6.5 Military Aircraft Encounter - 1951

On February 9, 1951, United States Navy Flight 125 departed from Keflavik, Iceland en route to the Naval Air Station in Argentia, Newfoundland. The co-pilot was U.S. Naval Reserve Lieutenant Graham E. Bethune, a Disclosure Project witness who served 26 years on active duty. Lt. Bethune, who was stationed in Maryland at the time, was one of three officers suggested to fly to Keflavik for a classified meeting between Lockheed and the Icelandic government. The Icelanders had asked for American troops to protect them, stating they had been seeing unidentified craft off the coasts of Iceland. Lt. Bethune assumed they were observing classified, experimental craft. However, his opinion changed while on board Navy Flight 125.

Just after midnight, at 0055 on February 10, 1951, Lt. Bethune and his crew had an encounter with an unknown object. The following report is in Lt. Bethune’s own words:

I was the pilot from Iceland to Newfoundland. 240 miles out I saw something on the water 40 miles away. Moonset had occurred an hour previous. Nothing was scheduled to be in that area. I called it to attention of my navigator and co-pilot. It looked like a city in the distance. There was a pattern to the lights on the water — an odd pattern. I thought it was a classified rescue mission. 20 miles out, the lights went out. A yellow halo appeared on the water. It flew towards us, some 20 miles, at approximately 1,000 miles per hour. It stopped 200 ft below us. I observed a faint dome shape to it. I had a knowing that it was intelligently controlled — it came over to look at us. The object stayed about five miles away, at about a 45N an angle. It flew with us, looking at us. I estimated its size at 300 feet in diameter. My plane had no guns. The on-board magnetic compass did spin. We had 31 passengers on board, including a Navy commander [and] a psychiatrist. I went back and spoke to the psychiatrist and asked him if he had observed anything unusual. The commander said he saw what we saw. The psychiatrist said, "Yes, it was a flying saucer and I didn’t look at it because such things don’t exist."

I told my crew not to report it. But it was picked up on Gander radar. We were interrogated in Iceland. It was obvious from the questions and demeanor of the US Navy men who debriefed us that they’d seen things out there before. A report on this event was kept at Wright-Patterson AFB. I found it in 1991, in the archives. I have the report, along with letters from NICAP, Keyhoe’s report to congress, and photos of the plane I was in. All five pilots described it the UFO the same — its size; the aura around it. A lieutenant who was on duty the night we were interrogated was told they tracked it by radar in excess of 1,800 mph. No radar report was included in the 17-page report — it was missing from the report when I finally found the report in 1991. Radar was confirmed at the time. I estimated the speed of the object at 1,000 mph. The other pilots estimated 1,000 - 1,500 mph. The fastest fighter we had at time could go 500 mph. There were no jets at the time — in February 1951.

This object was not a shooting star. It was always between the plane and the water. We had extensive recognition training then. We didn’t have the instrumentation assists that we have today. We navigated by stars. We had about a 54th of a second to identify something while we were flying in a moving plane. We are the ones who gave the information to the astrophysicists since we were the ones up there. We had many sightings but this is the one that we have documentation for.

Upon landing in Argentia, Newfoundland, Lt. Bethune and his crew were interrogated by Naval officers about the incident. In Lt. Bethune’s official, confidential report filed at the Fleet Logistic Air Wing, Atlantic/Continental, Air Transport Squadron One, U.S. Naval Air Station, Patuxent River, Maryland, dated February 10, 1951, he gave additional details: The object was first seen when the aircraft was at least 250 miles off the coast of Iceland. Bethune and the co-pilot kept the object under observance for four to five minutes before calling it to the attention of the rest of the crew. When the object lifted and rushed towards them at an estimated 1,000 miles per hour, Lt. Bethune’s first feeling was that the Navy plane would collide with the UFO in mid-air. When it approached the plane, its shape was clearly discernable to be that of a disc, at least 300 feet in diameter. Its color changed from yellow to reddish-orange. When it reversed course and flew away from the aircraft to vanish over the horizon, its speed tripled.

The other members of the Flight 125 crew submitted written reports as well. Lt. Fred W. Kingdon, serving as second Plane Commander, stated, "I was an eye witness to an unusual sighting of an unidentified object." Lt. Kingdon was in the right-hand seat (co-pilot) while Lt. Bethune was in the left-hand seat. When the UFO rose from the surface of the water and sped towards the plane, Lt. Kingdon described it as "very large and was circular with a glowing yellow-orange ring around its outer edge." Although the object was very close, it was difficult to determine its exact speed and configuration since it was observed over water at night. "However, the speed was tremendous and the size was at least 200 to 300 feet in diameter. The object was close enough to me to see and observe it clearly," Kingdon reported.

Plane Commander LTJG A. L. Jones was in the cabin of the plane when one of the navigators came aft and pointed to the object. He stated:

I watched it for a minute and went forward to the cockpit to get a better view. Upon reaching the cockpit, I took the plane off of the autopilot and turned to a true heading of 290N in pursuit of the object. The object left on a heading of about 290N true and went over the horizon in a very short time. I would guess the speed to be well over 1500 miles per hour, and the diameter to be at least 300 feet. My first view of it resembled a huge fiery orange disc on its edge...When it went over the horizon, it seemed to go from a vertical position to a horizontal position, with only the trailing edge showing in a half-moon effect.

The plane’s navigator, Lt. Noel J. P. Koger, remarked in his report:

Lieutenant Kingdon pointed out an orange colored object about 060N relative, or 290N true, saying it appeared like a small village or a ship. Due to our position, I was certain it wasn’t a village. I had been looking at the object about thirty seconds, which it appeared to me was another demonstration of the ‘northern lights’ phenomenon...when the object suddenly started getting much brighter, taking on shape and coming in our direction at a great rate of speed... The best view I had of the object showed it to be a circular, bright orange-red disc, which was approaching us at a very great, undeterminable speed.

The Air Intelligence Information Report prepared for this encounter summarizes the observances of the crew members, stating that Lt. Bethune was the first to see the object. The report states that all five crew members were experienced North Atlantic fliers and that all five observers agreed on the facts as stated.

For additional details, please see the official government documents regarding this incident, which the Disclosure Project obtained through a FOIA request. These are found in Appendix I (Document A1.4).

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6.6 The Summer of 1952: UFOs Over Many Areas Including Washington, D.C.

One of the most frequent rhetorical questions posed about UFOs is: if they are real, why don’t they just land on the White House lawn? Actually, they came pretty close to doing just that on two consecutive weekends in July of 1952.

The summer of 1952 was one of the most prolific for reported sightings of UFOs. There had been a significant number of reports flowing in all along the Eastern seaboard and from the Midwestern states for weeks. Intelligence officers grew increasingly more uneasy over the sharp rise in sightings. Of special concern was that many of these statements were coming from civilians. Prior to that fateful summer, most sightings had come from military personnel and had been kept from the public. But now the citizens themselves, including commercial airline pilots had become sources of information:

From the ground:

UFOs Buzz the White House:

At ll:40 pm on July 19, 1952, dual radar stations at Washington National Airport picked up seven objects east and south of Andrews Air Force Base. Andrews also picked up the targets on their radar. Conventional aircraft were quickly ruled out as the cause; these targets would fly at 100-130 mph, suddenly accelerate to extremely high speeds and leave the area. One object was clocked at 7,200 miles per hour. Reportedly, the objects appeared in every sector of the radarscopes, including flying through restricted air space over the White House and Capitol building. The objects returned several times throughout the night and were also seen by airline pilots (at midnight and 2:00 a.m.), air traffic control tower operators, and jet fighter pilots who were dispatched from Andrews.

Edward Ruppelt wrote:

But the clincher came in the wee hours of the morning, when an ARTC traffic controller called the control tower at Andrews AFB and told the tower operators that ARTC had a target just south of their tower, directly over the Andrews Radio range station. The tower operators looked and there was a ‘huge fiery-orange sphere’ hovering in the sky directly over their range station.

Apparently, Air Force Intelligence was not informed about the events until they, along with everyone else in the area, read the newspaper headlines the next morning: INTERCEPTORS CHASE FLYING SAUCERS OVER WASHINGTON, D.C. Even a major at the Pentagon stated to Project Blue Book investigator Edward Ruppelt that all he knew about the events was what he’d read in the newspaper. A full investigation ensued immediately under the supervision of said major — Dewey Fournet. The air traffic controllers at Washington National told intelligence officers that the targets they observed were caused by radar waves bouncing off a hard, solid object — these were not temperature inversions. The radar operator Air Forceman at Andrews and the two veteran airline pilots concurred.

Second Washington Flap:

Serendipitously, the second wave of sightings over Washington occurred seven days later, nearly to the hour. Those seven intervening days had been far from quiet; UFO reports were flowing into Wright Field in Dayton, Ohio at the rate of thirty to forty per day — triple the previous numbers. Edward Ruppelt claims that "many were as good, if not better, than the Washington incident." The most outstandingly unexplained of those reports included amber-red lights observed over the Guided Missile Long-Range Proving Ground at Patrick Air Force Base, Florida; a rapidly moving large, round, silver spinning object in Uvalde, Texas; and military jets unsuccessfully chasing UFOs over Los Alamos, New Mexico; Massachusetts (two events), and New Jersey.

A stunning prelude was the forerunner to the second wave over Washington. In the early evening of July 26, a saucer-shaped vehicle flashing red light winked in over the Naval Air Station in Key West, Florida, reportedly seen by hundreds. The events then speed up the Eastern Seaboard, focusing again on the nation’s capitol. There, beginning around 9:00 p.m., Washington area radar operators were once more picking up ‘bogies’ similar to the previous weekend’s mayhem. Within an hour, four or five UFOs at once were a continuous presence on the radar screens. Military jets were dispatched and commercial airlines were rerouted. According to Ruppelt, the press who had gathered at the control tower at Washington National were asked to leave. He wrote:

When I later found out that the press had been dismissed on the grounds that the procedures used in an intercept were classified, I knew that this was absurd because any ham radio operator worth his salt could build equipment and listen in on any intercept. The real reason for the press dismissal, I learned, was not that a few people in the radar room were positive that this night would be the big night in UFO history--the night when a pilot would close in on and get a good look at a UFO--and they didn’t want the press to be in on it.

However, the extraterrestrial UFO pilots had other ideas. As soon as the F-94 jets were airborne, around midnight, the UFOs all vanished from the radar scopes. The pilots could make no visual contact despite good visibility and weather. However, it was later learned that Langley AFB and civilians in the area had visuals on colored, rotating lights in the sky. But — surprise! — as soon as the military jets left the area, the UFOs popped back up on the Washington radar screens once more. One F-94 pilot who did see a light and was vectored to it by air traffic control reported that it went out as soon as he got near, "like somebody turning off a lightbulb." Brief radar lock-ons were obtained by the pilot.

The UFOs continued to play games with the F-94s, staying put while they approached, then speeding away or vanishing. The UFOs played "catch me if you can" until the jets had nearly depleted their fuel, which coincided with the approaching sunrise. Once it got light, the UFOs had gone for good. Once more, the radar operators confirmed that they believed the targets were caused by solid, metallic, moving objects and were not due to any weather aberrations. And, once more, newspaper headlines were devoted to the UFOs. In the Pentagon, it was mass confusion, bolstered by the fact that new UFO reports were flowing in which verified visual sightings in the same areas where the radar targets had been located. This did little to support the Pentagon’s working hypothesis that freakish weather conditions had caused the radar bogies. And, prior to the Washington flap, very few reports indicated both radar and visual lock-on.

By now, there was tremendous pressure to tell the public something. Rather lame excuses by the military did nothing to stem the tide of outcry flowing into the Pentagon, additionally fueled by more significant sighting reports coming in from coast to coast and by the creeping suspicion that the Russians were perhaps involved. According to researcher Donald Keyhoe, Director of Air Force Intelligence, Major General John A. Samford grappled with several false explanations which the Pentagon hoped would dowse the escalating agitation of John and Jane Q. Public. Calmly and glibly explaining the saucers away as various quirky natural phenomena, while admitting that "twenty percent" of the cases remained unsolved, the General went on to state that no pattern had remotely been revealed that indicated any threat or menace to the United States. The spin to debunk the existence of extraterrestrial spacecraft and visitors was printed by newspapers all over the country. According to Donald Keyhoe, just as the presses were rolling out this yarn, the Air Force had jets chasing saucers over the Midwestern states. Keyhoe stated, "[O]ne case, if it had been made public that night, would have ruined the inversion answer and wrecked the debunking plan. But I didn’t learn this until weeks later." Yet, the denial --and ridicule--of all UFO cases continues to the present day.

Within the Disclosure Project is a living military - Air Force - witness to the overflights of our nation’s Capitol. And the Disclosure Project’s Best Available Evidence briefing video (from 1997), for educational, noncommercial purposes, contains a color photograph of a formation of UFOs flying low directly over the White House.

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6.7 Air Command Base Overflights

While 1975 is considered the "banner year" for unidentified flying objects appearing over Strategic Air Command bases, significant incidents occurred much earlier.

A Disclosure Project witness supplied the following report:

I am 49 years old, a college graduate, a disabled vet, and served in the United States Air Force from 1964 to 1974. In 1967, I had two direct observations of foreign technology and heard of at least two related incidents.

The first direct observation of ETV ("extraterrestrial vehicle") occurred November 1967 en route to a Minuteman I site for repairs at 2200 hours in North Dakota (Minot AFB). There were three staff in our vehicle, two Ballistic Missile Analysts, myself and my assistant, an armed security policeman. The guard made a comment to the effect that it was "awfully quiet out here." I decided to check the four channels on our radio when we heard, "I am going to shoot at it, sir. It’s about 300 feet above the site!"

We immediately went into a duress condition, which calls for all personnel to respond to the assistance of the crew under duress. The entire episode took maybe 2-3 minutes. We were able to hear the Launch Control Combat Crew Commander ordering the two security guards at a nearby site to NOT shoot at the ETV. We headed in the direction of the site and observed a large, bright object with blinking red/green/blue lights at about 10-12 miles. The object began to rise as radio transmissions were flying back and forth. It rose and accelerated straight up at extremely high speed and disappeared as F-102’s and/or F-106 interceptors flew overhead.

The two security guards were guarding the site (sites are unmanned) due to security systems failure and were awaiting a maintenance team to repair. This could take up to 3-4 days depending if it was a weekend. At the height of the incident, up to six other security police were at or near the site in three vehicles (strike teams) in response to the duress codes.

One of the guards (the one that was gong to shoot at the ETV) went on a maintenance trip later that week with my crew and after prodding from me for 30-40 minutes gave me details of their ordeal and their debriefing. The two guards were debriefed by Dr. J. Allen Hynek and other staff not from Minot AFB. Dr. Hynek made the comment "this craft has been observed before." According to the guard, he and his team member were ordered by a USAF colonel to not discuss what had happened or they would be sent to Viet Nam immediately. They were both scared to death.

The second incident occurred several weeks later when, while light snow was falling and a low ceiling was observed by me shortly before nightfall, a guard made a comment about the "strange moon" in the sky.

Directly overhead of where we were repairing a Minuteman site was a moon-sized object, same color as the moon BELOW the cloud cover. I immediately called the Launch Control Facility (LFC) 8-10 miles away to report the "Moon." The security staff said they had the object under observation and had reported it to the Wing Security Control (WSC) at Minot Air Force Base.

As I watched the object and talked to the LCF, the object slowly retreated through the clouds and disappeared. I have info on several other incidents — two credible — at Minot AFB, North Dakota and others at Duluth AFB, Minnesota.

The 1970s

Malmstrom Air Force Base, Montana

The Senior Director of the 24th NORAD Region, Col. Terrence C. James, submitted a written report of multiple overflights of Malmstrom AFB on multiple dates in November 1975, from which we quote:

  • 7 Nov 75 (1035Z) - Received a call from the 341st Strategic Air Command Post (SAC CP), saying that the following missile locations reported seeing a large red to orange to yellow object: M-1, L-3, LIMA and L-6. The general object location would be 10 miles south of Moore, Montana, and 20 miles east of Buffalo, Montana. Commander and Deputy for Operations (DO) informed.

  • 7 Nov 75 (1203Z) - SAC advised that the LCF at Harlowton, Montana, observed an object which emitted a light which illuminated the site driveway.

  • 7 Nov 75 (1319Z) - SAC advised K-1 says very bright object to their east is now southeast of them and they are looking at it with 10x50 binoculars. Object seems to have lights (several) on it, but no distinct pattern. The orange/ gold object overhead also has small lights on it. SAC also advises female civilian reports having seen an object bearing south from her position six miles west of Lewistown.

  • 7 Nov 75 (1327Z) - L-1 reports that the object to their northeast seems to be issuing a black object from it, tubular in shape. In all of this time, surveillance has not been able to detect any sort of track except for known traffic. (emphasis added)

  • 7 Nov 75 (1355Z) - K-1 and L-1 report that as the sun rises, so do the objects they have visual.

  • 7 Nov 75 (1429Z) - From SAC CP: As the sun rose, the UFOs disappeared. Commander and DO notified.

  • 8 Nov 75 (0635Z) - A security camper team at K-4 reported UFO with white lights, one red light 50 yards behind white light. Personnel at K-1 seeing same object.

  • 8 Nov 75 (0753Z) - J330 unknown 0753. Stationary/seven knots/12,000. One (varies seven objects). None, no possibility, EKLB 3746, two F-106, GTF, SCR 0754. NCOC notified.

  • [Note that fighter jets were scrambled to intercept - ed.]

  • 8 Nov 75 (0820Z) - Lost radar contact, fighters broken off at 0825, looking in area of J331 (another height finder contact).

  • [Note that fighters did have radar contact with the UFOs.]

  • 8 Nov 75 (0905Z) - From SAC CP: L-sites had fighters and objects; fighters did not get down to objects.

  • [Note: L-sites are Minuteman ICBM missile launch sites.]

  • 8 Nov 75 (0915Z) - From SAC CP: From four different points: Observed objects and fighters; when fighters arrived in the area, the lights went out; when fighters departed, the lights came back on; to NCOC.

  • 8 Nov 75 (0953Z) - From SAC CP: L-5 reported object increased in speed - high velocity, raised in altitude and now cannot tell the object from the stars. To NCOC.

  • 8 Nov 75 (0305Z) - SAC CP called and advised SAC crews at Sites L-1, L-6 and M-1 observing UFO. Object yellowish bright round light 20 miles north of Harlowton, 2 to 4,000 feet.

  • 9 Nov 75 (0320Z) - SAC CP reports UFO 20 miles southeast of Lewiston, orange white disc object. 24th NORAD Region surveillance checking area. Surveillance unable to get height check.

  • 9 Nov 75 (0320Z) - FAA Watch Supervisor reported he had five air carriers vicinity of UFO, United Flight 157 reported seeing meteor, "arc welder’s blue" in color. SAC CP advised, sites still report seeing object stationary.

  • 9 Nov 75 (0348Z) - SAC CP confirms L-1, sees object, a mobile security team has been directed to get closer and report.

  • 9 Nov 75 (0629Z) - SAC CP advises UFO sighting reported around 0305Z. Cancelled the flight security team from Site L-1, checked area and all secure, no more sightings.

  • 10 Nov 75 (0125Z) - Received a call from SAC CP. Report UFO sighting from site K-1 around Harlowton area. Surveillance checking area with height finder.

  • 10 Nov 75 (0153Z) - Surveillance report unable to locate track that would correlate with UFO sighted by K-1.

  • 10 Nov 75 (1125Z) - UFO sighting reported by Minot Air Force Station, a bright star-like object in the west, moving east, about the size of a car. First seen approximately 1015Z. Approximately 1120Z, the object passed over the radar station, 1,000 feet to 2,000 feet high, no noise heard. Three people from the site or local area saw the object. NCOC notified. [emphasis added]

  • 12 Nov 75 (0230Z) - UFO reported from K-1. They say the object is over Big Snowy Mountain with a red light on it at high altitude. Attempting to get radar on it from Opheim. Opheim searching from 120N to 140N.

  • 12 Nov 75 (0248Z) - Second UFO in same area reported. Appeared to be sending a beam of light to the ground intermittently. At 0250Z object disappeared. [emphasis added]

  • 12 Nov 75 (0251Z) - Reported that both objects have disappeared. Never had any joy (contact) on radar.

  • Note: After a week’s time, another incident was reported.

  • 19 Nov 75 (13272Z) - SAC command post report UFO observed by FSC & a cook, observed object travelling NE between M-8 and M-1 at a fast rate of speed. Object bright white light seen 45 to 50 sec following terrain 200 ft off ground. The light was two to three times brighter than landing light on a jet.

  • Extracts from a NORAD Command Director’s Log from the fall of 1975 (see attached) chronicles a long list of sightings at a number of other SAC and Air Force bases:

    29 Oct 75 - An "unknown helicopter" landed in the munitions storage area at Loring Air Force Base in Maine two nights in a row. There is mention of an unconfirmed report of Canadian air bases being overflown by a "helicopter." Loring AFB turned in another report of a ‘probable helicopter overflight’ on November 1 as well.

    31 Oct 75 - Wurtsmith Air Force Base (Michigan) reported a "helicopter" hovering over a SAC weapons storage area. A tanker plane had visual lock-on and radar "skin paint" and was able to track the object over Lake Huron.

    8 Nov 75 - This entry details the first of the "unknowns" flying above Malstrom AFB and vicinity in Montana, stating that pilots had visual and radar lock-ons. The UFOs eluded the fighter jets by turning off their lights when the jets were bearing towards them, then turning them back on when the F-106’s left.

    10 Nov 75 - A bright, silent object the size of an automobile buzzed Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota.

    12 - 25 Nov 75 - Civilians call in reports from Minnesota, Virginia, Ontario and Mendicino County, California of many diverse types of UFOs, including cigar-shaped craft, diamond-shaped objects, cup in a bowl-shaped, rotating lights, balls of light, ovals with blinking lights, and fireballs.

    By the mid 1980’s (date estimated) the Directory of Databases described the NORAD Unknown Tracking System, classified Secret, as containing 7,000 incidents of unknown traffic over or near North America since the database was started in 1971.

    New Mexico

    The National Military Command Center in Washington, D.C. issued a report dated 21 January 1976 with information from the Air Force Operations Center regarding an incident over Cannon Air Force Base in New Mexico:

    Two UFOS are reported near the flight line at Cannon AFB, New Mexico. Security Police observing them reported the UFOs to be 25 yards in diameter, gold or silver in color with blue light on top, hole in the middle and red light on bottom. Air Force is checking with radar. Additionally, checking weather inversion data.


    The National Military Command Center issued another report, dated 30 July 1976, detailing several reports of UFOs around Fort Ritchie, Maryland in the wee hours of July 30th. After civilians called in sightings reports, two separate military police patrols described observing three reddish, oblong cylinders hovering very low (100-200 feet) over an ammunitions storage site. Independently, an Army police sergeant reported seeing a UFO over the same site while he was driving to work approximately 50 minutes after the report by the two patrols. Interestingly, the final paragraph of this report attempted to explain away the sightings as moisture-saturated temperature inversions.

    Taken as a whole, the myriad of reports detailed here make an irrefutable case for United States military involvement in reporting UFOs. It is apparent from these reports, which are certainly not all-inclusive, that the U.S. military did indeed have an interest in UFOs and certainly investigated sightings well after the conclusion of Project Blue Book in 1969, which supposedly closed the door on the military’s interest in the subject of extraterrestrials and their space craft.

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    6.8 Military Chase Over Iran - 1976

    The distinction for the best government documentation of a UFO event falls to the remarkable events that occurred in and above Tehran, Iran in September of 1976. The official U.S. government documents following this narrative were distributed at the time of its writing by the Defense Attaché at the United States Embassy in Tehran to the Defense Intelligence Agency, the White House, the CIA, the National Security Agency, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Secretary of the Air Force, the Secretary of Defense, and the Secretary of State.

    At half-past midnight on September 19, 1976, the Imperial Iranian Air Force received telephone calls from residents in the Shemiran area of Tehran. The citizens reported "strange objects in the sky," some calling them bird-like and others referring to them as lighted helicopters. The command post knew there were no airborne helicopters at the time and told the citizens they were seeing stars in the sky. The command post checked with Memrabad Tower. Then, looking for himself, observed a large, bright star-like object. At 1:30 a.m., an F-4 jet was scrambled from Shahrokhi Air Force Base and sent up to investigate.

    F-4s are Scrambled:

    The pilot reported that the object was so bright, it was easily visible from 70 miles away, which would place it approximately 40 miles north of Tehran. The IIAF pilot pursued the unusual craft. At 25 nautical miles from the unknown object, the pilot suddenly lost all UHF and intercom communications and instrumentation. When the pilot turned back towards Shahrokhi AFB, away from the UFO, he just as suddenly regained communication capabilities. Due to the strangeness of the unfolding events, a second F-4 was dispatched. The backseat pilot obtained radar lock-on with the UFO at 27 nautical miles distance. When the F-4 got within 25 miles of the object, the UFO increased its speed and moved away, pacing itself to maintain a sustained 25-mile distance from the jet.

    Colored Lights Observed on the UFO:

    The official government reports follow this narrative. Written by Col. Frank B. McKenzie, United States Air Force, it states that the F-4 pilots compared the size of the object on radar to a 707 tanker, stating that a visual size estimate was difficult to the extreme brilliance of the UFO. However, the pilots were able to describe flashing, rectangular strobe lights in blue, green, red and orange. The sequence of the strobing lights was so rapid that all four colors could be seen at once, according to the report.

    Objects Within Objects:

    The incident grew even more strange as it continued. As the F-4 pursued the UFO south of Tehran, a second object ejected from the primary target. It was brilliantly lit and was estimated to be one-half to one-third the size of the moon. The second object zoomed towards the F-4. At this point, the F-4 pilot attempted to fire an AIM-9 missile at the UFO. Instantly, his weapons control panel lost all power, and communication capabilities were down once more. The pilot made an extreme evasive negative G dive to escape the UFO. As he did so, the UFO trailed the F-4 at an estimated distance of three to four nautical miles. As the pilot turned the jet, the secondary object appeared on the inside of his turn. It then returned to the primary UFO, rejoining perfectly with it. Almost immediately thereafter, another object ejected out the opposite side of the primary UFO. It fell towards the ground at a tremendous rate of speed. By now, the F-4’s communications and weapons systems were once again functioning normally.

    The UFO Lands:

    The F-4 crew watched the nose-diving UFO in anticipation of seeing a huge crash and explosion. Much to their astonishment, the UFO appeared to come to rest gently on the ground with no impact whatsoever. Moreover, it cast an extremely bright light extending over a two to three kilometer range (well over one mile).

    More Radio Interference:

    The Iranian F-4 began to descend, while the crew continued to observe the landed UFO and mark its location. It took several attempts before they could land the fighter jet. Each time they passed through a certain magnetic bearing, the aircraft lost communications and the on-board instrumentation fluctuated dramatically. Moreover, a civilian aircraft in the vicinity also reported communication failure but reported no visual contact with the UFO. During the F-4’s final approach into Shahrokhi, the IIAF crew observed another object - this one cylindrical with bright steady lights on either end and a flashing light in the center. The control tower reported no other known air traffic in the area. The tower was able to get a visual lock-on when the pilots told them in which area to look as the cylinder-like UFO passed over the F-4.

    Follow-up Investigation:

    The following day, the F-4 crew was taken by helicopter to the area where they had tracked the landed UFO. The spot turned out to be a dry lakebed. Instrumentation aboard the helicopter registered a strong beeping signal over and around the lakebed. The strongest signal came from the area of a small house. The helicopter landed and the residents were questioned by military personnel about events of the previous night. The family members said they heard a loud noise and saw a very bright light, similar to lightning. Further investigation was apparently done to determine possible radiation residue. We have found no documentation of the results of the radiation testing and other post-event investigation, although it should be noted that this event was confirmed by satellite. The satellite tracking numbers can be obtained from Mr. Tony Craddock of the Disclosure Project.

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    6.9 RAF/USAF Bentwaters - Woodbridge - December 1980

    One of the most important close encounters ever reported by the military, with documentation obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, is the multiple-witness events which occurred at a joint British/American NATO air base in England. The release to American researchers of the memorandum detailing the eye witness account of Lt. Col. Charles E. Halt (later promoted to Colonel), deputy commander of the base, gave tremendous credence to the investigative reports done at the time of the incident. It is important to note this Halt memorandum states that the initial event occurred "Early on the morning of 27 Dec 80 (approximately 0300L)." In September, 1994, one of the security men present at the encounter, Staff Sargent James Penniston underwent voluntary hypnosis about the event. He stated that though during hypnosis by government agents a few days after the event he was told that the stories from the witnesses would be the same, but would have different dates. This may explain why the dates in different reports are confusing. It is generally accepted that the initial event occurred early in the morning hours of December 26, 1980.

    RAF/USAF Woodbridge is located eight miles east of Ipswich, Suffolk in England, and is one-half of the twin bases whose other half is the RAF Bentwaters NATO Air Base. All of the main buildings and quarters were at Bentwaters, although Woodbridge had its own runway. During World War II, the twin bases served as a maintenance unit for front line forces in Germany. Hercules transports and huge helicopters were based here. It was entirely a US base, manned almost exclusively with US personnel, with only a token Brit in residence who was given the rank of squadron leader. The large and dense Rendlesham Forest surrounds the bases.

    The Close Encounters

    Over two nights on the Christmas holiday weekend in 1980, astonishing close encounters occurred on the twin air bases of Bentwaters and Woodbridge. Preceded by a visit outside the forest to a nearby residence, a UFO landed in the forest on the Bentwaters Air Force Base around 2:30 am on December 26, 1980. It was witnessed first by two soldiers on patrol. The men first thought they were seeing a beam from a lighthouse and then guessed it could be "light-alls" — large, portable bright lights which effectively turned night to day to provide visibility for nighttime maneuvers. As they watched, the hovering light descended below treetop level. The soldiers thought perhaps a plane had just crashed on the Bentwaters runway. The men radioed to headquarters. Three relief guards were sent out, and this first pair missed the rest of the encounter. Two of the relief guards went by jeep and then by foot through the forest in pursuit of the UFO. The men described it as somewhat triangular in shape and possessed blue, white and red lights around the perimeter of the bright white body of the craft. When the soldiers came within sight of the UFO, it was hovering just above the ground, or resting on landing gear on the ground. It lifted up and drifted slowly when one of the soldiers got very near, then shot straight up at a dizzying speed while casting a bright light onto the forest, causing cattle to panic. The two soldiers were dazed by the event. A search party found them almost an hour later, still disoriented. British police were called in; airport radar controllers were contacted. Heathrow reported a target on radar that disappeared in the Bentwaters vicinity, and reports of bright lights in the sky had come in at various times from all around southern England. It was confirmed that no air traffic was above Rendlesham at the time of the incident.

    Additional encounters ensued the following night. Several military personnel saw UFOs perform maneuvers that no known human-engineered devices could carry out, including changing shape and size.

    Near midnight on the 26th, a four-man team set out to investigate the area in Rendlesham Forest where the UFO had come to rest the night before. Soon they observed a highly unusual curtain of light with mist or fog below it. As the soldiers got closer, they could see a structured object, described to be of indeterminate shape but with yellow, red and blue lights on it. The multi-colored object backed away while a high level of static electricity saturated the atmosphere, causing hair to stand on end. The soldiers radioed to Lt. Col. Halt, the deputy commander at Bentwaters, who told them to stay put, that he would bring reinforcements and join them.

    Lt. Col. Halt and approximately thirty soldiers arrived who began to erect light-alls, which initially failed to function. Halt dictated notes into a portable tape recorder, registering radiation readings that increased in the area where the UFO had landed the previous night and left three imprints in a triangular shape in the soil, and detectable heat signatures on the surrounding trees, which were visible through a starlight scope.

    Shortly before 2:00 a.m., Col. Halt and the soldiers saw a single yellow-red light on the ground, which caused the animals on the adjacent farm to become agitated. Suddenly, the lighted object rose and glided in the air towards them, issuing from itself a stream of multi-colored lights. Other military men saw the light merge into the foggy essence on the ground and implode within it. There was a tremendous flash of light and the fog transformed into a solid, domed disc with a fluorescent glow to it, rimmed with blue light. The area of blue light on the craft showered out sparkling colored bits that fell onto the ground. Allegedly, two separate military men took photographs of this object. The craft lifted and began to produce more spectacular light displays around its rim. It hovered and bobbled in the air in front of the soldiers. As the UFO moved away, up to five separate lighted objects were observed.

    The men watched the objects move out over Woodbridge and towards the sea where they put on a lengthy display, sometimes appearing as half-moons and sometimes as full circles, always sparkling with colored light. However, the encounter was to become close once more. One of the UFOs raced above the forest toward them, sending down beams of light. Two soldiers on a separate detail reported an amorphous structure of light weaving through the trees that sent light beams straight through tree trunks then seemed to explode above them like a dying star. The night’s incredible events had spanned more than four hours.

    Civilian Witnesses

    The first eyewitness was a resident on the other side of Rendlesham Forest in Sudbourne named Gordon Levett. Levett was outside preparing to put his dog away for the night. A huge mushroom-shaped bright object drifted in from the sea and hovered silently in the sky above Levett and his large guard dog, who began trembling and remained shaken by the event throughout the following day. During an interview with British UFO researcher Jenny Randles, Levett recalled:

    My attention was drawn to the sky by some unknown means. I do not know what made me look up. But I saw a shape over the coast, which was headed towards me. My dog saw it too and his attention became fixed upon it...The thing glowed with a strange phosphorescence as it dropped down to a very low height and hovered...I would say that its size was similar to the roof of my house...The object moved away across the woods towards RAF Woodbridge...The next day my dog was still upset. It refused to come out of its kennel and was trembling and cowering. This was most unusual behavior.

    The second night’s events were witnessed independently by other non-military citizens who had sightings off the premises of the base. Arthur Smekle saw a mass of lights in the sky above Rendlesham Forest about 11:00 pm while driving home through the forest. He mentioned it when he got home but was reminded that it since he was adjacent to the air base, it was probably just an aircraft. The Webb family all saw a huge white mass of lights in the sky at 2:30 am (now 27 December) while driving home to Martlesham. They stopped the car by the side of the road and watched it hover silently, then shoot off through the sky at extreme speed. Several farmers in the area also were interviewed or submitted reports to the British investigators. One of the farmers had even called into the base and reported bright lights in the sky just before the UFO came into the Bentwaters compound.

    Forest Ranger James Brownlea found physical traces of the landing in the forest the following month. While the official government memo by Col. Halt was not released for another two and one-half years, Brownlea’s January 1981 report describing finding a hole in the tree canopy, scorched trees and unusual marks on the ground coincide with what Lt. Halt officially reported to the British Ministry of Defense and the United States Air Force.

    Col. Halt’s report details the events of the second night’s encounters as follows:

    Later in the night a red sun-like light was seen through the trees. It moved about and pulsed. At one point it appeared to throw off glowing particles and then break into five separate white objects and then disappeared. Immediately thereafter, three star-like objects were noticed in the sky, two objects to the north and one to the south, all of which were about 10 off the horizon. The objects moved rapidly in sharp angular movements and displayed red, green and blue lights. The objects to the north appeared to be elliptical through an 8-12 power lens. They then turned to full circles. The objects in the north remained in the sky for an hour or more. The object to the south was visible for two or three hours and beamed down a stream of light from time to time. Numerous individuals, including the undersigned, witnessed the activities in paragraphs 2 and 3.

    As of the writing of this book in 1997, Col. Halt is a still-living military commander who witnessed one of the most remarkable, documented UFO encounters in military history. This event continues to be the subject of further research. For example, a recent book by Georgina Bruni is entirely devoted to the Bentwaters incident and cites a far more comprehensive list of witnesses than has been described by earlier writers.

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    6.10 The Japan Air Lines Incident (1986)

    On November 17, 1986, Captain Kenju Terauchi was at the helm of a B-747 cargo jet. The two-person crew consisted of a flight officer and a flight engineer. Captain Terauchi was a 29-year veteran pilot in 1986. Flight 1628 was en route to Tokyo via Rekyjavik, Iceland and Anchorage, Alaska. At approximately 6:00 pm in the evening, the aircraft was passing over the Canadian/Alaskan border and the crew was making preparations to land at Anchorage. At 6:19 pm Alaska Standard Time, Capt. Terauchi radioed a traffic information request to the Anchorage Air Route Traffic Control Center. Air Traffic Control Specialist Carl Henley checked his radar and told the captain there was no traffic in his vicinity. Capt. Terauchi responded that lighted traffic was in close proximity at 12 o’clock at the same altitude as Flight 1628, following or shadowing his aircraft. Terauchi declined a request by Specialist Henley to check higher and lower altitude traffic, stating later that the object was level with the plane.

    Henley checked with Elmendorf Air Force Base radar and learned they had a primary target in the same position Terauchi reported. During some of the frequent radio exchanges between Henley and Flight 1628, Henley did find primary returns in the same areas JL1628 reported traffic. Terauchi requested and obtained permission to make turns and deviations. The captain reported to Henley that the object stayed right with the 747. At one point, Terauchi asked for and obtained permission to make a 360° turn to the right to fly parallel to the object, at which time it was not visible. When Terauchi returned to his original course, the object was there, as if it had been waiting for them, the Captain later said in his statement for the FAA. Specialist Henley also vectored a United Airlines aircraft and a military C-130 within range to have a look. Each pilot reported no contact, although Terauchi had also lost visual sight of the UFO by then. During the course of the event, Henley observed three types of tentative radar targets.

    When Henley asked Terauchi to describe the object, he stated that he could not identify any markings nor state what kind of aircraft it might be. Under clear, cloudless conditions, Terauchi stated that he saw white and yellow strobing lights on the unidentified craft. The 747’s on-board color radar was employed throughout the course of the sighting to determine the distance from the plane to the object as five to seven nautical miles. Capt. Terauchi and his crew were interviewed and debriefed by Jack Wright of the FAA upon landing at Anchorage. During the debriefing, Capt. Terauchi stated that this was the first time anything like this had happened to him.

    Explaining the incident, Terauchi said that just after passing the Canadian/Alaskan border, flying at 35,000 feet, an object, at times larger than the B-747, with four or five lights in a line, appeared approximately five to seven nautical miles in front of the aircraft. At times, more than one UFO was visible. The sighting lasted nearly an hour--55 minutes per the FAA report. Although the Captain and his crew were a bit shaken, the FAA determined them to be professional and rational. According to Timothy Good’s account in his book Above Top Secret, Captain Terauchi reported that he was unable to explain the event in conventional terms and said that the objects may have been extraterrestrial in origin since they moved and stopped so quickly. The Captain remarked that they were carrying French wine to Japan, stating "maybe they wanted to drink it." See also the personal statements about this case by Air Traffic Control Specialist Carl E. Henley and an Alert Report by Franklin L. Cunningham, Director, AAL-1.

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    6.11 The United Kingdom Wave of the 1990s - Triangular Craft and More

    Flying triangles — huge, silent, low — and slow-flying, yet capable of acceleration at extremely high speeds. We began to learn of these objects during the massive Belgium wave beginning in 1990. The Disclosure Project activated its first investigative team to do real-time research in March of 1992. Over 2,000 sightings were registered in Belgium, many of them by law enforcement and military personnel. Indeed, the triangle had been tracked on both civilian and military radar through maneuvers and exhibiting speeds far in excess of that which any conventional or experimental aircraft could be capable. In 1992, UFO activity increased dramatically in Scotland. Settled in the towns and valleys between Edinburgh and Glasgow, reports started coming in with regularity.

    One particular town, Bonnybridge, seemed to be the focal point of the flap. A close-knit community of about 5,500 people, young and old alike have reported numerous sightings of various craft, including the triangles. Bonnybridge Councilor Bill Buchanan stated in August of 1996, "To my knowledge, 3,000 people have seen something unusual in our skies during the past few years....And there may be many more who have been afraid to come forward. In the early years of the wave, most sightings involved balls of light, often spinning and maneuvering among themselves, or black discs. In the mid-1990’s, sightings of triangular craft were often reported.

    Skysearch Scotland, an investigative group led by the Malcolm family in Falkirk, began amassing not only reports but videotape footage of what appeared to be lights in triangular formation, balls of light, and black triangular-shaped hovering craft. Witnesses reported seeing these objects dive into the sea or emerge from it. Several Bonnybridge area residents recounted Close Encounters of the Fifth Kind, or human-interactive experiences. A young gentleman from Armadale told of a 35-40 foot bar-shaped object that came rapidly down from the sky during a lightning storm. It flew low over the hedgerows and passed directly over the man’s car, then came to a halt in a field.

    The witness reported, "it just sat there, hovering silently, about 15 feet off the ground. I got out of the car and pointed my halogen lamp at it to get a better look. Immediately, the bulb blew. Then my headlights went out. I tried the car ignition, but it wouldn’t start. Suddenly, the thing lept up and reversed at incredible speed over the top of the car." The witness called the police on his cell phone, but it was an hour later than when the sighting occurred. The gentleman cannot account for the missing hour. After his vehicle was towed back to town, the electrical system functioned perfectly once more. Starting in 1994, a spate of sightings of huge triangular craft began to come in from England.

    Most reports came from the Midlands and to the north. However, several reports were received from the southwest of England. Each incident had remarkable similarities. Eye witnesses reported the triangular craft to be dark or black, blending in with the night sky. The craft often had a light at each apex of the triangle, and a different type of light in the center. The huge objects flew at a low altitude and a low speed. They were either totally silent or emitted a slight humming noise. In the summer of 1996, a family was coming home to Glastonbury in southwestern England about dusk on a Sunday evening. Suddenly, the driver - the father - noticed a dark, silent shape pacing the car.

    The entire family observed a huge triangular craft at low altitude above them. After observing it for a bit, the object was seen to simply vanish. In October and November of 1996, significant waves of sightings of black triangles occurred in the United Kingdom, including a hot spot in the Cardigan Bay area of West Wales where numerous sightings were reported within these two months. Two articles in The Sunday Times (London) in August of 1996 report that the triangular craft has been identified as an experimental craft unveiled by the U.S. Air Force and NASA in August 1996. The articles speculate that because of a near collision with a 747 commercial jet in 1995, the government had come clean. Rumors have surfaced since 1995 of an experimental triangular craft sighted in California and Nevada which was called "The Flying Dorito", no doubt not its official name.

    According to The Sunday Times, the "wave-rider" craft was proposed in the 1950s by British scientist Terrence Nonweiler. The account goes on to give specifications of the craft -- capable of speeds in excess of 3,000 mph; ‘surfs’ on the air; low speed flight and ability to float or hover near ground level (termed "LoFlyte"). The article further cites avionics experts who claim the triangle cannot be traced by radar and that a computer ‘flies’ the craft because human pilots are unable to perform all of its complex maneuvers. The mystery of the gigantic triangular craft is far from solved. Sightings continue to be reported around the world to the present day. Many hundreds of these recent triangular craft sightings can be found on the Web site for the National UFO Reporting Center found at http://www.msatech.com/nuforc/

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    6.12 The Mexico Wave - From 1991

    The solar eclipse in 1991 was total in Mexico City. Many people were outdoors observing and videotaping. Much to their surprise, what they captured on tape in addition to the eclipse began an unprecedented wave of UFO sightings that has continued unabated from 1991 to the time of this writing in 1997. On the day of the eclipse, seventeen people in four cities videoed what appears to be the same object: a silver disk whose chunky shape earned it the moniker of the "hockey puck." One tape was shot by a television network executive, another by a priest; indeed, by people from all walks of life in cities spread out across the vast Mexican landscape.

    The tapes began arriving in the mail of Jaime Moussan, the host of "60 Minutos", the Mexican version of our "60 Minutes" in the USA. Sr. Moussan launched a thorough, in-depth investigation of the phenomenon. He had as guests on his show many of the people who had taken the videotapes. His investigation included extensive computer analyses. The results revealed that the same type of UFO, or "ovni" as it is called in Mexico, was captured by all the tapes, and each one appeared to disturb the air behind it. These features were noted in each one of the videotapes taken on that July day. Further investigation ruled out stars, planets or balloons as possible explanations.

    As time went on, tapes continued to be taken and sent to investigators, including Sr. Moussan. Many ovnis were filmed near jets taking off or landing at the Mexico City airport. There was often a visual lock-on with the ovni by pilots or air traffic controllers; however, the objects did not appear on radar. There were several reports from pilots of instruments suddenly malfunctioning momentarily when the ovni was nearby. There was concern about safety for the aircraft. Thankfully, none experienced any danger at all. An interesting correlation to the Mexico wave of 1991 came from 4,000 miles away on the same date. What appears to be the identical object was videotaped from Mt. Unsen, Japan.

    Indeed, when the videos from the four cities in Mexico are split-screened with the object shot in Japan, it is impossible to discern any differences. Those who would claim the entire Mexican wave on the solar eclipse is an elaborate hoax would be hard pressed to explain an identical, simultaneous sighting on the other side of the globe. Moreover, Sr. Moussan has received over 3,000 videos since 1991 of the ‘hockey puck’ UFO as well as huge triangular craft.

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    6.13 The Incident in Varginha – Extraterrestrial Life Forms captured in Brazil?

    Facts supplied by Vitorio Pacaccini, Belo Horizonte, Brazil On January 20, 1996, military forces captured two apparent extraterrestrial creatures - still alive - in Brazil. The captures occurred in neighboring areas of the city of Varginha, located in the state of Minas Gerais in central Brazil. The event is to be considered one of the most significant ever registered in Brazil, and perhaps in the entire world. Military authorities are keeping secret the details of the operation, but information has leaked to the UFO community due to the investigative work of Professor Vitorio Pacaccini and Ubirajara Rodrigues. Both men live nearby and are considered serious and dedicated researchers.

    They have devoted over 3,000 hours of investigation to this case. On the afternoon of January 20, about 3:30 pm local time, three young girls named Liliana, Falquira and Katia were walking outside of town. They came upon a strange, small creature in an area of small bushes at the edge of a field only a few blocks from where they live. It was a Saturday and the girls were returning home from their jobs.

    Crossing an empty area, their attention was attracted by a very weird creature just a few meters away. The ET was kneeling and looked as if it were hurt and suffering pain. No UFO was seen at that time. The girls observed the creature for a few minutes then ran away, afraid that what they had just encountered might be the devil. The three girls were extensively interrogated by the above-mentioned researchers, leaving no doubt whatsoever about what had happened. Very simple kids, they described the creature as being of a dark color with a small body of four to five feet in height. It had no hair at all, had a large brown head and small neck.

    The face was described as possessing two eyes - large and red - with no pupils visible. There was a slit in place of a mouth, a very small nose and, interestingly, three protuberances right on the top of its forehead. The girls described the protuberances as horns, thus causing them to fear they had just encountered a devil. Following the leads, researchers Pacaccini and Rodrigues started making inquiries everywhere around the town of Varginha to see if anybody else had seen the same creature.

    They found several people who observed the military operations as well as the creature in the same location and, perhaps, other creatures in different locations. While conducting the investigation, both men discovered that different witnesses had seen army trucks and other military vehicles and personnel that very morning, just a few blocks from where the girls had their encounter. While trying to find out what the military were doing, Pacaccini and Rodrigues came to meet a few soldiers and sergeants. One of the soldiers decided to talk secretly about the military mission and gave a confidential taped interview. The military man confirmed that at about 9:00 am on January 20, the Fire Department of Varginha was called by the military to capture a strange ‘animal’ in the Jardim Andere district.

    Among the firemen who responded were Sergeant Palhares, Soldier Nivaldo, Corporal Rubens and Soldier Santos, under the command of Major Maciel who was reportedly present as well. Arriving at the scene, the firemen saw that this was no strange animal at all and realized the finding should be reported to the Army Sergeant School Command - Escola de Sargentos das Armas (ESA) in neighboring Tres Coracoes, about ten miles from Varginha. Before there could possibly be time for the Sergeant School to respond, an army truck appeared on the scene. The firemen understood that the high staff of ESA also had been informed about the incident.

    The creature was captured using nets and other equipment normally used to capture wild animals. The still-living creature was placed in a one meter square wooden box, which was covered with a resistant fabric and the whole affair was placed atop the army truck. The creature was curled up in the box and wrapped in net. The witnesses stated that it was emitting a buzzing sound similar to a bee.

    The vehicle headed to the ESA. All personnel involved were ordered by Lieutenant Colonel Wanderley to refrain from talking about the incident with anyone else, telling the men it was a secret operation. Interestingly, Lt. Col. Wanderley’s expertise was in atomic-biological-chemical warfare. Perhaps this is why he was put in charge of the operation even though there was a general in command of the ESA at the time. Policeman Marco Chereze was involved with the capture of one of the creatures. He touched the life form without protection. He died two weeks later with a general infection.

    The family showed Sr. Pacaccini the last blood exam, which showed that his blood contained 8% of an unknown toxic substance. According to Sr. Pacaccini, the Varginha police department has gone to great lengths to attempt to prove that Sr. Chereze was not even working on January 20, 1996. However, the Chereze family confirms that he was indeed on duty that night, that he came home briefly to change clothes and inform them that he could not come back for dinner because he would be working late on a mission. After the first soldier gave the taped interview to Pacaccini and Rodrigues, a few other military people came forward to speak about the incident, under the condition that their identities would be kept secret.

    All those who came forward gave confidential taped interviews. All confirmed that a second creature, probably the one seen by the three girls in the afternoon was captured the same night by personnel from the army, fire department and police secret service. Through the investigative efforts of Pacaccini and Rodrigues, many of the details of the recovery operation are now known. The second creature, identical to the first, was taken alive to the regional hospital in Varginha. After spending a few hours at the regional hospital, the creature was transferred to the better equipped Humanitas Hospital.

    Two days later, on the afternoon of January 22, the creature — now dead — was the subject of a huge and well-disguised operation to remove it to the AS. A few nurses and other personnel from the regional hospital confirmed some facts, although they were suppressed for some time after the incident. All individuals at Humanitas Hospital who had contact with the creature were admonished to not discuss it with anyone, not even their relatives, and to specifically avoid the press and UFO researchers.Interviews with some of the military men involved in the removal operation who gave confidential interviews reported that three army trucks were used, each with a two-man team.

    They speculated that three trucks were used to remove one possibly extraterrestrial body so that none of the trucks would know who was indeed transporting the body of the creature. The Brazilian investigators have since determined these facts. The driving teams, although kept outside the hospital itself, observed details of the operation. Military personnel from Brazil’s S-2 — the Army internal intelligence section — was in charge of getting the corpse from the interior of the hospital, placing it lying down in a wooden box and then loading it into one of the trucks.

    All three trucks went back to ESA. The next morning at 4:00 am, the trucks headed to another military facility located in Campinas in the state of Sao Paulo, a 200-mile drive. There, the corpse was transferred to the University of Campinas, one of Brazil’s best institutions. The body was autopsied by Dr. Fortunato Badan Palhares, who gained worldwide acclaim as one of the best forensic doctors alive when he conducted the autopsy of the famous German Nazi Mengle, whose body was found in Brazil. However, Dr. Palhares has publicly denied having taken part in the autopsy of the creature found in January of 1996.

    One year after the Varginha incident, another witness came forward — Joao Bosco Manoel. He called Sr. Pacaccini. He and Sr. Rodrigues met with him and heard his story. He was an independent witness to the capture of the first creature. At approximately 10:45 am on January 20, Sr. Bosco was in the area selling fish door-to-door when his attention was diverted by a fire truck and firemen, but no evidence of a fire. He hid and watched the goings on. He observed six firemen hurriedly emerging from the bushes, followed by four firemen wearing big gloves and between them were carrying the creature wrapped in a net.

    The life form was put into the truck and the men drove away. Sr. Bosco noticed an extremely acrid, ammonia-like smell permeating the open air. Sr. Bosco spoke at a press conference and made his story public, stating that he could identify at least two of the firemen. This caused something of an uproar due to the official denial surrounding the story. Sr. Bosco was intimidated and threatened following his press conference, and Sr. Pacaccini spent a great deal of time meeting with him following threatening incidents. Sr. Bosco eventually moved out of the state of Minas Gerais.

    The Brazilian media has widely reported on the incident and the majority of the population understands that the case is real and that the military and civil authorities are keeping the facts absolutely quiet. Researchers Pacaccini and Rodrigues have determined that the policemen involved in the captures have since been transferred and promoted. For a period of time after the incident, the region where Varginha is located, in the southern part of the state of Minas Gerais, was experiencing one of the largest waves of UFO sightings ever registered, including reports of huge UFOs observed at close range and reported contacts with inhabitants. This event was covered on the front page of The Wall Street Journal Europe although the article’s tone was very much tongue in cheek and is a good example of mainstream media reporting techniques discussed in section 4.1.

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    6.14 The Arizona Sightings - March 1997

    On March 13, 1997, flying objects traveled across a large portion of southern Arizona. Seen by thousands, videotaped by many, evoking comment from the military and government, the most significant UFO event in a decade occupied a prominent place in the press and gained worldwide attention. The National UFO Reporting Center in Seattle, Washington, received its first call at 8:16 pm on March 13. A retired police officer from Paulden, Arizona, sixty miles north of Phoenix, called in to report observing five red lights in a cluster headed south. In less than two minutes, another report came in from Prescott, fifteen miles south of Paulden.

    It all broke loose after that, with multiple calls coming in from Wickenburg to Tempe. The Center’s director, Peter Davenport, who describes himself as usually skeptical about the reports received at the Center, stated: "The incident over Arizona was the most dramatic I’ve seen...what we have here is the real thing. They are here." As the airborne objects came over the flight paths leading to the Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport, more than one commercial pilot radioed to the control tower asking for an identification of the lights.

    The air traffic controllers had no answers. They could visually see the objects, yet nothing unaccounted for appeared on their radar screens. Investigation subsequent to March 13 revealed that callers jammed police department phone lines, as well as television and radio station phones. Luke Air Force Base near Phoenix was also besieged with calls of sighting reports as the objects traveled south over the greater Phoenix metropolitan area. The objects’ speed over greater Phoenix was estimated by many observers as a leisurely 30 miles per hour.

    This certainly suggests that the objects indeed wanted to be seen and videotaped. A variety of UFOs were reported: triangles, lights in a straight line, orbs in a V-shaped or delta formation, an actual solid triangular-shaped object. Many witnesses stated that the lights seemed to glow from within — they were very bright but did not shine or cast light. Most observers who saw them at closer range stated the lights were white with orange to red edges and centers. Some witnesses could discern a dim, dark shape behind the light formation that distorted or blotted out the stars as it slowly passed.

    The Disclosure Project’s director and research director spoke with a retired Air Force pilot on the evening of March 14 who saw the lights clearly from his home. He resides in Carefree, which is north of Phoenix and has much less light pollution than within the city. He described the lights as silent, slow moving and maintaining a formation. He stated that this was unlike anything he had witnessed in the skies during his entire career as a military pilot.

    Regardless of the type of formation seen, all observers agreed that the lights or objects were slow moving, very large and totally silent. The size of the object was estimated as being from 900 feet to more than a mile in length. Computer analysis of witness’s videotapes done by Village Labs in Tempe marked the length as 6,000 feet — well over a mile long. Richard Price of USA Today, in an article appearing in the June 18, 1997 issue, interviewed witness Bill Greiner, who stated he would never be the same after the sighting. Mr. Greiner turned from a skeptic to someone who saw what he describes as "astonishing and a little frightening."

    Mr. Greiner, a cement truck driver, was hauling a load of cement down a mountain north of Phoenix when he saw two white, orange and red UFOs. He described them as having spinning tops. Greiner observed one of the orbs break away and fly over Luke Air Force Base. He stated that three F-16 fighter jets went in pursuit of the UFO. As the jets approached, the UFO shot straight up and quickly vanished. In Mr. Greiner’s words:

    "It was crazy. I know those pilots saw it. Hell, I’ll take a lie detector test on national TV if that guy from the base does the same thing... I wish the government would just admit it. It’s like having 50,000 people in a stadium watch a football game and then having someone tell us we weren’t there."

    The analyses of the amateur video tapes undertaken at Village Labs by Jim Dilettoso and his partner Michael Tanner reveal that four different formations or objects traveled from north to south on the evening of March 13, 1997. The transit across the region lasted 106 minutes. The lights were uniform, did not vary in brightness or intensity across the span of each light, and did not glow. They were determined not to be aircraft lights, holograms, lasers or military flares. Comparison with the lights on the Phoenix skyline seen in the videos shows the UFOs to be markedly unique. The residents of southern Arizona were intrigued, curious and expected an explanation from the civilian and military authorities. While several reports from various military personnel stated that the lights were flares being used during National Guard war game maneuvers, Mr. Dilettoso stated that investigation revealed the National Guard could not, would not and did not cause the lights that were seen by thousands of Arizonans on March 13, 1997.

    While jets from Luke Air Force Base were in the Phoenix skies on that night, a spokesman from the base assured the press that the jets’ lights could not account for the sightings. Reacting to the groundswell coming from the local citizenry, Phoenix Councilwoman Frances Barrows raised a question at a city council meeting as to whether anyone was conducting an official investigation. Instantly, the public seized upon her comment and made her their "official" contact to the government.

    Although Councilwoman Barrows said she did not see the objects herself, many of her constituents did. When the public and the media learned of her raising the question of an investigation, hundreds of calls were received from the curious citizens who now had a public servant upon whom to focus. But the city council, the mayor’s office, the governor’s office and US Senator John McCain were unable to effect any official action. Senator McCain referred it to the US Air Force, who announced in June 1997 that it would do nothing to investigate the incidents, referring it back to the local jurisdictions.

    And, of course, this would be the Air Force’s position since they have officially been out of the UFO investigation business since the closure of Project Blue Book in 1969. Two years later, the above mentioned National UFO Reporting Center released a special update report on their web site based on a significant amount of evidence collected since the original sightings. The update substantiated the earlier reports of both the objects size, appearance, and movements. In contrast to sightings and reports by both air traffic controllers and a commercial flight crew on the ground at Sky Harbor Airport near Phoenix, "senior officers from Luke Air Force Base stated that they knew nothing about the incident, and that the base had received no reports from the public regarding the event" (as stated the day after the sighting event took place).

    Long distance telephone bills, which indicate calls to the base, contradict the statements made by these officers. Finally, a witness who identified himself as an airman stationed at Luke Air Force Base, reported that the Air Force had launched two fighters from the base and "that one of the aircraft had ‘intercepted’ a gigantic object over the intersection of Indian School Road and 7th Avenue."

    It is not surprising that even after two years, the sorting out of the truth from conflicting reports makes an analysis of this very well documented event difficult. The search for additional clues into this momentous day in March 1997 continues to intrigue researchers, analysts, the media and thousands of residents of Arizona and beyond.

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    6.15 St. Clair, Illinois Sightings in Jan, 2000

    One of the more recent and well-documented sightings observed by multiple witnesses occurred during the early morning hours of January 5, 2000 in St. Clair County, IL just east of St. Louis, MO. This sighting was researched by several organizations including NUFORC, MUFON, and NIDS and later a TV documentary was aired which included excellent computer simulations on what was seen based on all the various witness reports. The following summary description is quoted from the NUFORC report of the event. "On Wednesday, January 05, 2000, the National UFO Reporting Center received two telephone messages (at 0316 and 0351 hrs. Pacific Standard Time) from Officer Thomas ‘Ed’ Barton, employed by the Lebanon, IL, Police Department. 

    The messages apprised our Center that a UFO sighting had occurred in St. Clair County, Illinois, and in surrounding areas, at approximately 0410 hrs. (Central) earlier that morning. "Later the same morning, we were able to talk to Officer Barton, who reported to us the following: At approximately 0410 hrs. (Central) on that morning, he overheard an announcement by the St. Clair (IL) Emergency Dispatch operator that a citizen had entered the Highland, IL, police station, and requested that an officer go outside and view a very peculiar object that was hovering nearby in the sky. 

    The citizen had witnessed the bizarre looking object on his way to work, and he apparently refused to leave the station until a police officer had viewed the object with him. "Having heard the announcement about the incident over his radio, Officer Barton looked to the southeast from his location in Lebanon, and noticed two extremely bright white lights suspended in the sky, close to the horizon.

    The two lights were radiating so much light that the spectacle reminded Officer Barton of the Japanese ‘Rising Sun’ symbol, used on the Japanese battle flag.  A very short period of time later, the two large lights appeared to merge into one, and the illumination the object was radiating appeared to increase dramatically.

    "Officer Barton began driving south and east in attempt to approach the object.  He turned his overhead flashers on, and at times was driving at 75-80 M.P.H. toward the object, which was still generally to the southeast of his position.  After a short period of time, Officer Barton realized that the object appeared to be traveling toward him. "

    He stopped his vehicle, extinguished his overhead flashers, and rolled down the window on the passenger side of his vehicle. The object approached his location, and passed overhead at an estimated altitude of 1,000 to 1,500 feet, and within an estimated 100 feet lateral distance of his position on the ground. It was headed generally to the west, or northwest, at this time. The object was distinctly triangular in shape, with three white lights on the apices of the triangle, and it exhibited a ‘galaxy’ of peculiar lights on its aft end, including white, hues of red or pink, and perhaps other colors, as well. "After passing overhead Officer Barton, the object suddenly turned to its left, without either banking or yawing apparently, it suddenly accelerated quite dramatically, and seemed to ‘streak’ to the west, covering approximately 8 miles, the officer estimated, in approximately 3 seconds.

    (Note: Officer Barton, in multiple telephone conversations with our organization, and during at least one radio broadcast, has emphasized how almost unbelievably quickly the object accelerated and moved a considerable distance to the southwest in just a few seconds. Its velocity was almost unimaginable, he reports. This is one aspect of the case that strongly suggests to us that the object almost certainly was not of human manufacture.)

    "He radioed St. Clair County Emergency Dispatch, apprising them that he had the object in sight, and advising them as to the direction it had moved, generally to the southwest. He recommended that dispatch contact units to the south and west of his position, e.g. Shiloh, Millstadt and Dupo, to have the officers there attempt to spot the object from their vantage points. "

    Apparently at least one officer from Shiloh, IL, witnessed the object next, and two other officers, who have not come forward and who apparently do not wish to be identified, witnessed the object while they were standing in the cemetery of their town, as well. "An officer from the Millstadt Police Department, Officer Craig Stevens, with whom NUFORC also spoke, overheard the broadcast, and moved his cruiser to a dark part of that town to see if he could spot the object in the night sky.  He quickly spotted the object to the west of his location, at approximately 45 degrees above the horizontal plane, and gauged its size as ‘huge.’ He estimated that it was ‘one or two stories tall, and perhaps three stories long.’ It had several very bright lights on it. "St. Clair Dispatch requested that someone, if possible, attempt to get a photograph of the object.

    In response to that request, Officer Stevens removed Polaroid-type camera stored in the trunk of his cruiser and quickly photographed the object. Because the outside temperature was low, approximately 18-20°F, neither the camera, nor the film functioned well, so the resolution of the photograph is not good. "After Officer Stevens had taken the photograph, the object appeared to move further to the west, moving toward Dupo, IL, Cahokia, IL, and St. Louis, MO. 

    A Dupo police officer may have witnessed the object at that time. "In the final analysis, the police departments and communities involved in the incident include the following:  Highland, Summerfield, Lebanon, Shiloh, Mascoutah, Millstadt, Dupo, and Cahokia, Illinois. The object was observed by officers from at least the following communities (in chronological sequence):  Lebanon, Shiloh, (Other?), Millstadt, Dupo, and Cahokia (?).("Notes and Addenda:"1) Scott Air Force Base: At one point during the sighting, we estimate, the object was within 2-3 statute miles of Scott Air Force Base. However, an official spokesman for that base reportedly made an official statement to the effect that,

    A) their tower was closed for approximately one hour during the time of the sighting;

    B) their base radar had been turned off for unspecified reasons during the same hour; and

    C) none of their personnel was aware of the sighting, and none had seen the object." Five more notes and addenda follow this section and can be seen in the original report.

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