Gazette, Billings, MT.

Sept. 18 1994

CR: R. Decker

By Michael Milstein

Gazette Wyoming Bureau

CODY, Wyo.-During a pioneering get together in a city that was once an outpost on the American frontier, independent scientists suggest a search for still-unknown outposts on the final frontier.

Wrapping up a conference in Cody this weekend, the scientists proposed a private space shot to look for proof of towers, glass domes and other alien architecture they say may be present on Mars and the moon.

"We're talking about a privately funded mission to the moon," said Richard Hoagland, prominent for his conviction that a face-like mound on Mars was built by extraterrestrial civilizations. "We're now to the point that a private mission may be not only practical, but preferable."

Since NASA has covered up evidence of the exotic structures ever since the Apollo missions of the 1960s and mainstream science dismiss suggestions of such structures as hokum, he said, it now falls to the private enterprise to take up the question.

After presenting their notions to Cody and Powell, Wyo. high school students last week, some two-dozen scientist took their presentations public on Saturday. They offered up enlarged and enhanced photographs as evidence that extraterrestrial creatures had at some point in the past, turned other planets into construction zones.

Though laymen might see only what look like ink blots or scratches on a poorly loaded roll of film, those speaking at the conference said features in the pictures are instead alien structures which they have dubbed "the city" and "the castle."

Extraterrestrial ruins on Mars, including the likeness of a giant face etched on the landscape of the red planet, led devotees to a spot on the face of the moon where they have since detected fantastic glass and metal structures, Hoagland said.

"What is this, sticking up one mile high?" said Hoagland, pointing to a blotch that looked like a vertical cloud above the moon's surface. Clouds do not occur on the moon, which has no atmosphere.

The figure, Hoagland said, is actually a seven-milehigh tower supported by a geometric matrix. There is no sign of current alien occupation on either the moon or Mars, he said, and many of the structures have been battered by meteors over the years.

Books and videotapes discussing the planetary paradoxes, plus T-shirts, were on sale in the lobby of the Cody auditorium.

Those present knocked NASA and the scientific establishment for rejecting the idea of extraterrestrial cities out of hand. Bureaucrats, they said, are afraid of how the public will react upon realizing humans are not the most advanced creatures in the universe.

Federal catalogs of photos of the moon and Mars left out those photos showing evidence of extraterrestrial structures in a deserted region called Cydonia, they said. NASA may have even sabotaged its own Mars Observer probe last year for fear of what it would find.

"We end up with conferences like this, of people shunned by their colleagues just because they're open minded," said Tom Van Flandern, an independent astronomer.

But Jack Farmer, a NASA research scientist who has examined the Martian landscape, said he remains unconvinced there are any overt signs of extraterrestrial life there.

The so-called face on Mars, farmer said, is simply an unusual landform in a region similar to Monument Valley in Arizona. Years of weathering have rounded its edges, giving it the smooth features of a face.

"You can look all over the surface in that area and see lots of shapes that may look like something familiar," he said.

But those at the Cody conference noted that they are in good company; colleagues of Galileo rebuffed his conviction that planets circle the sun and would not look through the telescope he invented and used to make dramatic discoveries about the solar system.

"Empirical evidence has no power in the face of something that is unbelievable to the masses," said Michael Zimmerman, a Tulane University professor of philosophy who spoke at the conference. "The idea that other beings are out there is a threat to the idea that we control everything in this solar system."

Those gathered in Cody included computer scientist, architects and philosophers who have never before met to discuss their shared interest in the potential of extraterrestrial life.

In an elaborate presentation that included comparisons to the ruins of ancient Greece, architect Robert Fiertek exhibited illustrations that looked like something out of a set design for Star Trek. He said the alignment of landforms on Mars match his drawings.

"They showed enough to make you wonder," said Alex Buderus, A University of Wyoming student interning at Cody High School.

If the government resists demands to send spacecraft for a close look at the odd forms on Mars and the moon, it will happen anyway, Hoagland said. With modern advancements, a moon shot might even be financed as a pay-per-view event, in which "everyone puts up a couple dollars and gets to see what's out there.