One of the important events during the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union was their ambitious space race. Both countries wanted to do their best to leave a lasting mark in space. Russia is still in the space race in cooperation with China. This will become a cause of concern for the United States, because both China and Russia are America’s main competitors in the economic, diplomatic, and military fields.
On March 9 this year, the China National Space Administration and the Russian Federal Space Administration signed a memorandum of understanding. The two sides decided to jointly establish an independent permanent research base on the moon. This research station will be called the International Lunar Research Station. Russia has been observing the American space race for decades. Perhaps Russia wants to counter the US-led “Artemis” moon landing plan through cooperation with China.
Kremlin spokesman Peskov has expressed his disapproval of the United States’ space ambitions, saying that “it is unacceptable for the United States to unilaterally privatize and colonize space.”
Like Russia, China plans to maintain a permanent presence on the moon by 2036. Russia has a three-step lunar development plan. The goal is to implement it between 2025 and 2040, including the lunar orbital module (2025), the construction of a lunar base (2035-2034), and the construction of a manned lunar comprehensive exploration system ( 2040). According to the memorandum of understanding signed by China and Russia, China and Russia will build an Earth-Moon Space Economic Zone, which will promote future space development. China is eager to become a global leader by 2045, with a view to displaying its high-end technology to the world through Mars exploration missions and soft landing on the moon.
On the other hand, Russia has experience in a space race with the United States during the Cold War. By cooperating with China, Moscow can coordinate and integrate its human, capital, and technological resources to counter the US presence in space, specifically, the US presence on the moon.
In addition to the United States, India is also paying close attention to China and Russia, as India continues to advance its mission to explore the moon and space.