Both leaders of their respective defense establishments in the US and China used much the same language during a press conference to describe their meeting in Beijing. From Chinese Minister of Defense Cao Gangchuan: “I think that our dialogue has been pragmatic, candid, and productive.” From American Defense Secretary Robert Gates: “The United States has a relationship with China that is candid, constructive, and cooperative. Washington has criticized Beijing for its lack of transparency about its military buildup. Gates said that he brought up a sore subject, that of the Chinese anti-satellite test. He said in response to a question, “I raised our concerns about it, and there was no further discussion.” That’s candid.
Reports of production troubles on the SpaceX rocket that could contend for military cargo deliveries happened to coincide with a different company’s concept receiving an early nod—one that might not require a rocket at all.