Today the moon was blasted out of Earth's orbit, apparently due to a mammoth explosion on the Lunar surface.
While nothing has been confirmed at this time, speculation within the scientific community suggests this catastrophe may stem from recent troubles with Nuclear Waste Disposal Area 2, a Lunar atomic waste dump maintained by Moonbase Alpha. The disposal area has recently been plagued by instability and numerous Green Peace protests.
Moonbase Alpha had been the subject of frequent debate and concern over the last few weeks. The base served as a way station for the Meta mission, which was to be launched by the International Space Committee. The Meta mission was the only manned mission mounted to investigate signals recently received from the planet Meta. These signals are believed to be intelligent in origin. The Meta probe craft and her spacedock were both destroyed in this incident - no word on whether the Meta expedition will be re-mounted at a later date.
Recently, rumors out of Alpha suggested the crew of the Meta mission might be falling prey to some sort of peculiar virus resembling radiation poisoning, but information from the moonbase was too sketchy to draw full conclusions. Speculation regarding troubles on the base rose to a fever pitch when Commander John Koenig was selected to replace a suddenly "suspended" Commander Gorsky as Alpha's governor and Executive Officer. Koenig arrived at Alpha on September 9, only four days before the disaster blasted the moon out of Earth's orbit.
Despite numerous seismic and tidal disturbances across the globe -- generated by fluctuating gravity fields accompanying the moon's departure -- work is already underway to determine the exact cause of the explosion which propelled the moon out of orbit. While a variety of theories are being explored, an explosion at Nuclear Waste Disposal Area 2 has emerged as the prime suspect, given last week's announcement that moon-bound shipments of atomic waste had been temporarily "delayed" for unspecified reasons.
British Physicist Ford Denesowicz-Plume indicates, "In theory, an explosion of a certain magnitude and longevity (on the Lunar surface) could indeed act as something of a propulsion system to push the moon away. It's not a very good theory, but it's a theory none the less."
Perhaps the darkest part of this tragedy are the lives of the 311 men and women staffing Moonbase Alpha. There has been no indication that the facility's staff could implement "Operation Exodus", a well-designed contingency plan which would have allowed them an immediate evacuation for Earth. At this time, it is assumed Alpha did not withstand the immense structural and gravitational forces which would have accompanied the incident - and it is presumed all souls were lost in the blast.