World press paranoia over Mir

The world’s press seems to be having an acute attack of paranoia over the Mir space station. What everyone appears to forget is that Mir performed heroic deeds, broke many records, stayed in space far longer than originally intended, contributed more to science than practically any other machine ever invented and begins its perfectly controlled descent in a routine act of decommissioning. The Soyuz rocket coupled to the spacecraft will steer it into a carefully-programmed descent programme, which will see the craft largely disintegrate in the atmosphere, with remnants making contact with Earth in a pre-programmed, uninhabited area of the Pacific Ocean. Numerous press reports point to the fact that the Russian government has taken out an insurance policy because there is a possibility of catastrophe. It would seem that the writers of such reports almost hope that there is a disaster and that people are killed, to get an opportunity to have a cheap dig at Russia. However, it should be pointed out that Russia’s space programme is not at an end with Mir. Mir was another chapter in the glorious history of Russia’s space programme, starting with the first man in space, Yuri Gagarin. Certainly there have been accidents, as there have been with the Apollo programme in the USA, all of which are deeply lamentable as man strives to push beyond the boundaries of science and knowledge. All the victims, whatever their nationalities, were heroes, pioneers in this quest. Russia’s space programme joins that of other nations in the Alpha project, already under way. Mir was never intended to be eternal and indeed outlived her originally intended lifespan. The press reports which mention a possible catastrophe fail to mention the demise of the US space station, Skylab, which fell into an uncontrolled downwards spiral at the end of the 1970s before crashing to earth in Australia, fortunately in the middle of the desert. The American Space Agency, NASA, seems to be more worried about the presence of an American millionaire on the International Space Station, carried by a Russian rocket. After having paid for his trip and having undergone training, 60-year-old Dennis Tito was ready to begin final preparations for a holiday in space. The Russian space programme was ready to keep its side of the deal but NASA has refused to allow him to go, for reasons of security. One must remember the recent incident with a US submarine in which civilians apparently took part in an unnecessary emergency surfacing which resulted in the deaths of nine Japanese students and crew of a training vessel on the surface.


Subscribe to Pravda.Ru Telegram channel, Facebook, RSS!

Author`s name Editorial Team