Monday, September 12, 2005

Hellyer: "UFOs Are Extraterrestrial Visitors . . . The United States Knows All About It and Are Covering It Up"

Paul Hellyer Cropped
Hellyer sets sights on skies

By John Ward, CP
The London Free Press

     OTTAWA -- Paul Hellyer, a onetime federal cabinet minister and a political chameleon who went through Liberal and Tory colours before founding two political parties of his own, has a new cause -- UFOs.

     Hellyer is to be a featured speaker at a UFO conference in Toronto later this month and organizers are making much of his credentials as a former defence minister in the Pearson administration 40 years ago.

     Skeptics are, well, skeptical.

     The 82-year-old Hellyer says he believes not only that UFOs are extraterrestrial visitors, but that some governments -- the United States at least -- know all about it and are covering up.

     He says he believes American scientists have re-engineered alien wreckage from a supposed UFO crash at Roswell, N.M. in 1947 to produce modern technical marvels.

     "I believe that UFOs are real," he said in an interview. "I'll talk about that a little bit and a bit about the fantastic coverup of the United States government and also a little bit of the fallout from the wreckage, by that I mean the material discoveries we have made and how they've been applied to our technology."

     Hellyer was once a political star. He was first elected to the Commons in 1949 at the age of 25, at that time the youngest person ever to win a seat.

     He says his conviction that UFOs are real arose from reading in recent years, not from anything gleaned from secret archives during his time in office.

     Organizers of the MUFON conference -- the name is an acronym for the Mutual UFO Network -- see Hellyer's participation as giving legitimacy to the cause.

     "Mr. Hellyer's involvement will increase the impact of the symposium," says a conference news release.

     Does Hellyer feel he's being used?

     "I think they are trying to make the most of my appearance."

     His participation is exasperating for David Gower, a spokesperson for Skeptics Canada, a group dedicated to debunking paranormal claims.

     "This sort of thing is a big feather in their cap, to come across people like him," says Gower, who is dismissive of the whole UFO mystique.

     "There's no convincing evidence that can be anything other than personal anecdotes or allegations that can't be proven," he said.

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