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Asia's Space RaceNational Motivations, Regional Rivalries, and International Risks$
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James Clay Moltz

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780231156882

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231156882.001.0001

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Asia’s New Presence in Space

Asia’s New Presence in Space

(p.1) Introduction Asia’s New Presence in Space
Asia's Space Race

James Clay Moltz

Columbia University Press

This introductory chapter presents a brief overview of the emergence of Asia's national space programs. It outlines their current trajectories and their international interactions—both cooperative and competitive. Recently, human space activity has become the focus of China, Japan, India, and South Korea. Their increased engagement in the exploration of outer space has attracted global attention. Unfortunately, some Asian countries utilize this activity for military purposes. Their actions have spurred regional competition, nationalism, and arms acquisition. As a result, Asia is witnessing a growing rivalry for technological ascendancy, political prestige, and security advantages through new space capabilities. This comes into contrast to the space developments in Europe where cooperation is strong (European Space Agency). The chapter looks into how these increasing technological pressures, the complexities of multilateral arms control, and rising nationalism overwhelm prospects for military restraint among Asia's space powers.

Keywords:   Asia, space programs, human space activity, regional competition, nationalism, arms acquisition, technological ascendancy, Asia's space powers

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