In 1953, a scientist published a book in which he predicted a man named ‘Elon’ would take humans to Mars and anoint himself the ‘Martian emperor’.
On December 30, Musk quoted a famous line from “Young Frankenstein” on Twitter: “Destiny, destiny. No escaping that for me.”
The quote refers to ideas about predestination, in which the life of every human is already predetermined either by divine design or by genetics.
Quoting this on Twitter led to a bombshell revelation – user Toby Li responded to him: “Speaking about destiny, did you know that Von Braun’s 1953 book “Mars Project,” referenced a person named Elon that would bring humans to Mars? Pretty nuts.”
Von Braun was the leading figure in the development of rocket technology in Nazi Germany and, later, a pioneer of rocket space technology in the United States. Between his twenties and early thirties, he worked on Nazi Germany’s rocket development program. After the war, he secretly moved to the US with around 1,600 other German scientists, engineers, and technicians, as part of a secret US intelligence program called Operation Paperclip.
Von Braun’s nonfiction book is not a standard essay; it uses a narrative to explain to the average reader how a trip to Mars might look in the Cold War.
The problem is that the user Toby Li’s explanation is not entirely accurate. In his book, Von Braun doesn’t say that a person named Elon would lead humanity to Mars but rather that the name of the leader’s position would be “Elon.”
This was clarified by another Twitter user, Pranay Pathole, who provided the English version of the book.
The paragraph in question says: “The Martian government was directed by ten men, the leader of whom was elected by universal suffrage for five years and entitled ‘Elon.’ Two houses of Parliament enacted the laws to be administered by the Elon and his cabinet.”
In a temporary update to his Twitter profile, Musk proclaimed himself imperator of Mars.