FBI: “discs recovered”, Air Force “greatly concerned”, “at a complete loss” + more memos

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posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:07 AM
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I've uploaded searchable versions of FBI documents relevant to ufology to a directory at the link below. Some highlights from that collection are given in the lengthy post below. Various issues requiring follow-up action and research are also indicated (particularly in Part G and Part H below)

By clicking on an option at the top right of that webpage, you can download all of these FBI files with a single click (which is considerably less time consuming than going to the individual links for each file on the FBI websites, which I'll give in the course of this thread anyway):
www.box.com...



Due to the bandwidth problems that a couple of people encountered last time I previously posted (with the permission of the Canadian government) a popular collection of UFO documents on the file storage website at the above link, this time I’ve also uploaded the same FBI material to the "Skydrive" file storage website at the link below (which can, hopefully, also be downloaded easily by going to "Folder actions" on the top left of the screen and selecting "download folder") :
sdrv.ms...

The downloadable collection of PDF files at the links above is limited to documents from the FBI websites themselves (both the FBI’s current “Vault” website and the FBI’s previous FOIA website), but goes beyond the 16 files labelled “UFO” on the FBI website. As detailed below, this collection also includes the FBI files on NICAP (a UFO group), cattle mutilations, the MJ-12 documents, extrasensory perception, Carl Sagan, Nikola Tesla, Wilhelm Reich, Jack Parsons and Silas Newton.

Most of you will probably be familiar with at least some of this material from the current FBI FOIA website (index at the first link below) and/or remember the previous FBI FOIA website (index at the second link below), but I thought it worth creating an easily downloadable collection of searchable copies of the relevant files (with a discussion below of further apparently relevant files that aren’t on the current FBI website nor in the cached version of the old FBI website).
vault.fbi.gov...
preview.tinyurl.com...

Some of you may recall that when the FBI relaunched its FOIA website last year there was a lot of inaccurate publicity about the release of "new" files. Basically, the new FBI "vault" which gathered so much publicity was just a new interface to make it easier and faster to access documents on the FBI website. Previously, the UFO documents on the FBI website were simply grouped into various downloadable PDF documents. However, in fact during the various revisions to the FBI websites over the years there has been a reduction in the amount of FBI documentation available online which was indirectly relevant to ufology. Several files that had previously been available on the FBI’s FBOIA website are not included in the new “Vault” website. However, I've found copies of several of those files on older versions of the FBI's websites (e.g. files on Nikola Tesla, Reich and Jack Parsons) and included them in the collection at the links above along with the material currently available on the FBI website (including the material explicitly labelled "UFO" in addition to the files on NICAP, Silas Newton, Carl Sagan, Roswell, MJ-12, Guy Hottel's memo, extrasensory perception, cattle mutilations and Project Blue Book).

As a reaction to the inaccurate coverage last year, I posted a thread at the link below entitled "Debunked! The FBI alien bodies memo – A case study in the reinvention of the wheel" (which largely focussed on the Guy Hottel memo):
www.abovetopsecret.com...

However, that thread was posted before my focus turned to making source documentation available to download and search as easily as possible.

Frankly, I think that ufology could benefit considerably from making more underlying documentation easily available in a searchable format. Once downloaded, the entire directory of FBI files at the links above can be read or searched quickly and easily (together with, if you wish, various UFO magazines/journals, other official documents, UFO books, academic dissertations relating to UFOs etc) using a method I’ve previously outlined in another thread: FAST searching of major free online collections of UFO journals (or just browse/download them).

Come on, be honest... How many of you already knew each of the following (covered in more detail in the various section below)?

(1) The 16 PDF files labelled “UFO” on the FBI website are NOT the only documents on that website which are relevant to ufology?

(2) Some other PDF files relevant to ufology have been REMOVED from the FBI’s Freedom Of Information Act website during the FBI’s periodic reinventions of its website, including the launch of its new and improved interface (called “The Vault”) in 2011?

(3) Additional files relevant to ufology have apparently never been put on the FBI’s Freedom Of Information Act website, but hard copies have been made available by the FBI to some researchers?

(4) The material that is on the FBI’s website includes a memo recording that the Air Force was “greatly concerned” about UFOs?

(5) Another FBI memo refers to the Air Force being “at a complete loss” to explain one classic UFO case?

(6) The FBI was involved in a forensic analysis in relation to one classic UFO case?

(7) The FBI later repeatedly stated that the investigation of UFOs “is not and never has been a matter that is within the investigative jurisdiction of the FBI”.


I hope that this thread helps prompt more of an effort to obtain (and make available searchable PDF copies of) other FBI files of interest to ufologists not explicitly labelled "UFO" by the FBI, e.g. files relating to specific contactees/witnesses and UFO researchers. Various researchers (particularly Nick Redfern) have written about such files and some relevant files are identified in this thread. I think ufology would benefit from full copies of relevant files being easily accessible (rather than merely summaries of them).

edit on 6-2-2013 by IsaacKoi because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:09 AM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 


+23 more 
posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:09 AM
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This post is split into the following sections:

Part A : This brief introduction

Part B : Files labelled “UFO” from current FBI website
Part B1 : Roswell and Hoover on access to “discs recovered” (1947)
Part B2 : The toilet seat upset (1947)
Part B3 : The Guy Hottel memo (1950)
Part B4 : Were UFOs a secret military project?
Part B5 : The Air Force and Men In Black
Part B6 : Air Force “greatly concerned” memo (1952)
Part B7 : Air Force at a “complete loss” memo (1952)
Part B8 : FBI forensic examination in scoutmaster case (1952)
Part B9: Lonnie Zamora sighting at Socorro (1964)
Part B10 : “Alien” photo in FBI files (1967)
Part B11 : Other documents that caught my eye
Part B12 : FBI responses to queries about its involvement in UFO investigations

Part C : Relevant files not labelled “UFO” from FBI current website
Part C1 : Majestic 12
Part C2 : Bluebook
Part C3 : NICAP
Part C4 : Roswell
Part C5 : Guy Hottel
Part C6 : Silas Newton
Part C7 : Carl Sagan
Part C8 : Cattle mutilations
Part C9 : Extrasensory perception


Part D : Recovered additional files that used to be on the FBI website
Part D1 : Jack Parsons
Part D2 : Wilhelm Reich
Part D3 : Nikola Tesla


Part E : Unrecovered additional files that used to be on the FBI website
Part E1 : Philip Corso

Part F : Files on other websites purporting to be FBI releases
Part F1 : Philip Corso
Part F2 : J Allen Hynek
Part F4 : Phil Klass
Part F4 : L Ron Hubbard / Church of Scientology

Part G : Files not online purportedly released to some researchers
Part G1 : Files listed by Nick Redfern
Part G2 : Jan Aldrich’s list
Part G3 : Barry Greenwood’s list

Part H : Conclusion

Part I : References

Part J : Postscript

All the files that I cover in Part B, Part C and Part D are available in the collection of FBI files at the link at the start of this page.

Those members fairly familiar with the FBI documents relating to UFOs which are already available online are urged to head straight to Part F, (particularly) Part G and the Part H (the Conclusion) below in the hope that the issues arising from those Parts can be taken forward.

The material below in Part F and Part G (particularly the latter) should, at the very least, give some ideas for focused Freedom Of Information Act requests to the FBI, so that complete copies of the files mentioned in those categories can be added to the above collection of files.

It is fairly easy to make FOIA requests to the FBI via a page on its website at the link below:
www.fbi.gov...


edit on 6-2-2013 by IsaacKoi because: (no reason given)
edit on 6-2-2013 by IsaacKoi because: (no reason given)


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posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:10 AM
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Part B : Files labelled “UFO” from current FBI website



The FBI’s current website has a page entitled “UFO” which lists 16 files of documents relating to UFOs. That page is at:
vault.fbi.gov...

Those 16 files form the core of the downloadable collection at the link I gave at the start of this thread, with the file names:

fbi foia website part 1 of 16
fbi foia website part 2 of 16
fbi foia website part 3 of 16
fbi foia website part 4 of 16
fbi foia website part 5 of 16
fbi foia website part 6 of 16
fbi foia website part 7 of 16
fbi foia website part 8 of 16
fbi foia website part 9 of 16
fbi foia website part 10 of 16
fbi foia website part 11 of 16
fbi foia website part 12 of 16
fbi foia website part 13 of 16
fbi foia website part 14 of 16
fbi foia website part 15 of 16
fbi foia website part 16 of 16


These 16 files got a lot of publicity last year when the FBI relaunched its Freedom Of Information Act website under the catchy name of “The Vault”. A lot of the publicity suggested that these were newly released files. As I wrote (repeatedly…) at that time, this set of FBI documents had been on the FBI’s previous website for several years, and were in fact released to the public in the 1970s. These FBI documents were briefly discussed in Stanton Friedman's 1979 documentary "UFOs ARE Real!":



The FBI documents have been discussed in numerous UFO books since the 1970s. Several of the documents were published by George Fawcett and Barry Greenwood in their book “Clear Intent” in 1984 and in many other books since then. Particularly noteworthy are the following two books which focus on these documents, the latter of which can be bought easily and quite cheaply second hand - both are very interesting:

(1) Bruce Maccabee's book “UFO FBI Connection” (2000) .

(2) Nick Redfern's book “The FBI Files” (1998) published as a Simon & Schuster softcover edition and also in a Pocket Books paperback edition.

Bruce Maccabee has also discussed the documents in some detail in various presentations, including one which can be watched online at:



In this section (Part B of this thread), I highlight below some of the documents from the files labelled “UFO” on the current FBI website:

Part B1 : Roswell and Hoover on access to “discs recovered” (1947)
Part B2 : The toilet seat upset (1947)
Part B3 : The Guy Hottel memo (1950)
Part B4 : Were UFOs a secret military project?
Part B5 : The Air Force and Men In Black
Part B6 : Air Force “greatly concerned” memo (1952)
Part B7 : Air Force at a “complete loss” memo (1952)
Part B8 : FBI forensic examination in scoutmaster case (1952)
Part B9: Lonnie Zamora sighting at Socorro (1964)
Part B10 : “Alien” photo in FBI files (1967)
Part B11 : Other documents that caught my eye
Part B12 : FBI responses to queries about its involvement in UFO investigations


edit on 6-2-2013 by IsaacKoi because: (no reason given)


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posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:11 AM
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Part B1 : Roswell and Hoover on access to discs recovered (1947)



The teletype dated 8 July 1947 shown below expressly relates to the Roswell incident. (It can also be found in Part 2 of 16 at page 5 of 79 and at the link mentioned in Part C4 below).


This document indicates that “the object found resembles a high altitude weather balloon with a radar reflector”, which would appear to be consistent with the subsequent Air Force attempts to debunk the Roswell UFO crash stories. However, the document continues with the intriguing (and frustratingly vague…) comment that “but that telephonic conversation between their office and Wright Field had not xxxxxxxxxx borne out this belief”.




The name redacted in the above copy of the memo appears on some websites as Major Curtan, indicating that the FBI released an unredacted copy of this memo at some point. See, for example, a post by Don Allen from 1992 at:
www.v-j-enterprises.com...



From: dona@bilver.uucp (Don Allen)
Newsgroups: alt.alien.visitors,alt.conspiracy,sci.skeptic
Subject: FILE: Roswell - FBI Memo
Date: 15 Sep 92 04:06:43 GMT



FBI DALLAS 7-8-47 6-17 PM

DIRECTOR AND SAC, CINCINNATI URGENT

FLYING DISC, INFORMATION CONCERNING. MAJOR CURTAN, HEADQUARTERS

EIGHTH AIR FORCE, TELEPHONICALLY ADVISED THIS OFFICE THAT AN OBJECT

PURPORTING TO BE A FLYING DISC WAS RE COVERED NEAR ROSWELL, NEW

MEXICO, THIS DATE. THE DISC IS HEXAGONAL IN SHAPE AND WAS SUSPENDED

FROM A BALLON BY A CABLE, WHICH BALLON WAS APPROXIMATELY TWENTY

FEET IN DIAMETER. MAJOR CURTAN FURTHER ADVISED THAT THE OBJECT
FOUND RESEMBLES A HIGH ALTITUDE WEATHER BALLOON WITH A RADAR

REFLECTOR, BUT THAT TELEPHONIC CONVERSATION BETWEEN THEIR OFFICE AND

WRIGHT FIELD HAD NOT xxxxxxxxxx BORNE OUT THIS BELIEF. DISC AND

BALLOON BEING TRANSPORTED TO WRIGHT FIELD BY SPECIAL PLANE FOR EXAMIN

INFORMATION PROVIDED THIS OFFICE BECAUSE OF NATIONAL INTEREST IN CASE

xxxx AND FACT THAT NATIONAL BROADCASTING COMPANY, ASSOCIATED PRESS, A

OTHERS ATTEMPTING TO BREAK STORY OF LOCATION OF DISC TODAY. MAJOR

CURTAN ADVISED WOULD REQUEST WRIGHT FIELD TO ADVISE CINCINNATI

OFFICE RESULTS OF EXAMINATION. NO FURTHER INVESTIGATION BEING

CONDUCTED.




(Clearly, finding any unredacted copies of official documents is much preferable to simply using redacted copies since, amongst other things, relevant names make further investigations much easier).


A report on Roswell published by the United State Air Force in 1995 entitled “The Roswell Report Fact vs. Fiction in the New Mexico Desert” (written by Colonel Richard Weaver and 1st Lt James McAndrew) quotes part of this memo at page 22 in the following paragraph (page 39 of 998 in the PDF version at the link below):

contrails.iit.edu...


what was originally reported to have been recovered was a balloon of some sort, usually described as a "weather balloon," although the majority of the wreckage that was ultimately displayed by General Ramey and Major Marcel in the famous photos (Atch 16) in Fort Worth was that of a radar target normally suspended from balloons. This radar target, discussed in more detail later, was certainly consistent with the description of July 9 newspaper article which discussed "tinfoil, paper, tape, and sticks." Additionally, the description of the "flying disc" was consistent with a document routinely used by most pro-UFO writers to indicate a conspiracy in progress-the telegram from the Dallas FBI office of July 8, 1947. This document quoted in part states: " ... The disc is hexagonal in shape and was suspended from a balloon by a cable, which balloon was approximately twenty feet in diameter .... the object found resembles a high altitude weather balloon with a radar reflector .... disc and balloon being transported .... "


As will be apparent to anyone looking at the full document above, that Air Force report was extremely selective in its quotation. Richard Weaver quoted the words “the object found resembles a high altitude weather balloon with a radar reflector” but then completely skips the intriguing words that follow “but that telephonic conversation between their office and Wright Field had not xxxxxxxxxx borne out this belief”.

Umm, excuse me, but that sort of partial quotation is just not cricket (and reinforces the desirability of having the source material as easily accessible and searchable as possible…)!


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posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:12 AM
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To be fair to the Air Force, both sides in the believer/sceptics battle tend to focus on the bits of the memo that help their case. Believers point to the fact that the memo appears to state (unfortunately without giving any relevant facts) that a telephonic conversation had not borne out a belief that the object was a high altitude weather balloon, often seeming to ignore the fact that the description in that memo of the debris does not sound like an alien spaceship as typically envisaged by most humans…

This memo was highlighted in the 1980 book "The Roswell Incident" by Charles Berlitz and William L. Moore. Berlitz and Moore related the above Roswell memo to another memo annotated by Hoover.

That book also highlighted an even more controversial annotation by J Edgar Hoover on another FBI memo relating to UFOs.


The memo shown below (dated 10 July 1947) has a handwritten annotation by J Edgar Hoover added at the end of the second page which refers to “access to discs recovered”. (The memo appears in the Part 1 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files, at pages 44 and 45 of 69):

Page 1:





Page 2:





This annotation by Hoover keeps cropping up online as an allegedly “new” release. This has been going on for years and years.

For example, back in 1999 (yes, 14 years ago…), Stanton Friedman observed that this memo was included in the material released in the 1970s (mentioned above) and stated that “Yes, there really was a lot done before the internet became so popular”:
ufoupdateslist.com...

(I would add that there was a lot done before the Internet became so popular WHICH IS NOT CURRENTLY AVAILABLE ONLINE, SO A LOT OF TIME IS WASTED REINVENTING THE WHEEL – HENCE MY INTEREST IN MAKING AS MUCH SOURCE MATERIAL FREELY AVAILABLE AS POSSIBLE IN EASILY SEARCHABLE FORMATS).

The typewritten part of the memo (from Fitch to Assistant Director D M Ladd) dated 10 July 1947 relates to a request by the Air Force for “the assistance of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in locating and questioning the individuals who first sighted the so-called flying disks in order to ascertain whether or not they are sincere in their statements that they saw these disks, or whether their statements were promoted by personal desire for publicity or political reasons”.

An addendum typed at the end of the memo “DML” (i.e. Assistant Director D M Ladd) stated that “I would recommend that we advise the Army that the Bureau does not believe it should go into these investigations, it being noted that a great bulk of those alleged discs reported found have been pranks. It is not believed that the Bureau would accomplish anything by going into these investigations”.

A handwritten annotation then stated “I think we should do this”.

The final annotation at the bottom of the second page of that memo was by Hoover himself. It was transcribed by FBI official E G Fitch in another memo below (dated 24 July 1947, at page 38 of 69 in Part 1) at the end of the first paragraph as:
“I would do it but before agreeing to it we must insist upon full access to discs recovered. For instance in the La. case the Army grabbed it and would not let us have it for cursory examination”.


Since even the identification of the location mentioned by Hoover in his annotation is fairly controversial, here is an enlargement of his annotation on the second page of the memo:



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:12 AM
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Hoover’s annotation has been the subject of considerable debate over the years.

Taken out of context, Hoover’s annotation seems fairly exciting. The phrase “discs recovered” and reference to the Army having “grabbed” one disc has been taken by some as implying that something exotic had previously been recovered. For example, a previous thread on Abovetopsecret.com used this document as the basis for a claim that “J Edgar Hoover admitted Army recovered downed UFO”.

However, it is important to consider such snippets in their context - which is one reason for my having taken some time to make it easy to download collections of various official documents, so that anyone can quickly and easily skim through relevant source material (or study the documents in more detail if they wish…).

Most people that spend, say, an hour or so going through the material in the first couple of files labelled “UFO” in the downloadable archive mentioned above, will probably be surprised how many hoaxes are detailed in those documents.

There is a tendency these days to think of hoaxes as being something created on computers and it is common to see posts querying whether a UFO photo or video is “CGI” (i.e. Computer Generated Imagery), but in fact hoaxes have been a significant element of the UFO phenomenon for many, many years.

The FBI files for 1947 include several hoaxes created by people planting, or (in some cases) throwing, crude home-made “flying discs” a few feet in diameter.

This type of quaint hoax continued after 1947, e.g. on 11 September 1967, six bleeping disks were found in southern England. Students Chris Southall and David Harrison of the Farnborough Royal Aircraft Establishment are later reported as claiming that they fabricated the saucers using a mold as a fund raising stunt – see the “Daily Mail” article below about the 1967 hoax entitled “Attack of the flying saucers! How six 'UFOs' sparked a nationwide panic when they landed in Britain in 1967”

www.dailymail.co.uk...

The popularity of crashed disc hoaxes during 1947 is indicated by a list in an article entitled “The UFO Summer of ‘47” by Jan Aldrich on the greatly under-rated and under-appreciated “Project 1947” website at the link below:
www.project1947.com...



The possibility that Hoover’s annotation about recovery of a crashed disc merely related to one of these many hoaxed discs has been raised since the earliest discussions of Hoover’s annotation. In particular, various researchers have suggested that the annotation relates to a hoax in Shreveport (in Louisiana, commonly abbreviated to “La.”) in 1947, discussed in some detail below.

Author Frank Scully referred to this hoax in his book “Behind the Flying Saucer”, which includes the following



“A saucer, whirling through the air, shooting smoke and fire, landed in a downtown street. This one was seemingly solved without recourse to either the FBI or Air Force Intelligence. The Shreveport police said it was the work of a prankster, who had launched the homemade disk from the top of an office building. The saucer had a fluorescent light starter and two electric fan condensers. It couldn't fly either.”


The Louisiana hoax was also reported in front-page newspaper stories at the time.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:13 AM
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For example, here is an extract from The Daily News for Wednesday 9 July 1947 (kindly supplied to me by Norwegian UFO researcher Ole Jonny Braenne):









Similarly, here is an extract from The Oelwin Daily Register for Wednesday 9 July 1947 (also kindly supplied to me by Norwegian UFO researcher Ole Jonny Braenne):








But the Louisiana hoax explanation has not been universally accepted, for various reasons discussed below. For example, one of the first books to discuss this memo was “The Roswell Incident” (1980) by Charles Berlitz and William Moore’s book and it included the following:



“… The fact that the memo is dated "July 15, 1947" is, however, highly significant, as is the uncertain reference to location which could be either "SW" (for Southwest) or "LA" (for Louisiana or perhaps even Los Angeles - the area in which Edwards Air Force Base is located).

The Louisiana possibility, which has been suggested by some researchers to be a reference to a saucer hoax involving a sixteen-inch aluminum disc and some radio parts that took place in Shreveport on July 7, 1947, is almost totally ruled out by two FBI memos dealing with that case, one of which originates from the FBI Field Office in New Orleans and the other of which is from Hoover himself (both dated July 7). While Hoover's annotation above clearly indicates that he was referring to a crashed disc that "the Army grabbed... and would not let [the FBI] have" for examination, the two Louisiana memos referring to the Shreveport case plainly show that just the opposite was true and that the Army Air Force did indeed cooperate with the FBI on this case.


Charles Berlitz and William Moore went on to say that “the evidence that Hoover was in fact referring to the New Mexico crash becomes even stronger in light of another FBI memo which was brought to the attention of the authors by researcher Brad Sparks. This one, a copy of an "Urgent" July 8, 1947, teletype communication between the FBI's Dallas Field Office and the Cincinnati Field Office, with copies to Hoover and the Strategic Air Command, refers directly to the Roswell Incident”.

Charles Berlitz and William Moore commented in their book that “At no point was the FBI given access to the [Roswell] disc or wreckage recovered, exactly as indicated by Hoover's July 15 memo”.

Issues that have been raised include:

Firstly, whether the letters in Hoover’s handwritten annotation are “La.”.

Secondly, if Hoover’s handwritten annotation is “La”, whether Hoover was referring to the Shreveport, Louisiana hoax.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:13 AM
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In relation to the first issue (i.e. identifying the letters in Hoover’s handwritten annotation), Hoover’s handwriting is not entirely clear. However, most (but not all) people agree that the annotation says “La”. A minority of people have researchers, however, put forward a wide range of alternatives have been proposed. These alternatives include:

(a) “SW” (for Southwest) – proposed by Charles Berlitz and William Moore, who claimed that Hoover was referring to the (alleged) UFO crash in Roswell, New Mexico.

(b) “LA” (for Los Angeles) – This was an alternative proposed by Charles Berlitz and William Moore, who stated that Los Angeles is “the area in which Edwards Air Force Base is located. A Telegraph newspaper article at the link below. Los Angeles has also been put forward as a candidate by some researchers that do not link the memo to Roswell, e.g. Ryan Wood has queried whether the “La” case was Los Angeles “because of the air raid” (in Ryan Wood’s paper in the MUFON Symposium Proceedings 2001 at pages 132-133, i.e. pages 132-133 of 217 of PDF version) and an article on the website of The Telegraph newspaper has also linked the memo to the “famous incident when flying saucers were allegedly fired at over Los Angeles in 1942”.

(c) “LA” (for Los Alamos) – Ryan Wood has queried whether queried whether the “La” case was Los Alamos “because that is where Roswell wreckage was taken” (in Ryan Wood’s paper in the MUFON Symposium Proceedings 2001 at pages 132-133, i.e. pages 132-133 of 217 of PDF version).

(d) “Soc.” (referring to Socorro, New Mexico – proposed by LeRoy Pea in the Appendix to James Moseley’s book “UFO Crash Secrets at Wright Patterson Air Force Base”)

(e) “2a” –mentioned by Kevin Randle and Don Schmitt as being “possibly a specific case number” in their item about this memo in the IUR journal (May/June 1994 issue, at pages 15-16)

(f) “Gov” – a possibility mentioned by Kevin Randle and Don Schmitt in the IUR journal (May/June 1994 issue, at pages 15-16)

(g) “Sov” – a possibility mentioned by Kevin Randle in an article entitled “The FBI Memo and Roswell” on his blog in 2011.

In the Internet age, it is fairly easy to find some other samples of Hoover’s handwritten. There is no excuse for failing to look at some of those samples when considering this issue, so I’ll post below one such sample from an autograph signed by Hoover which says “To Robert O. Sypolt Best wishes J. Edgar Hoover” (since it contains a useful sample of a capital “S” as written by Hoover):



I think that sample of a capital “S” is quite different from the “La” written by Hoover in his “discs recovered” annotation.

The letters look like “La” to me and I see no reason for rejecting that interpretation of Hoover’s annotation when it was typed up in the FBI memo dated 24 July 1947 by FBI official E G Fitch quoted above.

For ease of reference, I’ll repeat below the copy of Hoover’s annotation about access to “discs recovered”:



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:13 AM
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In relation to the second issue (i.e. if Hoover’s handwritten annotation is “La”, whether Hoover was referring to the Shreveport, Louisiana hoax) two main points have been raised. Firstly, one researcher (Anthony Braglia) has claimed that the abbreviation “La.” would not have been used by Hoover in 1947. Secondly, various researchers have questioned whether the facts relating to the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax are consistent with Hoover’s annotation.

Regarding the use of the “La” abbreviation in 1947, Tony Barglia’s reasoning is based on a false premise. In Anthony Bragalia’s article “J Edgar Hoover’s Saucer Crash Secrets” (2011), he claimed that Hoover’s handwriting is unclear and “could just as easily be interpreted as ‘Sw’ for Southwest (as in NM) or as ‘LA’” for “Los Alamos” or “Los Angeles”. He went on to say:



“What is known is that the modern two-letter abbreviated codes for the states within the US were originated by the US Post Office in 1963, over 15 years after the date of this document. If the USG did not officially use ‘La’ or ‘La.’ to signify Louisiana, would Hoover?”


However, Tony Bragalia was – quite simply - wrong to suggest that the “La” abbreviation for “Louisiana” was “originated by the US Post Office in 1963, over 15 years after the date of this document”.

The history of such abbreviations has been summarised in a document written by a historian for the United States Postal Service in December 2011 at the link below:
about.usps.com...

That historian wrote:


Until 1963 the Post Office Department preferred that state and territorial names be written out in full to avoid confusion, but accepted the popular public practice of abbreviation.

The Department published lists of preferred state abbreviations in the 1831 Table of Post Offices in the United States and in the United States Official Postal Guide, first published in 1874. Most of the preferred abbreviations in 1874 remained the same for nearly the next 90 years.



“Preferred Abbreviations for States/Territories”

Louisiana :
1831 : La.
1874 : La.
1943 : La.
6/1963 : LA
10/1963 : LA”


It is notable that researcher Ryan Wood has written that “Odds favor Louisiana, because this is the right mailing format for the time - La.; JEH was very good about his capitalization and initials because I reviewed his handwritten notes on about a dozen documents confirming this (in Ryan Wood’s paper in the MUFON Symposium Proceedings 2001 at pages 132-133, i.e. pages 132-133 of 217 of PDF version):

Even William Moore (who, along with Charles Berlitz, had promoted the “Sw” or “LA” alternatives for the relevant annotation in their 1980 book “The Roswell Incident”) appears to have subsequently accepted that the letters are “La”. Five years later, in 1985, he wrote that the annotation “refers to Roswell even though Hoover uses the term ‘the La case’” (in William Moore’s paper “Crash Saucers: Evidence in search of proof” at pages 130-138 of MUFON Symposium Proceedings 1985, at page 163 (at page 169 of 184 of PDF version).



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:14 AM
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The focus of debate therefore appears to shifted several years from whether or not Hoover wrote “La” (which is now accepted by most researchers) to whether or not Hoover intended to refer to the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax.

One skeptic (Christopher D Allan) has written that “There can be no doubt whatever that Hoover was writing about the Shreveport disc” (in Christopher D Allan’s article entitled “Roswell Crash” by in IUR, May/June 1994 at page 13 – i.e. at page 61 of 144 of PDF version of volume 19).

However, not everyone has agreed with Christopher D Allan’s view that there is “no doubt” Hoover was writing about the Shreveport disc. The points that have been made by those querying suggestions that Hoover was merely referring to Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax include:

(a) querying whether Hoover would have cared about access to the obviously hoaxed Shreveport disc. For example, researcher Ryan Wood has asserted that “… logic dictates that JEH would not have bothered to make any comment on a known hoax or even consider using it as policy leverage with the Air Force” (in Ryan Wood’s paper in the MUFON Symposium Proceedings 2001 at pages 132-133, i.e. pages 132-133 of 217 of PDF version); and

(b) querying whether the FBI was in fact refused access to the hoaxed Shreveport disc. For example, well-known UFO researchers Kevin Randle and Don Schmitt wrote in the IUR journal (May/June 1994 issue, at pages 15-16): “Certainly a hoax occurred in Shreveport, Louisiana, in early July 1947. It could be the case to which Hoover refers ----Except that certain facts don't fit. For example, the Army didn't grab the bogus disc and refuse to let the FBI see it”. Similarly, as noted above, Charles Berlitz and William Moore wrote in their book “The Roswell Incident” (1980) that: “While Hoover's annotation above clearly indicates that he was referring to a crashed disc that ‘the Army grabbed... and would not let [the FBI] have’ for examination, the two [FBI] Louisiana memos referring to the Shreveport case plainly show that just the opposite was true and that the Army Air Force did indeed cooperate with the FBI on this case”. William Moore later wrote that: “… the FBI (according to their own files and those of AFOSI) was definitely involved — hence there was no need for Hoover to complain to the contrary. … Rather, it appears that Hoover committed a perfectly human error in confusing the [incidents] in his hastily scribbled addendum to the July 10th memo…” (in William Moore’s paper “Crash Saucers: Evidence in search of proof” at pages 130-138 of MUFON Symposium Proceedings 1985, at page 163 – i.e. at page 169 of 184 of the PDF version). Similarly, Nick Redfern has written that “… in no way did the Army deny the Bureau access to the disc; they had no need to. The records show that what was recovered at Shreveport was undoubtedly another hoax, and certainly not the sort of device that the Army would have grabbed” (in Nick Refern’s book “The FBI Files” at page 240 of the Pocket Books paperback edition).


In relation to claims that Hoover would not have been bothered about access to hoaxed discs, it is notable that the FBI files do indicate that (perhaps surprisingly to some) the FBI in fact DID want to follow up on clear hoaxes of flying discs. See for example:

(a) A document from 11 July 1947 relating to a Milwaukee office disc recovery (at page 7 of 79 in Part 2 of the 16 UFO files):





(b) A document from 12 July 1947 relating to follow up of the Milwaukee office disc recovery (at page 6 of 79 in Part 2 of the 16 UFO files):




(c) A document from 17 July 1947 relating to a Los Angeles disc recovery (at page 60 of 69 in Part 1 of the 16 UFO files):





What about the claims that the Army didn’t grab the hoaxed Shreveport disc or refuse to let the FBI see that disc? The dispute on this point is pretty stark. As noted above, prominent UFO researchers Kevin Randle and Don Schmitt wrote as a fact in 1994 that “… the Army didn't grab the bogus disc and refuse to let the FBI see it” (IUR journal, May/June 1994 issue at pages 15-16). On the other hand, Christopher D Allan has stated that “The FBI, in fact, was cut out of the investigation and effectively snubbed” (in Christopher D Allan’s article entitled “Roswell Crash” by in IUR, May/June 1994 at page 13 – i.e. at page 61 of 144 of PDF version of volume 19).



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:14 AM
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Determining the relevant facts on this issue requires an examination of both the FBI files and the Air Force files relevant to this incident.

Let’s start with the FBI files.

The FBI files include the document below dated 7 July 1947 in relation to the Shreveport Louisiana hoaxed disc (at page 4 of 79 in Part 2 of the 16 UFO files):


Notably, this memo dated 7 July 1947 indicates that the Shreveport disc was picked up by the Army (G-2) “immediately and they took disc before SA arrived”, which could have been read by Hoover as indicating that it was (in the words of Hoover’s controversial annotation about access to discs recovered) “grabbed” by the Army (although a comment later in this memo does indicate that the Army indicated that the disc could later be turned over to FBI “subject to superior instructions”).

Thus, the FBI files suggest that (rightly or wrongly) Hoover may have thought that the Army “grabbed” the hoaxed Shreveport (Louisiana) disc.

Christopher D Allan has commented that this July 7 memo “gives further evidence of the lack of FBI access to the prank disc. The Army took sole charge” (in Christopher D Allan’s article entitled “Roswell Crash” by in IUR, May/June 1994 at page 13 – i.e. at page 61 of 144 of PDF version of volume 19).

It is notable that Kevin Randle (one of the most prominent researchers that – as indicated above - previously questioned the identification of Hoover’s annotation as referring to the Shreveport, Louisiana hoax) appears to have accepted that Allan and other sceptics were correct. In an article on his blog in 2011, Kevin Randle wrote:


“I am of the opinion that Hoover wrote “La” and this refers to a case from Shreveport, ouisiana. …According to the documentation available, the FBI was alerted to the Shreveport case and FBI agents did interview one of the sources. The FBI memo on the case also said that the Army had taken the disc into their possession. This case seems to fit facts and it is an ‘La.’”



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:14 AM
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Let’s also have a look at the Army documents relating to the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax, which can be found in the Project Blue Book files.

High resolution copies of the Army documents can be found on the Fold3 website starting at the link below:
www.fold3.com...|9668997

For ease of reference, I’ll embed images of the relevant documents below:

Page 1 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9668997


Page 2 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9668998


Page 3 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9668999


Page 4 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9669000


Page 5 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9669001


Page 6 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9669002



Note that the above document indicates that the FBI had stated (or complained??) that the Army had taken “the disc in their possession”.


Page 7 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9669003


Page 8 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9669005


Page 9 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9669004


Page 10 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax:
www.fold3.com...|9669006



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:15 AM
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The redactions on the high resolution copies of the relevant documents are slightly irritating, since the removal of names of witnesses and others involved can make it harder to follow up various issues. Fortunately, (as I’ve mentioned before, but probably should highlight more often for various reasons) unredacted copies of these documents are available on the “bluebookarchive.org” website (at MAXW-PBB2-1048 onwards).

The unredacted documents indicate that the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax by admitted by Mr M H Swor (Superintendent of the Bar-Brok Manufacturing Company) as being a prank on his boss.

Here are images of the unredacted versions of these documents, without those pesky black marks that appear on the higher resolution images set out above:

Page 2 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax (unredacted):
www.bluebookarchive.org...





Page 4 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax (unredacted):
www.bluebookarchive.org...





Page 5 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax (unredacted):
www.bluebookarchive.org...





Page 6 of the Project Blue Book file on the Shreveport (Louisiana) hoax (unredacted):
www.bluebookarchive.org...




posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:15 AM
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Examining the unredacted documents to find the name of the Shreveport disc hoaxer (Mr M H Swor), it is possible to search for additional details of the hoax not mentioned in the numerous articles and books that discuss Hoover’s “discs recovered” annotation.

For example, it is possible to find an article entitled “Shreveport has stake in UFO legacies” dated 2 July 2007 from the The Shreveport Times,which gives Mr Swor’s first name as Murff. That article can be purchased at the link below, a snippet from which is given below:
pqasb.pqarchiver.com...



An expert machinist, the late Murff Swor, cobbled together some castoff electrical parts and an aluminum disc, hid on top of a building on then-thriving

Texas Avenue, and sent it sailing into rush-hour traffic when the light was fading right and the public appetite for the bizarre was growing.

"My father was a fantastic sheet-metal worker and had a sense of humor," sighed Jerry Swor, his then-17-year-old son, now 77 and living near Arlington, Texas. "It was during all the UFO sightings. He made this disc, it was round and about four inches thick in the middle, and tapered out. He welded a condenser on the top of it and two fluorescent lamp starters on each side and took an acetylene torch and streaked smoke trails behind each of the starters, so it would look like it was spinning."

If he wanted to start a panic, he came close.


A free Spanish translation of that article can be found on the Marcianitosverdes website, which can be translated into English using the Google Translate tool:
marcianitosverdes.haaan.com...

The Marcianitosverdes website has another informative page in Spanish relating to the Shreveport hoax at the link below:
marcianitosverdes.haaan.com...

Armed with the name of the hoaxer (Murff Swor) and his son (Jerry Swor), I did make an attempt to contact one of the hoaxer’s living relatives. I think I found Jerry Swor’s family tree at the link below:

familytreemaker.genealogy.com...

That family tree page names “CDR Jerry Glenn Swor” as being born on 10 March 1930 in LA. He married Mary Valeria Allen and had three children (Lisa Swor, Mary Swor, David Swor). I contacted one David Swor via Facebook to ask if he was related to Jerry Swor and Murff Swor, in case he was interested in this bit of his family history (and in case he had any further information/material relating to this hoax), but did not receive any reply.



Incidentally, the follow up to Hoover’s annotation is detailed in the memo dated 24 July 1947 referred to above (at page 38 of 69 in Part 1 of the 16 UFO files), in which it is indicated that the FBI was promised “complete cooperation” by the Army:


Following that promise of “complete cooperation”, the FBI issued Bureau Bulletin Number 42 (below) on 30th July 1947 (which can be found at page 47 of 69 in Part 1 of the 16 UFO files):


It is against the background of that promise that I find the material in the next section of this thread (“Part B2 : The toilet seat upset (1947)”) particularly amusing.


I don’t expect the above analysis of issues relating to Hoover’s “discs recovered” memo to stop various people putting forward that annotation out of context, but hopefully setting out this material should make it easier for anyone that actually wants to bother analysing relevant issues.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:15 AM
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Part B2 : The toilet seat upset (1947)



Out of all the UFO documents released by government agencies around the world, one of the most amusing sets of documents involves the FBI getting rather irritated at being used by the Army to look into cases that the Army did not want to waste time on. Perhaps you can image the reaction of someone like Hoover finding out this fact...

The relevant memos are set out below. They include:

(a) An FBI memo dated 8th August 1947 complaining about the Army taking credit for investigations of Japanese balloons in the past and how the FBI was now “merely playing bird-dog for the Army by using our manpower to run out these complaints on flying discs”.


(Document at Page 24 of 111 in Part 3 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)



(b) An Army Air Force memo dated 3 September 1947 from Colonel R H Smith (Assistant Chief of Staff Intelligence) candidly stating that “the services of the FBI were enlisted in order to relieve the numbered Air Forces of the task of tracking down all the many instances which turned out to be ash can covers, toilet seats and whatnot”.





(c) The candid Army Air Force memo plainly was not intended by Colonel Smith to be seen by the FBI. Unfortunately for the Army Air Force, a copy was given to an FBI official and attached to a memo dated 19 September 1947 to Assistant Director D M Ladd which noted the “entirely uncalled for language tending to indicate the Bureau will be asked to conduct investigations only in those cases which are not important and which are almost, in fact, ridiculous”.


(Document at Page 3 of 77 in Part 4 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)


(d) FBI Assistant Director D M Ladd promptly wrote a memo dated 25 September 1947 to FBI Director J Edgar Hoover which summarised, and attached, the Army Air Force a memo dated 23 September 1947 from Colonel R H Smith (Assistant Chief of Staff Intelligence). Mr Ladd, not surprisingly, recommended that the FBI “protest vigorously” and that the FBI discontinue all activity in this field.


(Document at pages 20-21 of 77 in Part 4 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)



(e) Predictably, FBI Director J Edgar Hoover wrote to Major General McDonald on 27 September 1947 informing him that the FBI would be discontinuing all investigative activity regarding the reported sightings of flying discs, mentioning the “ash can covers, toilet seats and whatnot” comment in the memo from Colonel R H Smith (Assistant Chief of Staff Intelligence).


(Document at page 19 of 77 pages in Part 4 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:15 AM
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Part B3 : The Guy Hottel memo (1950)

I have previously devoted a fairly long and detailed thread to the memo by Special Agent Guy Hottel dated 22 March 1950 about recovery of flying saucers in New Mexico, a copy of which is shown below.

(Document at page 34 of 66 in Part 8 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)


The Guy Hottel memo includes the following:



“The following information was furnished to SA …… by …, …. … . …

An investigator for the Air Forces stated that three so-called flying saucers had been recovered in New Mexico. They were described as being circular in shape with raised centers, approximately 50 feet in diameter. Each one was occupied by three bodies of human shape but only 3 feet tall, dressed in metallic cloth of a very fine texture. Each body was bandaged in a manner similar to the blackout suits used by speed flying and test pilots.

According to Mr … informant, the saucers were found in New Mexico due to the fact that the Government has a very high-powered radar set-up in that area and it is believed the radar interferes with the controlling mechanism of the saucers.

No further evaluation was attempted by SA … concerning the above”.


I will not repeat all my previous (long) thread about this memo, which can be read at the link below:
Debunked! The FBI alien bodies memo – A case study in the reinvention of the wheel

However, I’ll just quickly mention the basic points I make in that long thread:

(1) The memo is NOT a new release

(2) The memo relates to a HOAX exposed DECADES ago by a convicted con-man - Silas Newton.

(3) The memo does NOT relate to Roswell


As noted in my earlier thread at the link above, in 1985 (yes, over 25 years ago!), William Moore wrote that Hottel’s memo “has been cited out of context again and again by an entire array of UFO researchers as conclusive evidence that the U.S. government is in possession of a crashed saucer. Had any of them bothered to research the matter before jumping to conclusions, they would have realized the memo is essentially useless in that the origin of the information cited therein can be traced directly to Silas M. Newton himself”.



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:16 AM
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Part B4 : Were UFOs a secret military project?

The early FBI memos (as with official documents from other agencies) indicate a concern that time was being wasted investigating a secret military project.

That concern led the Army Air Force to repeatedly assure the FBI in 1947 that reports of flying discs were not being caused by any research project.

In Part B1 above, I posted both pages of a memo from Fitch to Assistant Director D M Ladd dated 10 July 1947 which Hoover annotated with a reference to recovered discs. While most discussions of that memo have focused on Hoover’s annotation, it is worth noting that the main body of the memo states that General Schulgen gave an assurance that “there are no War Department or Navy Department research projects presently being conducted which could in any way be tied up with the flying disks”.

For ease of reference, I’ll embed the first page of that memo below again:


Similarly, Brigadier General Schulgen stated in a letter to the Director of the FBI dated 5th September 1947 that “the Army Air Force has no project with the characteristic similar to those which have been associated with the Flying Discs”.


(Document at page 29 of 111 in Part 3 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)

Subsequent speculation in the decades since 1947 that secret aircraft projects are the stimulus for a significant number of UFO reports need to address the 1947 denials to the FBI of any such cause for the sightings.

However, it is notable that Hoover himself appears to have remained attracted by suggestions that UFO reports were caused by some sort of secret project.

For example, the 1949 memo below from Hoover stated “for your confidential information” that “a reliable and confidential source has advised the Bureau that flying discs are believed to be man-made missiles rather than natural phenomenon. It has also been determined that for approximately the past four years the USSR has been engaged in experimentation on an unknown type of flying disc”:


(Document at Page 57 of 129 in Part 6 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files. It refers to the Air Force memorandum at page 47 of 129)

Other documents from 1949 shed some light on this controversial belief.

A document dated 24 January 1949 indicates that Hoover’s “reliable and confidential” source was a Colonel at Air Materiel Command. Notably, the first page stated that “he knew nothing of an official nature concerning ‘flying discs’”, other than the (alleged) “fact that they are believed by Air Force Intelligence officials to be man-made missiles, rather than some natural phenomena”. The second page states that “some recent reports have been received from representatives of the Central Intelligence Agency in Southern Europe and Southern Asia to the effect that the Russians were experimenting with some type of radical aircraft or guided missile which could be dispatched for great distance out over the sea, made to turn in flight and return to the base from which it was launched”:


(Document at page 69 of 129 in Part 6 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)


(Document at page 70 of 129 in Part 6 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)

A further document dated 14 March 1949 also referred to the information from this Colonel at Air Materiel Command:


(Document at page 60 of 129 in Part 6 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:16 AM
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Part B5 : The Air Force and Men In Black

FBI documents show that the FBI was aware (and considered “peculiar”) secretive Army Air Force investigations of UFO reports. See, for example, the memo below dated 4 September 1947:




(Document at page 34 of 111 in Part 3 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)

This incident came up again in documents in 1952:





(Documents at pages 62-67 of Part 9 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)

Secretive investigations have become a part of many UFO conspiracy theories, including theories relating to “Men In Black”.

I wonder if the reluctance of Army Air Force investigators to indicate their involvement in some UFO investigations may have contributed to the Men In Black stories and the very early emergence of stories (both fictional and in UFO reports) relating to undercover investigations of UFO reports?

See, for example, the movie “The Flying Saucer” (1950) at the link below in which the CIA sent playboy Mike Trent to Alaska to investigate flying saucer sightings:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=-DEQ-a0C7U0



posted on Feb, 6 2013 @ 09:16 AM
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Part B6 : Air Force “greatly concerned” memo (1952)

The emergence of various conspiracy theories relating to UFOs may also have been assisted by inconsistencies between the views expressed publically by the Air Force and the views held by at least some Air Force officials.

For example, the FBI memo below dated 18 August 1952 records that a Captain in the Air Force’s OSI (Office of Special Investigation) had requested that the FBI provide any information concerning sightings of flying discs immediately to his office, “day or night”.

That Captain reportedly stated to the FBI that “the Air Force is greatly concerned” about flying discs.


(at page 61 of 142 in Part 12 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)



Any such view was, of course, hardly reflected in the public statements made by the Air Force so any UFO researchers hearing of such views may have (understandably) wondered why he was hearing a view apparently inconsistent with the Air Force’s public statements.

The memo below dated 29 July 1952 gives details of an Air Force briefing to the FBI as to the Air Force’s views at that time, arguably indicating again some divergence between the Air Force’s public statements and the views being expressed privately to the FBI. In particular, the memo begins by noting that the Air Force had “failed to arrive at any satisfactory conclusion” and states on the second page that “… it is not entirely impossible that the objects sighted may possibly be ships from another planet such as Mars” and that “intense research is being carried on presently by Air Intelligence”.


(Document at page 53 of 67 of Part 9 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)



(Document at page 54 of 67 of Part 9 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)



(Document at page 55 of 67 of Part 9 of the FBI’s 16 UFO files)



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