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What unknown forces are really in control of our lives?  Do nightmares of  old gods and spirits of cobweb presence run rampant in our unconscious?  Have otherworldly desires completely taken over, or are we merely the victims of opportunity and profit?  Do secret societies with allegiance to stygian madness seek the ultimate control?  Or are we merely pawns in some vast universal battle for reality?   Lies are the truth, and truth lies -- but one shining source remains that all seek to learn...Conspiracy Journal...here once again to bring the light of truth to curse the darkness.

This week, Conspiracy Journal brings you such Venus-Rising stories as:

- We Are Not Alone, Claims NASA Astronaut Edgar Mitchell -
- All UFO Secrets Must Be Disclosed Part II
-
- Kelowna Woman Says She Saw Ogopogo Lake Monster -
- Costa Rica: Satanists or Chupacabras? -
AND: Hauntings Spook Wisconsin Library

All these exciting stories and MORE in this week's issue of
CONSPIRACY JOURNAL!

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COMING SOON!
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In This Incredible Issue:

FEATURES:

The Mysterious Subterranean Realms of California.

The Mysterious Blast at California’s Port Chicago.

California’s Lake Monsters.

PsiSpies: The History of Remote Viewing.
By Louis Proud

COLUMNS
strange customs   
Italian Community Secretly Builds Breathtaking Underground Temples

Commentary   
The Dangers of Hallucinogens

Urban Legends   
Amusement Parks:Fodder for Scary Stories

Haunted Heritage   
Ghostly Activities at California’s Cal-Neva Resort

Arcane Cults   
The John Frum Movement:A South Pacific CargoCult

From the Skies   
2008:The Year of the UFO?

Interview   
Mary Ann Winkowski:The Original Ghost Whisperer


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- BLOWING THE LID OFF THE COVER-UP DEPARTMENT -

We Are Not Alone, Claims NASA Astronaut Edgar Mitchell

Aliens have contacted humans several times but governments have hidden the truth for 60 years, the sixth man to walk on the moon has claimed.

Apollo 14 astronaut Dr Edgar Mitchell, said he was aware of many UFO visits to Earth during his career with NASA but each one was covered up.

Dr Mitchell, 77, said during a radio interview that sources at the space agency who had had contact with aliens described the beings as 'little people who look strange to us.'

He said supposedly real-life ET's were similar to the traditional image of a small frame, large eyes and head.

Chillingly, he claimed our technology is 'not nearly as sophisticated' as theirs and "had they been hostile", he warned 'we would be been gone by now'.

Dr Mitchell, along with with Apollo 14 commander Alan Shepard, holds the record for the longest ever moon walk, at nine hours and 17 minutes following their 1971 mission.

'I happen to have been privileged enough to be in on the fact that we've been visited on this planet and the UFO phenomena is real,' Dr Mitchell said.

'It's been well covered up by all our governments for the last 60 years or so, but slowly it's leaked out and some of us have been privileged to have been briefed on some of it.

'I've been in military and intelligence circles, who know that beneath the surface of what has been public knowledge, yes - we have been visited. Reading the papers recently, it's been happening quite a bit.'

Dr Mitchell, who has a Bachelor of Science degree in aeronautical engineering and a Doctor of Science degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics claimed Roswell was real and similar alien visits continue to be investigated.

He told the astonished Kerrang! radio host Nick Margerrison: "This is really starting to open up. I think we're headed for real disclosure and some serious organisations are moving in that direction.'

Mr Margerrison said: 'I thought I'd stumbled on some sort of astronaut humour but he was absolutely serious that aliens are definitely out there and there's no debating it.'

 Officials from NASA, however, were quick to play the comments down.

In a statement, a spokesman said: "NASA does not track UFOs. NASA is not involved in any sort of cover up about alien life on this planet or anywhere in the universe.

'Dr Mitchell is a great American, but we do not share his opinions on this issue.'

Source: The Daily Mail
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1037471/Apollo-14-astronaut-claims-aliens-
HAVE-contact--covered-60-years.html


- SECRETS OF BRAZILIAN UFOLOGY DEPARTMENT -

All UFO Secrets Must Be Disclosed
Part II


In an unprecedented exclusive interview to A. J. Gevaerd, editor of the Brazilian UFO Magazine, one the highest ranking and most distinguished officials of the Brazilian Air Force, Brigadier José Carlos Pereira, recognized that "it is time to end the UFO secrecy". The part one of the long interview has just been published in the edition # 141, April, of the Brazilian UFO Magazine. The second part has been published in the edition # 142, May. You can download the covers of both editions and the first part of the interview here: www.ufo.com.br/public/pereira/UFO-141.jpg. Photos of Brigadier Pereira can be also found in the same folder.

http://www.ufo.com.br/public/pereira/All_UFO_Secrets_Must_Be_Disclosed_1.doc

This interview was conducted with the participation of Fernando de Aragao Ramalho and Roberto Affonso Beck, special consultants to Brazilian UFO Magazine. The translation to English was conducted by Eduardo Rado, From the Brazilian UFO Magazine Team.

UFO – How does the Air Force treat UFO cases involving a civil crew such as in Case Vasp? (On February 8th 1982 a Boeing 727 was followed by a UFO for three hours)

Pereira – Civil crew members are normally in contact with controlling bodies linked to the Air Force. In the past, anything regarding civil aircraft was under the Department of Civil Aviation (DAC). Nowadays, this is subject to the Brazilian Agency for Civil Aviation (ANAC). Therefore the Air Force has nearly no contact with civil pilots unless through air traffic control matters.

UFO – How would it be if we had a UFO sighting involving a TAM pilot, for example?

Pereira – This would be taken to the Air Force. This is part of the assignments of the Air Defense Command. The fact is reported to an air traffic controller and the information gets into the system.

UFO – How would this information be treated?

Pereira – A civil aircraft is always controlled by a body, by a controlling center, and all of these in Brazil are of military nature. When a pilot says “there's something going on here”, the controlling center will immediately report to the military operations center in that area, in case it is a serious occurrence. They will take some action regarding that fact and report to the Air Defense Command (CODA), which is the superior body and the only one to comprehend the whole country. After the recent Brazilian aviation crisis I finally could convince people of the necessity of having some kind of civil CODA and it was eventually created in Rio de Janeiro. The CODA we have in Brasilia is of military nature. There must be another one, a civil one, with the same assignments so that we know why an aircraft is delayed, for example. There were occurrences of many serious problems and a new body was created, the Center for Air Navigation Management (CGNA), which is now adjusted to civil traffic issues, such as delayed flights, bad weather conditions, etc.

UFO – On January 19th 2002 you gave an interview at Circuito Night and Day, a TV show hosted by congressman Celso Russomanno. During the interview you showed a book of flight occurrences and said in that year alone more than 90 entries were registered there as UFO occurrences. However, you did not allow him to open the book at the show saying that was confidential. What is really contained there?

Pereira – Many things are there including official reports that could be filled in by anyone regarding the so-called “hotel traffic” (the way Brazilian military classify UFOs). Some of these reports may even come from mad people who allege to have seen something. But when something that cannot be explained is found in that book, it is transferred to another one called Book of Occurrences, LRO. All of these cases are kept there in those books. One day researchers will be allowed to see them. And there are also reports from pilots, air traffic controllers, etc. Everything we cannot explain, everything that is held as secret, goes to those books.

UFO – Why are these things kept secret? How can a researcher examine those books when they are secret? We would like to see them...

Pereira – That's why I think they should be disclosed. I have the same opinion, Gevaerd. I believe we have one new book every year. At the end of each year we get what is written there and transfer to a file. Nowadays we don't have a book [of cases] anymore because everything is already digital.

UFO – You must have seen many of these books. What was your greatest surprise among cases reported by civil and military pilots?

Pereira – The most impressive reports are those from pilots. These are the most consistent ones because pilots are driving an aircraft which is very different from driving a car. But sometimes a pilot recognizes his mistake and say “I really saw something on the left but that was only solar refraction”. But other times they were looking to the other side where there is no refraction, then we have something strange. Sightings reported by pilots are more consistent than those from lay people looking to the sky from the ground.

UFO – Even civil Ufology does not know how to deal with some particular reports...

Pereira – That's why I asked for a questionnaire to be included in that form [for the registration of hotel traffic cases] so that we can know a little about the person's profile, such as their knowledge on meteorology.

UFO – Have you worked in the preparation of that questionnaire?

Pereira – Yes. We had an old one and I updated it by including those additional questions. Because it's a different thing when we can analyze a case with more information about it. I don't underestimate an ordinary person, but we have a different approach to a report from an engineer, for example. That questionnaire is still valid and useful.

UFO – How many of these questionnaires do you think were filled?

Pereira – I don't know, because I had no more information on that after I left the Air Force. However, I believe they are 10 per month in the whole country [Brazil]. These data are held at the Brazilian Air Defense Command (Comdabra).

UFO – Are these the ones contained in the folders Brigadier Azambuja said to be there since 1954 (in our meeting on 20th May 2005)?

Pereira – Yes, these are the ones.

UFO – Which year registers the higher number of hotel traffic entries? Do you have any special comment on a particular year?

Pereira – I don't remember when we had more occurrences. But the most interesting year was 1986, when we had that case in Sao Jose dos Campos (SP), on May 19th. That night was really amazing.

UFO – Do you believe minister Dilma Rousseff would be informed in case we had a military or civil chase for UFOs in the country? Would the subject be taken to her?

Pereira – The minister of defense will know about it for sure, since this is part of his assignments. It's automatic, his phone will ring. But I don't know if he would inform minister Rousseff. Depending on the case, the minister has the obligation to inform the president. This is how it works. When I was a commander at Comdabra, I had the personal number of the president, but I was not allowed to call him for any simple thing.

UFO – What is the chain of contact in these cases?

Pereira – In case something serious happened I had to call the commander of air operations who then would call the Air Force commander. He would contact the minister of defense who, in turn, would report to the president of the Republic. But I had authority to skip any of these steps. If I couldn't contact my commander, for example, I could go on to the next post and from this to the next one until I reach the president. If the president couldn't answer, then I should take responsibility. This is all legal. Of course we need to assess the situation, I'd never go that far if not for the most serious problem. When I was a commander at Comdabra [1999 to 2001] all cases involving military and UFOs spotted by radars would came to my knowledge. After I left, I still had access to nearly all information I desired on this subject.

UFO – When you were a commander, how often did you receive reports on the cases?

Pereira – That was only once a month. A controller would say something like “I'm following this object for 10 minutes in the radar”, or “we have another hotel traffic in Amazonas or Santa Catarina”. However, false echoes or false targets are very common in radars. A false target appears very briefly and it is easy to know it because it disappears soon. But a different thing is when we have a regular trajectory. These occurred once a month and had very short duration.

UFO – Were there any confirmation from civil pilots reporting the case?

Pereira – Yes. Civil pilots always speak. The first thing they do when they see something strange is calling the controllers because they have a huge responsibility. Civil pilots are not afraid to speak because they don't want to lose their jobs for not reporting unusual facts.

UFO – But they don't seem to like to talk with the press. We had much difficulty to get their confidence.

Pereira – They don't talk to the press because their jobs are at stake, but there's another issue. Some airlines have problems with their aircraft and don't want the press to know it. This is a crime. I've seen planes landing in great difficulties without any assistance waiting for passengers because the problem was not reported. All because the company didn't want a bad image on TV. If the pilot had reported to the controllers, he could be fired. This is not right.

UFO – We have recently received a report from a Gol pilot who was flying from Fortaleza to Belem and saw a huge object crossing the way of his Boeing. He sent us the pictures and said he was very precisely assisted when he contacted Cindacta. Do these information he reported to the flight controller end at Comdabra too?

Pereira – Yes. A fact like this reported by a Gol pilot must have generated an official report which is certainly kept somewhere in Comdabra.

UFO – When something like this happens, who fills in the form reporting the hotel traffic?

Pereira – It could be the pilot or the traffic controller. The pilot can land and fill it in. He can get the form in any Air Force base or any traffic controlling office throughout the country. Pilots know where to get the form and where to deliver it completed which is in any Air Force base.

UFO – Then what happens to the completed form?

Pereira – There's always an investigation. In this case, for example, the pilot saw something and registered that. He must report the direction, altitude, and speed of the object. We need also details such as the position of the Sun compared to the aircraft's that time. The brightness of the object is also important, as well as the kind of clouds that time. All these information are precious. Then the controllers will check if some other aircraft has crossed the way which could explain the occurrence. A research will follow and if they discover that no other aircraft was there and the weather was clear, then we have a different situation. And all these things are easy to check because everything is in the report. We go on killing all possibilities until we understand that there is no explanation for the fact.

UFO – And what happens next?

Pereira – The report goes to the files. There's nothing to do with it. When we find an explanation the report is deleted. Someone from the Air Defense calls back the pilot saying they found out what happened. Then, when no explanation is found, other procedures are taken. It's important to note that those books of occurrences contain cases that couldn't be explained even after analyzed by experts especially assigned to this task.

UFO – So we finally know that what is filled in Comdabra was already analyzed and could not be explained. Do you have any idea of the number of entries in those books and folders every year?

Pereira – I haven't followed what happened there over the last three years, but we had one to three cases each month. I want to mention an important thing. I may be guessing, but I believe that 90% of sightings are never reported. Because they are filled only where there is an airport or an Air Force base by people who know whom to report to. So I don't know the percentage of sightings that ends in reports, but I think they must be less than a half percent.

UFO – If we have only half percent of cases reported, than the real number must surpass 200 every month! And we know that not all pilots take the form to fill it in and deliver.

Pereira – Yes. Pilots don't want to show up. And other civilians don't even know that these forms exist and are available throughout the country. So the number of reports is insignificant. Almost nothing comes to the military knowledge.

UFO – Are there any superior orders to cover up the information contained in those half percent of reports?

Pereira – No. There's no order for this kind of cover-up. What we do have is a level classification. Such things must be kept confidential, but there is no rule establishing this.

UFO – Have you ever heard of the Area 51 in the Nevada desert?

Pereira – Yes. The area is a real thing and we conducted some exercises there. Not in the Area 51 itself, but over the Nevada desert where many military facilities are located. The USAF performs exercises all over that place. It has international cooperation and invites military from many countries for training sessions there. We took part in a training program there and heard of the Area 51, but no one is allowed to enter there. The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) has already sent two teams to exercise there and I was leading one of these operations. One interesting thing is that all exercises avoid Area 51 which is located right at the center of everything.

UFO – Aren't there any incidents of pilots trespassing those borders?

Pereira – Yes. The biggest problem is to make foreign pilots understand the procedures to be followed. Not even US nationals are allowed to fly over that space.

UFO – Considering the circumstances involving traffic hotel occurrences and the interference some have caused in civil and military flights, do you believe there is any risk for our aircraft?

Pereira – We had no reports of collision so far. At least we haven't heard of any pilots reporting this kind of danger in specific forms [This one is different from the one used for hotel traffic].

UFO – Don't you think this might have happened without being registered?

Pereira – Yes. Because pilots and controllers must prepare a danger report on any situation of flight risk. Then they have to sign it and make themselves known before the situation is investigated. It doesn't mean it never occurred, it's just that I've never heard of that.

UFO – Do you think Brazilian government and the military consider “hotel traffic” as a menace to the national security?

Pereira – This is difficult to tell because in practice national security has different approaches. An “external menace” – I use quotation marks because I don't think any of us feel threatened by extraterrestrials – cannot be considered by a single country but for a group of them. From the moment one accepts that something is coming from space I think the United Nations will take a position and not countries alone. That won't be a measure from the US, Uruguay or Afghanistan alone. This is a very complex issue and I don't see any threat to security. But in case we are dealing with this maybe we'll have military information that cannot be disclosed such as the establishment and frequency of our radars, the speed of our jets against invaders, etc. These are military secret information that has nothing to do with the phenomenon itself. And during a UFO research, maybe some military data contained in the situation may prevent the whole thing to be disclosed. This is a standard procedure all over the world, when you block one thing in the operation, then everything is blocked.

UFO – Do you know the NPA-09, a document issued on August 20th 1990 entitled Procedures to be Followed by ATS/ATC Bodies in Case of UFO Sightings? Is it still in force?

Pereira – If no other document was prepared to replace it, then it is still in force. I'm not really sure, but if this is from 1990 then it's probably still in force. But this is a confidential document for the use of the Armed Forces. The NPA-09 determines that UFO occurrences must be entered in a book specific for this purpose (LRO). The occurrences must be entered in chronological order and including the time of the occurrence when possible. These are routine procedures.

UFO – This document NPA-09 contains an item (4.7) in the section entitled General Instructions, which reads: “In case the press or any other people request for information the answer shall be 'we are not authorized to comment on that'”. Why not answering to ufologists and the press? Wouldn't it be more transparent to answer to ufologists in a serious manner?

Pereira – I'm not for this, but controversial issues must be handled with care. In general, they are not authorized, but this is not only for military issues. Do you remember the subway accident in São Paulo last year (2007)? Everybody started to call and the response was “we are not authorized to comment on that”. This is to avoid disputes among different press agencies. Try talking to Folha de Sao Paulo and not to O Globo newspapers or vice-versa. You'll become an enemy to one of them. So the Armed Forces and the government normally try to keep distance from these press war.

UFO – What would be the best way to find access to the information NPA-09 intends to keep secret?

Pereira – The best way in this and other cases is to call for a press conference. Then any agency that wants information can send their journalists to make questions. Another way to handle a big request for information is to issue a press release. This is the standard recommendation.

UFO – Scientists accuse Ufology of lack of evidence. Let's suppose we can prove in little time that beings from other planets are visiting Earth. Would you expect any social impact at scientific, religious, economic or cultural levels?

Pereira – I have no doubt about that. In case that occurs many things would have to be reviewed.

UFO – Do you know if Brazil works or have worked together with other countries in UFO matters?

Pereira – Not anymore, but in the past we used to deal with the US. This is not like this anymore.

UFO – During Operação Prato some people said that it was terminated due to advise from the US who was receiving information on the operation's results. Is it true?

Pereira – It's very likely to be true. The US used to enter into every issue those days. They even wanted to advise us on that.

UFO – Have Americans ever recommended measures to be taken by Brazilians regarding UFOs spotted by radars or interceptions made by jets?

Pereira – No, never. But there's indeed a spontaneous exchange of information with other countries. There is an organization called System for Cooperation of American Air Forces (Sicofaa). They meet once a year in one of the member states to discuss everything from hygiene issues to fighting drug dealing. At Sicofaa – which has a proper communication system – issues are dealt with by commanders. A Brazilian Air Force commander, for example, can reach his US or any other counterpart directly. At Sicofaa there is total freedom to speak on any subject [Brazilian Air Force website informs that Sicofaa was created in 1961 in order to promote and strengthen mutual friendship and support among Air Forces of member states].

UFO – “Any subject” including flying saucers?

Pereira – Yes. I believe today even flying saucers can be discussed in that environment and not only among commanders. That body has many different commissions such as flight security, logistics, whatever. That's a fabulous initiative which is not affected by diplomatic issues. For example, the recent dispute among Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela had no effect on the system [Colombia allegedly attacked a Farc camp in Ecuador supposedly supported by Ecuador and Venezuela]. Presidents and politicians cursed one another in those countries, but military at Sicofaa were very professional and reasonable in dealing with this subject. That's the purpose of this body which I consider a kind of security against the war. Everybody thinks military want to go to war when the truth is the opposite. Military hate war because they should be the first to die. So, while presidents accuse one another, the military are actually working for peace through Sicofaa.

UFO – On that night of May 19th 1986, the so-called “Official UFOs Night in Brazil”, did the military consider those facts as extremely serious?

Pereira – Sure. There was an array of UFOs spotted and the whole defense system was put on alert. Colonel Ozires Silva was flying a Xingu near Poços de Caldas (MG) heading to Sao Jose dos Campos (SP) when radars showed 21 UFOs on many different locations from Sao Paulo to Rio de Janeiro including parts of Goias and Minas Gerais.

UFO – At the occasion, we had the minister of aeronautics, Brigadier Octavio Moreira Lima, on TV talking about that. He also authorized pilots and controllers to talk about the issue without any reserve.

Pereira – Yes. They gave a press conference. But the minister made a mistake by promising an official report to be released within the next 30 days. This was never done.

UFO – Never released, but the report was really prepared. The decision to release it, however, was changed. But some information contained in it leaked such as the number [21] of UFOs of 100m diameter each.

Pereira – That's true. The report would be made because the jets took off. Every time planes take off in an unusual situation the Air Force has to prepare a report and this is what happened. I've never heard of it, but it was certainly produced and for some reason the minister changed his mind about disclosing it.

UFO – We heard of it through a pilot of the Presidency of the Republic who saw it and told us some details. Were there any rumors about the report among the military?

Pereira – Let's get back to that initial point. Did that happen? Yes. Did pilots see it? Yes. Did radars spot it? Yes. Did Ozires see it? Yes. Did pilots in commercial planes see it? Yes. Does time of sightings match? Yes. Does trajectory of objects match? Yes. All this was technically analyzed. So, did that happen? Yes, it did happen. One of the most important things is that everything was spotted by the aircraft radars. And the main confirmation is when we have radars spotting objects simultaneously in the air and on the ground. Radars of aircraft operate in microwave band which is very narrow, while radars on the ground operate in a much broader band So there's no risk of confusion or mistake. Then we come to the question “What were those objects?”. No one knows. If those were not foreign jets attacking...

UFO – So they were unidentified flying objects, flying saucers?

Pereira – Yes. Unidentified flying objects.

UFO – Some ufologists call that an invasion due to the significant number and size of the objects. What did it represent to the military? Didn't it raise any fear or alert?

Pereira – No, no. Maybe the military think in a different way. What did they say that time? They admitted the fact, but what was the air defense response? Jets took off and reached the objects in less than two minutes. Were they armed with missiles? Yes they were.

UFO – Were they armed for any special reason or is it the standard procedure?

Pereira – That's normal. They are always armed, but with peace-time armament, that is, two missiles, small thing. Pilots had the proper training and radars entered maximum capacity which normally doesn't happen. Radars never operate at full capacity in order to save energy and to spare the device itself. We normally keep them working at 70% or 80% of their capacity. But after the jets took off the capacity was increased to a broader range. All the military regulations were observed. We did our job because this is the way military think. No communication has failed, the jets landed safe and pilots came back unharmed. Mission accomplished! When a general loses a war he asks to himself: “Where did I go wrong?”. He never says the enemy was more intelligent, but that he was stronger, that's all. I remember that time that our concern was to know if we did our part. Otherwise we'd be asking “Where did we go wrong?”

UFO – So why wasn't that report released?

Pereira – Probably because of some political reason or fear of panic. That time the idea was that the population would panic if they knew.

UFO – And wasn't there any further interest among the military and the government on that invasion?

Pereira – No. I can assure you that we've never had this feeling. We only had the feeling that we had done our part. We also felt we haven't failed in our response. If those objects were from an enemy country, they'd have been crushed that night. It's very important to hold the enemy's first attempt so that we have time to prepare for a second charge, but that was not the case. The country wasn't suffering any threat at all.

UFO – Over the three last decades many countries have admitted that UFOs are real and represent intelligent life visiting our planet. First was France in 1976, who has just published 100 thousand documents on the Internet. Then it was Uruguay in 1979 and Chile in 1997. Recently Peru and Ecuador did the same. What do you think of this?

Pereira – I think this is a pragmatic measure towards real facts. None of the countries you've mentioned is irresponsible. They are all serious nations and have different levels of development. And when serious countries admit something, they must be taken into consideration. As sovereign nations they were never forced to do that and the international community must recognize this.

UFO – Belgium, Spain, China, Russia - still in communist times - and Mexico in 2005 may do the same. Most of them took that position after a significant sighting within their boundaries. In Chile occurrences were in Deserto do Atacama, Punta Arenas, and Santiago. Peru had a UFO wave some years ago which affected also Lima. Uruguay had several cases even in Montevideo. Don't you think the Brazilian UFO Official Night in 1986 should have triggered a similar attitude?

Pereira – This takes us back to initial questions. When we can't explain something, it goes to the files. It seems in those countries they didn't have the explanation but their decision was different, they decided to admit the existence of something even though they couldn't explain that. That's what they did. Instead of archiving the facts they admitted their existence. The question now is what were those things...

UFO – Brazilian closest neighbor to admit UFOs existence is Uruguay (since 1979). They have established a Committee for UFO Report and Investigation (Cridovni) within their Air Force. Has Brazil ever exchanged information on UFOs with that country?

Pereira – Not that I know. The only exchange was with the US during the Cold War era because the US used to force themselves into every issue.

UFO – But if that exchange occurred only during the Cold War how could US military and even physicians be present in Case Varginha occurred in 1996? We know they were there taking part in many maneuvers resulting in the shipment of UFO's wreckage and its crew bodies to the US. This was 16 years after the end of the Cold War.

Pereira – Look, when I talk about Cold War, I mean official contact from government to government in a higher level. But in specific issues things are different. US nationals work in other countries when there is something they want to know. And all countries do the same. This can be done in a diplomatic scope.

UFO – We had a strange coincidence few weeks after Case Varginha: NASA director Daniel Goldin came to Brazil. Brazilian and US space agencies signed an agreement for space cooperation. Ufologists say this was only an excuse to cover-up US participation in that story...

Pereira – This is what we call “Operation Umbrella”, because after that we are covered against any bad weather.

UFO – You are right, but we were lucky that Brazilian ufologists could collect valuable information on the case before the military could launch their cover-up operations. Fortunately, Ubirajara Franco Rodrigues, one of the most serious Brazilian researcher, lived very near the place where ETs were seen and captured. He was quick enough to start researching immediately and called other ufologists who could visit the city in the following days. Did you follow this case?

Pereira – This is the story I know the least. All that I know I got from the ordinary press which is not very reliable because it is somewhat censored. Revista UFO has no censorship, but newspapers like O Globo, A Folha de São Paulo, and O Estado de Minas have. Many things [about Varginha] are still ignored also because the press had no access to the information. There's one more thing: the editor of a newspaper first analyzes which news will sell or not, then they decide on what to publish.

UFO – That's true. Nothing was published about Varginha by the US ordinary press that time.

Pereira – As I told you, the US force themselves into everything. It seems they want a world and ideological war. There's always a US ambassador giving opinions on the country where he is serving. They expressed opinions on that recent immigration issue between Brazil and Spain. What do they have to do with that? Nothing. And still they want to take part. But they are right and we are wrong. We should also force ourselves into everything.

UFO – Brigadier, do you think Brazil could take the same attitude as those countries which admit the existence of UFOs and the need to investigate them? Do you think we have a favorable environment to disclose secret documents?

Pereira – In my opinion we have the most favorable environment here to open our files! I even think the population is eager for transparency including on ufological issues. Brazil lives a very unusual moment with all these federal police operations. Everything is being put very clear. Now we have all ministers' personal expenses made public. You can find through the Internet whatever they spent with their official cards.

UFO – Despite that, ufological files are kept inaccessible to Brazilian citizens...

Pereira – Yes. And could we trust a country like this?! There is much more secret in ministers' personal affairs than in UFO issues and the first were all openly published. That minister's private expenses shocked the whole country while Ufology can't cause any damage but raise a serious scientific interest. I mean, there must be transparency. There is no reason to keep on hiding things. But it goes a long way to officially accepting UFOs existence like France did. And the first step towards that is transparency. People will never believe files while they are still kept secret.

UFO – So you think that if they were disclosed...

Pereira – This would be the first step for us to advance. I don't believe people would panic if these files are opened. This (panic) would never happen. If there's a country that never panics this is Brazil. Maybe we'll even have a samba theme in celebration [laughter].

UFO – If you were asked by the government or the military would you go for the disclosure of files?

Pereira – Absolutely! I'll be for the opening of all files safeguarding those four restrictions I've already mentioned. First we have to protect the privacy of people mentioned in the documents. Second, we can not disclose things that could generate panic or cause damage to the population. Third, it's crucial to safeguard secrets that could trigger diplomatic, military, strategic or economic problems. And fourth, we need to protect the country's military, economic, and strategic secrets which could put the country in a vulnerable position against competitors or depreciate our currency. If we have none of these obstacles, then we should disclose everything. I believe ufological issues don't fit into any of these restrictions. That means we have no reason to keep it secret.

UFO – Don't you think that in case Brazilian military want to disclose the subject some international powers – especially the US – might go against it?

Pereira – No, absolutely not. I don't think so.

UFO – Or maybe this is not a priority to the Brazilian government so they prefer not to do anything about it?

Pereira – Maybe due to a cultural reason. “Why should we go over this?”, the government may think. There is also Brazilian traditional bureaucratic problems. Bureaucrats don't want to change anything. “Is it worth the change?”, they may ask. No, so let's forget it. This impairs the development of the nation because forgetting ufological files means forgetting many other things that could be made public.

UFO – You are aware of the campaign for freedom of information which resulted in the first official meeting involving the Air Force and researchers of the Brazilian Ufologists Committee (CBU). We were received at Cindacta and Comdabra by many officials including Major Antonio Lorenzo, spokesman of that body, and Brigadiers Telles Ribeiro and Atheneu Azambuja. They all assured us that the Air Force commanders had given orders for them to show everything. However, only a few doors were opened and only three files were just partially shown. It seems the Air Force meant only to appease us. Did we have the right impression?

Pereira – First let me tell you that Lorenzo is a great public relations officer. Now, I don't know if that is the right impression. But I assure you that my position is for the full opening of all files without any pre-analysis because there's nothing else to analyze anymore. But how to interpret the documents and how to direct the independent investigation is another thing. Anyway, I think that after the opening, UFO issues won't belong only to ufologists anymore. It must be engaged by the whole nation, not only ufologists. Who are the most interested parties? Astrophysicists, astronomers, geologists, aviators, meteorologists, etc.

UFO – How do you imagine this opening? I believe the military won't simply call ufologists and deliver us all the materials...

Pereira – I think they would make everything available at the National Archive. This is the best way of doing that [Created in 1838, this is a central body of the System for Management of Documents of the Brazilian Archive, an integral part of the Civil Affairs Ministry].

UFO – During our visit to Comdabra we delivered three letters to Brigadier Telles Ribeiro. One was addressed to Aeronautics commander, another to the minister of defense and the last one to president Da Silva. We were requesting the opening of UFO files and the establishment of a mixed committee of ufologists and military maybe including scientists in order to research UFOs. If the committee is really established, would you accept an invitation to take part?

Pereira – If it were a non-governmental committee I would take part as a citizen, a collaborator. I do stress it must be a non-governmental one otherwise it would be a waste. Unfortunately that time when you visited Comdabra was not appropriate to a request for the establishment of a committee. That historical moment didn't allow for that. Now we live a different moment. I wouldn't say it's an extraordinary one, but it's really much better than before. Nowadays “transparency” and “disclosure” are fashionable words because of recent scandals in politics, in those times they were not.

UFO – Do you know any other high rank official who has the same opinion as yours and could support our campaign?

Pereira – Well, everyone is afraid of talking. Military in service may think about it, but they will never speak. Those retired do speak, however. I will talk to some colleagues to see how they feel about all this [He mentioned two officials of the Air Defense System - one in service, another retired -, but their names are safeguarded until they are contacted. One of them allegedly had a very significant experience with UFOs].

UFO – At the first time we met at Comdabra, on May 20th 2005, we gave you some magazines and you said you were already a reader. Are you still our reader?

Pereira – Yes. I buy the magazines from newsstands at the airport or bus station in Brasilia. It's been some time since I don't get a new one, but I always read it. Sometimes it's not easy to find it at the newsstands. It seems more people appreciate it.

UFO – We have two invitations to you. First we would like to invite you for a conference at the 36° Brazilian Congress of Scientific Ufology to be held from 22nd to 25th May in Curitiba.

Pereira – Of course. I thank you for the invitation. I'll do my best to be there.

UFO – Second, would you accept an invitation to take part in an international body of civil and military personalities from different countries that occasionally meet in Washington in order to request governments to open their files?

Pereira – Well, I'm not sure about that now. But I can assure you I'll be in Curitiba.

UFO – Lastly, will you keep on reading Revista UFO?

Pereira – Of course. Revista UFO is the reference on Ufology here in Brazil.

Brigadier Jose Carlos Pereira can be reached by e-mail. You can send your inquiries to Revista UFO and we will forward them to him: revista@ufo.com.br.

- FLYING THE NOT-SO-FRIENDLY-SKIES DEPARTMENT -

Target Acquired: The Armed Response to UFOs

On Wednesday, November 27, 2002, a flight of Lockheed F?16 interceptors was launched to investigate what was described by a NORAD spokesman as "a trail of condensation" moving from the Caribbean Sea toward the United Stated. This contrail apparently alerted the Air Space Command, located in Colorado Springs, that a rogue aircraft or missile may have been fired toward a target in the continental U.S. The fighters reached the indicated coordinates, but were unable to find the source of the contrail.

Only a few months earlier, in July 2002, reports of an unexplained object zooming low over suburban Washington D.C. caused yet another "scramble" ? one of hundreds since the destruction of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. The military, fearing any possible aerial attack, was taking no chances against the possibility of another similar incident?this time in the nation's capital. The media did not mention that 50 years previous, almost to the day, fighters had unsuccessfully tried to reach the UFOs that sailed leisurely past the dome of the U.S. Capitol.

The experience appears to have repeated itself six months later: according to the late Ohio-based researcher Kenny Young, a D.C. area witness reported hearing two fighter jets chasing an object over that city at 10:50 a.m. on December 16, 2002. Describing the object as "bright silver and reflecting the sun" and much larger than an airplane, the witness added that it was as swift as any interceptor. The fact that she did not report seeing interceptors in pursuit led her to believe that the F-15's "had just missed it." (http://www.rense.com/general33/restrict.htm).

It is almost inevitable: in a world as thoroughly militarized as our own, with openly declared wars and high- and low-intensity conflicts raging over five continents, jet fighters--the pride and first line of defense of a country's sovereign airspace--are also the first official committee to deal with the unknown. Since the development of high-speed interceptors in WWII, aircraft of many nations have had brushes with the still-unexplained aerial phenomena known as UFOs. In some cases, the prudent response has been to shadow the intruders and photograph their movements with the interceptor's gun camera (the source of many intriguing stills and movies dealing with the phenomenon. In others, authorization to open fire has been granted, prompting a wide range of responses from the intruder. Sometimes the unknown object simply zooms out of reach, sometimes it disappears. Upon occasion, the "uncorrelated target" shoots back with devastating results.

The history of encounters between the U.S. military and unidentified objects forms a major component of ufological study, yet the brave men and women of the USAF are hardly alone in their efforts, as their counterparts in other countries have also been called upon to square off against the unknown: UFO researcher Kevin Randle mentions a 1972 article written by Jean Thoraval, a correspondent for two major U.S. newspapers, regarding the luminous orange sphere seen over Hanoi during the Vietnam War. Citing the correspondent's article, Randle states that North Vietnamese SAMs (surface-to-air missiles) were launched against the intruder. Thoraval claims having seen how the projectiles "flamed out" short of their mysterious target, a sign that the orange sphere was at a very high altitude but large enough to be clearly seen from the surface. In 1960, the French Air Force scrambled Mystere fighters in 1960 to intercept two disk-shaped objects that appeared over Paris. The pursuit lasted less than a half hour, and the unknown craft darted out away from the jets, vanishing into the horizon.

Mexico Reacts to the UFO Issue

In October 1995, in the initial rush of excitement over the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a U.S. military delegation visited Mexico City for a low-key but highly important opportunity: changing the Mexican military's perception of the U.S. from that of an aggressor to more of a partner. William Perry, Secretary of Defense under the Clinton Administration, and General Barry McCaffrey, met with their Mexican counterparts and proposed "bringing together the mechanisms for a joint struggle...and a better exchange of both equipment and armaments."

Secretary Perry took advantage of a ceremony at a Mexican military base to state that one of the crucial components of this new joint struggle--ostensibly in the war against drugs--included improved air defenses, something that had never been stressed before. Like most Latin American air forces, Mexico had relied heavily on T-33 fighters (used for training purposes by the USAF) and some newer purchases from Europe. Might it be too bold to suppose that the Pentagon's request that our southern neighbor "beef up" its air defenses have something to do with the UFO activity experienced earlier in the decade?

Given its long history of animosity toward the U.S. military (a result of the wars of 1845-47 and the early 20th century incursions into Northern Mexico by Gen. Sam Pershing, not to mention the siege of Veracruz), the Mexican military establishment had never been worked intimately with the Pentagon.

Mexico's history of encounters between unidentified flying objects and aircraft begins only a few years after Kenneth Arnold's historic 1947 sighting over Mount Rainier: on March 3, 1950, a Mexican aviation official engaged in a routine tour of inspection of the airports in the northern regions of the country when he saw a curious yellowish disk suspended at an estimated altitude of 15,000 feet over the city of Chihuahua's airport. A press report indicated that two airplanes--whether military or civilian--tried to intercept the object but were unable to reach it.
By mid-March, the saucers were over Mexico City itself. On the 14th, many hundreds of witnesses reported seeing four flying saucers over Mexico's international airport, creating a sensation across the city. Activity reached its peak on March 21, when the El Nacional newspaper reported that an unidentified object was seen so clearly over Mexico City that movie camera operators were allegedly able to capture it on film. Sensational claims continued to emerge, such as the supposed collision of a saucer in the Sierra de Moronesa mountains of Zacatecas--an impact that caused the earth to shake.

In 1957, the Mexican newspaper El Universal Gráfico published a comprehensive account on the alleged landing of a disk-shaped object in the community farms of San Juan de Aragón, an event witnessed by farmer Gilberto Espinoza. Although the incident had taken place in November of the preceding year, the newspaper ran its story in January 1958. An early UFO pursuit occurred on December 12, 1957, when a Douglas DC-3 belonging to Aerolíneas Mexicanas was intercepted by a "speeding saucer" over San Luis Potosí. Passengers aboard the aircraft were apparently petrified with fright as the pilot, Capt. Gilberto Alba, cooly put the DC-3 through a series of evasive maneuvers.

In August 1997, while ufologists worldwide were distracted by the hoaxed UFO over the Mexican neighborhood of Polanco, Mexico's prestigious El Financiero concerned itself with another matter: the possibility that unidentified flying objects had collided somewhere in the Chiapas 7th Military Region, the region which had attained global prominence due to the struggles of the Tzetzil natives and the Zapatista movement. UFOs had been reported over small populations in the vast rural state, but workers at Red Cross infirmary in the village of Cintalapa had managed to see a large round object giving off tongues of fire which disappeared behind the Sierra Madre. Some believed that the object fell into the el Sumidero Canyon while others said it had fallen into the Pacific Ocean. The Mexican armed forces initiated a thorough search of the region.

Mexican author and ufologist Carlos Alberto Guzmán Rojas has collected a wealth of encounters between aviators and UFOs in his book Los OVNIS y la Aviación Mexicana (Mexico:TM, 2001). While focusing mainly on civilian airliner encounters, Guzmán also includes some notable military encounters, some of them dating back to the early 1960s, when a Douglas C-54 belonging to the FAM (acronym for Fuerza Aérea Mexicana, the Mexican air force) had a mid-air UFO encounter during a cross-border flight to Texas on a mission to secure matériel: a silver saucer flew alongside the cargo plane over the Gulf of Mexico, less than two thousand feet off the starboard wing. The intruder finally peeled off when the C-54 was about to land at a U.S. base. The crew was so unnerved by the experience, and so fearful of reprisals if the matter was broached either at the U.S. base or back in Mexico, that it was years before anyone discussed the encounter openly.

In November 1978, a spectacular UFO incident occurred over Mexico City: thousands looked on as subsonic T-33's launched from the Santa Lucía AFB, home of the 202nd Fighter Wing, the one nearest to the Aztec capital, tried to catch up with a disk-shaped, multi-hued and windowed craft at around 7:45 p.m.. Nine Lockheed T-33 did their level best to intercept the intruder, which seemed to remain at a safe distance from the fighters' twenty-millimeter guns. Two years later, a squadron of Rockwell Turbocommanders participating in the Independence Day celebrations on September 16, 1980 were stalked by a black discoidal UFO which remained hidden in the cloud banks over Mexico City. According to Carlos Guzmán, photos of the concealed intruder were taken by Alejandro Guízar and his friends from the rooftop of their house as they observed the aerial maneuvers.

Although no clear-cut connection can be made, the protracted Mexican UFO wave of the mid-1970s may have caused the government to see the need to upgrade its hardware. In 1982, the FAM ordered the creation of the Escuadrón Aéreo 401 (401st Fighter Wing), charging it with safeguarding the integrity of the nation's airspace. Delivery of the first of several Northrop F-5 E/F jet fighters took place on the very same year as Mexico went on a buying spree: Antonov heavy cargo planes, Israeli-built Arava aircraft and Swiss Pilatus C-7 trainers. While these military expenditures could be seen as a result of the country's oil boom in the late '70s and early '80s, it is still interesting that a country with no clear-cut adversaries should behave thus. None of Mexico's neighbors to the south (Guatemala and Belize) have long-range air power; to the north it faces the air supremacy of the United States and to the east, Cuba's Soviet-era MIGs. But if the hypothesis presented in this article has any truth to it, the Mexican government has not succeeded in inspiring confidence among people who work in aviation.

Carlos Guzmán and Alfonzo Salazar interviewed Enrique Kolbeck, a senior air traffic controller at Mexico City's Benito Juarez airport. When asked his opinion on the FAM's record of UFO interception, Kolbeck was skeptical. "Without being pejorative, our air force is not developed, it isn't the type of air force able to make interceptions, as do other air forces. The priorities of the persons in charge do not extend to UFOs, I think. Perhaps there is an arrangement between governments so that every time a strange object falls in our Mexico, another country can take it away to engage in research on it."

Events such as the one which occurred on March 23, 1999 clearly indicate why any country would want to avail itself of some means of "credible response" to unknown forces. Between 6:15 and 6:30 that evening, an elongated flying object measuring an astounding 2 kilometers in length and shaped like an office building was reported to the Benito Juarez airport tower. Enshrouded in clouds, the flying behemoth remained over the Texcoco Dry Lake and was clearly seen by nearly two dozen airport mechanics who were waiting to service a flight arriving from Acapulco.

This story, which appeared in Mexico's La Prensa newspaper, was never officially confirmed. However, air traffic controller Enrique Kolbeck made reference to a similar case which occurred some years earlier to the north of Mexico City and involving an object so large to be classified as "hair-raising" by the controller. The object matched the description of a UFO "mothership" and appeared to be surrounded by a swarm of lesser craft.

A Showdown in Spain

In October 1976, Spanish journalist Juan José Benítez's research into the subject of UFOs took a sudden and utterly unexpected turn when a general of the Ejército del Aire (the Spanish Air Force) handed him a dossier of a dozen UFO cases marked "top secret". This unexpected windfall gave Benítez a leg-up over other UFO investigators, particularly when the general -- who had demanded anonymity -- seemed to hint that his superiors in the government had given tacit approval to this handing over of information to a prominent journalist.

The twelve cases included in the dossier, which were published two years later in book form under the title OVNIS: Documentos Oficiales del Gobierno Español (UFOs: Official Documents of the Spanish Government) would have softened the most hardened skeptic and pleased the most scientifically-minded UFO researcher. Each case was thoroughly substantiated with affidavits, photographs, and 8mm movie film from witnesses. Some of them were gun-camera films taken by Spanish fighter pilots who had flown missions to intercept unidentified flying objects venturing into their country's airspace.

Benítez's one-on-one interview with General Carlos Castro Cavero constituted the lengthiest interview granted by a high-ranking officer of Spain's air force on the subject of UFO's, and never before had a general been so outspoken: "Of course they exist." Castro declared at one point "What is more, I believe that they are extraterrestrial spacecraft." He went on to explain that in his opinion, any vehicle that could not be identified as an airplane, a weather balloon, or a natural phenomenon, yet was clearly a solid object, must be, perforce, a vehicle originating from a place outside our planet's atmosphere.

Yet in his wildest dreams, the journalist could not have expected the general to admit -- for the record, anyway -- to having actually seen a UFO. Yet General Castro smiled and stated: "Yes, I have seen one [...] At a farm I own in the province of Zaragoza, at Sádaba. I witnessed a shining object there. It hung motionless in the sky and at an altitude which was hard to determine, since I was unable to determine its size...I summoned my relatives and all the farmhands, and they all saw it. I recall that all of Sádaba saw it...it lasted for over an hour."

The general answered many other questions, some of a more practical nature, such as the mechanisms that went into effect when the Spanish Air Force was alerted to a UFO sighting: first, an arbiter was appointed, more often than not a chief aviator familiar with all the different phenomena to be found in the skies at different altitudes. The arbiter contacts the witnesses, asking them direct questions in order to assess their degree of education as well as other details pertaining to the sighting, such as place, time, flight path followed by the object or objects, luminosity, and other particulars. A meteorological report for the location where the sighting occurred is added to the official record. The arbiter then interviews air traffic control operators to see if any airplanes or weather balloons were over the area.

Perhaps General Castro's willingness to express his views on UFOs constituted the preamble to the twelve cases delivered to Benítez months later.

The most outstanding among these cases included a sighting made by the officers and crew of the destroyer Atrevida, belonging to the Spanish Navy, which was stationed off the island of Fuerteventura (one of the Canary Islands, and by far the most mysterious) in June 1976. At 9:27 p.m. on the evening of June 22, a yellowish light was seen to move off Fuerteventura's shores in a direct line toward the warship. The enigmatic sphere of light halted its progress half-way toward the vessel, and gyrating beam of light issuing from the sphere became visible for a number of minutes. Spellbound by the unknown phenomenon, those on the ship noticed a halo of bluish-yellow light envelop the object, which later split into two distinct components, one of which made a spiral ascent into the night sky before disappearing. The bluish-yellow halo of light remained in place for over half an hour after the object itself had disappeared.

Rivers of ink have flown over another one of these cases, the landing of a UFO in the gunnery range of the Zaragoza Air Force Base in Bardenas Reales. A number of expurgated versions of the account had made the rounds, omitting any mention of UFOs. However, the declassified files more than compensated for the omission.

At eleven o' clock on the evening of January 2, 1975, a corporal and four soldiers on watch in one of the gunnery range's buildings suddenly became aware of a red light on the ground about a mile away from their position. At first, they believed that the light issued from a tractor, but realized upon closer inspection that such a vehicle was in the middle of the gunnery range at an ungodly hour. The guards kept a careful eye on the unexplained light source from their perch on the highest level of the installation's watchtower. Their monotonous routine was about to go down in history.

After half an hour, the red light rose gently into the sky to a height of about a hundred feet. It flew toward an auxiliary watchtower directly across from the one occupied by the alarmed soldiers. After flying a loop around the auxiliary tower, it headed straight for them, flying over their position and changing in color from red to orange before flying off into the night sky. It was then that the alarmed soldiers (most of them just conscripts fulfilling Spain's two-year compulsory military service requirement) realized that another object -- a glowing, unearthly white rather than red -- occupied the same location where the red object had been.

This was too much for the corporal, who phoned the gunnery range barracks, containing about 30 soldiers and commanded by a sergeant, who was told that the guards in the main watchtower were reporting a UFO within the base perimeter. The sergeant stepped out of the barracks carrying binoculars and followed by the other soldiers. Through his binoculars, he saw that the light was, in his own words, "as round as a beret". It gave off bright flashes against the ground before rising into the air, following the same trajectory as the red object, and vanishing.

An encore performance took place a few nights later, on January 5th: this time four white lights were seen side by side at the same spot where the original incident had transpired. A vehicle with armed soldiers was quickly dispatched across the gunnery range to challenge the four intruders, which flew off as the vehicle approached them. Nonetheless, enough "ground effects" were found to substantiate the fact that something had indeed been there. The soldiers found burning vegetation and an entirely scorched circle some thirty feet in diameter. Nonetheless, a wedge-shaped section of terrain was left completely unscathed. Official investigators inspected the damaged on the next day, determining that the burning had been caused by poachers operating in the area.

The debate over another case remains strong to this day: the "Manises Incident", an encounter between an airliner and a UFO on November 11, 1979.

A Super Caravelle bearing tourists from Barcelona to the Canary Islands was engaged at an altitude of 23,000 feet by a huge object with two powerful red lights on its front and rear. To the crew's alarm, the "thing" came within some 70 feet of the Super Caravelle's left wing. Unable to shake the unwelcome escort, the airliner radioed the Manises Control Tower in Valencia, advising the traffic controllers that it was coming in for an emergency landing. The news hit the wire services within minutes of the plane's arrival: an airliner with 109 passengers had been forced out of the sky by a UFO.

A Mirage F-1 fighter was scrambled from the Los Llanos Air Facility in Albacete to intercept not one, but three UFOs hovering over the area. At speeds of five hundred knots an hour, the F-1 pursued one of the contacts--a mysterious red light--toward the African shore before being recalled to pursue another unidentified object flying over Valencia and headed toward the city of Teruel. Unsure of what to do, the pilot radioed to his base: "Well, so what should I do? Throw him out of Spain?"

But before approval the option to removing the unwelcome visitor from his nation's airspace was given, the pilot was ordered to pursue a third contact over the Mediterranean--a luminous white disk. But the realities of a low fuel situation prompted the F-1 to return to Albacete, with the enigmatic object flying behind it until it landed at Los Llanos.

South America Faces the Unknown

Although it may come a surprise to some, in the few years following World War II, Argentina stood on the verge of becoming a world superpower.
According to Spanish aerospace expert Francisco Mañez, a number former Luftwaffe pilots--renowned air aces such as Adolf Galland and Hans Ulrich Rudel--joined the exodus of military talent from post-war Germany to Argentina. Flying wing designer Reimar Horten took his genius along with him, and so did Kurt Tank, director of Focke-Wulf Aviation. They soon found a dictator willing to employ their services: the charismatic and ambitious Juan Perón.

Perón's dream was to harness the newly disclosed secrets of the atom to air power. To achieve this, he hired exiled physicist Ronald Richter and set him up in a nuclear laboratory on the island of Huemul, located in the middle of Nahuel Huapi, the lake known to cryptozoologists for its mysterious marine monster. Richter's efforts were aimed at achieving what is now termed "cold fusion", and in 1951, Perón announced a breakthrough to the world. Under U.S. pressure, Richter was detained and his work stopped, but there were other things at work in the mysterious island of Huemul, such as an atomic engine to power the Argentinean submarine fleet and advanced aircraft such as the IA-38 flying wing, the IA-48 interceptor and the IA-36 transport -- streamlined futuristic aircraft decades ahead of their time. "The winds of silence," writes Máñez in his book Historias Aeronáuticas (Spain: Tetragrammaton, 2000) "still blow over Huemul. One can play the tourist and visit the facilities which sheltered the Axis scientists and their mysterious work, but we cannot even cast a glance at the classified papers of Richter or his collaborators--Beck, Haffke, Ehrenberg, Seelman-Eggebert, Greinel, Abele and Pinardi..."

Argentina's "brief, shining moment" as budding superpower ended with the fall of the Perón regime. The new government scrapped all of the Buck Rogerish prototypes and dutifully purchased U.S. made Sabres and DC-3s. Máñez argues that the UFO reports stemming from that part of the Andean range (the cities of Mendoza and Córdoba) are due to the fact that secret testing of these advanced aircraft is still taking place, now under the watchful eyes of the Pentagon. In 1974, a UFO reported by ground crews and controllers at the Bariloche Airport, and photographed by a witness, bears a strong resemblance to the controversial AVZ-9 Avrocar--a project terminated in 1961--but alive and well and being flown south of the U.S. border.

Whether man-made circular craft are being tested in South America is a subject for another article; the fact remains that the Argentinean military establishment, perhaps much less sophisticated than it might have been unless Juan Perón's dreams come true, has had close encounters of its own with unexplained intruders.

Journalist Alejandro Agostinelli, one of his country's most respected and controversial investigators of the UFO scene, notes that it was in 1952 that the Argentinean Navy, not its Air Force, created its first UFO inquiry agency at the Puerto Belgrano Naval Facility. Three years later, Capt. Jorge Milberg, would translate Maj. Donald Keyhoe's Flying Saucers from Outer Space. On July 3, 1960, Capt. Hugo Niotti, seconded to the Underofficer's Training Academy in Cordoba, photographed a conical object flying parallel to the ground that traveled at an estimated 200 kilometers per hour near the vicinity of Yacanto.

At 7:20 p.m. on May 22, 1962 a squadron of fighters in the vicinity of Bahía Blanca's Comandante Espora Naval Base, reported the presence of UFOs along its flight path. The interception lasted 35 minutes. Direct eyewitnesses to this incident were Lt. Rodolfo César Galdós and his student, Roberto Wilkinson. This was the first official acknowledgement of the phenomenon and would lead to the Argentinean Navy's inception of its first Permanent Commission for the Study of the UFO Phenomenon (COPEFO, in Spanish), headed by a team composed of naval officers and journalists. Not to be outdone, the Air Force promptly created its own saucer study group.

In August 1965, the Navy's COPEFO decided to track UFOs using a combination of radar and chase planes from the Punta Indio Aeronaval Base: during one incident, a strange echo was picked up on the radar screen. A Navy interceptor was scrambled after the radar contact, but the UFO repeatedly managed to elude its pursuer. The pilot reported that the object had an "ellipsoid" configuration, having a diameter of some twelve diameter and at one point, coming within two hundred meters of his fighter.

Despite its highly auspicious start, the Navy's UFO panel ran aground in 1967, possibly due to a statement made by one of its directors supporting the existence of unidentified flying objects. A hasty retraction was issued by a spokesman, making it clear that the director's opinions did not reflect the Navy's official stance on the matter. Another contrast between the Air and Navy services became evident when the commander in chief of the Argentine Air Force, Brig. Gen. Adolfo Alvarez embraced the existence of "flying saucers" in July 1968, cryptically adding "Otherwise, I wouldn't be an aviator."

On May 29, 1978, Marcelo Pérez, then 17 years old, was a high school student lodging in the dormitories of the Puerto Belgrano Naval Facility (a military installation bedeviled by UFO and paranormal events, as is the case with certain U.S. military facilities). Shortly after ten o'clock at night, the student was enjoying the refreshingly cold air when his gaze happened to wander upward: less than twenty meters over his head he could see two bluish-white lights that darted around at considerable speed over the base. One of the lights zoomed over the base hospital and chapel before vanishing from sight.

According to author Gustavo Fernández, Argentina has never opted to declassify its UFO files in the way that Spain and the United Kingdom have chosen to, nor has there ever been what he terms "a sincere dialogue between civilian and military personnel aimed at dusting off the cases filed in some government office."

While there is no disputing this assertion, members of the military establishment of some other South American countries can be surprisingly candid about their involvement with unknown aerial craft. In December 2002, journalist Cristián Riffo of OVNIVISION managed to interview Hernán Gabrielli Rojas, a retired Chilean brigadier general, regarding a colossal UFO over the deserts of northern Chile.

General Gabrielli recalls that in 1978, while conducting a training flight involving a pair of Northrop F-5E Tiger IIs not far from Antofagasta, their radars alerted them to the presence of a mammoth intruder.

"It was noon and I was flying with captain Danilo Catalán??we were both flight instructors," Gabrielli told the journalist." Accompanying us were avionics tech Fernando Gómez and another trainee. The F?5 is radar?equipped, and a line appeared from side to side??in other words, a trace throughout the bottom side of the screen. A trace for a surface ship, a cruiser, is approximately one centimeter long, but this line went from one side [of the screen] to another. I assumed the radar scope had failed, and I said as much to Danilo Catalán, but his radar also "failed". I then advised the ground radar at Antofagasta and they also picked up the line. We were engaged with these details when we looked toward the east: we were flying from north to south in the vicinity of Mejillones, and saw a deformed cigar?shaped object. Deformed, like a plantain banana. It was swathed in smoke."

The general estimated the size of the craft as being comparable to that of a dozen aircraft carriers. "It was large and must have been some 15 to 20 miles away. It moved in the same direction as us. We had no missiles, guns or anything. As you can imagine, the fright was more or less considerable. We could see a large thing surrounded in smoke, and from which a vapor issued. All of this situation must have lasted some five minutes. We approached the UFO but it was motionless. It neither approached nor retreated??it merely sailed parallel to us. It was quite impressive, because it was truly something strange, and something could be seen in concealment behind the smoke," he recalled.

Although the F-5E's are equipped with gun cameras, the general did not say if any footage had been obtained. The UFO "mothership" eventually vanished, heading toward Easter Island. "The sky cleared and the lines on the radar vanished," he informed Riffo. "However, there had been an object physically flying there. It's not a yarn, let me tell you. It's my only experience with UFOs."

It may be General Gabrielli's only experience, but not the Chilean Air Force (FACh)'s only instance of dealing with the UFO phenomenon. A newswire from Agence France Presse in February 2001 reported that the FACh had turned over classified information regarding UFO sightings to the United States Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). This information would have included sightings in the cities of Arica, Antofagasta and Charanal in Chile's northern regions as well as other cases in the Chilean Antarctic. A stern denial by the military followed--Gen. Ricardo Bermúdez, director of the Comité de Estudios de Fenómenos Aéreos, was quoted as saying during the last International Air and Space Fair held in Santiago de Chile: "The Chilean Air Force has repeatedly stated, to the point of exhaustion, that there are no UFO files."

Uruguay, the smallest of the nations comprising the Southern Cone, puts both of its larger neighbors to shame in this regard. Not only does the country's military establishment manifest its concern over the UFO phenomenon, it has investigated hundreds of reports dating back to the 1930s. Even more surprisingly, Uruguay's CRIDOVNI (which translates as Receiving and Investigating Commission on UFO Claims) agency is a branch of the nation's air force.

The UFO research branch of the Uruguayan Air Force (FAU) can trace its beginnings to an incident which occurred on September 13, 1994, when residents of Paso de las Velas, some 150 km. from Montevideo, allegedly witnessed a UFO crashing into the ground. The event, which occurred after an electrical storm, caused witnesses to became aware of a solid rectangular object crossing the sky noiselessly. The orange rectangle suddenly plummeted to the ground, setting off an explosion which was heard for many kilometers around. Large plumes of smoke filled the air, but no traces of the object at the putative crash site.

In the light of this case, the Uruguayan Air Force decided to accept all UFO-related information and investigate each case directly. In March 2000, Col. Bernabé Gadea, CRIDOVNI's director, discussed the agency's research methods with Cesar Bianchi, a correspondent for Spain's El País newspaper. The setup is in some ways reminiscent of the early Project Blue Book: a three man operation, consisting of Gadea himself, psychologist Carlos Cantonet, and Lt. Col. Ariel Sánchez. UFO reports are dubbed "statements" and the CRIDOVNI troika is quick to state that "There are no UFO investigations taking place anywhere in the world, because we cannot investigate something we cannot identify. For this reason we research
claims??the events narrated by the eyewitnesses."

Ancillary to CRIDOVNI's core staff are meteorologists, aeronautical meteorologists, engineers, air traffic controllers, upper atmosphere physicists, psychologists and physicians. "We are Latin America's first official and public commission on the subject," Colonel Gadea informed the El País correspondent with certain pride, "and we have advised others, such as Chile's Comision de Estudios de Fenomenos Aereos Anomalos (CEFAA) in 1998." Procedure for the Uruguayan research organization is exacting: should physical evidence of an unknown object be left behind following a collision, for example, the "operations department" is responsible for reaching the point of impact and collecting evidence to be submitted to government ministries dealing with agronomy, mining and nuclear energy.

"We are one of the few countries," said psychologist Cantonet,"where the authorities issue an official reply to the phenomenon, whether we label it as "conventional" when we can explain it through our scientific evaluation methods to answer the public's questions, or "unconventional" when scientific advances do not allow us to provide an answer."

Source: Scott Corrales/Inexplicata
http://inexplicata.blogspot.com/2008/07/target-acquired-armed-response-to-ufos.html

- NESSIES NEW WORLD COUSIN DEPARTMENT -

Kelowna Woman Says She Saw Ogopogo Lake Monster

KELOWNA, B.C. - Don't tell Robyn Holman that the mythical lake monster called the Ogopogo doesn't exist.

Because Holman says the elusive beast made an appearance as she and a friend were travelling along the highway near Peachland, B.C., on Sunday afternoon. Holman says she noticed a wave in the water on Okanagan Lake and couldn't believe her eyes when she turned to look.

Holman says she took a picture and is now waiting to get the photo developed. Whether it turns out or not, the Kelowna, B.C., woman is now convinced that the legendary Ogopogo does exist.

The Ogopogo legend has been in existence for as long as settlers have been in B.C.

The first recorded sighting was in 1872, by Mrs. John Allison, and sightings have been recorded regularly ever since, although there is no solid evidence that the creature exists.

First Nations legends call the beast the N'ha-a-itk, or lake demon, according to local lore.

Similar to the monster of Loch Ness in Scotland, the Ogopogo is purportedly a serpent-like creature, somewhere between six and 15 metres long, with a horse-shaped head and a dark blue or brown body.

Source: The Canadian Press
http://www.macleans.ca/science/wire/article.jsp?content=n072274A

- THOSE SILLY FLYING SAUCER FOLKS DEPARTMENT -

Listening to the Grays

Mac Tonnies has been thinking about aliens - the Grays. What if they represent a sort of tangible psychosomatic feedback from our own distant future?

Let’s talk about aliens. The Grays. You know the ones: black, lidless eyes, atrophied mouths, vestigial nostrils. Their bodies, if human, would be considered emaciated. Anonymous pathologists, notably sources known only to the late UFO investigator Len Stringfield, indicated disproportionately long arms with clawed fingers. By almost all accounts, the Grays are described as genderless.

I’ve never know precisely what to make of these quasi-mythical beings. They are many things: harbingers of a new mythology in keeping with the paranoid climate of the 1980s, when the word “Roswell” began registering on our collective cultural radar. In 1987, Whitley Strieber’s Communion epitomized the image of a prototypical Gray on bookshelves around the world. (Some readers found the image intolerably spooky; others noted an alluring quality to the alleged portrait, a sentiment that kindled hope in the faded promises of the saucer contactees.)

The Grays are also metaphor. Their very appearance is in keeping with the visual vocabulary painfully accumulated in the decades after World War II. With their skeletal physique and bulbous heads, the Grays recall famine victims or the walking dead left in the wake of Nazi Germany. If there’s such a thing as Jung’s collective unconscious, it would appear to have a sardonic sense of humor. Their arrival is less communion than confrontation, shocking in both novelty and complexity .

The mythos offers easy, literalist answers to assuage and appall us in equal measure. We’re told they come from a dying world – perhaps circling Zeta Reticuli – in search of genetic material. They’re desperate, fallible, yet possessed of (and perhaps by) a technology that abides by Clarke’s famous maxim. And yet apparently, and seemingly against the odds, they make mistakes. 1947 wasn’t a good year, if the conventional wisdom regarding Roswell is to be implicitly trusted. Having crashed one of their reconnaissance vehicles in the American Southwest, the Grays set about revealing themselves, albeit reluctantly.

Incredibly, they requested favors and made deals with the United States government in their effort to regain autonomy. Later, having duped us with technological cast-offs, they promptly went about insinuating themselves into our bodies and homes, extracting tissue with vampirish zeal. (Like vampires, the Grays are predominantly nocturnal, and their agenda seems burdened with inordinately erotic overtones. It’s likely no accident that Strieber’s cult classic novel, The Hunger, involved the plight of blood-sucking immortals.)

Witnesses claim the Grays act like members of a hive, each unit as unhesitating and pragmatic as a wasp or ant as they busy themselves around incomprehensible devices or tend to incubators, where supposed human-alien hybrids can be seen drifting in vials of fluid. The unsolicited tours they offer abductees fascinate me, regardless of whether they actually occur as described. Whether they realize it or not, the Grays are intently showing us our worst dystopian nightmares; their future is a world of shuffling monotony and gynecological wizardry worthy of Huxley.

Whoever they once were and wherever they’re from, the Grays have suffered a cataclysmic schism between body and mind. Like the replicants of Blade Runner, they’re largely immune to empathy and look to us with a mixture of fascination and sadness. They’ve lost something pivotal and will stop at nothing to get it back — if, indeed, they remember what they’ve misplaced.

We boldly speculate about the potential of mind-uploading and the promise of designer bodies. We plunge forever deeper in to the resplendent weave of our own genome, shuffling molecules with Frankensteinian resolve. The Grays might be projections from our own future: imaginal constructs so heavily freighted with our own unresolved anxieties that they’ve become effectively palpable.

In our rush to debunk, we ignore their warning at our own peril.

Source: Futurismic
http://futurismic.com/2008/07/17/listening-to-the-grays/

- WHAT LURKS IN THE NIGHT DEPARTMENT -

Costa Rica: Satanists or Chupacabras?

The owner of a horse was left startled and frightened when he found his animal lifeless and with a deep hole between its trachea and chest -- a hole through which the heart and liver were removed in an "excessively technical" manner.

"It's a tubular hole between the trachea and the pectoral, very deep, and it was through there, as thought a huge hand with powerful claws had gone inside, [the horse's] heart was removed," said Saul Ramirez, the nephew of the owner of the animal found dead in this mysterious and bizarre fashion, the first incident of its kind in the area.

Satanists or Goatsuckers?

The story that has spread among residents of Lilan is that the animal was slaughtered to remove its heart and liver for a traditional satanic ritual, one performed by the Devil's followers after consuming marijuana and alcohol, feeling the urge to indulge in "black masses" at night in certain regions of the hidden beaches of Cahuita. However, the still-recent manifestation of the Chupacabras was also brought to bear, and all of this because the animal was exsanguinated, barely leaving a small trace of blood.

"What's odd is that if an animal had been involved, it would have bitten it or caused external damage. The only injury it has is internal," added Saul.

The discovery was made yesterday morning. They were looking for the dapple grey horse they use to pull the cart filled with organic fertilizer around the area of Lilan de Cahuita, Talamanca (Limon). The farm is located 6 kilometers from Lilan toward San Rafael. The horse is always left in a pasture behind the Ramirez family's home. To bury the animal, it was necessary to bury it in an enormous ditch after cutting its legs off. Uncle and nephew did quite a bit of shoveling.

For more information, check out this website: http://senalesdelostiempos.blogspot.com/2008/07/costa-rica-satnicos-o-chupacabras.html

Source: Source: Diario Extra (Costa Rica)
(Translation (c) 2008, S. Corrales, IHU. Special thanks to Liliana Nuñez)
http://inexplicata.blogspot.com/2008/07/costa-rica-satanists-or-chupacabras.html
- THINGS THAT GO BUMP IN THE STACKS DEPARTMENT -

Hauntings Spook Wisconsin Library

HORICON — The many gruesome hauntings of the Midwest and Wisconsin held the interest of the audience as Chad Lewis, searcher of paranormal, talked to an appreciative crowd at the Horicon Public Library on Thursday evening.

One place of notable haunting is Little Bohemia, a resort lodge off Highway 51 in Manitowish Waters. It is one of the locations in Wisconsin that portions of the filming of "Public Enemies" took place. That movie, set for release on July 1, 2009, stars Johnny Depp as John Dillinger, the nation's number one public enemy in 1934.

According to Lewis, Little Bohemia was a haven during the off-season where criminals rolled out and wanted to stay for a whole week. In 1934 Dillinger arrived at Little Bohemia with Tommy Carroll, Baby Face Nelson, Homer Van Meter, Three Finger Jack and a number of beautiful molls.

"Due to the heavy firearms they carried and their 'gangster' suits, they were immediately recognized by the owner," Lewis said. "The owners made the mistake of alerting the authorities by smuggling messages out on matchbook covers to members of their family. The Chicago Bureau of the FBI was notified and they rushed to the lodge, waiting for Dillinger to come out. At 9 p.m., three local men, who had finished eating, left the building. Thinking it was Dillinger, the FBI opened fire. The gunfire alerted Dillinger and his men who immediately began to start shooting back. That gave them enough time to escape through the rear windows and vanish into the woods. The FBI forgot to cover the back door."

To those who might choose to visit Little Bohemia, Lewis pointed out that there is evidence to be seen. Among the items of note are Dillinger's personal identification and some guns dating back to his stay there.

And, of course, there are the spirits.

"People believe there are ghosts who still wander the halls. The cabin that Dillinger stayed in has bullet holes in the windows. People who take walks are said to find things in their room rearranged when they return," Lewis said. "And guests have reported to having seen apparitions and hearing strange voices in the cabin that Dillinger stayed in."

"Road Guide to Haunted Locations in Wisconsin" (plus Illinois, South Dakota, Iowa and Minnesota), authored by Lewis and Terry Fish were available for sale, along with "Hidden Headlines of Wisconsin" and "UFO Wisconsin."

Source: Beaver Dam Daily Citizen
http://www.wiscnews.com/bdc/news/297280

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