'America the Beautiful' accompanies China launch

AP News
Posted: Sep 30, 2011 2:54 AM
'America the Beautiful' accompanies China launch

China's state broadcaster isn't saying why the station ran the music to "America the Beautiful" during the gala live broadcast of the country's latest space launch.

Strains of the famed American patriotic tune rang out following the launch of the Tiang Gong-1 experimental space station module late Thursday night.

It wasn't clear why the music had been picked or whether CCTV producers were aware of the origins of the song, whose lyrics include the lines "America! America! God shed His grace on thee."

An operator answering phones at CCTV's Beijing headquarters on Friday said no spokesman was available and calls to the station's international affairs department rang unanswered.