November 17, 2021

China space goals sets up new frontier in the tech battle with the U.S.

A Long March-7 Y3 carrier rocket carrying the Tianzhou-2 cargo spacecraft blasts off from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site on May 29, 2021 in Wenchang, Hainan Province of China.

Yuan Chen | VCG | Getty Images

GUANGZHOU, China — In 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik, the first artificial satellite, which sparked a space race with the U.S.

China, however, was nowhere to be seen.

While the U.S. and the Soviet Union were battling for superiority in this new domain, Mao Zedong, one of the founders of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), reportedly said: “China cannot even put a potato in space.”

Fast forward more than six decades and President Xi Jinping, China’s current leader, is seen congratulating three astronauts who were sent to the country’s own space station earlier this month.

Since Mao’s comments, China has launched satellites, sent humans to space and is now planning to build…

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