Sunday, June 30, 2013

I've Seen THE{?} LIGHT{s}?, post two.

Back at this subject... chaotically.

Mark Fox's book is a good one. Despite being less than 200pp long, it's filled with a huge variety of topics, which makes commentary and supplementation on something like a blog close to impossible. We're going to have to put up with both incompleteness and a bit of disorder. But the fact that these ARE subjects of interest will help you forgive those flaws I pray.

I think that beginning with an [incomplete] array of included topics might help understanding here. Fox's book covers his findings from the Religious Experience Research Centre {RERC} files in the following areas [among others]:

A). Lights associated with Shamanism, Kundalini, Buddhism, and Christianity;
B). Lights associated with Mysticism;
C). Lights as Angels;
D). Lights as BOLs in bedrooms, which convey some significance;
E). Lights associated with Near-Death Experiences {NDEs};
F). Lights associated with Marian Apparitions;
G). Lights with folkloric linkages;
H). Lights experienced by multiple witnesses;
I). Lights experienced alone;
J). Lights which enfold the witness, or infuse through the witness;
K). Strange illumination of areas large and small;
M). Lights associated with "visions";
N). Strange beams or rays of light;
O). Strange flashes of light.

These categories, sometimes overlapping, are what stood out to me, and they are often chapters or subheadings in the book. Of the 400 cases studied, the category "unusual lightforms experienced solitarily" constitute the greatest number {86}, and with all of our UFO-type history, this comes as no surprise, whether any of this has anything to do with core UFOs or not.

To "progress" on this [I'm using "progress" with a LOT of humility], I'm going to stagger down through the above list and just try to give you some interesting tastes of these things.

Though it is far from my deeper knowledge base in UFOs and folkloric entities and BOLs et al, I'm going to start with a phenomenon that interested Fox greatly --- what we might call an "infusion" of light, possibly even leading to an eruption from the person infused. Fox gives almost a page to this interesting claim by a modern-day famous practitioner of Kundalini Yoga, Gopi Krishna.

It is a tenant of Kundalini practice that meditation brings about transformations of consciousness, and that these transformative moments are accompanied by spectacular experiences of light phenomena [whether this is purely "internal" or can be witnessed by others is a point of scientific interest, but perhaps not the real point of such illumination for the individual]. Gopi Krishna said this about such a personal moment:

"Suddenly, with a roar like that of a waterfall, I felt a stream of liquid light entering my brain through the spinal chord. Entirely unprepared for such a development, I was completely taken by surprise; but regaining self-control instantaneously, I remained sitting in the same posture, keeping my mind on the point of concentration. The illumination grew brighter and brighter, the roaring louder. I experienced a rocking sensation and felt myself slipping outside of my body, entirely enveloped in a halo of light. It is impossible to describe the experience accurately."

GK goes on to speak of his consciousness "spreading wider" while his body receded. As his body became insignificant, his consciousness seemed immersed in a Sea of Light, which took on the nature of a general consciousness into which his own individual consciousness lost its individuality in any ego-centered way, but was rather in some profound communion. For him it was "a state of exaltation and happiness impossible to describe".

I vaguely recall, long ago in the late seventies or early eighties, once listening to Gopi Krishna speak in person. At the time he seemed to me to be an unorthodox Hindu. He seemed almost "experimental" or semi-scientific in nature, as if exploring this business without too much dogma [though there was some of that]. His view, if memory serves, seemed to be: "I believe what I've found". Now, whether that was/is legit I can't say; but it seemed a bit more open-minded than most.

GKs experience seems to me the experience of mystics worldwide when they achieve the relatively selfless, total communion state that IS the "mystic experience". So, I doubt that this requires a very precise "recipe" of contemplation or meditation type --- but I am no mystic so what do I know?

There were quite a few examples where the claimed light phenomena were associated with Christian themes of course. Prominent stories like the "bolt from the blue" which knocked Saul off his anti-Christian "horse" and turned him 180 degrees into an early fanatic for the movement were featured as context materials. Somewhat more modern incidents like Fatima were likewise. Fatima, as most of you know, has been fingered by theorists such as Vallee as a UFO series of events [though I don't see it myself, the Spinning Sun and a few other lightball-like observations seem to give it a justified place among Fox's mysteries --- just not as "core UFO"].

There was a conversion story in the RERC files which Fox thought significant enough to tell. There was a young follower of Hinduism who was [counter to Hindu principles] rather violent towards Christians. He was a stone-thrower and a Bible-burner. But this fellow obviously had deeper issues, as, once he had become disenchanted by his own religion, he began to become suicidal. After a 3am awakening, he challenged the Universe with: "O God, if there is a God, wilt thou show me the right way or I will kill myself". As a Hindu, poor one that he was, he still thought that if he killed himself he'd go back into the Wheel-of-Life and come out for another [better?] try.

So, he was praying for a sign to go on or literally go out and lie on the railroad tracks. An hour and a half into this weird prayer session this happened:

"In the room where I was praying, I saw a great light. I thought that the place was on fire. I looked around, but could find nothing. Then the thought came to me --- 'Jesus Christ is not dead but living, and it must be He Himself'. So I fell at His feet and got this wonderful Peace which I could not get anywhere else. This is the joy I was wishing to get. This was Heaven itself. When I got up, the vision had all disappeared; but although the vision disappeared the Peace and Joy have remained with me ever since."

Though this technique of threatening the Universe with your own suicide seemed to work for this guy, I'd seriously not recommend it. My version of Jesus said: Blessed are they who have NOT seen, yet have believed. Still, Fox's point is that this was a transformative experience involving an anomalous light manifestation.

Fox speaks of various mystics and scholars of the Mystic Experience, and these situations often involve anomalous light. One of the most famous is Hildegard of Bingen. Hildegard says of her experiences:

"This light which I see is not located, but yet is more brilliant than the Sun, nor can I examine its height, length, or breadth, and I name it ' The cloud of the living light'. And, as Sun, Moon, and Stars are reflected in water, so the writings, sayings, virtues, and works of men shine in it before me.
"Sometimes I behold within this light another light which I name The Living Light itself. And when I look upon it, every sadness and pain vanishes from my memory, so that I am again as a simple maid and not an old woman".

Oliver Sachs, the brain health psychologist [and an atheist], has decided that Hildegard's visions are nothing but migraines. Ummmmm..... yes...... every sadness and pain vanishing in the midst of a migraine....... very sufficient hypothesis.

Fox also had many incidents from the RERC which the percipients identified as Angel Encounters. [As this enjoyed a remarkable flourish of interest not long ago, readers seeking more tonnage of case reports can purchase some of the recent books which collect them. Fox seems to like Emma Heathcote-James' Seeing Angels [a book that I do not own, but I believe that I was hunting once], and my own mediocre resources contain a book [Meetings with Angels by HC Moolenburgh], which seems pretty good to me.

Most of these experiences contain, almost by definition, "beings of light" and many do not look like the angels of mediaeval/renaissance paintings, but merely as communicating lightforms. Readers of the blog may also remember the case from the Timmerman files, where a BOL repeatedly forced an Alaskan wilderness policeman into the lefthand lane while he was driving on an emergency late at night. Suddenly a moose appeared in the normal righthand lane just around a curve. The trooper's position in the "wrong" lane was all that saved him. He interpreted this BOL experience as angel protection.

And to illustrate the endless convolution inherent in all these matters, long ago [1975], Billy Graham wrote a book describing UFOs as "Angels" and "God's Secret Agents". No doubt THAT blew several tires on the Rightwing Christian Juggernaut at the time.

One angel story from RERC and then quit for the day:

The incident reporter's great-grandmother was in her last days. Visiting her were her two daughters, the reporter's grandmother and grand-aunt. The two daughters were walking together well away from the house, commiserating with each other about their mom's impending passing, when suddenly appearing before them were two shining winged people escorting another person away. Though the vision was short, it was indelibly burned into both women's memory. On their way returning to the home, they learned that their mother had just passed into the afterlife.

If it was a UFO experience, we would say: High credibility [multiple witnesses], and High strangeness [no need to defend that].

So.... where do YOU think that this is leading? Just Out Proctor??

Till next time folks ... I promise you, I don't know.

Friday, June 28, 2013

I've Seen THE{?} LIGHT{s}?

Preliminary comment: Tough topic today. Very complicated. The core realities here are probably many different unrelated things. What I'm going to do is to walk into this subject, throw some facts and ideas around, which will, hopefully, illustrate the complexity, and then let it go to your hands.

The general subject revolves around the belief that some lightform phenomena have a source which is "alive" in some sense, and that source is at a minimum conscious with a spiritual foundation of some kind, and that interactions with this "whatever" have been transformative for some humans.

It is quite possible to view the first parts of the hypothesis in the paragraph above as truly related to some reality external to ourselves, but that the transformative aspect of interacting with that reality is entirely our own "invention" following an encounter of astonishment. This is part of the complexity.

The inspiration for my blundering into this topic came from someone  pointing towards the book on the left. This book, a very interesting thing en toto, was written by the fellow pictured above. He is Mark Fox, a lecturer in Philosophy and Religious Studies at Joseph Chamberlain College, Birmingham, UK.

Fox was doing a study of an unusual, to say the least, scientist named Alister Hardy {pictured below}.

Hardy was a biologist who had a speciality in zoology and evolutionary theory. Unlike most bio-evolutionists however, Hardy was an actively religious and spiritual man, who believed that there was no reason to suspect that Science and Religion should be in conflict, and plenty of reason (in his mind) that ultimately there would be no conflict at all.
Hardy, not content merely to keep these thoughts in silence, began a quest, external to his laboratory and fieldwork, for possible evidence of the spiritual world manifesting in Nature.

He wrote several books about his ideas of God, Spirit, and Nature, getting the nickname "God's Biologist". But these books [pictured below] were not the source of Mark Fox's interests in the "spiritual encounters" ideas nor my own.

What Hardy did, almost as a hobby [like a much nobler form of my own chosen UFO research "hobby" while I was a prof, and closer to the work "outside" their fields by the great late 19th century scientists who founded the Society for Psychical Research], was to begin collecting grass roots peoples' spiritual encounter stories.

This gathering of "real world narratives" about "other worldly things" evolved into something called the Religious Experience Research Centre {RERC}. RERC was originally located at Manchester College, Oxford, and is currently in the University of Wales at Lampeter. The fact that the Lampeter college is the smallest university in the UK, yet willing to house possibly the most important research concept center, is an irony and a modern social/academic buffoonery that I'll drop with no further comment here. Lampeter/Wales IS, by the way, a very well thought of small university, so the quality of the place is first rate, thankfully.

When Mark Fox learned of the RERC depository of "spiritual encounter narratives", he was excited. There were over 6000 on file. Reading through these, he became impressed with the number of the reports which featured an interaction with light in some way, and a [as William James would say] "variety of religious experiences". Fox, absolutely rightly in my humble opinion, felt that these "data" needed an audience, and went about the work that led to the book originally mentioned.

To compose this thing, Fox culled the RERC files [some of this was forced due to how available some of them were to be read {the minority apparently}]. He selected 700 cases, later trimmed to 400, to illustrate the varying themes that he felt that he was discovering. In the book, many cases are thumbnailed, and Fox does the academic thing of surrounding them with comments derived from opinions as diverse as persons buying into old-style mediumship, to "modern orb" speculators, to Michael Persinger's tectonic-stress-makes-our-brains-go-crazy, to UFO lightfield watchers.

Although persons coming after Alister Hardy tended to use his data in a debunking way [a la Persinger], Hardy went to his own reward believing that the lightforms were manifestations of a spiritual presence occasionally showing itself in our own "physical" spacetime --- as, with regards to some portion of them, so do I. Fox, for his part, is careful not to speak too strongly, but at the very end of the book seems to end in this same place as well.

So..... what have we to deal with?

The early part of this post was a no-brainer... just "history/biography" clearly known. From here on is a Great Swamp of Possibilities, some of which is doubtless Swamp Gas. I, as I sit here staring at that wonderful Olde Print of...???... Will-o-the-Wisp, have no good path on which to proceed. What I'm going to begin with is a list of hypotheses that different theorists have tossed into the Swamp to see if they'll illuminate anything. Further blundering, pixy-led no doubt, will commence from there.

Hypotheses {An Incomplete Set}:
1). Such things are complete baloney {I have urges to shoot such "theorists" but my Catholicism forbids};
2). Such things are the products of natural physical processes, such as those which produce Marsh Gas "candles" and other natural luminous phenomena;
3). Such things are indicators of some still-unknown mechanism whereby the Earth, probably via geological strains, creates surprising lightform phenomena. These lightforms have much less intensity than Ball Lightning, but somehow persist longer. They are a novel natural discovery waiting to go into the science textbooks if we can ever figure them out;
4). Such things are one of the many aspects of extraterrestrial technology related to the UFO core phenomenon. They are therefore intelligently guided and can have purposeful interactions with humans;
Above this line are physical reductionist theories; below it are "paranormal" theories.
5). Such things are manifestations of God's Will in the world, and are therefore to be regarded as moments of revelation, transformation, guardianship. This action may be regarded as directly issuing from God, or via an angelic intermediary;
6). Such things are manifestations of the Spirit World. By this is meant whatever the source of "common" experiences of "hauntings" or apparitions of a non-religious figure type may be. Such olden-style events as the auguries communicating the death of friends or relatives [glowing figures coming out of the forests et al]. Such incidents are usually connected to "meaning" of some kind;
7). Such things are manifestations of the "Faerie" world. Faerie here would include folkloric entities from all cultures differing from the High God/Creator and his loyal angels;
8). Such things are generated by some powers within ourselves, usually latent unless trained by deep "monastic" commitment, but occasionally released by unusual circumstance. This theory does not view this as some physical [normal energy] release in analogy to a Persinger earthlight. The released light has a spiritworld foundation.

As said... incomplete. Add your own.

I'm going to continue my blunder with something that I know a little more about than some of the others: earthlights// lightfields// BOLs. Let's thrash about a little there, and see if it leads anywhere.....

BOLs and Lightfields: These things are, of course, all over the UFO scene and in the casefiles. Some of the reports are from "consistent" locations {like Goldhill, NC above}, and some are seemingly unique encounters {such as many of the "Stalking BOL" incidents, some of which have been discussed several times on this blog}. The big question is, of course: Are all these sorts of reports about the same things?? Some could be natural phenomena of a diffuse plasmaball type, some a type of UFO technology, some denizens of Faerie, some so far Out Proctor we haven't even labeled them yet. And folks.... this is one upon which I haven't a clue.

But I'm going to ramble anyway. My ramble says this: SOME of this pile of mystery IS "intelligent" in some sense of the word. Why??

When we meditate upon the famous lightfield areas [Hessdalen at the top and bottom above, and Marfa in the middle, as examples], it's a pretty comfortable hypothesis that these things are going to ultimately be some sort of physical textbook phenomenon. Look at the bottom picture, for instance: one of the Hessdalen research groups was able to get a fairly spectacular spectrum of the lightform, which looks like a good old physics-in-the-universe type of reading. To my mind, it would be easy to insert some high-technology "underneath" that physics result [i.e. make it a UFO], but going beyond that into the paranormal takes some extra theoretical dancing --- do spirits emit lawfully physical light??? Maybe they do, but there's suddenly a greater discussion to be had.

But maybe we'll be forced to have such a discussion regardless.

An Italian physicist [I have potential to butcher this name], Massimo Teodorani, became interested in the Hessdalen phenomenon, and went there all powered up with hightech equipment to study the lights. Many results were obtained. This positive experience fired Teodorani up for more. He trekked to several other locations around the planet, again harvesting many results. He came to the strong conclusion that these "traditional" lightfield areas DID produce or harbor light phenomena, the debunkers were full of swamp gas, and any serious scientific observers could see it for themselves. BUT..............

He began to get the creepy feeling that these lightforms were not merely some kind of inert albeit dynamic plasmas, but were, in some way inconceivable, intelligent. Well.... WHOOPS.

One can imagine the Olde Folk chuckling in their Mead. Yep, those youngsters, takes them a long time to see these things doesn't it?? And, therefore, is Folk Tradition and its imagery making an inroad into the sacred ground of textbook science?

Mark Fox, RERC, and Alister Hardy would second that.

But whereas Fox and Hardy would like the intelligent lights in the lightfields idea, the RERC files don't seem to include much of this sort of material. A case which vaguely fits our current category is the following:

1968: Irish Hills, MI. Two couples were vacationing in a rented cottage. One couple was sitting in their car, drinking beer [other activities not mentioned], and.....

"Suddenly she got very tense and nervous and said there's something out there. About this time the other couple had come along and asked what was wrong and she told them the same thing. My friend and I said we would go up the road and see if we could see anything. My girlfriend became very upset and insisted that we both stay with them in the car. There were absolutely no noises of any kind from insects or other wildlife whatsoever, which was most unusual as it was a rather warm summer night.

{{ Note, my fellow travelers, the OZ Effect we see so often in these really strange experiences}}.

"As he and I approached the road to the cottage area, I noticed a pulsating light down the road at a distance, that was the shape of a surfboard and appeared to be hovering about a foot off the ground. Knowing that I was not drunk or hallucinating and not wanting to sound crazy, I said nothing but was greatly relieved when he asked me if I saw that light, and being relieved, said, yes.

"As I stated, the light seemed to pulsate, first dimming and then growing brighter. My friend who was a good deal braver than I, started walking towards the light in spite of my suggestion that we return to the girls and the car. As we approached, or rather tried to approach the light, it would recede from us and only return when we would backtrack our footsteps. Several attempts were made to approach and each time the light would recede."

{{ Also note that this is classic light behavior for many lightforms which manifest in regular locations --- i.e. repeaters}}.

This "dance" with the lightform ended when the two guys heard a sound coming towards them through the brush off the road to their left. This sound approached; then it too seemed to back away. The respondent's friend wanted to penetrate into the bush after it, whatever "it" was. Perhaps fortunately the brush became too thick and pretty much impenetrable, so they quit that idea. They returned to the road and turned towards the car.

Suddenly the noise erupted again much closer. They stopped.

"Suddenly from a bush directly in front of us came a single loud expulsion of air as if someone's dying breath. I was petrified and the knife literally fell from my hand and I couldn't move. I don't know how long I stood there but vaguely remember ... my friend pulling my arm and leading me back to the car.

"Upon our return to the car, both girls themselves were in a state of terror, and stated that they felt as if they were being watched and heard heavy breathing. It was at this point that the experience was just too much for me, and I broke down and started crying due to the terror that I had felt".

This incident has features that we have seen before in the great basket of BOL encounters, but is, of course, rather more dramatic [especially on the sounds and terror side] than one gets in those cases. It is also more terror-filled than the typical incidents reported by Fox in his book [which much more often are uplifting and/or consoling in nature]. This one seemed to be included by Fox, 1). because it was there, detailed, and illustrative of variety; and 2). was an impetus for the respondent to open up his mind to both wonderment and to exploration of spiritual practice [he chose Hatha Yoga]. Correctly or not, the respondent connects the shocking encounter as propelling him into a different awareness of and orientation to a larger world.

I'm going to pause here. [Sorry. Typical small gas-tank behavior by me nowadays.] I'll try to pick this trail up when I have something to say.... maybe in a day or two?? ... with luck.

Peace, and may all your BOLs be Christmassy.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Welsh Poltergeist: something to get my mind off "current affairs".

Hello, folks. Much unusual stress in life currently --- situation hopeful, yes, but stress nevertheless. An old friend who, with myself, was a founder of our [failed] ecovillage project, wants to buy an urban structure, a largish three-story "home" {no, it's not the Twilight Zone Castle pictured}, and create a "Green" urban retrofit containing aspects to be proud of. It would be our final gift to this old wonderful world and a fitting end. The stress comes with anything this big to contemplate. Moneywise I'm on my own here, as my buddy doesn't have this sort of wherewithall. So, regardless of situation, imagine contemplating writing a check for significantly greater than $100,000, and that's just the beginning of the retrofit. Plus the property doesn't quite fit the "feel" or the vision yet at all.

Stress, stress, stress ... how God wired me, but onward in Faith down the path.

To try to fool me into relaxation, let's do a post. This is simple enough that maybe I'll actually be able to concentrate my way through it. It's a pretty good story. It's a Poltergeist trilogy in Wales --- with plenty of twist and wonder.

We're right in the middle of the Welsh mountains at the village of Llanbryn-Mair. This involves one of two semi-connected houses owned by a family named Peate. It takes place in the latter half of the 1800s, and was reported by the grandson, Iorwerth Peate, in 1975 { Peate, Iorwerth: "A Strange Tale", FOLKLORE, Volume 86, Summer 1975, pp. 136-8}.

Iorwerth Peate, as it turns out, was quite a famous scholar in Welsh folklore. He was born the grandson and son of two Llanbryn-Mair carpenters, but broke the family tradition to go to "the big city" and to college. He ended up with positions at a Welsh National Museum, as a curator and field worker [on everyday Welsh life traditions of the 19th century --- things which were, of course, fading away], and was an academic writer and a poet to boot. Peate became famous enough as a grand old man of Welsh folklore and custom that his birth home [one of the two homes that will be mentioned in regards to the poltergeist occurrences] has a national historical marker dedicated to him.

One can't help but wonder just a little if growing up in a traditional Welsh home with a rather spectacular poltergeist case might not have affected his life passion a bit. Here is the "case":

Iorwerth's grandfather David was a carpenter. The carpentry shop was in the bottom floor of a two-story home, which had family quarters [the equivalent of a two-person home] above the shop. This was the site of the paranormal events. [mainly]. We will call it the "North House" as it was one of two structures described as "semi-attached" to one another. The "South House" was the main residence of the Peate family. In the period prior to 1896, the North House was used as the sleeping quarters and general living space by Iorwerth's father-to-be and his uncle-to-be while the brothers were younger unmarried men.

So: general family in the South House, and the two grown sons in the upper floor of the North House, with the carpentry shop, where they all worked in the North House first floor.

I couldn't find a picture of Peate's home, but this is an old Welsh two-story from the proper time period, so it gives us something to look at.

The first piece of the poltergeist/ghost trilogy occurred in the 1880s [told to Iorwerth by his father and uncle who experienced it]. It's simple. One evening night fell about 9pm, and the brothers [and everyone else] were asleep shortly thereafter. In the North House, the brothers were awakened at about 3am [no one in the South House woke up]. The cause was a very loud clattering of sawing and hammering coming from the shop below. The brothers were a bit annoyed that their father could have decided to get up in the dark of night to go to the shop and bang around at something, but ultimately the noises stopped and they went back to sleep.

They rose at 7am on the morrow and walked downstairs to the shop. There they saw no recent carpentry, but rather their father talking to a local farmer. The farmer was ordering a coffin. His wife had died the previous night, at about 3am. Hmmmmm..........

OK. Time for episode two. The above picture is from the town of Llanbryn-Mair from the correct time period, again just to give us something to look at.

In 1896, the grandfather, David, passed on, and the whole family [including Iorwerth's parents, now married] had moved into the South House, leaving the North House still with the carpentry shop but otherwise vacant. The Peate family decided to rent it.

In 1897 [I believe] a woman recently widowed, named Mrs. James, came to inquire about renting. Mrs. Peate [Iorweth's mother] was home to meet with her, and instantly liked her and was going to wholeheartedly approve the lease. But then something very strange occurred. As Mrs. James was preparing to leave, she inquired if she would get the place, but Mrs. Peate found herself saying ---  against her own feelings and in conscious surprise at herself as she did it, that EMPHATICALLY NO, Mrs. James was NOT to get the lease. Mrs. James was doubtless stunned, but probably not as much as Iorwerth's mother.

Shortly thereafter, two other widows came and inquired about renting, and nothing odd went on and they settled in happily to the North House. This happiness persisted until one morning one of the ladies came to the South House with a furious complaint. How dare Mr. Peate [now Iorweth's Dad was the carpenter] come over in the middle of the night and bang around, hammering and sawing at 3am in the morning, waking everyone up?!!. The father of course assured her that he'd done no such thing. While this discussion was going on, there came a knock on the South House door. It was a Llanbryn-Mair resident coming to request the making of a coffin for a relative, just deceased the previous night.


So the two renter ladies decided to stay on, and for quite a while no further anomalies occurred.

But one day the older of the two ladies came to the South House, rather sheepishly, to ask Iorwerth's mother for advice on a weird topic. She said that while settling into her bed the previous evening, there appeared in her bedroom an apparition of a man, [named John], whom she knew to be long dead, as he had been her lover. This was well prior to her actual marriage to another man. {This apparition was, as is usual, of the "solid absolutely real-looking kind" and not like the ghostly thing that I've placed above to introduce this part of the tale}.

The apparition spoke to her, saying that he was very sorry that he had jilted her at the last moment in their courtship, that it was all his fault, and that he wished that she would forgive him and shake his hand, which he extended. This absolutely terrified her, and she dove beneath the covers until "he" left.

But what should she do if he comes again? Iorweth's mother asked if she was ready to forgive him. The lady said yes, she'd done so in her own mind many years ago. Then say so to him, and take his hand, said the mother. The apparition came again that evening. The old lady spoke her forgiveness and took his hand [very unusual aspect of this], and this never happened again.

But there was one last thing about that moment of departure: John told her that he had tried to do good things for her, since he had died. He said that he'd helped her [and her friend] acquire the lease for this very house, in fact. The old lady was puzzled by this and told Iorwerth's mother of that remark. What was John's name, she asked? "John James", the deceased husband of the widow James --- the woman that the mother had liked, but found herself refusing her the North House against all her feelings at the time. That hugely abnormal refusal preserved the opportunity for the lady to whom John was asking forgiveness to lease the house instead.

Strange days... most peculiar, Momma.

I have nothing productive further to say. This series of ghostly events took place deep in traditional Wales folklore country. There are remnants of all of the megalithic and druidic and Faerie folklore about the landscape. Not far away is the mountain of Newydd Fynddogg with ancient remains, such as the Lled-Croen-yr-Ych stone circle [and two others] pictured above {some of those "stones" are sheep}. The beliefs doubtless ran still strong in the village of Llanbryn-Mair. Or, as Darth Vader would say: "The Force is strong in this one".

The Haunted Trilogy that we've described had typical poltergeist "rapping" commotions, but also a dramatic "solid" apparition, who claimed a physical impact [the voice saying "no" to the request] somehow upon a real physical human. This makes this constellation of effects pretty unique --- although it seems to be two entirely different paranormal agencies, one OLDE, one recent, coincidental in the same place.

Hope that it amused you.... more guidestones along the path.

Peace and Blessings.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Society for Scientific Exploration Annual Meeting 2013, post six.

We're at the end of the road as far as any chance of good science, or even occasional honesty, is concerned regarding the intelligence community's handling of UFO affairs. The conclusion of the CIA panel was crystal clear: Open discussion of UFOs in ANY honest public way was directly counter to the concerns of national security. On the other hand, deliberate manipulation of UFO "news" so as to deflate the reality of the subject in the public's mind was PRECISELY what was needed. The USAF eased into this as far as the policies WITHIN the military were concerned, as they needed to continue to receive the reports of potentially serious airspace violations. But for persons outside the military the public policy arose quickly, founded upon a simple principle or two:

1). no one should comment publicly upon any UFO case which was not already solved;
2). in case of public insistence, if a case is unsolved, the public relations officer must say something to the effect that "we are looking into it and there is no reason for concern";
3). preferably, any requests for information by the public should be sent to the Pentagon.

To stiffen the policy, it was widely disseminated by a JANAP that any military personnel who talked openly about a UFO case was potentially subject to an extremely big fine, and possible imprisonment.
Incentives for engaging in loose-lipped discussion of UFOs was low.

In many ways the reality of the times was even more brutal than the policy. As the Ruppelt crew left Project Blue Book, and after some brief station-keepers [the non-serious Bob Olsson and the careful mouse, Charles Hardin] in came the most vicious anti-UFO project head ever {Captain George Gregory}. He had the exact intelligence commander needed, as back had come the vitriolic Harold Watson. The atmosphere at Blue Book was as hostile as it could get and still have a project at all.

This era could have spelt doom for UFOlogy entirely if it were not for one dogged man: Don Keyhoe. Keyhoe had his teeth into a bone and would not let go. He was the most tenacious man in UFO history {by far} and the person most feared by the Air Force [by far]. To pursue their strict policy of thwarting any momentum the public might get as to UFO interest, Wright-Pat and the Pentagon set up a five man team dedicated almost entirely to stopping Keyhoe. Not shooting him, of course, but shooting down all his ploys to get the subject before congress. This team consisted of Captain Gregory, scientific aerotechnology consultant A. Francis Arcier, Pentagon public relations spokesperson Major Lawrence Tacker [the most blunt and crude anti-UFO spokesperson ever at the Pentagon], and two other Colonels in liaison positions with congress.

Keyhoe and his NICAP organization would make some publicity noise; this group would plot strategy to foil it. A lollapaloosa case would occur; this group would meet in emergency to plan how to head Keyhoe off before he could get traction with the case in congress. Keyhoe would have a national television appearance scheduled; this group would try to ambush him on the air, or force the television people to severely circumscribe what he would be allowed to say. Astoundingly ALL of the things just mentioned, and more, actually happened. Yes, Virginia, this is the USA, the Land of the Free, but when National Security was felt to be involved, not quite so free as you'd suspect.

Attempting to gag and embarrass Keyhoe was not the only noble occupation of the unholy five. At Project Blue Book, the activity of George Gregory involved not only debunking new cases but going back into the files and re-writing the "solutions" to old ones. "Unidentifieds" were changed to "the star Arcturus" or some other preposterous atrocity. When James McDonald was, much later, allowed to read the microfilms, he was livid with rage. He tended to accuse Allen Hynek, but through most of this period Allen was, naively as always, chasing down Sputnik et al for the Project Moonwatch headquarters, and had little to do with analysis of new cases. Often accused by many people on specific cases later, Allen would look at the record card and say: that was not My analysis.

One particularly concrete example of information management was how the Pentagon handled the famous Battelle study of Blue Book case files. Battelle had been commissioned to make a study of the project files back in Ruppelt's day. By the time of the CIA panel, that study wasn't done. The naive "gee, this must be about finding the truth" guys wanted to postpone the Panel until Battelle could finish. Forget it, and on the Panel went.

When Battelle did finally finish, the Panel was long over and the manipulate-the-public policy was in place. Gregory, Tacker et al wondered how to use this study to forward their ignoble cause. Battelle had done, for reasons entirely mysterious to me, an array of cases labeled unidentified, as drawn in the illustration just above. It would seem that these cases were chosen to show how different every so-called "UFO" was. Whether this was purposeful or not, I do not know, but would like to. Certainly a much fuller array of drawings could have been made showing the eery similarity of most UFOs rather than these differences, and such an array would have been more honest. But that's not the way it happened, and this array was employed by Tacker et al to debunk UFOs as errors of observation by well-meaning but wrong witnesses.

By focussing on these drawings rather than the text, the gang-of-five successfully distracted the readers from what you can see on the graphs above. Battelle had divided all cases by potential quality of observer --- things like experienced pilots>>>everyday citizen. Then they took the cases within each observer category and divided them up by the quality and strangeness of the incident. What Battelle found was that statistically the higher quality observers saw, described, reported a higher percentage of unidentifieds. In plain language, better observers were more likely to have reported UFOs, not the reverse that the Pentagon was implying. Note the astounding one third unknowns by the best observers.

But what did Gregory, Tacker et al care? They were just doing their jobs... albeit gleefully.

This horror show persisted through Gregory's reign but onward through Bob Friend's and into Hector Quintanilla's. Hynek slowly came out of his stupor and figured it out that he was a dupe. But he made one last memorable bonehead by calling the Michigan 1966 sightings Swamp Gas, whereupon all Hell broke loose and he and the USAF got a public shellacking that they deserved.

At that stage of intel community dishonesty though, it was the best thing that could have happened, as it gave the UFO community one final chance to get out the proper word. That Great Hope became the Colorado Project.

I've written a lot about Colorado, even in several places on this blog. I'll not repeat all that here. What SHOULD have been Science's best shot at this subject {finally} became, for sociological and personality issues, a horrifying fiasco. It's an intricate story that you'll have to read elsewhere. On the "did they do science?" question, sufficient hints are in the listing just above to [probably] tell you what you need to know. The effort was pathetic and some of the individual behaviors worse.

Makes me indescribably angry that the so-called scientists didn't put on a better show.

I'm going to end my description of what I would have said at SSE if there had been time at this point in the historical narrative. At an absolute minimum we should accept that there were two major messages that the intelligence community was telling us throughout. One is General Samford's above.

The other is below.

Whether you "like" these two statements or not, they are facts of the historical narrative.

Till next time, folks.

Watch the Skies.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Society for Scientific Exploration 2013 Annual Meeting, post five.

Still cruising across the military intelligence handling of UFOs problem.... here is a thumbnail on where we are in mid-1952:

1). The Air Force, despite public comment to the contrary,was quite concerned about these violations of American airspace about which we apparently can't even detect in a timely manner let alone do anything about;

2). The Pentagon was now full of highly placed officers who were taking this issue very seriously; this included the Assistant Director of Intelligence, who had seen a UFO himself, and the spooky Stefan Possony, the psychological warfare expert with an office desk right in General Samford's own DI spaces;

3). Hypotheses for the nature of these objects in the reports were: a]. they don't exist; everyone is making mistake after mistake; b]. these things are ours, but someone isn't bothering to tell The Pentagon about them, despite being directly asked; c]. these things are Soviet very high-tech devices of a completely unsuspected development, the breakthroughs required being very difficult to conceive; d]. these things are Soviet, but of technical capabilities less than what some of the reports might envision; they are tricky but more conventional than we think, and are likely some vast Soviet psychological warfare scheme; e). these things are exactly what they are reported to be and therefore beyond the current capability of Earth technology.

4). In 1952, despite some Pentagon analysts wanting to believe "a", the two prominent guesses were "d" and "e";

5). Top Pentagon operatives like Colonels Smith and Adams, Major Fournet, and several others [according to Ed Ruppelt] favored "e". General Garland favored "d", while fearing the small chance of "c". Stefan Possony rejected "c" completely, but worried about "d", while thinking "e" a real possibility. Over at Blue Book, the boys were keeping a low profile on hypothesizing. Members of the old dispersed SIGN group still thought "e", while Grudge persons still thought "a". Ruppelt was one of the most intriguing and misunderstood of the experts. He was certain that there were genuine UFO reports [that is genuinely mysterious and unidentifiable things in the sky] but absolutely refused to endorse that those things were "flying disks", whether some of the witnesses described them that way or not. Ed Ruppelt believed that if these things were truly disk-shaped flying objects with no technological accoutrements like wings, tails, rocketry-out-the-back etc, the they were extraterrestrial. But he would not cross that line in any conclusion, no matter how strong the case. His underlings [with one exception, Anderson Flues] were more like a bunch of goof-off college boys than analysts. They took nothing seriously except the next pretty girl they'd run into.

6). The general restrictive atmosphere within the military about spending essentially nothing on anything not related to nuclear warfare remained the firm "economic" background for all decisions.

It was into this exciting mush of mystery and concern that several important, linked things occurred. The consequences of these happenings changed UFO investigation and information manipulation forever, and not for the good. This sequence was, all too briefly, as follows:

A). The UFO phenomenon unleashed a tremendous flap which grew into such numbers that Edward Ruppelt fell a month behind in his logging/filing by mid-summer.

B). That flap culminated in a pair of "show-off" performances over the nation's capital almost as if thumbing its nose at us and the Air Force.

C). This uncontrollable airspace violation of the most sensitive airspace in the country had everybody alarmed right up to President Truman. Truman had been keeping tabs on the phenomenon for months through his main military advisor, General Landry. Landry gave Truman a briefing on UFOs each month. Without us knowing the exact orders, Truman gave Landry an urgent order to get CIA director General Walter Bedell Smith on the problem. What are these things and what can be done about them?

D). The CIA was interested in that very problem for several months, but now it had urgency. Wheels rolled the following day. The focus of the CIA activity was Dr. Marshall Chadwick, chief of the CIA's Office of Scientific Investigations. He, plus General Philip Strong, and rocket expert Frederick Durant became the three musketeers of this investigation, though other elements of the agency were involved.

E). On a separate track, MIT was getting extremely interested. Several heavyweight engineers, including people like Al Hill and George Valley, were trying to initiate a vast program of upgrading the radar detection technology and the national security network for detecting airspace violations. This project was to be part of the program of the Lincoln Labs. The unsolved UFO problem was looked upon as a widely obvious case of the complete failure of our current systems. Lincoln wanted to initiate or at least intimately support a new UFO research program entirely separate from the Air Force.

F). The none-higher-in-prestige Julius Stratton of MIT made direct contact with Chadwell to explore getting this done. Chadwell had begun his probe into UFOs believing that it was all smoke, but the more he learned, the more he became convinced that the phenomenon was not only real but potentially dangerous. Stratton and Chadwell reached common ground, and wheels were set in motion to get a preliminary meeting done which would establish this project under CIA auspices.

G). This plan got out to the rest of the services prior to an uber-important meeting meant to sanction the establishing meeting that Chadwell/Stratton had hoped for. Somewhere very high up in the Pentagon, great powers were exercised to apparently blast CIA director Smith about this seeming takeover of military turf. Heads didn't exactly roll, but plans did. Chadwell was reduced to accepting the idea that instead of a project-establishing meeting, we would have a panel of scientists reviewing the UFO potential threat to national security instead.

H). Thus arose, almost out of nowhere, the infamous Robertson Panel of January 1953.

Much has been written about this panel of scientists who were tasked to [deliberately] do no science. I'll only set the most germane [to my current topic] facts before you here.

1). The panelists were a Who's Who of physicists. None was any expert on the subject to be "studied". Only Robertson and Page had even read anything on the subject, and they only an article from the New Yorker magazine. This alone reveals that this was a farce.

2). But even though it was not known either to the people who would present to the panel, nor most of the panel themselves, the true reason and outcome of these "deliberations" was already set. This was not to be a panel of science about the nature of UFOs, but a fancy shadowshow aimed at stating why the phenomenon was dangerous whatever it was, and where exactly that danger lay, and what should the policy be to address this.

3). People like Ruppelt and Hynek, naive to the bone, thought that they were being invited to present data, scientific evidence. Both left the proceedings trying to rationalize what just happened with their naive suppositions. Ruppelt never figured it out, and it took Hynek 15 years to do so. Their information was just politely waved aside with almost no comment. Dewey Fournet brought his motions study to the panel and got the same treatment.

4). The only things to elicit even a modicum of interest were the two motion picture films [Tremonton, UT and Great Falls, MT] and the panel reacted to them like childish kids going to the Saturday Afternoon Matinee. Displaying them on some ad hoc surface the boys gathered about making instant conclusions and wisecracker remarks. And then dismissed them. The NPIC film analysts [the finest in the nation] were there to present their data. Complete stonewalled ignorance of their ideas issued from the panel. These NPIC analysts had spent hundreds of hours showing to their satisfaction that the imagery was not birds [Tremonton] nor jet exhausts [Great Falls]. Nothing from the panel. Just birds; just exhausts. The top analyst at NPIC, the legendary Art Lundahl, was at NPIC when those films were analyzed, and saw the results. He agreed with Neasham and Woo the technicians. Both films were of unknowns. The panel ho-hummed. Lundahl and many others have boggled at this arrogance.

5). But it wasn't arrogance. This was merely the result of the shadowshow. The real purpose of the panel was the national security threat. Indicating to the servant-level staff [Hynek, Ruppelt, Fournet et al] that there was nothing much to UFOs was part of what had to be done to get to the real result. That result was the need to convince EVERYONE that there wasn't much to UFOs. Why? Because THE MERE IDEA OF UFOS WAS THE DANGER.

UFOs themselves, whatever they might be [even Soviet], seemed incapable of inflicting any real damage on anything, and apparently hadn't even tried to do so. It was the idea of unknown things in the sky which was addling the American public. During the mid-summer flap, the public was alarmed enough that their calls to airbases clogged communication channels up to 45 minute delays --- plenty of time to begin a good real onslaught by the Soviets.

Americans were judged panicky, just like with the 1939 Orson Welles broadcast of War of the Worlds. Sadly the CIA and military were correct in this, as Americans proved many times in later instances to panic and immediately go for their guns. The UFOs could also be used to create phony invasion probes, which when proved wrong would make persons who SHOULD be reporting such things less likely to expose themselves to ridicule while a real flight of the enemy came the next time.

So, in the end, this became a psychological warfare national security issue afterall. As you read the Robertson panel materials you enter a mystery. All these guys are scientists or engineers... none of them seem to have psychological warfare in their portfolios.

.... except one. Sitting to the side as a "guest", his name added in very light ink so that it cannot even be read in most versions of the released panel report, was .... wait for it ....

Stefan Possony.

There is no mention that Possony addressed the panel in the records. The "conclusions" of the panel though are the thoughts of a man just like him.

Thus began the concerted efforts over the next 15 years to remove the feeling of reality surrounding the UFOs. Serious concerns about airspace invasions were gradually successfully replaced by an all pervading unconcern involving stupidity invasions. Now UFOs= popculture stupidity is everywhere; real attempts to extricate anything resembling truth are swamped in swamp gas laughter.

We'll follow this transition into the late 1950s and 1960s next time.


Friday, June 14, 2013

Society for Scientific Exploration, post four.

Onward with the personal talk --- actually, my time limits forced me to only give a piece of this. You are being put through the whole deal... what a privilege, eh? {don't answer that}.

A lot of people know that 1952 was a major flap year and that we had by great good luck one of our favorite guys, Captain Edward Ruppelt, as chief of the newly re-named Project Blue Book. A few others know that there was a new Director of Intelligence, General John Samford, and a new officer assigned to the Pentagon's analysis of UFOs, Major Dewey Fournet. What almost no one knew was that almost the whole command structure which would have direct interface with this problem changed.

Some of the shifts are pictured at the top. Most significant were that Assistant Director of Intelligence Garland had himself seen a UFO, that the laughing jackanapes Colonel Edward Porter had been removed from thwarting sympathetic officers in the levels just below him [Colonels Weldon Smith and William Adams, who were directly over Dewey Fournet]. Watson was out at Wright-Pat, as were the two goons who had been ruining Grudge and the whole crew who had been lying to General Cabell, now also gone.

The real Mr. X in this new story was Stefan Possony. Possony was a violent hawk who had fled Europe in the face of Hitler and viewed the Soviets as at least as bad. He was, allegedly, a political science professor at Georgetown [translation: high level government spook]. Possony had trained himself into being an expert on the organizational elements of Air Power, and had a big reputation. But he also had become a major force in the psychological warfare intelligence community. Possony suspected that UFOs could readily be Soviet mischief, and probably, if so, part of a vast Soviet psychological warfare scheme. And in the new USAF intel regime of John Samford, Possony had a desk RIGHT IN SAMFORD'S OFFICE AREAS. Can you say "Direct access and strong influence?"

Possony was the brains behind something labeled "The Special Studies Group". We know very little about it, but some of what we know you can read on the next illustration below. Possony also had influence out of the office as well, with the officers just below him in the intelligence stack. There seems to have been a group very interested in UFOs who talked a great deal about this problem. Low man on that totem pole was Dewey Fournet, who did a study which is referred to by the single page handout above [more about that later].

These are parts of the six pages that I have which somewhat describe Possony's Special Study Group, as he was trying to get permission to go to Europe to glean intel on what the Russkis might be up to, particularly about UFOs. For anyone who is paranoid, what I did here for the SSE talk handout was to cut off a piece of one page and the top of another, so as to include the most UFO relevant parts of this short document for the handout. If this "secret manipulation" on my part causes deep angst in anyone, I'll be happy to scan in the whole thing [5&1/2 pages I think]. Of course if I'm CIA or NSA you still won't know if I'm holding back on you.... but if you're THAT paranoid, then I'll just have to quote the movie that "YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH!!!"

On a more productive tack, read that note carefully. See, fascinatingly, how it progresses from simple remarks about Soviets or whatever, but gradually expands into open speculations/ plans re: the ET possibilities. Using The Special Study Group as a base, Possony seems to have wanted to push all sorts of studies of UFOs, including even the possibility of communication with them.

As far as Fournet's study is concerned: Dewey has said [to me, actually] that his "Motions" study was his own idea. Others think that it was his superiors, Adams and Smith's idea. Others think that Possony may have been the original hinter. The point is: regardless who was encouraging Dewey Fournet, the Pentagon had, in 1952, a veritable "nest" of high-ranking officers thinking all manner of adventurous thoughts about UFOs and studying them.

Dewey's study by the way was based upon a simple clear thought, and one natural to a pilot: Technology flies in hard geometric precision; nature's denizens, even the best geese, do not. If I can find many cases of hard geometric precision, I prove both technology and intelligence. Then, all I have to show is that some of that flying is beyond our own ken. Dewey felt that his study [all of cases occurring on his own watch at the Pentagon UFO desk from circa June-September 1952], demonstrated all of this.

So, the Pentagon was in Rock & Roll mode. The same could generally be said of Project Blue Book.

There Captain Ruppelt labored to repair the files and to plot the incidents therein. His first discovery was what we've emphasized earlier --- a disturbing concentration of sightings at the New Mexico nuclear lab and testing sites, and at Oak Ridge. In fact, his very first briefing to Generals Samford and Garland found him carrying this information to them on maps. This couldn't have made anyone feel too relaxed about UFOs.

Ruppelt applied for and got a standing science consultant [a near miracle in the current USAF "economic" environment] and we've heard of this guy : Dr. Allen Hynek. He was quite the naive goof to begin with... but he learned. Ruppelt also pursued photos and films, usually unsuccessfully [economics again] and took trips to major witness sites, and had other tests done on the rare opportunities to do so. In short "St. Edward" was trying to do his job, and using science when he could.

In one of the only times that he could apply bench science, he took soil samples from the alleged Desverges landing site and had his labs work on them. What they found haunted Ruppelt till the day he died. Despite the awful character of the primary witness, the straight science on the effects on the plants in the area said: something EXTREMELY strange happened here. The roots of the plants beneath the "landing area" looked like they had been microwaved inches beneath the soil. No one could figure it out. Because Sonny Desverges was such a poor citizen morals-wise, they wrote the case off.... but Ruppelt knew that the trace effects said "unidentified".

So... the Pentagon was moving. Blue Book was moving. Heck, even the Phenomenon decided to Flap just then. Paradise? Nope. Something happened.

 What happened was the CIA Robertson Panel --- but it wasn't the simple story that you've already heard {unless you've already read the book}. I'll go through that strange story next time.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Society For Scientific Exploration 2013 Annual Meeting, post three.

Yes, folks, we return to this riveting publication of my own talk at the SSE. {Yeh, I know... all of our worst nightmares; but it's something to do while I wait for Roger Nelson's and Larry Dossey's DVDs}.

We were here in our story. Project SIGN had been blasted out of existence and "replaced" by a lone lieutenant, Howard Smith, now "chief" of the newly named Project Grudge. No one believed that the change of names was accidental. The noble Howard McCoy had been replaced by the man who most vocally hated UFOs of anyone in the USAF, Colonel Harold Watson. His future comments would occasionally get so out-of-line that he had to be sanctioned, even by a generally UFO-unfriendly Pentagon. With Watson overtop, Lt. Smith had little incentive to spend much time on Grudge, often just mishandling and losing case files ( Ed Ruppelt later had to go to Pentagon and other base records trying to reconstitute the gaping holes in the 1949-1951 era.}

So here in DC was chief of intelligence Charles Cabell, knowing that they hadn't solved their airspace invasion problem, but with a violently hostile Wright-Patterson chief of intelligence, and a complete dud project staffer. The huge ultrabright Scientific Advisory Board available to the Pentagon was not only unused but got the impression that the subject was irrelevant.

This situation was pathetic, but just might have lulled its way into the obscure past if the UFO phenomenon had just faded away.

It did not.

During the "Grudge Era" {1949-1951~}, the UFOs seemed markedly unconcerned about the Pentagon's desire for unconcern. Sitting over on the East Asian side of the Pacific, the Commander of the Far-Eastern Air Force [FEAF] was getting unidentified airspace intrusions in the Japanese and Korean flyzones. As we were just about to go to war in Korea, this was not taken lightly. FEAF sent those reports as required by JANAP to the Pentagon and Wright-Pat... and got nothing back. Finally FEAF began saying things like "WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON?" Here in the North American continent, Continental Air Command [CONAC] was having the same problems. General Cabell was feeling some heat.

Then the US scientists began to chime in. At VERY strategic scientific locations like Los Alamos, Sandia, White Sands, Fort Bliss, and Oak Ridge, there began to be observed an uncomfortable amount of odd things in the sky. At Los Alamos, at least on three occasions, lab scientists noticed increased radiation "excursions" on laboratory equipment, which were coincident with UFO sightings nearby. Were they observing "fall-out" from the flying objects' powerplants? Were they nuclear? This became such an interest that several heavyweight scientists like Harold Agnew [key figure in the Manhatten Project and later to be the actual Director of LANL] banded together to form a UFO observation team and data collector group. They nick-named themselves "The Los Alamos Bird Watchers Association". As time went on, the number of cases was large enough that they developed their own internal UFO report forms to fill out.

Yes, USAF: What the hell is going on?

As Project Grudge continued to snooze [Smith got replaced without angering Watson and moved successfully on, ultimately making General and no waves; his replacements were more in the "get a case, read it, laugh about it a while, and make some explanation up" mode], and Watson continued making irritating public remarks, Cabell at the Pentagon had to slap Watson down a bit to try to at least get Grudge looking at the USAFs own internal cases. This slapping didn't work, and Cabell was lied to about Grudge doing its job.

Out in the real world, more sky invasions. This included the to-this-day mystery of the Green Fireballs. These things were like meteor fireballs but the wrong color [a sort of light lime green] and looking, even to VERY experienced meteor observers, as if they were often "flying horizontally". The really bad part of this was that they were doing whatever they were doing over the Atomic Energy Commission's secret labs at Los Alamos, Sandia, and, shortly, Oak Ridge. The potential significance of that was not lost by the people working there, nor the military in charge.

Right at the top of these power structures the alarms were going off, and the complaints began moving towards the Pentagon. General Cabell was once again reaping a stinking mess from the policy that the Pentagon had sown.

It appears as if it was the Atomic Energy Commission who had enough weight to get the Air Force to move at all. But the Pentagon apparently didn't trust Wright-Patterson to do this job, and with reluctance spent a little money to form Project Twinkle out of their Cambridge [MA] Research Labs.

Twinkle with woefully little real money and support accomplished little. It did track a few objects. Previously a local commander had sanctioned a plane to fly a "dustcatcher" along the route of a green fireball, and the analysis showed unusual copper content in that dust. These were the sorts of things [plus radiation detector arrays and regular watch groups with the sorts of scopes used to track missile launches, etc] that the local commanders and scientists wanted done. Almost none of it was.

Pathetic it seems and pathetic it was. But the overwhelming fear of the Soviet nuclear threat and the need to pursue what was not yet realized as the policy of "mutually-assured-destruction {MAD}" tossed all else aside. Nevertheless, a near-impossible tidal shift in Pentagon atmosphere [as far as UFOs were concerned] was about to take place in late 1951. It would usher in the last "golden" moments for investigating the problem by our military.

Next time....


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