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Ike Hits Kennedy’s “Crash Space Program”

Aug. 6, 1962 - Former President Eisenhower has assailed what he calls the Kennedy Administration’s “crash program” to put a man on the moon as “a mad effort to win a stunt race.” In an article in the Saturday Evening Post, General Eisenhower wrote: “I frankly do not see the need for continuing this effort as such a fantastically expensive crash program. We learn that the Space Director is asking almost $40 billion this coming year for his agency alone — and future amounts are to go up progressively. Now, I am just as proud as any other American of John Glenn and Scott Carpenter and our other astronauts. Indeed, I personally approved the project for selecting and training our future space explorers. But why the great hurry to get to the moon and the planets? We have already demonstrated that in everything except the power of our booster rockets, we are leading the world in scientific space exploration. From here on, I think we should proceed in an orderly, scientific way, building one accomplishment on another, rather than engaging in a mad effort to win a stunt race.”


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