apollo 11 Space Flight: Man Explores the Moon and Gains Perspective

Get Access