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Visual Evidence

Photo 2: President Kennedy with Strategic Air Commander General Thomas S. Power at Vandenberg Air Force Base, 1962.[Photo 2] with link to larger version of photo.
(U.S. Air Force, History Division)

Vandenberg Air Force Base in California was the main testing/training base for Minuteman Missiles and their operations. President John F. Kennedy visited the base during the early 1960s to show his support for the Minuteman program. It was during Kennedy's term as president that the Minuteman became the United States leading nuclear missile force. He referred to it as his "Ace in the Hole."

Questions for Photo 2

1. Why do you think presidential support was vital to the Minuteman program?

2. What do think President Kennedy meant by his quote that the Minuteman was his "Ace in the Hole?"

* The image on this screen has a resolution of 72 dots per inch (dpi), and therefore will print poorly. You can obtain a larger version of Photo 2, but be aware that the file will take as much as 30 seconds to load with a 28.8K modem.

 

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