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Former NASA Chief: Russia Holding U.S. Spaceflight ‘Hostage’

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Mike Griffin warns that reliance on Russian spacecraft threatens American involvement with the International Space Station. (NASA via Getty Images)

Mike Griffin warns that reliance on Russian spacecraft threatens American involvement with the International Space Station. (NASA via Getty Images)

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Co. (CBS Tampa) – Former NASA administrator Mike Griffin says relying on the Russians to supply the International Space Station is just like a “hostage situation,” reports Space.com.

Mike Griffin made his comments in May during an ABC News interview at the National Space Symposium.

“If it wishes to do so, Russia can decide that there are no more Russian rocket engines coming to the United States and that no more U.S. astronauts will launch to the International Space Station, he said in the interview. “They can make that decision on their own.”

Since the end of the Space Shuttle program, NASA has been depending on Russian Soyuz spacecraft to deliver supplies and crew members.

The space agency is contracting private companies to develop spacecraft that can go to and from the space station by the year 2017.

But until then, warns Griffin, American participation in the station is at the mercy of the Russians. “Right now, our ability to get into space on our own power and with our own goods and services, we’re in a hostage situation,” he said.

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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