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Bush makes no space policy announcement at Kitty Hawk
Posted: Wed, Dec 17, 2003, 12:59 PM ET (1759 GMT)
President Bush at Columbia memorial service (White House) US President George W. Bush failed to announce a new national space policy or any other new direction for NASA during a speech Wednesday at an event commemorating the centennial of the Wright Brothers' first powered flight. Bush, speaking for less than 15 minutes during rain-soaked ceremonies in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, made only broad, general references to aviation and space policy during his speech. "By our skill and daring, America has excelled in every area of aviation and space travel," he said near the end of his address. "And our national commitment remains firm: By our skill and daring, we will continue to lead the world in flight." Some observers had expected Bush to announce a new national space policy, including a possible return to the Moon or human missions to Mars, during the speech, although White House officials said two weeks earlier that no such announcement was planned. John Travolta, the actor and pilot who served as the master of ceremonies for Wednesday's event, voice his support for the possibility of permanent human settlements on the Moon during his opening remarks, and jokingly volunteered to Bush to be on the first mission back to the Moon. Bush replied by bestowing the nickname "Moon Man" on Travolta.
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