I lived through much of the so-called 'space race' and can remember a few of the moon landings. However, I really wasn't aware of the American MOL (Manned Orbiting Laboratory) or Soviet ALMAZ---two orbiting spy systems that are a bit frightening yet fascinating when you learn about them. My question about all of this, however, is who authorized folks to actually talk with "Nova" about this, as it was clearly Ultra-Top Secret!
Back in the late 50s and early 60s, surveillance of each other's nuclear weapons was super-important to the USA and USSR. While U-2 and similar Russian planes were beneficial, they weren't enough and simultaneously, both countries began work on a manned space-based surveillance system. So, while we watched astronauts and cosmonauts on TV, there were MORE out there training for these amazing missions. When you watch this show, you'll learn exactly what happened to the programs and well as the secrecy surrounding them.
All in all, a very interesting film--one of the most surprising "Nova" episodes I have ever seen. Well worth seeing--particularly if you're old enough to remember the Cold War.
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