John F. Kennedy and the Race to the Moon by John M. Logsdon
(Palgrave Studies in the History of Science and Technology)

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On May 25, 1961, President John Kennedy declared:  "I believe that 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." Over his remaining time in the White House, JFK actively involved himself in space decisions and several times reviewed his decision to go to the Moon, each time concluding that the benefits of being the leader in space outweighed the massive costs of the lunar landing enterprise. Logsdon traces the evolution of JFK's thinking and policy up until his assassination, which brought to an end his reexamination of the program's goal and schedule and his hope to collaborate, rather than compete, with the Soviet Union in going to the Moon. This study, based on extensive research in primary documents and archival interviews with key members of the Kennedy administration, is the definitive examination of John Kennedy's role in sending Americans to the Moon.


About John M. Logsdon

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Dr. John M. Logsdon is Professor Emeritus of Political Science and International Affairs at George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, and until his retirement was the long-time director of GWU's Space Policy Institute. Author of the seminal study The Decision to Go to the Moon (1970) and the main article for “space exploration” in the newest edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica, he is a sought-after commentator on space issues who has appeared on all major broadcast and cable networks, along with many international news shows. He was a member of the NASA Advisory Council from 2005-2009 and remains a member of its Exploration Committee. From 2008-2009 he held the Charles A. Lindbergh Chair in Aerospace History at the National Air and Space Museum. In 2003 he served as a member of the Columbia Accident Investigation Board.
Published February 10, 2011 by Palgrave Macmillan. 306 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Computers & Technology, Science & Math, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

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Although the challenge and risk of manned space flight—something for which Eisenhower had little enthusiasm—particularly appealed to this youthful, competitive man, Kennedy continually revised his thinking, questioning NASA about its priorities and performance, prodding his White House staff for ...

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The Space Review

However, a “Special Space Review” carried out in the fall of 1963—and not completed until after Kennedy’s assassination—found no reason for “backing off” the goal of a human landing on the Moon other than fiscal concerns, suggesting to Logsdon that Kennedy would have likely continued to pursue Ap...

Feb 28 2011 | Read Full Review of John F. Kennedy and the Race ...

Coalition for Space Exploration

In a time when America is looking for another “Sputnik Moment” to spur the country on a number of fronts, this scholarly and well-written look at the nation’s “Apollo Moment” captures presidential decision-making stemming from the heat of the space race between the United States and the former So...

Jan 23 2011 | Read Full Review of John F. Kennedy and the Race ...

This year is replete with historic 50th anniversaries for space exploration, including the flights of Yuri Gagarin as the first human in space in April and, a few weeks later, Alan Shepard as the first American in space.

Feb 28 2011 | Read Full Review of John F. Kennedy and the Race ...

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