China’s Space Silk Road Reaches Mars and Beyond

Most geopolitical analysis is quite down to earth. But don’t forget to watch: China’s influence is going up from heaven.

On July 23, a long March 5 rocket exploded from the Wenchen Launch Center on Hainan Island, China. Equipped with a lander, an orbiter and a rover, the Chinese Tianwen-1 spacecraft has set the course for Mars to begin a comprehensive survey of the red planet.

The Mars mission, however, is not solely about discovery. It is part of a broader strategy designed to bring China into the category of “fully developed, prosperous and powerful” nations by the year 2049.

As President Xi Jinping explained to Tikonats living in China’s first prototype space station Tiangong-1 back in 2013, “the space dream is part of the dream to make China more strong.” He said that Xi’s China is now striving for the achievement of “concealment ability and keeping a low profile”. ”

Under Xi’s command, the People’s Republic has launched two prototype space stations (Tiangong-1 and Tiangong-2), as well as a cargo ship (Tianzhou) capable of refueling other spacecraft.

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