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Graphic by Hannah Kamman
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Murray State chapter.

Welcome to the Conspiracy Series.

This week we will dive into the conspiracy that the moon landing was staged and not real.

The first moon landing, Apollo 11, occurred in 1969. It is estimated that over 530 million people watched this event take place from their televisions. This moon landing occurred after years of the space race. The space race occurred after World War II between the United States and the Soviet Union. During the Cold War, the race to conquer space began starting with Russia’s Sputnik. Sputnik was only the beginning of the race as the United States soon followed with their own missile. Eventually, the United States came away with the win as we conquered the moon.

Behind the Conspiracy

After Apollo 11 aired on television, many people started arguing that the landing was fake. These people provided many reasons behind their theory that we are going to talk about today. The first being that the American flag appears to be flapping in the wind. Obviously this was odd because there isn’t any wind in space. The next few reasons are all based around something missing from the video of Apollo 11. People noticed that there were no stars in the video recording and that you could not see the camera in Armstrong’s helmet visor in a picture. It is also noticeable that the shadows don’t seem to line up with their objects. 


Although this conspiracy has many reasons to believe it, it also has many facts to prove it wrong. 

While the flag may look like it is flapping in the wind, it is actually just built differently than an ordinary flag. A hard to see rod is attached at the top of the flag to the pole to keep the flag upright and visible. If this rod was not there the flag would just hang limp like normal flags on Earth do when there is no wind. Apparently the astronauts had difficulties extending the rod all the way causing a ripple effect, which is why it appears to be moving around. 

There are no stars in the video because stars do not show up on low-quality video and pictures. If you have ever tried to take a picture of the stars with your phone, you know that it never comes out looking like you want. 

The answer to not being able to see the camera in Armstrong’s reflection is simple. The image I am referring to is an image of Buzz Aldrin that was taken by Neil Armstrong. The camera used was mounted onto Armstrong’s suit, so that’s why we are able to see his hands in the image. Because they needed their hands, NASA attached the cameras to their suits. 

The last theory is a little more difficult for me to explain because I don’t quite understand it. But I will do my best. People argued that certain things could be seen that shouldn’t have been able to be seen because they were in a shadow, and the sun is the only source of light. Science says that the sun wasn’t the only source of illumination and that the lunar ground is actually what caused these objects to be seen. Still doesn’t make that much sense to me but I am also not a science person. 

What I Think

While observing the “facts” behind the theory it could seem like the moon landing was staged, contrary to what we all learned in elementary school. When I first heard about a couple of these conspiracies I will admit my interest peaked. The reasoning that you can’t see the camera in Armstrong’s visor was the theory that made me think the most. For me, this is another theory that I think is a little silly. I understand the reasoning that we were in the space race and on a drastic mission to be the first man on the moon, but I don’t think that NASA or the government would resort to staging it in a studio. While it is creative I don’t think it’s too realistic. It makes sense that the United States was frantic to win the space race, but I don’t think they were desperate enough to fake it. 

Overall, I give this conspiracy a 3 out of 5 stars. On the surface, it can be believable. But once you dig past the surface all you see are the facts that prove this conspiracy is just a theory.

Come back next week to find out if “The King” is still alive and thriving.

Hannah Kamman

Murray State '22

Hannah Kamman is an elementary education major at Murray State University. In her spare time, she enjoys watching movies, spending time outside and cuddling with her cat. She is a dance teacher and a tree hugger.