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This went around last year and was partially true.

http://www.snopes.com/science/mars.asp

Mars' extraordinarily close approach to Earth will culminate on 27 August 2003, when the red planet will come within 35 million miles (or 56 million kilometers) of Earth, its nearest approach to us in almost 60,000 years. At that time, Mars should appear to be approximately 85 times brighter in the sky than it does ordinarily.

We should note that although Mars' close proximity to Earth in August 2003 will be a rare occurrence, the red planet comes almost as near to us every 15 to 17 years. To the unaided observer, Mars won't really appear significantly larger or clearer this August than it does at those intervals.
 
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