Transcript of Interview on the 3/21/96 Art Bell Program of

Richard Hoagland and Ken Johnston

Part 1 of 4 (First Half-Hour)

The following is a transcript of the radio interview that was aired late Thursday night - March 21, 1996 - into early Friday morning - March 22, 1996 - on the weeknight program, "Coast to Coast AM with Art Bell". The interview was conducted by Art Bell. The participants were Richard Hoagland and Ken Johnston.

Art Bell was attempting to get the scoop on what really took place at the historic press briefing at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. earlier in the day - where Richard Hoagland and a team of scientists and engineers presented their remarkable Moon findings.

This press briefing centered around information kept from the American public by NASA - concerning possible artificial structures - or ruins of an ancient "alien" civilization - discovered on the Moon, during the Apollo missions.

After a few words about "hard water", Art got to the "hard facts" and the program opens with the reading of a few faxes.

[key] AB= Art Bell RH= Richard Hoagland KJ= Ken Johnston

AB: From the high desert, in the great American Southwest, I bid you all good evening or good morning, as the case may be.

Welcome to another edition of the largest live overnight radio talk program in America - maybe in the world, actually.

This is "Coast to Coast AM" and I'm Art Bell.

Now, I know a lot of you - zillions of you - actually, want to know what is going on with Richard Hoagland and the news conference at the National Press Club, in Washington, D.C..

Well, you're about to find out. If they won't tell you - and many of them didn't - we will. Because coming up in just a moment is Richard Hoagland and Ken Johnston, who was NASA's data and photo-documentation supervisor.

That coming up in just a moment.

... (break for messages)

AB: Alright, this fax is typical.

"Dear Art, it is beginning to look like the only way most of us are going to learn what happened at the press conference, will be if you tell us tonight. I learned from the National Press Club, there were about 18 cameras and 60 guests at the briefing. C-SPAN told me they didn't cover it because they had "other things to do", and because they weren't told who would be there, besides Richard Hoagland".

AB: But there was coverage.

"Dear Art, I have a tape of the following report, with video graphics, which was broadcast on our local news at 5:00 PM, Channel 11, NBC, in Minneapolis - 'Does NASA Have Something to Hide?'

A private science research group, called 'The Mars Mission', thinks so.

The former NASA scientists and engineers and other researchers said today, that suppressed NASA and Soviet photographs show apparent lunar ruins that may have been created by another civilization."

AB: I want to certainly thank Adrian Abbott, at KOH, which actually is Citadel Communications, after hearing our show Friday night; actually a repeat of the Friday night show.

She got a hold of ABC, and ABC ran some actualities from the news conference. ABC ran a story on the news conference. So, our sincere thanks to our friends up at Citadel, and Adrian and the whole group.

The IRC chat channel, I understand, was something of a disaster. That's because the IRC chat channel is like anarchy. In other words, you've got a million people on there at once, and so that's what you get - a million people on there at once.

That's why I don't do it here on the air; it's simply too diverting, and too anarchistic, for my tastes... and so I guess that was a little rough.

In the meantime, knowing that you would want to know what really went on, I have a very tired Richard Hoagland and Ken Johnston on the phone, all the way from - I would guess - somewhere in Washington, D.C.


RH: Good morning. (tired chuckle)

AB: Hi.

RH: From high atop Capitol Hill, the view out my window here, is absolutely stunning.

AB: Is it?

RH: I am looking at the Capitol dome of the United States Capitol, in the center of power of the United States, the last reigning superpower of the western world.

And you know, I can't help thinking - as I look to the left I can see the Washington Monument and just beyond that I can see the White House all glistening in the dark on this beautiful spring evening -

I can't help thinking there's something radically wrong with this Republic ... where a group of scientists who were willing to come forward and talk about a problem with this government, can not get coverage on most of the news outlets in the country ... after they spent a lot of time and effort and put in a two hour major presentation - which was carried *live* to the rest of the world.

TeleMundo, carried this program from Miami, by satellite, live to all of South America, Spain, Portugal, the Mediterranean...

AB: Wow!

RH: I had a live conversation with the producer, afterwards. They were so excited by the photographs; they were so entranced by the analysis; they were so in tune with the historical aspect at what we are proposing and with what has to happen now...

And in this country, it's as if it did not happen...

And we're the ones that spent, guys, 20 billion dollars to go to the Moon.

Something - is - wrong.

AB: You're absolutely right.

World-wide coverage everywhere else in the World but *here*.

People were searching frantically: C-SPAN, CNN,... I guess ABC did give you some coverage?

RH: Well, the coverage is very intriguing, because you're getting a lot of conflicting reports that don't square with our reports. We had, as I said - there were like 15 to 16, 18 cameras, something like that. You know, you couldn't see the back because of the number of cameras!

C-SPAN did show up at 10:30. C-SPAN put in an appearance.

AB: Alright, I was getting all kinds of reports about C-SPAN.

C-SPAN said, "Well, we didn't cover it".

Then they said, "We did cover it, but we're not going to broadcast it". This is what they were telling people.

RH: Well, what I find bizarre, is if they are not going to broadcast it, why bother to show up?

AB: That's true.

RH: And why show up?... we started at 9:00 AM.

They didn't show up 'til 10:30. We went to 11:15 - actually 11:20, and then the Press Club had to ask us to close down, because they had another event happening in 40 minutes.

There was a major banquet taking place ... and this was at the grand ballroom. This was the center stage of the Press Club where lots of other events were scheduled, so they were very kind to us, to give us another 20 minutes over the time that we had reserved.

But, why show up, if you're not going to put it on the air?

AB: I agree. I agree.

And there were thousands of angry phone calls to C-SPAN.


I know a few things. C-SPAN put in a special telephone response thing - just for you, and so there was a very great deal going on, Richard.

RH: Did anybody tape that?

AB: Did anybody tape what?

RH: I actually did not call, so I didn't hear, but I understand that when you called up, you got one of these dial selector things: "If you would like to know about the Hoagland Press Conference, press ..." Something or other.

AB: That's right. I don't know if anybody taped it. I didn't, but I got a lot of reports on it, so I know it's true.

RH: Well see, I have not talked with Brian Lamb directly, and I would love to, because I don't understand the logic.

If you think we are silly and "out-to-lunch", fine. Ignore us. If you don't think we're silly and you think there's something interesting, why not put us on the air?

But if you think we're silly, and you still show up and you put it on tape so that there's a record of it, but you're not going to use it, that's kind of a waste of time and effort and money, isn't it?

AB: Well, I have to but wonder at a program that ran - instead of what would have been you, "live" - something about "FDR's Name Used in Ideological Arguments" or some obscure something.

RH: Whaaaat??

KJ: (chuckling)

AB: Yeah, something like that. Anyway,...

RH: I can hear someone chuckling in the background.

AB: Well, it's true. Ken Johnston is probably the chuckler and he's on the line with us, and Ken, you were NASA's data and photo-documentation supervisor. Is that correct?

KJ: Well, good-morning Art.

I'd like to kind of clear that up just a little bit.

I was working for one of the prime contractors for NASA at the time. That was Brown-Root and Northrop. It was a consortium between the Brown-Root Corporation and the Northrop Corporation at the Lunar Receiving Laboratory.

They had the contract for the processing of the lunar samples and my particular function was a supervisor of the data and photo control department, which handled all of the photographic, as well as written documentation about the lunar samples.

AB: So, everything that came in, went through you?

KJ: That's correct.

AB: Alright, how did you get involved with Richard Hoagland and why and what is it that you believe?

KJ: Well, that's a rather interesting story in itself.

About almost a year ago - as a matter of fact, May the second, it will be a year - when Mr. Hoagland was out in the Seattle, Washington area doing a conference; a seminar on the "Mars/Moon Connection"...

As a matter of fact, one of the gentlemen who listens to your program regularly, told me about Mr. Hoagland's research on Mars - the "Face" on Mars - something I had been interested in way back when I was more involved in the space program.

So, I'd read his book and I thought, "What a great opportunity to go in and hear the man speak in person."

And particularly since he's going to be talking about a connection between Mars and the program I was very intimately involved in: the Moon.

AB: Sure.

KJ: So, I wrote up a letter of introduction and kind of told him a little bit about myself, and what I'd done and been involved in - the photographic portion of that mission; and showed up a little bit early, in hopes I could get him to autograph my book.

One of his associates, Rhonda Eckland, read the letter and said, "Oh, don't move. You're the guy we've been looking for!"

RH: (Laughing heartily)

KJ: And I kind of stood there a little bit concerned, but she went in the back, and the next thing I know I'm being ushered in the back and introduced to Richard.

Long story short: After the seminar, we made arrangements for them to come over to my house the next day and take a look at some of the data that I'd maintained - about 500-1000 photographs in my own personal collection.

And I explained to them that I had put a complete set of all the photographic data from the Apollo missions, at my college alma mater - back home at Oklahoma City; at Oklahoma City University.

RH: And you gotta understand, Art; this was literally days after the bombing. And the idea that there was a placement archive of photographs sequestered in Oklahoma City, was pretty amazing to me - given the context of what was going on at the time.

AB: Well, I didn't even know that.

They were blown-up in that explosion?

KJ: No, no.

RH: No, no, no, no.

AB: O.K.

RH: But, the coincidence of that, of all the - you know - it's like that old joke from "Casablanca" - "Of all the gin joints in all the world".

The idea that Ken had placed these photographs, outside NASA, 30 years ago, in that university - literally across the street ...

KJ: It was. It was just a few blocks down the street and when I was in Oklahoma City - of course that area [was] cordoned off and you couldn't drive next to it - but I was able to drive close enough, that I could actually see the tragedy that had happened there. And of course the city was still in a state of shock.

AB: Alright. Ken, what do you think. First of all, did you have in that collection - photographs, that are now not available from NASA?

KJ: Well, from what I understand from the photographic experts, the prints that I have and the negatives and the film strips that I have - these were made off of the first generation, the originals.

And the data they are able to extract from it and things that we can see in those is so far superior to anything they've been able to get from other repositories, that I guess the answer is "yes", there's a lot of things in there that you can see that you wouldn't ordinarily be able to find on material that you would get from other sources.

AB: Alright, well you're their photographic person.

So, I'll ask you a hard question:

Is it because you've got a close-in generation of photographs that you can see these things, or in your opinion, were there things - that in later photographs - simply were erased?

KJ: I think I probably ought to defer that one to Richard, since they've analyzed it.

Mostly, I just wound up the person that had a little foresight to think that we shouldn't throw all of the stuff away.

AB: Hmm.

KJ: In other words...

RH: Okay, here is a very critical political question, Art, because when we got Ken's data, and there is a massive amount - it is voluminous - and we have only really, intensively looked at a tiny portion of a large collection of prints and other materials that he has bequeathed to us on this long-term loan arrangement.

AB: Yes.

RH: The first thing that I wanted to do of course, was to check with the official sources - with NSSDC, our friends here in Washington - that we went to a year ago and had the two-day meeting. We took eight people into the lab and spent two days looking at the photographic processes and the archiving and the record-keeping, and why were there duplicate numbers of the same frames that were different.

You know, the so-called 4822 problem and all that.

AB: Yes. Oh yes.

RH: And I had one member of our team literally drive 10,000 miles coast to coast with a very complex piece of equipment - from Los Angeles to Goddard - set it up and go through tens of thousands of feet of film stock - in preparation for this analysis.

And then Kerry Clark, my own administrative assistant now - who formerly ran a major photographic laboratory in New York and has been working with us for about three years on this - she went down to Washington from New York and spent two days with John, looking at the stills; the Hasselblad stills.

And we had taken the frame numbers for comparison, from Ken's data.

And the first thing we found, Ken - and I don't know whether you realize this - is that the numbers on the photographs you have, are not the same numbers that are now out of the archive in Washington, here.

AB: Hmm.

KJ: That's amazing.

RH: Particularly that panorama- the one where you can see the intense geometric haze above the horizon, 360 degrees around - that was misfiled.

And they looked and they looked and they looked, and it was only because the head of the lab had remembered seeing that - somewhere else, [from] his own memory, that he was able to go and put his hands on it.

And it was one of those puzzles, like well, "God, how'd this get in here? This shouldn't be in here. This is misfiled."

So, we put in an order - a very complex order - months ago, to get comparison photographs so we could look at them side by side, prior to this morning's briefing.

AB: Sure.

RH: And that order has been delayed and delayed and delayed and delayed, and finally - three days ago - I had Kerry call the head of the lab, NSSDC, and he had sworn that this had gone out by Fed Ex, a week ago, and he went to another office and found it sitting on someone's desk.

AB: Oh!

RH: And we did not get it in time to make the comparison.

So, in actuality, Art, I can't answer your question, except qualitatively - it appears that most of this information has disappeared from the current record, just because of generational problems.

AB: Well, a lot of things are found just sitting on desks, in Washington.

RH: Yes, in other words, there seem to be what we would term, "foot-dragging" - in the extreme.

And this is - this is a part of the pattern that we have noticed. I have not seen any overt examples, that I could put my finger on, in this lunar work - of outright retouching or air-brushing or faking of pictures, or destruction of data.

What I find, is a pattern of deception, a pattern of losing information, of mis-labeling it, of publishing catalogs where the photographs appear black.

When you order the picture, the picture is stunning and very good.

In other words, I see a pattern of - of trying to deter people, trying to dissuade people - from getting access to the data.

But, if you're persistent and you will not be deterred, ultimately the real data can be found.

And this gives me reason to believe... that someone, somewhere in NASA, realizes that someday this is going to come out.

AB: Alright.

RH: And you know that the major crime is not the crime.

It's always the cover-up of the crime.

AB: Sure.

RH: So this looks like plausible deniability, because at any point that we get in the process and find real data, someone can always say, "Oh, they ran out of ink", or "Oh, they had somebody in from the temp office who filed it wrong that day."

You can never pin them for the mistake.

AB: Alright Richard, very quickly, I've got to ask you about this:

A number of people said that the reason C-SPAN did not cover, was because you had refused to give them a list of who was going to be there.

RH: Well, we have held two press conferences before at the National Press Club on this investigation.

The first was in 1988, when the Russians launched to Mars. We thought it was important that they go and take pictures of Cydonia.

The second was on the date that the Mars Observer spacecraft was supposed to enter Mars orbit and we had planned to hold a press conference at that time, anyway, to encourage NASA - with Mars Observer - to take new pictures of Cydonia.

AB: Yes.

RH: So, we had a hundred show up. Alright? We had a hundred show up this time. We had 18 cameras and we specifically did not reveal Ken's name, or Marv Czarnik's name, or the other participants - to simply protect them from undue pressure, prior to laying out the data.

The fact that everybody else showed up, and didn't claim that we hadn't revealed their names; and that we had a track record of providing a good news story. We had promised them responsible people, formerly with NASA. We did go to the extent of saying that. We did go to the extent of saying specifically in terms of photographs were going to be discussed - from inside NASA - and what was on them.

The idea that you don't provide a name, I mean, in Washington - sources are commonly withheld until the last minute at a press conference.

This is not unusual at all.

AB: Sure.

RH: That, frankly, is an excuse that will not stand the light of day.

AB: Alright. Well, I had to run it by you.

Ken, you've looked at these photographs.

Do you see the same anomalies?

Do you see the same things that Richard Hoagland sees?

KJ: The more and more I've been exposed to looking at the data, and realizing - actually without the aid of any kind of instrumentation, you can actually see some of the anomalies on just the raw film and pictures itself.

One of the most striking things I have found, and one of the comments that one of the analysts was making is - if you really want to see what somebody doesn't want you to see on the Moon, look in the visor of the person being photographed.

And it was a rather unique experience. We started looking at that, with magnifying glasses and looking at the reflections on the curvature of the face masks of the astronauts on the lunar surface.

And there's some rather striking pictures that show what appears to be constructed structures, ladders, portals; some very, very interesting things in the visor in a number of pictures.

So, the answer is yes, there are definitely things you can see with the naked eye. And then when you start getting some of the enhancement and techniques that Alex Cook had done - just a young man on his own, in a darkroom working by himself...

AB: Ken, I'm going to ask you to hold it there.

KJ: Okay.

AB: We're breaking here at the bottom of the hour and we'll pick this back up out of the bottom of the hour.

A contractor for NASA - actually with all the data and photo documentation; A supervisor, Ken Johnston.

And Richard Hoagland.

Back in a moment.

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Transcribed by Tom Talley ([email protected]), Proofreading by James Shannon ([email protected]), HTML by Keith Rowland ([email protected]).

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