Oh, the moon landing. One of our favorite conspiracy theory gems. Despite the overwhelming evidence collected and verified over the course of the last 50 years, some folks still seem dead convinced the whole thing was faked in a studio somewhere with Stanley Kubrick calling the shots. As cool as that would be, it simply isn’t so. We absolutely, 100%, beyond a shadow of a doubt went to the moon in 1969. We aren’t going to delve into all of the conspiracies regarding the moon landing…but these few have been strategically chosen due to how freaking OBVIOUS THEY MAKE IT THAT WE WENT TO THE MOON. Okay…I’m better now. Moving on.

1. Moon rocks…842 lbs to be exact.

During the Apollo missions, astronauts collected 841.6 pounds of moon rocks, 44 of which came from Apollo 11. These rocks have made the circuit from university to university, country to country – including Russia – and no one ever disputed the origin of any moon rock. They have traveled the globe and been picked over and analyzed by the greatest scientific and geological minds in the world.

Moon rock collected from the Apollo 11 Mission  
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

If there is an actual conspiracy, then every scientist from every university in every country in the world is in on this big hoax with the United States. But over the course of 50 years, not one of these folks has expressed concern.

Oh…and the moon rocks brought back from the Apollo missions were compared to the moon rocks brought back from the Soviet Luna missions, both of which were compared to moon/space rocks that came through atmosphere naturally… and it was established that they were nearly identical in composition. I guess maybe that’s because we got them when we went to the moon…period.

2. The Soviet Union, knew about it and monitored the Apollo 11 in real time…oh…and had their own probe orbiting the moon at the same time.

In the 1960s, the Soviet Union was deadlocked in an intense race to the moon with the United States. Having already successfully launched the first satellite into orbit, the Soviets held a slight edge in the Space Race department. That was until Apollo 11. As a matter of fact, at the exact time Apollo 11 was making its lunar landing, the Soviets had an unmanned craft by the name of Luna 15 hovering over the moon. It crash landed into the moon just a couple of hours before the Americans lifted off from their site on the moon.

Luna 15
Photo Credit: Wikipedia

They wanted to land Luna 15, collect samples of the surface, and then return the samples to Earth. If they had been successful, it would’ve scored a huge PR victory for the Soviet space program. The Soviets were monitoring the progress of Apollo 11 VERY closely and in real time. As the competition between these two superpowers for moon bragging rights was pretty intense, they would have had EVERY reason to cast doubt on the United States’ successful moon landing – if there were any doubt to cast. Except…well…it happened. If the Soviets couldn’t uncover any deep conspiracies surrounding the event and never doubted the validity of the landing in the slightest bit…why should any one else?

Luna 15 Orbiting the Moon, flying over Apollo 11
Photo Credit: YouTube

We’ll also add in the testimony of Sergei Khrushchev, son of Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev, who was leader of the USSR during the time of Apollo 11. The Soviets published the accomplishment in their state paper, Pravda, but also tried to downplay it in the media as a whole, as a loss to the Americans on this scale was upsetting. He also mentioned how upset his father was with the head of their space program.

Photo of Sergei Khrushchev, son of Nikita Khrushchev
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

So…the Soviets believed it happened. They could have (and probably have) inspected the landing site with high-powered telescopes, as well as inspect the landing site with any of the rovers they landed on the moon during their Luna program.

The Soviets had a legitimate space program, top-tier scientists, and were the chief competition of the US in the space race. If the US missions to the moon had been faked, or even if there were a good reason to believe that they had been faked, the Russians had the resources, the expertise, and every possible motive for exposing the fraud. They’d have laughed their asses off at us in the global press, and we’d have looked like bunch of idiots. So…tell me again why they didn’t expose this massive conspiracy?

3. Multiple third-party observatories tracked the missions in real time

In addition to our old pals the Soviets, there were multiple observatories and amateurs tracking the Apollo 11 and Luna 15 missions. So…let’s list them.

First we have the Madrid Apollo Station in Fresnedillas, Spain (near Madrid). Though this station was set up with the assistance of NASA, all of the employees were from Spain’s National Institute of Aerospace Technology. This station tracked both Apollo 8 and Apollo 11. During Apollo 11, all communications with the astronauts were received through this station. AND…the most important part, Fresnedillas was the only station in the entire Manned Space Flight Network (MSFN) that had visibility of the takeoff from the Moon.

The Fresnedillas Observatory March 1969
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Next is the Jodrell Bank Observatory in Macclesfield, England. This observatory used multiple telescopes to monitor signals from the Apollo 11 Eagle lander and the Russian Luna 15 simultaneously. Jodrell Bank observatory played a crucial role in this historic moment. The recorded all of the events of the lunar exploration AND, most importantly, they independently verified the US manned lunar landing.

Picture of Jodrell Bank Observatory from 2017
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Next up…the Bochum Observatory in Bochum, Germany. Their work goes as far back as Sputnik 1, which they detected and tracked in real time. During Apollo 11, Bochum listened in on both Apollo 11 and Luna 15, and they later shared the recorded transmissions they received from the Eagle Lunar Module at the time of touchdown.

Bochum Observatory
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

The last observatory I’ll name (though there are many more) is the Parkes Observatory in New South Wales, Australia. The Parkes Observatory used a radio telescope to receive the TV pictures being transmitted from the Apollo Eagle Lunar Module. They began receiving the images as soon as the modules camera was switched on, and eventually NASA determined that the images Parkes was receiving were of a superior quality than their own. Three stations received the signals simultaneously: Parkes, NASA’s Honesuckle Creek (also in Australia), and NASA’s Goldstone. It was Parkes’ footage that was broadcast for the world to see…not NASA’s.

The 64m radio telescope at Parkes Observatory used to receive signals from Apollo 11.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

The last third-party verification I’m going to include was not from an observatory, but from a radio technician from Louisville, Kentucky, Larry Baysinger. He worked for WHAS 840 AM radio. Using home-made equipment, Baysinger eavesdropped on the Apollo 11 Lunar Landing, recording the whole time. His accomplishment was written up in the Lousiville Courier-Journal. Baysinger’s recordings only include the transmissions from the moon, as they did not attempt to intercept the signal coming from Houston.

Larry Baysinger
Photo Credit: JCTC

So…yeah, you’ve got it right. These observatories, which all worked independently from one another and NASA and were able to simultaneously verify the lunar landing of Apollo 11 – plus all their employees – are in on the hoax.

4. Apollo 11 astronauts left reflectors on the moon and we shot lasers at them for 40 years

You may not know it, but astronauts from Apollo 11 and Apollo 14 left behind some mirror-esque prisms on the moon, known as a ‘Lunar Laser Ranging Retroreflector Array‘. From 1969 until 2009, scientists at the McDonald Laser ranging station in Texas would fire lasers at them to determine the distance between Earth and the moon. For what it’s worth, they discovered that the moon is pulling away from Earth at a rate of about 3.8 cm per year.

Pictured Left: The Lunar Laser at McDonald Observatory
Pictured Right: The Retroreflector left on the moon by Apollo 11 astronauts
Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons

5. There were 400,000 people involved. That’s one heck of a cover up.

The Apollo project involved roughly 400,000 scientists, engineers, and technicians over the course of a decade. They came from all over the United States and from countries all over the world. How, exactly, would NASA orchestrate a worldwide cover up of this magnitude, for 50 years, with not ONE SINGLE PERSON ever speaking up? Especially when the whistleblower(s) would have everything to gain. I mean, a secret can’t be kept for 5 minutes in the current White House…how would the government keep this one quiet with so many people involved? Easy answer…they didn’t.

Picture of Nikita Khrushchev, leader of the Soviet Union and President of the US John F. Kennedy, president during the creation of the Apollo Space Program.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

6. The Pictures…

So…to start:

Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

I know, I know…they were faked. It was all shot in a studio. In 1969, they had the technological/photographical/cinematographical capabilities to fake an endless void, with miles of terrain in every direction, with said terrain being of a non-earthly substance that reflects light in every which direction…

See how ridiculous that sounds? There are dozens of conspiracy theories (this guy tackles them all): about shadows being cast in multiple directions (light from the sun bouncing off a reflective surface…this couldn’t have been faked by the way. We’ll get there), Neil Armstrong appearing illuminated in a shadow (again…reflective surface), mysterious reflections (though the one above should kill that theory), no stars (go outside on a dark night with stars in the sky, get your camera, and duplicate the aperture and settings the astronauts used and let me know if you see any stars. Also…lunar daytime. The sun is brighter than the stars)…blah blah blah. The list goes on. ALL of these theories have been debunked, explained, with proof, time and again. NEXT.

7. The video equipment needed to fake this didn’t exist yet.

Simply put, if the videos (and photos, for that matter) were faked, it would’ve required the use of technology that did not exist in 1969. Emmy winning forensic motion picture analyst Mark Schubin asserts that faking the moon landing footage and images would have been harder to do than actually going to the moon, adding that it would have been impossible to fake it with 1969’s technology.

He gives a couple reasons for this. One, shadows. If you look at the shadows, they are the result of parallel sun rays with no diffusion, as the light source is 93 million miles away.  When on a flat surface, this creates parallel shadows. If studio lighting had been used, the shadows would diverge, as the light source would be quite close.

Photo Credit: YouTube

He argues that the only way to recreate this lighting condition on Earth in 1969 would be by using millions of lasers. Alright, cool. Problem…lasers in 1969 were outrageously expensive and came only in red. Had we also developed computer graphics secretly in 1969, it could have been a possibility, but that would have been an entire other program to keep secret.

And Schubin is not the only one. According to filmmaker S. G. Collins, who has worked in the film/video industry as a writer, as a director, and (mostly) as a camera man since 1978, we simply did not have the video equipment to pull off a pre-recorded, 143-minute, live lunar telecast.

This alleged faked video would have been shot on Earth, and therefore would need to be shot in slow motion to give the appearance of no/low gravity… however, at the time, the magnetic disk recorders that were used for slow motion could only shoot up to 30 sec total, played back at 90 sec of slow motion video. But, again, the lunar telecast was 143 minutes of continuous video. To slow that down, you’d need 47 minutes of continuous live-action video on disk. Which wasn’t possible with a magnetic disk recorder.

Why not film it? Well, to shoot it on film, thousands of feet of film would have needed to be spliced together from reel to reel, with negatives cut into A and B rolls, reprinted, and transferred to video – all the while making sure not to show any scratches, no grain, and not a single fleck of dust – which would give the hoax away – and then do it all again, flawlessly, for the next 5 lunar missions (only the later missions would have been twice as much work, because by then the astronaut’s cameras were shooting at a higher rate of frames per second, which would have required twice the amount of film while shooting).

Long story long, it would have been nearly impossible to pull off such delicate work, without showing a single mistake, six times in a row. But if you want to know the real specifics, Collins has an excellent video explaining his calculations, which he allegedly had confirmed by a retired video engineer who worked for CBS in the 60s and 70s.

8. For the love…the flag wasn’t waving.

When the flag was put into the ground, the rotation of the pole cause the flag’s fabric to ripple. Once placed, the flag didn’t move. Below are the two images of the flag, placed next to each other. Notice the flag stays the same? This myth was also busted on a 2008 episode of Mythbusters…just saying. The end.

Photo Credit: Public Domain/DYK

I know we didn’t get to every possible conspiracy theory regarding the Apollo 11 moon landing of 1969 (Van Allen Belt Radiation, etc), but what was presented here is pretty overwhelming evidence supporting the FACT that we did, indeed, land on the moon. Honestly, if we HAD faked it in 1969, why would we go back 5 more times in such a short period of time and potentially risk exposing our massive cover-up? There is simply NO WAY this was faked. The Soviets didn’t out us, the entire global science community didn’t out us, it was verified in real time by dozens of observatories with no connection or loyalty to NASA, it would have been a cinematographic miracle with a hard reach into the future, and, well, rocks and lasers.