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Examining The Files On UFOs

From: UFO UpDates - Toronto <ufoupdates.nul>
Date: Fri, 23 May 2008 19:20:00 -0400
Archived: Fri, 23 May 2008 19:20:00 -0400
Subject: Examining The Files On UFOs

Source: The Courier-Mail - Brisbane, Queensland, Australia


May 23, 2008

Examining The Files On UFOs
Stephen Hughes

The UK Government recently announced the release of UFO files
that have been collected over the past two decades. So the big
question is, does this new information contain evidence of alien
visitations? Do aliens really exist? Personally, I think that
the answer is no.

On close examination many UFOs actually turn into IFOs -
Identified Flying Objects, like birds, planes etc. But what
about those UFOs that can't be turned into IFOs - are they
evidence of alien visitation?

Although people have seen unexplainable lights in the sky
throughout history, UFOs are a relatively modern phenomenon.

We need to understand the UFO phenomenon in light of the Cold
War where it was common for the US and USSR to send high-flying
reconnaissance aircraft across their respective countries,
especially regions where nuclear-armed intercontinental
ballistic missiles reside.

The American and British military were only interested in UFO
reports in terms of threats to national security. In most cases
reports were not followed up as soon as it was ascertained that
there was no national security threat.

The UFO era officially began on June 24, 1947 when a pilot named
Kenneth Arnold reported seeing strange objects shaped like
boomerangs flying erratically some distance away from his plane.
Soon after, numerous green lights were seen in the vicinity of
military weapons establishment in New Mexico, which again were
thought to be foreign surveillance craft. The investigation of
these green lights was codenamed Project Twinkle.

A report concluded that the strange lights were natural
phenomena, some of which may have been related to meteors
streaking through the Earth's atmosphere.

The US Air Force collected UFO reports between 1952 and 1969 in
an exercise known as Project Blue Book. In 1966 the University
of Colorado was contracted to analyse the data which resulted in
a report, generally referred to as the Condon Report. In a
nutshell, this report concluded that all UFOs have a natural
explanation. In 1969 project Blue Book was officially shut.

With the torrent of data collected from numerous types of ground
and space-borne telescopes - optical, radio, X-ray, UV, infra-
red, high energy - surely a spaceship flying in the vicinity of
the Earth would be detected. How come alien pilots always manage
to steer clear of the field of view of every telescope? Do they
have some kind of special radar enabling them to know which
regions of space are being peered at?

A closely related subject to UFOs is crop circles - these are
still UFOs, but in this case they are Unidentified Farm Objects.
Many of these are now known to be fakes produced using string,
planks of wood and lawn rollers. There are websites that offer a
beginners guide to making crop circles. However, some are not
fakes and are probably caused by an atmospheric phenomenon akin
to mini tornados, rather than the impress of a giant spaceship.

There may be a strong psychological component to UFO sightings.
It is well known that people can genuinely misinterpret what
they see.

I have personally experience of this. Once I pulled one of my
children's mats out from under the bed and "saw" a large spider
run down the mat. On closer inspection I saw that the "spider"
was in fact a small car made from blocks of Lego. Spiders do
often live under beds and I interpreted what I saw based on

Another fact worth noting - in the two years following the
Stephen Spielberg film Close Encounters of the Third Kind, the
number of reported UFO sightings doubled. Perhaps the same will
happen with yesterday's release of the Indiana Jones movie.

Sometimes UFOs are created by the way we process visual
information. There is a phenomenon known as autokinesis in which
a celestial object, for example, a star, appears to move in the
sky when it is virtually stationary. This usually occurs when
the object is well away from a reference point such as a tree or

The UK reports released are more of the same. There is the case
of a group of people at a pub seeing a mysterious object with
red and green lights descending from space in the direction of
Gatwick Airport.

The reports do contain a very interesting account by two
experienced air traffic controllers who saw a brightly lit
object land on a runway and take off again, vertically and at
high speed.

In recent years fascinating experiments have been done on
massive electric sparks that jump between the tops of
thunderclouds and space known as sprites and blue jets.

From my research I think that it is possible that many of the
true UFOs are manifestations of an electrical discharge
phenomenon related to electrical connections between the Earth
and space.


Dr Stephen Hughes is a lecturer at the School of Physical and
Chemical Sciences, QUT.

[Lead from Stuart Miller @ http://www.alienworldsmag.com]

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