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China launches first manned space flight
Reuters ^ | 10-14-03

Posted on 10/14/2003 6:14:27 PM PDT by Brian S

Wed 15 October, 2003 02:07 BST

BEIJING (Reuters) - China has launched its first manned space flight from the Gobi desert, Xinhua news agency says, in its bid to become the third country to put a man in orbit after the former Soviet Union and the United States.

The Shenzhou V, or "Divine Ship V", was expected to orbit the Earth 14 times before returning after about 21 hours.

Xinhua said the craft carried astronaut Yang Liwei, 38. The launch on Wednesday, 42 years after the Soviet Union put the first man into space, marked a milestone for China's secretive space programme, which analysts say has its sights set on a manned mission to the moon.


TOPICS: Breaking News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: china; shenzhouv; space
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1 posted on 10/14/2003 6:14:27 PM PDT by Brian S
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To: Brian S
More clinton legacy!
2 posted on 10/14/2003 6:15:35 PM PDT by TheRedSoxWinThePennant
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To: Brian S
So they don't know if it's in orbit yet? It's barely had enough time to get there.
3 posted on 10/14/2003 6:16:39 PM PDT by Brett66
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To: All
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4 posted on 10/14/2003 6:16:43 PM PDT by Support Free Republic (Your support keeps Free Republic going strong!)
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To: Brian S
Congratulations. Welcome to 1961.
5 posted on 10/14/2003 6:18:51 PM PDT by zencat
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To: Brian S
Godspeed.
6 posted on 10/14/2003 6:19:05 PM PDT by zook
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To: Brett66
I think I saw it fly over my house, it said WALMART on the side of it :-)
7 posted on 10/14/2003 6:19:16 PM PDT by MJY1288 (This is your tagline "Bush/Cheney04", this is your tagline on drugs "AnyOtherChoice/04")
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To: zencat
I wonder what's next.... The pocket fisherman?
8 posted on 10/14/2003 6:20:15 PM PDT by MJY1288 (This is your tagline "Bush/Cheney04", this is your tagline on drugs "AnyOtherChoice/04")
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To: zencat
Welcome to 1961.

Wasn't that the year our gov't was instructing us to "duck and cover"??? lol...

9 posted on 10/14/2003 6:20:21 PM PDT by Brian S (" In the United States, armed masses represent the foundation of political order.")
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To: Brian S
Remember; they still have to get this astronaut back down to earth safely if they want to claim total success.
Kinda reminds me of a Ren and Stempy episode...
The two were somehow caught up in the Soviet space program.
Astronauts were given a number (like waiting at the deli)...
Failed launch after failed launch(explosion after explosion)...
10 posted on 10/14/2003 6:20:22 PM PDT by CHATTAB
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To: Brian S
Not that I wish ill towards the throttle jockey riding in that thing (I'm kind of envious, actually), I hope the damned thing crash lands in Chappaqua.


Poetic justice.
11 posted on 10/14/2003 6:20:30 PM PDT by Viking2002
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To: Brian S
the craft carried astronaut Yang Liwei, 38.

Boy, oh boy... would I ever hate to be THAT guy...

12 posted on 10/14/2003 6:20:54 PM PDT by Ramius
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To: zencat
LMAO Thanks, bud. My bourbon just came out my nose.....LOL
13 posted on 10/14/2003 6:21:27 PM PDT by Viking2002
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To: zook
bump...zook. Godspeed for this soul.
14 posted on 10/14/2003 6:21:51 PM PDT by Brian S (" In the United States, armed masses represent the foundation of political order.")
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To: Viking2002
Spam in the CAN!
15 posted on 10/14/2003 6:21:58 PM PDT by jaz.357 (The beatings will continue until morale improves!)
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To: CHATTAB
As I mentioned on the other thread, all that matters is the capsule. If the guy is dead inside, that can be "corrected."
16 posted on 10/14/2003 6:22:41 PM PDT by July 4th
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Comment #17 Removed by Moderator

Comment #18 Removed by Moderator

To: Brian S
I bet that if Wong Wei survived his "duel" with our surveilance plane in '01 he would be the one in orbit now.
19 posted on 10/14/2003 6:23:32 PM PDT by Semper Paratus
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To: TheRedSoxWinThePennant
I wonder if Bill Klinton and Al Gore were there to watch the lift off, God only knows the Chinese have them two treasonous bastards to thank for the technology
20 posted on 10/14/2003 6:24:29 PM PDT by MJY1288 (This is your tagline "Bush/Cheney04", this is your tagline on drugs "AnyOtherChoice/04")
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To: JackRyanCIA
I hope I'm wrong, but I can see this date as marking the end of the American Era...and the beginning of the Chinese Era...

21 posted on 10/14/2003 6:25:00 PM PDT by CHATTAB
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To: Brian S
It should properly read: China launched a piiece of it's property into space.
22 posted on 10/14/2003 6:25:55 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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MORE...


China Launches Manned Space Mission


The Associated Press
Tuesday, October 14, 2003; 9:09 PM


GOBI DESERT, China - China launched its first manned space mission on Wednesday, sending an astronaut hurtling toward orbit and becoming the third country in history to do so on its own - four decades after the Soviet Union and the United States.

The smoky tracer was visible against a bright, azure northwest China sky. The official Xinhua News Agency immediately confirmed the launch and said the astronaut was Yang Liwei, 38.

"China's first manned spacecraft, the Shenzhou 5, blasted off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in the northwestern province of Gansu at 9 a.m. Wednesday (9 p.m. EDT)," Xinhua said. State television cut into its programming to announce the launch.

It was the culmination of a decade of efforts by China's military-linked manned space program - and a patriotism-drenched moment for a communist government more concerned than ever about its profile on the world stage.

Security was tight around the remote Gobi Desert base, some 175 miles northeast of Jiuquan.

On Wednesday morning, the only road to the launch site was crowded with traffic, including military vehicles and civilian tour buses. But private cars were turned back and phone calls to the base were blocked.

China kept details of the event secret, saying in advance only that the launch would take place between Wednesday and Friday and that the astronaut would orbit the Earth 14 times. Yang was identified as a lieutenant colonel.

The Shenzhou 5 launch came after four test launches of unmanned capsules that orbited the Earth for nearly a week before parachuting back to China's northern grasslands. State media say the manned flight is expected to last about 20 hours
23 posted on 10/14/2003 6:27:03 PM PDT by Brian S (" In the United States, armed masses represent the foundation of political order.")
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To: CHATTAB
I think it takes more than one space flight for that to happen. I've been to China and I enjoyed it very much. But China will never be a world power until it unleashes its people.
24 posted on 10/14/2003 6:27:03 PM PDT by zook
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Comment #25 Removed by Moderator

To: Constructionist; CHATTAB
I think you both are a couple of total Pessimists, socialism will NEVER defeat freedom.
26 posted on 10/14/2003 6:27:36 PM PDT by RobFromGa (Sen. Joe McCarthy helped win our death-match against the USSR- Pass it on!)
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To: Normal4me; RightWhale; demlosers; Prof Engineer; BlazingArizona; ThreePuttinDude; Brett66; ...
I hope there is a new space race that will happen.

Space Ping! This is the space ping list! Let me know if you want on or off this list!
27 posted on 10/14/2003 6:28:21 PM PDT by KevinDavis (Let the meek inherit the Earth, the rest of us will explore the stars!)
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To: Brian S
Chinese launch into space
The cubbies make it to the series...

This is like Nostradamus stuff.
28 posted on 10/14/2003 6:28:26 PM PDT by djf
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To: CHATTAB
LOL That's what people were saying 20 years ago about the Japanese. We could cripple China with a stroke of a pen. Ban all trade with them and they're done
29 posted on 10/14/2003 6:28:44 PM PDT by MJY1288 (This is your tagline "Bush/Cheney04", this is your tagline on drugs "AnyOtherChoice/04")
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Comment #30 Removed by Moderator

To: Uno Animo
The Great Stainmaker has sold us out and put the whole country in danger of annihilation. In another era, another time this treasonous thug would either be hanging from a rope or be given a bullet in his dummy skull.

that about sums it up. Just wait till hillary runs al-queda will have the stealth bomber.
31 posted on 10/14/2003 6:29:23 PM PDT by TheRedSoxWinThePennant
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Comment #32 Removed by Moderator

To: Brian S
Better late than never, eh China?!
33 posted on 10/14/2003 6:30:42 PM PDT by Excuse_My_Bellicosity (Stop the violins!! Visualize whirled peas...)
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Comment #34 Removed by Moderator

To: RobFromGa
I'm no pessimist; just a realist.
Let's say that China opens up and becomes a democratic republic...
Let's say that China stays communist...
Either way they out-number us---they're a massive giant that has its eye on having a bigger role in the world!
I can only hope this launch will energize our space agency and the populace (especially our young people) to want a piece of the space action.
I know I'm dissapointed--- where are our Mars colonies?!!!
35 posted on 10/14/2003 6:33:58 PM PDT by CHATTAB
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To: Excuse_My_Bellicosity
The rocket made of rice and bamboo wasn't the problem...
it took years to collect enough panda-poop propellant.
36 posted on 10/14/2003 6:34:05 PM PDT by djf
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To: zencat
I was just thinking that...so it's official, China is 42 years behind us. They're doing better than the 75 years they were behind before Clinton became President.
37 posted on 10/14/2003 6:34:06 PM PDT by Scott from the Left Coast
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To: Brian S
"The China Space Agency expressed it's thanks to former President Clinton for the missle guidance technology that made the flight (and hitting the US with nuclear weapons) possible".

Said the Director of the China Space Program; "Who would have thought it so easy. Such a small investment in the Clinton Campaign and we moved ahead by forty years."
38 posted on 10/14/2003 6:34:32 PM PDT by Moby Grape
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To: RobFromGa
The real question is will Chinese socialism ever beat American socialism. Seeing how they have about 4x the population that we do and what with us fueling their economy of small nick-nacks, I can see it happening.
39 posted on 10/14/2003 6:36:30 PM PDT by HoundsTooth_BP
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Comment #40 Removed by Moderator

To: MJY1288
A stroke of the pen? Is that magic pen capable of transporting manufacturing plants back to our home country?
I'll admit, I'm pretty ignorant about this subject, but, can somebody answer this for me:
Wouldn't any American company that sets up shop in China have to give controlling interest (51%) to the communist Chinese government? Anybody? Thanks.
41 posted on 10/14/2003 6:37:12 PM PDT by CHATTAB
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Latest AP: Entered Orbit...



(10-14) 18:28 PDT GOBI DESERT, China (AP) --

China launched its first manned space mission on Wednesday, sending an astronaut hurtling into orbit and becoming the third country in history to do so -- four decades after the Soviet Union and the United States.

With a column of smoke, the Shenzhou 5 craft cut across a bright, azure northwest China sky at exactly 9 a.m. (9 p.m. EDT). The official Xinhua News Agency immediately confirmed the launch and said the astronaut was Yang Liwei, 38.

"China's first manned spacecraft, the Shenzhou 5, blasted off," Xinhua said. State television cut into its programming to announce the launch, though no footage was shown.

Minutes later, a CCTV announcer said that Shenzhou 5 and Yang had "entered orbit at 9:10." (9:10 p.m. EDT).

It was the culmination of a decade of efforts by China's military-linked manned space program -- and a patriotism-drenched moment for a communist government more concerned than ever about its profile on the world stage.

Security was tight around the remote Gobi Desert base, some 175 miles northeast of Jiuquan.

On Wednesday morning, the only road to the launch site was crowded with traffic, including military vehicles and civilian tour buses. But private cars were turned back and phone calls to the base were blocked.

China kept details of the event secret, saying in advance only that the launch would take place between Wednesday and Friday and that the astronaut would orbit the Earth 14 times. Yang was identified as a lieutenant colonel.

The Shenzhou 5 launch came after four test launches of unmanned capsules that orbited the Earth for nearly a week before parachuting back to China's northern grasslands. State media say the manned flight is expected to last about 20 hours.

"The launch of Shenzhou 5 is long-awaited by the Chinese people," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue said earlier. She said the flight was a key step in the "peaceful development of space" -- a reflection of China's effort to reassure the world that its military-linked program is benign.

The Shenzhou, or "Divine Vessel," is based on the three-seat Russian Soyuz capsule, though with extensive modifications. China also paid Moscow to train at least two astronauts.

But Beijing insists everything sent into space will be developed and made in China. State media, trying to dispel suggestions that its triumph depends on foreign know-how, refer to Shenzhou as "China's self-designed manned spaceship."

Chinese media reported earlier that Yang Liwei has been a pilot since 1983.

"I will not disappoint the motherland. I will complete each movement with total concentration. And I will gain honor for the People's Liberation Army and for the Chinese nation," the popular Web site Sina.com quoted Yang as saying.

Phoenix Television, a Hong Kong broadcaster with close ties to China's military, said Yang had entered the capsule at 8 a.m. (8 p.m. EDT) Wednesday.

Yang reportedly was born in 1965 in Youzhong County in Liaoning province, an industrial area in China's northeast. He is 5 feet, 6 inches tall and earns about $1,200 a month, Sina said.

Sina quoted his older sister as saying he was an athletic child who enjoyed swimming and ice skating.

He works for the Aviation Military Unit of China's People's Liberation Army, Chinese media said.

People's Daily said the Shenzhou 5 capsule had completed its own final tests and, on Tuesday, was "sitting on the launch pad with more fuel being injected." It said top Chinese leaders, including President Hu Jintao, were to attend the launch.

However, state television scrapped plans for a live broadcast of the launch. A Hong Kong newspaper said the cancellation was prompted by fears of the "political risks" of something going wrong.

Xinhua quoted space officials Tuesday assuring the public that the astronauts' space suits were safe and the Long March CZ-2 F booster was China's "best rocket."

After months of official silence, the government showed growing confidence over the past week, announcing that the flight would blast off some time between Wednesday and Friday and splashing pictures of the once-secret launch base across newspapers.

But the decision to cancel a live broadcast suggested leaders might be unnerved by the thought of the propaganda disaster that an accident could produce. The People's Daily Web site gave no explanation for the decision to cancel.

China used to broadcast satellite launches live, but stopped in 1995 after a rocket blew up moments after liftoff, reportedly killing six people on the ground.

State television planned to broadcast taped scenes of the launch only if it succeeds, the Hong Kong newspaper South China Morning Post said, citing "media sources."

State-run China Central Television would not confirm the report.

"There might be a live broadcast, or there might not," a CCTV spokeswoman, who refused to give her name, told The Associated Press. "CCTV employees aren't allowed to answer that question."

Dozens of messages left on Chinese Web sites taunted officials for their decision and demanded that the government show its people the historic launch as it happens.

Such sites are monitored by censors who enforce official rules on content and sometimes erase postings, which suggested the negative postings were genuine.

"The decision is very idiotic and reflects our nation's lack of confidence," said a note on the popular Sina.com Web site, signed Flyying111.

The Gansu Daily, published in the provincial capital, Lanzhou, welcomed the imminent launch.

"Finally," it said, "the time has come to realize the 1,000-year dream of flying dreamed by the sons and daughters of China."

42 posted on 10/14/2003 6:37:23 PM PDT by Brian S (" In the United States, armed masses represent the foundation of political order.")
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To: Constructionist
One race..

There are really significant cultural and linguistic divisions...and even physical appearance differences... between the various parts of China; it only SEEMS like a giant homogenous block.

43 posted on 10/14/2003 6:38:17 PM PDT by John H K
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To: JackRyanCIA
China isn't Japan, that's for sure. The living standards for the average person in Japan is far better and the Japanese enjoy a little thing called "Self Determination" something the average person in China knows nothing about.

But hey!!! who cares about that these days

44 posted on 10/14/2003 6:39:07 PM PDT by MJY1288 (This is your tagline "Bush/Cheney04", this is your tagline on drugs "AnyOtherChoice/04")
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To: Constructionist
Watch China dominate the world. You just watch.

Watch me laugh me *ss off. Watch N Korea nuke Beijing. Watch Russia and China war. Watch Taiwan win in the end.

45 posted on 10/14/2003 6:39:07 PM PDT by Darheel (Visit the strange and wonderful.)
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To: Brian S
They confirm orbit, the most dangerous part is over.
46 posted on 10/14/2003 6:39:18 PM PDT by Brett66
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To: Brian S
Hopefully he's a better pilot than Wong Wey
47 posted on 10/14/2003 6:41:41 PM PDT by MJY1288 (This is your tagline "Bush/Cheney04", this is your tagline on drugs "AnyOtherChoice/04")
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To: Brian S
How love how all the Chicom propaganda is worded to make it appear that China is the first nation into space. Let them come to the moon. They can stand in line to pay $1,000,000 per night to stay in a Marriott Resort overlooking the Sea of Tranquility.
48 posted on 10/14/2003 6:41:42 PM PDT by mrobison
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To: TheRedSoxWinThePennant
More clinton legacy!

That is incorrect and hardly a fruitful mode of viewing this historic accomplishment.

49 posted on 10/14/2003 6:42:23 PM PDT by RightWhale (Repeal the Law of the Excluded Middle)
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To: MJY1288
I wonder what's next.... The pocket fisherman?

Or the Flowbee.


50 posted on 10/14/2003 6:43:48 PM PDT by CheneyChick (Let the Hauskleaning Begin)
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