LET me take you back to 1960. It is three years after the launch of Sputnik 1 and Manoug Manougian is a young mathematics and physics lecturer at Haigazian College in Beirut, Lebanon, with a fascination for rocketry. At a time when the global focus was on space exploration, 25-year-old Manougian decided to harness this excitement to teach science and mathematics. Gathering together a group of like-minded students, he formed a small rocketry society and began to experiment with solid rocket fuels at a farm belonging to the family of one of the students. […] Yet the project disbanded in 1966 and has since slipped into obscurity. Perhaps scuppered by the international conflicts that affected the region at the time, or drowned out by the successes and failures of the Soviet and US endeavours, the Lebanese Rocket Society and its work was consigned to a few little-read history books.