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Migration to a new home: The first Mars settlement

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“In an ideal world, the first Mars missions and settlements would be multi-state collaborations under the auspices of the United Nations.”

What was once considered science fiction may become reality in a few decades: life on Mars. The above quote comes from astrobiologist Michaela Musilova, who appears in this article as a voice on Mars colonization plans. She is particularly critical of private companies that approach space travel without regard to applicable standards – such as Elon Musk’s SpaceX, which shot a red Tesla Roadster into space without approval as a PR stunt in 2018. The car was not sterilized, a taboo in space travel.

The author Andreas Eschbach has discussed possible Mars colonization in his novel series The Mars Project. In his stories, the first Martian community is ruled by Earth. For this purpose, a governor was sent to Mars. However, the German author recommends the lesson from his books: “Ideally, every community governs itself, following democratic rules.” Nevertheless, he points out that the founders of the settlement could also make claims.

The space engineer Robert Zubrin, who founded the NGO Mars Society, is also thinking about a possible colonization of Mars. For Zubrin, the only possible political system for a Mars settlement is a system of freedom. This is the only way a settlement can grow and thrive. “Humans will only emigrate to Mars if there is a free system there that promotes creativity and innovation. Because innovations will be the most important export good,” says the expert.

In this article, the journalist Kim Berg manages to combine interesting perspectives on a possible human colonization of Mars and, in addition to the question of the political system, also addresses what lessons we could draw from the past about mistakes in colonizing the planet to prevent.

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