The Eagle Has Landed Essay

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“We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.” (John F. Kennedy) The nineteen-sixties were the most important decade during the Space Race, because American perseverance overcame a more advanced Soviet space program and reached the moon. Accordingly, national leaders of the sixties were a huge driving force behind the Space Race as they inspired their people to literally shoot for the moon and take the lead in the ‘Space Race’.…show more content…
Kennedy did not initiate the space program’s true potential it would not have been able to so quickly catch up to the superior Soviet program. In fact, Kennedy’s space program was able to make Alan Shepard the first American in space after only one year. (John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum) Project Mercury, although started in the very late fifties, saw a sharp rise in progress and activity after the turn of the century. In the short span of a year, NASA conducted fifteen unmanned flights to test new equipment. These flights proved valuable in developing boosters, spacecraft, and a tracking system for future manned flights. Mercury reaches its goal in May 1961 when Alan Shepard successfully orbited the Earth. Afterwards, six more manned missions were launched until the project came to an end. Mercury was a huge success and it managed to carry out its original goal of putting a human in orbit. (Kennedy Space Center) Soon following, came the Apollo program with the intention of landing on the moon. In February 1966, the Apollo program completed its first unmanned mission with mild success. Almost two years later, Apollo 8 became the first manned flight to successfully orbit the moon – the United States now had a win under their belt. Finally the moment came when the famous Apollo 11, or ‘the Eagle,’ touched down on the moon. According to the British Broadcasting Company, ‘it was one of the defining

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