UTAH TECH UNIVERSITY'S STUDENT NEWS SOURCE | July 20, 2024

OPINION | Despite conspiracy theories, the Moon landing was real

The moon landing was a big event in history yet there are people out there who believe it was all fake. Elissa Aguayo | Sun News Daily

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While I wholeheartedly believe in our ability in space travel today, there is solid evidence and strong factors that make the first moon landing a little fishy. 

My main cause for speculation is the time period it happened. 

Red Scare

The first man-made spacecraft to reach the moon was made by the Soviets in 1959. Fearing the enemy having more claim in an untapped market like space, President John F. Kennedy committed the United States to do all it could to get ahead in 1961 with the development of the Apollo program. 

Despite their best efforts, the U.S. just couldn’t seem to catch up as the Soviets were able to perform a soft moon landing in 1966. This was the same year the U.S. was able to get a spacecraft on the moon which the Soviets were able to accomplish seven years before. 

The good ol’ red, white and blue were far behind in the race to the moon until… they suddenly weren’t. Somehow the US was able to seemingly kick things into hyperdrive and get men on the moon three years later. 

Everything happened so fast and seemed to come together so quickly for the patriots. A manned spacecraft orbited the moon in 1968. They then reached the moon in 1969, and in July of that same year landed and had men walk on the moon. 

To be able to somehow figure out one of the most complex and greatest technological achievements in the history of mankind that quickly is frankly unbelievable. 

The Soviets, who always seemed to be three steps ahead, never even got a man on the moon.

There was obvious motivation to fake this landing too. 

The moon landing was the culmination of the great “Space Race” between the Soviets and the U.S. Coming off the back of the cold war, the Cuban missile crisis happened just seven years earlier. Both nations would take any opportunity to one-up the other. 

It was a never-ending flexing of muscles as both parties tried to gain an upper hand in some way. The U.S. couldn’t afford to give the Soviets a win like this. 

Times were tense and a victory such as this would do wonders in promoting patriotism and a worldwide sweep of pro-American fever. 

Proof

There are a few pieces of evidence conspiracy theorists point to as proof of the mission being a hoax. The most famous being the waving flag.

Space exists in a vacuum, so the famous image of Buzz Aldrin planting the flag in the soil of the moon as it picturesquely waves is technically impossible in the Moon’s climate. There was no wind, so why was the flag waving? 

Another one people often bring up is the fact that we haven’t returned since 1972. If we ever really got there, why not go back? 

Conclusion 

As much as I wish I could say I was bold and stupid enough to wholeheartedly believe in this theory, I sadly can’t. I choose to believe in the landing because it is an incredible achievement and frankly, who even cares if it wasn’t real? Doesn’t affect my life in the slightest. 

However, there are interesting surrounding factors that give this theory a much stronger case than most.