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Human beings have dreamed of exploring space for centuries, but the realization of that vision in the 20th century had its roots in military thinking. From the rocket technologies developed in Germany during World War II to the use of satellite imagery and communications during the Global War on Terrorism, space exploration and the military have repeatedly intertwined. This entry discusses the links between the U.S. military and technological innovations related to the space program.

These connections began early in the Cold War. After 1945, the Soviet Union and United States vied for the services of German scientists and engineers who had developed V-2 rockets for the Nazis during World War II. The Americans successfully lured Wernher von Braun and others to come to the ...

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