The Long March-3B carrier rocket carrying China's Chang'e-3 lunar probe blasts off from Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Sichuan province, Dec. 2. (Photo/Xinhua)
Experts in China are discussing the possibility of the People's Liberation Army establishing a missile base on the moon following the successful launch of the Long March-3B rocket carrying the Chang'e-3 lunar rover on Dec. 1, according to the Beijing Times.
An expert from the China National Space Administration's Lunar Exploration Programme Center told the paper that the country plans to send its first astronaut to the moon by 2030. By 2050, the moon could become a base from which to send the country's manned spacecraft to explore deep space, the source said.
He added that the moon is the Earth's only natural satellite, and it can be transformed into a deadly weapon. Like the Death Star in the movie Star Wars, the moon could hypothetically be used as a military battle station and ballistic missiles could be launched against any military target on Earth.
Various weapons testing sites could also be established on the moon, the source said. China is currently the only nation with a lunar exploration program and the Chang'e-3 is only the beginning of a more ambitious program, the source added.