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Close-up of part of a photo taken by the Curiosity rover in the Martian area known
as ​Vera Rubin Ridge​ (2017).

By André R. Gignac
August, 2020
The race is on to find proof of ​microbial life​ in the solar system. With time running, deadlines
approaching, promises made about manned spaceflight to Mars, and ​new players​ from States
and from the private sector joining in, the endeavour is about to become rather pressing if
governments, space agencies and their collaborators are to find a face-saving way to free
themselves of the accumulated weight of denials about extraterrestrial life.


“Breakthroughs are available to those who can remove

one of the truth’s protective layers.”

-- ​Neil Armstrong​, ​astronaut, first human on the Moon

The discovery of microbial life on another celestial body, in contrast to that of intelligent life,
would have the double benefit of showing that science and space agencies can deliver, if only
partly, on what has long been expected by reasonable minds, while it would avoid ​far-reaching
repercussions​ on the governing institutions of this world and, not least, on religion’s founding
principle of the centrality of the human experience in the universe. We’re talking microbes after
all, which would be evidence of ​some life​ out there, but at the same time a reassuring sign for
those who still believe they are the only ones ​made in God’s image​.

With the attention of the media, of most scientists and of millions of neophytes fixated on
microbes on ​Titan​ or ​Europa​, spacefaring countries could concentrate on one central objective:
Keeping the larger truth’s “protective layers” firmly in place until it is deemed safe to ​gradually let
go​ (read: several decades). Unless, of course, the truth suddenly appears from ​somewhere
else​, but that’s another story for another time. For now, the extraordinary implications of what
has been found on Mars -- and how a few chosen elite circles are dealing with it -- must remain,
if not squarely under wraps, at least blurred by an imposing cloud of deniability.

Photo: Mars
Viking​ lander,





For many people, the existence of extraterrestrial intelligent life has always been a certainty (a
poll​ conducted in 2017 found that half the human population believe in the existence of alien
civilizations). And if most of these believers fully expected to witness a revelation during their
lifetime, they surely never imagined that their expectation would hit such a thick wall, erected
brick by brick through multiple denials from various authoritative voices, with the silence of
corporate media, among others, providing the mortar.

Nor has that expectation been particularly well served these last years by the activities of various
groups and individuals loosely associated with the “UFO community”. Don’t get me wrong, it is
thanks to the persistent work of leaders and public figures of that community that the subject of
UFOs was kept on the public radar, and from their ranks came out some worthy products
(James Fox’s film “​I Know What I Saw​” being one). More recently, though, they’ve appeared to
be stuck in a slow-moving vessel with no clear destination.

And so it is that, while a number of dedicated truthseekers were posting one finding after another
of stunning “anomalies” on Mars, and were dismissed or attacked at every turn for it, the UFO
community was still plowing ahead with the recycling of the same old stories of “sightings” and
“abductions” that reportedly happened decades ago. The public has been fed a series of
creative variations on the ​Roswell incident ​-- which took place a whopping 73 years ago -- but
barely a word was uttered about the astonishing nature of the visual evidence of Martian life that
has been piling up for the last 10 years.

Ironically enough, it’s as if Aliens on Mars were of little interest to a community that has given
itself the task of investigating possible visitations to Earth… by Aliens.

Believers also suffered the shoddy parade of pseudo-documentaries and cringy TV shows,
some starring “Alien hunters” walking around in the dark without ever finding anything besides
scripted moments of surprise, accompanied, as it must, by a drum roll and a close-up of their
faces. On social media, a few sincere efforts have been eclipsed by a continuous celebration of
tawdry jokes and made-up stories on Aliens and UFOs, sometimes supported by outlandish
videos, for example claiming to show a spaceship over a city when in fact that spaceship had
been screen-grabbed from a science-fiction movie.




This festival of bad taste has blurred the line between truth and falsehood and contributed in
leaps and bounds to the discrediting of the entire matter, with the unavoidable consequence that
many of the people who were inclined to look at it with an open mind have now turned their back
on a subject they associate with cheap spectacle and ridicule.

Needless to say, officials tasked with keeping the lid on things could not have hoped for a more
propitious environment to pursue a campaign of blanket denial and rejection of any claim about
alien life. The idea that “there is nothing on Mars” has been so well planted in the public mind
that space agencies and corporate media don’t even bother to take a look at the available
evidence (officially, that is), much less print it for the public to see (my own attempts at
communicating with the media have all been ignored, and in some cases blocked).

Theirs is a stance not dissimilar to that of an adversary who knows he’s got the better of you
already and doesn’t need to put much of an effort into the fight anymore. A perfect illustration of
this, as well as a dismaying indication of the general understanding out there, is the reply I got
from an otherwise educated and intelligent person:

“I’ll believe it when they [the State] tell us about it”.

There you go. Citizens get to enjoy the sweet life under the benevolent wing of ​Big Brother​,
provided they wait for the giant screen to tell them what to believe and when to believe it.
Anything coming from non-authorized, non-official channels must be rejected immediately, no
questions asked.​ ​What you get in the end is a relatively happy but oblivious flock that flatly
refuses to even consider the possibility that what is being put in front of their eyes could actually
be the real thing.

This is how polite society surrenders to deception and looks the other way while unwritten rules
of silence extend their tentacles everywhere, making anyone having to touch the subject of alien
life a bit concerned for their reputation or career, or maybe for the research funds they hope to
get. The only time that silence is broken is during the occasional ​oddball news​ segment of
television shows -- always delivered with that awkward laugh -- or when reporters in the written
press are given the green light to put to pieces the claims of those who dare not conform.

To put it succinctly, the expectation of a revelation has been smothered to death by the
confluence of various efforts and the complicit silence of a great many.



Photo taken by the Curiosity rover at the ​Vera Rubin Ridge ​(2017). On the image below,
that trailer-looking structure (at left) is actually part of a larger structure that was made to
appear as a rock formation when looked at from afar.




If you were to make a list of people with academic titles as long as an arm who have publicly
assured everyone that “no sign of extraterrestrial life has been found”, and another list of media
and science reporters who have been peddling this ​official truth​ without ever questioning it, you
would end up with a book in your hands as thick as a telephone directory. Here is a sample of
pronouncements made since 2010 about what members of the general public, including kids,
are encouraged to believe about extraterrestrial life in general and life on Mars in particular:

“There is no sign of any life -- plants or intelligent Martians -- on the

planet. We know now that Mars is a very cold, dry planet, where liquid
water cannot exist on the surface.”

--- ​ESA Space For Kids​, European Space Agency, 17 November, 2010

From NASA’s ​Multimedia - Raw Images​ website page.

(Note the dark collar and sleeves, as well as a circle on the chest.) 



“Earth is the only place that we know for certain supports life. Many
claims have been made by observers who thought they saw evidence
of life on Mars, but we now know they were tricked by the very
difficult measurements.”

--- ​Dr. Marc Rayman​, ​NASA Space Place​, cited from ​this text​ (undated)

I must have been tricked by some very difficult measurements.

Photo by the Curiosity rover at the ​Naukluft Plateau​, Sol 1278 (2016).



“If anyone with an active imagination and a blog is to be believed, Mars is a

wonderland of jelly doughnuts, human bones and alien-built monuments to
Elvis Presley. (...) Odd-looking things pop up in Mars images all the time,
but we can excuse them due to shadow, tricks of the light, strange angles
and our very human propensity for assigning familiar names to random
shapes, just like when we see dragons in fluffy clouds.”

--- ​Amanda Kooser​, ​C-NET​, 4 August, 2015

Fluffy enough?
Curiosity rover at the
Murray Buttes​ area
(Sol 1454).

Something tells me
this is not a jelly
Curiosity, Sol 1454.



“The Mars Curiosity rover has taken tens of thousands of photographs, and
in those photographs are millions of rocks. It’s inevitable that if you stare at
millions of rocks for long enough, then you’ll find a rock that resembles

--- ​Mick West​, ​​, 6 July, 2015

Spirit rover in
the area known as
Santa Anita​,
Sol 136-141 (2004).

Curiosity rover at
the ​Kimberley
Formation,​ Sol 551.



“The Five Most Insane Conspiracy Theories About Mars --- Yep. There are
people who believe that Mars was once inhabited by intelligent life and that
space researchers want to cover up this amazing fact. And scientists have
chosen to do this by focusing the world’s attention to the Red Planet itself.
We can’t even.”

--- ​Stephen Luntz​, ​IFL Science​, 2 October, 2015

Curiosity at ​Vera
Rubin Ridge

Curiosity at
Murray Buttes
(Sol 1454).


“No life on Mars after all as NASA says it’s too dry”

--- ​Jacqui Goddard​, ​The Sunday Times​, 22 November, 2017

Sol 2027-
2029 (2018).

The same
genetic pool
the universe.
Curiosity at
the ​Windjana
Drilling Site


“Scientists have not yet found any life form on the red planet, whether that’s
intelligent beings, animals or even bacteria.”

--- ​The Week​, 26 July, 2018

“Not even
From the

Curiosity at
the ​Twin
Cairns​ area,
Sol 343.


“Despite searching for decades, scientists still haven’t found definitive proof
of life on the Red Planet, either alive today or long dead.”

--- ​Belinda Smith​, ​ABC-Science​, 26 July, 2018

They didn’t
search very
at the
PIA 16453

Pipes and
pumps did
not get to
Mars by
Curiosity at
Ireson Hill,​
Sol 1598.


“The planet today has almost no atmosphere, no liquid water, and its surface
is bombarded by intense radiation. ‘We now think the likelihood of life
existing on its surface is slim to non-existent’, said Matthew Golombek of
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.”

--- ​Robin McKie​, ​The Guardian​, 27 October, 2018

Curiosity, Sol

object -
Curiosity rover
photo, Sol 2029.


“... NASA’s Curiosity rover found ancient traces of organic matter embedded
in Martian rocks and detected a ‘season variation’ in atmospheric methane
on the Red Planet -- an annual pulse of the gas, almost as if something out
there were breathing. (...) But they aren’t proof of life on Mars, or even
necessarily strong evidence that there’s anything living, or anything that
used to be alive, out there.”

--- ​Rafi Letzter​, ​Live Science​, 7 June, 2018

Proof of nothing?
Weak evidence?
If you say so.
Curiosity rover,
Sol 404.

Curiosity at ​Gale
Crater​, Sol 2027.


“According to Peter ​[Martian terrain expert and member of ExoMars 2022’s

team Peter Grindrod], Mars is one of the most likely places we will find
evidence of extraterrestrial life. The red planet’s similar history to that of
Earth, as well as its relatively pristine conditions, make it an ideal place to
start the search.” (...) ​Despite what the headlines might be claiming, there is
no proof yet of past or present life on Mars.”

--- ​Kerry Lotzof​, ​Natural History Museum​ (London), 27 July, 2018

A head and a...

tail? Note the
other statue
standing nearby
with a sun-like
carving on the
chest. Curiosity
rover, Sol 1278.

Sculptures. On
the right (and in
insert), a statue’s
head with clearly
defined features
(eyes, nose and
mouth). Curiosity
at ​Marias Pass​,
Sol 997.


These denials, sometimes sprinkled with a good dose of condescension, give you a pretty good
idea of how the fields have been sown and the minds softened up just enough to assimilate the

There is no life on Mars, only rocks and rock formations.​

Whatever you think you are seeing is just a trick of light, the
Sun’s reflection, a shadow, a weird angle, or maybe a dragon in
a fluffy cloud.​

Try after that, just try, telling them -- or the media, or the public -- that there is strong visual
evidence to the contrary, and your case will be dealt with swiftly. You become either a disturbing
conduit of idiotic “conspiracy theories” or a pitiful individual or group of individuals suffering the
furious effects of repeated hallucinations. The sentence is seldom delivered in so many words,
but it is always implied: ​You and your evidence are to be tossed to the margins of society, and
you should seek treatment.​

Curiosity at ​Mount Shields​ and ​Logan Pass​ (2015).


This 3D campaign -- Denial, Disinformation and Discredit -- is nothing new. It is not a strictly
modern response to a strictly modern set of questions, but a well-rounded effort mounted on the
back of lessons learned during decades of practice. Here’s what a Michigan man, who long ago
appeared on television to talk about a UFO he had witnessed, said later when he was asked by
a reporter if he regretted doing so:

“Yes, I am... I am sorry, because… not that it’s not the truth… I just…
it’s the reaction... I just… leave me alone… If the thing lands right
there near that pump, I won’t say a word.”

This exchange, seen in James Fox’s documentary film mentioned earlier, took place in 1966,
long before that man’s reputation could receive a trashing on social media by a mob of
insensible users or by an army of paid debunkers on 24-hour-cycle news websites. Yet he was
visibly shaken, quite ready to promise that from then on he would remain silent.

It must be saying something about the state of human civilization that, 54 years later, the belief
in flying angels, in bleeding statues and in the miraculous raising from their tombs of putrified
corpses is still considered ​virtuous​, whereas any claim -- even with evidence -- of the existence
not far from Earth of universal brothers and sisters is denounced as ​batshit crazy stuff​.

Any person seeing this anywhere on Earth would immediately conclude that it is
a collapsed “man-made” structure. Curiosity rover, Sol 1367 (2016).


And don’t think for a moment that you’ll get anywhere by appealing to the gods of ​common
sense​. This well known human attribute -- a “practical judgment independent of specialized
knowledge” -- won’t open any door for you in some elites’ ranks, although in all fairness they do
have a point about scientific theories offering more reliable measures of the unseen than any
human “intuition” or “hunch” based on practical experience.

Be that as it may, we have yet to find any sort of proof that Nature
intended for science reporters and assorted debunkers to be the
sole possessors of the capacity to ​observe,​ to ​reason​ and to

That some of them can associate our studying of Mars photos with a search for “jelly doughnuts
and alien-built monuments to Elvis Presley” is not just an attempt at being poetically cute, it is an
attack meant to discredit the message and the messengers, and a warning to anyone else who
might want to come forward with arguments that go against the ​official truth​ these reporters are
selling to their readers.

Curiosity rover at the ​Shaler Outcrop​ (Sol 120).


The arrogance of their interventions is so explicit that one could be forgiven to think that they
must have had the pleasure of long walks on Mars and been able to see with their own eyes that
it is populated only by rocks. I cannot claim such frolicking adventures for myself, but like others
I did spend countless hours during the last 10 years analyzing -- from corner to corner, from
foreground to background -- hundreds of official photos taken by the Mars rovers. So let me ask:
When was the last time, if ever, these reporters analyzed every inch of a Mars image, including
areas that were smudged, blurred or colour-brushed to hide the too-obvious?

The point here is not to play scientist or engage in a debate on the scientific validity of certain
reports about the Red Planet. The point is to denounce the rupture that exists between the
staggering visual evidence of life on Mars accumulated so far and the official public statements
made about ​Mars being hostile to life​ and about ​Mars offering nothing out of the ordinary​.

The point is this: The public is supposed to be able to take

scientists’ word on these questions. But, hey, Houston we have a
problem, for the evidence available is forcing us to seriously doubt
that word.

Just a rock? Maybe. But then again, maybe not. From the ​Viking Lander,​ 1976-1977.


How can they publicly affirm that chances of life on Mars “are slim to non-existent”, when we
have visual signs of industrial activity on the planet? How can they publicly affirm that “nothing
out of the ordinary has been found”, when any pair of trained eyes can see structures, pipelines,
statues and other objects? How can they stand at that microphone telling the public that claims
of life on Mars are just a fantasy constructed in the minds of a few people who supposedly had
not one, not two, but hundreds of similar hallucinations in the short span of several years?

The eyes are useless to a brain that does not want to see. The few pieces of visual evidence
offered here should not be simply shoved aside under the fallacious pretext that some images
are not as crispy clear as that photo of your grandma standing two metres away in your living
room. This is Mars, and we work with what we get from space agencies. The trick is to learn to
pierce through the fog (and the blur, and the smudge) and look attentively at ​what is​ on the
photo. The following image (of an area at the base of ​Mount Sharp​) is a perfect example.

I made this finding about 10 years ago. The area, located far in the background of the original
photo, had been blurred and colour-brushed. Now, you can either dismiss the entire photo solely
on the basis of its quality, or you can stop fixating on that and instead look at WHAT IS on the
image: An imposing system of pipelines and supporting structures.
The evidence of life on Mars is right there, staring at you!


More importantly, if only one -- ​only one​ -- of all the anomalies discovered is the actual thing
(and there can be no doubt about that), it automatically means that there is intelligent life on
Mars. To be clear: If you were to dismiss all the images shown here except for just one, which
you’d consider to be clear and indisputable, there still would be no running away from the fact
that this single structure, this single statue or this single “man-made” object is all that is needed
to confirm that humans are not alone... and have never been alone.

It would also mean that what Earthlings have been told during the last 40 years about the
absence of life on Mars -- or in the universe for that matter -- was, and is, a scandalous lie
constructed on a heap of malodorous muck. Maybe, then, that good old ​common sense​ will kick
in and more people will arrive at one inescapable conclusion:

Either scientists, reporters and debunkers claiming to know for sure that there’s no life on Mars
are blissfully unaware of the existence of modern image-enhancing tools, and they never
bothered to take a serious look at the images from the Red Planet -- or they have indeed seen
what’s there but for some reason decided to remain silent or, worse, to engage in acts of public

Whatever the case may be, these debunkers need some debunking of their own.

While on the subject of blurred images, here’s another finding I made several years ago
(and along the way lost the info about its exact location on Mars). I am showing it anyway, in good
faith. Look carefully. How confident are you that this is “just a rock”?


“But who shall dwell in these worlds if they be inhabited?

Are we or they Lords of the world?”

-- ​Johannes Kepler​ (1571-1630)

From the
rover at


Close-ups of walls, pipes and supporting structures at the base of ​Mount Sharp,​ PIA 19839.



Naturally, the available evidence gives rise to a lot of questions: Are collapsed structures and
visible destruction on the Red Planet the result of a natural catastrophe? Of an ​outside
intervention?​ Of both? Was ​Percival Lowell​ right when he said that an advanced civilization on
Mars was trying to counter the obliterating effects of climate change? Was physicist John
Brandenburg on to something when he claimed to have found ​evidence​ of “large, anomalous
nuclear explosions” on Mars? Have survivors gone underground? Has contact been made?

What discovery, or discoveries, prompted governments and their space agencies to conclude
that it was necessary to lie, and keep lying, to the whole world?

Curiosity rover in the ​Lower Parts of Mount Sharp,​ Sol 1516, PIA 21256​.


Any confirmation of what’s implied in these questions would undoubtedly create a shockwave on
Earth, a planet, it should be pointed out, still characterized in the XXIst century by periodical
outbursts of violence associated with fear, intolerance and hate for anything or anyone ​different
-- a culture, a religious belief, a nationality, a political view or even a skin colour. Not surprisingly,
fanatics are presently hard at work spreading the message that Aliens are “fallen angels” and
“envoys of Satan”, which is as close as one can get to calling for the swift execution of even the
most peaceful of Aliens, whether they be visiting Earth or mining Mars.

This sordid feature of humanity cannot justify the outrageous betrayal of people’s right to be
informed. So there has to be another reason. But it has become disappointedly obvious that the
truth will not be found in the impenetrable protective layers put in place by certain authorities,
much less in the jolly prose of reporters too busy covering ​what’s fun to print​ (the ​Flat Earth
movement has received more press coverage in a few months than all the visual evidence of life
on Mars has in years).

Photo by the Curiosity rover in the ​Twin Cairns​ area, Sol 343.

Still, there is a way for thinking people to tackle these and other questions, and maybe,
hopefully, force a reckoning. They could engage in a series of well organized public discussions,
supported by a large circulation of the evidence, intended to explore plausible answers to
questions raised by the numerous visual indications of life on Mars. Given the colossal network
of pipelines and assorted structures found in multiple areas -- some half buried in sand, others
looking like they were constructed only recently --, a good starting point would be the
rehabilitation of Percival Lowell’s theories, which have been repeatedly put down ever since they
saw the light of day.

This is meant as a step in that direction. Without much illusion, though, as it is a sure thing that
many will prefer denial over whatever evidence. It’s more convenient that way. They will once
again respond that this is just “another conspiracy theory”, but I submit that the conspiracy of
silence visited here has reached past the point of mere theory. For that silence can be observed,
verified and confirmed, and it is screaming loud enough to be heard by anyone paying a
minimum of attention.

“It’s inevitable that if you stare at millions of rocks for long enough,
then you’ll find a rock that resembles something.” ​--- ​Mick West​,​.

This image is a gift to Mr. West. For it is not unreasonable to think that once in a while we may
see weird things in the Martian rocks. Just not all of the time.

at the
PIA 16453

JUST TWO MORE … to exercise the eyes

Close-up of a section of a photo taken by the Curiosity rover at the ​Rocknest

Formation​, PIA 16453 (2012)

at ​Ireson
Sol 1598.


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