The moon of Phobos has long been considered a center of apprehension and speculation, perhaps making it one of the most aptly named planets ever to enter into the astronomical lexicon. Phobos was named after the god of fear, and is still the center of one of the greatest mysteries of any space program worldwide. Many have even gone so far as to suggest the Phobos incident was the first hostile act by aliens on a human space probe. But does the evidence suggest this was just a taste of things to come?
It all started on July 12, 1988. The world was a very different place. The Soviet Union was in the process of economic restructuring, the US had just recovered from a miniature stock market crash earlier that year, and in a sign of increasing amiability between the US and the Soviet Union, president Reagan had addressed some 600 graduates during a visit to Moscow. And just one year had passed since Reagan had uttered the words before the United Nations, “Is not an Alien threat already among us?”
When Phobos I and II first launched, they were supposed to be the first unmanned probes to reach the Martian surface. But en route, the Phobos I suddenly lost contact with Earth. Later it was determined the failure most likely happened due to a malfunction when one of the operators sent a command to shut it off. Not suspecting anything untoward, the public accepted this explanation and the mission continued. At least it did until January of 1989 when the probe started orbiting Mars.
The execution had been flawless. There would be some difficulty when actually landing on the moon itself, but the probe didn’t suspect it was in any danger until then. But then Russian scientists received a transmission from the probe. It would prove to be the last. As they watched the screen unfolding images before them we don’t know quite how they reacted, but they could clearly see something that would shock then nation when it went public.
For years images of unidentified flying saucers had been appearing in tabloid newspapers and even mainstream news outlets for decades. The subject was a matter of controversy, and books on the subject were already making places like Area 51 once again famous. But when an image of what appeared to be a flying saucer approaching the space probe was sent back to Earth, the Soviets weren’t sure how to react. And when their probe suddenly and unexpectedly disappeared, thought to have been destroyed very suddenly by unknown means, they were hesitant to make any public conclusions.
And if the flying saucers viewed just before the disappearance were not incredible enough, later they would release the presence of a strange heat signature on the planet’s surface in the most unnatural geometric formation ever seen on another planet or moon. The shape was an unmistakable grid visible only to the infrared spectrum.
When it comes to events from history that simply cannot be explained, it seldom gets more intense than a massive grid-like structure invisibly projecting heat in massive quantities on the surface of a planet mere seconds before the space probe photographing it is destroyed by an unknown force with what appears to be a flying saucer heading toward it. Strangely the mystery was not followed up on and the Soviet Union’s space mystery remains unsolved to this day.