Forget the headline. I ranted about things like that not too long ago. I do apologize.
These are Martian dust devils.
But: Picture yourself living in Kansas or, maybe better, somewhere out on the vast inner Asian plains. You’re sitting there in your tent, seeing that first tornado approaching. It’s not a big one, just a dust devil, nothing special. You keep doing whatever you are doing.
Then, another one appears. And another one. And another one.
Wow, that one’s big, too! You stop to watch. You see them grow in size and in number. You realize they approach you and your tent.
Eat your heart out, Mark Watney!