In 2014 China made a round trip to the moon with robotic explorers. The Chinese intend to launch a mission to the moon that will return samples back to Earth. They have outlined their ambitious plans for outer space here. IEEE/Spectrum calls China the “Next Space Superpower.”
“The Chinese have said repeatedly that they are not going to go into space, land on the moon, look around, say, Been there, done that,’ and consider themselves done,” says Johnson-Freese. “They’re going to do stepping-stone infrastructure, and in those terms their space station makes sense.”
Where else might Chinese astronauts go? Their current program doesn’t commit to a crewed mission to the moon, but many experts believe the odds favor one. A recent report published by the Chinese Academy of Sciences proposes a road map that also mentions a crewed lunar base, a crewed mission to Mars, and robotic exploration of other planets by the year 2050.
And it has all been made possible because of political donations to Bill Clinton.
The failed launch on Feb. 14, 1996, was yet another setback in China’s plans for its troubled Long March rocket. One after another in recent years, Long March rockets have gone haywire seconds after takeoff, doing near-barrel rolls or loops reminiscent of the early days of the American space program in the 1950s. Some released the satellites that U.S. firms paid millions of dollars to launch into useless, oddball orbits.
These mishaps, and the bitter post-accident recriminations that followed, set the stage for the current congressional and Justice Department investigations of Loral Space & Communications Ltd., the company whose satellite was demolished in the 1996 accident and that is being probed for allegedly turning over sensitive information to the Chinese as part of a post-crash report. Ironically, that report marked an effort by Loral to head off years of rising frustrations between U.S. companies and Chinese space officials over the repeated Long March failures.
For years before that accident, Chinese space executives tried to cover up the causes of the errors, U.S. industry executives said. In almost every case, the Chinese denied that their Long March rockets had been at fault and blamed the Western-built satellites.
“Until quite recently, many in the space world shared the view that the Long March was pretty shoddy, their quality control standards weren’t high, and dealing with them was a dicey situation,” said John Logsdon, director of George Washington University’s Space Policy Institute. “It was made worse because many Westerners didn’t have confidence in China’s reviews.”
Chinese guidance technology was faulty. Enter Bill Clinton.
Schwartz met Clinton at a small political dinner in Manhattan in the spring of 1992. Clinton, then governor of Arkansas, conceded that he knew practically nothing about the defense industry, and the two chatted for about 20 minutes. Later in the evening, another guest asked Clinton a defense-related question, and Schwartz was impressed by how much of their conversation Clinton had absorbed. “His grasp of details, his grasp of the issues was extraordinary,” Schwartz recalled.
Mel Levine, a former California congressman who knows both men, said: “Bernard clearly likes Clinton personally. And Clinton has paid a lot of attention to him.”
Another prominent Clinton official who paid attention to Schwartz was Brown. In 1994, Schwartz was one of 24 executives on Brown’s plane to China.
Two months before the late summer trip, Schwartz wrote a check for $100,000 to the Democratic National Committee. He denied there was any link.
Here are the timelines:
April 24, 1995: Loral chairman Schwartz gives $25,000 to the Democratic National Committee.
June 30, 1995: Schwartz gives $20,000 to Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, which provide support for Democratic Senate candidates.
Aug. 30, 1995: Schwartz gives $75,000 to DNC.
Sept. 30, 1995: Schwartz gives $20,500 to DSCC.
Oct. 9, 1995: Secretary of State Warren Christopher decides satellites should remain a military munitions item.
Nov. 29, 1995: Schwartz gives $100,000 to DNC.
Nov. 29, 1995: A Chinese government agency writes Loral, asking for help in getting an upgrade for its dual-use imaging technology, exports of which are prohibited under U.S. sanctions.
Jan. 26, 1996: Loral is sold to Lockheed for $9 billion.
Once Clinton approved the launch of a Chinese rocket with Loral Hughes help:
Feb. 6, 1996: Clinton approves the launch of four communications satellites on Chinese rockets.
Feb. 6, 1996: Wang Jun of CITIC, owners of percentages in Chinese satellite companies, visits the White House for coffee and dines with Commerce Secretary Ron Brown.
Feb. 8, 1996: The White House and Commerce Department begin to talk about the satellite export issue again.
Feb. 14, 1996: A Chinese rocket carrying Loral Intelsat satellite explodes, destroying a Chinese village.
Feb. 15, 1996: Schwartz gives $15,000 to DSCC.
Feb. 15, 1996: The State Department gets an urgent request from the White House to speed up the process of switching the satellite licensing to the Commerce Department.
Feb. 29, 1996: Schwartz gives $50,000 to Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which bankrolls Democratic House candidates.
March 8, 1996: China launches missiles.
March 14, 1996: Clinton decides to move the satellite licensing function to the Commerce Department.
March 15, 1996: Loral President J.A. Lindfelt writes Commerce to say the export of a dual-use technology, known as synthetic aperture radar, is being held up by the Defense, State and Commerce departments.
April 1996: Schwartz announces the formation of Loral Space and Communications.
April 24, 1996: Schwartz gives $50,000 to DSCC.
June 10, 1996: Schwartz gives $100,000 to DNC.
July 22, 1996: Liu Chao-Ying of China Aerospace meets Clinton with Johnny Chung.
July 31, 1996: Schwartz gives $5,000 to DSCC.
The timeline of Chinese money:
August 1996: Chung accounts show an influx of $300,000 from Liu Chao-Ying.
Aug. 18, 1996: Chung gives $20,000 to DNC to attend Clinton’s birthday party.
Aug. 28, 1996: Chung gives $15,000 to DNC at Democratic National Convention in Chicago.
Sept. 16, 1996: Schwartz gives $30,000 to DSCC.
Sept. 20, 1996: Schwartz gives $20,000 to DSCC.
Oct. 16, 1996: Schwartz gives $10,000 to DSCC.
Oct. 18, 1996: Schwartz gives $70,000 to DNC.
Oct. 24, 1996: Schwartz gives $5,000 to DSCC.
Nov. 5, 1996: New guidelines on Commerce licensing of satellites are published.
Nov. 5, 1996: Clinton is elected to his second term as president.
Oct., 1997: A federal investigation of Loral begins.
Feb. 12, 1998: As Clinton ponders whether to sign another waiver allowing launch of a Loral satellite aboard a Chinese missile, National Security Adviser Sandy Berger sends him a memo saying the Justice Department `has cautioned that a national interest waiver in this case could have a significant adverse impact on any prosecution [of Loral] that might take place based on a pending investigation of export violation.’
But Berger adds that `the advantages of this project outweigh the risk,’ and `it is inappropriate to penalize [Loral] before they have even been charged with any crime.’
Feb. 18, 1998: Clinton signs a waiver allowing Loral satellite to be lifted into orbit by the Chinese.
Bill Clinton handed over guidance technology to the Chinese for political money. Hillary sold America out to Russia for political money. In selling out to the Russians Hillary merely picks up the Clinton Family tradition and carries it forward.