The Space Race

Who can place a man on the moon first?

What was the Space Race?

The Space Race, as it was called, was a figurative, technological battle between the Soviet Union and the United States to see who was able to plant a man on the moon first. Stretching over about a decade, both rivals went to great lengths and allotted many monetary resources to the Space Race, in hopes of achieving this great feat.

Major Events of the Space Race

Oct. 4, 1957 - The Soviet Union launches Sputnik, the first satellite to ever make it into orbit. The United States (validly) feared that if the USSR was able to send a satellite into space, then they could sure also fire missiles at the US.

Nov. 3, 1957 - The USSR launches Sputnik II, which successfully carried a small dog (Laika) into space. this mission made Laika the first organism from Earth to ever make it into orbit.

Jan. 31, 1958 - The United States launches "their own Sputnik," called Explorer, in retaliation to the Soviets' launch in the previous year.

Oct. 1, 1958 - The (US) National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is founded. We see this organization lead America through the Space Race in years to come.

Jan. 2, 1959 - Luna is launched by the USSR, and becomes the first ever man-made object to fall into solar orbit.

Sep. 12, 1959 - The USSR's Luna 2 is launched and goes on to become the first man-made object to ever impact the moon,

Nov. 8, 1960 - John F. Kennedy is elected President. Space exploration is something we will see him asset many financial resources towards over the duration of his Presidency.

Apr. 12, 1961 - Soviet Yuri Gagarin becomes the first ever person in space, and orbits the Earth once.

Nov. 22, 1963 - President Kennedy is assassinated.

Mar. 18, 1965 - Soviet Alexei Leonov becomes the first ever person to engage in a space walk, spending 12 minutes outside of his craft.

Feb. 3, 1966 - The USSR's Luna 9 becomes the first spacecraft to successfully "soft-land" on the Moon.

Apr. 3, 1966 - Soviet Luna 10 becomes the first craft in lunar orbit.

Jul. 20, 1969 - Americans Neil Armstrong and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin become the first ever humans successfully on the Moon. Armstrong is noted making the memorial quote as he took the first ever step on the Moon, "[This is] one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind."

Major Events of the Cold War

Jan. 1946 - First ever Eastern European Communist government is established in Albania.

Jan. 1947 - Communists seize power in Poland.

Mar. 1947 - The Truman Doctrine, legislation that called for the granting of monetary resources to European countries both for post-WWII reconstruction and to fund opposition to Communism.

Jun. 1948 - The Berlin Airlift begins ensuing the closing off of transportation methods between West Germany and West Berlin.

Feb. 1959 - Fidel Castro becomes Premier of Cuba, and there establishes a Communist government.

Apr. 1961 - The US unsuccessfully sends Cuban immigrants back to Cuba with the hope of usurping Castro.

Aug. 1961 - East Germany constructs the Berlin Wall.

Oct. 1962 - The Cuban Missile Crisis occurs.

Dec. 1989 - The Berlin Wall is torn down with help from the United States.

The connection between the two...

As we can see, there are many similarities that occurred in terms of the progression of the Space Race and the progression of the Cold War. For example, both were spurred due to actions the Soviet Union perpetrated and occurred when the US responded. We also find that in both of these "conflicts," the USSR leads and the US follows, we have more dictation regarding to the progression of both of these events on the Soviet side.