Share
Explore BrainMass

The Space Race and The US Role in WW2 Reconstruction

How did Sputnik change the military and political landscape in the US?

Why did the US contribute to Germany's and Japan's reindustrializations?

Solution Preview

Dear Student,
Hereis your solution. To fully understand the Sputnik role, I encourage you to visit the web resources/references I listed. As for the the US role in post WW2 reconstruction of Japan & Germany, I focused on a discussion instead of pointing out key economic treaties as you would need more a guidance on the discussion behind the American Role as it was a point of debate that lead to the Cold War. For more particular details on the Reconstruction of Japan & Germany, the references I listed will help. Attached is a word version, print it out as your guide.

OTA 105878

----------------------------------

Sputnik & the Escalation of the Arms Race (Race for Space)

October 4, 1957 is considered to be the dawn of the Space Age. Under the Secretive ministrations of the Russian Government and their Science & Development arm, they successfully launched Sputnik, the world's first artificial satellite, which oddly enough was just about the size of a beach ball. At 58 cm or 22.8 inches in diameter, it only weighed 83.6 kg or 183.9 pounds and took about 98 minutes to orbit the Earth. A singular event nonetheless, it took the U.S. by surprise. Back in 1952 the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU) worked out that between July 1957 and December 1958, the cycles of Solar activity would be at it's high point. Hence, they established this time period as the International Geophysical Year (IGY) & announced the resolution encouraging members to launch artificial satellites.

The U.S. on cue announced it's participation and combed it's research bodies & Federal agencies to establish a team that would make it happen, each agency encourage to send a proposal. September 1955 saw the Naval Research Laboratory's Vanguard proposal best every other proposal to represent the U.S.'s IGY entry. The USSR announced an entry but did not elaborate much on it's specifics. They were working overtime to make sure that theirs got into space before that of the Americas. So on that fateful day of the Sputnik's successful launch, the U.S. was surprised at the Sputnik's successful launch, then hailed by scientists the world over. Vanguard's planned payload was no more than 3.5 kg, compared to the 83.6 kg that the Sputnik weighed. By December of the same year, Sputnik II was successfully launched into space with a much heavier payload and the first living mammal , Laika the dog. These Soviet successes worried the Americans especially those in Defense. The possibility of creating ballistic missiles than can carry nuclear weapons is very real for the Soviets, and the U.S. was not yet in that position. Overtime the IGY event was not just a scientific contest & inquiry anymore, it has become the Space Age segment of the Arms Race. Whoever ruled the scientific advancement in Space in all probability has the better technology in the arms race, with far ...

Solution Summary

The Solution looks at the American Experience since 1945 focusing on how Sputnik's successful launch fueled the US's furious efforts at gaining dominance in the Space Race as another venue for the Cold War, eventually creating NASA & engineering the successful Apollo Moon Landing.

It also looks at the role played by the US particularly in the reconstruction of former axis nations Germany & Japan,focusing on the particular US policies that allowed for the industrialisation of said nations to become the leading economic powers they are today.

$2.19