05:11 GMT +331 August 2016
Live
This file photo taken on September 20, 2008 shows Chinese tourists gathering to watch the Shenzhou-7 manned spaceship on top of the Long-March II-F rocket being transfered to the launchpad at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China's Gansu province

Get Out of My Space! China's Extraterrestrial Goals Prompt US Ire

© AFP 2016/ FILES
Asia & Pacific
Get short URL
11295782628

China plans to initiate 20 space missions this year including the testing of its most sophisticated rocket and the launching of a habitual space module. But security analysts in the US are expressing suspicions they have military implications.

China is already testing surface-to-air missiles that could strike targets in orbit and it’s also working with experimental lasers that can scramble or “blind” satellites. But as China keeps looking up to space, it’s raising some concern down below. Particularly from the US, according to China Cheat Sheets.

​The United States is already at odds with Beijing over cyber-warfare accusations and China’s militarization in the South China Sea. Now, security officials are worried that China’s armament might spread to outer space, home to US satellites vital to American interests.

The US relies on these devices for various military and civilian implications including gathering intelligence, and targeting weapons. Some analysts worry they may soon fall into Chinese striking distance.

This year, China intends to launch the Tiangong 2 space laboratory. China plans to later send astronauts to this habitual module, which will serve as a stepping stone toward a major space station. Chinese officials plan to have this station fully operational by 2020.  Some security analysts fear the station will have military implications.  

Could this mean we’ll be living Star Wars soon?

That’s up for debate.

China still trails far behind Russia and the US in terms of space technology. But in the last 12 years, China has sought to rapidly reduce the gaps it holds with both nations, and it’s showing no intentions of slowing down. 

Moreover, the extent of the military implications behind its rapidly-growing space program remains a mystery.

"There are a lot of avenues to go after satellites, and what worries people is that the Chinese are pursuing all of them," said James Andrew Lewis of the Center for Strategic and International Studies." The question becomes: If they're so into peace, why are they building so many weapons?"

Related:
Mountain Collapses on Road in China
'Mysterious Behemoth': Details of China's Newest Battleship Revealed
China May Participate in Talks With S Korea, US on N Korea Sanctions
3D Heart Model Helps Doctors Save Baby in China
Washington ‘Anxious’ Over China’s Presence in South China Sea Shoal
Germany, China Working on Cybersecurity Agreement - German Ambassador
China Calls on N Korea to Adhere to UNSC Resolutions Over Missile Launches
N Korea's Missile Launches 'Provocative' – Russian Ambassador to China
Carter Calls Russia, China Top Strategic Challenges to US
US Needs Russia, China to Make New Sanctions Against North Korea Work
Panic Reaches New Heights: 'Russia, China Planning Space Attacks on US'
EU-China Trade Deal Is Europe's Chance to Break Free From Toxic TTIP
China to Build Relations, Boost Cooperation With Taiwan - Prime Minister
China Sees Russian Air Withdrawal From Syria as Boost to Peace Process
China's Troops in Pakistan May Be an Attempt to Bypass US at Sea
Will This Trigger World War III? US Army Stockpiles Munitions Near China
Tags:
US-China relations, space exploration, space cooperation, space, China National Space Administration, East China Sea, China, Beijing
Community standardsDiscussion
Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik
  • Сomment

All comments

  • michael
    depending on your viewpoint anything could have military implications. I don't believe that they have made their point.
  • As soon as the septic (US) SECURITIES (aka CIA-ASS) are mentioned, it strait away means "WHAT ARE THEY PUTTING UP THERE???". They, the septics, dont like loosing control of ANYTHING!!! I have yet to see any other country making issues about something like this other than a loud mouth yank!!! They dont like loosing there monopoly!!!
  • dan sheppard
    Good, I hope they do militarize space. China has a clean record of not causing conflicts world wide beyond their neighbours (inevitable and natural in human history as most nations do).
    If there is someone 'tougher' out there than the US, then the US are less likely to impose their will on other nations.
  • tblizz
    The U.S. military worry over the satellites is that the whole of its attack weaponry is dependent on satellites. If they are neutralized, the U.S. military has no way to execute a battle plan. It's like a sabre-toothed tiger with all its teeth pulled. Which is exactly why both China and Russia intend on pulling those teeth. I'm for it.
  • The very fact that the US is So Worried about it's space assets suggests just how "militarized" the US has already made space. Don't forget that the US ABM system has already demonstrated the ability to take out satellites. The US has fully militarized space, the US should expect those countries on the receiving end of this US militarization of space to respond both in kind and asymmetrically. Such a response is defensive. If the US did not want this to happen, then the US should not have set the stage.
Show new comments (0)
Top stories