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Rocket Man

Discussion in 'History of Germany during World War II' started by Jim, Apr 19, 2007.

  1. Jim

    Jim Active Member

    Sep 1, 2006
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    via War44
    The Cold War was in full swing and Sputnik spun in the heavens. Wernher von Braun, "a thoroughly Americanized German," explained satellite flight on a blackboard at the Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Ala. and dreamed of a "manned satellite to curb Russia's military ambitions."
    Von Braun, then the chief of development at the U.S. Army Ballistic Missile Agency was "the free world's top practical rocket man and its boldest theoretician of space travel," explained LIFE. As a boy in Berlin he practiced his science in the municipal dump. At 32, he built the V-2 missiles that plagued England toward the end of the war. In 1945 Von Braun and most of his top scientists moved to the U.S. to work for the Army. By 1957 his eyes were set on manned space flight.
    Von Braun hoped that space filght would "free man from his remaining chains, the chains of gravity which still tie him to this planet." Speaking to a LIFE reporter- photographer team, he added, in a characteristically poetic outburst: "It will open to him the gates of heaven." The existing hardware was almost ready to launch a man into space, said Von Braun. The return trip, however, still posed some problems. "We could put a man into orbit in a year. But don't ask me how we'd get him back."


    Source: Life

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