Friday, December 07, 2007

UFOs Are With Us Again

Flying Saucer (The Invaders)
By Keith Gebers
The Elk Grove Citizen
12-7-07

     Great Scott, UFO’s are back in the news.

Now the Unidentified Flying Object chase is taking a different approach. It’s been modernized. Former pilots and officials are calling for a new United States UFO probe. Maybe the old theories of aliens from outer space will be relegated to the background as the search for unidentified flying objects takes on a new tack.

Today, former military aviators along with others say UFOs can pose a national security problem.

Panelists from seven countries, which included former senior military personnel, created the recommendation for the government to reopen its UFO investigation. The international panel said the United States government could face dangers if such a suggestion is ignored. They cited 9/11, saying it is unwise to ignore radar returns, which cannot be associated with conventional aircraft such as airplanes and helicopters.

The first “modern” sighting of a UFO came in 1947 when pilot Ken Arnold noticed “a formation of flying discs in skies above the Pacific Northwest.” Within days hundreds of sighting of unidentified flying objects were reported, ranging from cigar shaped objects to high-speed triangles darting about the skies. Flying saucers or discs remained the most reported objects.

Over 12,618 UFO sightings were investigated from 1947 to 1969 by the Air Force in a program called Project Blue Book. Finally, the government stated the sightings were no threat. But stories continued with various themes including reports from people who said they were actually abducted by aliens from outer space. Even former presidents Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter claimed to have sighted UFOs.

Since Project Blue Book was concluded the UFO reports have continued. In South America and elsewhere there have been moving pictures taken of unidentified flying objects streaking across the sky.

Personally, I grew up interested in the phenomena, although I never saw a UFO. When I was a teenager I amused myself thinking a rival country, such as Russia, possibly sent them aloft. Then I thought perhaps they were a natural phenomena created naturally by atmospheric conditions. After all, there are many things nature hands down to us that we have not discovered the “why’s and how’s” yet.

Most of us are familiar with the many stories and films that have come out about other- world aliens, pictures ranging from “It Came From Outer Space” to “Girl From Mars.”

The first author to spell out the credibility of UFO’s was Donald Keyhoe, a former member of the Federal Aviation Administration. His book “Flying Saucers Are Real” was a sensation in the early 1950s. After all, he was a well-known military analyst as well as being a former government official, who toured the nation with transatlantic flier Charles Lindbergh. Few people remembers however, that he was also a prolific fiction writer, who penned tales of master-spy Eric Trent and also Dick Knight, who was blind by day but could see perfectly at night.

Personally, I still like the natural phenomena theory. But the recent panel, organized by a group dedicated to accepting credibility for unidentified flying objects has urged Washington to resume UFO investigations through the NASA or the Air Force.

Today, my teenage fantasy of a rival foreign power launching such objects has more credibility than it did in the late 1940s or 1950s. Former Federal Aviation Administration investigator John Callahan said the CIA in 1987 tried to hush up sighting of a huge lighted ball four times the size of a Jumbo jet. Other UFO believers say authorities often dismiss such sightings without proper investigations.

Investigation of UFOs may come full circle. It might be taxpayer expensive but it can also be fun.

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