NASA’s Racist Pioneer 10 Probe (1972)


As the Soviet Union was leading the Space Race, the US had been ideologically forced to begrudgingly spend millions of dollars (for no discernible return of financial profit), in attempting to prove that ‘capitalism’ was better than ‘Communism’. This type of particular US childishness was defeated at every single-step by Soviet science – and when the US landed men on the Moon – the Soviets immediately switched their resources into building a permanent space station in earth’s orbit, a technological advance they eventually achieved in 1972. (The Soviets had developed a sophisticated Moon Landing programme, but were too concerned about the safety of the Cosmonauts involved, to rush the mission). So worried were the US that the Soviets might send a probe into deep space carrying a hammer and sickle emblem explaining that ‘Communism’ was the most advanced ideology upon planet earth, that they immediately co-opted the bourgeois (capitalist supporting) scientific community in the West, to assist in the design and development of what became known as the ‘Pioneer 10’ deep-space probe, and which was launched on March 2nd, 1972. Its mission was to be the first spacecraft to pass through the asteroid-belt between Mars and Jupiter, and the first to pass close to Jupiter. It would also become the first humanity-derived technology to leave the solar system and travel into deep space. This being the case, Carl Sagan (and others) designed a 6 inch by 9 inch gold-anodised (aluminium) plaque bearing the sun and planets of earth’s solar system, together with pulsar and hydrogen information presented in such a manner so as to assist an alien species (possibly millions of years in the future), to understand the time of launch of the probe, and where it was launched from.


Sagan also included two (naked) human figures both of ‘White’ European (i.e. ‘Caucasian’) physiognomy. NASA’s unbelievable explanation of this depiction was that it ‘represents’ the type of person that developed the technology that made Pioneer 10 possible. In reality, what NASA, Carl Sagan, his wife Linda, (and astrophysicist Frank Drake) had sent into deep space, was proof of the US ‘White’ racism that was dominant during the 20th century. Can it seriously be true that there was no Black, Chinese or Asian input into this project at any level of its development? Even so, why should a multicultural society – such as the USA – portray itself as ‘White’ when this is blatantly untrue? Moreover, there are many different ethnic groups on the planet that are not represented by two obviously ‘White’ Americans. Finally, the USSR was not interested in this type of venture, as it was viewed as being a product of a religiously motivated and ‘inverted’ mind-set always seeking the ‘mysterious’ (god-like) other. Such an endeavour was useless for the progression of proletariat science and the collective uplifting of society as a whole. In short, the Soviets viewed Pioneer 10 as a bourgeois fetish.

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