I have said it before and I’ll say it again. Nothing in the world of UFOs is ever easy or simple. It seems that almost any question will not have an easy answer and there are times when the more complex the answer the more it seems that someone is engaging in rationalization.
Take, for example, Lance Moody’s question about Jesse Marcel and the debris in Ramey’s office (seen here). He believes that since Marcel was quoted as saying that if he is in the picture it’s the real debris, the debate is over. Clearly the photographs of Marcel in Ramey’s office show him with the remains of a rawin target and a weather balloon. But, is it really that easy?
Of course not. First, the quote originally appeared in The Roswell Incident by Charles Berlitz and William Moore. This book was described by Moore as a disgraceful hodgepodge of fact and fiction. Moore, himself, offered three different versions of quotes by Marcel about the debris and the pictures, each changed to reflect the latest information. I think we can safely reject the Marcel quotes in that book because we don’t know what Marcel actually said to Moore, how Moore interpreted it, and how it might have been changed as new information was discovered.
Oh, if it was only so easy. But Stan Friedman got Marcel to sit down in front of the cameras for a documentary and Marcel, in that documentary, says the same thing. If he’s in the picture, it’s the real debris. If it is anyone else, then it is not.
So, we’re back where we started and Lance’s question takes on added importance because we see Marcel making the claim. How do we answer Lance’s question?
I could argue that the material on the floor in Ramey’s office was there before Marcel arrived, if the time lines have been reconstructed properly, and if that is true, then that couldn’t be the stuff that was found in Roswell. I could argue that Ramey was telling reporters, before Marcel arrived, that it was all a weather balloon and that the stuff on the floor reflected that explanation.
Yes, I know that some of this is speculative and there will be arguments about the validity of such a claim, but we do have some very good documentation and the timing of some of these things seems to be off when corrected for time zones. All this implies that the cover story was in place before Marcel could have arrived, if the take off time as given by Robert Skirkey in Roswell is correct... and please note that I am qualifying all this because we are dealing with old memories here and we have no documentation about the take off times.
Of course, I can point out that the press release written by Walter Haut, and clearly ordered by William Blanchard, gives us a window of times. I can suggest that none of this blew up until after the press release was put onto the various wire services and there would have been no reason to order Marcel, or anyone else to Fort Worth until then, but again. It is speculation.
I could argue that Colonel Thomas DuBose, who was in Ramey’s office(Ramey kneeling and DuBose seated), said, on video tape and to various others including Don Ecker and Kay Palmer, that the stuff on the floor had been switched and it was not the stuff found in Roswell.
Yes, I know Jaime Shandera challenges this and he did interview DuBose, but he made neither tape recording nor took notes. We are left to accept, or reject, his version based on that, and in the face of the recordings of DuBose that do exist and can be reviewed, it seems that his claims should be rejected.
So, this suggests that the pictures were staged and that the stuff that was flown in from Roswell was not the stuff on the floor. Testimony from those who were there at the time make this clear whether it was DuBose who makes the claim or Marcel... more on this later.
Irving Newton, the weather officer, told me that he had just arrived at the weather office, which was about 6 p.m., when he got a call from Ramey (or Ramey’s aide which would have been the same thing, militarily speaking) and was told to get over to the general’s office immediately. If he didn’t have a car, he was to steal one, his words, not mine. When he arrived, he was told that he was supposed to identify the stuff on the floor, but was also told that the general thought it was all part of a weather balloon. In other words, Newton didn’t have to identify it for Ramey because he already new and the officer talking to Newton wanted to make sure that Newton gave the right answers.
More important, we know that Newton went to work on the evening shift that began, for him, at six. But we also know, based on other documents, that Ramey was already telling people that the Roswell find was a weather balloon, and that Major Edwin Kirton was telling the Dallas Morning News it was a weather balloon thirty minutes or more before Newton could get to Ramey’s office, which means the identification of the balloon and rawin target had already been made.
All this is interesting and certainly argues against the material on the floor being what was found near Roswell, but we still have that statement by Marcel. This is a real problem and argues most persuasively against anything extraterrestrial being found.
There is, however, one other significant bit of information. Back in the 1980s, Johnny Mann was a reporter for a television station in New Orleans and he was going to do a series of reports on UFOs. He wanted to interview Charles Hickson and Calvin Parker, which is irrelevant to us. He also interviewed Houma, Louisiana resident, Jesse Marcel (seen here), even taking him to Roswell to walk those fields again. Mann made it clear that Marcel wasn’t exactly sure where he had been and that one stretch of New Mexico desert looks like any other so Mann didn’t care. They were in the general vicinity, which was close enough for his story and for filming purposes.
Mann, of course, had a copy of The Roswell Incident and he flipped it open to the pages showing the pictures of Jesse Marcel with the weather balloon debris. Mann showed the pictures to Marcel and said, "Jess, I gotta tell ya, that looks like a weather balloon."
Marcel replied, "That’s not the stuff I found."
Johnny Mann, who has no dog in this fight, who wouldn’t care what was said as long as it was the true, made it clear to me, that Marcel recognized the material in the picture as a balloon.
This exchange was overheard by the cameraman, so that it is not single witness, but can be verified. And yes, I know the skeptics will point out that this is hearsay, but I would suggest that Mann has no reason to invent this tale and it can be corroborated. And I should point out that I sought out Mann rather than he coming to me.
So, we have Marcel saying that if he is in the photographs, it is the real stuff and then looking at the two specific photographs of himself with alleged debris saying that it’s not the stuff he found. I’m not going to speculate about what this means. I will point out that it isn’t the black and white issue that Lance and others believe it to be, and it proves that nothing about this is ever simple or easy.
Call it rationalization if you want, but it is about investigation and looking at all the facts. Does this bit of information lead us to the extraterrestrial? No. But it does suggest there is more here than a Mogul balloon because the evidence and testimony isn’t explained by that either.
And it makes everyone wonder what the military was trying to hide. Mogul was all over the place in July 1947, from the discussions by the Mogul team with everyone they thought might help to pictures in the newspapers a day or two after the 509th Bomb Group told the world they had a flying saucer. Dr. Albert Crary, the leader of the balloon launch expedition even used the name Mogul in his unclassified diary and his field notes.
In this, I have not mentioned any of the other credible testimony from high-ranking officers in Roswell who almost universally suggested there was something to this crash and Mogul does not answer the question. The men who would have had to know about the crash in fact said that it happened and suggested it was extraterrestrial with one notable exception.
I have not mentioned the effort by the military and the government to convince us all that it was a weather balloon and then a Mogul balloon by citing the need for secrecy for Mogul. This simply fails because Mogul, the launches in New Mexico, the attempt to create a constant level balloon, and even the name were not classified in 1947 as so many others have claimed. The ultimate purpose, to spy on the Soviets was a secret, but that is a red herring. It means nothing here.
In the end, we do have good reason to reject the Marcel statement that only he was in the real pictures (which, by the way, is contradicted by the other five pictures of the others) and because of that, the argument is not ended. Marcel himself said the pictures to which Lance referred, and that others referred, were of a balloon and not the stuff he found. Most importantly, you don’t have to rely on my honesty, integrity, or interpretation for that because the information comes from others.
So, no, I don’t see this as a rationalization but a rejection of a statement that is challenged by much other evidence. This is what I mean when I say that nothing is easy in the world of the UFO.