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China Letter-News and Human Rights

China human rights news with focus on the Uygur of Xinjiang, Tibetans and Tibet, Chinese mining workers, religion, corruption and censorship.

Saturday, May 22, 2004

Great Wall: Now You See It Now you Don't

Psst.. About that pic of the Great Wall from space....

The Great Wall from Space Now I pondered long and hard as to whether I should post this story because it really is like Santa Claus isn't it? You really, truly want to believe.

But I came to the conclusion that I owed it to my extensive readership (sic) to disabuse them of the idea that I had been responsible for planting in their heads.

It is with regret therefore that I must tender this retraction of a post here announcing to all and sundry that yes Virginia the Great Wall of China (after extensive debate amongst scientists, astronauts and even national leaders) is visible from space and here is the pic to prove it!

It would appear that the picture taken by the European Space Agency satellite "Proba" and released by the ESA on it's website is not in fact the Great Wall but just your common or garden variety river.

Xinhua reports that embarrassed officials of the ESA have announced that someone got it wrong and released the photo without proper verification.

Well there is one little Chinese astronaut who must feel a little relieved with the news, after all, how unpatriotic when the state spends so much money on your joyride and you didn't see a bloody thing but some bodgy European satellite could?

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Xinhua Chineses Nes ArticleGreat Wall of China viewed from space-Mistake