What Are Britain And America Hiding On UFOs?

Last week was a major week for individuals who believe that international governments are involved in a multi-layered cover-up regarding the existence of what are called, unidentified flying objects (UFOs). The British government admitted to the existence of files regarding one of the most controversial alleged UFO sightings and has stated that it will publish more files pertaining to UFOs on the official Ministry Of Defense website. Here is an article from Reuters/Compuserve that explains the issue:

British Military 'Suppressed UFO Info'

December 21, 2002

The British government tried to cover up one of the country's most famous sightings of an unidentified flying object, a parliamentary watchdog ruled Tuesday.

The "Rendlesham Files," which were finally published on the Internet Sunday, contain eyewitness accounts by U.S. Air Force officers at a military base close to Rendlesham Forest, near Ipswich in eastern England, who saw a brilliantly lit object land in the forest in December 1980.

The incident is widely regarded as one of the most significant UFO sightings --the British equivalent of the 1947 incident in which a spacecraft supposedly crashed at Roswell, New Mexico, with aliens aboard.

Several people had complained to the British parliamentary ombudsman, Ann Abraham, that the Ministry of Defense had refused to divulge full details of the Rendlesham witness accounts. Abraham ruled the ministry had "withheld three documents relating to reported sightings of unexplained aerial phenomena in 1980 -- the Rendlesham Forest UFO incident."

A ministry spokeswoman said the files had not been deliberately withheld and had always been available to anyone who asked.

In late December 1980, U.S. officers investigating what they thought must have been a crashed plane in the forest saw a triangular "strange glowing object" that sent farm animals into a frenzy.

"The object was described as being metallic in appearance and triangular in shape, approximately two to three meters (seven to 10 feet) across the base and approximately two meters (seven feet) high," reads a report in the file by Deputy Base Commander Lt. Col. Charles Halt.

"It illuminated the entire forest with a white light," he added. "The object itself had a pulsing red light on top and a bank of blue lights underneath. The object was hovering, or on legs."

Skeptics say the witnesses were merely seeing the beam from a lighthouse on the nearby coast.

But the report adds that the next day three depressions seven feet in diameter were found in the grass and that readings of beta and gamma radiation were 10 times higher than normal. Disturbances were also noted on air force radar at the time.

Later in the night, a second UFO was seen, described as a red sun-like light. "At one point it appeared to throw off glowing particles and then broke into five separate white objects," said the file.

A Ministry of Defense memo in the file notes that: "No evidence was found of any threat to the defense of the United Kingdom. In the absence of any hard evidence, the MoD remains open minded."

Until last week, only around 20 members of the public had seen the file. The government said it would also be publishing other files on reported UFO sightings on www.mod.uk.

The Rendlesham File contains a Ministry of Defense memo suggesting British requests for audiotapes made by the American officers at the time were brushed aside by the United States. Later reports by UFO enthusiasts claimed that photographs and tapes were taken away by senior U.S. officers.

Now, consider the recent action by the British government juxtaposed to a CNN article that displays the way the subject has been handled in the United States

Clinton aide slams Pentagon's UFO secrecy
By Richard Stenger, CNN.com
Tuesday, October 22, 2002 Posted: 3:09 PM EDT

All these hush-hush secrets and mysteries have John Podesta, formerly chief-of-staff for President Bill Clinton, in a tizzy. Podesta has made a plea to the Pentagon to release its classified files about this and other UFO incidents. "It is time for the government to declassify records that are more than 25 years old and to provide scientists with data that will assist in determining the real nature of this phenomenon," John Podesta told CNN.

Podesta is part of an initiative by a newly formed group called the Coalition for Freedom of Information that wants the Air Force to hand over documents on the so-called Project Moon Dust and Operation Blue Fly. These were secret operations that supposedly existed decades ago to investigate UFOs and retrieve objects of unknown origins--like anything that might have crashed in western Pennsylvania on that December night in 1965.

Podesta and company want to make one thing clear: They are not out to prove the existence of extraterrestrial life. They do want to legitimize the scientific investigation of unexplained aerial phenomena. So the group's first official act is to request the records through the Freedom of Information Act for that rural Pennsylvania UFO crash.

Regarding UFOs, Leslie Kean, a California-based freelance reporter who drafted the FOIA request, told CNN, "Most people don't think that there is evidence because they haven't looked for it. There's such a little green men mindset in this culture. It's hard to work your way through that."

Kean may be surprised to learn that most people DO think there is UFO evidence and that the government is hiding it. RoperASW and the Sci-Fi Channel recently conducted a nationwide poll of 1,021 adults and concluded the following:

72 percent of Americans believe the government is not telling the public everything it knows about UFO activity.

68 percent think the government knows more about extraterrestrial life than it is letting on.

The younger you are, the stronger your belief that the government is withholding information about UFOs and extraterrestrial life: 80 percent of respondents 18 to 24 years old said so, compared with 75 percent of those 25 to 34 years old and 73 percent of those 35 to 49 years old.

60 percent said the U.S. government should not withhold information about UFO sightings and potential encounters with extraterrestrial life when national security is not an issue.

Why didn't this news story involving such a respected political figure as John Podesta receive more national coverage? As it relates to the Clinton administration relative to UFOs, here is an intriguing excerpt from the book Rule By Secrecy:

In 1991, newly installed President Bill Clinton appointed his close friend and golfing buddy Webster Hubbell associate attorney general of the Department Of justice. In a recent memoir, Friends in High Places, Hubbell wrote that Clinton told him, "Webb...if I put you over at justice, I want you to find the answers to two questions for me. One, who killed JFK? And two, are there UFOs?" "He was dead serious," added Hubbell. "I had looked into both but wasn't satisfied with the answers I was getting."

The president and his top appointee in the Justice Department can't get a straight answer? Who's in charge?

Following Hubbell's disclosure, Dr. Steven Greer, director of the Center for the Study of Extraterrestrial Intelligence (CSETI), revealed that in 1993 he gave a three-hour briefing on the reality of UFOs to then-CIA director Admiral James Woolsey. Greer said Woolsey was stymied in his attempts to verify Greer's information and was unable to obtain the relevant documents in CIA files.

When it comes to this nation's deepest, darkest secrets, it appears there are powers even higher than the president of the United States and the director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

This statement, with each passing day, even as it relates to a potential war on Iraq, appears more true than ever.

Let us not forget what President Dwight Eisenhower warned this country about in his farewell address in 1961:

"In the counsels of Government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the Military Industrial Complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists, and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together."

- President Eisenhower - January 1961

We conclude with this article:

The Strange Relationship of the U.S. Government and UFOs
By Don Berliner, The Fund for UFO Research, Inc.; 2002

For more than a half-century, the U.S. government has been involved in the UFO mystery. It has mixed brilliant tactics with amazing blunders. The result is an intensified mystery and a steady drop in the public's confidence in its government.

The brilliant tactics, aimed at reducing the seriousness with which influential persons view the subject, have played a large role in the subject being surrounded by an atmosphere of idiocy. Regrettably, the rest of the blame for this unfortunate situation must be placed on irresponsible members of the private UFO community.

The press and the scientific community generally treat UFOs as a New Age topic, with all the nonsense that that implies. This was fostered, to a considerable extent, by scientists and journalists who might as well have been recruited for the purpose of publicly ridiculing those who claimed to have seen UFOs, along with anyone na´ve enough to admit to having an interest in the subject.

As a result, more than enough evidence to establish a case for the reality and novel nature of UFOs in any court of law has been swept under the carpet. Extremist, baseless conclusions have been stressed, to the near-total exclusion of sober reports from veteran airline and military pilots of close-range, daylight sightings of apparently manufactured vehicles having radical shapes and spectacular performance.

While reading details on the following major official blunders and admissions, please keep in mind that they were accompanied by sufficient disinformation to render them impotent, at least in the long term. They should have had considerable impact on press and scientific perceptions of UFOs, but in most instances the response was as if absolutely nothing had happened.

1947--The Roswell Crash
The best known case in UFO annals is also the most thoroughly investigated and certainly one of the most controversial. Its claim to validity rests on the testimony of first-hand witnesses, and on the desperation evident in recent U.S. Air Force attempts to write everything off, which will be dealt with later.

In early July 1947, something crashed on a sheep ranch northwest of Roswell, New Mexico. It was retrieved by the U.S. Army Air Force from Roswell Army Air Field. The commander of the base issued a news release stating that the remains of a "flying disc" had been recovered. The news spread around the world in minutes, much to the consternation of many at the airbase, which was the security-conscious home of the only nuclear-capable bombers in the world.

A few hours later, the commanding general of the 8th Air Force, Roger Ramey, announced that the recovered materials were from a common weather balloon. The press accepted his explanation without question and dropped the story. The Roswell crash slept for more than 30 years, until a private UFO investigator interviewed Major Jesse Marcel, who had been the base intelligence officer in 1947. Marcel described the strange materials he had recovered from the crash site: super-light and super-strong foil-like sheets, along with similarly strong and light I-beams that had unrecognizable symbols embossed on their sides.

The Air Force eventually set out to discredit the Roswell witnesses and succeeded only in making itself look foolish. This will be elaborated on in a later section.

1952--The Washington National Airport Sightings
For two long nights in July, the skies above Washington were filled with strange lights or lighted objects cavorting over the White House, the Capitol Building and the Pentagon. They were not merely seen from the ground but were seen by airline pilots in the air. They were also tracked on radar from at least two separate facilities. To this day, they have not been effectively explained.

The possibility, no matter how remote, that someone's unidentified craft were flying over one of the most sensitive areas in the country was enough to cause great consternation in official circles. The Air Force promptly called a news conference to try to explain what was going on.

On July 29, 1952, Major General John Samford, Director of Intelligence for the USAF, presided over the largest news conference since World War II. He gave the press the strong impression that nothing of substance had been in Washington's skies. It was probably the result, he said, of an atmospheric peculiarity called a "temperature inversion," which creates mirages.

This satisfied the press, since no one in authority pointed out the fallacy of the idea. It had long been known to scientists that temperature inversions cannot produce mirages more than 1░ above the horizon. Thus, anything seen high in the sky could not have been a mirage. A 1969 Air Force scientific study reinforced this knowledge.

The permanent files of the Air Force's 22-year UFO investigation, called "Project Blue Book" for most of that time, are in the U.S. National Archives. They show the explanation of the sightings for the night of July 19/20 as "temperature inversions," which is clearly false. The sightings of the night of July 26/27, which were all but identical to the first night's, are listed as "unexplained."

With no scientifically valid explanation for any of the July 1952 Washington-area radar/visual reports, we are left with a major mystery.

1955--Project Blue Book Special Report 14
At the end of 1952, the Air Force commissioned a study of the first five years of its UFO investigation by the private Battelle Memorial Institute. The civilian specialists looked at more than 2,000 sighting reports, concentrating on those having sufficient information for analysis. Then they drew their conclusions.

The summary of the study, published as Project Blue Book Special Report 14 in 1955, was completely negative on the subject of UFO reality: ". . . it is considered to be highly improbable that reports of unidentified flying objects examined in this study represent observations of technological developments outside of the range of present-day scientific knowledge." This strongly implies that all, or almost all, of the cases had solid, conventional explanations. They did not.

Of the approximately 2,000 reports having enough information to permit some reasonable answer to be suggested, more than half were concluded to be either "unknown" or no more than "doubtfully" explained. Fewer than half were listed as "explained" or "probably explained."

Elsewhere in the report was a set of pie charts showing that UFO witnesses having the greatest personal reliability were far more likely to have had unexplained sightings than were those having poor-to-doubtful reliability.

By concentrating on the content of Special Report 14 rather than its summary, a reasonable reader would almost certainly have to conclude that the first five years of the Air Force investigation of UFOs had been a failure. It was later learned that Project Blue Book's own figures for explained and unexplained cases were almost identical to those of the Battelle people.

1957--The Texas Car Stoppings
In November 1957, in the vicinity of Levelland, Texas, a new element was added to the UFO mystery: electromagnetic (EM) interference cases. In a period of a few hours, at least nine drivers reported a nearby large, glowing object and the concomitant failure of their car's or truck's electrical system. The drivers reported that as soon as the object left, their lights and radios came back on immediately, and they could easily restart their engines.

After hearing several such reports and doubting their validity, Hockley County Sheriff Weir Clem went out to see for himself. He soon spotted a "huge football . . . the blinding lights flashed on. No living human could believe how fast it traveled!" Deciding he had seen enough, the sheriff immediately returned to his office.

The Air Force sent an investigator who quickly concluded that all the excitement had been caused by a severe electrical storm. He said that violent lightning induced panic in the drivers, and the accompanying heavy rain temporarily shorted out their vehicles' electrical systems. Had this been the case, similar reports should routinely have been filed in all areas of the country that experience such storms. Similar reports have not, in fact, been filed.

What was most shocking about the Air Force "analysis" was that there had been no storm of any kind in the Levelland area that night. The next day's newspaper weather report confirms this, as does the sheriff's testimony. Moreover, a study of Weather Bureau records for the period by atmospheric physicist Dr. James McDonald revealed that the meteorological conditions precluded any storm from developing.

Without this handy "explanation," the Air Force is left with a collection of bizarre and baffling reports of a glowing object that apparently could render electrical systems inoperative and then allow them to return to life. This could easily be interpreted as a potential threat to national security, something the Air Force insists has never been suggested by any UFO report.

1964--The Landing at Socorro, New Mexico
On the afternoon of April 24, 1964, cruising City Patrolman Lonnie Zamora reported watching a strange craft descend, flames coming from its underside. A few minutes later he saw it parked on the desert floor, with two small, white-suited beings close by. He said the craft was light colored like aluminum, was shaped like an egg standing on end, and had a completely unfamiliar red insignia on its side.

It soon took off with a roar and a rush of flame, rose a few yards, then went completely silent and slowly flew off across the mountains. With a police sergeant who had responded to his radioed call for assistance, he inspected the landing site, noting charred rocks, scorched brush and impressions in the ground where, Zamora said, the spindly landing gear had sat. The two small individuals were last seen prior to the object's takeoff.

An investigation within a few hours by an Army officer from White Sands Missile Range and an FBI agent produced a detailed description of the event and strong support for Zamora's reliability as a witness. The Air Force's top UFO consultant, astronomer Dr. J. Allen Hynek of Northwestern University, arrived two days later to measure and photograph the landing site. It was one of the most thoroughly and speedily investigated UFO cases on record.

After hemming and hawing for several weeks, the Air Force realized it had no alternative but to conclude that what Patrolman Zamora said he saw--an egg-shaped craft and two small individuals--could not be explained in any conventional way. That is how the report remains in the permanent files of Project Blue Book, available for viewing on microfilm in the National Archives II, College Park, Maryland.

In light of just this one case, it is hard to understand how the Air Force can continue to insist that no unexplained UFO report constitutes evidence of advanced technology.

1966 - 1968--The University of Colorado Study
The most controversial event in the turbulent history of UFOs was the $500,000 study conducted for the Air Force by a group of scientists and academics under the leadership of Dr. Edward Condon at the University of Colorado. Documents and interviews show that the closest anyone (including the staff) ever got to learning the true purpose of the study came long after it ended, when a letter from the Air Force was found, clearly directing a pro-USAF and anti-UFO-reality conclusion. In other words, the Air Force bought its way out of the increasingly embarrassing business of UFO investigation.

As with previous studies conducted by or for the Air Force, this one had a summary and conclusions that clashed dramatically with the content of the report. Dr. Condon, who rarely missed an opportunity to flaunt his negative views in public, stated, "Our general conclusion is that nothing has come from the study of UFOs in the past 21 years that has added to scientific knowledge. Careful consideration of the record as it is available to us leads us to conclude that further extensive study of UFOs probably cannot be justified in the expectation that science will be advanced hereby."

The text of the lengthy report tells a very different story. Of some 90 cases considered, almost 30 were not explained. As an indication of the lack of serious intent of the study, only three unexplained cases from the Air Force's total of almost 600 were looked into. It should have been obvious that if there was anything truly mysterious or even mildly interesting about UFOs, it could probably have been found in the cases that the Air Force admitted it could not explain.

Among the conclusions for cases the Condon Committee staff failed to explain were these samples of several they obviously found quite baffling:

5/11/50, Oregon. "This is one of the few UFO reports in which all factors investigated, geometric, psychological and physical, appear to be consistent with the assertion that an extraordinary flying object, silvery, metallic, disk-shaped, tens of meters in diameter and evidently artificial, flew within sight of two witnesses."
5/7/52, Brazil. ". . . one of the strongest and demonstrably 'genuine' flying saucer sightings."
8/5/53, South Dakota. ". . . no tenable conclusions can be reached."
6/23/55, New York. ". . . this sighting defies explanation by conventional means."
8/13/56, England. "The preponderance of evidence indicates the possibility of a genuine UFO in this case . . . ." [Unfortunately, the intriguing phrase "a genuine UFO" is not defined.]
5/13/67, Colorado. "This must remain as one of the most puzzling radar cases on record."
Despite the failure of the Condon Committee's final report to explain more than 30% of the cases investigated, it had the desired effect. In December 1969, the Air Force's Project Blue Book investigation was shut down, and a 25-year period of official silence began.

1995--Roswell and Balloons
The Congressional District represented by the late Representative Steven Schiff (R, NM) included the sheep ranch where something crashed in July 1947. Growing public interest in that event led to his asking the General Accounting Office (GAO) in 1994 to search for documents that might shed some light on the events of 1947. All relevant agencies were asked to check their files.

Even before the GAO investigation was completed, the Air Force issued a huge report intended to settle the controversy by concluding that the wreckage came from a once-top-secret Project Mogul experimental balloon cluster. Testimony from most of the first-hand witnesses was ignored while completely irrelevant material filled hundreds of pages.

Nothing in the Air Force report or elsewhere directly supports the contention that a cluster of synthetic rubber balloons landed on the sheep ranch and fooled the likes of a World War II veteran intelligence officer into thinking he had his hands on unidentified materials. In fact, Professor Charles Moore, who headed the project launch team in 1947, stated in the 1995 Air Force report that any pieces of balloon that might have landed on the ranch would have deteriorated into "dark grey or black flakes or ashes" after just a few days in the hot summer sun. Had there been only such material on the ground, it would never have been noticed.

While the sheep ranch crash site was heavily guarded by military police during the recovery operation, the landing sites of other Project Mogul test balloons were treated quite casually, without any security procedures, according to the Air Force report.

The GAO was unable to find many of the needed records from the period surrounding the event, including administrative files, outgoing messages and the records of the military police unit that guarded both the crash site and portions of the air base where wreckage was packed up and loaded into cargo planes.

In September 1995, the GAO issued its only report on the subject, which concluded, "The debate about what crashed at Roswell continues."

1997--Roswell and Crash Dummies
On the 50th anniversary of the Roswell crash--early July 1997--the Air Force issued another large report. This one was optimistically subtitled, "Case Closed," and attempted to explain away the persistent stories of strange little bodies supposedly found in the wreckage at a second crash site some distance from the sheep ranch debris field.

The Air Force answer was a simple one: The allegedly alien bodies were nothing more than anthropomorphic crash test dummies, dropped by parachute over New Mexico to test new equipment. Apparently, witnesses had seen them and thought they looked like "aliens." Unfortunately, there were serious problems with the Air Force explanation.

The dummies weren't used in New Mexico until 1953, six years after the Roswell crash. The colonel conducting the news conference at which the report was released suggested that the witnesses had gotten the years confused, not realizing that some of them had moved away from New Mexico before 1953.
Crash test dummies are built to resemble adult humans (not skinny, fat-headed little guys) in their shape, height, weight and weight distribution, so that data acquired with them will be applicable to humans. To explain the difference in height between the six-foot dummies and the reported three-and-a-half- or four-foot "aliens," the Air Force suggested that witnesses had seen dummies whose legs had broken off in hard parachute landings. Such damaged dummies would, of course, have been described as legless dummies rather than as short and peculiar corpses.
To explain the very large heads attributed to what were said to be "aliens," the Air Force showed a photo of an airman whose face was swollen as a result of injuries. But only the man's face was swollen, not his entire head, which would have involved multiple skull fractures. And his eyes were swollen almost completely shut, like the loser in a boxing match, while the "aliens" were described as having huge black eyes.
With only these poorly supported Air Force claims, this pivotal case is left without any rational scientific explanation. This leaves us wondering why such transparently false explanations were foisted on the public, assuming the Air Force actually knew what really happened 50 years earlier.

1997--The CIA and Spy Planes
In a report published at about the same time as the Air Force's "crash dummy" revelation, the Central Intelligence Agency tried to write off thousands of UFO reports as mistaken observations of secret spy planes. It ended up writing fiction.

The first demonstrably incorrect statement was that there had been a major increase in UFO reports immediately following the first test flight of the prototype U-2 spy plane in August 1955. A simple count of cases in the files of Project Blue Book (which the CIA admits it used) shows that there had actually been a major decrease.

Then the CIA claimed that half of almost 9,000 UFO sightings made between mid-1955 and late1969 had been mistaken observations of U-2 and later SR-71 spy planes. Since those airplanes cruise too high to be seen from the ground (at more than 70,000 feet), this could not be the case. Moreover, one of the hallmarks of UFO descriptions in that period was their spectacular maneuvers, including right-angle turns at high speed. Both the U-2 and the SR-71 are among the least maneuverable airplanes used by the U.S. military.

Thirdly, the CIA claimed it had conspired with the staff of the Air Force's Project Blue Book to conceal the alleged sightings of spy planes by having them falsely labeled as obscure types of atmospheric phenomena. Had this been the case, several thousand UFO reports for 1955 - 1969 in the permanent files of Project Blue Book would be blamed on ice crystals, temperature inversions, and so on. But the actual total is barely three dozen.

Why the CIA would invent such an easily disproved story is unknown.

1948 - 1969--Hundreds of Officially Unexplained Reports
For almost 22 years, the U.S. Air Force collected reports of UFO sightings, a total of more than 12,500. Of these, 584 were permanently and officially declared to be "unidentified," which was defined as those cases for which there appeared to be sufficient information so that some conventional explanation should have been suggested, but none was. There was a completely separate category for cases having "insufficient information," although it was frequently suggested that all the "unidentified" reports would probably have been explainable if only more information had been available. This would make sense only if the additional information was in direct conflict with what led to the "unidentified" conclusion in the first place.

If there was any substance to UFO reports, it should be evident in the "unidentified" examples, as the others allegedly had been explained as conventional phenomena. It also should have been obvious that if anything was to be learned from all this, it should come from a targeted study of the 584 "unidentified" reports. There is no evidence that any such study was ever conducted by or for the U.S. Air Force.

The basic information is available in the microfilmed files of Project Blue Book, open to the public at the National Archives II, College Park, Maryland, or in the archives of the Fund for UFO Research, Inc. From this material it is apparent that a sizeable proportion of the "unidentified" reports came from professional pilots (military and airline), other professional aviation and military people, scientists, engineers and others having extensive and appropriate training and experience.

This large group of "unidentified" reports displays striking patterns of UFO appearance and behavior. Those seen in the daytime (the majority in the 1947 - 1970 era) are usually described as sharp-edged, with metallic-looking surfaces and simple geometric shapes, unlike any known aircraft. Their behavior includes well-kept formation flights, along with silent supersonic flight, spectacular acceleration and violent maneuvers of which even the latest high-performance conventional aircraft are incapable.

Thus, the official files reveal information challenging the final conclusions of the U.S. Air Force and the Department of Defense--that no evidence was ever found of advanced technology, of a threat to national security or of an alien presence.

Over the past half-century, the U.S. Air Force and other agencies have tried, with great success, to convince the American press and the scientific community, although not the public, that UFOs are of no importance and should be ignored or at least laughed at. To do this has required, on the part of the government, a degree of contempt for the facts, for logic and for the American people that has few if any parallels in American history.

Veteran military and airline pilots who had the nerve to report their close-range sightings of radical-design, high-performance UFOs have repeatedly been ridiculed by armchair experts who insisted they had seen balloons, mirages or, amazingly, other airplanes. Average citizens who reported their equally baffling experiences were assumed to be na´ve or worse.

Whatever UFOs may be, and the staff of the Fund for UFO Research does not know, they constitute an annoying long-term mystery that deserves to be treated far more scientifically than it has been to date.

For more information on the preceding incidents, as well as on other aspects of the UFO mystery, contact The Fund for UFO Research, Inc. at E-mail rofuf@konsulting.com; Web site www.fufor.com.

Tuesday, December 24, 2002