Friday Flybys (vol. 21)

This week, China got the world attention a space power putting crews in orbit deserves. And the public scrutiny of Beijing's space ambitions will only increase. (Although, judging from the China National Space Administration's English-version Web site, where I find no mention of Shenzhou, nothing newsworthy appears to be underway at all lately.)

I'm not an aficionado of China's emerging program, but China space expert
Dr. Joan Johnson-Freese tells New Scientist, "China is fortunate in that it is probably the only country in the world that can successfully implement a space programme, because it doesn't have to respond to public opinion." She sees the U.S.'s refusal to allow China to participate in the International Space Station as "the last venue of Cold War politics," saying "It's not clear what kind of technologies we're afraid they are going to get. High-resolution reconnaissance is not something you usually put on a space station."

However, in her Tech Central Station column,
Melana Zyla Vickers sees it differently, warning that beyond China's "ostensibly peaceful ambitions lie more militaristic ones..." And other commentary, for example, this editorial in Investor's Business Daily seems to agree.

Meanwhile, over in Japan, while the Space Generation Congress convenes (greetings from Space Law Probe to friends in Fukuoka), an editorial in The Daily Yomiuri says Japanese officials concerned with space development may have
underestimated China's advance into space, and the Japanese government should overhaul its space strategy.

On a brighter note for Japan, Alan Boyle reports the
next space tourist could be Japanese businessman Daisuke Enomoto.

Back home, trust Keith Cowing to guide us through
a closer look at NASA's moon exploration plan.

And as promised, Jon Goff thoroughly blogs the three-day Alliance for Commercial Enterprises in Space (ACES) conference at NASA Ames. Grab all the posts at
Selenian Boondocks.

Jeff Foust bravely makes contact with some
cosmic legislation.

Prof. Joanne Gabrynowicz tells the The Daily Mississippian why
tourists sign away rights for the chance to go into space.

If you miss Rand Simberg when he's on vacation (as many in blogspace do), don't hesitate to pull up some of his classic stuff; I recommend, for example,
The Path Not Taken, from The New Atlantis (summer 2004), in which he leaves no space myth standing.

Oh. And I'm sorry but I don't get it about all the advance buzz and excitement surrounding Professor Reynolds'
hot new book, coming out early 2006. Inexplicably, the book is not a follow up to his world-renowned space law text. Never mind. While the Professor publishes the wrong bestselling book, and the planet lines up to buy it, here on Space Law Probe we can at least take comfort in some tasty recipes, you know, from his little blog ;-). (Yumm.)

For now, you won't see this
intelligent design trial on Court TV. (But you never know, you might see these astronaut-eating dragons attacking the space station on Sci-Fi channel.)

Welcome back to
Earth, Greg Olsen.


Update, Oct. 17th: Thanks for dropping by, Instapundit fans! But listen -- can we all please stop pre-ordering zillions of copies of Professor Reynolds' new book on Amazon? Predictably, An Army of Davids is already shooting through the sales rankings, while not a single truck will even fuel up to begin shipping the book for months. I insist that the Professor is misdirecting his talents. Writing this book, an opus covering a plethora of meaty current issues that have nothing to do with space law, is just another example of distractions that prevent him from focusing on the more critical task: to update his space law treatise. Let's all just keep away from the Amazon link and stop encouraging him, shall we? Come on, it's for his own good.

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