Back in February, the Obama administration announced they were cutting back the space program to redirect their efforts to the Muslim world. NASA Administrator Charlie
Bolden gave the answer Tuesday, when he revealed that Obama had asked
him to "find ways to reach out to dominantly Muslim countries. I wrote about it It registered nary a blip until May, when the NASA chief told Al Jazeera that Obama wanted him to "make Muslims feel good" (about their nonexistent contributions).
There was a national outcry, and rightly so, and the Obama administration disingenuously backpedaled. How do we know the backpedaling was disingenuous? Look ……………..
Shamma al Qassim, Hazza Bani Malek and Hamad Rajab at the NASA Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, CA
NASA chief Charlie Bolden said it:
"Perhaps foremost, [Obama] wanted me to find a way to reach out to the
Muslim world and engage much more with predominantly Muslim nations to
help them feel good about their historic contribution to science, math,
and engineering." The White House later denied this, but this news item confirms Bolden's contention that Obama told him to make outreach to Muslims his priority at NASA.
"Emirati trio boldly go into Nasa as a world first," by Kareem Shaheen for The National, July 26 (thanks to Pamela Liner):
Three Emiratis who are the first non-US citizens to train at
the Nasa space agency said the intensive programme could be vitally
important for the future scientific development of the UAE.
"This is a one-of-a kind. It's a first step into something bigger," said Hazza Bani Malek, 20, speaking from the Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, California.
Mr Bani Malek was selected along with his colleagues Hamad Rajab and
Shamma al Qassim by the Arab Youth Venture Foundation, an organisation
in RAK, to take part in the Educational Associates programme, which was previously reserved for US citizens.
The programme is sponsored by Mubadala, the Abu Dhabi
Government's strategic investment company. Nine more Emirati students
are slated for training at Nasa this autumn.
Mr Rajab, 21, is an electrical engineering student at UAE University
who is specialising in research into water-recycling systems that will
be used in new Nasa spacecraft during the six week internship.
He said he believes his project could have a direct impact on water-recycling technology in the UAE.
"The UAE suffers a lack of water resources," he said.
"Getting this technology back in our country will really contribute in saving the amount of money that is used."…
That's good. Saving the UAE money ought to be NASA's highest priority.
All three interns said their participation was particularly
significant in view of the US President, Barrack Obama's recent
advocation of increased collaboration with the Arab world in the realms
of science and technology.
Mr Rajab said he would use the knowledge he has accrued on the programme to benefit his home country.
"I want to develop my country. I want to be a decision maker. I would
like to work in the Government or the private groups, he said. "I will
definitely go back to the UAE and try to return some of the favours it
did for me. I just want to utilize my knowledge and expertise."…
Great. What is the U.S. getting out of this?
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