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CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida (AP) -- The Soviets beat the United States at getting a satellite, and a man, into space. Now, the Chinese may get to the moon before the U.S. can make a return visit.
Chinese astronaut Fei Junlong exits the re-entry capsule of Shenzhou VI, China's second manned spacecraft.
Fifty years after Sputnik became the world's first artificial satellite, a new race is under way with the finish line on the moon. NASA, the former lunar champion, already is predicting defeat.
"I personally believe that China will be back on the moon before we are," NASA Administrator Michael Griffin said in a low-key lecture in Washington two weeks ago, marking the space agency's 50th anniversary, still a year away.
Griffin's candor startled many in the space community