When I became the NASA Administrator — before I became the NASA Administrator — [Obama] charged me with three things: One was he wanted me to help re-inspire children to want to get into science and math, he wanted me to expand our international relationships, and third, and perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science, math, and engineering.
This will surely make the Taliban abandon its bellicoseness, won’t it?
Jules Crittenden comments,
Oddly, space exploration didn’t crack the top three. That explains why they put Mars on the back burner. Screw the Cosmos … they’re launching missions to the Casbah!
Charles Krauthammer ripped the goals:
“This is a new height in fatuousness,” Krauthammer said. “NASA was established to get America into space and to keep is there. This idea to feel good about their past and to make achievements is the worst combination of group therapy, psychobabble, imperial condescension and adolescent diplomacy.”
“If I didn’t know that Obama had told this, I’d demand the firing of Charles Bolden the way I would Michael Steele,” he continued. “This is absolutely unbelievable.”
Byron York writes about how NASA is now “not only a space exploration agency, but also an Earth improvement agency,” at least in Obamaspeak:
The Muslim outreach at NASA is the result of the White House’s preparation for Obama’s Cairo speech. Staffers found that many Muslims admire American achievements in science and technology, so Obama used the speech to announce the appointment of U.S. “science envoys” and a new fund “to support technological development in Muslim-majority countries.”
Obama appointed Egyptian-American scientist Ahmed Zewail as the first science envoy to the Middle East. Just last week, Zewail argued that the U.S. can build better relations with the Muslim world by “harnessing the soft power of science in the service of diplomacy.” The NASA initiative is part of that.
Last month, Bolden himself traveled to Cairo to mark the first anniversary of Obama’s speech. In an address at the American University, Bolden cited Zewail’s work and stressed NASA’s role in improving relations with Islamic nations.
Not content with this pseudo-self-esteem-for-the-Muslim world initiative, the administration also believes that
“We’re not going to go anywhere beyond low Earth orbit as a single entity,” Bolden said. “The United States can’t do it.”
But back to space; Who, pray tell, will American astronauts have to rely on to get them out and back from the rickety old space station? Russia!
Yes, Russia will take them for a ride, alright. (Make sure to read this while you’re at it.)
So, tell me, how’s that “hope” portion of the “hope and change” working for you?
Mr. Bingley goes to it.
UPDATE 2, NASA backtracking:
Former NASA Director Says Muslim Outreach Push ‘Deeply Flawed’
Bob Jacobs, NASA’s assistant administrator for public affairs, echoed that point. However, he said that Bolden was speaking of priorities when it came to “outreach” and not about NASA’s primary missions of “science, aeronautics and space exploration.” He said the “core mission” is exploration and that it was unfortunate Bolden’s comments are now being viewed through a “partisan prism.”
Hey, quoting a guy’s own words is now “partisan.”