On April 24, Robert Manning published an article in the National Interest with Peter Wilson concerning international space activities. They argue that space is becoming increasingly anarchic, and advocate for a return to heavier international regulations on humanity’s final frontier.
“It is a sign of the times that NASA, whose accords would be a strong draft to base global rules on, eschewed the path of negotiating a wider international pact to codify principles and guidelines for civilian space agencies. The accords are, in effect, rules that assert dominion over activities that, ‘…may take place on the Moon, Mars, comets and asteroids … as well as in the orbit of the Moon or Mars,’ and in cislunar space. Yet, to date, they do not include some major space powers—China, France, Germany, and India. Europe remains divided on the Artemis Accords. In the case of China, NASA had little choice—the 2011 Wolf Amendment bans its cooperation or coordination with any Chinese government-affiliated entities. It has proved largely counterproductive, neither improving human rights nor constraining China’s space efforts. Instead, alarmed by NASA robust collaboration with SpaceX and other commercial partners, China has significantly accelerated investment in own, largely parallel lunar exploration plans.”