by Luca Scantamburlo
August 22, 2007
INTRODUCTION TO THE
CONTROVERSIAL APOLLO 20 CASE
Beginning in May 2007, I had many private contacts with a presumed
William Rutledge (YouTube username, "retiredafb") who claims to have
been a volunteer for MOL-Gemini project (he was not chosen,
according to what he wrote me) and a former civilian test pilot on
various aircrafts. Up to now my last contact with him, having always
taken place by the YouTube General/Messages, was on July 20, 2007,
at 01:39 pm: a message of just three lines.
Is he honest? Is he an agent of discredit? Is he a debunker? Who is
behind him? Was he really a former test pilot who now is telling us
the truth? Or just kernels of truth?
Rutledge could have been a former civilian test pilot on various
aircrafts, born in Belgium in 1930 and employed in the last century
with Avro, Chance Vought and USAF. According to his testimony
granted to me in an interview, his last job before retiring was
working on the KH-11 project.
Since April 2007 W. Rutledge posted on YouTube several video
footages and images which could have come from the documentation
material of a classified mission that took place in August 1976:
Apollo 20. He added 13 different videos; later he removed 4 of them.
The main point of his presumed testimony was the probable space
investigation of a mysterious cigar-shaped object, visible on
official NASA photos taken by Apollo 15 and Apollo 17. The presence
of the huge and mysterious object is a reality, based on fact,
pointed out by Rutledge himself.
Under Natural Law and Natural Reason, mankind had the duty, as a
categorical imperative, to go there and investigate the mysterious
object. You can be sure that it did happen. If it was not Apollo 20,
it was some other secret space mission.
And if somebody is skeptical
about it, I invite him/her to read the Brookings' report, prepared
in November 1960 by the Brookings Institution Washington, D.C.:
Proposed Studies on the Implications of Peaceful Activities for
The report, prepared for NASA, was introduced to
the Committee on Science and Astronautics by the House of
Representatives of U.S.A. In the documents we can read:
[…] Historical and empirical studies
of the behavior of peoples and their leaders when confronted
with dramatic and unfamiliar events or social pressures. Such
studies might help to provide programs for meeting and adjusting
to the implications of such a discovery. Questions one might
wish to answer by such studies would include: How might such
information, under what circumstances, be presented or withheld
from the public for what ends? What might be the role of the
discovering scientists and other decision makers regarding
release of the fact of discovery?
from pag. 216, ibidem
So it is likely that in the past
somebody recommended and encouraged the adoption of several policies
and procedures to follow should the discovery of extraterrestrial
artifacts in our Solar System become a reality; chief among them:
withholding or delaying disclosure of the discovery of such
extraterrestrial "artifacts" from the public.
DID SOMEONE FABRICATE THEM ON PURPOSE TO GIVE US
On July 01, 2007, at 01:33 PM, my YouTube account received a message
from Rutledge. In his message the presumed William Rutledge answered
my previous request for clarification. I was very upset because as
time passed, many controversial aspects were coming out. I have
already discussed them. Most of them are audio contaminations with
radio dialogues from former Apollo missions (Apollo 11 and Apollo
Finally somebody (a very clever YouTube
user), discovered that the video of the presumed "City" (named
"Station 1" in the interview) is a fake: if you examine images
AS17-134-20437 and AS17-145-22163, found in the Apollo Image Atlas
located at the Lunar and Planetary Institute website, you can see
for yourself that the matrix of the lunar landscape (visible in the
lower part of the screen) is a composition of images taken during
the Apollo 17 mission.
Even if the lunar features visible in those images could be signs of
artificial structures, they do not refer to the Izsak's
neighborhood. They are images taken by the Apollo 17 crew, who
landed on December 11, 1972, on Taurus-Littrow region (coordinates:
20°9'55" N and 30°45'57" E).
But there is the slight possibility that the fake was fabricated on
purpose to provide us with a clue in investigating a lunar anomaly:
is it possible that the main "rocks" in the image (i.e., rocks
having 90-degree angles) are remains of some artifacts? Could the
lunar hills in the background be pyramid-like structures, with steps
going up the side, like in Mexico City, but partially obfuscated by
a thick layer of dust?
The site is obviously very old.
However I am aware that now the contradictions of the Apollo 20 case
are too many to be simple mistakes made by inexperienced helpers who
would live in Rwanda (the country that Rutledge has been claiming as
his place of residence).
ARE YOU AN IMPOSTOR?
HERE IS HIS ANSWER
In my quest for answers, I had previously posed the above question
mentioned in the title of the paragraph even before to know the
truth about the "City" footage spread by "retiredafb" (I received
the initial signaling in August, through a gentleman in Portugal).
In my question I used the nasty word
"impostor", as a possibility for explaining this controversial case,
which however gave us the opportunity to discuss the presence of an
unknown object on the far side of the Moon. I had asked him to
provide me more technical and heretofore unknown historical details
that could prove his identity of being a former test pilot and
Apollo pilot above all to face the suspicion which was growing in my
mind: the idea that maybe he were an impostor.
In his answer "retiredafb" mentioned two NASA employees who,
according to him, replied to an e-mail sent them. In this article I
am not going to name them. But they are NASA employees indeed. I
have checked their names; nevertheless, I decided to omit them (see
the dots in brackets) due to the contradictory aspects of the case
and the fact that I have not received enough evidence of the alleged
e-mail exchange yet, and not to mention respect for the privacy
rights of persons in question here.
Moreover, the presumed William Rutledge
has never used his e-mail address with me. He contacted me only
through my YouTube Account /General Messages.
So that you might
thoroughly examine the issue and draw your own conclusions, I am
incorporating the following excerpt from the original message
(without any kind of correction of possible mistakes) "retiredafb"
sent to my YouTube account:
<< Only [...] and [...] wrote me.
About details confirming the story, i could give you some things
unknown on internet or in books, details that NASA could
confirm, if they still have some people active and with a good
knowledge of Apollo program.
- The American flag used during Apollo 17, was the backup flag
of the Apollo 11 crew. Aldrin and Amstrong used it on the
ground, in the KSC building during EVA training. This same flag
is now on the ground of the moon, stucked near the steno crater.
This old Apollo 11 flag is in Taurus Littrow site, Gene Cernan
or Harrisson Schmitt can confirm that, or NASA maybe, but it is
a detail omitted in space history.
-During Apollo 20, during the REFSMMAT procedure, we used stars
for aligning the LM. Three of them were named REGOR NAVI and
DNOCES. These names are not recognizable on any sky chart, they
were the nicknames of the three astronauts dead during Apollo 1,
but spelled backwards.
REGOR was ROGER, "roger
NAVI was IGOR "Virgil IVAN
DNOCES means SECOND for
Edward Higgins White the second
I don't remember what was the number
corresponding during REFSMMAT. >>
from the retiredafb's
message to Luca Scantamburlo, July 01, 2007, at 01:33 PM -
Scantamburlo's account /General Messages, YouTube
PROCEDURE AND THE APOLLO 1 CREW
I did not know what the REFSMMAT acronym meant. So I checked on some
encyclopaedias and I have found they are initials indicating the
procedure used by guidance, navigation, and control system flight
controllers during the Apollo program. The term stands for:
"Reference to Stable Member Matrix".
More information is available
on a NASA website:
<<[...] a reference orientation
which can be well defined and used by the crew in their platform
On the link you find the "Star Reference
List Number" and the Star name which Rutledge is referring to in his
message. Rutledge does not remember the numbers (of course if he is
honest at least on this issue); they are the following: 03 for "Navi",
17 for "Regor" and 20 for "Dnoces".
The point is: again we have some very interesting technical details
(not well-known among the general public) provided by William
Rutledge, and again we have a statement by Rutledge which is not
without contradictions: his historical recollection is true, but is
reported by some websites; for example in the following:
On another one we can read:
[...] the first Apollo crew used
their own names spelled backwards Navi = Ivan Grissom, Dnoces =
Edward White II, and Regor = Roger Chaffee. When they died in
the fire, their unofficial names became used in many different
ways. The October 1994 Sky and Telescope magazine apparently has
an article on this subject.
source: Are there stars
called Novi, Regor and Dnoces?:
The Apollo 1 crew died in a tragic
accident on January 27, 1967, during a launch pad test of the
Apollo/Saturn spacecraft being prepared for the first piloted
flight: the AS-204 mission.
Subsequently the AS-204 mission was redesignated Apollo 1 to remember the lost space crew.
The three crew members were:
Lt. Col. Edward Higgins White II
Lt. Col. Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom (1926-1967)
Lieutenant Commander Roger
About the American flag used during Apollo 17, I could not find
anything to corroborate or to controvert the information given me by
"retiredafb" (William Rutledge). So I think it is necessary to
investigate the presumed historical details provided by William
Rutledge. This is the main goal of
One of its team members found out an
interesting public document.
THE SATURN V
LISTED BY USAF IN THE ENERGY SPACE ASSETS
The document mentioned above is a *.ppt presentation prepared by Dr.
Ron Sega, Under Secretary of the U.S. Air Force. The date of the
document is April 19, 2006, and the title is: <<Air Force Energy
Strategy>>. On Page 16 you have the Energy and Space Assets
prospect: the Saturn V rocket is mentioned, and there is also the
comparison with dates: the year 1970 and the year 2006. The fact
that the Apollo 20 would have been launched from Vandenberg AFB,
according to Rutledge's testimony, is now supported by strong
Moreover, there are official documents (from the '60 years) which
prove that the USAF officials discussed and boosted the use of the
Saturn V rocket. There is a specific point where the subject is:
<<Saturn V/Apollo Spacecraft
Guidance Computer Developments Programs>>.
It is obvious that the USAF needed the
Saturn V capability in case USSR began to set up bases on the Moon.
This was probably the main motivation for going to the Moon, and to
counter Soviet threat of going there and exploiting it militarily.
WILLIAM RUTLEDGE'S IDENTITY - THE "STRATEGY OF CONFUSION"?
Is it possible that behind the William Rutledge's identity there is
an agent of some Secret service of an European country who is trying
to push (or to drive), the US Government to reveal what it knows
about the possible extraterrestrial presence in the Solar System? Or
is he a person in control of some shadow Government scheme to
subject the public to a psychological and sociological test in the
context of the unofficial and rumored "Public acclimation program"?
So, if Apollo 19 and Apollo 20 missions really took place and one of
the crews members is now collaborating to spread the truth, it is
obvious that spreading classified material on YouTube would be a
military and diplomatic problem. So the better thing to do could be,
in that case, spreading true information about the secret space
missions but mingled with fakes and contaminations (always using
official space documentation).
In my opinion, in spite of the contaminations and contradictions of
the case, there are some important questions without a conclusive
How did "retiredafb" know about
the huge cigar-shaped object resting on the far side of the
Moon, visible on official NASA pictures (taken on Apollo 15
and Apollo 17)?
How did he get secret video
footage? Some of them are in the public domain and therefore
are not secret (they are from former Apollo missions); but
some of them, up to now, look like genuine footages never
revealed to the public. I am talking about the APOLLO 20
TEST Snyder Ingress (added and later removed by "retiredafb")
and the first part of the presumed LM-15 flyover (
SPACESHIP ON THE MOON flyover bef. landing APOLLO 20). Of
course in the future new elements could come out and change
How did he know about "Section
508", an official NASA section in charge of providing
information <<accessible to people with disabilities [...]
including employees and members of the public >>?
How could a simple joker know so
many technical aspects of space history and space flight? I
believe that in such a case it would be necessary to have a
strong support from someone.
So the presumed Apollo 20 disclosure
could very well be only a step of the so-called "strategy of
confusion": a strategy which could avoid panic and uncomfortable
questions for the Authorities.
In my opinion with this sort of Trojan
horse (the Apollo 20 case), it would be possible to diffuse a secret
truth crucial to the future existence of the mankind while, at the
same time, satisfying public curiosity in the far side of the Moon
and its mysteries without concern or worry about the eruption of
diplomatic intrigue should the real truth be disclosed.
The Eagle (LM-5) Lunar Module on the Moon (Apollo 11, 1969). Here is
the link with the list of all Lunar Modules produced:
You will find that the LM-15, the Phoenix spacecraft according to
William Rutledge, has never flown and was scrapped. W. Rutledge
knows this detail of official space history, and has pointed it out
in the interview (see answer nr.13).
- Courtesy NASA -
AS17-145-22163 image taken with a 70mm Hasselblad;
Mission Activity: EVA 2
Lens Focal Length: 60 mm
AS17-134-20437 image taken with a 70mm Hasselblad;
Mission Activity: EVA 1
Lens Focal Length: 60 mm
Frames from the footage entitled <<APOLLO 20 legacy part 1 The
CITY>>, added on YouTube by "retiredafb" on April 1, 2007: it is a
shot of a composition of images taken by Apollo 17 crew.
The Apollo 1 crew; from the left,
Edward Higgins White II
Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom (1926-1967)
Roger Chaffee (1935-1967)
- Courtesy NASA -
Frame from the footage <<APOLLO 20
Legacy liftoff of Apollo 20 saturne 5>>, added on YouTube by "retiredafb"
on April 9, 2007. Was it launched from Vandenberg AFB, on August 16,
Detail of the AS15-M-1579 High
Resolution Image, taken on Apollo 15;
- Courtesy NASA/LPI -
Detail of the AS15-M-1333, rotated to the left - The crater visible
in the picture is almost for sure "Izsak D", which is close to the
larger Izsak crater (not visible here)
- Courtesy NASA/LPI -
Frames from the <<APOLLO 20 TEST Snyder Ingress>>
Video added by "retiredafb" (William Rutledge) on YouTube on June
18, 2007; you can see the North American Rockwell Corp. logo on the
technicians' overalls; the video was removed by "retiredafb" himself