Thursday, February 21, 2008

US destroy spy satellite

Despite claims that the missile launch against spy satellite US-193 was all to do with safety, Russia has accused the US of using the mission as a smokescreen for military missile tests. The missile, which was fired in the early hours of Thursday [GMT], is said to have destroyed the satellite completely. Miles O’Brian, CNN’s science and space correspondent, said that reading between the lines the sensitivity of information and technology on board the satellite may have been part of the reason why the US went to such lengths to destroy it. He said there may have also been a certain amount of posturing to the Chinese who last year destroyed an aging weather satellite in a similar manner. But Gen. James Cartwright, the Joint Chiefs Vice Chairman, speaking at the Pentagon dismissed all the criticism and speculation. “Our objective was to intercept the satellite, reduce the mass that might survive re-entry. Vector that mass, as best we could into an unpopulated area, ideally the ocean, and breach the hydrazine tanks so that it would vent off” he told reporters this morning [CNN / Sky News / BBC].

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