The Cuban government announced today that, beginning January 13, 2013, it will allow its citizens to freely visit other countries for the first time in over a half century.
This quiet announcement reminds me of what happened in East Germany in 1991. The government then made a quiet announcement saying it would allow travel outside its country, and within days the Berlin Wall was literally being torn down by its citizens. Shortly thereafter East Germany ceased to exist, absorbed into Germany itself, and the communist bloc fell apart.
Hopefully, we shall see the same thing happen to the Cuban dictatorship.
From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.
The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.
He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.
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