Scientific Cooperation with the Soviet Union

November 13, 1963

Report Outline
Difficult Path to Scientific Cooperation
Beginnings of Cooperation a Decade Ago
Areas of Current Scientific Cooperation
Plans for World Scientific Cooperation

Difficult Path to Scientific Cooperation

Moon Project Proposal and Soviet Rejection

President Kennedy's proposal to convert the race to the moon into a joint lunar expedition of American astronauts and Soviet cosmonauts, advanced in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly on September 20, aroused little enthusiasm in this country and was met in Russia at first only by silence. More than a month passed before Soviet Premier Khrushchev told newspaper correspondents, Oct. 26, that “We are not at present planning flights by cosmonauts to the moon.” Khrushchev wished the Americans success and added that “We shall take their experience into account.” Initial assumptions that Russia was abandoning aspirations to make a moon landing proved over-hasty. However, there seemed no doubt that the Premier's statement signified rejection of the Kennedy proposal.

Advocacy of Cooperation; Khrushchev's Conditions

The President had said in his address to the General Assembly three days after it convened for its 18th regular session:

Space offers no problem of sovereignty; by resolution of this Assembly, the members of the United Nations have foresworn any claims to territorial rights in outer space or on celestial bodies, and declared that international law and the U.N. Charter will apply. Why, therefore, should man's first flight to the moon be a matter of national competition? … Surely we should explore whether the scientists and astronauts of our two countries—indeed, of all the world—cannot work together in the conquest of space, sending some day in this decade to the moon, not the representatives of a single nation, but the representatives of all humanity.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
U.S.-Soviet Relations
Sep. 14, 1990  The Western Alliance After the Cold War
Feb. 10, 1989  Soviet Trade: In America's Best Interest?
Nov. 01, 1985  U.S.-Soviet Summitry
Jul. 09, 1982  Controlling Scientific Information
May 25, 1973  Trends in U.S.-Soviet Relations
Apr. 05, 1972  Russia's Diplomatic Offensive
Feb. 09, 1972  Trading with Communist Nations
Mar. 10, 1971  Indian Ocean Policy
Apr. 21, 1965  Negotiations with Communists
Nov. 13, 1963  Scientific Cooperation with the Soviet Union
Oct. 03, 1963  Trade with the Communists
Sep. 11, 1963  Non-Aggression Pacts and Surprise Attack
Oct. 11, 1961  East-West Negotiations
Mar. 29, 1961  Russia and United Nations
Aug. 10, 1960  Challenged Monroe Doctrine
Sep. 02, 1959  American-Soviet Trade
Jul. 03, 1959  Cultural Exchanges with Soviet Russia
Aug. 11, 1958  Conference Diplomacy
Jul. 23, 1958  Limited War
May 14, 1958  Cold War Propaganda
Feb. 26, 1958  Military Disengagement
Feb. 20, 1957  Indirect Aggression
Jul. 25, 1956  Trading with Communists
Jan. 11, 1956  Economic Cold War
Nov. 26, 1954  Peaceful Coexistence
Dec. 01, 1953  Tests of Allied Unity
Sep. 18, 1953  Negotiating with the Reds
Jun. 17, 1953  East-West Trade
Apr. 12, 1951  Non-Military Weapons in Cold-War Offensive
Apr. 20, 1949  Mediterranean Pact and Near East Security
Apr. 28, 1948  Trade with Russia
Sep. 11, 1946  Loyalty in Government
Jul. 31, 1946  Arctic Defenses
Apr. 01, 1943  American and British Relations with Russia
Feb. 24, 1933  Soviet-American Political and Trade Relations
Nov. 03, 1931  Russian-American Relations
Feb. 14, 1924  Russian Trade with the United States
Regional Political Affairs: Russia and the Former Soviet Union
Science and Politics
U.S. at War: Cold War