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Dark Mission: The Secret History of NASA Paperback – 2009
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Book Review by Dr. Ali Fant, WB5WAF, 12DE2007
This review is from the perspective of a former NASA Manned Spaceflight Controller, so it is more technical than expository. I first encountered Hoagland's claims through the NASA Technical Alert Briefing viewed by many controllers at the Johnson Space Center in 1989-90, found his claims creditable, and then discovered the briefing tape "disappeared" from the closed JSC Technical Library - from both the open card catalog and the closed shelf listing catalog. As a former university library page, I was shocked to find all references to the briefing tape we controllers viewed were gone two years later. When I began investigating the matter, I was told in no uncertain terms to cease any search for the missing library records.
Key Findings from Dark Mission:
1. NASA is a defense agency of the US Government per the original agency charter.
2. NASA withholds data of non-human intelligence for the good of human society per "Brookings."
3. Brookings Institution advised US in 1959 report "Proposed Studies on the Implications of Peaceful Space Activities for Human Affairs" to beware social-economic chaos resulting from alien artifacts found on the Moon or Mars as the 1938 "War of the Worlds" radio broadcast traumatized America.
4. Arthur C. Clarke based the 1968 novel/film "2001: A Space Odyssey" on the Brookings Report.
5. According to Clarke's 1968 Playboy Magazine interview, Stanley Kubrick quoted from Brookings in the film. The following movie dialog being based upon the "Brookings Report":
"I'm sure you're aware of the extremely grave potential for cultural shock and social disorientation contained in the present situation, if the facts were prematurely and suddenly made public without adequate preparation and conditioning. Anyway, this is the view of the [Space] Council... there must be adequate time for a full study to be made of the situation before any thought can be given to making a public announcement. Oh yes ... as some of you know, the Council has requested that formal security oaths be obtained in writing from everyone who has any knowledge of this event." -- Dr. Heywood Floyd, 2001: A Space Odyssey.
6. As a Manned Spaceflight Controller for NASA's last publicly acknowledged military shuttle mission, I remember taking this formal security oath to safeguard information on such flights. However, unlike all other US Government security oaths I have had in my lifetime, the NASA oath was never "terminated." That is, I never went through a formal debriefing. I questioned this lack of a debrief with NASA Security at the time and was told the Security office was already disbanded and no debriefing would be held.
7. Hoagland's retelling of the "Monuments of Mars" matches the NASA Alert Briefing the controllers and I saw in 1989-90 in the now "non-existent" tape from the JSC Technical Library.
8. Hoagland's explanation of "hyperdimensional physics" is too complex to be included here. Suffice it to say that I have studied the data, examined the historical connections between Oliver Heaviside (1850-1925), James Maxwell (1831-1879), Nikola Tesla (1856-1943), Thomas E. Bearden (1930-), Bruce DePalma (1935-1997), and Harold E Puthoff (1936-); and found the evidence convincing.
9. The multiple-sourced, publicly available NASA photographs of the pyramids, buildings, and connecting roads between the structures on Mars demonstrate the presence of ancient peoples on the planet. This is old news to most space news junkies. Second Astronaut on the Moon, Buzz Aldrin even released a "fiction" book Encounter With Tiber (1996) incorporating many of these Mars details. Aldrin's book had a storyline about ancient lunar structures being discovered by Apollo Astronauts. Arthur C. Clarke (surprise!) even wrote the foreword to Aldrin's book. Because the story line is fiction, any revealed details would not violate Aldrin's formal security oath. This was the same approach Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) took with his book "proving" the revolution of the planets - the book was originally written as a work of fiction. Unfortunately, the Catholic Church did not appreciate the humor of Galileo putting the words of the Pope into the mouth of Simplico (the fool).
10. And, just in case you missed it, there is a connection between NASA's Werner Von Braun and the Disney World "Mission to the Moon" (later restaged as "Mission to Mars," and featured in the excellent Disney produced films "Forbidden Planet" and "Mission to Mars." The latter film's climax is the "Face On Mars." However, coincidences do not make conspiracies.
11. Hoagland does an excellent job detailing the "Operation Paper Clip" removal of Nazi Germany rocket scientists to Texas as detailed in the James Michener's book and 1985 mini-TV series "SPACE" - even including National Archives photographs of Von Braun in his black SS uniform alongside Reichsfuhrer Heinrich Himmler. The occult history of Hitler is well documented by other authors, but Hoagland claims the occult influence extended from the SS to Von Braun to even the selection of NASA Mission Patches.
12. Hoagland sees a connection between Freemasonry (33rd degree), Von Braun\Disney production film "Man in Space," and the "fiction" film's representation of an alien base on the farside of the Moon. It is just another coincidence that CIA Remote Viewer Ingo Swann saw an operational alien base in the same location prior to 1998.
13. The spiritual aspects of UFOlogy, Adolf Hitler's birthday (April 20), 19.5 degrees location of planetary "hotspots" (on the Earth, the Moon, Mars, Jupiter, etc), the number 33 (Launch Complex 33, Shuttle Runway 33, 333 degrees from Egypt's Great Pyramid at Giza leads to JPL in California), and more and more numbers are overwhelmingly discussed by Hoagland in detail.
14. Finally, the greatest surprises in Hoagland's book are in the last ninety pages. These last few pages contain the explosive description of Lunar ruins, mechanical artifacts, and even an (I kid you not) ancient robot head not unlike the one shown in the Star Trek: The Next Generation Mark Twain episode of "Time's Arrow" when Data discovers his death lies in the past of San Francisco. The color photographs Apollo 17 Astronauts Eugene Cernan (1934-) and Harrison Schmitt (1936-) took of the robot head in Crater Shorty have recently been released to Italian websites by NASA. Italy? Hey, the Catholic Church is headquartered in that nation ... just another coincidence. Hoagland postulates that the mechanical head could have easily been transported back to Earth.
15. Other NASA photographs show crystal domes once covered many of the Maria on the Moon. Apollo 10 photographed at least one unbroken crystal dome, blacked-out in the official NASA print catalog, but if ordered by anyone today shows the intact dome. Since the 1990s, many researchers are specifically ordering these "black-out" lunar catalog prints to be stunned by what actually arrives in the mail. Hoagland publishes many of the photographs.
16. Remember when Apollo 17 deliberately crashed the ascent stage into the Moon to measure the moonquakes using previously implanted seismic monitors? Such a moonquake map would show the placement of the newly revealed structures on the NASA photographs. However, after more than thirty years, the results still remain classified - on a civilian scientific Moon mission.
17. Hoagland's book is having an effect on NASA today. Last year, NASA engineers suddenly "found" high-quality TV recordings of the Apollo 11 mission in Australia. Then, high quality "close-to-the-original" Apollo photographs were released to international public websites detailing the shattered crystal domes on the Moon. Next, NASA began posting thousands of never-before-seen "best" scanned pictures. This year (2007), NASA released for the first time the truly spy-camera quality photographs of the "Face on Mars" - showing details down to 11 inches. The vehicle and wheel tracks of the Opportunity Rover are clearly visible, as is the Face.
18. Living astronauts refuse to comment on much of Hoagland's expose citing various reasons. Apparently, even the Coast-to-Coast Radio Show scheduled a "debate" between Hoagland and an astronaut, but the astronaut cancelled the engagement at the last minute.
19. Twice flown astronaut, war hero, and Senator John Glenn requested a March 2001 appearance on the television NBC comedy Frasier. In the unusual episode, Glenn makes some very-unfunny comments directly to the viewing audience (out of earshot of Frasier and Roz) that are significance enough to repeat here: "Back in those glory days, I was very uncomfortable when they asked, you know, were you alone out there? We never gave the real answer, and yet we see things out there, strange things, but we know what we saw out there. And we couldn't really say anything. The bosses were really afraid of this, they were afraid of the `War of the Worlds' type stuff, and about panic in the streets. So, we had to keep quiet. And now we only see these things in our nightmares, or maybe in the movies, and some of them are pretty close to being the truth."
20. Astronaut Neil Armstrong began his highly emotional address on 20JL1994 at the White House with the statement that he compared himself to a parrot - saying only what he had been told to say. Armstrong ended his strange remarks with the phrase "truth's protective layers."
21. Astronaut Alan Bean draws his colorful Moonscapes paintings with diagonal markings perhaps to show the presence of shattered glass domes fragments.
22. Don't be too hard on the astronauts. I know former NASA employees who have had their lives thrown into turmoil by losing retirement pensions or having unexpected deaths.
23. Dark Mission lacks an index and perhaps the second edition will include one. I am reminded of the United States Central Intelligence Agency selling their entire data collection on Remote Viewing (on CD-ROMS) without an index. An index would have made it too easy for someone, somewhere to censor Hoagland's book.
24. Recent Moon News: Japan SELENE arrived Moon 05OC2007, China CHANGLE arrived Moon 27NV2007, India CHANDRAAYAN to arrive Moon 2008, US LRO to arrive Moon 2008, Russia Lunar Rover to arrive Moon 2010, and US GRAIL to arrive Moon 2011.
25. After thirty years of no manned missions to the Moon, why the sudden race for governments to return there? Even in the midst of a major war in the Middle East, governments are making a decision to return to the Moon as soon as possible. Check out the recently released Apollo photographs on the web and decide for yourself.
I've been interested in Richard Hoagland's work for a number of years, since he took on the cause of the "Face on Mars" and I've enjoyed exploring his website (enterprisemission.com), with its fascinating theory of hyperdimensional physics and his evidence that there are ruins of a civilization in the Cydonia region of Mars. Hoagland may sound like a nut but he puts forth an interesting and at times, convincing, case. Along with colleague Mike Bara, he has finally put it all together in this book, which persuasively argues that NASA is not quite what it seems to be. The book is liberally illustrated, with NASA's own photos along with others.
Let's get right to what Hoagland alleges in this book. While he's best known for his theories about Mars, Hoagland also tackles NASA's missions to the moon. He claims that the astronauts found ruins on the moon, specifically evidence of domes that once covered large portions of the surface. He backs this up with photos showing strange lines and markings in the sky over portions of the moon. Some of these photos come from a former NASA employee, Ken Johnston, who had worked at NASA as a test pilot and later was in charge of cataloging and storing photos from the moon flights. Johnston was shocked to be told one day by his superiors to destroy "all the copies of the original lunar photography" from the Apollo program. Instead, Johnston kept a set of the photos. He later contacted Hoagland and showed him the prints (mostly taken by the astronauts with a Hasselblad camera). Many of the other images (all of the Mars pictures) are digital, and the arguments about the "raw data" are highly technical. The arguments as to the validity of these photos relates to the types of processes and manipulation you can perform with digital images, but it comes down to this: it is fairly easy, with the aid of good photo editing software, to alter images to remove anything you don't want anyone to see. Is that what NASA has done with its Mars images?
I kept thinking that if our astronauts had found evidence of previous visitations and habitation on the moon, wouldn't someone eventually say something? Hoagland contends that there have been hints from the men who went to the moon, but that NASA would have many means of keeping them loyal - and quiet. He cites the Brookings Report, written in 1959 to comment on the implications of exploring space, which reported that there was a near-certainty that such exploration would find intelligent life. The report recommended that such findings should be kept from the public, to avoid disruption to society, and Hoagland contends that that is what NASA has done. He even states that the astronauts were hypnotized when they got back to earth to help erase the memory of some of what they saw on the moon.
What about Mars? Hoagland believes the Cydonia region is full of artificial constructions, and he provides photo evidence. The Face is the best-known of the constructions, but is certainly not the only piece of evidence. And, of course, NASA has done everything it can to dissuade the public from the idea that it is actually a face. They have always dismissed it as "a trick of light and shadow." We now have pictures of Mars from a number of successful robot journeys to the Red Planet, and we have more photos of Cydonia and the Face, and the newer pictures tend to confirm the earlier hypotheses that these constructions are artificial. Many of the shapes, and the geometry of their placement, mimic monuments on Earth; pyramids, for example. This book does not get into speculation as to who built the Martian monuments or how long ago that might have been. But Hoagland's earlier book, Monuments of Mars, does speculate about connections between those monuments and ancient ruins on Earth. Another excellent book about Mars that examines the possibility of a Mars-Earth link is Graham Hancock's book, The Mars Mystery: The Secret Connection Between Earth and the Red Planet Could the ancient Martians have been us - could human beings have come to Earth from a dying planet, Mars? Could they have left messages in the monuments they constructed on Mars about our human ancestry?
Dark Mission provides us with yet another theory about the assasination of President John F. Kennedy, who initiated the program to send men to the moon. There is solid evidence that Kennedy wanted to work with the Soviets on a space program. While the popular story is that the "space race" pitted the US against our cold war enemy, the Soviet Union, that may not have been what Kennedy intended. JFK did not live to see his dream fulfilled, and the US won the race to the moon, but could the idea of working with what President Reagan years later called "the evil empire" have been sufficient motivation for someone to kill JFK? Perhaps the inclusion of this material on the Kennedy assasination will simply lead to more ridicule for Hoagland's overall theories, but it seems to me to be at least as good a motive as the others that have been suggested (the Mafia, the Cubans, the CIA, etc).
I was a huge JFK fan, so I am not offended by Hoagland's picture of him as the inspiring leader who wanted peace, not war. But I have a little more trouble with his notion that NASA is obsessed with rituals dating back to ancient civilizations and kept alive by secret societies. Are we really to make something out of the fact that many top NASA officials have been Masons (as were many astronauts, including Buzz Aldrin who brought a masonic flag to the moon)? How about the influence of Nazis, people like Werner Von Braun (and the book builds a case that he WAS a Nazi)? Does NASA really time its launches to coincide with ritual dates? I can't say they don't, but it does sound a bit crazy.
I enjoyed reading this book, even though it left me back where I started from - thinking Richard Hoagland has some interesting ideas that are worth a serious look, but not being totally convinced either. I wish the book had an index so I could quickly find information I want to check with other sources.
It is very sad to me that people are questioning whether the moon landings ever actually happened. That is sheer ignorance, but might serve NASA's purposes as disinformation in case too much comes out about what they really found on the lunar surface. Denying we went to the moon is like denying the Holocaust. As a generation that has no memory of those events take their place as world leaders, such ignorance can be easily spread. It totally stops the REAL questions we should be asking. Like these: Why haven't we gone back to the moon? What did NASA really find there? And if we do go back (as NASA is planning), will they start telling us the truth about what they find?