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Jim Root

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The timming of the launch of the TIROS I Satellite on April 1, 1960 and the downing ot Francis Gary Powers on May 1, 1960 has intrigued me for many years.

Were the two events connected? If they were connected, the defection of Lee Harvey Oswald to Russia in October of 1959 and any information he may have provided the Soviets could place Oswald at the center of a highly classified intelligence operation dealing with the WS117L Program.

The Army Ballistic Missile Agency (ABMA) was an organization formed by the United States Army on February 1, 1956 (While Maxwell Taylor was Chief of Staff of the Army), at Redstone Arsenal, Huntsville, Alabama, taking over what was previously the Guided Missile Development Division, to develop the Redstone and Jupiter ballistic missiles. Its first commander was Major General John Mendaris. In July 1960 ABMA’s buildings and staff, including Wernher von Braun, were transferred to NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, which remains in the midst of the Redstone Arsenal.

The transfer of ABMA to NASA was one of the many disappoinments that led to Maxwell Taylor's distaste of the Eisenhower Administration.

Tiros I was built by the Army, and launched by an Army Redstone Missle for a, supposedly civilian project (I cannot accept this point).

In a local publication printed in Kerr County, Texas (Edwin Walker's home) in 1958 it states that Walker is working with "guided missiles." Nohing in Walker's military record supports this although the Arkansas Military District (integration of schools in Little Rock) where Walker was stationed at the time and the Redstone Arsenal are in close proximity.








Jim Root

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