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On the 9th of July at 1:00 p. m. reporters observed a balloon release with radar targets at Alamogordo. This story was carried in some newspapers the next day. It was not widely reported. Several balloon releases by Army, Navy and weather bureau personnel were made for newsmen during the next few days. A story was headlined on "Army, Navy Work to Still Saucer Rumors." (A variation of that story from a Nevada newspaper is reproduced below.) It basically reports that UFO stories are falling apart; easily explained as common natural or man-made objects. Many editors, it indicates, have tired of the nonsense associated with the flying saucers and state so. After this date, few sightings are carried on the news wires. It is still possible to find local news stories.
Las Vegas Review-Journal - July 9, 1947
FLYING DISC TALES DECLINE
AS ARMY, NAVY CRACK DOWN
By United Press
(UP) -- Reports of flying saucers whizzing through the sky fell off sharply today as the army and navy began a concentrated campaign to stop the rumors.
One by one, persons who thought they had their hands on the $3,000 offered for a genuine flying saucer found their hands full of nothing.
Headquarters of the 8th army at Fort Worth, Texas, announced that the wreckage of a tin-foil covered object found on a New Mexico ranch was nothing more than the remnants of a weather balloon. AAF headquarters in Washington reportedly delivered a "blistering" rebuke to officers at the Roswell, New Mexico, base for suggesting that it was a "flying disc."
July 10, 1947, Alamogordo News, Front Page
Some of the balloons, of the type shown to the Alamogordo News representatives Wednesday, the commanding officer said, were used to carry at times devices that it was necessary for the group to recover and these were tracked to their destination by B-17's and other aircraft if they soared out of range of the radar equipment.
MAJOR GENERAL HAROLD E. WATSON: INTELLIGENCE PIONEER, AIR FORCE WARRIOR
During the late 1940s, the Army began testing captured, German V-2 missiles at White Sands, New Mexico. The question was asked of General Watson, "What's the Army doing at White Sands?" Since the question came from a high level, he decided to find out. To gather the information, General Watson decided to see what information could be obtained using electronic surveillance. After getting his plan approved by J. Edgar Hoover, the Federal Bureau of Investigation director, and General Nathan Twining, the Air Force Chief of Staff, General Watson put a crew in a hotel in Alamogordo, New Mexico, near the White Sands missile range to spy on the Army. This was the start of electronics intelligence (ELINT) as a concerted effort in the Air Force.
Air Force News Special Report
Roswell Report: Case Closed
The 1994 Air Force report concluded that the predecessor to the U.S. Air Force, the U.S. Army Air Forces, recovered debris from an Army Air Forces balloon-borne research project code named MOGUL. Records located describing research carried out under the MOGUL project, most of which were never classified (and publicly available) were collected, provided to GAO, and published in one volume for ease of access for the general public.
The conclusions are:
Air Force activities which occurred over a period of many years have been consolidated and are now represented to have occurred in two or three days in July 1947.
"Aliens" observed in the New Mexico desert were actually anthropomorphic test dummies that were carried aloft by U.S. Air Force high altitude balloons for scientific research.
The "unusual" military activities in the New Mexico desert were high altitude research balloon launch and recovery operations. Reports of military units that always seemed to arrive shortly after the crash of a flying saucer to retrieve the saucer and "crew," were actually accurate descriptions of Air Force personnel engaged in anthropomorphic dummy recovery operations.
Claims of "alien bodies" at the Roswell Army Air Field hospital were most likely a combination of two separate incidents:
) a 1956 KC-97 aircraft accident in which 11 Air Force members lost their lives; and,
) a 1959 manned balloon mishap in which two Air Force pilots were injured
How the Military Debunked the Saucers After Roswell
Although many are familiar with the photos of the balloon and radar target in Gen. Ramey's office at Fort Worth, Texas, few are aware of other military-related demonstrations that followed immediately afterwards. Weather balloons and assorted paraphernalia, particularly radar targets, were trotted out as the explanation for the nationwide flying saucer reports. In retrospect, these demonstrations were clearly part of the "concentrated campaign to stop the rumors."
The follow-up debunking campaign using weather balloons was suggested in the last line of the Ramey message. The end of the Ramey message reads very close to the following:
....AT ROSWELL. ASSURE
THAT CIC/TEAM SAID THIS MISSTATE MEANING OF STORY AND THINK
LATE TODAY NEXT SENT OUT PR OF WEATHER BALLOONS WOULD FARE
BETTER IF THEY ADD LAND DEMORAWIN CREWS.
>There are other examples of CI people who had regular "day
>jobs", but were also serving in a CI capacity. Take the case of
>Larry Dyvad, associated with Project Mogul, supposedly as a
>chase pilot for the balloon flights. That was his "day job." But
>the day after the Roswell base press release, he was part of a
>team at Alamogordo debunking Roswell and flying saucers using
>weather balloons and radar targets (one of a number of such
>demonstrations incidentally). See:
>This even came up in the Air Force Roswell report in the
>interviews with Charles Moore and Col. Albert Trakowski by Lt.
>James McAndrew. Given Dyvad's involvement with the Alamogordo
>demonstration, they speculated that he was secretly with CI.
They key here is that they speculate... there is nothing to
confirm that. Has anyone attempted to check his record to find
out if he had the real training in CI?
>Additional evidence of this comes from a 1951 document.
>Trakowski's replacement as Mogul Project Officer was Col. Edward
>Doty, who we know today from multiple documents, was really an
>AFOSI officer (i.e., Air Force counterintelligence) and also in
>charge of UFO investigations at Holloman AFB, Alamogordo. Both
>Doty and Dyvad took a UFO report from a radar station near
>Corona, N.M. in 1951. A discussion of this and the document can
>be viewed at:
>It is also noteworthy that the Air Force included a 1959 letter
>from Doty to the Holloman base historian (Appendix 4 to McAndrew
>section), detailing his involvement with the balloon projects at
>Alamogordo starting in January 1948, but telling the historian
>nothing at all about being with AFOSI or being the base UFO
Concerning the initial announcement, "RAAF Captures Flying Disc," research failed to locate any documented evidence as to why that statement was made. However, on July 10, 1947, following the Ramey press conference, the Alamogordo News published an article with photographs demonstrating multiple balloons and targets at the same location as the NYU group operated from at Alamogordo AAF. Professor Moore expressed surprise at seeing this since his, was the only balloon test group in the area. He stated, "It appears that there was some type of umbrella cover story to protect our work with Mogul "
The interview with Colonel Trakowski (Atch 23-24) also proved valuable information. Trakowski provided specific details on Project Mogul and described how the security for the program was set up, as he was formerly the TOP SECRET Control Officer for the program. He further related that many of the original radar targets that were produced around the end of World War II were fabricated by toy or novelty companies using a purplish-pink tape with flower and heart symbols on it. Trakowski also recounted a conversation that he had with his friend, and superior military officer in his chain of command, Colonel Marcellus Duffy, in July, 1947. Duffy, formerly had Trakowski's position on Mogul, but had subsequently been transferred to Wright Field. He stated: ."..Colonel Duffy called me on the telephone from Wright Field and gave me a story about a fellow that had come in from New Mexico, woke him up in the middle of the night or some such thing with a handful of debris, and wanted him, Colonel Duffy, to identify it. ... He just said 'it sure looks like some of the stuff you've been launching at Alamogordo and he described it, and I said 'yes, I think it is.' Certainly Colonel Duffy knew enough about radar targets, radiosondes, balloon-borne weather devices. He was intimately familiar with all that apparatus."