The Race for Near Space

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Gone are the days of the superpower space race. Exploring the heavens is now a global endeavor. The European Space Agency is deploying its own global positioning satellites, the Chinese are planning to launch their own astronauts into orbit, and the Russians are selling space tours at around $100,000 a seat. Where does all this leave NASA and the American space program in general?

A struggle is growing between those who imagine a future of universal exploration and others who would militarize the heavens, training lasers on the Earth. Tonight we take a look at who uses and controls the "final frontier," and ask if America has lost the twinkle in its eyes.


Andy Chaiken, space journalist, and author of "A Man on the Moon."

Bruce Sterling, author of Wired article magazine "Astrocop" and the militarization of space.

This program aired on April 3, 2002.


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