Was the moon landing faked by the U.S. Government?

Moon landing: Giant leap forward or a giant hoax?

One of the biggest conspiracy theories levelled at the U.S. Government in modern times has been that they faked the moon landing.

The U.S. at the time was caught up in a cold war arms race with the Soviet Union. Each side was desperate to out-perform the other. A moon landing, it seems, would have been the ultimate victory for one of the sides.

American citizens claimed that hstoric victory on July 20 1969 when Neil Armstrong became the first man to walk on the surface on the moon. But did he?

Neil Armstrong waves to the camera after pitching the U.S. flag. But is it actually on the moon?
Neil Armstrong waves to the camera after pitching the U.S. flag. But is it actually on the moon?

Ever since the day in question there have been dozens of reasons and explanations put forward as to why the moon landings in the Apollo mission were faked by Nasa, the U.S. Government and a number of other organisations with vested interests.

In fact, between six and 28 per cent of people in different countries said in polls that they still believe the landings were a hoax, an elaborate stage-manage illusion that duped the world.

There is an overwhelming amount of evidence that has been put forward by people who claim the lunar landing was stage. In fact, there's another for a whole book and the has indeed been many books written about the moon landing.

It would be impossible to cover every motive and every piece of evidence here, but instead there will be a brief overview of the main points. Anybody wishing to look into the topic even further can do more research online with some of the links provided or they can buy one of the books that are suggested at the bottom of the page.

The high quality pictures, the fluttering flag and the lack of a blast crater from the craft are among the conspiracy theories
The high quality pictures, the fluttering flag and the lack of a blast crater from the craft are among the conspiracy theories

Motives

A number of motives have been put forward. These include beating Russia in the 'Space Race'. Other suggestions are that Nasa needed to prove its worth in order to receive continued funding. A moon landing meant that it would continue to receive money from the Government.

Another theory is that the moon landings were a distraction from domestic affairs and foreign affairs. The most controversial of these was the Vietnam War, which led to mass protests in the U.S. and around the world.

Evidence for a conspiracy

A series of pictures were released by Nasa that they claimed had been taken during the landing of the Apollo mission. Each photograph has since been painstakingly analysed over the decades for any traces of forgery.

Dark: A picture from the Apollo mission shows no stars in the sky
Dark: A picture from the Apollo mission shows no stars in the sky

Stars are not visible in the photos of the moon landings

Surely on a trip to the moon, one would expect to see a stunning array of stars glistening down from space. They have, after all, got one of the best views in our scientifically-known universe and there aren't any street lights to outshine them.

According to the scientists, the Apollo landings happened during lunar daytime. This is the equivalent of daytime on earth where we, too, are unable to see stars. Nasa says that the stars were outshone by the sun reflecting off the moon's surface.

The photograph's are too high-quality to have been taken on the moon

Critics suggest that the atmospheric conditions on the moon would create pictures that are grainy and blurred. But those produced by the astronatuts were of an excellent standard.

Nasa claims that many of the pictures were poor quality, but it simply chose to publish those that gave the best amount of detail. They also say that the photographic equiplment used by the astronauts was of an incredibly high standard, to be precise a high resolution Hasselblad 500 EL/M Data cameras with Carl Zeiss optics and a 70-mm film magazine.

Blowin' in the wind: The moon landing flag
Blowin' in the wind: The moon landing flag

The flag is waving on the moon, but there's no wind up there

One of the most often cited pieces of evidence is that in picture the U.S. flag appears to be fluttering. On the moon, there is no wind, not even a gentle breeze. Conspiracy theorists claim that the scenes were filmed on earth where wind would have caused the movement.

Nasa says that the flag was unfurled from the top of the pole, and that the pictures were taken during this stage. For this reason, it appears to be moving. They also claim that because the flag had been kept in storage during the Apollo voyage, it was crumpled when they brought it out, and that the creases are what look like movement from wind.


There are no blast craters in the dust

The pictures show that there are no blast craters OR dust scatter left from the moon landers on the surface. Many people would have expected the powerful force of the engines and the exhaust fumes from the rockets to have pushed away the dust below them, leaving a significant mark.

Nasa puts forward a complex argument relating to the force of the propulsion and the lack of the gravity on the moon. Essentially they say that the landing craft would have floated down so softly that they touched down very smoothly without causing a disruption to the surface of the moon.

Undisturbed: A picture of the Apollo moon landing craft shows there are no marks in the moon's dust surface
Undisturbed: A picture of the Apollo moon landing craft shows there are no marks in the moon's dust surface

Nasa's latest piece of evidence

Earlier this year, a Nasa released pictures that it said its craft had taken of the moon's surface.

They say that the photographs from the Lunar Reconnaisance Orbiter (LRO) show astronaut footprints alongside the lunar rover and spacecraft scorch marks.

The initial photographs were taken in 2009 from a height of 31 miles above the moon's surface. A second set were produced in 2011 when the craft made another flight over the site, but this time from a height of 13 miles.

The square to the left apparently shows debris and litter from the Apollo craft that was left on the moon
The square to the left apparently shows debris and litter from the Apollo craft that was left on the moon
Nasa claims that these are footprints that were left by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin in 1975
Nasa claims that these are footprints that were left by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin in 1975
This picture claims to show the descent stage and a scorch mark left on the moon. There was no scorch mark in the original 1975 moon landing pictures
This picture claims to show the descent stage and a scorch mark left on the moon. There was no scorch mark in the original 1975 moon landing pictures

Nasa say they are the best pictures yet and give the clearest view f where the astronauts went.

Nasa research scientist Noah Petro said that at the Apollo 17 Lunar rover landing site it's possible to see where the craft parked on the surface.

He added that from the pictures it's even possible to see where the lunar rover drove around and where the astronauts kicked up dust when they walked on the surface.

Because the moon is in a vacuum and there are limited atmospheric and weather conditions, it is thought by scientists that the surface will have remained undisturbed since the apparent landings from the Apollo space mission in 1969.

Moon landing videos

More by this Author


Comments 16 comments

Joyus Crynoid profile image

Joyus Crynoid 5 years ago from Eden

You might want to read up on history and check your facts. The first lunar landing (Apollo 11) was in 1969, not in 1975. The last (Apollo 17) was in 1972.


sparkster profile image

sparkster 5 years ago from United Kingdom

And Apollo 18 never happened even though the astronauts involved went missing.

George Adamski had accurate photos of the moon (showing an atmosphere) before Neil Armstrong even got there.

Armstrong once stated they were being watched by someone more advanced than us technologically all the time they were on the moon and that the CIA were responsible for the cover-up.

Oh, what to believe!


Rickrideshorses profile image

Rickrideshorses 5 years ago from England Author

Sparkster, that's fascinating. There's always so many plausible explanations for everything it seems hard to know for sure.


ruffridyer 5 years ago from Dayton, ohio

I was tempted to click "Funny" on the comments since I don't believe the moon landing was faked. But I went with "interesting" instead. The idea that the moon's atmosphere would affect the picture quality begs the question, What Atmosphere? Are people refering to the massive dust storms caused by the NON existant winds?!

Also, if the landings were faked wouldn't the thousands of telescopes from around the world noticed no moon landing?

A friend of mine claims the landing could not happen because Nasa computers in 1969 were much too primative compared to today. So by his logic Christopher Colombus never made it across the atlantic because he only had wooden ships with sails, not nuclear engines on steel vessels.


sparkster profile image

sparkster 5 years ago from United Kingdom

John Lear claims that the moon has something like 64% of the atmosphere of Earth. George Adamski's photo's were accurate portrayals of the moon (before Armstrong got there) but there was also trees and smoke rising from one of the craters. A scientist who studied the photo said the smoke indicates there must be atmosphere.

I also read a hub a day or two ago that said Columbus sailed to America and turned 8 million people into slaves to mine for gold. He also had a USO/UFO sighting.


Infinite712 4 years ago

So many people love these ridiculous conspiracy theories. I guess it's because they're bored. Reality is too boring for them.


Rickrideshorses profile image

Rickrideshorses 4 years ago from England Author

With the moon landing, the assassination of JFK, the death of Michael Jackson, the collapse of the Twin Towers on September 11, there are always explanations and evidence put forward that it was carried out by the world's elite, governments, bankers etc etc. Guess we'll never know for certain.


iwanzz profile image

iwanzz 4 years ago from Tasikmalaya

useful


Stuart. Arter 4 years ago

British and American governments / press have lied to us for years, weapons of mass destruction, The Assasination of kennedy, phone hacking etc why does it seem so outlandish that the Americans would fake the moon-landings ? 9/11 was surly the start of the American quest for oil. Was the space race all but lost for the americans at the time Sputnik,Gregarin,etc. "There are none so blind as those who will not see"


Stuart. Arter 4 years ago

British and American governments / press have lied to us for years, weapons of mass destruction, The Assasination of kennedy, phone hacking etc why does it seem so outlandish that the Americans would fake the moon-landings ? 9/11 was surly the start of the American quest for oil. Was the space race all but lost for the americans at the time Sputnik,Gregarin,etc. "There are none so blind as those who will not see"


ThePelton profile image

ThePelton 4 years ago from Martinsburg, WV USA

The moon landing was real. Someone asked if it was, why couldn't you see stars in the sky? The reason you couldn't see the stars was because the sun was up, and just like on earth, you can't see stars when the sun is up! It is too bright, and drowns them out.

As for the flag, it was wrinkled, and it was held up by a metal rod at the top. That's why the top is perfectly straight.


VaggelisL 4 years ago

Did you really see" the sun shine? 'Cause there's no photo showing the sun or even something indicating the sun was present. If I'm wrong, please DO correct me and show us some (even ONE) photo showing or proving there WAS the Sun.


PEMPI 4 years ago

MOON LANDING, 9/11, WMD's ALL BS!

MINING ASTEROIDS - THE US GOVT, JAMES CAMERON ALL IN ON IT. WHILE THE SHEEPLE LOOK AT THE STARS THEY ARE STEALING THE GOLD AND OIL FROM UNDER OUR NOSES! CAMERON'S TITANIC MOVIE WAS ABOUT MAKING YOU BELIEVE THAT HE WAS INTERESTED IN A SHIP THAT SANK 100 YEARS AGO. HIS SUBSEQUENT MISSIONS WERE NOTHING MORE THAN OIL PROSPECTING IN THE ATLANTIC. NOW THEY TALK OF PRACTICING THEIR ASTEROID MINING TECHNIQUES ON THE MOON. THE US GOVT HAD KNOWN FOR YEARS THAT THE MOON IS MINERAL RICH AND JUST NEEDED TO FABRICATE THE RIGHT STORY TO FINALLY GO THERE!


ThePelton profile image

ThePelton 4 years ago from Martinsburg, WV USA

The sun was too intense. If they had aimed the camera at the sun, it would have damaged the camera, not to mention hurt the astronaut's eyes. Also, there were no scortch marks under the module because there was no oxygen to combine with available minerals such as carbon to cause the scortch marks.


Greekgeek profile image

Greekgeek 4 years ago from California

There's plenty of photos of all the Apollo landers -- at least, the legs left behind -- the lunar rover, the various pieces of equipment, astronaut and rover tracks, even the jettisoned stage from Apollo 13 on the moon, at better resolution than what you show above. Of course, the hoaxers just keep adjusting their conspiracy theories every time they're disproven, so these photos won't satisfy naysayers. It's pretty bizarre growing up with the space program and knowing how it was done, to hear the weird theories people come up with.

Recent photos from the Lunar Reconnaisance Orbiter even show shadows from all the flags that are still standing (Apollo 11's got knocked over by the blast during takeoff.) Japanese and Chinese missions have also reported spotting traces of some of the Apollo missions.

You might try watching the Mythbusters episode on moon hoaxes. They used the same kind of plastic flag in a vacuum chamber, and it did indeed wave for quite some time after being set up, since it's crinkly material and there's zero air friction to slow down the vibrations from set-up.

But the kicker? On one of the missions, they set up a special reflective mirror pointed back at Earth. If you aim a high-powered laser at it with a light detector, you get the laser's bounce back ONLY when you aim it right at that mirror; the moon's surface isn't reflective enough. I saw this while visiting an observatory as a kid. (My grandma was an astronomer.) It's a pretty simple test that's been available all along, even before the last five years worth of photos showing the various landers and scientific arrays on the moon as seen from space.


Abhinav Narang profile image

Abhinav Narang 2 years ago from Amritsar, Punjab, India

Good hub rick. I already knew of the blowing flag conspiracy, but not about the blast crater, the absence of stars. Interestingly, it wasn't even possible to build such a high resolution camera in 1969. So to me, now it really seems to me a fake milestone. Anyway, thanks for sharing such controversial information.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working