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Space is a great stage for diplomacy. Yet, when it comes to cooperating with China’s space program, the United States may have forgotten that lesson. This week, former NASA Commander of the International Space Station, Leroy Chiao, urged leaders in Washington DC to strongly consider the consequences of rebuking China’s offer to collaborate in space. “We Americans have taken for granted that we’ve been the leader in human space flight. But it’s been almost five years since we gave up the ability to launch astronauts into space … It’s much more constructive to engage (with China) than to isolate. If we don’t we risk being left behind.”

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