Questions Trail After Satellite

American politicians, Asian powers fret over missile capability
By Lucas Laursen,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 22, 2008 11:59 AM CST
Questions Trail After Satellite
Sailors line up on the deck of the USS Russell before the arrival of Secretary of Defense Robert Gates at Pearl Harbor Naval Base, Thursday, Feb. 21, 2008 in Honolulu. The USS Russell was a back up ship for the USS Lake Erie that fired its missile last night to shoot down a broken satellite. (AP Photo/Mark...   (Associated Press)

The US Navy's destruction of a spy satellite on Wednesday continues to stir doubts both domestically and internationally, reports the New York Times. China issued an explicit warning yesterday, and Russia has raised questions. “The geopolitical fallout of this intercept could be far greater than any chemical fallout that would have resulted from the wayward satellite,” said House Homeland Security Committee member Edward Markey.

The operation took place with just over a month’s notice and off-the-shelf parts, showcasing American anti-satellite capability; en route to Asia, the defense secretary cautioned against making assumptions. “The question of whether this capability works has been settled,” said Robert Gates. “The question is against what kind of threat, how large a threat, how sophisticated a threat.” (Read more satellite stories.)

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