Wernher von Braun: as the SS officer led the United States into space

22/03/20 biography Wernher von Braun: as the SS officer led the United States into space

Werner von Braun with his life he proved that genius and evil – things are compatible. The rank of an SS officer, he worked to create “weapons of retaliation” of the Third Reich, starred in Disney and put a man on the moon.

kid stuff

a Passion for science of Werner, who was born in March 1912, he awakened early. When von Braun was 13 years old, after confirmation, his mother gave him a telescope. Since that time his dream was the conquest of the moon. Father Werner was the Minister of agriculture of the Weimar Republic, the boy received a good education and could afford more than his peers. The life of Werner stood on their own, find themselves historical, the way when he learned about the successful development of rocket engines, was the compatriots Valier and Opel. Von Braun literally came up with the idea to create a rocket engine. Decided to start with the flares, went to Berlin and bought a half-dozen firecrackers. He tied them to a small van and drove to one of the main streets in Berlin — Tiergarten to the Alley. Obviously, he wanted publicity of his first “scientific” experiment. Miraculously no one was hurt, although this had all the chances: the van accelerated to high speed, spewing flames from the rockets. Werner was immediately arrested by the police, but, owing to the high position of the father in society, he was soon released. At that time nobody could have guessed that this boy would be the “father of the American space program and NASA”.

bounty Hunting

Production of the German “weapons of vengeance” for a long time remained a mystery for the world’s intelligence. In 1943 the French, was established the secret service “Marco Polo”, which was engaged in the exploration of high technologies of the Third Reich and passed the collected information, the US and the UK. Since that time the “headhunting” became for the allied Razvedo the priority.

In November 1944, the joint chiefs of staff has established a “Committee of industrial and technical intelligence.” The office of strategic services in the framework of a secret operation Overcast was engaged in the export of German rocket scientists to work in the United States. Most “cherished head” was for the Americans von Braun. His discovery of the secret services led the list of 1500 scientists found in the toilet of a bombed Cologne University. Werner von Braun standing in the list in the first place. As it turned out, the decision to surrender to the Americans was made by a team of scientists long before there was a historical event. Von Braun was even placed under arrest for saying “defeatist” views.

Long operation Overcast to keep it secret failed. She was known to the American media and once called the program “the importation of Nazi war criminals”. To avoid publicity in March 1946, the operation was renamed Paperclip and the German scientists were listed on documents as “victims of Nazism”.

the First test

First tests of the “V-2” in the United States was marked by several disasters and almost led to an international scandal. The first of the four runs turned out to be successful only one – third. During the fourth failed gyro setting and a huge unguided rocket flew in the opposite direction. According to the instructions, in such situations, it was necessary with the radio signal to pull the plug on the engine, but this time it wasn’t so obvious: highly toxic fuel threatened to spill into the waters of the Rio Grande, which would lead to environmental disaster. In the end, the rocket flew further in the direction of Mexico and crashed into the rocky hillside, leaving him nine-meter depth of the hole. A diplomatic scandal and the war with Mexico was avoided; for ordinary Mexicans the brainchild of von Braun was a “gold mine” for a long time they hunted the sale of “rocket debris”, their weight was comparable with the three “V-2”.

the Seamizares-Dutch

Integration von Braun in the American life was difficult. He knew that with open arms it will be adopted everywhere. On arrival in the States when he accompanied major Hamill traveled by train from Washington to El Paso, he was approached by one of the passengers. Braun had a strong accent and he said he was Swiss, working in the steel industry. It turned out that the passenger himself was frequently in Switzerland, and the production of steel knows firsthand, well, it was time for him to leave. Saying goodbye to brown, the stranger squeezed his hand and said, “If not for you, Swiss, we would hardly be able to win a victory over Germany”.

Von Braun were not easy occurrence in American society. In the documents of the special services he was mentioned under the nickname “the flying Dutchman”. Brown wanted to become, American. He sincerely wanted publicity and fame, taught English and practiced speaking by recording yourself on tape. He has achieved his.

“I look to the stars”

Von Braun, former SS officer, became for US a national hero. Convincingly demonstrated the power of the media, less than a year, American Newspapers did Nazi war criminals Goodfellas immigrants worthy of becoming good Americans. December 9, 1946, the magazine “times” published the first official report on the work of von Braun and his team. In the magazine there were even pictures of the scientist, confidently standing in the Assembly price in the background of their developments. The article ended this way: “They promised that someday they will be able to obtain American citizenship.” The top of the media brown was the release of “I look to the stars” (1960). The film was based on the biography of the scientist, talked about his life from childhood to the control of NASA. Most von Braun, the movie is not like. He did not like and those who once suffered “from the genius” by Wernher von Braun. In London people put up picket lines with demands to cancel screening of the film in Antwerp, which is a painshe suffered from “V-2”, the film was banned.

Brother brown

Not everyone in post-war lives of Werner went smoothly. Once he almost failed his brother. In June 1946 he sold the jeweler from El Paso ingot of platinum, you might say, given for a pittance – $ 100. Your buyer Magnus bran said ingot this brought from Holland by his father-an American. Supposedly, he fought in the First world war in Europe. It does not correspond to reality, brown Sr. first came to the United States only 9 months after the ill-fated deal. Think of a pyramid of lies, Magnus brown did not care about anonymity, called the jeweler your real name and even left a phone number. The jeweler did not think long and said about the queer client authorities. Questioned the mountain of the smuggler, major James Hamill, Magnus immediately confessed that he had brought platinum in the US itself, thereby violating customs laws. However, under the court of Magnus brown never got. Instead, he was subjected to mob violence from his own brother. Learning about the incident, Wernher von Braun personally severely beat his brother, another of which could wipe out all the ambition of “striving for the stars”.

brown and Disney

In 1955, an event occurred that once again proved the luck of von Braun – he met Walt disney, a brilliant Director-animator. Disney was trying to implement a project to build Disneyland, he needed the money, the people, the spectacle, and von Braun – another share of publicity. Product of the synergy of these aspirations have become three films: “Man in space”, “Man and the Moon”, “Mars and others.” Characteristically, Disney has not been able to find the money. His amusement Park was a long-term project that requires constant investment. So he came on TV. In that time it has not been considered seriously as a marketing tool, but Disney signed a contract with “Hey-Bi-si” and not lost. According to conservative estimates broadcast saw more than 100 million viewers. And look at what it was: von Braun interesting to tell about the space, showing the model of the “suit-bottles” for the astronauts and the layout of the lunar station. The President Eisenhower personally called disney and asked for a copy of the film. Tried to get materials of the sensational programs in the Soviet Union: Professor Leonid Sedov turned to Frederick Durant, President of the International Federation of astronauts to get a copy. Given the smoldering Cold war and the anticommunism of Walt Disney – in the USSR, the film is unlikely to hit.

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