The British Interplanetary Society - Val Cleaver and Wernher von Braun

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I.P. Willhite (2001), JBIS, 54, 291-299

Refcode: 2001.54.291
Keywords: Wernher von Braun, Val Cleaver, British Interplanetary Society, astronautics, science.

This article is concerned with the early relationship between Wernher von Braun and the British Interplanetary Society (BIS). The BIS/Wernher von Braun/Val Cleaver correspondence files located here at the US Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama are unparalleled. As one reads the stimulating comments between Cleaver and von Braun, the need to share their thoughts prevails. Following is an excerpt from one letter that whets ones appetite for more. 10 June 1951 Cleaver writes, “I'm so glad you enjoyed my last letter, and look forward to your promised further contribution to our discussion of the ethics of science in general and astronautics in particu- lar. As regards the one particular point on which you found yourself unable to hold your fire, I should say there are really two distinct issues at stake:. . .” This article attempts to represent the best of the letters as they goad each other on scientific principles, means to prevent wars, and other philosophic ideas.

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