Thursday, January 11, 2007

Olbermann's Two Cents on O'Hare UFO Sighting

Flying Saucer Hovering Over Ohare
Countdown With Keith Olbermann
1-4-07


". . . And then there are the UFOs over O‘Hare Airport in Chicago. The FAA first says there were no reports filed about anything strange. Now it admits there were some reports filled out about something strange."
Keith Olbermann     And then there‘s the story you may have already heard bout, the United Airlines employees who swear it was something other worldly in skies above Chicago‘s O‘Hare Airport on November 7th, but neither the FAA, nor indeed their own employer, appears to be taking them seriously. “Chicago Tribune” interviewing several people anonymously, including maintenance workers, baggage handlers and pilots, who each and all described a dark gray, saucer-like object that hovered low over Concourse C, what is it, C of the United Airlines terminal, just before sunset, before shooting off into the sky.

This isn‘t a picture of it. That‘s a plane. Some say it moved so fast it literally punched a hole in the clouds. United airlines claims it had no record of the sighting, even though employees say they filled out reports. The F.A.A. initially told the Tribune that it had no information on the U.F.O. Then, after the newspaper filed paperwork under the Freedom of Information Act, the F.A.A. turned up a call from a United Airlines supervisor to the airport control tower, asking whether the object was on radar. And now the agency has concluded it was, quote, weather phenomenon, and it considers this case closed.

As we always do when the mysteries of space elude our feeble understanding, we turn to the chief astronomer for the Franklin Institute, Derrick Pitts. Derrick, thanks for being with us again.

DERRICK PITTS, FRANKLIN INSTITUTE: My pleasure Keith.

OLBERMANN: All right, let‘s start with the U.F.O. sighting at O‘Hare. When it‘s pilots saying this, do we have to listen? What is it they could have seen, but not been able to identify?

PITTS: Well that‘s a really difficult question to answer, because there are all kinds of sky phenomena that could have manifested themselves, even though the F.A.A. says it was some kind of weather situation. There are lots of different things that could be seen in the sky. A lot of them are actually unexplainable, but that doesn‘t necessarily mean that they are alien spacecraft.

Now, seeing that it came at this close to the holiday, I wonder if it was a little holiday cheer involved here, Keith, or maybe it was the specter of high jet fuel prices, or something like that. I‘m not sure. But the idea that they would suddenly turn up this report really is a little suspicious to me. Although, you would think that pilots would be able to describe, pretty accurately, these odd things that they do see. I‘m sure there are many of them. The question though is, is it just an unidentified flying object, or if it actually was an alien spacecraft. We‘ll have to hear from the aliens to find out.

OLBERMANN: Yes, the file footage we always show for U.F.O. stories, again, this was just a plane, was actually taken by the Mexican Air Force, and that government at least acknowledges we don‘t have a clue what this is. Why can‘t the U.S. government just say, we don‘t have a clue what this is that the United Airlines workers might have seen on November 7th? Why do we get this one version of the story, followed by a Freedom of Information Act measure, and then another version of the story?

PITTS: I don‘t know why they would do something like that. It‘s a completely legitimate response to say, I don‘t know. There are plenty of phenomena that aren‘t identifiable immediately, and this could certainly be one of them. So, rather than create this air of suspicious and all this other stuff that they have going on, it‘s much better for them to just say I don‘t know.

And you would think the number of objects that get seen by pilots over and over again, that would immediately crop up.

OLBERMANN: It seems to me that the likeliest conclusion here is that the aliens have landed many years ago in this country, in this world, with one goal in mind, to create conspiracy theories and then just sit back and enjoy them.

PITTS: And I think they‘re doing a great job at that.

OLBERMANN: They are. Unlike the Mexican Air Force pictures, there‘s no video of what these guys at United Airlines may have seen. So does something happen now? There‘s no visual form of evidence to back them up.

PITTS: Unfortunately, the only thing that they have to go on is just the reports provided by the pilots and the baggage handlers that saw it. It is possible that someone might try to create an actual U.F.O. report. There is an organization that does take these eyewitness viewings of these things and try to make scientific sense of what they actually were, so that they could get to the bottom of whether or not it‘s unidentified or whatever. But in this instance, if there‘s no corroboration anywhere, for example, the F.A.A. has no radar record or anything of that sort, it‘s going to be pretty tough to tie this down as something other than, gosh, we don‘t know what they saw.

OLBERMANN: Plus, if they‘re intelligent aliens, they would have known that at that hour of the day, you don‘t fly into O‘Hare, you go to Midway to avoid ramp saturation. Let me ask you lastly about the thing in New Jersey. Is that meteor, moon rocks, space debris, Ming‘s revenge, what was that?

PITTS: High school students down the street with a big sling shot, throwing things into the building. This one is going to be a little easier to come to an answer on, because all that has to be done is just analyze the object and figure out what the material is. It‘s quite simple to figure out whether or not it‘s of terrestrial, of terrestrial origin, and that will tell us right away whether it‘s a meteorite.

First of all, it looks like it has all the signs. It came through the ceiling. Nobody really knows where it came, from but if they just check out the material, they‘ll know from there.

OLBERMANN: Yes, it‘s real shiny and you have to throw it real hard to get it through a roof. Derrick Pitts, the chief astronomer at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, as always sir, great thanks for your time.

PITTS: Thank you Keith.

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