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  #1  
Old Posted Jan 20, 2007, 4:06 PM
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US demands answers on China test

The US has asked China to explain its intentions after Beijing reportedly carried out a weapons test in space last week.
It is thought the Chinese used a ground-based, medium-range ballistic missile to destroy a weather satellite. The US state department said it did not want the "militarisation of space". China's foreign ministry refused to confirm or deny the report but said Beijing was opposed to "any form of arms race".
The test, if confirmed, would be the first known satellite intercept for more than 20 years.

'Satellite-killing'

US state department spokesman Tom Casey said the Bush administration had made clear to China its opposition to such tests. In space programmes, he said "small things can cause very big problems". Mr Casey said the tests could "produce extensive amounts of space debris [that] have the potential for disturbing or accidentally disrupting communications satellites". White House deputy press secretary Dana Perino said the Chinese had not yet responded.

"We do want co-operation on a civil space strategy, so until we hear back from them, I don't have any more to add," she said.
Mr Casey said the US had "no plans or intentions" to engage in space arms tests.
However, Washington has recently opposed international calls to end such tests - and the US is known to be researching such "satellite-killing" weapons.
The BBC's Jonathan Beale, in Washington, says the US has been cautious in its criticism, not least because it wants good relations with China, and has played down talk of an arms race.

International criticism.

Earlier, China's foreign ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said: "I can't say anything about the reports. I really don't know." But he added: "China advocates the peaceful use of space and opposes the weaponisation of space, and also opposes any form of arms race." Australia and Japan have been among the countries joining criticism of the reported test.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he had asked China for an explanation and said nations "must use space peacefully".

Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer said Australia did not want to see "some sort of spread... of an arms race into outer space".

The US National Security Council had confirmed an article in the magazine American Aviation Week and Space Technology, which reported that the test had taken place.

The report said a Chinese Feng Yun 1C polar orbit weather satellite was destroyed by an anti-satellite system launched from or near China's Xichang Space Centre on 11 January.

The test is thought to have occurred at more than 537 miles (865km) above the Earth.

SOURCE : BBC

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  #2  
Old Posted Jan 21, 2007, 3:11 PM
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As Chinese, we will ask: if the U.S. can do such things, why not us?
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  #3  
Old Posted Jan 22, 2007, 5:06 AM
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I agree.
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Old Posted Feb 10, 2007, 5:42 AM
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Just came across this thread, and I have to say that this is just one more step in a long string of questionable actions, all in the name of China's space exploration. I don't understand why they chose to do this.

The United States stopped performing these tests 20 years ago. Take our word for it, it can be done, and a lot more carefully nowadays; more carefully than simply blowing up a rocket right next to the satellite.

The New York Times probably said it best in this article published on February 6th.


------------------------------------------------
Orbiting Junk, Once a Nuisance, Is Now a Threat

By WILLIAM J. BROAD
Published: February 6, 2007

For decades, space experts have worried that a speeding bit of orbital debris might one day smash a large spacecraft into hundreds of pieces and start a chain reaction, a slow cascade of collisions that would expand for centuries, spreading chaos through the heavens.

In the last decade or so, as scientists came to agree that the number of objects in orbit had surpassed a critical mass — or, in their terms, the critical spatial density, the point at which a chain reaction becomes inevitable — they grew more anxious.

Early this year, after a half-century of growth, the federal list of detectable objects (four inches wide or larger) reached 10,000, including dead satellites, spent rocket stages, a camera, a hand tool and junkyards of whirling debris left over from chance explosions and destructive tests.

Now, experts say, China’s test on Jan. 11 of an antisatellite rocket that shattered an old satellite into hundreds of large fragments means the chain reaction will most likely start sooner. If their predictions are right, the cascade could put billions of dollars’ worth of advanced satellites at risk and eventually threaten to limit humanity’s reach for the stars.

Federal and private experts say that early estimates of 800 pieces of detectable debris from the shattering of the satellite will grow to nearly 1,000 as observations continue by tracking radars and space cameras. At either number, it is the worst such episode in space history.

Today, next year or next decade, some piece of whirling debris will start the cascade, experts say.

“It’s inevitable,” said Nicholas L. Johnson, chief scientist for orbital debris at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. “A significant piece of debris will run into an old rocket body, and that will create more debris. It’s a bad situation.”

Geoffrey E. Forden, an arms expert at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who is analyzing the Chinese satellite debris, said China perhaps failed to realize the magnitude of the test’s indirect hazards.

Dr. Forden suggested that Chinese engineers might have understood the risks but failed to communicate them. In China, he said, “the decision process is still so opaque that maybe they didn’t know who to talk to. Maybe you have a disconnect between the engineers and the people who think about policy.”

China, experts note, has 39 satellites of its own — many of them now facing a heightened risk of destruction.

Politically, the situation is delicate. In recent years China has played a growing international role in fighting the proliferation of space junk. In 2002, for instance, it joined with other spacefaring nations to suggest voluntary guidelines for debris control.

In April, Beijing is to play host to the annual meeting of the advocacy group, known as the Inter-Agency Space Debris Coordination Committee. Donald J. Kessler, a former head of the orbital debris program at NASA and a pioneer analyst of the space threat, said Chinese officials at the forum would probably feel “some embarrassment.”

Mr. Kessler said Western analysts agreed that China’s new satellite fragments would speed the chain reaction’s onset. “If the Chinese didn’t do the test, it would still happen,” he said. “It just wouldn’t happen as quickly.”

Last week in Beijing, a foreign ministry spokeswoman failed to respond directly to a debris question. Asked if the satellite’s remains would threaten other spacecraft, she asserted that China’s policy was to keep space free of weapons.

“We are ready to strengthen international cooperation in this regard,” the spokeswoman, Jiang Yu, told reporters.

Cascade warnings began as early as 1978. Mr. Kessler and his NASA colleague, Burton G. Cour-Palais, wrote in The Journal of Geophysical Research that speeding junk that formed more junk would produce “an exponential increase in the number of objects with time, creating a belt of debris around the Earth.”

During the cold war, Moscow and Washington generally ignored the danger and, from 1968 to 1986, conducted more than 20 tests of antisatellite arms that created clouds of jagged scraps. Often, they did so at low altitudes from which the resulting debris soon plunged earthward. Still, the number of objects grew as more nations launched rockets and satellites into orbit.

In 1995, as the count passed 8,000, the National Academy of Sciences warned in a thick report that some crowded orbits appeared to have already reached the “critical density” needed to sustain a chain reaction.

A year later, apprehension rose as the fuel tank of an abandoned American rocket engine exploded, breaking the craft into 713 detectable fragments — until now, the record.

Amid such developments, space experts identified the first collisions that threatened to start a chain reaction, putting analysts increasingly on edge.

On Jan. 17, 2005, for instance, a piece of speeding debris from an exploded Chinese rocket collided with a derelict American rocket body that had been shot into space 31 years earlier. Warily, investigators searched though orbital neighborhoods but found to their relief that the crackup had produced only four pieces of detectable debris.

A year later, Mr. Johnson, the chief scientist for NASA’s orbital debris program, and his colleague J. -C. Liou, published an article in the journal Science that detailed the growing threat. They said orbits were now so cluttered that the chain reaction was sure to start even if spacefaring nations refrained from launching any more spacecraft.

“The environment is unstable,” they wrote, “and collisions will become the most dominant debris-generating mechanism.”

It was in this atmosphere of rising tension that China last month fired a rocket into space that shattered an old weather satellite — its first successful test of an antisatellite weapon.

David C. Wright, a senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists, a private group in Cambridge, Mass., calculated that the old satellite had broken into 1,000 fragments four inches wide or larger, and millions of smaller ones.

Federal sky-watchers who catalogue objects in the Earth orbit work slowly and deliberately. As of yesterday, they publicly listed 647 detectable pieces of the satellite but were said to be tracking hundreds more.

The breakup was dangerous because the satellite’s orbit was relatively high, some 530 miles up. That means the debris will remain in space for tens, thousands or even millions of years.

Mr. Kessler, the former NASA official, now a private consultant in Asheville, N.C., said China might have chosen a relatively high target to avoid directly threatening the International Space Station and its astronaut crew, which orbit at a height of about 220 miles.

“Maybe the choice was to endanger the station in the short term or to cause a long-term problem,” he said. “Maybe that forced them to raise the orbit.”

Even so, the paths of the speeding Chinese debris, following the laws of physics and of celestial mechanics, expanded in many directions, including upward and downward. As of last week, outliers from the central cloud stretched from roughly 100 miles to more than 2,000 miles above the Earth.

A solution to the cascade threat exists but is costly. In his Science paper and in recent interviews, Mr. Johnson of NASA argued that the only sure answer was environmental remediation, including the removal of existing large objects from orbit.

Robots might install rocket engines to send dead spacecraft careering back into the atmosphere, or ground-based lasers might be used to zap debris.

The bad news, Mr. Johnson said in his paper, is that “for the near term, no single remediation technique appears to be both technically feasible and economically viable.”

If nothing is done, a kind of orbital crisis might ensue that is known as the Kessler Syndrome, after Mr. Kessler. A staple of science fiction, it holds that the space around Earth becomes so riddled with junk that launchings are almost impossible. Vehicles that entered space would quickly be destroyed.

In an interview, Mr. Kessler called the worst-case scenario an exaggeration. “It’s been overdone,” he said of the syndrome.

Still, he warned of an economic barrier to space exploration that could arise. To fight debris, he said, designers will have to give spacecraft more and more shielding, struggling to protect the craft from destruction and making them heavier and more costly in the process.

At some point, he said, perhaps centuries from now, the costs will outweigh the benefits.

“It gets more and more expensive,” he said. “Sooner or later it gets too expensive to do business in space.”
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  #5  
Old Posted Feb 10, 2007, 7:26 AM
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Originally Posted by jiaodagongjian View Post
As Chinese, we will ask: if the U.S. can do such things, why not us?
Most all Americans wouldnt question the ability or right, but rather if it was a prudent choice.
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Old Posted Feb 17, 2007, 6:08 PM
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Most all Americans wouldnt question the ability or right, but rather if it was a prudent choice.
That's the problem.
Why only the other nations' choices are not prudent?
And who can judge whether the choice is prudent or not?
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Old Posted Feb 17, 2007, 8:09 PM
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This is not about whether a government's choice is prudent, but whether or not they choose to work within a long-established framework.

The Chinese government's space efforts remind me of a teenager learning to teach himself to drive for the first time, without supervision or instruction, even though someone wouldn't mind helping him if he would just ask.

The only difference is that the novice driver doesn't kill 500 people and wipe out an entire village at one time because a gust of wind 'blows' his car off the road.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y4oAQm4r5sI

Nor does his attempt threaten future space exploration, the International Space Station or commercial aerospace in general, all in the name of 'peaceful intentions'.
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Old Posted Feb 18, 2007, 2:13 AM
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This is not about whether a government's choice is prudent, but whether or not they choose to work within a long-established framework.

Nor does his attempt threaten future space exploration, the International Space Station or commercial aerospace in general, all in the name of 'peaceful intentions'.
In china's opinion, China having the ability of space is helpful for the world's peace, which can bring balance to the world, something very different from now.

In China's opinion, the U.S. always do things aggressively, such as overthrow Jugoslavia, occupancy Iraq... So the world need another superpower to keep balance, which can make the U.S. more prudent, when making the decision of a war.
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Old Posted Feb 18, 2007, 2:33 AM
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Originally Posted by jiaodagongjian View Post
That's the problem.
Why only the other nations' choices are not prudent?
And who can judge whether the choice is prudent or not?
When you endanger dozens of orbitals in order to perform a test that did not require a "catastrophic kill" to be considered a successful.

Anyways, all it did was provide the US with an excuse to develop more potent space based weapons. Orbital partical beam weapon platforms here we come!
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Old Posted Feb 18, 2007, 5:27 AM
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I am Chinese, too. I hate to say that but I do think the 'Satellite-killing' test is endangering many commercial satellites, and it's un-necessary. I don't care who has the right to perform the test or not, you need to do the test in smart way. i.e...Japan does not need to bomb one of their cities to perform the nuclear test; they did it on computer (Although they never admit they did). And guess what, when they bring the bomb into real life, it will kill.
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Old Posted Feb 18, 2007, 12:33 PM
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Japan does not need to bomb one of their cities to perform the nuclear test; they did it on computer (Although they never admit they did). And guess what, when they bring the bomb into real life, it will kill.
Japan is a guilty country, which means all what it can do is atonement.
China is a free country, we can do what we like.
You can't compare China with Japan.

I have to say the sapce garbage may threaten other satellites, but the possibility is very little, such as a flying balloon may make an airplane crash, which immorally exaggerate much more by the U.S. press.
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Old Posted Feb 18, 2007, 8:19 PM
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Japan is a guilty country, which means all what it can do is atonement.
Japan may still have issues with atonement, but their new prime minister seems to have other ideas. This new attitude is a response to mainland China's new-found but awkward diplomatic clout, along with North Korea's passive-aggressive stance.

Quote:
China is a free country, we can do what we like.
You're kidding, right? You know, at first I might have pegged you as being nothing more than a slightly naive nationalist. But I'm starting to think you may actually be a CCP member.

Quote:
You can't compare China with Japan.
You're right. If I were a citizen of Japan, I could travel freely within my own country, hop on a plane and fly to anywhere I'd like, express my own opinion about my government without fear of retribution, and use the internet without having to look over my shoulder.

Quote:
I have to say the sapce garbage may threaten other satellites, but the possibility is very little, such as a flying balloon may make an airplane crash, which immorally exaggerate much more by the U.S. press.
Immorally exaggerated? You are definately drinking the kool-aid....
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Old Posted Feb 19, 2007, 12:55 AM
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You're right. If I were a citizen of Japan, I could travel freely within my own country, hop on a plane and fly to anywhere I'd like, express my own opinion about my government without fear of retribution, and use the internet without having to look over my shoulder.
So do chinese.

It's a pity that you didn't think so.
I think, it's all because of the ugly press in your country, which Subscribed China as a monster to satisfy his interested readers.

You should come to China, or you can learn some simple chinese to surf in some chinese webs, and I assure that you can find the truth finally.

By the way, you are so smart to change the topic from international affairs to local.
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Old Posted Feb 19, 2007, 3:34 AM
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Originally Posted by jiaodagongjian View Post
So do chinese.

It's a pity that you didn't think so.
I think, it's all because of the ugly press in your country, which Subscribed China as a monster to satisfy his interested readers.

You should come to China, or you can learn some simple chinese to surf in some chinese webs, and I assure that you can find the truth finally.
I have the luxury of a free press to rely on, just in case it was my only source of information.

But fortunately for me, I know plenty of people already living there; they are either there on behalf of their company, or teaching as visiting professors. They love what they do, and enjoy living there. In addition, my cousin travels to Deng Feng 1 - 2 times a year (for the last 10 years) to receive gong-fu training from 31st-generation shaolin monks. He knows first-hand how these shaolin monks view their leaders; he sees the restrictions that these monks are placed under, and the bureaucracy that they have to wade thru.

All of them will continue to work and to travel, thanks to a host government that is desperate for money and knowledge. Friends and co-workers remind them, in no uncertain terms, of what not to say or do (openly talk politics, voice opinions, worship freely, etc).

My friends and relatives have a very clear understanding of the bullshit that ordinary citizens have to put up with. They see the narcissistic attitude people have towards their leaders; they see how citizens are unable to control their government or it's rampant corruption.

Quote:
By the way, you are so smart to change the topic from international affairs to local.
Hardly. I'm not the one who tried to draw the comparison between Japan and China. And I'm not the one who has a misguided definition of freedom.
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Old Posted Feb 19, 2007, 4:06 AM
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Through out the history, if one nation is too much of nationalism, the nation will end because of its arrogant and ignorant. Japan can still survive until now is because they are hiding their nationalism, but once their people promote it and believe in it, their days is numbered. I am Chinese, I don't want to see the great Chinese nation to make the same mistake like the others. Don't act like a fool.
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Old Posted Feb 20, 2007, 12:46 AM
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I have the luxury of a free press to rely on, just in case it was my only source of information.
That's the problem, before the war against Iraq, all your people believed The Iraq was mading nuclear weapons, though it isn't the truth.
The free press needn't say the truth, but to curry favor with readers' prejudice to seek the more sales.
You should select the true information form your rubbish press.

By the way, I prefer The Newyork Times to the Washington Times, because the bigger press is more responsible.
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Old Posted Feb 20, 2007, 1:06 AM
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Through out the history, if one nation is too much of nationalism, the nation will end because of its arrogant and ignorant. Japan can still survive until now is because they are hiding their nationalism, but once their people promote it and believe in it, their days is numbered. I am Chinese, I don't want to see the great Chinese nation to make the same mistake like the others. Don't act like a fool.
I am not a nationalism.
But as a growing superpower, we should care the peace of the world, and put a check on the U.S. to avoid the force misused.
Japan is a deficient and small country, so don't have a great weight of responsibility.
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Old Posted Feb 20, 2007, 1:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coffeeman View Post
Through out the history, if one nation is too much of nationalism, the nation will end because of its arrogant and ignorant. Japan can still survive until now is because they are hiding their nationalism, but once their people promote it and believe in it, their days is numbered. I am Chinese, I don't want to see the great Chinese nation to make the same mistake like the others. Don't act like a fool.
I am not a nationalism.
But as a growing superpower, we should care the peace of the world, and put a check on the U.S. to avoid the force misused.
Japan is a deficient and small country. it doesn't have a great weight of responsibility.
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Old Posted Apr 8, 2007, 1:41 PM
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In case some people here doesn't know the difference between a rulling party and people of the nation...

I don't think Jiaodagongjian is a CCP member, Just like an american doesn't have to be a democrats or republicans to defend his country when he is having debate with FOREIGNERS... what's wrong with him defending his homeland? do you think only CCP member supporsts CCP? e.g. Republicans in america, are more than half of Americans are republicans? can't be right? but they voted for republican party, they don't have to be the member of the party to support their government...

I'm not a communists, However i'm a big fan of CCP, CCP is doing their jobs, China is getting better day by day, that's enough, i don't care who runs the nation, as long as the government can make the country prosper and make its people proud, that's enough...

we have 1/5 of world's population and we are 3rd largest country on this planet... why can't we conduct such tests to show our deterrence to those who dislike China and never want China to be a superpower?...

You said USA have done similar test 20 years ago, so we can't do the test? what kind of funny logic is that? So you mean only you guys can say " hey, i can shot down your satellites, so you better watch out..."?

Our answer to you is " No way, you have that technology 20 years ago, i know our path is slower than you, but that doesn't mean you can scare us us with that, we have it too right now... the moment you shot down our satellite, yours will be down too..." as the result, the world is balanced and the peace is enhanced...


Our standpoint is different in the very beggining... you can't expect us to think the same way as you, that's impossible, like fire and water can never get together, we can never come together politically....
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  #20  
Old Posted Apr 8, 2007, 1:58 PM
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About japan, even today, japan is still being ignorant to its criminal past and still refusing to admit their crimes during WW2...

Why we say Kneeling Germans are taller than standing japs? it's true both physically and mentally...

Can anyone imagine German prime minister paying visit to Auschwitz Concentration Camp and honour Nazi's criminals for setting up the massacre camp? no right... but japan's prime ministers are doing this right now... they pay visit to Yasukuni shrine a place to worship and honour War criminals...

Never dream about being friend with japan or expecting it to change to "normal nation" as long as they never change their attitude, they should never be a normal nation, unless they really change...
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