Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Breaking The Oath [Re UFO Activity at Nuke Missile Sites]

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By Billy Cox
De Void
Colonel Fred Meiwald
     Frederick Meiwald’s obituary in the Las Vegas Journal-Review last August was brief but distinguished. During a 28-year military career that included posts with Strategic Air Command and Space Command, he earned the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters and the Joint Service Commendation Medal. What it didn’t include, not surprisingly, was Meiwald’s eyewitness to a controversial nuclear-missile shutdown at Malmstrom Air Force Base in March 1967. Because he was clearly uncomfortable with the conversation.

News of the colonel’s demise at 70 was widely circulated late last month by 341st Strategic Missile Wing colleague and retired USAF Capt. Bob Salas. Salas and Meiwald were working side by side at an underground launch control facility when the Minuteman ICBMs began going offline, simultaneously with topside security chatter of a mobile unit reporting UFO activity outside the front gate. Both Salas and Meiwald were ordered to sign non-disclosure agreements by the USAF Office of Special Investigation. The men would eventually go their separate ways and talk no more about it for nearly 30 years.

But the potentially catastrophic event shook Salas to his core. He became an activist for UFO transparency and dared authorities to prosecute him for violating his security oath. He wrote a book in 2005 called Faded Giant, and spoke up in high-profile venues such as Larry King Live and at a 2010 National Press Club conference in Washington. Salas was also moved to seek out his old LCF supervisor, and connected with Meiwald on the phone in 1996.

In that recorded conversation, which accompanied Salas’ post, Meiwald was relatively laconic. Salas did most of the talking as he walked Meiwald back through events as he remembered them. Though Meiwald affirmed most of Salas’ statements, he didn’t appear to share his former colleague’s enthusiasm for stepping up. Until the end, that is, when he volunteered something Salas didn’t know: “I remember the two guards that had gone out to one of the sites finally got back scared to death and we had to relieve them of duty … They had gone out to one of the sites, one of the LFs, and on the way back they lost radio contact, and they ended up having to send them back to base early. I’m not sure what happened but I don’t think they ever returned to guard duty.”

It’s hard to blame Meiwald for not joining Salas’ public platform. One critic of the Malmstrom incident posted an online rebuttal called “Americans, Credulous, Or The Arrogance of Congenital Liars & Other Character Defects.” Said debunker refers to those who disagree — with Salas at the top of the list — as “fools (and) idiots.” Who needs the abuse?

Still, just last year, Meiwald agreed to a taped phoner with UFOs & Nukes author/investigator Robert Hastings. He was, as usual, circumspect and possessed of the manner of a career officer who has been ordered not to talk.

“All I can say is something happened and, to the best of my knowledge, Bob Salas has stated what he believes (to be) true and I’ve supported the majority of what he has said,” Meiwald told Hastings. “I have read his book and (although) I can not, you know, support what other folks are saying, I know what happened at (LCF) Oscar. I know that Bob has relayed what happened at Oscar very accurately. But, what goes beyond that, I am not in a position to even express a viewpoint. I certainly can’t question somebody else’s judgment. Uh, I think it would be best if I said no more.”

That Meiwald agreed to speak on the record at all, given his sensitivities, was a marvel.

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