The Satellite Rocket Vehicle

Political and Psychological Problems

by Paul Kecskemeti

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This paper deals with the probable political effects resulting from the launching of a satellite vehicle under United States auspices, and from its successful use for purposes of military intelligence. The main questions discussed are: How is the satellite program likely to affect the foreign audiences' image of United States capabilities and intent? What influence may it be expected to have on Soviet political behavior? Conclusions include a recommendation of advance publicity rather than secrecy, as well as the launching of a first experimental satellite over the equator prior to launching a second one on an oblique orbit to be used for intelligence purposes. It is argued that this course is likely to minimize the risks inherent in possible Soviet countermeasures.

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