Monday, June 19, 2006

A Red Moon, Again

BEIJING (Reuters) - A top official in China's space program has set 2024 for the country's first moonwalk, a Hong Kong newspaper reported on Monday, cementing its position as a new space power....

"China now basically possesses the technology, materials and the economic strength" to put a man on the moon, the paper quoted the official as saying.
To bust out a bit of snark, it's worth mentioning that if China landed a man on the moon in 2024, they'd still be 55 years behind the United States. Of course, if the US put a man on the moon by 2024, the same would be true.

Nevertheless, I'm sure this will be used to justify a whole bunch of new scary articles about how China is going to surpass the United States. This should be recognized for what it is: Lockheed and Boeing begging for more pork. Via Brad Plumer:
The QDR is just the latest in a series of U.S. government reports (including intelligence analyses and reports commissioned by Congress) expressing alarm over China's growing economic and technological prowess in the development of aggressive military capabilities. Some of these reports, however, contain mistakes that call into question the reliability of the information presented to Congress and to the American public. The analysts who produce the reports include information based on poorly translated documents and unreliable Chinese press accounts. They often fail to include information from more reliable Chinese open sources. Their selections of information often appear biased toward confirming the prevailing view of China.

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