COPYRIGHT DAVID CHERNIACK PROD. LTD.
WE WERE TALKING ABOUT THE ORDERS TO SHOOT IN 1952, ON THE TELEPHONE. DO YOU WANT TO TELL ME ABOUT THAT.
[00:37:39] Yeah. Everybody knows that 1952 was a banner year for UFO sightings, especially the summer of '52. Blue Book, Project Blue Book had more reports for '52 than any other year in its 20 year existence roughly.
[00:37:52] But in the summer of '52 there were sightings over the White House, over Washington, D.C., radar sightings, one of the biggest press conferences ever on July 29th about these sightings.
[00:38:03] And it only came to light recently when I was digging more deeply into things about '52 because of my interest in the Flatwoods monster case which was September 1952.
[00:38:15] I asked some associates for all the clipping I found find from 1952 and I was astonished to find that there were a number of clippings quoting air force officers saying pilots had been ordered to shoot down UFOs.
[00:38:31] And this caused such a stir that there were even letters to the president of the United States from the head of the American Rocket Society - a guy named Farnsworth - saying he thinks that's a terrible idea. That's not the way to welcome our visitors, if there are visitors coming here.
[00:38:45] And so that was the first thing. Several different articles, different guys quoted. Pilots have been ordered to shoot them down if they don't land when instructed to do so. And I can just see the cartoons, you know.
[00:38:57] The pilot saying: down! And the UFO going - (laugh) It's just crazy.
[00:39:03] But buried in this thing was a discussion with Gen. Roger Ramey, a major general by this time, the same guy who was connected with Roswell in '47.
[00:39:13] THE GUY WHO DID THE BALLOON PRESS CONFERENCE.
[00:39:15] Yeah. He had the big press conference, it's just a radar reflector-weather balloon combination. And now he was air defence command kind of thing and he is quoted in one newspaper as saying, we have scrambled jets after UFOs hundreds of time - hundreds of times - not just a few or several but hundreds of times.
[00:39:40] So as you start looking around you also discover an awful lot of airplane crashes, jet interceptor crashes in 1952 including three cases where pilots who had over a hundred missions in Korea, where they were dodging Migs after all, who came back and crashed.
[00:40:01] We also have a number of reports when you start looking in the New York Times and other places, little squibs about another plane goes down, ah where planes disappeared and the word disintegrated is used in several instances.
[00:40:17] Now I had already heard of six different cases after my lectures in which people told me quietly -this was not public discussion - that when they were in the military more planes had gone up than came back down, after chasing UFOs. Two go up, one comes back; three go up, two come back, that sort of thing.
[00:40:37] Now you know, once is one thing but when I hear six different independent stories - I don't use them in my lectures so there's no way they would know that I had heard these things before - if I've heard six there have to have been a heck of a lot more than that.
[00:40:51] So considering that 1952 was a very nervous year for the United States. We anticipated that Joe Stalin, now that he had airplanes for delivering nuclear weapons and had already tested several nuclear weapons, each one more powerful than the previous one, and that we were occupied in Korea in '52 there were a lot of people who expected him to attack the United States.
[00:41:14] I mean he trusted Hitler, that was a mistake. Why should he trust the United States, you know. So they were very nervous and this is where the ground observer corps was put into place. You know, like they're going to really save us. Hey, I just saw one going by, a Russian airplane! Get there in time, you know.
[00:41:30] So you put all this together and I think that there was as period of time in which we were almost at war with aliens, that is wanting to shoot them down. And they seemed to only react in self-defence, according to the stories I've heard.
[00:41:46] We attack. They say uh-uh we're not buying any of that kind of thing. And so - and I've heard stories, rumours out of the Soviet Union that they kept trying to shoot them down and that several of their boosters were clobbered on the pad later on in the space age. Now you say why would we want to shoot them down? Well to get hold of the technology I suppose and to prove that they couldn't fly over our territory without retaliation, you know. I'm the strong guy on the block kind of thing.
[00:42:17] So I don't know what's going on there but I do know it's been very hard to get accident reports, so-called accident reports, planes disappeared and all this sort of thing.
[00:42:29] But when you see the statements that UFOs are not a threat to the security of the United States, that's an official air force statement, you say, hey wait a minute. How about those pilots being told to shoot something down? You don't tell anybody to shoot something down unless he's a threat to the security of the country.
[00:42:46] And then when you throw into this picture one more thing. General Carroll Bolander -
[00:42:53] I WAS GOING TO ASK YOU ABOUT THE BOLANDER STATEMENT, YEAH
[00:42:55] General Carroll Bolander had been an engineer on the air force side of the lunar excursion module. And we landed on the moon in July of '69. And so his next assignment - he'd been working 12 hour days before that - he was asked to look at the UFO business because the Condon Report had come out earlier that year, January, suggesting that Project Blue Book be cancelled because it was not contributing anything to science.
[00:43:25] So Bolander was asked to review the situation. He had no previous involvement with UFOs so this is a completely disinterested, very competent individual. He was a brigadier general.
[00:43:35] WHY WAS HE ASKED … SITUATION AGAIN?
[00:43:38] Because the government wanted to take a position. The Condon people had said one thing. Let's have one of our guys look at this situation and what's going on here.
[00:43:49] So his recommendation was what resulted in the closure of Project Blue Book.
OH I DIDN'T REALIZE THAT.
[00:43:52] -as a matter of fact.
[00:43:54] It came out in October and it was closed in December. But buried in his discussion and I don't have all the attachments - I have the original discussion - is a statement that reports of UFOs which could affect national security are made in accordance with joint army-navy-air force publication 146, air force manual 55-11 and are not part of the Blue Book system. That's a shocking phrase.
[00:44:22] And two paragraphs later he says: if we close Project Blue Book the public won't have any place to report UFO sightings. However, as previously noted, reports which could affect national security would continue to be handled using the regulations established for that purpose.
[00:44:39] Now I located General Bolander when I got a copy of this memo and I talked to him. It was clear he understood exactly what he was saying. You know, if a UFO flies down the runway at a SAC base, Strategic Air Command base where nuclear weapons are stored, that's a national security problem, you know, and who cares what you see standing at your driveway watching a light go by in the sky. That doesn't matter.
[00:45:02] But for him to say this twice, the point was very, very clear. Now that is reinforced. If you look on the black vault website which has thousands of page of government documents on UFOs, the air force sent letters to John Greenwald who runs the site saying that we are no longer interested in UFOs. He's got several of these.
[00:45:30] However, John managed to get pilot manuals for our most advanced fighter planes, within the last three years, it says, in which it gives specific instructions what they are to do should they encounter an unidentified surface ship, an unidentified aircraft or an unidentified flying object.
[00:45:49] THEY DISTINGUISH BETWEEN UNIDENTIFIED AIRCRAFT AND UNIDENTIFIED FLYING OBJECT.
[00:45:52] Definite distinction between those two. So on the one hand they're saying, we're not interested but here's the instructions to the pilots, with our latest equipment. They're not flying Beechcraft now. They're flying F16s, F18s, etc.
[00:46:04] IT MAKES NO SENSE THAT THE ARMED SERVICES WOULD NOT BE INTERESTED IN ANYTHING THAT'S POTENTIALLY STRATEGICALLY COMPROMISING. IT MAKES NO SENSE WHATSOEVER.
[00:46:11] They wouldn't use the term UFO. They'd say uncorrelated targets.
[00:46:15] UNCORRELATED TARGETS. THAT'S A NEW TERM.
[00:46:18] William Moore with whom I worked very closely on Roswell once made a request of the Air Defence Command. I want all your reports of uncorrelated targets for a six month period.
[00:46:29] So he gets back a letter, very straight, saying, thank you for your request. As you know, there are search fees required for a response to such a request. Please sent your certified cheque. It was like $110,319 and one of my dreams has always been, what if somebody had sent a cheque? What would they have done? (chuckle)
[00:46:49] But the kicker here may be one of terminology. We don't call them UFOs anymore. They're interstellar alien craft maybe, you know.
[00:47:00] WHERE DO YOU FIGURE THAT, BECAUSE ISN'T THERE AN ARGUMENT THAT THIS STARTED TO HAPPEN AFTER THE ROBERTSON PANEL? DOESN'T THAT … KEVIN RANDALL'S BOOK ABOUT, IS IT BLUE FLY?
[00:47:15] Well there's ah - there are two different - Moon Dust.
[00:47:17] MOOD DUST, YEAH.
[00:47:20] And there is another project whose name -
[00:47:22] YEAH. WASN'T THIS POST-ROBERTSON PANEL THE REAL REPORTS - THE REAL GOOD REPORTS STARTED GETTING FUNNELLED NOT TO BLUE BOOK BUT SOMEWHERE ELSE. DIDN'T THAT START TO HAPPEN?
[00:47:32] I think it happened before the Robertson panel because '52 was before the Robertson panel. And clearly there was somebody doing something somewhere with these accounts of pilots chasing UFOs.
[00:47:45] OKAY, GOOD. LET'S MOVE ON. I THINK WE COVERED THAT ONE. Roswell - WHAT CAUSED YOU TO LOOK AT Roswell IN THE FIRST PLACE? IT WAS THE LATE '70s WHEN YOU BEGAN TO LOOK.
[00:47:59] Well it's a little more complicated than that.
[00:48:01] WHAT WAS THE IMPETUS? BECAUSE IT WAS LAYING DORMANT RIGHT?
[00:48:05] Yeah, you won't find anything. Frank Edwards talks about it and totally wrong about just about everything. And there's a book on the UFO wave of 1947 and by Ted Blocher and he mentions it as an obvious hoax. He just looked at newspaper articles in cities where he played and various reviews and stuff.
[00:48:25] It actually started in 1972. Talked to a forest ranger in California about his sighting and he said, you know, you ought to talk to my mom. She had a really good sighting down in New Mexico.
[00:48:36] So fine, an associate and I talked to his mom, Lydia Sleppie, and she told us about her sighting which was a good report. And then she mentioned that when she was working at a radio station in Albuquerque they had a call from their Roswell affiliate who said a saucer has crashed and they're going to send it to Wright Field. I want to dictate a story. And she was not a journalist; she was in accounting.
[00:49:03] But she handled the teletype machine. She was a good typist. So he's dictating and she's putting it on the teletype. And a bell rings and says, discontinue this transmission, FBI, and she tells him and he says, well I guess you better.
[00:49:16] So I -
[00:49:18] HOW IS THAT TECHNOLOGY POSSIBLE BY THE WAY? DID YOU EVER FIGURE IT OUT? DID YOU EVER LOOK INTO IT?
[00:49:21] Yeah. The kicker here is that New Mexico was the home of an enormous amount of classified research. Two of the three nuclear weapons labs are there. White Sands missile range is there. Kirkland Air Force base was the biggest employer in the state. Roswell was the home of the only atomic bombing group in the world.
[00:49:38] Surely the FBI was looking for spies and if there's one place you'd expect to find them it would be New Mexico. So what you want to do is make sure that nothing gets out that shouldn't get out. Inadvertent things happen. Once an airplane dropped an atomic bomb in New Mexico. It didn't go off fortunately.
[00:49:54] But it's not the kind of thing you want to broadcast, you know. If somebody put out a report on that, hey, no way, he'll say. So I think they were monitoring. The Cold War was heating up there already in '47.
[00:50:07] Anyway I talked to Lydia. She had some names. I tracked down several of these people. And I really ran up against a stone wall. One guy didn't remember anything. The other guy sounded like he remembered but wasn't going to tell me anything. What will I do now?
[00:50:20] So it lay dormant but in the back of my mind. Then I was at a television station in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to do three interviews prior to my lecture that night at Louisiana State University. And I'd done the first two and the third reporter was nowhere to be found. No cell phones back then and the station manager is giving me coffees, looking at his watch. He knew the person who brought me to the station, so he was embarrassed.
[00:50:43] You know, he knew I had other things to do and here this reporter isn't there. SO out of the blue he says, you know, the guy you oughta talk to is Jessie Marcel. And brilliant investigator that I am, I said, who's he? And he says, oh he handled the wreckage of one of those saucers you're interested in. He was in the military. What?!
[00:51:01] There's nobody else around. He was obviously being serious. It wasn't a joke. I said, well what do you know about him? Well he lives over in Homa, world ham radio buddies, great guy, you oughta talk to him. And then the reporter shows up.
[00:51:14] So there was a half hour window of opportunity. I was busy the rest of the day. The next day from the airport, mind you, I called information in Homa, Louisiana. I've been there since. At that time I had no idea where it was. A pretty big town actually. And got a number for Jessie Marcel. I called him. He told me his story but he didn't know the exact date.
[00:51:32] He was the base security intelligence officer and so forth. So what do I do with that? I file it. He said his picture was in papers all over the place and General Ramey told him not to say anything.
[00:51:44] Okay, a few months later I'm in Bemidji, Minnesota. And after a lecture at Bemidji State College a couple comes up to me very quietly. We'd had a full house and it turns out, we find out later, they'd gone out and then came back.
[00:51:59] And have you ever heard anything about a saucer crash in New Mexico? Well, yes. Tell me more. And they told me their story about a good friend of theirs had told them stumbling across a saucer, with bodies mind you. They didn't have a date either.
[00:52:13] THIS IS BARNIE BARNETT.
[00:52:16] Yes this is the Barnie Barnett story. Vern and Jean Maltase, they're both gone now I believe. I know Vern is. Okay, what am I going to do with that? Well I shared that the very next day, as it happens, with Bill Moore who was living in Minnesota at the time.
[00:52:31] Now Bill dug out a third story. In the Flying Saucer Review in England there was an article about an English actor who was driving across the country from L.A. to Philadelphia back - he could pin down the date because it wasn't a trip you made very often back then, as you can imagine. Hughie Green his name was and I talked to him by phone once when I was in England. He's dead now too.
[00:52:52] But his son lived in the States. Anyway in the article he heard on the radio about a crashed saucer in New Mexico. Expected a big deal in Philadelphia. Nothing But he could pin down the date. Bill went to the University of Minnesota Library, periodicals department. Early July, early July, there was the story with names of other people confirming what Jessie Marcel had told me.
[00:53:15] And in the next two years we managed to find 62 people in conjunction with that case.
[00:53:19] THAT'S GOOD. DID YOU EVER HAVE ANY IDEA WHAT KIND OF A RAT'S NEST YOU WERE OPENING UP? …(INTERRUPTION - LET ME STOP THE CAMERA)
[00:53:49] SO DID YOU HAVE ANY KIND OF NOTION AT ALL THAT YOU WERE GOING TO BE KICKING OFF A - I HESITATE TO USE THE WORD INDUSTRY, BUT A WHOLE BOOK SHELF OF -
[00:54:01] I had no idea when this began that I would still be working on it 27 years later.
[00:54:07] DEFENDING YOURSELF.
[00:54:09] Defending myself, yes, investigating, listening to the gripes from the nasty, noisy negativists and demolishing them as the case required. No, I had no idea. But I do know this.
[00:54:20] By 1980, Bill and I had talked to 62 people in conjunction with this case and it was finding them the hard way. This is before the Internet now. So you talk to somebody and you ask if he remembers where anybody is who was there at the time and you go on.
[00:54:34] Usually the wives had Christmas lists and that sort of thing. And of course a lot of people don't have much useful to tell you but if you get them in the mood of those times, sometimes they do remember more. This is standard human nature I've found.
[00:54:47] At first they say I don't remember, it's too long ago. And then you get them talking about other things that happened then and then, oh yeah, did you talk to - and so forth.
[00:54:57] But by 1980 we talked to 62 people. By '85 it was 92 people. And then I instigated the unsolved mysteries program on NBC. And they had put a toll free number in the other two segments of the program. A half hour was on Roswell and there were two other segments. They didn't have that toll free number during the Roswell segment for some reason for people who knew anything to call in.
[00:55:23] But people used the number and because I had instigated the program I got access to a lot of those people. And some of it was worthless but that's always the case. You know, I checked with an RCMP guy one time. I said when you have a high profile murder let's say, an event, criminal event, and you ask for public response, do you get any? Oh yeah, we get loads of calls, hundreds of calls.
[00:55:47] I said what percentage are useful? He said, oh maybe 2 or 3% but that's how we solve most cases. So you learn to look for the good stuff and the bad stuff just gets you closer to the good stuff.
[00:56:01] So when I talked to the respondents from that program, the Unsolved Mysteries program, that led to several more books from several more people and then we have this whole industry developing.
[00:56:14] And one of the things that sort of bugged me a little bit is to find that there were people telling false stories. You've got false witnesses. You've got investigators spewing out baloney based on nothing except their own bias and prejudice and ignorance.
[00:56:30] Philip Klass, the late Philip Klass, did a piece on Roswell, a short piece - 22 errors in like 3 or 4 pages. He hadn't talked to any of the witnesses, he hadn't done his homework. He just made it up as he went along I guess.
[00:56:45] And so there are people who start from the presumption that this couldn't have happened. If it had they would know about it. Everybody would know about it. Governments can't keep secrets, all this kind of baloney. And so you have to deal with these guys.
[00:56:59] And I bring to the table some peculiar background. I worked under security for 14 years. I visited 20 archives looking at documents. So I'm very - I wrote classified documents myself.
[00:57:11] YOU ARE A TENACIOUS RESEARCHER. NOBODY HAS EVER QUESTIONED THAT.
[00:57:15] It's my bag. Secondly, because of all the lectures I've given, more than 700, and all the question and answers, about 40,000 I figure by this time, I've had to think about the questions that people have that they really want to know about. It's not the data. They don't question any of the data I present. I present a lot of it. But they want to know why. Why would aliens come here? Why would the government cover up? A whole bunch - why did they land on the White House lawn, all these.
[00:57:39] They seem to like my answers because I've been forced to think of reasonable answers to these questions. Finally I was a high school debater, state championship team in New Jersey and so I'm fearless about taking on people, when I've done my homework. And I'm fast on my feet and I've known very bright people that I've worked for in some instance who will give you a good answer tomorrow.
[00:58:05] But if you're under fire in a question and answer period or on radio or television, you better have an answer now. And so ah that's another thing. I worked on more cancelled government sponsored advanced nuclear and space system development programs than anybody.
[00:58:22] When it comes to the it's impossible, you can't get from there arguments, I can tell what I've worked on. I can show, you know, I've worked on nuclear rocket engines this big, twice the power of Grand Coolie Dam. That impresses people.
[00:58:37] So what I found is that I keep coming back to Roswell. I've become a magnet for people. I've had new leads within the past three months. Now of course we're racing the undertaker and we lose the race most of the time of course. But I think it was a - an extraordinarily important event. Taken at face value after all, it says we know we're not alone in the universe. The government has known aliens are coming here. The governments have known that aliens are fallible. There was a crash after all. And has set up people to deal with it. That's sort of comforting too. Operation Majestic 12. And there again I've become a defender of the original documents.
[00:59:19] I've also shown that some of the later documents are fraud. I try to - equal opportunity investigator, you know.
[00:59:27] YOU'RE STANDING - I'M NOT GOING TO SAY YOU'RE STANDING ALONE IN YOUR DEFENCE OF MJ12 BUT YOU'RE PROBABLY IN TERMS OF MAINSTREAM UFOLOGY PRETTY WELL STANDING ALONE IN YOUR DEFENCE OF THE MJ12 DOCUMENT, THE ORIGINAL MJ12 DOCUMENTS EVEN AS BEING REAL AND NOT A FORGERY OR SOME (OVERLAP)..
[00:59:45] You may be right. The thing is that I have done my homework and my critics haven't. That's why I've gone to all these archives. That's why I talk to families of just about all the members. That's why my familiarity with government security and how it works and stuff comes into play.
[01:00:03] And again, persistence. There are a bunch of little teeny details that come up that people use as an excuse for saying they're fraudulent. The government says it did not use the security marking top secret restricted until 1972 and that's a 1954 document so obviously it's a fraud. (phone rings)
HANG ON ONE SECOND.
[01:00:36] OKAY GO ON.
[01:00:37] The people have said that security marking wasn't used, obviously the document is a fraud. If you look at the big report put out by the general accounting office - it's dull reading frankly, even some letters from me to them - but on page 80 buried in a report on having visited a facility, they went through documents, through top secret, including the date of the document we're interested in, rocket stuff. They didn't find anything about Roswell. However, they said, they noted several instances of the use of the ah security marking top secret restricted, even though they had been told - Majestic 12 in parentheses - that it was not in use at that time.
[01:01:17] Now I tried to get copies. They said they're still classified, Stan. I can't give you copies of that stuff. But I mean that's a trivial detail. And yet people were using that to say these documents are fraudulent when it wasn't true.
[01:01:31] OKAY, LET ME TAKE MY RUN AT IT BECAUSE MY RUN AT IT IS BASED ON RICHARD DOTY'S PERFORMANCE, MY RUN AT IT IS BASED UPON THE OVERALL CONTENT OF WHAT'S IN THE MESSAGES. IT'S ONE THING FOR AN EXTRATERRESTRIAL CIVILIZATION TO BE VISITING US FOR 25,000 YEARS. IT'S ANOTHER THING -
[01:01:55] It doesn't say that in the document. There's nothing about visiting us for 25,000 years.
[01:01:57] OKAY, ALRIGHT. BUT I REMEMBER I WAS ONE OF THE FIRST PEOPLE YOU GAVE THOSE ORIGINAL DOCUMENTS TO, IF YOU REMEMBER, WHEN I WAS DOING MY FIRST UFO FILM BACK IN '86 OR SO OR '87.
[01:02:06] That could be.
[01:02:09] YOU GAVE ME THOSE DOCUMENTS AND I LOOKED AT THEM AND I THOUGHT, HM, YOU KNOW, IT READS VERY WELL. I DON'T KNOW TOO MUCH ABOUT ANYTHING THAT MIGHT ORIGINATE FROM INSIDE BUT YOU KNOW, I LOOKED AT IT. OKAY, AN OBVIOUS REFERENCE TO PLACING SOMEBODY ON THE PLANET 2,000 YEARS AGO.
[01:02:31] There's nothing in there about that either.
[01:02:34] I SAW IT IN THE DOCUMENTS YOU GAVE ME.
[00:00:04] I DO RECALL IT WAS AN OBVIOUS REFERENCE TO A -
[00:00:07] There is nothing in the documents with which I am supportive of - oh boy - There's nothing in the three major documents - the Eisner briefing document, the Truman Forestall memo, and the Cutler Twining memo.
[00:00:23] NO THERE WAS ALSO- I THINK I ALSO GOT THE - WASN'T THERE A TRUMAN BRIEFING AS WELL AT SOME POINT?
[00:00:29] There were other documents surrounding this where people said all kinds of things. The only three I'm defending are the first three.
[00:00:39] And this - I tried my damnedest to show that those are fraudulent. My presumption based on the fact that Donald Menzel was listed as one of the members of the group was that they had to be fraudulent. He was the biggest noisiest negativist, anti-UFO guy around. A Harvard professor of astronomy doesn't need a high level security clearance to teach astronomy.
[00:01:04] So, and I had one run-in with him in which he said something foolish. Well I was speaking at Harvard to a reunion group of an engineering society. And I called him that day to invite him to my lecture. Dr. Menzel? Yes. My name is Stanton Friedman. I'm calling to see if you're going to attend my lecture tonight at the - wherever it was.
[00:01:26] Oh I know all about you. And I still don't know what that means. I've seen memos and letters. Ah you can't be a scientist and believe in UFOs, he says. So I laughed. That didn't make him happy and he started to rant a bit. I said, look Dr. Menzel, I didn't call to argue with you. I just didn't know whether you knew about the lecture because it's for a special group, not a general public lecture, and I wanted to invite you to come. Well of course I won't be there.
[00:01:54] So I told the story that night at the lecture. When I told that to Alan Hynek he was incredulous. He could never have told that at the lecture. So I didn't like Menzel and it was a stupid thing to say. You can't be a scientist and believe in UFOs.
[00:02:08] Okay, here his name is on this document. Obviously we can't go public with this. Somebody is going to say, I've gotcha. So I had to get permission. All these guys were dead. Interesting, the members of MJ12. The last one died just a couple of months before we got the Eisenhower briefing document. How convenient, one might say. That means you can't ask them one way or another.
[00:02:33] So I checked and it turns out that it required three different signatures for me to get a look at Menzel's papers at Harvard in the archives there, including one from his wife about an unpublished autobiography.
[00:02:49] I got a grant from the fund for UFO research. I went there and I discovered - I didn't know where to look. I didn't see anything. I had seen his papers down at the American Philosophical Society Library. There are hundreds of letters about UFOs.
[00:03:02] THIS IS THE ONE IN PHILADELPHIA?
[00:03:02] Yes. Yeah. I'd seen that file and didn't find much interesting. Well, some nasty stuff between him and various people. He said some - other things that didn't endear me to him.
[00:03:16] Anyway, I started - here's a file, JFK - John F. Kennedy. So -
[00:03:28] Being interested in Kennedy I thought, well here's a place to start. I didn't see the word UFO any place. And lo and behold, correspondence between him and Kennedy, whom he knew because Jack had been on the board of overseers at Harvard and his area of interest was astronomy so Menzel was his helper there.
[00:03:48] And here's Menzel writing him during the campaign of 1960 saying that he has more experience with the National Security Agency and its Navy predecessor, 30 years as of then, of anybody in the country. And when we are properly cleared to each other, I can tell you more about this great agency, and other comments like that.
[00:04:11] And then in his unpublished autobiography, he says he had a top secret ultra clearance with the CIA. He did classified work for 30 different companies. His income in retirement was greater from his consulting work than it was from his Harvard job.
[00:04:27] He was on the inside. Also, it turns out, he was a world Klass cryptographer and he taught cryptography, code breaking, code making and so on. He learned Japanese to help in breaking Japanese codes and stuff.
[00:04:40] So and then I saw a letter from Dr. Vanivar Bush who was named as one of the members of this group. There's a letter to Bush from Menzel's attorney thanking him for his contribution to the loyalty hearings that Menzel went through.
[00:04:58] THIS IS HUAC.
[00:05:01] No it was before that.
[00:05:04] Yeah. It turns out somebody had said Menzel was disloyal. And ah cited as examples he had led an eclipse expedition to Siberia and at a Russian-American Friendship Dinner in 1942 when the Russians were saving our butts, Menzel said nice things about the Russians. And a Soviet astronomer visited him at Harvard and his wife gave him nylon stockings to take back. Wow! These guys didn't even show up for the hearings.
[00:05:33] And Menzel describes it as the worst experience of his life, when I finally found the papers.
[00:05:37] SERVES THE SON OF A DOG RIGHT. YEAH, GO ON.
[00:05:40] Well the ah - it turns out Bush was the strongest testimony in support of Menzel. Now Bush didn't have to support anybody. He was top dog technology and science in Washington, no question, with Roosevelt turned to war and for some time after the war.
[00:05:55] So finding all of these things and recognizing that he had a top secret ultra clearance - he even applied for some patents for his NSA work. As a matter of fact I've got records of those - it was clear that Menzel belonged in this group. I also found close connections between him and several of the other members of the group.
[00:06:13] Now none of this is mentioned in an 8 page appreciation of him in Sky and Telescope after his death. So the UFO community was shocked when I published an article in the Centre for UFO Studies publication about Menzel. So that moved me forward to really dig into these documents.
[00:06:33] And one of the things that struck me was the cavalier way in which the critics went at the documents. Here's Philip Klass again writing me a challenging letter, perhaps I hadn't noticed that one of these documents was done in the large Pica type. But it should have been done in Elite type and he had 9 memos from the National Security Council to prove that. And he challenged me to provide any other genuine letters, memos, etc., a bunch of criteria.
[00:07:05] And he would, to encourage me to respond more quickly, pay me a hundred dollars each up to a maximum of ten of them. Well he'd never been to the Eisenhower Library of course. Typical Klassical approach to things.
[00:07:18] I had made many visits there. I had of course noted that there were at least three different typewriters used. I sent him 20, two of which he accepted. I was toying with him because I was going to the Eisenhower library anyway. And when I went there I looked for and picked up 14 other ones and sent him 14 and an invoice for a thousand dollars and he paid me.
[00:07:39] Now the crazy thing here is -
[00:07:41] … CAN AFFORD IT ..
[00:07:43] Certainly Klass could afford it. But the crazy thing here is the Eisenhower library at that time had 250,000 pages of national security council materials. To generalize from 9 to 250,000 is absurd. It's typical of the intellectual bankruptcy of the pseudo-science of anti-ufology.
[00:08:04] I mean, you know, if you're got 99 out of a hundred and they're all done on the same typewriter, probably the hundredth one is too, even if you don't have it. But it's funny, he told everybody about his challenge to me. Bill Moore got three copies from three different people of it and passed them on.
[00:08:18] Told nobody about paying me and then got mad when I included it in my final report on Operation Majestic 12 for the Fund for UFO Research.
[00:08:25] DID HE REALLY GET MAD?
[00:08:27] He sent me a lawyerly letter. His father had been a lawyer and you can't do that. You can't use it. Like he was going to sue me. So I wrote him back saying, Phil, you sent me the cheque. I Xeroxed it, I cashed it. It was good. I can do whatever I darn please with the Xerox copy. And I'm a good guy, I took out the bank numbers from the cheque when I published it.
[00:08:49] But I mean this is the kind of silliness and it really is silly. It's not intellectually honest. The garbage that goes on in the anti-MJ12 document (OVERLAP) trail.
[00:09:01] ALRIGHT. I THINK THE KEY THING IS THE ALBUQUERQUE POST MARK … THAT WAS SENT TO JAMIE SHANDERA.
[00:09:09] Oh I certainly think that had something to do with it. I mean -
[00:09:12] AND BILL MOORE'S CONNECTIONS WITH RICHARD DOTY AND THE -
[00:09:14] Well remember on the Cutler Twining memo that they had gotten a postcard which talked about Box 189, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, sent from New Zealand.
[00:09:26] And it was only afterward that they realized that the box in which they found the Cutler Twining memo was Box 189 which was funny really. They called me that very night. I don't think they created the documents.
[00:09:43] Incidentally, the paper that was used for the Cutler Twining memo has a water mark on it. Now you only see that if you go there and hold it up to the light. If you get a Xerox copy you won't see the water mark. And we checked with the company, Fox Paper in Wisconsin, and they made that only in bid lots. It wasn't available in stationery stores. The government bought loads of the stuff and in the right timeframe.
[00:10:05] So here was something you might think that would rule it out but it didn't. And yeah, what's important is it says: NSC MJ12 Special Studies Project. It doesn't say anything about UFOs granted.
[00:10:22] DEBUNKERS. IN GENERAL YOU'VE CALLED THEM NOISY NEGATIVISTS BUT NOT JUST THEM. I HAVE THIS THEORY THAT IN FACT, WELL THERE'S TWO THINGS. I THINK BOTH OF THEM HAVE FUNCTIONED - BECAUSE REALLY THERE'S BEEN TWO. I'M TALKING ABOUT THE MAJOR ONES LIKE I EXCLUDE SCHAEFFER, FOR INSTANCE. I DON'T THINK HE'S REALLY -
[00:10:48] Or Oberg or -
YEAH YEAH, I DON'T THINK THEY'VE CONTRIBUTED ANYTHING SIGNIFICANTLY TO THE DEBATE HISTORICALLY, UNLIKE MENZEL WHO ESSENTIALLY SET THE TONE FOR AN ENTIRE GENERATION OF SCIENTISTS.
[00:11:02] And in Russia. One of his books was translated into Russian.
[00:11:05] AND Klass WHO GODDAMN IT -
[00:11:07] Most successful propagandist in the United States over the last hundred years I believe. Single-handedly got both the scientific community and the journalist community to abandon any interest in flying saucers because he had taken care of it all. He had found nothing that couldn't be identified as prosaic. Trust him, he works for Aviation Week and Space Technology.
[00:11:26] And everybody said, fine Phil, we don't want to bother with this garbage. We'll leave it up to you. That's incredible, yes. I think he was being paid, if you want to know.
[00:11:36] SOME PEOPLE HAVE SPECULATED ON THAT OR SOME PEOPLE JUST SPECULATED THAT HE WAS GETTING THE PLUM ASSIGNMENTS FROM THE ARMED SERVICES.
[00:11:47] I don't know what is behind it but certainly the Church Report, Frank Church, Idaho senator, in about 1975, noted that many journalists were co-opted, if you will, by the CIA. Guys going to conferences were asked about what happened and so - Now Phil was a perfect candidate. He was trained in electrical engineering. He had worked for GE. He worked for Aviation Week and Space Technology which gave them a pulpit, if you will.
[00:12:14] He was a very fast typist, a very good writer. He was unmarried. He got married to avoid debating me when he was 60. We were supposed to debate in New York and that's the weekend he got married. So he was footloose and fancy free to go everywhere, to talk to anybody. And you couldn't ask for a better contact within the community.
[00:12:34] Not only to find out what the Russians were doing but to find out which of our guys were saying things they shouldn't be saying too. You know, it's a double edged sword there. And so I can't prove that he was being paid.
[00:12:50] I've talked to two different people. One says he saw him at the headquarters of the CIA in a cleared area. And another says he saw him at Air Force intelligence in a cleared area. Now what that means I'm not sure, but it certainly is suggestive, if you will.
[00:13:05] And I just found out today, as a matter of fact, that he had written a letter to the National Research Council, on August 15th, 1980 which was two weeks before I moved to Canada, warning them that I was coming here and that I would say there was a huge cover-up and I would - and saying all kinds of nasty things about me. I just heard about that today.
[00:13:28] Really underhanded, nasty. And he has made -he has done things like that before.
[00:13:34] HE WAS A NASTY GUY BUT SO WAS MENZEL. I MEAN MENZEL WAS - BY ALL ACCOUNTS MENZEL WAS, YOU KNOW, HE WAS EXTREMELY CRITICAL BEHIND THE BACKS OF HIS - EVEN HIS FRIENDS. AND NOT NICE PEOPLE EITHER OF THEM.
[00:13:49] I talked to somebody who knew Menzel at Harvard for 20 years, taught in the department.
[00:13:57] THIS IS UNDER SHAPPLY OR SHAPELY OR WHATEVER?
[00:13:58] Yeah during that timeframe. I asked my guy, I said look, you knew Menzel very well and he knew that Menzel did work for the government which Shapely didn't approve of incidentally.
[00:14:07] OH REALLY.
[00:14:07] No. He was ah a pinko. That was one of the things wrong with Menzel, according to these hearings, you see. He was associated with Shapely. And I asked him, I said, look, you knew Menzel quite well for a long period of time. How do you feel about his being on the inside knowing full well that there were bodies and wreckage in Roswell and so forth and yet debunking the whole business.
[00:14:35] And he said, he would have loved it. He had a big ego, everybody told me that, everything I looked at and all the people I talked to. He would love to have been on the inside and be able to thumb his nose at all these people. He really knew what was going on.
[00:14:50] And I hadn't realized when I started this that he had written science fiction.
[00:14:55] THAT'S INTERESTING. I DIDN'T KNOW THAT.
[00:14:56] He was the only one of the 12 members, the original group of MJ12 who would have been in a really good position to write debunking stuff. Having written science fiction, written popular books on astronomy - he'd written a couple - he was in the position - and his books influenced the Russians too.
[00:15:15] MIKE SWORDS TOLD ME - MIKE DOESN'T BELIEVE - AS YOU PROBABLY KNOW, MIKE DOESN'T BELIEVE THAT HE WAS ACTUALLY DOUBLE FACED ABOUT UFOs. MIKE BELIEVES THAT IT WAS HARLOW SHAPELY WHO ESSENTIALLY TOOK ALL - BECAUSE HE WAS A GRADUATE STUDENT UNDER SHAPELY AND HE SAID HE ESSENTIALLY TOOK HIS GRADUATE STUDENTS ASIDE ONE DAY AND SAID, LOOK, I COMMISSION YOU. IT IS YOUR JOB TO FIGHT IRRATIONIALISM WHEREVER IT IS ENCOUNTERED.
[00:15:44] I don't know where Mike got that from. But Menzel and Shapely -
[00:15:47] OUT OF THE PHILADELPHIA LIBRARY.
[00:15:50] Menzel and Shapely, if you go to the Harvard Library - Mike didn't unfortunately - to look at the Menzel papers. I checked on that. Menzel and Shapely didn't think alike at all. By this time, Menzel had stature of his own by far. And as a matter of fact, Shapely was totally against being involved in government research and Menzel did loads of it.
[00:16:12] Menzel took an engineering approach to the thing. I've seen the correspondence. There was a telescope built by Harvard down in South Africa, Southern Skies Observatory - and you could see how critical Menzel was that Shapely hadn't done things right on the engineering into getting this thing so it could be anywhere's near as accurate if it could have been if they'd had the footings right and done all the other things.
[00:16:35] So Menzel was much less of a theoretician and much more independent and much heavier involvement in the government. Remember, Menzel was not only a lieutenant commander during the war but after the war he was in the naval reserve and head of naval reserve communications unit number 1 at Cambridge and was there for many years after that.
[00:16:56] So he was doing classified work all along the way here which Shapely didn't approve of. Shapely would not have gotten a clearance. So I think that that story is concocted that has nothing to do with the real world.
[00:17:10] OKAY. LET ME JUST REFRAME A LITTLE BIT. (BACKGROUND TALK)
HOW DO YOU RATE HIS OVERALL IMPORTANCE IN THE HISTORY OF THE UFO PHENOMENON, DESTRUCTIVELY OF COURSE. HOW DO YOU RATE IT?
[00:17:40] I'd say he was truly a major figure in steering academics away from UFOs. Now Hynek was almost as bad because the thinking was, look, if there was anything to this Hynek would have said so a long time ago and certainly Menzel made clear he didn't think there was anything to this.
[00:18:00] Hynek was basically an apologist ufologist. Menzel was a nasty, noisy negativist but he wasn't apologizing to anybody. And one of the stupid things he said, Menzel for example, was all unexplained sightings are by poor observers.
[00:18:15] Now I know from reading his correspondence that he had a copy of Project Blue Book special report 14 which clearly shows that the better the quality of the sighting the more likely to be unexplainable. Just the reverse of what he was saying. So why would he make such a phoney statement if he didn't have an ulterior motive here?
[00:18:41] OKAY. OVERALL HOW WOULD YOU ON A SIMILAR VEIN, HOW WOULD YOU JUDGE THE ROLE - WHY HAVE SCIENTISTS BEEN SO SHY ABOUT INVESTIGATING THE UFO PHENOMENON, IN SIMPLE TERMS?
[00:19:03] I think most scientists are much more concerned about their position in the world and tenure. I've had so many of them say, well I might get one of my grad students to look at the sample, but of course you can't use my name.
[00:19:16] They lack guts, they lack courage. They like tenure, they like power. They're in a good situation, lifetime. Tenure is kind of neat. Not many of us get tenure. When you're (unclear) … I know you don't, because I was there. (chuckle)
[00:19:32] Secondly, I think there's a syndrome at work here. .These are people who take great pride in their knowledge of what's important, especially in their own field of course.
[00:19:40] If aliens were visiting Earth, that would be important. Nobody denies that. However if it was important they would know about it and they don't, so they're not going to waste their time on this garbage subject. And it's a self-fulfilling prophesy.
[00:19:52] And the same thing applies to the journalists. New York Times, Washington Post, they have to admit they'd ignored the biggest story of the millennium for umpteen years and that they weren't going to waste their time on something that turned out be important. That's a big admission. That doesn't tell you good things about these people. So many people - you know, Max Planck said it best. He said new ideas come to be accepted. He was a great physicist.
[00:20:19] New ideas come to be accepted, not because their opponents come to believe in them but because their opponents die and a new generation grows up that's accustomed to them. Now this is true incidentally, even though the polls show the greater the education the more likely to believe in UFOs and two-thirds of engineers and scientists involved in research and development activities do think that they're real.
[00:20:42] Now most of them are kind of like a class I was in at a college, about a hundred students. I said I want information from you but I want you to vote with your hands and with your eyes closed and your instructor and I will count the votes. I don't want you to be influenced by the other people in the class.
[00:20:58] Okay. It turns out that 80% of them thought most people didn't believe in UFOs. And 80% of that group did believe in UFOs. But your behaviour, whether it's a scientist or a witness or a journalist is dependent on your perception of how other people will respond. And if you think they're going to laugh, you're not going to get involved.
[00:21:21] How many professors have guts enough to sponsor a PhD thesis. There have been only been about a dozen on UFOs.
[00:21:29] GOOD POINT. OKAY. LET ME REFRAME.
[00:21:48] YOU'VE SAID SOMETHING ABOUT I THINK THE IMPORTANCE OF FLYING SAUCERS IN THE HISTORY OF SCIENCE, YOU SAID FLYING SAUCERS FINISH THE JOB -
[00:22:04] That Copernicus -
[00:22:06] PICK IT UP FROM THE BEGINNING
[00:22:08] Yeah. When it comes to trying to evaluate how scientists respond to the question of flying saucers, it seems to me that flying saucers finish the job that Nicolas Copernicus started of taking man, mankind, earthlings, out of the centre of the universe.
[00:22:26] You remember old Nick. In 1543 a book was published that he'd written years before but didn't have guts enough because he knew it would get him into trouble, to publish, in which he had the gall to suggest that the Earth was not the centre of the universe.
[00:22:40] And he moved it over one step. .The sun is the centre of the universe and the book was banned for 300 years by the guys in white coats, prayer robes in the Catholic church, as it happens.
[00:22:51] Now we have a new generation of guys in white coats. Now they're lab coats and this takes them out of the centre of the universe. You see, scientists consider themselves at the top of the mountain. This is the cream of creation here. And if they don't know what's going on they lose their status. Too bad.
[00:23:13] I DON'T UNDERSTAND HOW SCIENTISTS ARE SO WOEFULLY UNAWARE OF THE HISTORY OF SCIENCE. I MEAN YOU FIND HUGE APPEALS TO THE FINALITY OF -
[00:23:27] It's impossible, they say!'
[00:23:30] THE FINALITY OF PHYSICAL LAW. THIS IS FINAL. THIS IS THE LAST STATEMENT, YOU KNOW. NEWTON COMES ALONG AT THE END OF THE 19TH CENTURY. THIS IS THE LAST STATEMENT. THEN EINSTEIN COMES ALONG. THIS IS THE LAST STATEMENT. AND THESE ARE JUST MODELS OF REALITY. THEY'RE APPROXIMATIONS, INCREASINGLY BETTER APPROXIMATIONS BUT THEY CERTAINLY DON'T GIVE THE WHOLE PICTURE AS ALBERT EINSTEIN'S LATER LIFE DEMONSTRATES.
[00:23:56] I DON'T UNDERSTAND HOW SCIENTISTS ARE SO UNAWARE OF THE HISTORY OF THEIR OWN …
[00:24:00] They're the new priesthood, scientists are. That's really what it boils down to. They have a privileged place in our society. They can pass themselves off as part of the scientific community that provides all the goodies, you know, whether it's the electronics technology or the atom bomb, or all kinds of things, you want to call those goodies.
[00:24:23] But they don't need to know anything about those. I've done a lot of Klassroom appearances on campuses where there are professors there, seminars, colloquium, that sort of thing. And I find they are woefully ignorant. And I make a point, especially if I've been warned that somebody is going to give me a hard time when I've finished, of talking about things I know they know nothing about - nuclear rockets, electromagnetic submarines, how much acceleration you can stand and all this.
[00:24:49] By the time I'm finished they're going to back up a little bit. And so what I find is they're quite ready to express an opinion on a subject about which they know little because they don't realize that there's a lot to know about that subject and especially in my case, I don't have a PhD. Well, what kind of a scientist can he be?!
[00:25:11] When I first met Dr. J. Alan Hynek his first question was: how come you didn't get your PhD, you know. So these are people who don't have any responsibility for really making a contribution. They publish, they - or if they don't,' they perish, and they teach their classes. And they've got a good deal going.
[00:25:32] But in terms of what do they have to provide for society, they don't even had to provide explanations that people can understand about their work. And so I'm not a big believer in theory. Theory is no replacement for reality. And if you study the history of science you see over and over again each generation thinks it knows all there is to know and you're just moving the decimal point out a little ways.
[00:25:56] And the next generation comes along and shows that they were wrong. They hadn't realized their own limitations. And there's a line I use in most of my lectures. I say that technological progress comes from doing things differently in an unpredictable way. The future is not an extrapolation of the past. A laser isn't just a better light bulb.
[00:26:16] The nuclear rockets I worked on aren't just better chemical rockets. Entirely different physics in both cases. So people who have been proud of their knowledge have trouble acknowledging, gee I don't know anything about that. It's easier to reject it than it is to admit one's ignorance.
[00:26:35] I'm playing amateur psychiatrist here obviously, but I've run across this so much in my own life.
[00:26:42] SO PREVALENT. LAST THING … LET'S COVER SETI JUST IN GENERAL TERMS. I MEAN WHAT IS YOUR OBJECTION TO THE PREMISE OF SETI.
[00:27:15] I object to SETI because it's not based on science. It's based on a whole bunch of assumption having no basis in fact. It assumes that there's intelligent life out there, that it's stuck at the level of radio, we with a hundred years of technology can deal with signals coming from somebody who might be a million years ahead of us.
[00:27:32] Secondly assumes no colonization and no migration. An important term in the Drake equation is the life of a civilization. But what if it colonizes and then that group colonizes so you could have people all over the place.
[00:27:46] Third, it puts them in a very exalted position. They say they're looking for extraterrestrial intelligence but they totally reject the UFO data. They know nothing about it. Look at their papers. I read their books. They won't read mine. I've had direct encounters with these guys and ah they know nothing about the subject.
[00:28:04] I talk about five large scale scientific studies. They don't talk about any of them. Their knowledge is about the level of the National Enquirer and Weekly World News.
[00:28:13] So SETI is a - is an effort to maintain job status for astronomers who can't find something else to do and want to excite us with the wonders of the universe. We're not the crown of creation which is what their assumption is. We're more like the gorillas in a nature preserve in Africa who have no idea what's going on outside the preserve.
[00:28:36] SETI I call Silly Effort To Investigate.
[00:28:41] GOOD. THANKS. (BACKGROUND TALK) THE WHOLE IDEA OF WHISTLE BLOWERS … LET'S DO IT QUICKLY AND IN GENERAL…
[00:29:08] I've looked into a lot of whistle blower testimony from a lot of different people because people are always asking me about these things so I have a requirement that I investigate or say I don't know anything and I don't like to say that anymore than I have to.
[00:29:21] And I can't find any that's very convincing from any of these people. There doesn't seem to be any push for substantiation. And some of the people will say, well since the government lies and covers up, the reason we can't find verification of what they say about themselves is the government has covered it up.
[00:29:42] And I say where's the guy's diploma? I call, I check, I do a lot of checking. People get mad at me. You don't believe him? He was so sincere. Sincerity is not the test of truth, as most women will be able to inform you very quickly.
[00:29:56] They hear a lot of that. There are con men all over the place. So I'm not a big fan of most of the whistle blower society. I've been able to show that several are absolute frauds and others are most probably fraudulent.
[00:30:11] Now there are people who provided testimony at the big disclosure project who I do accept - former military people - Mr. Salis up at Mounstrom Air Force base, for example, and others, who I think are honestly telling the truth and they have documents to back them up.
[00:30:26] I mean if a guy says he has a degree, I want to see the diploma or I want the university to say he's got it. If he says he served here, his DD214s, discharge papers, ought to show it. And so I'm a sceptic. I have a big gray basket. Everything goes in the gray basket first, not black, not white, maybe. But doesn't get out of there on the yes side until I've got some evidence to back it up.
[00:30:51] PERFECT. OKAY. ANYTHING ELSE?
No. What are we having for lunch?