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Tags: nasa | iss | astronaut | mark kelly | dmitry rogozin

Former NASA Astronaut Lashes Out at Russian Space Program Head

Scott Kelly
March 2, 2016 photo shows Scott Kelly of the U.S. after landing near the town of Dzhezkazgan, Kazakhstan. (Bill Ingalls/NASA via AP)

By    |   Friday, 11 March 2022 11:12 AM EST

A former U.S. astronaut this week got into a heated exchange over Twitter with the head of Russia's space program after he was offended by a video showing an incident aboard the International Space Station.

Former National Aeronautics and Space Administration astronaut Scott Kelly, who commanded the ISS during three separate expeditions, told The Wall Street Journal that he got into a confrontational Twitter exchange with Roscosmos Director General Dmitry Rogozin after he was "enraged" by a video of cosmonauts pasting over U.S. and Japanese flags on a Russian rocket and play acting at abandoning a NASA astronaut.

Kelly, who spent over 520 days in space and holds the record for most time in orbit for a U.S. astronaut, was referring to a video showing Russian cosmonauts as they left NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei behind on the ISS.

The Russian state media outlet that released the clip said in a caption: "The Roscosmos television studio jokingly demonstrated the possibility of Russia withdrawing from the ISS project — the undocking of the Russian segment of the station, without which the American part of the project cannot exist."

In response, Kelly sent a tweet to Rogozin, in Russian, saying, "without those flags and the foreign exchange they bring in, your space program won't be worth a damn. Maybe you can find a job at McDonald's if McDonald's still exists in Russia."

This resulted in a contentious exchange between the two that continued until Rogozin ultimately blocked Kelly on Twitter.

"It kind of enraged me that the country that we had been in this international partnership for 20 years would take the time to make a video to threaten to leave behind one of the crew members they are responsible for," Kelly said on Thursday. "They agreed to be responsible for his safety, getting him to the space station and getting him home. For me, that kind of just crossed the line."

"I believe in this program, I think it's important; I think we can hold it together,” Kelly added. "It is one place where Russia and the United States and other countries can work together peacefully. I think it has value in trying to save that."

Six other people are currently onboard the ISS along with Vande Hei, including two Roscosmos cosmonauts, one astronaut from the European Space Agency, and three more from NASA.

Theodore Bunker

Theodore Bunker, a Newsmax writer, has more than a decade covering news, media, and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


Newsfront
A former U.S. astronaut this week got into a heated exchange over Twitter with the head of Russia's space program after he was offended by a video showing an incident aboard the International Space Station.
nasa, iss, astronaut, mark kelly, dmitry rogozin
392
2022-12-11
Friday, 11 March 2022 11:12 AM
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