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Navy Shoots and Scores on Satellite, It Hopes

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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The U.S. government appears confident that their effort to shoot down a wayward satellite was a success Wednesday, though it's unclear whether the potentially harmful fuel tank it carries was also destroyed. Which is to say, they aimed and they fired and who the hell knows? (They'll find out later whether the $40 to $60 million venture was a complete success or not.) No matter that many in the scientific community believed the plot to be a not-too-mildly disguised ploy to flex its new military space technology muscle. Or even that the move probably emboldens the military space efforts of Russia and China, which was quick to recall that the Bush administration cried hearty tears when China's government performed similar satellite target-practice last year. Says China's Communist-run People's Daily: "The United States, the world's top space power, has often accused other countries of vigorously developing military space technology, but faced with the Chinese-Russian proposal to restrict space armaments, it runs in fear from what it claimed to love."

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