We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.
Many years ago the great British explorer George Mallory, who was to die on Mount Everest, was asked why did he want to climb it. He said, "Because it is there."
Well, space is there, and we're going to climb it, and the moon and the planets are there, and new hopes for knowledge and peace are there. And, therefore, as we set sail we ask God's blessing on the most hazardous and dangerous and greatest adventure on which man has ever embarked.
American President John F. Kennedy spoke these words at Rice University on 12 September 1962, igniting an American drive to the Moon. The goal was achieved when just under seven years later, American astronaut Neil Armstrong became the first Human to step foot on the surface of the Moon on 20 July 1969. It was one of the greatest achievements of the 20th century.
What does it have to do with Wing Commander? The second part of Kennedy’s speech that is quoted above is heard at the very beginning of the introduction to the Wing Commander movie. The Terran Confederation faced an ominous threat at the time from the Kilrathi in the greatest war that Humanity had ever fought. Kilrathi forces had acquired a NavComAI and were using it to drive directly into the Sol system in 2654. Only with tremendous effort were Confederation forces able to stop the Kilrathi offensive. It instead became an ambush by Confederation forces that was not soon rivaled.