"I don't know whether this story has ever been told or not. They weren't called UFOs. They were called enemy helicopters. And they were only seen at night and they were only seen in certain places. They were seen up around the DMZ in the early summer of '68. And this resulted in quite a little battle. And in the course of this, an Australian destroyer took a hit and we never found any enemy, we only found ourselves when this had all been sorted out. And this caused some shooting there, and there was no enemy at all involved but we always reacted. Always after dark. The same thing happened up at Pleiku at the Highlands in '69."
USAF Chief of Staff General George S. Brown
DoD Transcript of Press Conference in Illinois (10/16/1973).
"During my stint in the Navy I was on the ammunition ship USS Kilauea in the Indian Ocean somewhere near Vietnam around early 1974.
Myself and two friends were out on the Foxhull , it was dark, around 9 pm probably. There was little or no moon but millions of stars like always out there. We were in a group with a destroyer and a carrier, I think the USS Mason DD, and maybe the Oriskany.
We were watching the Mason in front of us and the glowing trail of ocean it was kicking up from the phosphorus algae in the water when the ocean in front of us lit up, started glowing. It got brighter and brighter and then this really bright orange/yellow ball came out of the water on the right-starboard side of the destroyer. It flew over the top of the destroyer and went back in the ocean on the port side, with the same glowing ocean water and then disappeared.
We all just stared at each other with our mouths open. We could not believe what we saw, but I asked friends of mine who were on watch on the bridge if they saw it and they all did. There was nothing ever reported that I know of though and we just quit talking about it. I bet the destroyer got a good look at it. It went right over the bridge of that ship and it was big. Maybe 150 to 200 feet in diameter".
Naval crewman Norman Burns -aboard the USS Kilauea in the Indian ocean,1974.
"It was while there that I discovered that there was a tremendous amount of UFO and alien activity in Vietnam. It was always reported in official messages as `enemy helicopters.' Now any of you who know anything about the Vietnam war know that the North Vietnamese did not have any helicopters, especially after our first couple of air raids into North Vietnam. Even if they had they would not have been so foolish as to bring them over the DMZ because that would have insured their demise. Our troops were fired on occasionally by these `enemy helicopters,' enemy troops were fired on occasionally by these `enemy helicopters,' and occasionally people would disappear"
This is the only known UFO photo taken during the Vietnam War. It was shot with an Electro-35 Yashica camera by an American serviceman traveling in the back of an army truck along a country road near Chu-Lei in March of 1967.
Image credit: UFO Photo Archives/Wendelle Stevens.
My friend John Miranda, who was the first to show me evidence for UFOs, heard first-hand an account from a co-worker in 1972: Andy (not his real name) had just served as an USAF Technical Sergeant in “what he described was the intelligence center in Thailand that coordinated the military aircraft flights over all of Vietnam. As he put it, ‘if there was a plane flying anywhere in S.E. Asia, this control center knew about it’.” It was probably the Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai Air Force Base, identified in FOIA documents discussed below.
Andy reported that “one day [probably in 1969] on multiple radars, they tracked an object traveling at 7,000 mph that repeatedly made right angle turns. They checked with the top commanders from Air Force, Army, Navy and Marines. All confirmed they had no aircraft flying in that area at the time. Of course, the folks in the intelligence center were warned never to speak of this event.”Miranda added that Andy was a sharp individual without tendency to exaggerate. “He knew exactly what he was telling me. And he had no reason to embellish the story.” Thus ended my first Vietnam UFO story. More were to follow.
The next sighting came from one of my mentors in the field, the late New York City Police detective Pete Mazzola. Pete, who passed away in 1987, had then formed a national organization called the SBI, for Scientific Bureau of Investigation. Pete served in Vietnam from 1965 until the end of that decade.
“There were several times, while on patrol in the jungle, that I had time to look up at the stars,” began Mazzola. “I saw more than a few unusual ‘shooting stars’ that maneuvered in a way no meteor could.” One incident left an indelible memory in the young soldier. Mazzola couldn’t remember the exact date, only that it was around 1966 or ’67. Mazzola’s patrol was pinned down in tall elephant grass when they saw something strange appear over the paddy fields and palm trees ahead.“I couldn’t believe what I saw,” continued Mazzola, “the other guys saw it too but afterwards were too shocked to talk much about it except to say, ‘What the hell was that?’”Mazzola’s job as Forward Observer for his platoon was to call in the coordinates of enemy positions to US Navy ships.
Mazzola heard the shells first from the south (the American warships positions) and “then the objects began to receive artillery rounds in the other direction, from the north [the Vietcong]. The shells never made the target. They all exploded short, we could see the black smoke puffs in the air.” The detective almost implied the UFO was doing something to explode the shells prematurely.The object continued to hover “silently, gracefully,” said Mazzola, and in less than five minutes “shot straight up in the air” and was gone.
On Sept. 29, 1972, as the war dragged on, the State Journal in Lansing, Michigan, published an AFP newswire report titled, “What Was UFO Over Hanoi?” The AFP correspondent in Hanoi, Jean Thoraval, wrote that “a mysterious object appeared in the clear blue sky over Hanoi Friday, attracting missile fire from the ground but apparently remaining motionless.”
Thoraval himself saw the object from the ground with binoculars. He described it as “spherical in shape and a luminous orange in color, and was clearly at a very high altitude.” North Vietnamese air defenses fired three surface-to-air missiles, which were unable to reach the target. The object remained in the same high spot for over one hour and 20 minutes, although towards the end “it appeared less bright than before.”
Nha Trang , at the time of the reported incident, was a heavily defended base in South Vietnam located along the coastline. It served as the home base for more than 40,000 troops, including 2,000 American GIs.
The base was situated in a valley, with warehouses and an airstrip to the east, a fuel storage area and hills to the west, and docks and storage facilities located to the south along the China Sea.
According to the witness, eight bulldozers were operating that night cutting roads around "Hawk Hill," located less than one-half mile to the west of the American compound. On another part of the base, two "sky-Raider" prop-driven aircraft were warming up on the airstrip located less than a mile to the east. At the same time, a Shell Oil tanker lay anchored in the bay about a mile to the southwest.
The witness, an enlisted soldier holding the rank of Specialist 5, had gathered with an undetermined number of fellow soldiers around 8 p.m. in an open area of the base to watch an outdoor movie.
Outdoor films had become possible only recently, according to the witness, thanks to the arrival and installation of six, new, independently-operated, 100 KW diesel-powered generators. One of these generators had been installed near the compound where the soldiers were seated and was being used to supply power for the movie projector.
The film had been underway for some time, according to the witness's account, when suddenly, at approximately 9:45 p.m., the sky to the north lit up! The GIs glanced up and saw what at first appeared to be a flare exploding above a ridge to the north.
"At first we thought it was a flare which are going off all the time and then we found that it wasn't" recounts a letter from the witness mailed home a few days later.
"It came from the north and was moving from real slow to real fast...Some of the jet fighter pilots which were here...said it looked to be about 25,000 feet (in altitude)... then the panic broke loose. It dropped right towards us and stopped dead still about 300 to 500 feet up. It made this little valley and the mountains around look like it was the middle of the day; it lit up everything.
"Then it went up and I mean up. It went straight up and completely out of sight in about 2-3 seconds. Everybody is still talking about it."
"That really shook everyone is that it stopped, or maybe it didn't, but anyway our generator stopped and everything was black. At the Air Force Base about one half mile from here all generators stopped.
The engines on two planes that were the runway ready to take off stopped, and there wasn't a car, truck, plane or anything that ran for about four minutes."
In addition, the eight bulldozers working on nearby hills also ceased operating according to the witness.
"A whole plane load of big shots from Washington got here this afternoon to investigate. It's on the radio over here. Is it at home? I swear if somebody says they saw a little green man I won't argue with them."
I was pulling Green-line duty with 3 other 1st Cav. soldiers who were sleeping. I had a star light scope, a radio and all the stuff you would expect in/on a bunker.. As I was scanning the western night sky. and all of a sudden something to the Northwest caught my eye.It was a very brilliant whitish, silver and with a hint of blue more of a rounded shape. It was fairly far away. The main thing about this object was it would move to my left, or South in jerky movements , hover, do it again and again. It never lost the same brilliance or colors the entire time. Additionally it left a amber or reddish trail (like a tracer) as it moved only to suddenly stop on a dime. I watched this thing for several minutes.
By this time it was in the Southern Horizon. Then, all of a sudden it shot up skyward on a 45 degree angle towards the North. It was totally out of sight in seconds. I was thinking should I report this? I decided not. I would wait to see if anyone else would, then I would to. I didn't have the presence of mine to wake the other guys. Mainly, I couldn't believe what I was seeing.
From late October through the middle of November 1975, high-security bases along the U.S.-Canada border were the scene of intrusions of what were euphemistically called "mystery helicopters," despite their unhelicopter-like appearance and behavior.
Map and Timeline of Events
Originally posted by karl 12
It seems there are quite a few UFO reports from soldiers,sailors and airmen during the Vietnam war - many of these objects were 'officialy' referred to as 'mystery helicopters' yet the reported flight characteristics,size and shape of these objects sound very strange indeed.
Below are some accounts,reports and testimony from military witnesses -if anyone knows of any more,please feel free to post.
K: Now, was your title a clerk? I understand that was a cover story? Is that correct?
C: You actually had, you had a real life in the military. You had an actual mission. The only time that this other stuff came into play was when they had a UFO incident that was to occur and you were in the immediate area of that.
I can tell you in 1965 in Vietnam there was a base camp there that tried to open fire on a UFO. At the very minute they tried to do that none of their weapons worked. All the electricity went out and remained so until after the UFO left. Not having the power on anything is very, very scary and those were very, very tense moments.
K: As a Communicator, you were called that just in terms of your military life, from what age did you start working in this capacity would you say?
C: It was probably at about the age of about 19 or 20.
C: When it comes to people who do Interfacing, there is no school for that. There were things that went on in your life, when I got out there were seven people that were still in the military that did Interfacing, only seven, and that was military-wide.
And I was put into an incident where we had a situation that we weren’t told exactly where it was but I know …that we landed at Ben Hua because when I look back, there was a sign, that’s where we landed.
K: Ben Hua?
C: That’s in Vietnam.
C: I know it was Ben Hua because it was the same when I went back. Now this was an incident that occurred…
K: Was it a crash? Or was it a visit?
C: We saw the entities.
C: This involved us going in and to try to extract an aircraft and we did, we cut it up into, I think, about seven pieces.
K: OK. Was it one of theirs?
C: No, no, no. This was a B-52…
C: …that didn’t crash normal.
K: Was it a time travel experience?
C: Nope. This was a craft that was shot down. Everybody was killed on… everybody was dead onboard the B-52.
K: Shot down by the visitors?
C: They were on a bombing mission over…. I have no way of knowing this but I would assume they were on a bombing mission over North Vietnam. The damage to the craft was as a result of anti-aircraft fire at the B-52. I mean the damage was that type. And it was used for conventional bombing. And where I said that we went in, we went from there by helicopter. But it was just like some giant hand had grabbed the plane out of mid-air and just set it on the jungle floor. And that’s what we were interested in.
C: We didn’t know, you are not told. When we got on the plane in the States to leave to go over there, we were told we were going to Florida.
K: So it’s fascinating, that we don’t think of Vietnam and during the war as a time when we would also be dealing with off-world cultures.
C: You know why? They truly were told to call them helicopters. You were in a war zone, so what you do is you go in and put a little Occam’s Razor in there and you eliminate to the lowest denominator.
UFOs can’t exist. Let me rephrase that. UFOs is not a good term. Interplanetary Conveyances cannot exist, so it has to be something very earthly.
NSA went ahead and would call UFOs "UFOs" when we were monitoring communications with the Soviet Union. But they always qualified that in hopes that with the initiation of the Sunshine Act, later to become the Freedom of Information Act, that they would not be subject to those acts by saying seven UFOs being reported by such and such a location and site.
But when they would say seven UFOs, in parentheses, they would put: probably balloons.
Disregard the fact that, in the one document I am talking about, the seven UFOs were traveling at 1700 mph. Balloons can’t do that.
Red and white at a distance of five feet outside the rotor disk and 200 feet over the airstrip at DaNang. No photo but I'll never forget what it looked like.
This is from memory but it was just after lunch. About 1300 on a July day. Sunshine and clear skies. Unlimited visibility. We took off and slowed way down at 200 feet. From 7 o'clock this thing comes up and starts to pace us about five feet outside of the rotor disk. The pilot called back to the field but radar said he saw nothing on the scope. Just us. We accelerated to the point that the aircraft shook and the thing stayed right there. Maybe a minute, then it just left us like we were backing up. You could hear it like an artillery shell over the noise of the aircraft. Best I recall it headed due north across the bay from DaNang.
HMAS HOBART HIT DURING VIETNAM UFO ENCOUNTER?
Story by Jon Wyatt
In June 1968 Australia was dismayed by the news that the guided-missile destroyer HMAS Hobart had been badly damaged by 'friendly fire' in Vietnam: Two crew died and seven were wounded during the USAF attack.
Officially, the Hobart 'Incident' occurred during a night operation against 'enemy helicopters' - but was it in reality a UFO story?
The evidence is very intriguing, and to find out why let's go to the beginning.
On Friday, 15 June 1968, Allied forward spotters along the eastern part of the Demilitarised Zone, a 9.6km wide strip separating North and South Vietnam, reported seeing about 30 strange slow-moving 'lights' in the night sky. At the time the belief was these were lumbering North Vietnamese Russian-built M-14 'Hound' helicopters ferrying men and materiel over the border.
After the sightings, Allied Command, fearing another Tet Offensive-style build-up, rushed more anti-aircraft guns to the border, and placed Phantom fighter-bombers at Danang Air Base on standby, and it also asked available Allied warships to patrol the DMZ coast. HMAS Hobart II one of those warships that responded.
That night, the forward spotters along the eastern DMZ again reported the 'enemy helicopters' had re-appeared, and the Allied forces sprang into action.
Details of the subsequent aerial 'melee' remain sketchy, but it is known several US 7th Air Force Phantom fighter-bombers soon arrived on the scene and began firing on the intruders; and were supported by anti-aircraft ground fire. During the Allied attack the 'enemy helicopters' were seen to move down the east coast and then out to the sea - and there things went terribly wrong.
A US Navy Board of Inquiry, which investigated the Hobart 'incident' for the Australian government, found shortcomings of the Phantom's radar system were partly to blame: to stop big targets flooding the radarscope the radar had a cut-off mechanism, so the returns from a warship and a slow moving low flying helicopter could appear similar on-screen.
After the 'lights' fled seaward, the first 'friendly fire' incident occurred shortly after midnight when the US Navy swift boat PCF-19 was sunk by three air-to-air missiles while patrolling some kilometres south of the DMZ. Five of the seven crew died. After daybreak, US helicopters airlifted the wounded Australian sailors to Danang and the damaged Hobart went to Subic Bay, Philippines, for repairs and was off the scene for five weeks -and that night DMZ 'lights' returned.
Viet Nam USMC Vet Observes Objects Following Jet Aircraft
Number of witnesses: 4
Number of objects: 8
Shape of objects: Just a dot in sky except for one, very bright red/blue light.
Full Description of event/sighting: We were sitting at the end of the flight line watching the Phantom F-4 jets take off on a bomb run when we saw the first of strange lights in the sky. They seemed to follow the jets, as a matter of fact (after talking with a mate in the tower) they were following the jets. At first there were only two lights, but in no time there were eight objects close to the jet aircraft. We thought they were MIG'S and radioed the same, but to our dismay no MIG aircraft were seen on the radar at that time.
They continued to follow for quite some time, now this is where it gets kind of weird. The jets came back to base and the pilots were saying they were being followed by an, quote - "Unidentified Aircraft". As the airplanes landed and the objects followed them to with in approximately 1000 feet of the run way. We could vaguely make out a shape of two of them, they were oval in shape with lots of lights and a very strange amber glow. The objects hovered for about 20 seconds, then they all shot off at a high rate of speed and were gone.
Although many strange stories have come out of the Vietnam conflict, there can be none stranger than that reported at a UFO Conference in Las Vegas in 1989 by an ex United States Air Force man who was serving as a photographer in Vietnam in the late sixties. He was involved in a mission to investigate the mysterious crash of a B-52 bomber, and was air lifted by helicopter into the jungle where the plane had gone down. The first surprise was to find the plane intact, and no sign of a crash landing: it was if the plane had been air lifted and placed into position. Inside the cabin, though was a greater shock. The four-man crew were still strapped into their seats, but all had been mutilated with the typical clean-cut wounds that we see in the animal mutilations. After inspecting the plane and photographing both it and the occupants, the investigation team was ordered to burn the plane and the occupants.
graphic link-discretion advised
Twr 72 rpts [reports] object flying into their area about 700m infront [sic] of them, AZ 310°. Object came in slow over the ASP [Ammunition Supply Point] & landed. When object moves it has a glowing light. It is about 15 – 20 ft across. It is shaped like a big egg. Control twr rpts their radar did not pick anything up. Object also does not seem to have any sound to it when it moves.
oe Gillette ends his piece by analyzing all the possible conventional explanations that could have triggered such an unusual report, such as flares or drug use, although he doesn’t find them particularly convincing. His analysis is worth quoting in full: Possible conventional explanations for the sighting exist. Tracer rounds and flares both create illumination. But tracer rounds don’t float to the ground and certainly aren’t shaped like an ‘egg’, and flares might float to the ground, but aren’t egg shaped either. Additionally, drug use by soldiers, particularly by 1969, was a known problem in Vietnam. But two or more soldiers typically manned these towers. Assuming this was a drug-induced vision, it’s difficult to imagine they each experienced the same hallucination, although if they were observing something they could not readily identify, one might have convinced the others they were seeing a UFO. Boredom too could have resulted in a bout of creative storytelling, but if discovered, the soldiers risked disciplinary action. So while potential conventional explanations exist for both the sighting and the report, nothing in the journals tells us which of those might have been at work.
The truth may be out there, but it isn’t in these records. Although the log entry is quite short, some of the characteristics described do match those of UFOs reported elsewhere in the literature. The unnamed soldiers state the object was flying slow just before it landed and that it had “a glowing light.” It was not picked up by radar (common in many UFO cases and now available also in military stealth technology) and it didn’t make any sound—common again in countless UFO sightings. The object’s egg-shape, if not the most typical, can certainly be found in ufological records. One famous case that comes to mind is the Socorro, New Mexico, landing of April 1964 reported by policeman Lonnie Zamora, which was definitely shaped like an egg, and there are many others in the UFO annals.