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1960s Middle Eastern Manned Spacecraft projects?

trekkist

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I'm working on an alternate history featuring use of various unbuilt 60s projects--MUSTARD, Dassault's space taxi, Nord-Aviation’s Minstral, etc. I'd like to include one or more projects of Middle Eastern origin, but I'm unfamiliar with any such.

Any information and/or illustrations, including those of "unofficial" projects (or even technically credible sf illustrations of Middle Eastern origin and/or assignation) are welcome also...with, if possible, citations of artists/engineers involved.

David Winfrey
 

starviking

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A bit beyond your timescale, but Libya was involved in the West German OTRAG rocket programme in the 70s and 80s, but just as a launch site. That indicates one of the problems of having a Middle Eastern nation as a project initiator: low technical capability.

I could see potential projects being suggested as a way of trying alliances together. Perhaps Nasser's United Arab Republic lasts longer, and proposes a joint project with the Soviet Union as a symbol of their undying friendship?
 

dan_inbox

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Something like the Israeli Shavit II rocket, publicly launched 1961-07-05 ?
 

antigravite

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Hi. In the late 1950s or early 1960s, a tiny picture of an "egyptian cosmonaut trainee" in what appeared to be a spacesuit circulated in the West in monthly popular science publications such as "Science & Vie" (France). It always intrigued me. Years later, I leant that about same time, an egyptian scf-fi movie had been released ("Rehla ilal kamar" -1959) dealing with a man in the moon. Some old projects representations might be confused with / by this old sci-fi movie or any others that I am not aware of (not my area of expertise).

A.
 

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overscan

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I'd try this book for some ideas:


Egypt established a Space Agency in 1960 but didn't do much with it. Eugen Sanger moved to Egypt along with a number of other German engineers and Egypt invested in developing fighters, engines and rockets without much success. An alternate timeline where Nasser's 'United Arab Republic' discovers some source of large quantities of money (Saudi Arabia falls to a popular uprising and then joins the United Arab Republic bringing vast oil wealth?) and invests in a Space program is the most likely scenario to my mind.
 
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dan_inbox

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Egypt established a Space Agency in 1960 but didn't do much with it. Eugen Sanger moved to Egypt along with a number of other German engineers and Egypt invested in developing fighters, engines and rockets without much success.
As I recall it, Nasser's goal for the rocketry effort was to lob dirty radioactive stuff onto Tel Aviv.
And, the Mossad wasn't a big fan and ran a rather successful campaign of eliminating all those Nazis who wanted to continue murdering Jews.

An alternate timeline where Nasser's 'United Arab Republic' discovers some source of large quantities of money (Saudi Arabia falls to a popular uprising and then joins the United Arab Republic bringing vast oil wealth?) and invests in a Space program is the most likely scenario to my mind.
Given Nasser's track record in management (in mismanagement, in fact), he'd be much more likely to spend it on military ventures abroad. Things like his failed expeditionary corps in Yemen, sponsoring terrorism in then-French Algeria or elsewhere, that kind of stuff. Which does nothing for his people but boosts his own prestige.

It is very sad that in many parts of the world, the politicians who have the charisma to get to the top and energize crowds (which Nasser had in spades), very consistently turn out to lack the basic management skills to act for the good and properity of the country. (Nelson Mandela being a shining exception)
 

martinbayer

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Looking at what's happening globally today, I think the main problem in political leadership is not so much well-meaning ineptitude (i.e. a basic, if potentially misguided, altruistic motivation), but overriding blatant, unscrupulous, and potentially even psychopathical self interest of a whole crop of present political leaders around the world.
 
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