The New Superpower in Space
Around half a century ago, the People's Republic of China launched its first satellite with its own rocket. Since then, the country has launched a large number of satellites and spacecraft and has continued to expand its program. As early as 2003, China began sending people into space. What is the Middle Kingdom's long-term strategy in space and how is it pushing for space conquest?
A few months ago, rumors about the acceleration of various space programs in the People's Republic of China were joined by news that Chinese space forums, which represent an important source of information for the Western press, are being put under massive pressure by the government. At the end of August 2021, they were ordered to remove material content from their pages, including completely innocuous ones, such as the history of Chinese space travel. Information about launches and progress of missions may only be disseminated if it is officially approved by the government.
China has never been a stronghold of free journalism, but as far as space travel was concerned, reports, including informal ones, were far more free than was always claimed in the West. It was relatively easy to pick up interesting insider information. Even employees of the Chinese launch centers reported in the fan forums on the progress of launch preparations or the course of missions without much fear of reprisals - even if a flight did not go exactly as one would have liked.