I had the opportunity to talk with David Halperin about his new book, Intimate Alien: The Hidden Story of the UFO. It is a somewhat skeptical treatise on the subject of UFOs, bringing it, you might
say, down to Earth. It is a new way
of looking at UFOs, suggesting the subject is deserving of serious research,
but that the emphasis has been all wrong. You can listen to the show here:
The discussion was somewhat wide ranging. I had been going to ask him about the Socorro UFO landing which he mentions in his book, but he brought it up first. Contrary to what we all might have expected, he has no explanation for what Police Officer Lonnie Zamora witnessed in April 1964. Given that the case doesn’t boil down to just Zamora’s observations but has physical evidence in the form of landing traces, there is no good explanation other than Zamora hoaxed the whole thing. The problem is, of course, that others reported the UFO in the sky prior to Zamora seeing the landing, and there is no evidence that Zamora hoaxed anything. I explored the case in depth in Encounter in the Desert.
We talked, briefly, about UFO abductions and the Barney and Betty Hill case. As most know, I’m a bit skeptical about these alleged longitudinal studies which require a huge logistical supply line that would span interstellar space. On the other hand, if there are alien abductions, then it would seem that the Hill abduction, which was more of a target of opportunity than a planned abduction, is a more likely scenario.
David also mentioned a sighting that I had investigated in which I found a solution but noticed the discrepancy between the statements of the two witnesses. This was the sighting from Mount Vernon, Iowa, that took place decades ago. You can read about it here:
Finally, we got around to Project Mogul, which David brought up in his book. I had thought he was going to defend the idea but actually is bothered by some of the evidence suggesting that Mogul is not the answer. He liked the symmetry of the answer, but feared that it simply didn’t work. For those interested in an analysis of Mogul and some of the counter arguments, you can read about it here:
In the coming weeks, I’ll be talking with Curt Collins about the Cash-Landrum sighting and Jan Harzan, the executive director of MUFON. If you have questions for either guest, post it in the comments section and I’ll get it asked during the interview.