This wouldn’t be complete without reference to Roswell. I don’t wish to say too much about the Roswell, N.M. case (July 1947), other than to point out that the then US Army Air Force admitted publicly, in the media, in newspapers, on radio, that they had captured one of those mysterious (and only recently sighted the modern UFO era was just weeks old) flying discs. No amount of back-pedalling can alter that now historical fact. It’s on the record. Look it up yourself!
I’m in a bit of a quandary about which UFO era is the best for mining. Ordinarily I’d say the earlier the better in that contamination is limited or reduced. Thus, the first (or close to the first) visual sighting or the first (or near first) physical trace case or the first (or second or third) this or that. Alas, that means going back to say the first five to ten years of the modern era 1947-1957. Witnesses and associated evidence has been diminished over the interval between then and now, even if original documentation still exists. Latter eras are better, but recent cases have a greater chance of having been influenced by what has come before. All else being equal, I’d mine those first ten years, but that’s me.
Do I have the smoking gun? No, otherwise I’d be booking my flight to Stockholm to receive the Nobel Prize! Does the smoking gun exist in the raw unknowns’ data? I don’t know, but it doesn’t hurt for it to be combed through again.
So, why aren’t scientists jumping at the chance to prove the ETH? Why no serious academic study of the phenomena. I mean there’s probably a Nobel Prize at stake, just waiting for that scientist, or team of scientists, to boldly go and prove the ETH. Well, it’s basically because the entire subject of alien visitations, whether UFOs or ancient astronauts, have been hijacked by extreme elements the lunatic fringe. Thus, the field has achieved a high ‘giggle’ or ‘silly season’ reputation. Newly minted academics, looking to establish themselves as bona-fide serious scientists, ingrain themselves with their peers (who largely control promotions, funding, etc.). That means, they tackle serious topics not ‘giggle’ factor and ‘silly season’ topics, unless they want their careers nipped in the proverbial bud. And so, in public at least, you tend to get attitudes along the lines of ‘everybody knows that it’s nonsense’, ‘it can’t be, therefore it isn’t’ or ‘don’t confuse me with facts, my superior’s mind is made up therefore my mind is made up’. And so it’s a vicious circle. Only serious scientific study will remove the ‘silly season’, ‘giggle’ factor; but the ‘silly season’, ‘giggle factor’ prevents serious scientific study.
Anyway, there are two sides to this situation! All the government secrecy and secrecy has well and truly been documented – could come unstuck, could be immediately negated, if an extraterrestrial UFO lands in Central Park (or equivalent). So, why doesn’t said extraterrestrials so land with a ‘take me to your leader’?
Firstly, there is obvious danger in interpreting / comprehending / understanding an alien mind-set or psychology or behaviour. I mean intelligent human mind-sets / psychology / behaviour is hardly a rigorous science. If what makes us tick is problematical, what hope do we have understanding, even up to an equal degree, intelligent aliens?
All of which brings me to possible motives for an alien race(s) to come calling and stick around. There’s thousands of sci-fi stories, films, TV shows, even academic texts dealing with this. Perhaps one or more of the following makes sense.
Firstly, we have tourism. That’s quite comprehensible to us.
Secondly, and most likely IMHO, we have a scientific (experimentation, observation, curiosity, specimen gathering, etc.) rational.
Thirdly, and probably most common in the sci-fi literature, Earth is ‘target earth’ for proposes of colonization, war, invasion. They want our resources, even if not our women!
There’s the possible motive central to diplomatic and foreign relations. They want us to come join their interstellar federation.
Fifthly, maybe it’s something we haven’t yet thought of or can’t think of, alien psychology being totally outside our realm of comprehension.
So, in conclusion, where is everybody? IMHO, ‘They’re heeeere.’
And, I think we’re property!
Further readings: Unidentified Flying Objects
Adler, Bill (Editor); Letters to the Air Force on UFOs; Dell Publishing Company, N.Y.; 1967:
Evans, Hilary & Spencer, John (Editors); UFOs: 1947-1987: The 40-Year Search for an Explanation; Fortean Tomes, London; 1987:
Evans, Hilary & Stacy, Dennis (Editors); A World History of UFOs; Red Sparrow, Potts Point, NSW; 1997:
Fuller, John G. (Editor); Aliens in the Skies: The New UFO Battle of the Scientists: The Scientific Rebuttal to the Condon Committee Report: Testimony by Six Leading Scientists Before the House Committee on Science and Astronautics July 29, 1968; G.P. Putnam’s Sons, N.Y.; 1969:
Harkins, R. Roger & Saunders, David R; UFOs? Yes! Where the Condon Committee Went Wrong; Signet Books, N.Y.; 1968: [Saunders was a member of the University of Colorado UFO Study.]
Hynek, J. Allen; The Hynek UFO Report; Dell Publishing Company, N.Y.; 1977: [Dr. Hynek was a scientific consultant to the USAF UFO investigations.]
Hynek, J. Allen; The UFO Experience: A Scientific Inquiry; Henry Regnery Company, Chicago; 1972: [Dr. Hynek was a scientific consultant to the USAF UFO investigations.]
Kean, Leslie; UFOs: Generals, Pilots, and Government Officials Go On the Record; Harmony Books, New York; 2010:
Maccabee, Bruce; UFO-FBI Connection; Llewellyn Publications, St. Paul, Minnesota; 2000:
National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena (NICAP); The UFO Evidence; NICAP, Washington, D.C.; 1964:
National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena (NICAP); United States Air Force Projects Grudge and Bluebook Reports 1-12 (1951-1953); NICAP, Washington, D.C.; 1968:
Page, Thornton & Sagan, Carl (Editors); UFO’s: A Scientific Debate; Cornell University Press, Ithaca, N.Y.; 1972:
Pope, Nick; Open Skies, Closed Minds: For the First Time A Government UFO Expert Speaks Out; Simon & Schuster, London; 1996: [Nick Pope was the former UK UFO investigations officer for the British Government.]
Pope, Nick; The Uninvited: An Expose of the Alien Abduction Phenomenon; Simon & Schuster, London; 1997: [Nick Pope was the former UK UFO investigations officer for the British Government.]
Randle, Kevin D.; Project Blue Book Exposed; Marlowe & Company, N.Y.; 1997:
Redfern, Nicholas; The FBI Files; Simon & Schuster, London; 1998:
Ruppelt, Edward J.; The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects; Ace Books, N.Y.; 1956:
[Ruppelt was a former head of the USAF Project Blue Book.]
Sachs, Margaret; The UFO Encyclopedia; Perigee Books, N.Y.; 1980:
Smith, Marcia S. & Havas, George D.; The UFO Enigma; Congressional Research Service; The Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.; 20 June 1983:
Spencer, John (Compiler/Editor); The UFO Encyclopedia; Headline Book Publishing, London; 1991:
Steiger, Brad (Editor); Project Blue Book: The Top UFO Findings Revealed!; Ballantine Books, N.Y.; 1976:
Story, Ronald D. (Editor); The Encyclopedia of UFOs; Dolphin Books, Garden City, N.Y.; 1980:
Tacker, Lt. Col. Lawrence J; Flying Saucers and the U.S. Air Force: The Official Air Force Story; D. Van Nostrand Company, Inc.; Princeton, N.J.; 1960:
University of Colorado & Gillmor, Daniel S. (Editor); Final Report of the Scientific Study of Unidentified Flying Objects Conducted by the University of Colorado Under Contract to the United States Air Force; Bantam Books, N.Y.; 1969: [The Condon Committee Report.]
*For example, USAF Major-General John A. Samford, at a Pentagon press conference in late July 1952 made the statement with respect to the then recent Washington D.C. UFO flap that these sightings were by “credible observers of relatively incredible things”. It’s on the public record.
Science librarian; retired.