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Re: AMSAT is being torn apart

On Thu, 18 Jun 1998, Boza, Tom wrote:

> With the failure again to launch P3D, after reading postings
> on AMSAT-BB, it clearly appears AMSAT is being torn apart and 
> is in jeopardy as an organization with its membership.

I must differ with that statement.  It's would be like judging all of
amateur radio by the flame wars on rec.radio.amateur.misc and .policy.
What you're seeing is the people in AMSAT who post on the internet, not
AMSAT itself.  The Internet attracts a lot of people who habitually vent
their anger publicly, long, loudly, and without much forethought.  

I, too am very upset by this latest development.  However, we are indeed
not a "real" paying customer of ESA.  ESA's need for Ariane 5 to appear
commercially viable with big-bucks paying customers has outweighed any
moral authority our long-term relationship with ESA and measly $1 million
has.  I do not blame AMSAT or its officers for this, and they continue to
have my full support.

However, now AMSAT has been hurt twice by ESA, once with 502, and now with
503. I hope and trust our AMSAT leadership will hammer this point as
strongly as possible in further negotiations.  What leaves an especially
bad taste is that ESA cancelled AMSAT's contract on the grounds that Phase
3D "missed its "deadline"--since this was caused by ESA's eleventh-hour
change of the stress requirements on 502).

What matters in the long run is that we get Phase 3D into orbit.  Once it
does, the delays won't matter.  Meantime, there are other birds to play
with--I've had great QSOs on Oscar 10 recently. 


Peter A. Klein  (pklein@seattleu.edu)  :    -----==3==      ---      ---
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