Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Lazy Journalists and UFOs

What in the world has happened to journalism in this country? Over the last weekend (15 – 16 April 2011) there was quite a stir about an FBI document (seen below) that some had found on a web site that posted a bunch of FBI documents. This one concerned a crash of a UFO in New Mexico with the recovery of alien bodies.

A real find...

Except those of us who have been in the UFO field for more than twenty minutes already had copies of the documents. I found them last century and when I say I found them, it was in a package of documents that the FBI had released to Dr. Bruce Maccabee in response to one of his FOIA requests. He, through the Fund for UFO Research, provided many of us with copies of the documents.

The document, with a subject of "FLYING SAUCERS, INFORMATION CONCERNING," (who developed this style for subject lines in government communications anyway) said, "An investigator for the Air Forces [sic] stated that three so-called flying saucers had been recovered in New Mexico. They were described as being circular in shape with raised centers, approximately 50 feet in diameter. Each one was occupied by three bodies of human shape but only 3 feet tall, dressed in metallic cloth of a very fine texture. Each body was bandaged in a manner similar to the blackout suits used by speed flyers and test pilots."

The important clue in this document, which the journalists didn’t find and didn’t understand was, "According to Mr. (Redacted) informant, the saucers were found in New Mexico due to the fact that the Government has a very high-powered radar set-up in that area and it is believed the radar interferes with the controling mechanics of the saucers."

The consensus of UFO researchers is that the information came from Frank Scully who wrote Behind the Flying Saucers, about three UFO crashes, though only one was in New Mexico, and that the saucer had been brought down by radar. The journalists just didn’t know the history of this information and didn’t bother to check.

Scully reported on three crashes. The one in New Mexico and two in Arizona. Originally, he reported on one in northern Africa, but that seemed to disappear from his writings in later versions of these events.

Time magazine contained a story that was clearly the Aztec crash (from Scully) in January 1950. That might have inspired the tale given to the FBI.

To make this worse, if possible. Some of those lazy journalists, who apparently didn’t bother to check with any of us who have been around for a while, added the MJ-12 Operations Manual to the mix. This document surfaced in the 1990s and again the consensus is that it is a fake.

Yes, there are those who believe that manual to be authentic, but their arguments are weak. That is a debate that we’ll hold off until another time.

In the end, we have a sudden spike in interest in documents that have been around the UFO field for decades. The source of the original information is known and the events to which it refers have been identified. Very few believe it refers to real events. It seems the document was forwarded to the FBI as a matter of routine by an agent in Washington who had heard someone talking about this.

The real question is why would the agent have done that? Hoover, as we know, was interested in UFOs, so maybe the agent believed it was something the director would want to know. At any rate, we know the importance of this document... It has none.


Erich Kuersten said...

Kevin, sir, I was shocked too but for a brief few minutes it was great to have my non-UFO nut friends running up to me all over facebook, excitedly and to go with the flow and get a twinge of Xmas squared to the point of terror feeling in my skin, until I recognized the memo from a book I am currently reading.

But I liked it, there's truth inside the lies and lies inside the truth. The radar thing may be off, but clearly some aspects are true, even if it's only embellished heresay. The CIA lives for games like these. Yes it was an embarassing journalist stampede just now, but it was likely engineered to be, and is in the end a very cool acclimation tactic that can work on a large swath of populace who need to start entertaining these realities more quickly for the approaching deadliine. Ultimately the UFO question is swelling bigger all the time, and guys like you are responsible! You're like the guy who started the snow ball rolling down the mountain, you probably never meant for it to get that huge so fast in such a wrong direction, but the important thing, it's there! The truth is out the only way we can handle it, couched in a lie like a dog in a bun.

Ed V. said...

Over here in Europe, this article was circulating on mainstream (newspaper) websites;

Maybe that also explains the spike in interest.

cda said...

The guy who did most to expose this FBI memo was none other than Bill Moore. He was of course your main rival in the 'Roswell' saga, and published his negative findings at the very time he was at his most vehement in support of the Roswell crash.

Perhaps he hoped that by destroying one crash tale he would focus more attention on the other one. For anyone interested, it appeared in Moore's 1985 MUFON paper "Crashed UFOs, Evidence in the Search for Proof". It was revised in 1987.

paul thompson said...

Read the memo carefully. Like so many UFO claim documents, the core information comes from an unidentified third party. So no one can follow up, reinterview the person, determine their credibility and further investigate. I am interested in the UFO phenomenon, but from now on I will only pay attention to FIRST HAND reports from people who are clearly identified.

Paul Thompson

fysisist said...

This is just another example of why the study of this phenomenon hardly ever moves forward - it is stuck in continually re-hashing the past. This is similar to the reaction when Dr. Edgar Mitchell was quoted about a year or 18 months back regarding his thoughts on government ufo information. That was also very old news. But the uninformed talking heads of ufology and the paranormal (i.e. George Noory on C2C)take these things and run with them with no effort to do any background. SNAFU.

Terry's Bazaar said...

J. Edgar Hoover's FBI did collect independent reports on UFOs up until the mid-1950's. Then reports took the form of letters to Project Blue Book asking the USAF to investigate.

Early on and up to 1952 the CIA was often added as an addressee via other channels. Probably courier and dedicated teletype links. Then any mention of the CIA disappeared.