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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2008 > May > May 14

Air Controllers Reported UFO: British Papers

From: UFO UpDates - Toronto <ufoupdates.nul>
Date: Wed, 14 May 2008 08:05:00 -0400
Archived: Wed, 14 May 2008 08:05:00 -0400
Subject: Air Controllers Reported UFO: British Papers

Source: The Chicago Sun-Times - Illinois, USA


May 13, 2008

Air Controllers Reported UFO: British Papers

From Associated Press

LONDON - The men were air traffic controllers. Experienced, calm
professionals. Nobody was drinking. But they were so worried
about losing their jobs that they demanded their names be kept
off the official report.

No one, they knew, would believe their claim an unidentified
flying object landed at the airport they were overseeing in the
east of England, touched down briefly, then took off again at
tremendous speed. Yet that's what they reported happened at 4
p.m. on April 19, 1984.

The incident is one of hundreds of reported sightings contained
in more than 1,000 pages of formerly secret UFO documents being
released Wednesday by Britain's National Archives. It is one of
the few that was never explained.

The air traffic controllers' "Report of Unusual Aerial
Phenomenon" was filed from an unspecified small airport near the
eastern coast of England.

The men, each with more than eight years on the job, described
how they were helping guide a small plane to a landing on runway
22 when they were distracted by a brightly lit object
approaching a different runway without clearance.

"Everyone became aware that the object was unidentified," their
report said. "SATCO (code name for a controller with 14 years
experience) reports that the object came in 'at speed,' made a
touch and go on runway 27, then departed at 'terrific speed' in
a 'near vertical' climb."

The incident is one of the more credible in the newly public
files because it was reported by air traffic controllers, said
David Clarke, a UFO expert who worked with the National Archives
on the document release.

"They were absolutely astonished," he said. "It was a bright,
circular object, flashing different colors, and after it touched
down it disappeared at fantastic speed. The report comes from
very qualified people, and it's one of the few that remained

But while there are some unexplained cases in the papers, there
is no reported instance in which the Ministry of Defense found
any evidence of alien activity or alien spacecraft, said Clarke,
who nonetheless expects conspiracy theories about a UFO cover-up
by the British defense establishment to persist.

"The Ministry of Defense doesn't have any evidence that our
defenses were breached by alien craft," Clarke said. "They never
found one, no bits of one. That's all we can say."

Clarke said the released documents, dealing with the late 1970s
and early 1980s, are the first batch in a series that will be
made public in the next few years.

The National Archives is releasing the files because of numerous
freedom of information requests seeking information about the
government's UFO reports. Officials said that names of many
individuals had been blacked out to protect their privacy and
that the entire files had been reviewed to make sure their
release did not compromise national security.

Ministry of Defense officials indicate in the files that UFO
reports were only investigated to make sure no enemy aircraft
had illegally entered British airspace. This was crucial during
the Cold War when Russian planes posed a threat.

Officials said they did not try to solve UFO riddles once an
enemy attack had been ruled out.

The vast majority of UFO reports come from members of the public
who see strange things in the sky and jump to the conclusion
that a UFO is involved even though there are logical
explanations for what they observe, experts said.

"The most common things are aircraft lights, bright stars and
planets, satellites, meteors, airships and things like that,"
said Nick Pope, another UFO expert who helped the Ministry of
Defense investigate the phenomenon.v That was the case when a
number of people leaving a Tunbridge Wells pub one night
reported seeing a strange craft "with red and green" lights,
according to the released documents.

Asked by police where the object seemed to be traveling, the pub
crawlers said it appeared to be heading for London's Gatwick
Airport. It didn't take a scientist to figure out it was a
commercial plane making a routine approach.v

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