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Iran Says It Sent Monkey Into Space and Back 425

Iranian state TV is claiming that the country has successfully sent a monkey into space and back, bringing Iran one step closer to its goal of a manned space flight. According to the report, the rocket named Pishgam, or Pioneer in Farsi, reached a height of 120km. From the article: "Iran has long said it seeks to send an astronaut into space as part of its ambitious aerospace program, including plans for a new space center announced last year. In 2010, Iran said it launched an Explorer rocket into space carrying a mouse, a turtle and worms."
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Iran Says It Sent Monkey Into Space and Back

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  • by peter303 ( 12292 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:24AM (#42715271)
    Sometimes his policy explanations are as believable as a monkey's.
    • by Dave Emami ( 237460 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @05:28PM (#42719903) Homepage

      Actually, Ahmadinejad usually is depicted as a monkey in the expatriate Iranian press, and (so I hear from relatives there) commonly referred to as such in Iran by a lot of folks. There was even an incident a few years ago where a girl on a kid's TV show innocently mentioned that her dad had nicknamed her toy monkey after the guy [guardian.co.uk]. Part of it is due to perceived physical resemblance, and part due to the belief that he doesn't actually wield independent power but is just Supreme Leader Khamenei's "trained pet."

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:24AM (#42715273)

    Ahmadinejad made it all the way back safely

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by cayenne8 ( 626475 )

      Once they launched Ahmadinejad, why couldn't they have left him up there?? Talk about a popular candidate for space debris....

    • by slashmydots ( 2189826 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @12:20PM (#42715959)
      That, sir, is offensive to monkeys.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by mrops ( 927562 )

        Jokes and media brain washing apart. The guy lives so much more humbly that its hard to think if he is as crazy as western media shows him or is there more going on. The country is making progress in spite of all the sanctions. Not sure if its the Iranian media spin but the guy sits and eats simple foods on a mat on the floor, sleeps on the floor.

        I don't know which one is propaganda, this video or if the western media, or if there is a Jackal and Hyde going on here.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JyWul35JnjY [youtube.com]

  • From a US citizen (Score:4, Insightful)

    by funky49 ( 182835 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:25AM (#42715283) Homepage

    Congrats Iran!

  • by TractorBarry ( 788340 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:32AM (#42715357) Homepage

    Firing defenceless animals off into space for their twisted pleasure ?


  • by Rogerborg ( 306625 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:32AM (#42715363) Homepage
    Sounds like some sort of Flintstones / Jetsons crossover.
    • by agoliveira ( 188870 ) <adilson@@@adilson...net> on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:38AM (#42715435)

      Depends on what you call "stone age society". They indeed have a lot to grow regarding individual freedom and rights (but, hey, so does USA currently) but they have lots of money, a great schools and universities, weath is well distributed and very low crime rate.

    • by hamvil ( 1186283 )
      I see a pattern instead. Both US and Russian governments were pretty oppressive during their space race. US against the red menace and Russian against the evil of capitalism. Likewise, Iran is obsessed by the threats of a liberal society. It seems to me that hydrogen and paranoia are two mandatory ingredients for a space race.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Where did it land? Iran? No way. They would have to target the ocean and their navy is well monitored, blockaded and (honestly) fairly weak.
  • by Bocaj ( 84920 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:35AM (#42715401) Homepage
    I'm surprised they didn't start with some something more disposable, like a woman. I'm sorry, but it just shocks me that a society can make this kind of technological achievement and still treat some humans as second class citizens.
    • Despite all that's wrong with Iran, they have a very decent education system - that is even accessible for women, as I was told.

      When I was at the University of Washington, there were quite a number of good researchers, lecturers, and post-grads I encountered in engineering and chemistry (both male and female) were educated in Iran.

      • by cellocgw ( 617879 ) <cellocgw@NOSpAm.gmail.com> on Monday January 28, 2013 @01:48PM (#42717081) Journal

        Despite all that's wrong with Iran, they have a very decent education system - that is even accessible for women, as I was told.

        I'm no expert on the current state of education in Iran, but I can tell you with certainty that one of our allies, rhymes with "howdy arabia," is far worse than Iran when it comes to religious freedom, women's rights, and government funding of Islamic terrorist groups. Never make the mistake of rating countries on the basis of the USA's "friend or foe" list.

    • by pr0t0 ( 216378 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:41AM (#42715465)

      You mean like when the United States sent Alan Shepard into space in 1961, but didn't pass the civil rights act until 1964? And it's not like the CRA ended racial discrimination.

      • by Bocaj ( 84920 )
        Yep, that's what I mean.
      • by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @01:33PM (#42716873)

        If a western nation ever did anything bad, at any point in their history, that is remotely like something a non-western nation is doing today, well then the non-western nation gets a total pass. You can't criticize them because at one time something bad happened somewhere else!

        This false moral equivalency bullshit is just retarded. Every country has done bad shit in the past. Every country does bad shit now. That doesn't mean that we cannot, or should not, point out when it happens. This idea that every country that isn't the US, or at least every country that isn't western gets an automatic pass on everything they do because of bad shit that happen sin other places is beyond stupid and counter productive.

    • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @02:36PM (#42717765)

      Let's see... the first unmanned suborbital space flight was a V2 launched by Germany in 1944. Germany at that time is sort of famous for having different classes of people, the treatment of some making Americans' worst imaginings about Iran look like playland.

      The US first launched something into space in 1949. That's twenty years before Mad Men is set, six years before Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on the bus, and 54 years before Lawrence v. Texas made the remaining anti-sodomy laws in the US unconstitutional.

      It seems a country's position on equality of its citizens has very little to do with its success in space flight.

    • by wmac1 ( 2478314 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @02:41PM (#42717847)

      You don't know what you are speaking about. Iranian women have a 60% share of universities (i.e. 2.5 million seats) and they are possibly more educated than (percentage wise) most other countries.

      At least 50% of almost 10 million university graduates are women.

  • Go into a bar, I mean, an Iranian space capsule. The mouse says... Come on, help me out here.
  • by Chrisq ( 894406 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:41AM (#42715459)
    Its probably just to cover the news that their nuclear weapon research bunker [telegraph.co.uk] was blown up.Don't look here, watch the monkey!
    • by Jeng ( 926980 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @12:12PM (#42715853)

      Oddly enough the story you are linking to says that that story may also be a fake.

      Perhaps the Iranians just feel really insecure and want to make people believe they are more of a threat than they are?

      • by gtall ( 79522 )

        This sounds like it ought to be part of Blazing Saddles. Iranian government: No one move or we'll have our own nuclear accident. A spokeswoman from some nation speaks up: Isn't anyone going help that poor country. Iranian government backs slowly away, and hides behind a door.

  • by Henriok ( 6762 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @11:46AM (#42715491)
    Isn't this something that would be easily confirmed by the nations watching Iran's rising power? Or is it confirmed already? Iran is famous for its photoshopping skills and their knack for skewing propaganda in their favor. On the other hand, they do have the technology to do this. At least in theory.
    • I am curious about this also. It seems that if Iran felt like launching a surprise missile like this that we would hear about the entire Israeli military being scrambled. Or , all the interested parties were aware of the test and dont really feel like giving Iran credit.

  • That a culture that can manage to put a satellite into space, thinks that

    1) if they put a rocket in space, then everyone will start liking and respecting them; and
    2) that if nobody likes or respects them, it's not their fault, but everyone else's.

    Look at us! We're not a backwards Third World basketcase! Honest! Really!! Can we be friends now? :-p

    • A space program on the international stage isn't about getting people to like you. It's about getting people to fear you. You're basically showing the world that you have the infrastructure, cohesion, and technology to pull of a milestone feat for a nation. And it also implies that you can drop a nuke on any point on the globe.

      • by gtall ( 79522 )

        Yep, good way to induce your neighbors to match you so not only does your dick look bigger, everyone elses does as well. They will all have above average dick sizes.

        Iran before nuclear weapons: Hey great, we can swing our dick around and make nukes and no one will be able to do anything. Bwahahahaha!!!

        Iran after nuclear weapons: Oh shit, now our neighbors created their own nukes and are pointing them at us. Damn, damn, damn....now our dicks don't look so big.

  • The article mentions that the monkey went into space and back, but we all want to know whether Ahmadinejad survived or not.

  • that launching a rocket via the Kerbal Space Program [kerbalspaceprogram.com] doesn't really count.

  • Didn't a beverage company just send [wikipedia.org] a monkey to space and back?

  • I believe it.
    That settles it.
  • by trout007 ( 975317 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @12:13PM (#42715875)

    From all of these anti-Iranian comments I guess the US propaganda is working well. Pretty soon you all we clamor for war and sign up to fight. It's amazing how people can hate those they never met.

    • by medcalf ( 68293 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @12:26PM (#42716039) Homepage

      You might be misunderstanding. Persians and Americans are actually natural allies: we both want a stable Persian Gulf region, and together could provide it, as we did prior to 1979. But the Ayatollahs running Iran at the moment, since 1979, want an unstable Persian Gulf region, because that gives them openings to advance their religious interests. So even though there is a natural underlying affinity on a national level, on a political level there can be only conflict. The hostage crisis, where Iranian thugs took captive American embassy staff for well over a year, has not been forgotten in the US, and it colors our perceptions of Iran, and specifically of their leadership, to this day. On top of that, you have the Iranians committing acts of war against the US in Iraq (not only supplying and training our enemies, but planning and sometimes participating directly in attacks) and in Saudi Arabia (Khobar Towers), as well as apparently developing a nuclear weapons program aimed directly at destroying a key US ally, Israel, and really, after all of that, does there need to be "propaganda" to explain why American attitudes towards the Iranian government are what they are?

      All that said, yes, I generally despise theocrats I've never met, autocrats I've never met, dictators I've never met, and monarchs (other than titular only) that I've never met. I despise the enemies of human liberty generally. Is that really very amazing? And do you not also despise the enemies of liberty? Yet, why does that mean that I, or anyone else, is clamoring for war? It is possible to despise an ideology, and to attempt strenuously to oppose and in all ways limit that ideology, without clamoring for war. War is only necessary when irreconcilable differences over non-trivial differences exist. But just because we might not want war, does not mean we must start accepting those who would kill us if only they could.

      • by klapaucjusz ( 1167407 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @12:50PM (#42716323) Homepage

        You might be misunderstanding. Persians and Americans are actually natural allies: we both want a stable Persian Gulf region, and together could provide it, as we did prior to 1979.

        You are aware that the CIA put the Iranian dictator into power in 1953 [wikipedia.org], toppling Iran's democratically-elected government in the process? The 1979 "Islamic Revolution" merely replaced a dictatorship controlled by the USA with one that wasn't.

        • by metlin ( 258108 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @06:13PM (#42720425) Journal

          That's far from the complete truth. The unsaid fact is that Mosaddegh was trying to nationalize British and American owned oil operations, which was what prompted our actions.

          Ironically, Shah was a very modernizing influence in terms of rights for women and minorities. Yes, the man was batshit crazy, but he was aimed to create a secular state. Unfortunately, when the people revolted against him, Khomenei and his Islamic fundamentalist ilk essentially stole the revolution from the left liberals and established a theocracy in its place.

          Much like what's happening in Egypt today, where the Islamists have taken over a revolution from the left liberals.

          So, blaming the US for part of it is fair, but this is a classic example of unintended consequences.

      • by Comrade Ogilvy ( 1719488 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @01:53PM (#42717125)

        On top of that, you have the Iranians committing acts of war against the US in Iraq (not only supplying and training our enemies, but planning and sometimes participating directly in attacks) and in Saudi Arabia (Khobar Towers), as well as apparently developing a nuclear weapons program aimed directly at destroying a key US ally, Israel, and really, after all of that, does there need to be "propaganda" to explain why American attitudes towards the Iranian government are what they are?

        Secretary of Defense William Perry (at the time), the FBI, and Saudi Minister of the Interior Prince Nayef disagree with you about Khobar. The indictment in the US district court looks like a long list of Saudi citizens, and but a few others.

        As for "acts of war" in Iraq, the US plays the same game all the time, including the selling weapons to Iranian enemies, e.g. Saddam Hussein during the Iran-Iraq War. This kind of turnaround is only fair play.

        You are clearly demonstrating the power American propaganda has over minds who should know better. It is very "interesting" how selective your memory happens to be.

    • Propoganda always works against an intellectually lazy, shallow, disinterested, and ignorant population. Why do you think there's been such a concerted attack from the government on our primary education system over the past 10-15 years?

  • When the U.S. sent chimps into space (Ham, Enos) it was to test the effects of weightlessness on a living body, because scientists really thought that it might harm humans. Therefore, test on a chimp first to see if it's safe for man. So why start a new program at the bottom? Why not design a man-rated system from the get-go? The science is proven, if all you're after is political mileage, man-up and send a man up.
  • by Nexion ( 1064 )

    So let me see if I have this right. Iran launched what is effectively a dud ICBM with a monkey strapped to it and the western world has to hear about it in a Iranian press release relayed by a Canadian news outlet? Somehow I think if this story were true it would have had better coverage. Not to slight Iran, but the image of the rocket in the story looks like it would be lucky to have enough fuel to reach a neighbor's soil, but this wouldn't be the first time an image that had nothing to do with a story was

  • by guttentag ( 313541 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @12:28PM (#42716075) Journal
    North Korea announced that it had put a "satellite" into "orbit," accomplishing two goals: artificially inflating national pride and telling the world "we're actually just practicing building rockets that may one day deliver nuclear weapons to your cities." Iran plays the same games with its own people and the world, so it's logical that they had to craft a similar announcement, whether it's true or not. The day North Korea announced the "success" of its satellite, you can bet Ahmadinejad called his advisors and said, "I need a space program milestone announcement ASAP!" Ahmadinejad doesn't want his people, or the world, to think he's not keeping up with poor Kim Jong-un.

    In both cases, you have countries that can barely afford to take care of their citizens, yet they are claiming to be building a full-fledged space program. Iran is a far more resource-wealthy country and its GDP is more than 10 times North Korea's, but its economy is suffering [nytimes.com] badly [nytimes.com] because of the international sanctions for its nuclear program, and the health of its people [nytimes.com] is suffering even worse. So the only reason they would make such an announcement would be to artificially inflate national pride and try to scare the rest of the world.

    Of course, Iran's people are not cut off from news from the outside world as effectively as North Korea's (despite police ripping satellite dishes off rooftops [nytimes.com] and a plan to unplug the country from the Internet [slashdot.org]), so this could backfire when the people protest about resources being spent on keeping monkeys breathing in space when there isn't enough air to breathe on the ground in Tehran.
    • What I'd actually be curious to know is how much of North Korea's and Iran's apparent newfound knowledge of spaceflight has come from the privatization of the space industry. I don't claim to have any inside knowledge, but it's interesting that both countries have begun making (or at least announcing) significant advances in space programs a few years after NASA cut back and private companies began popping up. I'm sure the fall of the Soviet Union resulted in an infusion of knowledge. Are unemployed NASA pe
  • by wonkey_monkey ( 2592601 ) on Monday January 28, 2013 @12:36PM (#42716185) Homepage

    Iran said it launched an Explorer rocket into space carrying a moose

    A space møøse once bit my sister...

  • Did they actually do what they claim? Wouldn't our military have detected the launch? Where would the capsule have landed -- or did they use something they could actually get back to a landing strip?

1 1 was a race-horse, 2 2 was 1 2. When 1 1 1 1 race, 2 2 1 1 2.