Trump Says US Will go to Moon Again, Eventually Mars
President Donald Trump during a ceremony with NASA astronauts (R-L) Christina Koch, Peggy Whitson, Buzz Aldrin, and Jack Schmitt in the Roosevelt Room at the White House on Dec. 11, 2017. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
President Donald Trump signed a directive that will refocus America’s space program on human exploration and discovery.
“It marks an important step in returning American astronauts to the moon for the first time since 1972 for longterm exploration and use,” Trump said at the White House on Dec. 11.
Trump said that manned missions to the moon would “establish a foundation for an eventual mission to Mars and perhaps, someday, to many worlds beyond.”
“This directive will ensure America’s space program once again leads and inspires all of humanity,” Trump said.
Trump was joined by Apollo astronaut Jack Schmitt who landed on the moon in December 1972. The Apollo 17 flight that Schmitt was on marked the last time Americans set foot on the moon.
“Today, we pledge that he will not be the last. And I suspect we’ll be finding other places to land in addition to the moon,” Trump said.
Trump also said that space also has a military application.
Vice President Mike Pence said that the move would “enhance our national security and our capacity to provide for the common defense of the people of the United States of America.”
Former President Barack Obama had put an end to manned spaceflight program Project Constellation.
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