Next Step or No Step by Paul D. Spudis
Mars First advocates worry about getting “stuck on the Moon.” In fact, it is their obsession for Mars that has kept us in low Earth orbit for the last 40 years. By relentlessly pushing for a space goal that is well out of our technical and fiscal reach, they have gotten an undesired (but not unexpected) result: stasis. There is no choice. You use the Moon or you get nothing. Right now, Mars is a bridge too far – we need the stepping-stone of our Moon to reach it.