Collaboration: An American trait -- guest post by Cord Sterling, Vice President, Lockheed Martin
Since America answered the call to defeat fascism in World War II, industry has been a key partner in delivering to our forces the tools they need to achieve victory.
As we reflect on the 50th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing, let’s also reflect on the fortune we have to live in a country that takes on such significant challenges, that drives mankind forward in a quest to do more and become better than anyone would think possible.
From World War II to the moon landing to now, we’ve realized success by the thousands of people in the military, government and private sector who gave their time -- and some their lives -- to explore new technologies and techniques that had never been thought of before.
In 1947, when Bernard Baruch first recognized the conflict between the United States and the Soviet Union, it merely put a name on a decades-long competition between freedom and totalitarianism. This competition took on many forms, but the most significant was the development of advanced technologies that drove progress on the military capabilities and economic prosperity. No one can dispute that freedom emerged the winner in no small part as a result of the advanced computing, communications and airpower developed by the men and women in industry for the space race and the cold war.
When the Department of Defense recognized, as part of the 2018 National Defense Strategy, that inter-state strategic competition with China and Russia has become the primary concern in U.S. national security, it turned to industry to close the gap with these competitors in technologies such as hypersonics, directed energy and artificial intelligence. It has also charged industry to help it focus on its modernization priorities including space, cyber and missile defense.
During the past 100 years, whether it was victory in WWII, the Space Race or the Cold War, the men and women in the American aerospace and defense industry have met the challenges put before them to deliver advanced capabilities to meet our nation’s needs. Capabilities that once were used to defend freedom are now used to spread its message to all people around the world. When told to solve a problem, this is industry delivers results.