Per Aspera ad Astra

It is, in a way, galling that Europe still uses Russian and American launch pads and rockets for our space missions. On the other hand, there is a certain undeniable satisfaction in the fact that the first Galileo sattelite has been launched from Baikonur - the launch platform used to put the very first sattelite into orbit.

The Galileo project is more than simply redundant navigation. It is an important step towards European independence. We have come far from the divided and weakened Europe that listened fearfully to the blip-blip-blip of Sputnik I. We have moved towards a unified foreign policy and a unified economic policy. We have taken our place in the ranks of economic and industrial superpowers. We have taken steps towards independence in diplomacy and security.

And we now have a permanent precence in space.


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