WHAT THE ROSWELL INCIDENT WAS NOT
Before discussing specific positive results that these efforts revealed, it is first appropriate to discuss those things, as indicated by information
available to the Air Force, that the "Roswell Incident" was not:
1. An Airplane Crash
Of all the things that are documented and tracked within the Air Force, among the most detailed and scrupulous are airplane crashes. In fact, records
of air crashes go back to the first years of military flight. Safety records and reports are available for all crashes that involved serious damage,
injury, death, or a combination of these factors.
These records also include incidents involving experimental or classified aircraft. USAF records showed that between June 24, 1947, and July 28, 1947,
there were five crashes in New Mexico alone, involving A-26C, P-5 IN, C-82A, P-80A and PQ-14B aircraft; however, none of these were on the date(s) in
question nor in the area(s) in question.
In this area, the search efforts revealed that there are no air safety records pertaining to weather balloon crashes (all weather balloons "crash"
sooner or later); however, there are provisions for generating reports of "crashes" as ground safety incidents in the unlikely chance that a balloon
injures someone or causes damage.
However, such records are only maintained for five years.
2. A Missile Crash
A crashed or errant missile, usually described as a captured German V-2 or one of its variants, is sometimes set forth as a possible explanation for
the debris recovered near Roswell.
Since much of this testing done at nearby White Sands was secret at the time, it would be logical to assume that the government would handle any
missile mishap under tight security, particularly if the mishap occurred on private land.
From the records reviewed by the Air Force, however, there was nothing located to suggest that this was the case. Although the bulk of remaining
testing records are under the control of the US Army, the subject has also been very well documented over the years within Air Force records. There
would be no reason to keep such information classified today.
The USAF found no indicators or even hints that a missile was involved in this matter.
3. A Nuclear Accident
One of the areas considered was that whatever happened near Roswell may have involved nuclear weapons.
This was a logical area of concern since the 509th Bomb Group was the only military unit in the world at the time that had access to nuclear weapons.
Again, reviews of available records gave no indication that this was the case.
A number of records still classified TOP SECRET and SECRET-RESTRICTED DATA having to do with nuclear weapons were located in the Federal Records
Center in St. Louis, MO . These records, which pertained to the 509th, had nothing to do with any activities that could have been misinterpreted as
the "Roswell Incident."
Also, any records of a nuclear related incident would have been inherited by the Department of Energy (DOE), and, had one occurred, it is likely DOE
would have publicly reported it as part of its recent declassification and public release efforts.
There were no ancillary records in Air Force files to indicate the potential existence of such records within DOE channels, however.
4. An Extraterrestrial Craft
The Air Force research found absolutely no indication that what happened near Roswell in 1947, involved any type of extraterrestrial spacecraft.
This, of course, is the crux of this entire matter. "Pro-UFO" persons who obtain a copy of this report, at this point, most probably begin the
"cover-up is still on" claims.
Nevertheless, the research indicated absolutely no evidence of any kind that a spaceship crashed near Roswell or that any alien occupants were
recovered therefrom, in some secret military operation or otherwise. This does not mean, however, that the early Air Force was not concerned about
However, in the early days, "UFO" meant Unidentified Flying Object, which literally translated as some object in the air that was not readily
identifiable. It did not mean, as the term has evolved in today's language, to equate to alien spaceships.
Records from the period reviewed by Air Force researchers as well as those cited by the authors mentioned before, do indicate that the USAF was
seriously concerned about the inability to adequately identify unknown flying objects reported in American airspace. All the records, however,
indicated that the focus of concern was not on aliens, hostile or otherwise, but on the Soviet Union. Many documents from that period speak to the
possibility of developmental secret Soviet aircraft overflying US airspace.