as everyone knows by now, the space shuttle Columbia has exploded on re-entry over Texas. It’s an extremely sad occasion, and a terrible thing to happen.
Lots of people look on space exploration, and the astronauts who do it, as something mundane. No way — it takes a certain kind of bravery and heroism to do this. Every astronaut (from what I’ve read) is clearly aware of the odds that the vehicles they use have a large likelihood of suddenly exploding beneath their feet — and is therefore taking a huge risk on behalf of humanity, and the expansion of human knowledge. They should be viewed as heroes, as a result.
I just hope the ISS project, and manned spaceflight in general, continues…
Some off-beat news links you may not have seen:
Iraqis Call Shuttle Disaster ‘God’s Vengeance’. Pretty tasteless story all-round, right down to the journalism; ask a random ‘government worker’ and a local Baghdad mechanic what they think, and present that as ‘official’ Iraqi opinion!
and finally, a big fat oops for Boston.com, with a story entitled Columbia streaks toward Florida touchdown to end successful 16-day science mission still up on their website. Oh dear oh dear oh dear…