Thursday, May 24, 2007

U.S. Still Perplexed By China ASAT Responses

U.S. diplomatic and military officials remain perplexed and unsatisfied with China's nonexplanatory responses to international protests regarding the Asian giant's January anti-satellite (ASAT) ballistic missile test.

But they appear to be pushing Congress to support increased situational awareness efforts for U.S. space assets first over developing offensive, defensive or even so-called operationally responsive space capabilities, according to several remarks made May 23 on Capitol Hill.

"To date, the United States has not received a satisfactory response to our questions concerning China's motivations for the test, the nature of their pre-test analysis on possible debris and China's plans for additional testing," said Donald Mahley, acting deputy assistant secretary of State for threat reductions, export controls and negotiations.

Further, U.S. officials are not convinced that the whole Chinese regime is unified on the issue, namely the foreign and defense ministries, Mahley testified in front of the House Oversight and Government Reform national security and foreign affairs subcommittee.

Makes you wonder what weird possible sceanrios could pop up. I don't mean in the sense of warfare, but if the Chinese government is really that fragmented, could there be deeper fissures that lie beneath? I doubt it, but you never know.

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