What with the Ukraine encroachment by Russia, followed by the diplomatic sanctions levied by the Unites States, our decision to scuttle the Shuttle is set in a stark new light.
The US built the International Space Station, and the Space Shuttle was the best operational vehicle for blasting humans into orbit (still is, by far). Under the current administration, the Orion program was nixed along with the Shuttle fleet. The old was tossed aside with the new! A novel approach to be sure.
Presently, we have nothing available to ferry American astronauts to the orbiting platform we designed and assembled.
It’s amazing how the shortsightedness of some policies becomes blatantly manifest.
When a US crew needs to get into space, it now has to be on a Russian rocket.
With Vladimir Putin doing the countdown.
AND AN UPDATE: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/10828964/Russia-to-ban-US-from-using-Space-Station-over-Ukraine-sanctions.html