The first mission in NASA’s Artemis program finally took the Orion spacecraft on a trip around the Moon – a huge step forward for the ambitious plan to bring humans to the lunar surface as soon as 2025. It’s also the beginning of the White House’s far-reaching ambitions for a permanent outpost there. Interestingly, new images on the Moon’s surface are showing glistening reflections from the Sun which is creating speculation as to what may be there now and that perhaps what we are seeing is a reflection of possible structures on the Moon. Tonight on Ground Zero, Clyde Lewis talks with space researcher, Richard C. Hoagland about DANDELIONS ON THE MOON.
When President John F. Kennedy proclaimed his wish for the United States to land a man on the moon and safely return him by the end of the 1960s, he was all caught up by Cold War syndrome.
The Soviets had been making advances in the space race, and paranoia at red exploits was catching. A godless state had launched the nerve-wracking Sputnik in 1957 and in 1961 put Yuri Gagarin into space.
While the Soviet Union is only mentioned once in his speech at Rice University, the competitive dig, the putdown, did come. The balance had to be restored.
Kennedy stated “Within these last 19 months at least 45 satellites have circled the earth. Some 40 of them were ‘made in the United States of America’ and they were far more sophisticated and supplied far more knowledge to the people of the world than those of the Soviet Union.”
When he mentions being “behind for some time in manned flight”, there is little doubt who the bogeyman to beat is. We do not, he said reassuringly to his audience, “intend to stay behind, and in this decade, we shall make up and move ahead.”
This is how to space race began — a literal push and poke like two kids on a playground wondering if they should fight or walk away.
Domestically, selling the moon mission was not popular, and the post-landing effort to scrub away voices of opposition in the historical record has been vigorous. Space historian Roger Launius notes the sentiment at the time. “Consistently throughout the 1960s a majority of Americans did not believe Apollo was worth the cost, with the one exception to this poll taken at the time of the Apollo 11 lunar landing in July 1969.”
Earthly concerns were considered more pressing. Civil rights leaders in the United States feared a loss of focus. While a million people gathered along Florida’s Space Coast to watch the launch of Apollo 11 on July 16, 1969, some 500 protestors, mostly African-American and led by Rev. Ralph Abernathy, paid a visit to the Kennedy Space Centre. He had in tow a wooden wagon and two mules, a deliciously confronting contrast between the Saturn V rocket.
“$12 a day to feed an astronaut, we could feed a child for $8,” read the protest signs.
The moon shot we know now is history –and even there are debates on whether or not the record is true. We have gone, we may not have gone, We may have gone and had astronaut doppelgangers in the studio playing Golf and high fiving each other.
But one thing is sure with all of the Cold war besting we eventually decided to get serious about space — and with all of the science fiction comics and movies that came before the reality — mankind has always wondered about what is really up there and whether on not we met aliens there — or have we found various artifacts that prove that life may have existed on the moon or Mars.
One of the popcorn movies I wanted to hate — came out in theaters a while ago and is now in my movie cue at homes in Moonfall. I watched it and believe it or not, I liked it even though the critics attacked it for being preposterous.
But isn’t science fiction supposed to be preposterous? Isn’t it supposed to challenge the idea of basic science?
Moonfall actually gives you food for thought about the Moon and what its purpose was in our solar system.
There has always been room for scientists to discuss the possibility of Megastructures on the moon or mars.. so making the moon a very advanced megastructure on its own uses a lot of imagination.
Aliens or even ancient humans could have used the moon as an outpost and if we were to investigate it further I am sure we could find techno signatures all over the moon and on other planets as well.
In the 1940s, science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke wrote a short story called ‘The Sentinel‘ for a BBC competition that was a compelling story about an alien artifact left on the moon that constantly sent signals out into deep space.
The artifact was tetrahedral in shape, made of polished metal, and has a spherical force field surrounding it. For eons, this artifact was a warning beacon to intelligent life and other space explorers that wanted to develop or come to planet Earth.
Clarke eloquently paints a picture of a powerful force that swept through space when the earth was half of its present age. The force and the roar were incomprehensible and the beacon was left on the moon to transmit a signal for millions of years. The signal was called a sentinel and it was there to watch over the earth and other worlds that could sustain life.
The pyramid that housed the beacon was eventually destroyed by a nuclear explosion. It was concluded that whoever left the beacon has to be aware that it is no longer transmitting and may return to find out why.
The story ends with a chilling speculation from the narrator:
“I can never look now at the Milky Way without wondering from which of those banked clouds of stars the emissaries are coming. If you will pardon so commonplace a simile, we have set off the fire alarm and have nothing to do but to wait. I do not think we will have to wait for long.”
NASA commissioned the Brookings Research Institute in Washington to prepare a report on the likelihood of encountering extraterrestrial life and to detail how NASA proof of extraterrestrial life should be handled. The Final 219-Page Report, published in 1960, was titled “Proposed Studies on the Implications of Peaceful Space Activities for Human Affairs.” One section was dedicated to the “Implications of a Discovery of Extraterrestrial Life.” The study is now referred to simply as “The Brookings Report.”
The report predicted that if extraterrestrial life were discovered, it could bring about “profound changes, or even the collapse of our civilization.” The report noted that such a discovery could come about at any time and that any admission of extra-terrestrial reality could incite fear in the public. It suggested that evidence of alien existence might be found in artifacts left on the moon or other planets.
They already assumed that artifacts would be found on Venus, The moon, and mars.
In a 1958 comic book, entitled “The Face on Mars”, which is the second issue of Harvey’s Comics’ Race to the Moon series, author Jack Kirby tells us how a group of explorers finds an artificial structure shaped like a human face on Mars. But not only that, after climbing it, they discover that the eyes of this construction are hollow and lead to a sort of room of visual records that shows the final destiny of the Martian civilization: an interplanetary war finished with most of the atmosphere and the few survivors took refuge in the underground kingdom.
The latter is consistent with what some planetary scientists contend now: if there was life on Mars, it would be under its surface. Something logical considering the hostile levels of radiation that hit the planet due to its weak atmosphere and the absence of a magnetosphere.
It also coincides with modern theories that hold that an ancient civilization on Mars was annihilated – as Kirby recounts – by something with the same force as a nuclear attack by another alien race. This would be supported by data on the high concentration of Xenon-129 from the Martian atmosphere, and uranium and thorium from the surface, collected by NASA’s Mars Odyssey.
This has led some theorists to think that certain authors had access to insider information that they reflected in their works in the form of fiction, filtering part of a reality hidden from the public.
Keep in mind that it was many years after Kirby wrote his famous comic about the face on Mars that several surveillance missions found something similar, captured on film.
In 1971 Mariner 9 captured images of Pyramid shaped mountains in an area called the Elysium Quadrangle. This prompted California scientist Dr. James Hurtak to speculate that where there are pyramids there has to be a Sphinx.
Five years later, the twin satellite probes of NASA’s Viking Mars Mission sent back 50,000 photographic images of the planet’s surface.
Including Frame 35A72 of the Cydonia region which appeared to show an entire city of Pyramids similar to those found in Elysium. There was also what appeared to be a gigantic face 1.6 miles long by 1.2 miles wide.
The humanoid face looked like a partially buried Sphinx. The odds of such a face being created by random erosion were astronomical.
Richard C. Hoagland is best known for his work on Cydonia and the so-called Face and pyramids of Mars, and the links between the Cydonia region and Ancient Egypt were probably the first exposure I ever had to ancient aliens.
It is also the first exposure most people had to the idea of monuments or structures on Mars and later the idea of Structures on the Moon.
Back before Avi Loeb received a lot of attention for his opinions on Oumuamua, he appeared on Ground Zero and spoke of something else that intrigued him about new missions to the moon and to Mars. He believed that these two celestial spheres were like spider webs and that they may have been able to capture what he called relics or artifacts that would change the way we view our position in the universe.
He stated that he had an interest in what he called Space archeology where we explore the moon and the planets on the solar system for signs of ancient life, and technological relics that may indicate that civilizations thrived in space at one time or that they may have gone underground and that this is why we have not detected them yet.
“To me, the most interesting thing to do would be to do space archaeology, which is similar to digging into the ground, except you dig into space and you search for relics, for burnt-out surfaces of planets, for artifacts on other planets. That’s an interesting future frontier, finding relics of dead civilizations out there.”
But the big question is that if we have advanced equipment that finds these artifacts on distant planets are we looking at relics of an alien civilization or are we looking at a human civilization that existed in our long distant past?
What would that do to the tangent universe?
There are good reasons to seriously consider the possibility that at some point in the Earth-Moon system’s 4.5 billion-year-old history, an alien intelligence may have passed through our solar system; leaving physical artifacts of their visits.
These artifacts would likely entail more than just alien-spaced detritus, and would arguably include evidence of alien scientific or industrial activity, such as extremely advanced lunar mining, energy generation; even technology related to lunar nearside Earth reconnaissance.
There is no reason why they would not set up moon bases or bases on other planets leaving behind massive structures that we have yet to show — but have probably already discovered in our various visits to the planets and to the moon.
There was a time when we took it for granted that humans were alone in the universe at the top of the evolutionary heap — above us were only the angels. But decades of science fiction have surely undermined that. Given the number of alien contact movies in the past few decades, it is more likely that angels visiting Earth would be greeted as aliens than aliens visiting Earth would be greeted as angels.
This may be a problem philosophically and it is quite likely the reason why science loves to ignore the data about ancient life on Mars or even possible structures left behind on the Moon or on Martian soil.
Certainly, the surprisingly low-key response to what in the past would have been earthshaking UFO revelations suggests that we’re psychologically ready to handle alien contact without the kind of trauma that might have marked an earlier time. And let’s face it, if they’re coming, the 21st century is the perfect year for them to arrive, since all of the hints from scientists and the government have piled one unlikely event on top of another.
The first mission in NASA’s Artemis program finally took the Orion spacecraft on a trip around the moon, a huge step forward for the ambitious plan to bring humans to the lunar surface as soon as 2025. It’s also the beginning of the White House’s far-reaching ambitions for a permanent outpost on the moon.
However new images from the Moons surface are showing that it looks a bit different than t did when Astronauts first arrived on the moon in the 1960s. There seem to be some glistening reflections from the sun that are shimmering and there seems to be a bit of speculation as to what may be there now — and that perhaps what we are seeing refections of possible structures on the moon.
The White House’s national science and technology council last week released its new “National Cislunar Science and Technology Strategy,” a wide-ranging document that explains the Biden administration’s objectives for cislunar space, which is the area under the gravitational influence of the Earth and the moon. The strategy outlines four primary goals that, broadly, seem to make a lot of sense. They include investing in research and development, cooperating with other countries, building communications networks in space, and boosting humanity’s overall situational awareness near and on the moon.
What this plan also hints at, however, is a range of open legal, political, and environmental questions about how life on the lunar surface should work.
Now there seems to be a race to the moon — something that only existed during the space race — but now there is something out there that seems to be a motivation for quick response.
The United States, for example, is interested in how to use the far side of the moon, a shielded zone of the moon that doesn’t experience radio frequencies coming from Earth, to make new types of astronomical observations. Developing resources and technology on the lunar surface could eventually make it easier to launch future missions to Mars.
But the government is interested in the moon for reasons that go far beyond expanding humanity’s knowledge of the universe. The White House’s new strategy emphasizes the “economic development activities” and “economic growth” available in cislunar space and on the moon, and also outlines the government’s political goals, including “realizing US leadership.”
It’s very clear that this is not just about the research and the science, this like everything else the government touches becomes a political tool-wagging contest.
Should the US succeed in its goals, the moon could eventually look quite different.
Lunar orbit would be filled with many more satellites, including a lunar GPS network and a human space station capable of housing human astronauts that serve as a rest stop before they land on the moon’s surface. While there are no plans for a lunar city, there are proposals for a permanent outpost on the south pole of the moon, where crews might one day spend six-month rotations (China and Russia have announced plans for a lunar outpost, too). If NASA has its way, the lunar surface might eventually include a series of nuclear power plants, a resource extraction operation, and even something akin to the moon internet. Given these plans, the US government estimates that the level of human activity in cislunar space over the next decade could exceed everything that’s happened there between 1957 and today, combined.
But the White House’s plans face several hurdles. Political tensions alone could be a major source of conflict.
For one, there still isn’t a globally shared vision for what the future of the moon should entail. Just over 20 countries have signed the US-led Artemis Accords, a set of principles for, among other things, exploring and using the lunar surface. The former head of Russia’s space agency, unsurprisingly, said that the country would not support the Artemis program in its current form, and Congress has barred NASA from working with China since 2011. And while the White House continues to emphasize international collaboration and the moon itself is pretty large — it’s just under 15 million square miles — multiple countries could end up sparring over the same resources, like one particular landing location or a certain trove of materials.
These tensions could even impact an effort to create a common understanding of what’s going on in cislunar space, which is one of the government’s major goals. The White House has said it wants to expand access to data about space weather and satellite tracking in order to help with the emerging problem of satellite traffic management, and also create a catalog of all the objects on the moon. But it’s not clear how that will happen.
Again this sounds like the fat kid eying the banquet, putting a ton of food on his plate, and only eating the pie.
Perhaps they saw something on the moon that needs immediate attention. Something that would vindicate both Richard C. Hoagland and Avi Loeb.
Of course, we have to dig through all of the other junk that the astronauts and NASA have left on the moon.
The lunar surface is already littered with items that astronauts have left behind, including golf balls and nearly 100 bags of poop. Humans have also figured out ways to trash the moon without actually visiting. NASA purposely smashed a robotic spacecraft into the lunar surface in 2009 in a bid to study potential sources of water on the moon, and this past March, space junk believed to be from a Chinese rocket mission in 2014 crashed into the lunar surface. Space environmentalists are worried that some of the same environmental destruction that humans have created on Earth could become a problem on the moon and in its lunar orbit.
We have already contaminated the moon — that is if the moon can be contaminated.
The Artemis-era space age will come with major challenges. As humanity ventures deeper into space — and onto the moon — humans risk introducing the same issues that we still haven’t worked through here on Earth, including conflict between countries, damaging the environment, and even the challenge of preserving our history.
It would be a shame if we found dandelions on the moon and someone decided to pull them out — or if some of the footprints on the moon get erased in the process.
SHOW GUEST: RICHARD C. HOAGLAND
Richard C. Hoagland is the Principal Investigator and Founder of The Enterprise Mission as well as the Vision and the Voice of The Other Side of Midnight. He is the recipient of the Angstrom Medal, the former science advisor to CBS News and Walter Cronkite, and the author of best-selling books, “The Monuments of Mars” and the “Dark Mission: The Secret History of NASA.”
Together with Carl Sagan, Mr. Hoagland co-
Richard’s show, The Other Side Of Midnight, airs Live Saturday & Sunday – Midnight to 3am, Eastern, 9pm to Midnight, Pacific time.