[FPSPACE] Volume 4 now available

E.P. Grondine epgrondine at hotmail.com
Fri Nov 14 19:59:31 EST 2008


Hi - 

Looking back through my files, all that I have on hand is the 1994 version of 
Volume 4 of my History of Cosmonautics, "One Month's Salary", and that version of it 
includes materials from S.I. Afanasyev's [spelling?] initial declassification article, which came well after the first 1990 version. 

As usual, a copy of Volume 4 of my History of Cosmonautics is available to fpspacers by simply writing for one. 

I want to take a few minutes to answer a few more of your questions. All of you public analysts here know what was publicly available by 1989-1990. The first version of Volume 4 was built using what you'd gathered together by 1989-1990 plus the material from "Khrushchev Remembers". Khrushchev's memoirs were the first key for Volume 4. 

The second key for Volume 4 was learning of Jack Anderson's revelation in about 1964 that Soviet radio telephone communications were being intercepted. By examining the US responses, I made an estimate of the Soviet discussions the US officials were listening to, and used that as a guide to organize other material. In this regard I want to share with you a little story. My late uncle, who was one of the four troopers who came back out of the 314 men in his unit who went off to France in WW1, used to sit at the kitchen table and watch the neighbor's house, which was about a half a mile away. One day he told me the neighbors were about to leave for the day, and I asked him how he knew. He told me that he was watching the movement of our neighbor's wife's small maltese dog. 

I would play cards with him and a veteran of the 29th. 

Back to Volume 4. The third key for Volume 4 was the US recon sats' capabilities, again reflected in the decisions the US leaders made.

There were other keys, but...

I really admire the documentary "Moon Shot", and it is "definitive" in many ways, but there are a couple of points I want to mention. It sure would have been nice if the producers of it had of had access to the N1 images and films, and the Soyuz 1 disaster, and the Zond images. Perhaps someday they'll be edited into "Moon Shot", in place of the stock footage they had to use at the time they made it.  

One thing that does kind of get to me in "Moon Shot" is the statement during the Cuban missile crisis segment that rockets were developed to deliver atomic bombs. While that's good enough for the purpose at hand, no, they weren't: atomic bombs weighed too much at first. It was the military uses of nerve gases that drove post war rocket development, mainly because Stalin  developed nerve gases and rockets to counter the US atomic bombs while he was waiting for the Soviet Union to get their own atomic bomb into production. Then when the atomic bombs got lighter, the "missile gap" appeared.

I would hope that some day the people of Russia people will get to see their own version of "Moon Shot". After all, they paid for it, hence the title of Volume 4, "One Month's Salary".
They should know what happened to their money.

For this release, I anglicized some of the Russian names, and translated some of the rockets' and spacecrafts' names, though somehow for me "spacecraft" and "spaceship" lack the essence of the russian word "korabl".

I thank you for your positive comments on the first three volumes, and if any of you know any television people, I am certain that the entire history could be turned into a great documentary, with full re-enactments of the key discussions. Or the whole thing could be footnoted for publication. As usual, all it takes is a big big stack of money...

As for Volume 5 on the shuttles, and Volume 6 on the stations: Once again, this started from my worknotes; the initial sort was not that strong, and I still really am not satisfied with the themes for sorting out the later part of the pile. The file for Volume 6 is corrupted, and I haven't looked yet to see if I still have a back-up of it somewhere. (I am sure I do, but with my stroke I can't remember where I put anything, so it will take a search.) 

I reduced work on the History in 1994 after the rejections of Volume 2 and Volume 3 of it. Other matters had come up then.  So the stations segment does not cover so much since then, in particular the Yeltsin, Zirinovsky, ISS, Putin, etc...  

And then I stopped work on the whole thing around 1997. The proliferation materials were a separate file, and again, if you have a copy of that on three and half inch floppy disk, then you have a collectible, or will have one, most certainly. If you have one, you know it.

They say that history is the stories we tell about ourselves, but I think it is more than that, and that it sort of flows into reporting, journalism.

Volume 7 would probably cover the rise of the reactionary right (neocons) here in the US, the proliferation materials, "The Cult of Mars" that Zubrin's initial in situ scheme evolved into, the rise of attack politics, Walt Anderon's $10 million per year attack via the Space Frontier Foundation on the ISS, etc., the paradigm shift arising from our understanding of the hazard presented by comet and asteroid impacts, and the rise of China's space program. 

The west Africa materials could touch off riots in US cities, but then again that's another separate file.

(Another little aside: I am very impressed by how William Gibson is able to keep three or four threads going at one time in his science fiction novels.)

I want to remind everyone here that personally signed copies of my book "Man and Impact in the Americas" are available to fpspacers at a very special price. Since my stroke, it would really be nice if a major publisher were to pick that up from my shoulders, a publisher with copy editors, graphic artists, production, distribution, etc. Selling foreign language rights for "Man and Impact in the Americas" (especially Spanish language rights, for the Central American and South American markets) would be nice.

Aside from that, I have three "hard" science fiction pieces that I'd like to sell: two treatments for television series, and a short sf "computer crime" detective story. If any of you fpspacers are interested in a 3 hour of free fun light reading sf novel, then write for a copy and it will be on its way.

I hope this answers some of your questions.

E.P. Grondine
Man and Impact in the Americas




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