"I'm a little bit apologetic about this because obviously, when I was in MoD, I had to play this game myself. To really achieve our policy of downplaying the UFO phenomenon, we would use a combination of 'spin and dirty tricks.' "We used terms like UFO buffs and UFO spotters -- terms that mean these people are nut jobs. In other words, we were implying that this is just a very somewhat quaint hobby that people have as opposed to a serious research interest." But Pope said the ridicule policy went much further than that. "Another trick would be deliberately using phrases like 'little green men.' We were trying to do two things: either to kill any media story on the subject, or if a media story ran, insure that it ran in such a way that it would make the subject seem ridiculous and that it would make people who were interested in this seem ridiculous." WATCH: Pope further admits that he may have been the one who drafted actual MoD statements that contributed to the ridicule policy. "If it was my words, then I apologize, I'm very sorry for that. I believe in open government and freedom of information. I believe that the UFO phenomenon does raise important defense, national security and air safety issues, and if I helped kill any initiative on that, I'm deeply sorry." Some U.K. cases were apparently easier than others in trying to make them seem non-credible. Like the file that describes UFOs reported at the June 2003 Glastonbury Music Festival. "It was very easy to find an incident where something is seen at an event like a rock concert," Pope noted. "You don't even need to say a thing without the public or media perception being that drugs and alcohol might have played a part. It was all part of the way in which we spun the subject, to try and discredit it."
A file from 1993 (while Pope was chief of the UFO Project) describes how European Union funds had been wasted on a report that included a theory that aliens had established a base in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.
Pope concedes there's still no written evidence confirming alien visits to Earth.
"Not just yet -- there's no spaceship-in-a-hangar smoking gun. However, there are plenty of sightings that I think show that we're dealing with more than just aircraft lights and weather balloons."
Yeah he kind of did, he answered any questions which came his way, even those which questioned his own agenda for doing what he's doing. Again, no idea if he was telling the truth, but he seemed ok.
Originally posted by skunknuts
reply to post by Acidtastic
Ah, well that would be somewhat disappointing....Of course, the real knowledge is held above the PR people anyway....
So, did Pope seem like a credible guy in person?
Originally posted by Acidtastic
Yeah, dirty tricks have been used for years and years. Good to see someone else with a little insider knowledge speaking of it though. Not that it'll change much, those who have bought into the ridiculing system, will continue to do so.
Some U.K. cases were apparently easier than others in trying to make them seem non-credible. Like the file that describes UFOs reported at the June 2003 Glastonbury Music Festival. "It was very easy to find an incident where something is seen at an event like a rock concert," Pope noted.