Friday, November 18, 2005

Exopolitics

I have spent a great deal of time in the last few weeks looking over the Exopolitics sites that Dr. Michael Salla has created. I have followed many of the links that Dr. Salla listed. I expected very little in the way of evidence to be associated with this information given the nature of the discussions I have read. I wasn’t disappointed. There is little of substance there.

There is a great deal that is derived from the so-called whistleblowers testimony, taken by Dr. Salla as the truth, the whole truth and nothing by the truth. However, if it turns out that some of these whistleblowers have been less than honest, then much of his theoretical framework will collapse. This means simply, that if the whistleblowers are not telling the truth, or are embellishing their role in the recovery and investigation of UFOs, a structure that uses that information as its basis is fatally flawed.

Dr. Salla puts a great deal of faith in the testimonies of people such as Cliff Stone, a retired Army Sergeant First Class; Robert Dean, a former Command Sergeant Major; Philip Corso; who retired as a lieutenant colonel and who died several years ago, and Bob Lazar who claimed to have worked at the super-secret Area 51. There is good evidence that each of these people has embellished his role in relation to UFO evidence, and in some cases they told outright lies.

Sergeant First Class (SFC) Clifford Stone

Take as a quick example, the tales told by Cliff Stone. He says he was not trained as a clerk-typist when he joined the service but his Army records show only training as a clerk. His record shows that his only assignments were as a clerk or an admin specialist or in other roles in that arena. His record shows that he served in Vietnam, though it is not clear how long he was actually in-country. His records indicate that he was a clerk as the Army mission in Vietnam wound down and that he had no combat experience. He was awarded no decorations for valor.

Stone has said that when he reported for duty in Vietnam, he requested a combat assignment because he had no training as a clerk. His request was denied by the company first sergeant. He said that, during his tour, he would periodically crawl out of the base camp, through the wire, to engage the enemy. There is nothing in his record to suggest this is true. When he completed his Vietnam assignment, he returned to the United States and to the mundane world of clerk-typist.

Most Vietnam veterans would dispute Stone’s claims of personal firefights with the Viet Cong and his one-man missions outside the wire because they simply know better. Individual soldiers did not crawl through the base camp wire to engage the enemy. Those who tell similar stories have universally been shown to be lying about those events.

Stone and the Kecksburg Crash

To provide an additional example of embellishment, Stone has claimed that he was involved in the Kecksburg UFO crash. His role seems to have changed over the years, as additional information has come to light. For example, Stone had said originally he called the Unsolved Mysteries hotline after they ran their Kecksburg UFO story. Stone said he had personally witnessed the armed military convoy, helmeted soldiers and a flatbed truck carrying the damaged UFO out of Kecksburg. On Sightings in 1992, Stone made a similar claim (which means the claim is documented on videotape). Stan Gordon, the main researcher into Kecksburg, said that Stone told him that he, Stone, was a civilian and that a friend at Lockbourne AFB, Ohio, called to tell him that the UFO that was in the news had been brought to the base. The friend (conveniently unidentified), picked up Stone and drove him to the base where Stone hid in the car in the parking lot outside a back gate and saw the convoy carrying the UFO arrive, stay awhile and then leave for Wright-Patterson AFB, also in Ohio.

Stone has not renewed these claims since 1992 or 1993. Now, however, when challenged about his involvement in this case, Stone claims that he "remote viewed" the site. He hadn’t physically been there but had "seen" it. This seems to be a new twist to explain how Stone, then a 16 year-old student living some 90 miles away from Lockbourne AFB and not all that close to Kecksburg, might have been in a position to see the convoy. So, in all, Stone has claimed to have been in Kecksburg, then, rather than being in Kecksburg to witness the convoy and all the ancillary events, he changed the story to having seen the convoy arrive at one Air Force base before it was transferred to another. And, finally he remote viewed it. So, which version is the truth?

Stone and Project Moon Dust

As added evidence, if such is necessary, Stone has suggested that it was his research and his inside knowledge of government UFO investigations that lead us to the secret UFO project known as Moon Dust. He claims to be the first to reveal anything about it but when challenged to provide specific information, he has failed to do so, giving the excuse that he is not free to discuss all aspects of his military service.

What this means is that we know the code name of Project Moon Dust was changed after it was compromised in the mid-1980s. Since Stone suggests that he was the source of the original information for Moon Dust he released classified information and since he was part of that project, at least according to him, he should know the new, and classified code name. But, when we asked for the new name, he said that he wasn’t free to give out that information. Stone "cherry picks" the information he shares with us, but the real point is that nothing he provided was key to learning anything new. In other, more precise words, he told of nothing that wasn’t already available in the UFO community through other sources. But more importantly, there is no way to verify his claims because he would refuse to answer the specific questions, claiming that he was not free to release the classified details. With no way to verify his claims there simply is no reason to accept his story as being true.

Command Sergeant Major (CSM) Robert O. Dean

Robert O. Dean appeared on the UFO scene with the claim that, as a senior NCO at NATO in the 1960s, he saw a top-secret document he called "The Assessment." It was allegedly a report that detailed the recovery of a crashed extraterrestrial ship and the alien pilots.

Dean said that he had been a command sergeant major, which is the top enlisted grade in the Army. He said that he served at NATO Headquarters, and that he held a Cosmic Top Secret clearance while assigned there. As near as I can tell, all these claims accurately reflect reality.

As a brief, side note, many have suggested there is some significance to the term Cosmic Top Secret, believing that this proves some sort of a connection to the extraterrestrial. Cosmic Top Secret, however, is just a level of classification at NATO to determine that the clearance or the classified information comes from NATO as opposed to another organization.

"The Assessment"

Dean claimed when he spoke in Roswell that he was on duty about two in the morning in NATO’s War Room and was having trouble staying awake. Then, in a colossal breach of security, "an Air Force bird colonel thumped it ["The Assessment"] down on my desk…" In an interview published in the winter 1995-96 issue of UFO Update AZ magazine, Dean went a little farther saying, "…this Air Force controller, a bird colonel…pulled this thing out of the vault and he said, ‘Here, read this.’ This will wake you up."

Dean later amended the story saying that one night, while on duty, he removed "The Assessment" from SHAPE's security vault. In this version he says nothing about the Air Force colonel who dropped the document on his desk.

In yet another version, Dean suggested that when he arrived at SHAPE for a tour there, he learned the study was already underway and that having the required clearance, he often studied the pages while passing time in the quiet evenings. Except that having the required clearance didn't automatically give him a "Need to Know," and without that, he wouldn't have had access to the document. His position at SHAPE certainly didn't require that he be brought in on something like "The Assessment." In fact, his assignment at NATO does not suggest a need to deal with any classified material and certainly nothing classified as Cosmic Top Secret.

The reason for the "need to know" requirement is to limit access and reduce the possibility of compromise. In this case it seems the regulations would have worked had Dean not violated them. He then leaked the information to the rest of us. That is, if we can believe this is true.

An Investigation of "The Assessment"

Others inside the UFO community, especially those in Great Britain because some of the top NATO officers are from Great Britain, attempted to verify the story. Timothy Good, author of Above Top Secret and Alien Liaison working with a high-ranking British officer, Admiral of the Fleet, The Lord Hill-Norton, undertook an investigation about "The Assessment."

It should be mentioned here that Hill-Norton was a friend of Good and that he had written introductions to both of Good’s books. This suggests that he isn’t a governmental dupe or of a skeptical bent. He said that the report interested him, especially the alleged connection to NATO and he suggested that he and Good attempt to learn the truth about it.

Dean suggested that a number of academics had been brought into the research after the craft had been found. Dean said that Professor Sir Fred Hoyle had worked as a consultant. Good wrote to Hoyle telling him Dean had said that he was one of the "top brains consulted," and that he, Hoyle, had made a statement to the press on May 10, 1971, that suggested Hoyle believed the probability of extraterrestrial and/or extra dimensional beings.

Hoyle’s response? "There is not an element of truth in this story. There was no statement to the press."

There is always the possibility that there was some kind of a misunderstanding, but Hoyle’s response is quite definitive. He was not involved in any of this contrary to Dean’s claim.

There were others named by Dean and who were found and quizzed. Many of these were high-ranking officers inside of NATO and it could be argued that their denials are their attempts to protect the information. It could be argued that they would have to answer in the negative because the information would still be highly classified. However, the questions asked and the answers given, don’t seem to suggest that the officers were anything less than honest and that they were not protecting a still classified document.

Good and Hill-Norton told Rear Admiral Michael Moore, the one time Deputy Assistant Chief of Staff Operations to the Supreme Commander SHAPE Europe, that Dean had claimed there was a UFO recovery in Europe and what did had been said about "The Assessment." Moore eventually wrote that they, meaning he and his assistants, had gone to considerable trouble to trace the officers who had been mentioned by Dean as having worked at SHAPE. In other words, they were attempting to learn as much as they could and were trying to verify the existence of "The Assessment."

Eventually Moore would write to Good telling him that he had found no trace of "The Assessment" at the Headquarters, and that he and his staff had searched carefully. They had been told by many that the document was nonexistent.

That certainly didn’t look good, but then, it only proved that "The Assessment," if it existed, was well hidden. In the world of classified information, especially with a document that is highly classified, it might be difficult to find any trace of it. It can be argued that the mere confirmation of the existence of the document is a violation of security. In rare cases that is true but the vast majority of the time, an admission of the existence of a document does not compromise it.

There were other troubles with Dean’s story. In 1992, Dean met with Good and Hill-Norton while Dean was traveling in Europe. After that meeting, Hill-Norton wrote to Good, telling him that he thought Dean was telling the truth. He did note, however, that although Dean claimed to have been in the Intelligence Section, his records showed that he was in the Language Group. Dean provided a document dated on June 20, 1963 that related to his clearance with SHAPE’s intelligence section but it was found to be a fake.

The Cover of "The Assessment"

Other documentation also failed to be authenticated. Dean provided a color photograph of the cover page of the English edition of "The Assessment." Tim Good passed it along to Moore. When Moore left SHAPE, the cover was passed on to Dr. Pedlow, Chief Historian at SHAPE. Pedlow took "The Assessment" apart. He wrote that those at the SHAPE Historical Office had spent two years trying to find "The Assessment." The color photograph of the cover, supplied by Dean, proved to be the downfall of Dean’s tale.

Pedlow detailed the steps they all had taken to find any reference to, or any indication that "The Assessment" was a real document. This included the office of the US National Military Representative of SHAPE, the files of the International Military Staff at NATO, Special Collections Division of the National Defense Library in Washington, D.C., and, quite naturally, their own historic files. Pedlow wrote, "Nowhere have we been able to locate evidence that such a document ["The Assessment"] ever existed."

Pedlow went even further. He wrote that the Cosmic Top Secret (CTS) control number did not use the proper format, that it was in the wrong place on the document and worst of all, there was a lack of a file reference number. All SHAPE documents from the time of "The Assessment" contained a series of numbers and letters that showed the originating office and subject area.

It goes on. The statement the document is classified NATO COSMIC TOP SECRET is incorrect. And the use of the code word, ULTRA on the cover sheet, gives it away. Pedlow wrote that to his knowledge, and that of his staff, ULTRA had never been an access control code in the NATO system. ULTRA referred to a project under British control during the Second World War.

In the end, Pedlow said that he was skeptical that a document like "The Assessment" ever existed. Both Good and Hall-Norton concluded that "The Assessment" was not real. When Good gave Dean the results of the investigation, Dean wrote that he had never said that he knew the photographs of the cover sheet were accurate and legitimate. He was, in other words, attempting to spin the negative results.

It can be suggested that these negative comments and results do not prove that Dean was less than honest. It can be said that those contacted had good reason to deny the existence of "The Assessment." They were merely protecting a highly classified report even though Dean had supplied what was supposed to be the cover of that document.

But the problem is that the investigation was made by men who clearly accepted the extraterrestrial as real and who were not part of a government debunking effort. In all the searches, neither Good nor anyone else had been able to corroborate the existence of "The Assessment." So, while Hall-Norton and Good believe that Dean was telling the truth about his military service they no longer believed there was a document called "The Assessment."

Finally, arguing in a somewhat circular fashion, Dean has suggested that he hasn’t been prosecuted for revealing the highly classified information because it would require an open court case that the government wants to avoid. This, he suggests proves he is telling the truth. The government doesn’t want to admit that "The Assessment" is real. To prosecute, they would have to admit that Dean had revealed classified information. But maybe the reason he has avoided prosecution is because he violated no laws, he revealed no classified information, and therefore broke no law. In other words, if "The Assessment" never existed, there would be no reason to prosecute him.

Finally…

If these two testimonies and already the discredited tales of Philip Corso (for more information on Corso please see http://www.cufon.org/cufon/corso_da66.htm) and Robert Lazar (for more information http://www.serve.com/mahood/lazar/lazarmn.htm and http://www.ufowatchdog.com/hall3.html) were used to develop an exopolitics theme, then aren’t those theories badly flawed? And if these testimonies are removed from exopolitics, then won’t it be necessary to rethink the underlying themes of exopolitics? And finally, just what good are theories and suggestions for human behavior as it relates to alien visitation if those theories are the products of invention and fabrication?

In other words, isn’t it time for the proponents of exopolitics to properly vet the backgrounds and the tales of the whistleblowers rather than simply defend them? Isn’t time for us to stop embracing every tale we are told that appeals to us simply because it appeals to us? Shouldn’t we instead search to find the truth in a field with the voices of the charlatans seem to drown out the voices of reason.

7 comments:

Paul Kimball said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Paul Kimball said...

Kevin:

Exactly so - but this is nothing new. Some ufologists continue to tout any number of alleged "whistleblowers" as legit when it had been demonstrated that they are not (or, at best, are unreliable). Wilbert Smith pops to mind immediately, although there are many others (Gerald Anderson, come on down; Glenn Dennis, pleased to meet you... etc, etc). Worse, if you actually try to examine the veracity of their claims, which must include an examination of their personal record, and even character (goes to credibility), then you get accused of character assassination.

Until a more thorough vetting process is in place, wherein ufologists judge people and their claims on the merits, as opposed to whether or not those people and their claims happen to conveniently re-inforce the pre-exisiting beliefs / conclusions of the ufologist, then ufology will continue to flounder.

Paul

Old Gary said...

Mr. Randle, I would love to see your comments some day on Linda Moulton Howe. A recent interview with her in Phenomena was packed with interesting stuff.

Old Gary said...

I suppose I should have given you an address to read her interview:

http://phenomena.cinescape.com/

Terry's Bazaar said...

In my opinion the majority of NATO countries and NATO itself would not be entrusted with such a document. Only our UK ally received back channel communications.

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