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Casualty Of War?

I have a piece up at Pajamas Media this morning on the potential effect of Russia's renewed belligerence on the US space program.

I should note that I may have been a little too sanguine about the situation for the current ISS crew. While the RSA astronauts in Expedition 17 weren't born in Russia, it's possible that they are Russians, and sympathetic to Russia, given the way that Russia had colonized the Ukraine and Turkmen Republic and moved populations of Russians in there. It's all really speculation. Only the crew really know what the atmosphere is up there.


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Pete Zaitcev wrote:

I'm glad you noticed that city of Chuguyev is located in the KHarkov's region.

More importantly though, how would you call Saakashvili's actions of declaring a ceasefire one day, and launching an ill-fated military adventure the next night, if not duplicious? I cannot decide if I'm more disgustied with that or his attempts to claim that parts of Georgia are now under U.S. control (claims Condi had to deny vigorously). Russia may be the aggressor here, but Georgian leadership is the deceiver. There will be no solution to this crisis until Saakashvili is removed and replaced with a responsible leader. It's as if having Arafat as a "partner" never taught us anything.

Rand Simberg wrote:

I wasn't really commenting on the relative merits of Georgia or Russia's acts. Even if Saakashvili is partially at fault doesn't mean that the Russians are blameless. They have been duplicitous, regardless of Georgia's behavior.

Brock wrote:

It was never a good idea to be dependent on Soyuz (or any other single system, let alone one controlled by Russia) for crewed space access. If this is the shove that gets the ball rolling, okay by me.

I fear NASA's response to to this will be "Apollo on Steroids AND HGH!" An incentive for change can be appropriated toward fell purposes. Rather than fund COTS D and SpaceX I can see the argument being made "We can't take the risks inherent to having a single commercial provider with an 0 for 3 launch record; let's build it ourselves and screw the costs!" And then, welcome to 1960.

The failure of Socialism is often "More Socialism." NASA may be no exception.

Pete Zaitcev wrote:

I do not disagree with Russian fault, but the thing is, they are very good at making that case by themselves. They don't need my help in looking a worse bully than they are now. I would not be surprised if we found the damn pipeline accidentially destroyed when they pull back. But the thing that amazes me is just how much the evil Saakashvili regime gets a pass by all the righteous commenters.

So we came to the pont where just about the only one who shows massacres of civilians by Georgia is Beeb, who apparently decided that they hate America (and her allies and policies) more than they hate Russia. It's funny how they were full of anti-Russian commentary regarding Putin/Medvedev regime's political assasinations, mistreatment of BP execs, etc., and then overnight Russia turned into a garantor or peace, admirable in all respects.

I don't know if I should claim that the whole policy of fostering democracy in specifically selected countries is at stake because of Saakashvili... At least Maliki hasn't tried to annex Abadan or Ahvaz, so things are going pretty good there, by comparison. But it certainly took a blow.

Now we certainly may, and probably will follow the "we win they lose" strategy (hello Ken). That's great. But it will set us back decades, and will delay the destruction of Islamists by the same decades -- all thanks to Saakashvili. So why does this guy get a pass?

At least someone started talking about building RD-180 in country again, thank god for small favours. I was afraid everyone forgot about it.

Orville wrote:

Don't forget that the Russians have the only gun on ISS :-)

Carl Pham wrote:

Christ, if this puts the fork to "international" efforts in space, that will be great. I wonder how much the continued Russian upscrewery since 1981 has cost? More or less than the cost of finishing off the CRV because we *have* to, there being no Soyuz? Ugh.

ken anthony wrote:

I made the mistake of looking at comments before reading your article. After seeing this...

Russia may be the aggressor, but Georgian leadership is the deceiver

I was so furious I couldn't initially focus on the article until I regained my calm.

So hello Pete. 'may be' no longer flies. When the tank columns are rolling and the ships are being loaded there may be a question of intent. It's been answered in spades.

Georgia is the deceiver? No, my friend, Saakashvili at 41 has shown himself to be an emotional man and certainly a bit naive. But the lies that are on-going and relentless are coming from the 'King of the North'.
Not from Georgia.

I've been reading first hand accounts from people on the scene. One day somebody will put these together and you will find the moral relativism ploy will look pretty stupid and obvious.

I drank the kool-aid believing Russia could be a partner. As long as his people support him, Saakashvili will not go as Putin desires, rather it is Putin that will NEVER be trusted as a partner again.

Even our traitorous state department seems to be waking up from that dream.

I think we aught to make arrangements to put the ISS into a higher orbit and shut her down. Russia is no longer a partner. We don't need them to deal with Iran. We don't need them to deal with anything else.

Their word is worthless. Proven by the fact that they agreed in writing to withdraw from Georgia, but they don't simply ignore their word. They continue to terrorize the population (death, rape and destruction) with the consent of the Russian government.

People are being humiliated as slave laborers. This isn't panties on someones head by some fools. This is an active program by the Russian government. Many of these people will probably disappear, never to be seen again. Others are right now hiding in the woods for several days trying to find a way out.

These are not acceptable partners in anything. Their words are meaningless. Their actions are against our interest. Halfway is not possible with deceivers like these.

Yes, the scales have come off the eyes.

I have no hate for the Russian people. As I pointed out to my ex-wife (she is starting to talk with me again) I married one. I'm just not going to listen to anymore blame the victim. Putin is the liar. His propaganda machine is working overtime to distort the truth. Sakashvili is mother Theresa by comparison.

BTW, is anyone still believing the lie that Putin is not in charge??? ...yeah, thought so.

ken anthony wrote:

Not to forget our 'partners' partner...

ken anthony wrote:

Not exactly rusting in their silos...

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This page contains a single entry by Rand Simberg published on August 18, 2008 7:21 AM.

Scaled Brings in SpaceDev Again was the previous entry in this blog.

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