Why America Is Lost in Space
Sutherl, Benjamin, Newsweek International
Byline: Benjamin Sutherland
Strict rules on U.S. military technology have helped boost Europe to the top of a $100 billion industry.
"Contaminated by American technology" makes for a curious but enlightening description. For most of the past century, the world has viewed American technology as unrivaled, and the notion that the U.S. space industry could be shunted to the margins would have seemed absurd. But the attitude of European space-industry executives toward U.S. components and software has changed in recent years. When building, launching or operating satellites and other spacecraft, many have come to believe, American know-how is now a liability.
The culprit is not American technology per se, but onerous restrictions the U.S. government has placed on the export of space components to all countries--enemies and allies alike. Ten years ago the U.S. Congress, fearful that U.S. technology would wind up in Chinese missiles and bombs, put commercial satellites under the jurisdiction of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations, a set of rules for purchasers of American military products. The rules say that each component of civilian spacecraft--even a rivet, if it was designed …
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Publication information: Article title: Why America Is Lost in Space. Contributors: Sutherl, Benjamin - Author. Magazine title: Newsweek International. Volume: 153. Issue: 06 Publication date: February 9, 2009. Page number: Not available. © 2009 Newsweek, Inc. All rights reserved. Any reuse, distribution or alteration without express written permission of Newsweek is prohibited. For permission: www.newsweek.com. COPYRIGHT 2009 Gale Group.
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