Today we are going to look at the Summary of Conclusions about Fireballs and Meteorites that Victor Clube attached to his cover letter to the Chief, Physics and BMD Coordinator of the European Office of Aerospace Research and Development back in 1996, 5 years before September 11, 2001; that, and a few other things.
I often get accused of "fear mongering" because I keep bringing this subject up again and again. I even think that it is fascinating that the big breakthrough in my experiment in Superluminal Communication came on the day that the fragments of Comet Shoemaker-Levy began striking Jupiter - even at the very moment of the first impact - and that this communication with "myself in the future" has focused so much attention on the subject of swarms of comets and comet fragments that repeatedly barrel through the solar system, wreaking havoc and bringing death and destruction to earth. As a result of the research prompted by this communication, I wrote an entire 800 page book that is woven around the issue of cometary explosion type catastrophes that obviously have occurred repeatedly throughout history: The Secret History of The World.
In the early days of publishing the results of this experiment, I was nonplussed by the many attacks I came under from all quarters. I was accused of "channeling aliens" (not true); of wanting to "start a cult" (what is cultic about doing research into scientific subjects and exposing religion for the fraud it is?) and so on. That sort of thing really hurt and puzzled me at first, but I have now seen it for the blessing it was: it has helped me to learn about the kinds of people who are in charge of our world, the kind of people who want to keep secrets so that they can hang onto power: the kind of people who create such things as "The War on Terror" to conceal from the masses of humanity the future that may very well bring our civilization to an end; the kind of people who know that survival of cometary bombardment is possible and who want to be the only ones who do survive, and to hell with everyone else.
Mike Baillie, in his book about the Black Death, writes:
It is increasingly evident that intellectually the world is divided into two. There are those who study the past, in the fields of history and archaeology, and see no evidence for any human populations ever having been affected by impacts from space. In diametric opposition to this stance there are those who study the objects that come close to, and sometimes collide with, this planet. Some serious members of this latter group have no doubt whatsoever that there must have been numerous devastating impacts in the last five millennia; the period of human civilization. In a paper published in 2005, David Asher and colleagues have looked at the objects that are known to have come close to the earth in recent times. They conclude, based on various strands of evidence (for example, the number of meteorites discovered on earth that originated on the moon) that the average time between impacts on earth is no more than 300 years, probably less. [Earth in the Cosmic Shooting Gallery]Checking the authors Baillie is referring to, we find Bill Napier listed. Napier is a colleague of Victor Clube. This brings us to another division. There is a debate going on about this issue as was mentioned by Clube in the first parts of the letter in question that I quoted yesterday. He wrote:
It is emphasised here that the present report expresses a viewpoint which is contrary to the mainstream scientific theme currently reinforced through various US agencies in the wake of recent major findings under US leadership (eg those of Luis Alvarez, Eugene Shoemaker, David Morrison etc. Despite the importance of this mainstream theme, it is recognized here that the cometary signatures in the terrestrial record are generally stronger than the asteroidal signatures in the case of both long term and short term effects ie those affecting biological and geological evolution on the one hand and mankind and civilization on the other. The raison d'etre behind this situation is a cometary input dominated in the long term by objects > 100 kilometres in size which substantially break up in the short term into objects < 1 kilometre in size, the "window" of significance so far as the average interval between random impacts by comets and asteroids in the intervening size range are concerned being approximately 1- 10 million years. To concentrate, for planetary defence purposes, on catastrophes which occur only within this particularly narrow range of frequencies is patently absurd.Clube's reference to the "mainstream scientific" ideas about comets and asteroids and so on is only the tip of the iceberg in reference to this debate.
The debate is about asteroids vs. comets. Asteroids are solid bodies of rock and there are about 1000 of them with diameters of 1 km or more that cross the orbit of the earth. They are called "Apollo" or "earth crossing" asteroids. The "American School" of astronomers believe that these objects are the main threat to earth and humanity and they are concerned with finding them, tracking them, and working out their orbits. This school believes that if all these asteroids can be mapped, and any "bad ones" dealt with, Earth will be safe for the foreseeable future. Their estimates are that we only get hit with one of these babies about every 100,000 years or so.
At this point in time, the American school of astronomers has already found and tracked about 700 of the estimated 1000 such asteroids and, so far, none of them are likely to hit the earth anytime soon. By the end of 2008, they expect to have located 90% of these potential threats.
Of course, they aren't talking about objects smaller than 1 km because they are believed to pose much less risk even if they do smack into the earth.
So it is that the "American School" believes that they can, over time and with superior American technology, survey everything around us and keep our space in space "under control."
What they are saying, as Baillie astutely points out is this: There are objects that cross the path of the earth but they hardly ever hit us (only about every 100,000 years), but they are going to make us safe by finding any and all of them and devising methods to take out the ones that MIGHT pose a threat at any point in the future. They assume, of course, that if they figure out that any of them might be a threat by mapping their orbits, they will have time to do this.
In "Asteroid Astronomer World" there have not been any serious impacts in the last few thousand years, for sure, and they are going to see to it that it stays that way!
How typically American! Don't you worry, little Lady, John Wayne and his gang will circle the wagons and shoot up those redskins/outlaws!
It's obvious that Victor Clube is not a member of the American School.
The "Comet Hazard" school is British based and they think very differently from the American "mainstream" asteroid school.
Comets are said to be different from asteroids because they are made up of water ice, frozen gas, organic materials, and odd bits of rock and metal. The standard theory (which may need revision according to those who advocate the electric universe theory) says that comets are heated as they pass through the solar system and this causes outgassing. It is then that we see them as bright objects with long tails.
After a few circuits through the solar system, some comets "outgas" completely and all that is left is a "very black lump" of any size, typically at least a few kilometers in diameter. The reason a worn out comet is so black is possibly due to the poly-aromatic-hydrocarbons that are concentrated onto the comet's surface like a coating of tar. Such objects, unlike asteroids, are very difficult to spot because they do not reflect light.
Comets also leave trails of dust and debris in the inner solar system and the Earth passes through such periodically. When this happens, there are generally meteor showers which are really particles of comets burning up in the atmosphere.
Comets can also break up in to smaller - but still sizable - chunks.
Now, imagine that in a trail of comet dust, there are also some fairly large chunks of black, un-seeable, comet fragments. If you can't see them, you can't do anything about them. And when they do "hit," they tend to burn up and/or explode violently in the atmosphere (eg Tunguska event), so they don't leave long-lasting traces such as craters for archaeologists to find and say "Yes, the fall of this civilization was due to an assault from outer space." No, there is only fire, death and destruction; sometimes total.
What all this means is that the comet problem does not submit itself to an efficient solution.
The Comet Hazard school scientists propose that the Tunguska event was due to a fragment of Comet Encke. These scientists also now have the FACT of the fragments of Comet Shoemaker-Levy hitting Jupiter in July of 1994 to illustrate the problem we face. The Comet Hazard scientists also think, as mentioned above, that impacts are a lot more frequent than many people suppose.
So, to sum it up: there are two very different schools that study hazards from space. The Asteroid school says that there have been very few impacts and the problem is solvable, and the Comet school says there is evidence that there have been numerous impacts by comet debris that have had profound effects on human civilizations, and will again, probably very soon.
Okay, now let's take a look at Victor Clube's summary of the problem. He writes:
Asteroid strikes, though important, are not the most serious short-term risk to mankind or civilizationSo, the question is: if there is even a 10 % chance that we are facing a Shoemaker-Levy type event, why isn't anybody doing anything about it?
Every 5-10 generations or so, for about a generation, mankind is subject to an increased risk of global insult through another kind of cosmic agency.
This cosmic agency is a "Shoemaker-Levy type" train of cometary debris resulting in sequences of terrestrial encounters with sub-km meteoroids.
While the resulting risk is ~ 10%, the global insults take the form of (a) multiple multi-megaton bombardment, (b) climatic deterioration through stratospheric dust-loading, not excluding ice-age, and (c) consequent uncontrolled disease/plague.
The sequence of events affecting involved generations is potentially debilitating because, whether or not the risk is realised, civilization commonly undergoes violent transitions eg revolution, migration and collapse.
Subsequently perceived as pointless, such transitions are commonly an embarrassment to national elites even to the extent that historical and astronomical evidence of the risk are abominated and suppressed.
Upon revival of the risk, however, such "enlightenment" becomes an inducement to violent transition since historical and astronomical evidence are then in demand.
Such change and change about in addition to the insult is evidently self-defeating and calls for a procedure to eliminate the risk.
Our technological ability to counter (a) multiple multi-megaton bombardment and (b) stratospheric dust-loading should therefore be explored.
The very short lead-time commonly associated with the detection of sum-km meteoroids approaching the Earth implies countering procedures which differ from those associated with catalogued km-plus asteroids and comets.
Well... maybe they are. Maybe all this War on Terror business and getting control of resources is, at its root, the psychopath's way of handling a threat to their survival. Maybe it isn't the "Twilight of the Psychopaths" as Kevin Barrett might like to think... but the Twilight of Humanity; if we don't wake up.