By late 1968 NASA officials were ready to let the spacecraft fly at last The initial manned missions tested the Apollo Command Module in Earth orbit and then took it on the journey to the Moon and back

without worrying about TV cameras, so the first live broadcast from space was postponed until later in the flight.

This was only one of several occasions when tensions surfaced between the crew and Mission Control - Schirra called some of the tests he had to carry out "idiotic", while Chris Kraft labelled him "paranoid". Despite all this, the crew completed their major goals, and splashed down on time and on target. In the aftermath, Deke Slayton called the incident "the first space war", and it was no coincidence that the Apollo 7 crew were not selected for further missions.

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