While the US lays ambitious plans to conquer the Middle East and win over the hearts and minds of the people there, Russia and China have set their sights on the moon, and for the same reason: a desperate search for fuel. NASA has plans to return to the moon as well.
Russia's leading space company RKK Energiya says it will send manned missions to the moon by 2015 and build a permanent base there between 2020 and 2030. Energiya manufactured the Soyuz space craft. In all three cases, the missions will be funded by the government, although private enterprise may eventually take over some of the US moon missions.
In January 2004, President Bush announced that NASA will send astronauts back to the moon by 2020. The big question for the future is: will these three superpowers compete for the moon's resources, or will they cooperate? Each country plans to dock their ships at the International Space Station, which is controlled by NASA. Will we let them do it? And what about the European Space Agency? They have already sent an unmanned craft to Mars, so they are quite capable of sending a manned mission to the moon.
Will we allow other countries to use the ISS to mine valuable Helium-3 fuel from the moon? All this may depend on whether or not we feel there is enough fuel there for everyone.
The American flag is still firmly planted on the moon, where it was left behind by the Apollo mission over 20 years ago. If we assert our ownership of the moon, there will undoubtedly be military consequences. If wars are fought over moon dust, will they be fought on earth or in space, with terrorism or with straightforward military might?
These are some of the most important questions of the future, yet they are being totally ignored by the mainstream media?but you can be certain that they're not being ignored by the governments and military of the major superpowers, or by us here at unknowncountry.com.
Art credit: gimp-savvy.com
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