Friday, November 27, 2020

Did Nick Pope Investigate UFOs for the UK MoD?


In the UFO community, there are always disagreements and sometimes allegations are slung that have no basis in fact. I have been called a shill for the Air Force, I have been accused of working for Hector Quintanilla and Project Blue Book, and that I am an anti-abduction propagandist who writes fiction. The only truth in all that is that I do write fiction including science fiction but does that really disqualify me from UFO investigation? Wouldn’t my background in the military and my training in various fields suggest I can bring some important insights to UFO investigation?

Nick Pope

I say all this because Dr. David Clarke has again suggested that Nick Pope, sometimes described as Britain’s Fox Mulder (because the news media loves to reduce everything to the lowest common denominator) didn’t investigate anything officially. Clarke told Martin Willis, during Willis’ recent podcast, “There was a UFO desk when he was an incumbent for three years but he was just one of dozens of people who did that task and he didn’t actually investigate anything.”

Clarke went on to say that Nick Pope merely received the reports and that he then filed them. The people responsible for the investigations was the Defence Intelligence Staff, DISS. It was their job to conduct the UFO investigations that were believed to have some sort of military significance.

Clarke said, “I’ve interviewed most of the people who worked on this subject in DISS at that time and they tell me ‘well, Nick Pope didn’t have any involvement in this. We did the investigations, we didn’t share information with them because we didn’t trust them.” He meant that the civilian servants tended to leak information into the public arena which is why they didn’t trust them.

Of course, this really is nothing new. Clarke has raised these allegations in the past and Nick has refuted them in the past. This sort of thing seems to dot the UFO landscape. It doesn’t matter how many times the allegations are challenged; they seem to pop up again and again.

Philip Mantle, the force behind Flying Disk Press, and someone who can’t be seen as a skeptic, wrote to a number of UFO researcher around the world this last week:

Over the past few days social media has been buzzing regarding allegations made by Dr. David Clarke. Dr. Clarke was interviewed by Martin Willis on his podcast on the 18th of November. At around halfway through this one hour interview Martin asked David about Nick Pope. As most of you will know Mr. Pope claims to have run the UK government’s UFO project and had officially investigated UFOs, crop circles and alien abductions as part of his MoD job. Dr. Clarke publicly stated that his is not the case and that Mr. Pope undertook no such work and there never was nor is there a UK government ‘UFO PROJECT’…

Dr. David Clarke is not the only source of information regarding Nick Pope. Personally I have been making my own enquiries which are still on-going. Although my enquiries are not yet complete I have seen and heard enough to convince me that Dr. Clarke is indeed correct. As a result just yesterday [November 25] I removed Nick Pope’s foreword for the revised edition of my book “WITHOUT CONSENT”.

Of course Nick Pope denies these allegations but now the ball is [simply] in his court. Can Nick Pope provide any official documentation that states he ran the UK government’s UFO Project? Well the MoD also claims that he did no such thing. If he can’t then is this the beginning of the end of Nick Pope?

Still, there is some smoke, but is there any fire. I particularly liked the idea that Nick present some sort of documentation. I have had the same sort of requests made of me when people wondered if I had been completely honest about my background. I provided the documentation, though a couple of times it took some convincing for the controlling agencies to release the data. I always attempt to supply the information requested to stop the rumors.

Nick Pope

I have also found that those who can’t provide the evidence tend to come up with the “I’m not going to dignify that request with any sort of response defense.” I’ve always taken that to mean that they can’t provide the evidence so they just dodge the question with this non response… Or they fall back on the old the records have been altered or have been destroyed. Huge red flags when dealing with these sorts of allegations.

I reached out to Nick Pope, who was, of course, aware of this latest brouhaha. Within minutes, I had an answer from Nick. He mentioned that this allegation had been around for years and it had been answered time and again. He pointed out that he had been interviewed on a number of high-level television, radio, and newspaper reporters and had appeared in numerous documentaries. He suggested that those reporters had vetted him and found his claims to be credible…

Well, given the state of journalism today, and knowing that documentary producers often have their own agendas, I wasn’t particularly swayed by that argument. Some might have checked, but I figure most hadn’t. They just believed what they were told because that was easier than doing any real investigation.

That wasn’t all he said. He provided a link to an official document that seemed to underscore what he claimed. You can read that here:

If you scroll down slightly, you’ll find a question that was asked in the British parliament that seemed to suggest that Nick did investigate UFOs. It is not a ringing endorsement, but does suggest that Nick was telling the truth about his involvement, officially, in UFO investigations.

So, to answer Philip Mantle’s question, it seems that Nick did supply an official document that states he ran the project. For those who don’t want to go to all that trouble, here is that brief statement:

From 1991 to 1994 Mr. Pope worked as a civil servant within Secretariat (air staff). He undertook a wide range of secretariat tasks relating to central policy, political and parliamentary aspects of non-operational RAF activity. Part of his duties related to the investigation of unidentified aerial phenomena reported to the Department to see if they had any defence significance.

As I say, not exactly a ringing endorsement, but it the same sort of endorsement we’ve seen for Louis Elizondo and the AATIP project he might have run. We are now in a world of secrets and bureaucracies and double speak so it is hard to define the truth. At the moment we have no real answer, other than Nick did supply official documents but it didn’t go quite as far as I would have liked.

That’s not all. Since the bar was set very low, it wasn’t very difficult to overcome. Other official documents show that Nick did investigate UFOs while serving at the MoD. You can see some of them here:

As a final bit of evidence, Nick was interviewed for a documentary and according to tht documentary, was the spokesman for the MoD UFO program. For those interested, you can watch it here:

I will note, for those who don’t wish to watch the whole thing, that the relevant part begins at the fifteen minute mark.

Nick also wrote, “I don't think there's rivalry between David Clarke and I. I remember Clarke from the British UFO Research Association, so we're not rivals - merely people who come at this subject from different sides of the fence: him as a ufologist, me as someone who's looked at the phenomenon as part of my government job. Obviously, it's frustrating when someone misunderstands or misrepresents my government work, but the lie that I didn't investigate UFOs for the MoD was nailed years ago, and obviously the official website of British parliament is an unimpeachable source. QED.”

This whole thing might just boil down to one man making claims about another and that man providing evidence that those claims are false. Given that this has played out long before, this might just be much ado about nothing.


Unknown said...

As far as Philip Mantle can’t possibly being a skeptic, I found just the opposite when dealing with the evidence I presented to him and Mr Clarke.
As you said omission is an effective tool, that tool has been used against my evidence for almost 2 decades.
He also refused to attack my published work “The Day Manhattan Stood Still “,and chose to just attack me.

RRRGroup said...

Following the brouhaha on Facebook, Kevin, I noted in a reply to Philip that his continuing run at this smear was petty, to say the least about it.

The matter has been resurrected as I type this and it makes Philip look jealous of Nick Pope's popularity and TV "fame" as a UFO personality.

Why David Clarke brought up the matter again is baffling too. It's beneath him.

Nick will be fine but Clarke and Mantle not so much, sadly.


Unknown said...

Your words. "We are now in a world of secrets and bureaucracies and double speak so it is hard to define the truth. At the moment we have no real answer, other than Nick did supply official documents but it didn’t go quite as far as I would have liked." What I do find interesting is that Dr Clarke and Philip have not come by here to debate all this professionally, but rather appear to be using the Facebook platform. I doubt this Nick Pope saga will die down, just my two cents worth.

Alex Cunliffe said...

Agreed! i've been watching with mouth aghast at these silly pointless nonsense for about a week now, and still cannot understand why Philip and Clarke have suddenly decided to try the hatchet-job on Nick Pope? .. have certainly shown their 'envious underbellies' that are willing to try and bring down someone who has risen through the ranks a little too highly for their own liking!

Unknown said...

Philip has known about Nicks role and what he did and did not do for many, many years. Its absolute nonsense, total nonsense 2 suggest Nick didn't look into UFO reports for MOD. He did. That's a fact. And Philip knows this full well. What his actual duties were is another debate

KRandle said...

Unknown -

First, and I fear you take the first hit in this, but I really wish people would provide an identity rather than hide behind an unknown label...

However, I also feat that Nick Pope's claims are, at best an embellishment. While Nick might have investigated UFO sightings at the time, it was not part of his official duties as the documentation suggests. It is quite clear that other agencies and organizations did the actual field work and Nick merely took down the initial information from those who reported sightings or passed they correspondence to the proper agency if it warranted additional work.

Philip Mantle said...

Kevin has now put the record straight in another post. A bit of clarity might be of use here. The topic of Nick Pope came up in conversation last year. Pope was not at the top of my list of priorities and I had always been on a friendly basis with him. In fact I like Nick. He has been a gust in my house and has lectured at a UFO conference I helped organise. When the topic of Nick Pope fell in my lap I had 2 choices. Acknowledge it and walk away or check to see if what Dr. David Clarke and others were saying was accurate. I have know Dr. Clarke for over 30 years so found it highly unlikely that he was telling lies. My enquiries slowly but surely proved to me beyond reasonable doubt that David Clarke was correct. My enquiries were still running as they are now. David Clarke was interviewed recently by Martin Willis and he was asked about Nick Pope. David told him the facts about Pope and the rest is history. AS for me being jealous of Nick Pope that is just plain nonsense. I suffer from a serious heart complaint that prevents me from travelling so being at the beck and call of the media is something that I am not interested in. What I will say is you don't have to believe any of us when it comes to Nick Pope. The MoD documents are there online if you want to double check. Sadly Nick Pope's ship has sunk with all hands lost.

Unknown said...

Apologies Kevin. It wasn't deliberate I'm useless at tech. My name is Mark Townend from Yorkshire in the UK.
I worked at the MOD for many years and can confirm with any shadow of doubt Pope worked at the MOD and ONE of his jobs was to look into UFO reports. That's a fact. What his role actually entaill is another debate

Unknown said...

Mark again. Just to clarify if most certainly was part, but only part, of his official duties.

Unknown said...


Unknown said...

When all is said and done Philip continued to sell book material during this supposed investigation that had been endorsed by Pope. The actual documents etc on Pope have been available to view for a very long time, so no seasoned researcher should be clueless.

Whatever the situation is re Nick Pope, many have benefited from using him to sell their own book material etc etc and have no doubts this will continue for a very long time to come.

Actually looking over Nick Popes personal page he appears to be swimming along very happily.

I will add I am not a Nick Pope fan, I am simply observing what is out there.

Unknown said...

Your absolutely spot on

Philip Mantle said...

Mark, Nick Ope claims thae he investigated UFOs, crop circles and alien abductions for the MoD and that he ran the UK government's UFO project and was the government's UFO expert. None of this is true. He was a junior manager who passed any UFO items of interest to DI55 and if there was any 'investigations' to be done it was DI55 who were responsible. Nick Pope was ten simply instructed to write back to the persons reporting whatever. He investigated zilch. He ran no department, and he was NOT the governments UFO expert. The place where he worked got the nick name 'UFO desk' but it was not an official title. Just drop me an email as I have all the documents you will need to see what i am saying is a fact. One such document even written by Pope himself. I even have his full job description supplied by the MoD. Guess what, no mention it it of investigation alien abductions.

Lemurian said...

Did Kevin Randle ever investigate Roswell? ^^

KRandle said...

The difference here is that I was not claiming to have investigated Roswell in any official capacity. Nick Pope was claiming to have been an important cog in the wheel of MoD investigations. Maybe the better question would have been, "Did Kevin Randle ever investigate Roswell for the Air Force?" That answer is, "No."

Philip Mantle said...

Correct Kevin. Did Nick Pope ever run a non-existent UK MoD UFO Project ? Did Nick Pope even investigate UFOs, crop circle and alien abductions on behalf of the MoD ? was Nick Pope the UK governments UFO expert ? No, no no.