The cooperation that occurred between the United States and the Soviet Union was also named the Apollo- Soyuz Test Project (ASTP). The ASTP was not only a contribution towards dÃÂ©tente, but also towards the development of a universal, androgynous docking system, the United States and the Soviet Union jointly developed and conduced flight where the U.S. Apollo spacecraft, carrying a special docking module, rendezvoused and docked with a modified Soviet Soyuz. Soyuz 19 was sent up from Tiuratam in the Kazakh Republic of the U.S.S.R, with two cosmonauts on board: Colonel Alexei Arkhipoivh Leonov and Valerii Nikolaievich Kubasov.
On July 17, 1975, Apollo and Soyuz docked in orbit 225 kilometers above the Earth, and for 2 days the crews paid exchange visits and conducted five joint experiments. Live television coverage of the even was broadcast to millions of people around the world with enthusiastic commentaries and dramatic pictures. The cosmonauts and astronauts on board emphasized he ASTP's importance as a symbol of the peaceful intentions of both countries.
And on an official level, the hope was expressed that ASTP would lead to wider and more extensive U.S. - Soviet cooperation in the future. BreAfter landing the Apollo-Soyuz spacecraft, L. 1. Bezhnev stated:
A relaxation of tensions and improvements in Soviet-American relations have created the conditions for carrying out the first international space flight. They are opening new possibilities for wide, fruitful development of scientific links between countries and peoples in the interests of peace and progress of all mankind. [Soviet leader - Leonid Brezhnev]
Essentially, Brezhney is saying that ASTP was basically the final closure upon reaching dÃÂ©tente, but such an event could not have been possible without all of the previous cooperative actions.
Although most people had an enthusiastic response over the success of ASTP, many observers began to...