The Destruction of Paul Bennewitz
September 30, 1997

from UfosAbout Website

recovered through WayBackMachine Website



All visible objects, man, are but as pasteboard masks.


But in each event - in the living act, the undoubted deed - there, some unknown but still reasoning thing puts forth the mouldings of its features from behind the unreasoning mask. If man will strike, strike through the mask! How can the prisoner reach outside except by thrusting through the wall?


To me, the white whale is that wall, shoved near to me. Sometimes I think there's naught beyond. But 'tis enough. He tasks me; he heaps me; I see in him outrageous strength, with an inscrutable malice sinewing it.


That inscrutable thing is chiefly what I hate; and be the white whale agent, or be the white whale principal, I will wreak that hate upon him.
(Moby Dick by Herman Melville)

In 1979, Paul Bennewitz operated a small electronics company, Thunder Scientific Laboratory, in Albuquerque, New Mexico.


He was a physicist, and inventor, and a tinkerer. He also had an avid interest in UFOs, and was an investigator for APRO (Aerial Phenomenon Research Organization- based in Arizona), the UFO group started by Jim and Coral Lorenzen.


From his home on the outskirts of Albuquerque, Bennewitz had, along with others, seen strange lights in the night sky over the Manzano Test Range outside Albuquerque. The lights seemed to appear almost every evening and to fly towards Coyote Canyon, also a part of the Kirtland Air Force Base area that included Sandia National laboratory and Phillips laboratory, both of which do ultra-top-secret research.

In 1979 - 1980 (the record of the year is unclear), Bennewitz and a psychologist/UFOlogist named Dr. Leo Sprinkle investigated the story that a deeply troubled woman named Myrna Hansen told them. She claimed that she and her young son had seen a UFO while driving on a rural road near Cimarron, in northeastern New Mexico. With the patient's permission, Dr. Sprinkle began hypnotizing her, and over a three month period, Bennewitz and Sprinkle heard a very unusual story.

Under hypnosis, the patient said that, not only had she seen several UFOs that day, but she had seen cattle being abducted and she and her son had also been abducted by the aliens and taken to a secret underground base where they saw the cattle being mutilated and drained of their blood and saw vats containing human body parts.


She further said that some sort of implants were placed in the bodies of her and her son and that the aliens could control their minds through these devices.

Bennewitz believed the woman's story, and he believed that it was connected somehow to the lights he was seeing over Manzano. He began filming the lights, amassing over 2600 feet of film. He also came to believe that he could receive signals from the craft that he observed.


He built antennas and receivers to receive low-frequency electromagnetic transmissions that he believed came from the alien craft. Bennewitz called his "mission" Project Beta. Those who have seen the films and heard the tapes of the low-frequency radio transmissions say there is no doubt that Bennewitz was filming and recording real phenomena.

On 24 October 1980, Bennewitz contacted Kirtland AFB to make a report of what he felt was a real threat against Manzano Weapons Storage Area by UFOs. He first communicated with Major Ernest E. Edwards, who referred him to S.A. Richard C. Doty.

Richard Doty and Jerry Miller, Scientific Advisor for Air Force Test and Evaluation Center, Kirtland AFB, interviewed Bennewitz in his home on the edge of Manzano Base. They examined Bennewitz' films and tapes, and Miller, a former Project Bluebook investigator at Wright-Patterson AFB, determined that the films did show some type of unidentified aerial objects.


They also noted the array of electronic surveillance equipment that Bennewitz had pointed at Manzano. The Air Force Office of Special Investigations declined to investigate further, but scheduled an inspection of Bennewitz' data by personnel at Wright-Patterson. AFOSI also did a background check on Bennewitz.

Taking a step that ultimately led to his later troubles, Bennewitz wrote a computer program that he claimed could translate the alien radio transmissions. He now came to believe that he was intercepting the messages that the aliens were transmitting to mind-control devices such as those that Myrna Hansen claimed had been placed in her and her son.

On 10 November 1980, Bennewitz presented his evidence again, this time to high ranking Air Force personnel including Brigadier General William Brooksher. In the report of this meeting, it is noted that Bennewitz was advised to apply for an Air Force grant to study the phenomena. Once again, however, the AFOSI declined to investigate the matter themselves.

Bennewitz was not to give up so easily. Besides the regular reports he was sending to APRO, he was contacting U.S. Senator Harrison Schmidt and Senator Peter Domenici, as well as other UFOlogists such as Linda Moulton Howe and John Lear.

By 1982, APRO had decided to investigate Bennewitz' claims. They sent William Moore, one of their directors and a former-schoolteacher-turned-writer-and-ufologist, to talk to Bennewitz. Moore had gained a degree of fame in the UFO field by co-authoring (with Charles Berlitz) The Philadelphia Experiment and The Roswell Incident.

By now, Bennewitz' story had become quite complicated. He told Moore that the alien transmissions he had received indicated that two types of aliens had invaded the U.S.: The peaceful "whites" and the evil "grays". The grays, who he said were responsible for cattle mutilations and the abductions of humans, had a treaty with the U.S. government that allowed them to build a secret underground base beneath Archuleta Peak on the Jicarillo Indian Reservation near Dulce, New Mexico. The aliens, however, were about to break the treaty...

Perhaps the oddest twist in this story is that Bill Moore later claimed in a "confession" that he was recruited by someone with the code name "Falcon" to help drive Paul Bennewitz crazy. He claimed that he was given his orders by an AFOSI Agent, and that for four years, he was asked to feed disinformation, including the forged "Aquarius Document" to Bennewitz. This disinformation included "verification" of Bennewitz' beliefs about the "grays" and the underground base at Dulce.

Paul Bennewitz gradually became more and more paranoid, claiming aliens came through the walls of his house at night and injected him with chemicals. He began keeping guns and knives all over his house.


Finally he had to be hospitalized for "exhaustion". It is said that he recovered and now refuses to grant interviews or to have anything to do with the subject of UFOs.


More information about Paul Bennewitz: