You are looking at an actual photograph from the surface of the planet Venus.Â Though obtained from a NASA web page, this is not a NASA photo.Â It is a Soviet era photo.Â Try as you may, you cannot find such a photo made by a NASA spacecraft.Â Why?Â Because NASA has never made a successful landing on Venus with a craft capable of taking photos and transmitting them back to Earth.Â They did make an accidental landing of a probe (Pioneer Venus 1).Â It was accidental because the Pioneer Venus 1 dropped off 4 probes that were not designed to survive all the way down to the surfaceâ€”but one did.Â The others were destroyed by the immense heat and pressure of the atmosphere.Â So, NASA accidentally dropped something on Venus, but the Russians actually landed there.
Not only did the Russians successfully land on Venus, they did it 10 times!Â And that, my friends, is a gigantic mystery.
The Russian space scientists and engineers are among the best in history.Â They were the first to put anything at all into orbit around Earth.Â They were the first to put a man in space, and he was the first man to orbit the Earth.Â They were the first to send spacecraft to the moon.Â They were the first to build a space station and to fly it successfully.Â By the way, it was not a Mir space station.Â It was the Salyut-1 (1971) a prototype for the Almaz spy space station (1973).Â Alamaz was the code name for the spy station run using a Salyut-1 space craft.
So, with all that massive success in space, why do I say it is a mystery that they have landed successfully on Venus ten times?
Well, here is the mystery.
Leaving Earth, Venus is the next planet toward the sun.Â Letâ€™s say it is our next door neighbor on the left.Â Mars is the next planet away from the sun.Â Letâ€™s say it is our next door neighbor to the right.
When leaving the driveway and headed to the left (to Venus), Russia has tremendous success, success NASA has not had, and accomplished what NASA has not even tried.Â When Russia leaves the driveway and heads to the right (to Mars), they have an almost 90% failure rate.Â How can that even be possible?
America is hitchhiking aboard Russian spacecraft in order to transport astronauts to and from the International Space Station.Â The Russians are still flying in space and NASA is not.Â Russia is flying the Soyuz (Soviet era) spacecraft which is renowned as one of the safest and most reliable spacecraft ever flown.Â Their science and engineering is virtually peerless.Â Â Yet, there is a disturbing and mysterious fact that is inexplicable:Â they can successfully send spacecraft anywhere they wantâ€”except to Mars.
This fact is so glaringly obvious that is impossible to overlook.Â It is so out of step that it rises to the level of extremely suspicious.
Vladimir Putin has grumbled that he thinks this strange fact is due to sabotage.Â He has not stated publically whom he believes the suspect(s) to be, but he has raised the possibility that the Russian space missions to Mars are being purposely sabotaged.
Is such a thing really possible?Â We are talking about decades of Russian attempts to send spacecraft to Mars.Â If the Russian missions to Mars are being sabotaged, we are talking about a decades long operation that has remained unexposed against all odds.Â Whether the ostensible saboteurs are Russian space program insiders, or agents of a foreign government, it is rather a stretch to think such an operation could remain undiscovered over such a long period of time.Â Anything is possible, of course, but everything is not likely.
So what else could account for this strange disparity between the Russian space program to Venus and their program to Mars?Â They can land on Venus just about anytime they want while they canâ€™t even get to Mars.Â Whatâ€™s up with that?
I have no answers or solutions to this mystery, but it is a mystery that certainly has my attention.Â It is a mystery that genuinely merits investigation.
Â©2012 by Kevin W. Smith.
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