Credit: CIA

On October 4, 1957, the Soviet Union successfully launched the Sputnik-1 earth satellite into space—an achievement that stunned the American public and press, but not the U.S. policy and intelligence communities.

The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) reported the advancements that led to this landmark launch to President Eisenhower, providing him with the strategic advantage to guide the U.S. response.

Intelligence and analysis

On the 60th anniversary of Sputnik’s first launch, the CIA has released a collection of previously classified documents on the Sputnik program.

Credit: S.P. Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation/Energia

The collection includes CIA’s intelligence and analysis of Sputniks-1, -2, and -3 and the Soviet ballistic missile program from 1955 to the early 1960s.




Encompassing 59 documents and 440 pages, the release provides new information to the public, to include memoranda and reports the CIA provided to President Eisenhower, on the Soviet Union’s early space and missile programs.


The entire collection is available here:


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