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The Summit attendees read like a Who's Who list of America's mortal enemies.

For the Summit at Taurus City the People's Republic of China was represented by Special Minister Liu Chou-Lai, appointed and trained by the Communist Party solely for the event on the Moon.

The Soviet Union was represented by the platoon of cosmonauts Astrodyne had contracted to bring up the Earth delegations, including their old friends Aleksei Leonov, now a Field Marshal, and General Oleg Makarov.

The Islamic Republic of Iran sent five mullahs from the Revolutionary Council. The Soviets had to use only male pilots to bring them up, because they refused to get into a space vessel piloted by women. A dozen less prominent 'non-aligned' nations from Africa and Latin America, which fell neither within the Soviet sphere nor the American sphere, were also represented at Taurus City. What they had in common was a long saltwater coastline, and the gift they were soon to receive would be far beyond imagination .

The United States leaned on their closest allies to spurn the Summit, including most of Europe, the entire British Commonwealth, Japan, and Saudi Arabia. To Lilith's disappointment, the state of Israel also refrained from sending a representative. As a natural result of this embargo, the list of attendees from Earth read a little bit like a Who's Who of America's traditional enemies. But in a case of do as I say, not as I do, old John Glenn came up from the Taurus-Littrow base to keep an eye on the proceedings. Lilith warned him the US would probably receive a big fat nothing.

Glenn was most dismayed to discover the Summit would be televised globally, because this would instantly blow the cover off the Ford Administration's ongoing narrative, now a decade in the making, that only NASA was present on the Moon. The US would not broadcast the coverage, of course, but soon it would become common knowledge worldwide that elohim and nephilim existed, that there were two habitable worlds at Alpha Centauri, and that there was a staging area between them and Sol called the Land We Know. Americans would ask why President Ford had kept all of this hidden from them.

The answer ran far deeper than politics and was rooted in Protestant theology. Although he started as a Mid-west checked pants Republican, by the middle of Jerry Ford's second full term his cabinet was over-represented by Southern fundamentalist Moral Majority types. John Glenn's reports from the Moon put them in a constant state of future shock. Holding the Bible to be the inerrant, literal word of God, they didn't know what to do with the knowledge that their God was really a vast female alien made of dense nuclei in the heart of the sun, that Jesus was really the daughter of her and the devil, and that there were two other aliens, including one that ran around wearing the body of a Jewish woman.

There were anthropological considerations to take into account. From the long, sad history of the collision of colonizing European cultures with the more primitive aboriginal cultures in the lands they invaded, one could easily imagine Earth itself, in the aftermath of the arrival of an advanced alien civilization, becoming a sort of galactic "Human Reservation" utterly dependent on handouts and perhaps becoming a seedy haven for gambling or other pleasures that might be forbidden elsewhere in the universe. A cover-up could buy time to prepare the world for the shock and perhaps prevent such a post-contact malaise from taking hold. This would be a legitimate reason for the cover-up, but it was not the real reason.

There have always been those who seek to cling to safe and familiar things in a world that appears to grow more and more dangerous and complex every day. These relentless change represented a quantum leap in the world's danger and complexity. To those who sought to steer America's schools away from teaching evolution and "old earth geology" and towards a curriculum of a special creation of the Earth by God 6,000 years ago, the changes raised questions that their closed, self-contained, strictly biblical theology could never answer.

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