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Interview with George Knapp - Part II

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posted on Jul, 22 2006 @ 09:44 AM
*Now let's move onto the "various and sundry",*

SPRINGER: There has been a lot of "hoopla" and positioning on the internet regarding you and a fellow named Danny Burisch. From what we've read, can you tell our readers what, exactly, you discovered about his background and credentials? As a follow up, can you tell us what, in your opinion, Burisch is supposed to be doing and more importantly WHY?

GEORGE KNAPP: I am somewhat reluctant to even acknowledge this question because any attention given to the Burisch fairy tale---especially negative attention---tends to energize and mobilize the Burisch cabal and his small cadre of handlers and p.r. advisors. Question them and they circle the wagons, mobilize the faithful, and go on the attack. Outside criticism is one of the foundations of their religion and it serves them well as as a control mechanism, a way to keep the troops in line. They live for it. It validates their status as reluctant martyrs who are risking their lives for the good of mankind, in spite of the slings and arrows hurled by the ignorant masses. The fact that ATS even posed this question will be music to their ears, a confirmation of their importance to the world. The fact that I am answering the question will be an unexpected bonus and will give them something to do for the next few days. Rather than have to make up some new stuff to keep their soap opera alive, they can take a break from their creative writing and focus instead on trashing me, an endeavor that is familiar territory for them.

In previous years, their attacks on me focused on my career, which they have described as shaky and doomed because I wasn't smart enough to realize that they represent the biggest news story of all time. Contrary to their predictions, my career has been pretty successful, so they have taken aim at my personal life. Someone sent me one of their latest snipes---it was a wisecrack about my weight and ow I need to stay away from the taco bar. Ouch, man that stings. Tomorrow, they might reveal that I sometimes chew my fingernails and wear mismatched socks. After that, maybe they will say something bad about my mom. Take my word for it, they will be absolutely thrilled about this discussion and will be just as giddy when they dump a big load on my head, a development that is as certain as the rotation of our planet. Ah well, maybe this makes me a martyr too. Cool. Now I have something in common with the believers.

In a nutshell, my personal opinion about the Dan Burisch story is that it is a total crock. Total. Complete. Not a close call. It started with lies and exaggerations, evolved into a rich tapestry of delusions and fantasy, and is now a full-fledged religion with its own scripture and doctrines, angels and demons, and its own Christ on a cross. I try to keep an open mind about most UFO tales---controversial mysteries like Roswell, the MJ 12 papers, crop circles--- but this one falls into the same circular file that holds the William Cooper , Dulce alien landings, and Alien Autopsy stories. It is nonsense, except to the dwindling few who consider it their gospel, their calling, the very center of their existence. I have always been reluctant to pass judgement on someone else's religious beliefs, but I get uncomfortable when true believers try to impose their missionary zeal on everyone else. Suicide bombers are not going to be rewarded with 29 virgins in heaven. Sorry, but that is simply too much to swallow. So is the Burisch fable.

I can't list every issue that has been investigated regarding Crain/Burisch/Jesus. It would be like hiring a high-priced law firm to write a legal brief to prove that the Easter Bunny does not exist. (Although, if push came to shove, the Easter Bunny might have a stronger case than Burisch)

My objections boil down to two basic points.

1) Everything that is known and verifiable about Dan Crain-Burisch directly contradicts his UFO claims. Conversely, there is no verifiable information to prove ANY of his more elaborate stories. I'm sure you all understand the point. Every one of us leaves a paper trail as we go through life. Diplomas. Employment records. Addresses. Legal documents. Things that can be checked and verified. Dan Burisch is no different. He too has generated a paper trail during his life, a trail that is pretty easy to follow. The problem for him is that this trail---the one that can be documented and verified by anyone who cares to take the time-- paints a much different picture of his life than the version he is now claiming. At the same time, there is NO paper trail, no verifiable information, no independently-corroborated documentation for ANY part of his alleged exploits as the savior of mankind. No pay stub, no bank record, no tax statement, no passport, no military file, nothing like the blizzard of routine, inevitable, inescapable paper that every single one of us generates without even thinking about it. There is plenty of verifiable information to show that he worked as a parole officer and then as a security guard at several casinos, but there is ZERO verification for his secret life as a secret agent and planetary savior. Now, we can either believe that Dan's entire life has been controlled and manipulated by all-powerful forces to a degree that is unknown in human history, or we can believe the more obvious alternative. What does your gut tell you? Before you answer that, consider my second objection.....

2) There has been a distinct and ongoing effort by the Burisch camp to manufacture credentials to support his story. This is the part that really bothers me. The lack of any verifiable records is troubling, but I might still have Burisch in the question mark category if not for the transparent and incompetent attempts to create a background that supports his story. It's ridiculous.

Before I ever met or heard of him, I started getting letters from people, most of them anonymous, informing me that he is a shadowy guy who works at Area 51. One letter was supposedly from a neighbor. Three or four came from a supposed co-worker at 51. Two came from an ex girlfriend who sent me pictures of Dan visiting the BioSphere in Arizona. All of the letters arrived during a time frame of a few weeks. Coincidentally--or not--I ended up appearing at a public presentation, and lo and behold, Dan was on the panel. It occurred to me that someone was trying to get me interested in him and that all of the letters were coming from the same source.

In the early going, I obtained a copy of his resume, which claimed he earned his PhD at the prestigious John Quincy Adams Institute. It didn't take much digging to figure out that no such institute exists. When confronted with that lie, Dan explained that he made it up in order to throw me off the track, which struck me as pretty weak. He subsequently claimed that his doctorate was actually from SUNY Stonybrook and he earned it in microbiology and genetics. I called the school. They had no record of him. Dan says this is because the secret government wiped out his records. His mom told me that Dan had moved away from home for a period to earn his doctorate and that she had recieved a copy of the diploma. Okay, wiping out some records might be possible. (I had heard it before with Lazar.) Then I obtained his employment records. He worked for Nevada's Parole and Probation Dept. as a parole officer. The problem was, his employment records showed that he was working a full time job in Las Vegas during the same time that he was supposdly earning a PhD in New York, plus, according to Dan, this is also when he was working full time at S-4 as the principal scientist involved with J-Rod, the alien.
A parole officer in Las Vegas, a scientist at Area 51, and a PhD candidate in New York, all at the same time? It struck me as just a bit implausible. Not for Dan. See, his version is the parole job was just a cover, not a real job (a claim that was directly contradicted by his supervisors). He was able to earn the doctorate while living in LV because the Navy flew him back and forth to New York on the weekends. He earned a PhD on the weekends, even though Stonybrook confirmed to me that grad level science courses have never been offered on the weekends. (It also contradicts his mom's story that he moved away to NY earn the degree.) Plus, he still had time to work full-time at S-4 during the same period. I'd say he is Employee of the Month material.

This is a pretty obvious lie on several levels, but the Burisch camp is not deterred at all because they always have the irrefutable answer---the secret government did it. They arranged the cover job, they flew him to New York every weekend, they paid him for his work at 51 but not with an actual, traceable paycheck. Having a secret government as an excuse for ones lies is sort of like having your own genie. Genies make all things possible, no matter how impossible they may seem to mere mortals.

So where is his diploma? Didn't he keep a copy of his PhD? Turns out, it was stolen by his wife and she won't give it back. His wife met Dan when she was sent to the Parole office because of a conviction on drug charges. (This must have happened on the one day that Dan was actually in the office, performing his 'cover job".) Years later, we were informed that the wife wasn't really a drug offender. That was just a ruse to get her close to Dan. See, she is also a secret agent employed by MJ 12. That's because her dad was an MJ 12 insider. She stole the diploma to punish Dan for speaking in public about his classified job at 51. Are you following this?

How do we know that Dan really did earn a PhD? Because it says so in the UNLV Alumni directory. This is a telling example of the attempts to manufacture his credentials.
For quite some time, the official Burisch website has featured an excerpt from the UNLV Alumni guide as proof that he earned a doctorate in New York. Sure enough, the alumni guide lists a PhD from Stonybrook in Burisch's bio. The Burisch website touts the alumni guide as proof that Dan earned a doctorate. The problem is obvious-- the entries in the alumni guide are submitted by the entrants themselves. No one in the alumni office conducts a background check to verify the claims or credentials that are submitted. (I have a letter from the university which states this fact.) I'm sure Dan isn't the first person to exaggerate his credentials and accomplishments to former classmates, but he's certainly one of the first to try and use his own unsubstantiated claims to convince a larger audience of something that he simply cannot prove. Dan earned a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from UNLV. It is the only one of his many claimed degrees that is verifiable. (Makes you wonder why the secret government didn't obliterate this one too.) Like all college alumni organizations, UNLV's sends out notices to alumni and asks them to update their info for inclusion in the next editon of the alumni guide. Dan--or someone close to him--sent in an unverifiable bio. The alumni guide didn't check any of the unverifiable facts, but now Dan's supporters consider this as proof of his bogus doctorate. Man, that's weak.

Also on his website is a photo of his class ring, which is supposedly proof that he earned a biology degree at UNLV, a degree that was never conferred according to the university. A class ring? Boy, those are hard to come by. I'm sure all ring manufacturers conduct thorough background checks of the people who send them money. ("Listen, buddy, our team of detectives were unable to verify that you ever earned that biology degree, so you're just gonna have to take back the money you sent us.") I mean, why post a photo of a class ring and call it proof?

Ditto for the boastful claims that Dan is listed in various Who's Who publications. Do you think that the Who's Who empire sends out staffers to scour the country, looking for persons who measure up to their exacting standards, or do they print the name of anyone who sends them a check and a resume'? Oh yes, Burisch's recent CV also notes that he was nominated for a Nobel Prize. Wow. Impressive. Surely that must mean he is a legitimate scientist. Nominated by whom? By the wife? By J-Rod the alien? By Dan Jr., if you know what I mean? Maybe I missed it, but I'm pretty sure the folks in Sweden have somehow resisted the urge to book a room for Burisch at the Stockholm Hilton. I mean, come on, who puts something like this on a resume? Tomorrow, I'm going to nominate my cat for the Nobel Prize in Physics because the number of hairballs she produces defies the laws of physics.

The Burisch group created another fanciful scenario with the story that Dan had to travel to London for a hush-hush meeting with other secret agents. As proof, they displayed a photo of the mansion where the meeting supposedly took place. Okay, I asked, if he went to London, he must have a passport. Show us a picture of his passport on the website and we will concede the point. A passport is something that can be verified. Oh, but in Burisch World, nothing is quite so simple. He has a passport, I was told, but he isn't allowed to keep it. An officer attached to the secret government took it away from Dan as soon as he got through British Customs, and then he did the same thing when Dan returned to the U.S. The secret government retains possession of Dan's passport, which means the only proof of his visit to London is a photo that shows a stately old building. Wouldn't you know it, Dan is not in the shot, which is a big surprise. I asked if he had any hotel receipts from the trip, any credit card receipts, an airline stub, any receipt that showed he called home, any postcard he mailed to the little woman? Nope, sorry. Those are scraps of paper that any other human being would have, but not Dan. All he has is a photo of an old building. proof positive.

One other telling example of the attempts to create his credentials. Burisch has always been cagey about his alleged military status. In the early years, he said that he never served in the military (which would explain why there are no records of such service--I checked.) He subsequently claimed that he was awarded an honorary rank of captain in the US Navy, sort of a formality for all of his hard work as a casino security guard. Still later, the story changed and he was supposedly a captain in the Marine Corps. Now, if you have ever seen Dan in person---and I am not putting him down---he is not what you would consider a prototypical Marine. Admittedly, I don't qualify either. Anyone who has served in the USMC or knows a Marine or who has even seen the recruiting commercials can tell you that Dan Burisch is not a Marine. Not now, not ever. This particular lie didn't just allege that Dan was a Marine, but that he had advanced to become a Captain in the Marines. Man, that's ballsy. An actual Marine would kick somebody's ass for a lot less. What's the proof that was proudly displayed on the Burisch website for this claim? There's a photo of Dan, with a caption that reads Capt. Dan Crain (Burisch) USMC. The photo was featured on the website of the US Navy Memorial Foundation, alongside photos of hundreds of other Marine and Navy veterans. Also posted were some envelopes sent from the Foundation to Capt. Burisch with typewritten notations indicating that the contents of the letter were classified or restricted...presumably for security reasons. Oooh. Goosebumps. I contacted the Memorial Foundation. I wrote a letter and followed up with a phone call. This foundation is a fraternal organization. It has no connection, official or unofficial, to the Navy or Marines. Basically, anyone who sends them a photo and $25 can be listed in the online directory. They have a staff of 3 or 4 people. They don't conduct background checks on their applicants. They don't confirm anyone's service record. They don't send out letters containing classified materials. They have a website with photos and sometimes they have get-togethers where people get sloshed. The administrator told me it never occured to them that someone might use a listing on their site as proof of military service because they don't run any checks and don't have the resources to do so even if they wanted to, which they don't. It's just for fun. That's it. The guy told me he was going to remove Dan's name and photo from the site and hoped that I wasn't going to make a big stink about it, which I didn't. When I brought this up during an exchange with the Burish faithful, they told me that they had notihng to do with the listing and said that Dan's mom was the person who sent in the photo and $25, without their knowledge or approval, a mother's gift to her estranged son.

Okay, if they had nothing to do with it, and they knew it was bogus, why did they post it on their website and tout it as proof that Dan is a captain in the USMC? And if his rank in--take your pick--the Navy or the Marines is only an informal classification, why did they also post photos of Cap'n Dan, dressed in an indistinct military uniform and cap, as he was driven to a location outside of Las Vegas by another person in uniform, a person who was photographed opening Dan's door and then saluting him? (The photos were taken by some friends of the family. Wonder how they knew where to hide to get the best shots?) Oh, but here's the kicker. The second person in uniform, the one who drove the car, opened Dan's door, and then saluted him for the camera---it's Dan's wife. I guess she's in the military too. My initial reaction was---if she's driving him around and saluting him, it surely means that HE must be the ranking officer among the two of them. If that's the case, why doesn't he order his wife to give him back his missing diploma?

It goes on and on. I'm sorry to even waste anyone's time with this. It will make absolutely no difference to the Burisch clan, other than to inspire a new salvo of vitriol in my direction. They will go ape# over this--but not in a bad way from their perspective. This discussion is manna from heaven, Christmas in July. Someone is talking about them. Whoopie. I have no personal animosity toward Dan. He's taken some shots at me, but I've taken some shots at him so I can't complain. I remember him as a bright and amiable guy, but with a couple of pieces missing. He lived with his mom and dad into his 30's and didn't leave the nest until he married his parolee. I have a hard time recognizing the previous Dan in the stuff that he supposedly writes these days. I'm pretty sure about who is calling the shots, who controls his life, and who has final approval of the daily scripts. In case you are wondering, it's not the secret government, but he might be better off if that part of the fantasy were true.

What are they up to now?

I have no idea and don't really care. They've been saying for the past few years that they are preparing an earth-shattering, all-encompassing revelation. Can't wait to hear it. They are also angling for media attention, video deals, maybe a movie. Good for them. They've certainly put enough time into it. Might as well get something for their trouble. They've been engaged in this elaborate role-playing thing for a long time now, pretending to be secret agents, trying to save the world. I'm sure it's been fun, but not as much fun as cold hard cash.


SPRINGER Another "story" appeared on the internet late last year called "serpo", it caused quite a stir intially and generated a huge, 5000 reply thread on . This story was circulated by a Victor Martinez via his email "list" which your email address is on. Our Members declared this story a fantasy at best, and a deliberate hoax at worst, due to the incredible inconsistencies found within it and the alleged "players" behind the scenes involved with the information. The alleged "players" include, Victor Martinez, Richard C. Doty, Kit Green,MD, Bob Collins, and Hal Puthoff. What is your sense of this story and the people behind it? As a follow up, are you still receiving the emails from Martinez? Is this story of any interest to you at all?

GEORGE KNAPP: SERPO--what do I think of the story and the people behind it?
I love the Serpo story. It's a fabulous tale. It would be even better if it were true. Like a lot of other people, I was on an email list when the first details started trickling in. It seemed to me like a lot of other intriguing stories that emerge now and then, a fun premise but one that was sorely lacking in verifiable fact. The source was Anonymous, so I wondered how much of a mental investment it was worth? For me, it got interesting when someone invoked the final scenes from Close Encounters and suggested that Spielberg had based that part of the movie on real events that had been told to him by someone in the know. Now we're talking. That's a much more interesting tale.

I got so many emails about it that I couldn't read them all. Then, in a matter of just a few days, the story took on a life of its own. Everyone seemed to be yammering about it, and I was too far behind to understand all otf the nuances. Suddenly there was a SERPO website. Anonymous was cranking out a lot of material and all kinds of folks were engaged in heated exchanges. I made a conscious decision to adopt the "willing suspension of disbelief" approach and watch where it went.

Two things happened during the height of the hoopla. The first was when someone sent out an opinion survey that sought to find out whether anyone was buying it. That pretty much settled the question for me. It meant one of two things---either someone was conducting a psychological or sociological experiment and wasn't all that worried about tipping their hand, or someone else was peddling a fairy tale for fun or profit or practice or all three. I mean, since when do opinion polls have any value in a debate about the legitimacy of something like this? It struck me as waaay too transparent. I filled out the survey and expressed the opinion that I was 95% sure the story was untrue, unverifiable, and fictional. (I don't remember what the results of the survey showed but am pretty sure I was in the minority at that point.)

The second thing that happened during the SERPO crescendo is that I received an email from a knowledgable person I have come to trust. The person commented to me---slyly---that the writing style in the SERPO releases should probably seem familiar to me. The unspoken implication was that the person who wrote to me had a pretty good idea who was behind the SERPO releases, although, to this day, I don't have the slightest idea who the author is. I didn't recognize the writing style at all. Still, that was another nail in the coffin.

I have since read on the ATS site about something that happened at the Laughlin conference. The English researcher who was out in front of the SERPO tale was allegedly caught in a bit of hoaxing. he supposedly dropped off an envelope at the front desk, addressed it to himself, then picked it up later and told people it had been delivered by Anonymous. I have no idea if this is true. I don't know the guy, haven't investigated this on my own, but have seen no refutation to the ATS story. If the story is accurate, it would be very damaging, but since the story is already dead and buried--at least in my mind--this is like pumping a few a few shotgun rounds into the gravesite of Phil Klass. Klass has left the building. So has SERPO.

You asked about the people who are supposedly behind it. I don't know who is behind it.
I have never met Victor Martinez although we communicated by email for a period of time. Obviously, he was instrumental in spreading the word about SERPO, but my sense is that he viewed it as a potential scoop, a story that he helped to break and which caused a sensation for a time. I can relate to that. Do I think he was involved in writing it? No, not at all. I can't prove it, but you asked for my opinion. I've had my differences with him but have seen no indication that he would fabricate something like this.

Doty and Collins? Sorry, as I told you, I haven't followed the story closely enough to render a solid opinion about their level of involvement. I remember seeing emails from Collins in which he referenced comments from Doty. Both of them indicated that they had seen documents or talked with insiders in years past and that a story similar to SERPO had been floating around for years. I simply don't know if they took a more active role in promoting the story because I stopped reading all of that stuff. I'm well aware of their backgrounds and the suspicion that follows them in many UFO circles. Some of it is deserved, but I also think some of it is greatly exaggerated. Could one or both of them have concocted the SERPO stuff? Yeah, no question. These guys have been around the block. Did they? That's another matter. I 've seen plenty of inferences and allegations but no solid proof, so if someone is going to try and pin it on them, they need to make the case. Again, SERPO is not something that interests me anymore so it's entirely possible I've missed some of the tell-tale minutia. Sorry.

As for the other two names contained in this question, I have strong opinions. Hal Puthoff and Kit Green did not create SERPO and I don't even know why their names are being mentioned in this context. I certainly don't remember ever seeing any SERPO comments from Hal in any forum. It would surprise me a lot to learn that he's entered the discussion in any significant way. The only time I see messages from Hal in any of these forums is when his reputation or his work are slammed by someone who doesn't know what they are talking about. Even then, he does so reluctantly. The same goes for Kit Green. Why do their names pop up in such discussions? Because other people invoke those names in order to add some heft or credibility or mystery to the chatter. I just wrote their names in this paragraph. I didn't contact them to see if it was okay. Anyone with a keyboard can peck out their names, and a lot of people do, perhaps to sound important. I don't know who wrote the SERPO stuff but am highly confident that it wasn't Green or Puthoff. (I will expound on this in the final section of this interview---my 'rant'.)

Am I still on the Victor Martinez email list?
No. I asked to be removed from the list several months ago. The exchanges were interesting but got to be too much to absorb. On some days, there were 40 or 50 or more postings. It's fun if someone has the time. I don't. There was also a personal disagreement with Victor but it isn't important and I harbor no ill will. If I had a lot of free time, I would still like to monitor some of that stuff from afar.

SPRINGER: Have you noticed a decrease in the number of sighting reported in the Las Vegas area? Some believe the UFO "craze" is dying down to a "mild rumble" is this consistent with your experience over the past two to three years?

GEORGE KNAPP: No and no. I get as many messages about UFO sightings as I ever have. Unfortunately, there isn't much that can be done with them. if the witnesses have video or photos, I will take a look, but most don't. I produced a story several months ago about a LV man who has been recording weird objects in the sky for a year. He's got an amazing storehouse of footage, most of it shot in daylight from his home. I have no idea what these things are. Some look like balloons but perform maneuvers beyond what a balloon can do. Some look like classic saucers. Some look like gigantic plastic bags. Very strange. Maybe I can figure out a way to send a dub of my story to ATS.

The UFO craze isn't dying down. I think it's bigger than ever, but in a less obvious way. It's such an integral part of our culture now that we take it for granted. Area 51, for example, is now known all over the world and doesn't even generate a chuckle anymore. Ufologists know that sightings are cyclical. They come in spurts and waves. If there is a lull, or a perceived lull, it usually doesn't last, although no one has been able to predict when a new wave is coming. (This assessment also applies to those highly-evolved humans who say they can summon UFOs at will. You all know their names.)

My guess is that a mere UFO sighting or even a home video doesn't generate the same kind of media interest anymore because they are so common. An incident has to be pretty spectacular or offbeat to generate any kind of broad attention. I agree that this will become more pronounced in the future. The emergence of new UAVS and other advanced craft will probably mean that sightings and videos will become even less relevent because it will be all but impossible to differentiate them from legitimately mysterious craft. If the "aliens" or visitors still hope to provide occasional reminders that they are still among us, they're gonna need new wheels, something radically different from anything that we can build. It's happened before, by the way.

Please read Part III

[edit on 7-22-2006 by Springer]

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