China’s interest in outer space needs to be embraced by the United States: editorial
When an unmanned spacecraft touched down on the moon last month, China became the third country – after the United States and Russia – to achieve a soft landing on the lunar surface.
Meanwhile, millions of Americans uttered a collective,
Most of us, until recently, may well have been unaware of China’s
growing interest in moon exploration, or of its other forays into space.
Which brings us to the question: What is China up to?
Michael Krepon, director of South Asia and space security programs at
the nonpartisan Stimson Center think tank, also sees China’s space
goals as a point of pride and cohesion. It sends a message to the
Chinese people that their nation can compete with the likes of the
United States and Russia.
But there’s a potentially ominous aspect to China’s space goals: The
enhancement of its military might. And that’s where the United States
must be vigilant.
Krepon doubts that moon exploration would play a direct role in any
confrontation. Concerns that the moon could become a staging area for
weapons have been discounted by advances in cheaper and more easily
accessible mischief-making technology on and near Earth.
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