With the destruction of yet another Russian mission to Phobos,
the tiny moon of mars whose name means “terror” in ancient Greek, one may wonder who is trying to keep us from finding out what’s there. The non-onomatopoetically named “Phobos-grunt” probe (grunt means ‘ground’ in Russian) has just crashed into the Pacific Ocean. As these clippings attest, Earth’s efforts to understand Phobos are continually thwarted. Is this just bad luck or is there something more sinister involved? Many have claimed that the failure of the second Russian mission was due to a missile of some sort launched from Phobos and offer the probe’s final photo as proof. Who is hiding out on Phobos? (Or inside it as still others assert?) Who wants to keep us out of space? Of course, if I were an alien (as many claim) I certainly wouldn’t want the killer apes from Earth to start flooding my nice quiet galaxy. I would thwart their space efforts too. Read on for a taste of some of this wackiness.