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If they didn’t return from the moon

If they didn’t return from the moon

We all remembered this weekend the moon landing, upon news of Neil Armstrong’s death.

What we didn’t focus on is what would have happened if Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were stranded.

Rush just read this speech written by William Safire for Richard Nixon in the event the men would not return:

Fate has ordained that the men who went to the moon to explore in peace will stay on the moon to rest in peace.

These brave men, Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin, know that there is no hope for their recovery. But they also know that there is hope for mankind in their sacrifice.

These two men are laying down their lives in mankind’s most noble goal: the search for truth and understanding.

They will be mourned by their families and friends; they will be mourned by their nation; they will be mourned by the people of the world; they will be mourned by a Mother Earth that dared send two of her sons into the unknown.

In their exploration, they stirred the people of the world to feel as one; in their sacrifice, they bind more tightly the brotherhood of man.

In ancient days, men looked at stars and saw their heroes in the constellations. In modern times, we do much the same, but our heroes are epic men of flesh and blood.

Others will follow, and surely find their way home. Man’s search will not be denied. But these men were the first, and they will remain the foremost in our hearts.

For every human being who looks up at the moon in the nights to come will know that there is some corner of another world that is forever mankind.

Audio of Safire discussing the speech is available here.

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Comments

It’s always interesting to be able to look back and see what the contingency plans were if something were to have gone differently than it did.

With a national venture as important to the American Psyche as the first Moon landing it would have been even more important to have a contingency speech in hand to reassure the public that even though the US had lost great heroes, that all was not lost for naught, but in the pursuit of knowledge.

http://ricochet.com/main-feed/How-to-Step-Away

That is a very worthwhile read. Take a few minutes.

Can you imagine if it was written for Obama? —

“The good news is, I’m perfectly okay.”

    LukeHandCool in reply to TheFineReport.com. | August 27, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    Heh heh!

    “I directed the astronauts …” would’ve become “NASA directed the astronauts …”

    “At my direction …” would’ve become “At NASA’s direction …”

    Apollo 13 showed the ever-present danger after so many successes made it all look so easy.

    Makes one think of Eisenhower’s prepared words in case D-Day was a failure. The stark contrast with Obama’s ways makes it seem so foreign and other:

    “Our landings have failed and I have withdrawn the troops. My decision to attack at this time and place was based on the best information available. The troops, the air and the Navy did all that bravery could do. If any blame or fault attaches to the attempt it is mine alone.”

      CalMark in reply to LukeHandCool. | August 27, 2012 at 1:50 pm

      Your Ike reference was the first thing that occurred to me, too.

      For Eisenhower, the consequences would have been personally dire, as well: transferred home in disgrace, to retire as a colonel, his “permanent rank.” All those stars were “temporary” wartime ranks, not becoming permanent until 1946.

      Come what may, I doubt The One would bear similar consequences for his actions.

      TrooperJohnSmith in reply to LukeHandCool. | August 27, 2012 at 5:32 pm

      Let’s not forget AS-204, renamed Apollo 1. in honor of Lt. Col. Virgil I. “Gus” Grissom, Lt. Col. Edward H. White, and Roger B. Chaffee who perished in a fire that was wholly avoidable. These men were sealed into a capsule that was an accident waiting to happen, and they knew it. It was as much a failure of caution and leadership as it was a national tragedy. Hubris the Greeks called it.

        They were explorers and brave men. You’d never get me up in a spacecraft.

        The engineers and scientists created unbelievably good equipment. And everyone understood the risks.

        It’s too bad NASA went PC. They killed one mom (Christa McAuliffe) and another woman in ’86. Then they killed another mom (Laurel Clark) and another woman in 2003. Once was bad enough, but twice?!

        Now NASA works on Muslim outreach. Sick.

          counsel4pay in reply to JerryB. | August 27, 2012 at 10:23 pm

          JerryB, your comment is correct, and deserves a little expansion: Let’s look at some more facts and a source:

          Here’s what the former head of NASA said “THE WON” asked:

          “Bolden created a firestorm after telling Al Jazeera last month that President Obama told him before he took the job that he wanted him to do three things: inspire children to learn math and science, expand international relationships and “perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science … and math and engineering.”

          Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/07/06/nasa-official-walks-claim-muslim-outreach-foremost-mission/#ixzz24nsdRZA6

        counsel4pay in reply to TrooperJohnSmith. | August 27, 2012 at 10:27 pm

        I read a deeply moving article about this which explored how “can do” became “can’t fail”–and accidents did happen. We lost such good men and women. I am only comforted by my faith that their courage and patriotism have earned them peace with Deity forever. [From your name, I wonder if you, too, might have a “few stories to tell” about freedom and patriotism. I suspect so. God bless.]

    Cassandra Lite in reply to TheFineReport.com. | August 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm

    It would be hilarious if it weren’t so terrifyingly sad that it’s impossible to imagine Obama saying words like this. I’d love to lay eyes on what his own speechwriters wrote as a worst-case in the Bin Laden raid: “As you know, my predecessor…”

9thDistrictNeighbor | August 27, 2012 at 12:59 pm

This much is true:

“In ancient days, men looked at stars and saw their heroes in the constellations. In modern times, we do much the same, but our heroes are epic men of flesh and blood.

Others will follow, and surely find their way home. Man’s search will not be denied. But these men were the first, and they will remain the foremost in our hearts.

For every human being who looks up at the moon in the nights to come will know that there is some corner of another world that is forever mankind.”

^^^”perfectly OK” LOL Thats the funniest thing Ive read in a week.
Im perfectly OK and need campaign cash fast or it will be your faults if we dont go back.

Not to drift off topic but we can see here how Obama views Armstrong’s passing…with a pic of himself

http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/149576/

It was a privilege to go to the moon. But Armstrong absolutely knew the risks of what he was doing, knew how easily something could go wrong and performed his mission with bravery and competency. And after he returned, he acted with grace and class. Armstrong was a hero in every sense of that word.

Maybe Obama can share with the American people the thrill of watching the Apollo moon landing on Indonesian television.
In between his mother denouncing the United States and saying Americans were not her people.

Funny how it is always about him.

quiksilverz24 | August 27, 2012 at 1:56 pm

Anyone know why Obama didn’t direct flags to be flown at half mast for the loss of an American hero?

Or does Obama not have time for a dissenter of his space policy?

[…] speech writer, William Safire wrote a short speech.  Legal Insurrection posted it. I’ll post it here. Fate has ordained that the men who went to the moon to explore in peace […]

Remember that the LEM was an experimental aircraft that could not be tested – we weren’t positive what the surface of the moon would be like, and there was no way to try and fly in 1/6 gravity except to go to the moon. So the Eagle was the highest-profile test flight ever.

To save weight, it was a thin-skinned vehicle just barely big enough for Armstrong and Aldrin to stand up together inside. Fuel was calculated down to the ounce, and there was almost no margin for error at all – had Aldrin used just a touch too much in setting her down, they would not have had enough fuel to escape the moon’s gravity, and Collins would be riding home alone.

[…] speech writer, William Safire,  gave voice to the unspeakable,  via William A. Jacobson, Legal Insurrection: Fate has ordained that the men who went to the moon to explore in peace will stay on the moon to […]

Buzz Adrin did something on the moon that was not transmitted publicly that July day in 1969 and just recently was placed on Youtube.
Enjoy this 2 minutes of real American heroes!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5zEZvPg1itw

The Drill SGT | August 27, 2012 at 3:51 pm

I think a number of us thought of Ike’s speech.

As for the LEM, the outer skin was effectively extra heavy duty aluminum foil

As for the LEM, the outer skin was effectively extra heavy duty aluminum foil

Which is substantially thicker than Obama’s outer skin…

But we who feel the weight of the wheel,
when winter falls over our world,
can hope for tomorrow and raise our eyes
to a silver moon in the open skies,
and a single flag unfurled.
For the Eagle has landed,
tell your children when
time won’t drive us down to dust again.

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