Like a lot of others who follow The Great Taboo, Allen Palmer had high hopes for Saturday night’s UFO panel discussion at the National Atomic Testing Museum in Las Vegas. After all, one of his five guests, former Blue Book officer Bill Coleman, promised a “blockbuster” revelation.
A muffled bang, but no harm done
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A muffled bang, but no harm done
|By Billy Cox|
What the retired Air Force colonel delivered was a riveting but long-publicized account of his attempts to chase a flying disc in 1955. But just as it appeared Coleman was ready to drop a bomb, the 89-year-old WWII veteran balked.
“I was absolutely certain he wanted to say something very important,” says Palmer, the Museum’s executive director. “But he decided at the last minute not to pull the trigger.
“He seems to be slightly troubled with that. There seems to be an inner tension with a duty not to violate a government trust. It’s a source of conflict with all of us,” adds the retired Navy officer.
Back in Indian Harbour Beach, Coleman admits he “pulled my punch.” Reason? “I was not challenged by the audience.” Meaning? “It was the usual crowd — people wanting to talk to me about what they experienced, about how they found little pieces of metal in their chest and nose and crap like that.
“Rest assured, I met a lot of fine people there, particularly the ones who organized it. I just wanted to talk to people who would be able to comprehend what I was saying. But it was more like the people in the audience wanted me to listen to them,” says the USAF’s former chief PIO. So I just said to hell with it, maybe I’ll take it to the grave.”
Well, goodbye to all that. But judging from the scant media reflections on the event, Palmer and the Museum did themselves no harm Saturday night. The panelists had all the right credentials, and although they may not have raised the discussion bar, it was a smart idea in a mainstream forum, which is exactly what this field needs.
And there was also healthy tension between former Army colonel John Alexander, whose book UFOs: Myths, Conspiracies and Realities argues the phenomenon is real, but the military isn’t hiding anything, and Charles Halt. Halt is a key character in the alleged 1980 UFO incursion near an air base in the UK. The retired lieutenant colonel directly challenged Alexander’s position by declaring a clandestine government agency was keeping UFO data in lockdown. But as Palmer pointed out, Halt failed to name names. “Maybe he’s right, maybe that’s the case,” Palmer tells De Void. “But if you’re going to make that case, you should be able to produce the evidence for it.”
Palmer says he hopes to offer the Museum as a forum to sift through whatever evidence may be out there. He’ll host a SETI discussion with radioastronomer Seth Shostak on Nov. 3. Some 220 listeners — a standing-room crowd — turned out Saturday night.
“What I’m interested in is the process of investigating UFOs, the science behind it, taking a good honest look at the 5 percent of unknowns and applying science and physics to this thing,” Palmer says. “I’m not interested in the goofy stuff or personal attacks.” Long range goal: “This is one of the great fertile fields of public interest, and I’d like to see it used as a way to get young people interested in science and math and physics.”
Takers? The National Atomic Testing Museum is easy to find.
Continue Reading . . .
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