ORIGINS OF THE USAF SPACE PROGRAM 1945-1956
Before long, someone will start on the construction of a satellite vehicle, whether in the United States or elsewhere. History shows that the human race does not allow physical development to lag very far behind the mental realization that a step can be taken. This is particularly true of progress which has a direct bearing on man's conquest of his environment...
Since the United States is far ahead of any other country in both airplanes and sea power, and since others are abreast of the United States in rocket applications, we can expect strong competition in the latter field as being the quickest shortcut for challenging this country's position. No promising avenues of progress in rockets can be neglected by the United States without great danger of falling behind in the world race for armaments.
RAND Report RA-15032
"Reference Papers Relating
to a Satellite Study,"
1 February 1947
The type of pyramidal totalitarian regime that the Communists have centered in Moscow . . is not adapted for effective performance in pioneering fields, either in basic science or in involved and novel applications . . . Hence it is likely to produce great mistakes and great abortions.
No other nation will have the atomic bomb tomorrow, .....
It [the ballistic missile] would never stand the test of cost analysis. If we employed it in quantity, we would be economically exhausted long before the enemy.
and Free Men,