A Fatal Illusion.
Matthew J. Graeber

From Magonia 62, February 1998

In recent times the tragic suicide of 38 American UFO cult members has graphically illustrated the extremes that fixation and identification with alien life forms can have upon certain individuals. For not only did these troubled souls believe that by taking their lives they were also going to rendezvous with an extraterrestrial space ship that was skirting a comet’s tail, but several of them had even shaved their heads and castrated themselves (perhaps in an effort to mimic the purely cerebral, highly spiritual and, presumably, asexual appearance of the space creatures that tthey anticipated meeting).

Other UFO-related cases of unusual human behaviour involve the complete abandonment of highly sensitive listening posts by several US military personnel in Germany, so they might meet with a flying saucer that they believed was coming to Earth to pick them up, as well as the planned radioactive assassination of local government officials in New York State by UFO aficionados who thought that the authorities were covering up information about a saucer that had crashed near Long Island.

Of course, these are extreme examples and it would be totally unfair of me to paint the entire UFO subculture with the same brush. For many saucer buffs are intelligent, hard-working and well-meaning folks and it is, in fact, precisely because of their good intentions and belief in the UFO phenomenon that they can be easily manipulated and exploited by charismatic, unscrupulous and deluded individuals who may be operating within the saucer movement itself.Interestingly, in the early days of UFO charlatanism, the schemes (much like the developing UFO phenomenon) lacked the sophistication of today’s technological-sounding scams, which not only include an array of bogus classified documents, photos, video footage and crashed saucer artifacts, but also the sanction of a growing number of credulous professionals who treat abductees and reportedly help them to deal with the post-traumatic stress and lingering anxiety of repeated experiences with alien beings that had kidnapped and abused them.

All this at the insistence (and, in many instances, the direction) of self-proclaimed UFO abduction experts, who often lack anysort of medical training or certifica-tion in clinical or forensic hypnosis.


The reported transformational effect of the abduction experience is believed to involve a spiritual, philosophical and intellectual heightening of the individual’s self awareness through a continuing process of contact and educational interaction with alien intelligences that have selected the abductees for some specific purpose.

Several experts believe that the purpose of abduction is grounded in the immediate wants and needs of the aliens who are, apparently, attempting to bolster their own faltering genetic pool through a clone-splicing technique that they have perfected in order to thwart their impending extinction.Several other UFO experts feel that the benevolent aliens are concerned about our own planet’s ever-mounting ecological, sociological and political woes; and that they have been visiting this world and covertly contacting some of its inhabitants in preparation for a kind of social reorganisation which will supposedly take place after the Earth goes through a period of dramatic changes (e.g. the result of a global catastrophe such as a nuclear holocaust, a complete ecological melt-down, a world-wide plague, or a bewildering series of natural disasters). In fact, it has even been suggested that the planet itself may be knocked off its axis by a rogue asteroid and entire continents might be swept away – beneath the angriest of seas.

Still other reported after-effects of contacts with the alien Greys, as they are commonly called in UFO circles, are said to include a sense of cosmic consciousness (or, the magnified awareness of one’s oneness with the universe), the occasional spontaneous cure or remission of various physical, immunological, emotional and psychological disorders, as well as the abductees experiencing marked changes in their career choices, personal interests and long-term goals.

But, beyond all of the above, human contact with the aliens has also produced marked alterations in the way the abductee perceives him or herself, even to the point of their experiencing sexual identity difficulties and/or gross distortions of self, which includes the questioning of their even belonging to the human race or feeling any sort of allegiance to it. That the abductees would identify, sympathise and voice open affection for their captors is not an unknown psychological phenomenon. But, that the abductees would so readily cast off their humanity and profess partial (i.e., hybrid) or total kinship with their alien captors does seem to open the door to much deeper contemplation.


The problem, of course, is that few abduction experts have the requisite medical training to fully comprehend the dangers of hypnotically probing the unconscious mind of the individuals they matter of factly call the abductees – a term which automatically confirms as physically real the very confusing experiences which these perplexed individuals have sought out the experts for. But, even worse than that, the term sets them up for additional experiences, simply because it is common knowledge throughout the UFO community that the Greys always come back for the abductees, and their children too! Perhaps it was this expectation and fear that led a woman in the UK to kill her young grandchildren before they would be kidnapped by aliens?

Beyond this, the UFO ‘experts’ lack of perception regarding the marked psychical background of the so-called abduction experience (i.e., its mythopoeic make-up and dream-like contradictory content) means that the experts must keep coming up with new (and often ridiculous) explanations of how and why the aliens might do something that is obviously nonsensical in character (e.g., the little Greys can reportedly levitate at will, lift and carry the much larger and heavier humans that they have captured – yet, they often walk their victims to their waiting space craft and climb stairs into its hatchway, even though they reportedly filtered through the locked doors and brick walls of the abductee’s home only moments before).

Yet another obvious contradiction pops up in the reports when the dematerialising aliens use metallic instruments to perform invasive surgical procedures upon their human captives, especially when they are also alleged to be capable of inducing the abductees’ bodies to dematerialise as well.

Moreover, today’s medical practitioners can routinely perform similar gynaecological procedures to those that the aliens reportedly employ, but without producing the marked fear and pain which so frequently characterise the medical aspects of the abduction experience.


In many instances, man’s encounters with the unknown were believed to be real contacts with gods, spirits, or demons of various description, and often involved the experiencer being whisked off to magical realms beneath the Earth or sea, high upon a mountain, deep within the forest, or in the firmament above.

Today’s abduction reports often feature similar mythological settings in their scenarios (albeit with a technological accent) and we even discover reports of UFO interiors which have earthen floors and shag rug wall-to-wall carpeting (Indeed, dirt floors in a supposedly highly advanced and medically sterile space craft.) In fact, the UFO which reportedly kidnapped Linda Cortile (the central figure in Budd Hopkins’s book Witnessed) was said to have plunged into the Hudson River with all hands on board rather than flitting off into the starry sky with its cargo of human captives. So, the question immediately arises – was the craft a sub-UFO from Earth’s inner space or an ill-fated space craft from outer space?

While it seems perfectly normal for modern man to dismiss the idea that wee folks, fairies, leprechauns, and hobgoblins actually existed and occasionally interfaced with our forbears, a great many people living in very sophisticated societies as little as a century ago absolutely did believe that such tales were true. Indeed, some folks even believe it to this very day. The point is that, in a hundred years or so, it may be that our contemporary beliefs in UFOs and the pint-sized creatures that pilot them will also become a curiously amusing fact, especially when one considers that the UFO legend’s tales are so highly characteristic of our society and our times (i.e., an era in which our own space-conquering aspirations have been projected upon an array of alien intelligences that we assume to be flourishing somewhere in the cosmos – a fact that Dr C.G. Jung pointed out over forty years ago in his landmark book Flying Saucers: A Modern Myth of Things Seen in the Skies).

In short, we may be lifting our eyes, minds, hopes, and hearts to the skies in search of a super-technological deity instead of the supernatural god that our ancestors worshipped. We may be yearning for an answer to our tiny planet’s ever-mounting problems – fantasising and, in so doing, inventing a new-age panacea (or super-advanced technological response) to the dark side of our own sciences and technologies, and the nuclear/ toxic demons that we have unwit-tingly created and unleashed upon ourselves.

That this panacea should take the form of little creatures with swollen heads that are choc-full of intelligence and good will towards mankind (instead of a host of angels with blaring trumpets bursting through the firmament), informs us that a growing faith in advanced sciences and technology has woven its way into our culture’s unconscious, even to the point that UFOs (i.e., the symbol of the panacea) have been invested with the power of bringing salvation to mankind. A power which they do not possess and in no way deserve.

Man has always feared and revered strange and awesome things that he’s seen in the skies – he had recorded his perceptions upon cave walls, clay tablets, and video camcorders. Perhaps knowing what the signs in the skies actually were never was as important as what the observer believed they were, and the tremendous impact that such beliefs have had upon the human psyche.

Perhaps UFOs have always played a part in the living experience of man. Perhaps they have been called soul-sparks by the ancients and space ships by today’s observers. Perhaps, too, their operators have been known as angels, demons, wee-folks, and Greys. Are these creatures from outer space, inner space, or a space and time existing somewhere in between these divisional concepts? Do they seek to contact us consciously, unconsciously, or on a spiritual level?


Like many great artists, Leonardo Da Vinci was fully aware of the inner mind’s ability to well up images, and we find that even his friend and colleague Piero Di Cosimo commented in his writings on how many wonderful creatures could be found hidden in the stains of masonry work. Of course, we’ve all had some personal childhood experience with seeing various animal shapes in cloud formations; and, if one tries hard enough, quite a few other imaginary things can be spotted lurking in the shadows of leafy trees too.

In the early 1900s, Dr Hermann Rorschach (a Swiss psychiatric pioneer) effectively demonstrated that extraordinarily meaningful material buried deep in an individual’s subconscious could be brought to the surface by having that person attentively mull over a series of ink blots in an effort to describe what they saw in them.

In most instances, just about everyone tends to see the same kind of things in fluffy clouds and Dr Rorschach’s ink-blot plates simply because the general shape of the visually perceived external object that they are gazing at does bear some degree of similarity to a mentally stored image of some other object that they are comparing it to. But, it seems that after one’s initial comparative or reductive processes have been exhausted regarding Rorschach’s ambiguous ink blots, some unusual things start to happen to a person’s perceptive abilities. This also appears to be the case in many UFO observations, and may even play an important role in the close-encounter experiences that occasionally follow them.

As any seasoned field investigator can tell you, quite often the play of reflected sunlight or cloud shadowing upon an otherwise easily discernible abject (such as a commercial airliner’s fuselage) may create false optical cues that can cause a person to misidentify the aircraft and call it a UFO. What’s more, because the startled UFO observer does not have the opportunity to replay the incident and, therefore, cannot possibly verify his or her observation, they may not ever realise that they have mistakenly identified a fixed-wing aircraft for an unidentified flying object.

Interestingly, it seems that even though an individual undergoing Rorschach testing has the opportunity to take a good long look at a particular Rorschach plate, nevertheless the general shape and even the coloration of the ink blot tends to play an important role in the mental formulation of the kind of things that he or she will see in it. This may be a very important factor for UFO researchers to consider because the changing size, shape and coloration of a fleeting UFO or its pulsating lighting may produce (or induce) similar effects upon the experi-encer’s perceptive skills.

Considering the adverse effect that shadow, distance, darkness, and poor weather conditions might have upon an individual’s optical acuity at the time of their sighting – it seems reasonable to suspect that UFO watching, much like ink-blot gazing, primarily involves the observation of a strange object or some pattern of ambiguous lights that are usually seen against the backdrop of a night-time sky.

So, it is not surprising that one’s best attempts to positively identify the object (or the distant lights) are going to become embellished with subjective (apperceptive) phenomena that form around the object, or may tend to fill in the empty space that is situated in between the mysterious points of light – investing them with not only a structural configuration, but also volition and, in some cases, even questionable intent. Naturally, these attributes are projected upon the unknown object by the observer as a result of their emotional and intuitive responses to the situational and confrontational character of their UFO encounter; and, once that happens, their UFO experience broadens and deepens, taking on a subjective tone which may also in-clude the active influence of very primitive introjective processes (i.e., assuming that the object is intelligently guided or that the UFO operators have specifically selected the observer for some reason).

All of these factors must be seriously considered by the objective UFO researcher simply because one cannot be certain which percentage of UFO reports are generated by the observation of space craft from another world (or holographic imagery that is transmitted by an alien civilisation), as opposed to those that may have their origin in the depths of man’s inner space – that is, his unconscious mind. And, of course, there is also the distinct possibility that the UFO experience is both objective and subjective in nature, and that separation of the two is simply beyond our investigative skills.

This appears to be the case where a physically real airborne object (be it a misidentification of some sort, or a real UFO) is observed and then the observer projects his or her own psychical contents upon it – very much like what happens during Rorschach testing experiences.

In his landmark psychological exploration of the UFO phenomenon, Dr C.G. Jung identified the basic discoidal (or round) UFO configuration as being similar to that of a meditative mantra and several other symbolic manifestations of the self which, as we know from our studies of depth psychology, is a very important archetype that tends to spontaneously appear to individuals when there is a profound emotional need present in their lives, or when they are caught up in a seemingly hopeless or overwhelming situation. Both of these prerequisites seem to fit the above mentioned UFO experience model which speculatively describes the UFO encounter as being a kind of display or the symbolic equivalent of some internal conflict that is unconsciously troubling but, nevertheless, affecting the observers at the time of their UFO encounter.

I am not alone with this estimate of the UFO situation, for several other researchers have come to similar conclusions regarding a display factor in UFO events and, quite recently, Dr R. Leo Sprinkle (noted psychologist/ufologist of Laramie, Wyoming) has presented a paper on the psychical analysis of UFO experiences which echoes Dr C. G. Jung’s assertion that the UFO may be (at least in part) a symbolic representation of the observer’s self. But these guestimates are based upon present-day UFO reports and the investigative data that today’s researchers are gathering. It would also bee interesting to attempt to determine what impact the presence of such ambiguous aerial objects may have had upon our forebears.



Curiously, UFO-like shapes and forms have been discovered amidst the human and animal forms depicted in Palaeolithic and Neolithic cave art which is generally thought to have been created during the time when man’s consciousness was first developing (i.e., roughly one million years ago). These, too, are believed to have been produced while early man was involved with welling up mentally stored images of the many animals that he hunted and feared. But, unlike the beautiful deer, bison and horses that appear to have been repeatedly drawn in the same area of the caves and were apparently used for some kind of hunting magic ritual, these unusual circles, braces and chevrons were not drawn in layers and are believed by many experts to have had an independent mythology connected to them. Interestingly,squares, chevrons, and a series of circles and dots commonly called recall-benders frequently pop up in Rorschach testing too.

Although there may be a number of possible explanations for the existence of the UFO-like cave drawings, two seem to be the most plausible. Either the cave man recorded his real-world encounter with such objects, or he dreamed of such forms and the dreams had such a profound impact on him in the waking state that he wanted to share his experience with his contemporaries.

In either case, it appears that these UFO-like shapes were considered important enough to merit separate space upon the cave walls, for they are not pitted and marred like the animal depictions which have obviously been subjected to many missile impacts that probably occurred during a hunting magic ritual. In other words, the UFO-like drawings have been afforded a separate space within the caves, and they probably had an entirely separate mythology associated with them.

The experts on cave art seem to be somewhat perplexed by these drawings and, of course, opinions vary quite a bit regarding their possible meaning. The so-called brackets are often thought to be a stylised version of the female form about to receive male sexuality, while some experts feel that the brackets may be related to the sexual aggression of the cave man himself.

One thing seems certain. These forms are totally unlike anything that is thought to have existed in the cave man’s natural environment. They appear to be symmetrical, possibly aerodynamic in design, and they also have a modern-day technological look about them. While they may not actually be depictions of UFOs, one must admit that they certainly do look a great deal like sketches that today’s observers produce regarding their en
counters with alien space vehicles.

Dare we ponder the notion that contact with alien intelligences could be channelled through the vast reaches of man’s inner space (i.e., his unconscious mind) and that such contacts may have been going on since mankind’s conscious dawning? Dare we believe that human inner space is just as vast, wondrous and awesome as outer space and that we have barely touched the surface of the mysteries and wonders that lie within its depths? Indeed, depths from which the UFOs themselves may hail?

No matter how far we reach out amongst the stars, we must always bear in mind that in our outreaching lies a human motive, and that the further we reach the deeper the want, the need, the fear, or the desire is to touch the face of the unknown.

As we are about to enter the 21st century, we might do well to note that despite our new sciences and great technological advance
ments we are still linked to our distant ancestors and carry the essence of their being within us. Have we become so estranged from this primal fabric that signals from it are thought to be attempted communications from an alien world? What is the signal in the noise of UFO reports? And, even more importantly, why is it being picked up by so many people at this particular point in human history?


Although Hermann Rorschach’s work with the phenomenon of human perception (its alteration or distortion) is generally applied to the diagnosis of pathology, some experts feel that it might be an error to assume that it is not also a viable method for studying the workings of perceptual phenomena in normals too. Dynamic UFO Displays may be one of many such phenomena, for the sudden and oft-times riveting perception of a Dynamic Display or close encounter may trigger a projection function that displaces some of the excess psychical energy (libido) assigned to an internal conflict that may be adversely affecting an individual. Thus, the Dynamic Display variety of UFO experience may bethought of as a self-regulating function of the psyche which is induced into activity by intrusive sensory stimulation (i.e., the impact of encountering a UFO) as opposed to the tranquil meditative process of Rorschach plate scrutiny.

Even in cases where the UFO investigator is completely unable to resolve the UFO report as a misidentification of a conventional airborne object (or perhaps an atmospheric anomaly of some kind), he or she is still left with the opportunity to examine the observer’s recollection of what the unidentified flying object looked like, how it appeared to operate and, of course, how it may have interacted with them.

This is most valuable information because, if we are correct about the UFO’s image and its interactive performance being dramatic representations of the observer’s self condition , we can learn something about the UFO experience’s meaningfulness in regard to the observer’s wants, needs, fears and expectations, along with something about the general make up of their defensive shielding. Indeed, we might consider a Dynamic UFO Display as a form of self-perception and communication that is triggered by the UFO’s presence in our skies – and even more importantly – in ouy lives.


In order to interpret the symbolic materials that well up during the subject’s observation and interaction with the UFO, the investigator must attempt to determine what the UFO (as an image) may actually represent on the one hand (e.g., a misi-dentification of some physical and external airborne object/s, or perhaps a totally unknown anomaly) and how that object’s image and behaviour might be symbolically linked to the psychology of the observer/s on the other hand. It is also apparent that what is observed during a UFO experience and how it is emotionally perceived and responded to is not solely determined by the observer’s conscious estimation of his or her UFO encounter, but also by the active influence of a mixed bag of intrapsychical forces that come into play during the event.

Since we suspect that the primary sensory stimulation (which is visual in most UFO cases) and the observer’s logical estimation of the experience concerning the size, shape, colouring and nearness of the object, is also backed up by emotional, intuitive and instinctual inputs that quickly flow across intrapsychic structures during the event, the UFO researcher should be on the look out for any bits and pieces or archetypal and/or instinctual debris that may be clinging to the observer’s account of their encounter with an unidentified flying object or its occupants.

In regard to this process, it seems that the altered or distorted form of perception which is instigated into activity by the ambiguity of the ink-blot plates in the case of Rorschach testing, and the often-times equally ambiguous, though obviously much more shocking, process of UFO watching primarily involves the subject’s complete fixation with the object, and a general falling away (or perhaps the total absorption) of their reality testing during the experience (e.g., Well, it was quite dark that night and at first I thought it was an aeroplane, or maybe a helicopter … but, then, as it hovered just above my head, I slowly realised that it was something unlike I’d ever seen before ).

Dynamic UFO Display case studies graphically illustrate that UFO researchers do have the ability to identify the symbolic contents in UFO reports which relate to both the observer’s personal life conflicts and even those that may be considered to be far more rudimentary (or archetypal) in character.


If certain visually perceived imagery such as that found in Rorschach’s plates and some UFO configurations do have the ability to deeply penetrate the human psyche and induce the displacement of archetypal symbols, subconscious contents, and psychic energy, we are obliged to further examine this remarkable phenomenon in an attempt to determine if there may be some therapeutic application for such a process.

Perhaps the cinematic replication (i.e., animation or computer animation) of UFO-like imagery which may be custom-designed from the information gathered by the therapist during counselling sessions with his or her patients might be as effective a tool as the purely mentally generated images that guided imagery practitioners presently attempt to direct at an array of physical, emotional and immunological disorders. Perhaps the sudden impact on perceiving a Dynamic UFO Display may enhance or surpass the effectiveness of the passive guided imagery techniques because of its highly confrontational character and deeply penetrating impact on the observer(s).

Perhaps, too, this same sort of psychical shock was the driving force that first nudged early man to conceive of things that did not yet exist, but surely would some day, simply because he could create them.


Transformation of Ufology, part 2.
A look behind the scenes
Matt Graeber

<<< Continued from Part One

(e-mails from the Ufological upper crust) 

Let’s see what the ‘List’ and the lLeaders’ have to say about this growing internet UFO group phenomenon in their midst. How do they feel about their own organizations dwindling membership, declining journal subscriptions and public appeal in the age of the internet saucer-hucksters? (I have changed the names of the e-mail writer’s on this topic to avoid embarrassing the complacent and/or woefully inattentive). Most e-mail entries cited herein have been capsulized and edited by the author. Additional comments byme in italics.

Matt Graeber to Albert Benson, (a pseudonym) 12/12/2005

Albert, I’m wondering if the list members would be willing to post something on the growing internet presence of the Wisconsin group ( BUFO), that is attempting to” Turn” the Carbondale hoax of 1974 into another Roswell-like incident. There seems to be a rash of crash and non-crash saucer stories that are being promoted as Roswell-like events. If the list would log on to “carbondale,pa. ufo crash”, they can see for themselves how outlandish the yarn has become.

Mr Benson did contact his friends and colleagues on the list concerning the request. Here are several of the replies he received on the matter.

From Rick Yost to Albert Benson & the list: 12/16/2005

Hey Al,

“Particularly the ectoplasm and orbs they found at the portal”….

“The Carbondale crash was first promoted by the late flying saucer evangelist Robert D. Barry. He was PR man for the late right wing preacher Dr Carl McIntire’s 20th Century Reformation Hour ministry. Barry operated its one man press arm. He later had a weekly Saturday midnight TV show, “ET Monitor” on McIntire’s TV station.” They are both passed, now, but looks like other nuts are milking it.”

“By the way, Barry was the first one to report in 1989, about the same time same sort of claims were first made about Roswell, that the Kecksburg PA crash involved the recovery of alien bodies. He later withdrew that claim as an error, which was a surprise to me since I don’t think Bob ever heard a UFO story he didn’t like.” 

I wonder how many young saucer enthusiasts ever heard of the Reverend Carl McIntire or, knew that the Roswell story didn’t include alien bodies until 42 years after the incident was first reported?
Albert Benson to Rick Yost & the list: 12/16/2005

Rick, I’m not talking about Kecksburg, but the Carbondale hoax of 1974. If you are interested to find out more about this blatant nonsense, log on to <carbondale,pa. ufo crash>, and check out the buffoonery at any BUFO site or link. Those pushing this hoax as ” Pennsylvania’s Roswell” are without doubt in need of an urgent reality check”.

To Albert Benson, Rick Yost & the list from Scott Morris a major UFO group leader: 12/16/2005

” My observation of Barry, who used to write regularly for Saga and its UFO magazine, was than nearly everything he said – excluding perhaps banal observations about the weather – could be automatically discarded. Too bad that one of his tall tales is still with us.”

I think the people who log on to the Carbondale UFO crash site should be alerted to this observation by one of Ufology’s major group leaders and long-time researchers.

From Albert Benson to the list 12/17/2005

” It’s bad enough that the bizarre crowd at BUFO ( Burlington UFO & Paranormal Radio) is pushing the Carbondale hoax of 1974 as a genuine occurrence, but they’re not content to confine their idiocy to that alone. Now they’re involved in an internet fantasy asserting that the little town of Olyphant PA. which is located about six miles from Scranton, is situated at the “centre of the universe” and modelled after ancient Egypt by alien race! This would almost be funny if it weren’t for the fact that for the uninformed public and the media, this is what passes for the face of Ufology.”

Albert Benson continues,

“And this type of crap only makes it more difficult to convince the scientific community that the UFO phenomenon is a real mystery that merits the most serious investigation on their part.”

Scott Morris replies on 12/18/2005

Al,” I agree that this is pretty dumb, but it doesn’t amount to anything consequential, much less a problem with scientists. My experience is that scientists who are so willing are perfectly able to separate Ufology’s sensible claims from the absurd ones. Scientists who are hostile simply use the latter as an excuse not to bother with the more substantive issues. Hard as it may be for some to believe, not all Ufologist’s problems are Ufologist’s fault.”

“The Carbondale silliness is perhaps worth noting, but nothing to get worked up about. UFOs and Ufology were long ago relegated to the fringes, and something relegated, even if unjustly, is going to attract fringe types. Surely, we have better things to do with our time than to waste it with ritual denunciations of the many nut jobs and liars who are out there, and have always been out there. They’re certainly an irritation, but they’re also no more than a sideshow.” 

Yet another valuable observation that is limited to the list membership. Scott is correct to point out that the list has far better things to do with it’s time than denounce the internet kooks…However, one wonders ” What might they do that they haven’t already done over the course of the last sixty years?
From Tim Connolly (a list member) to Albert Benson & the list: 12/18/2005

“At least this kind of thing provides fodder for ” Ufology-ology”, which consists of remote-viewing history texts which will be written on distant planets in the future of a parallel universe. 

Egads, more material for BUFO to promote!
Joel Simpson (a list member) chimes in: 12/18/2005

“Watch any established field on investigation ( nutrition, astronomy, genetics, linguistics, etc.) and you’ll always find the same sort of nuts looking for attention, and a great deal of confusion in the media…..” I agree with Tom that the tern “Ufology” as understood by the world at large ( not just by us) covers every conceivable aspect of modern culture, from Bermuda Triangles to flying lights, crystal skulls, dogu statuettes, Uri Geller, exobiology and Nostradamus. I’d rather avoid using it. When asked I certainly never say I research UFOs, and usually mumble something about “A strong interest in cataloguing unidentified phenomena recorded throughout history. 

I fully understand Joel’s embarrassment, and it’s too bad that those visiting BUFO/Carbondale sites and links are not privy to his insightful and candid remarks.

 I would also like to point out that Ufology is not actually an established field of investigation, rather, it is an investigative (and occasionally obsessional) hobby that has produced little if any evidence to verify the physical presence of UFOs in our skies. I certainly wouldn’t put it up there with Astronomy or Genetics, etc. 

 * * * * *

Baseless rumours and distortions that are left unchecked foster beliefs, expectations, fears and suspicions that not only are completely unwarranted, they are dangerous too

So, the question arises, why should the serious UFO researchers feel obligated to point out the absurdities, inconsistencies, contradictions and the fabrications of the many internet saucer zealots, charlatans and hucksters? The answer is quite simple. Not to do so is a failing of character, ethics and moral compass that would serve to protect the unsuspecting and the ill-informed from the distortion of repeatedly reading and hearing about, and finally accepting as true, the suspicions, fabrications and “delusions” that have been bandied about and thrust upon them via the net regarding the true nature of the phenomenon.

For baseless rumours and distortions that are left unchecked foster beliefs, expectations, fears and suspicions that not only are completely unwarranted, they are dangerous too. I’ve read lies about the character and professional efforts of an acting police chief who diligently worked shoulder-to-shoulder with UFO field investigators during the Carbondale PA incident of ’74, while also managing to professionally serve and protect his community, the many volunteers and the policemen under his supervision at the site.

Only to have his name and efforts dragged through the BUFOrian muck and malicious fabrications about him by internet saucer-hucksters like Mary Sutherland, and her investigator Ronald T. Hannivig who not only never met or interviewed the acting police chief, they were not even present at the scene while the incident was being investigated in 1974.

Yet, these same self-appointed experts also alleged that the acting police chief (Francis X. Dottle), wantonly participated in a cover up of the incident by tossing bogus evidence into a pond. They even went so far as to post the malicious remark that this fine public servant was not then (At the time of the incident), nor is he now, a friend of the people in the community he served.

These silly fabrications appeared at the <http://carbondale,pa.ufo crash> site which you may log on to and read for yourself. I ask, is it really inconsequential that a man’s reputation be besmirched by individuals who may be totally deluded and lacking any scruples? Should serious UFOlogists continually turn a blind eye to this sort of behaviour and self-serving promotional propaganda because it might be unpleasant, beneath their dignity and embarrassing to deal with?

Is it not shameful to remain silent and allow this sort of chicanery to infect the minds of young and elderly ill-informed people who search the net for reliable information on the phenomenon? I’ve even received two e-mail forwards from a researcher in which the communiqués sender claims that one internet huckster is involved in fraudulent online business practices and directly involved in the suicide death of a teenage group member.

Naturally, there are two sides (or more) to every story, so I’m currently attempting to learn and verify more about the matter. I’ll report my findings in a future Carbondale Chronicles entry for those who are interested in this rather shocking and sad story.

Is there not a lesson to be learned in the fact, that few European politicians and intellectuals of the day took the national socialist movement in Germany very serious when it first came on the political scene. So, impressionable young people, far too young to remember who Neville Chamberlain and Winston Churchill were, sit at their computer’s keyboard and unwittingly log on to saucer-huckster sites who are like sharks lurking in the internet’s waters for careless surfers to happen their way.

Interestingly, my grandson’s high school French teacher recently told me that 65-70% of his students thought that Germany had attacked Pearl Harbor in 1965 or 67. So, should the serious UFO researchers simply assume that this kind of historical ignorance is limited to today’s high school students? How could serious ufologists be so blind (and passive) as to believe that their not setting the record straight on the chicanery and many lies about the UFO enigma is matter of little or no consequence? If that’s the case, why the hell do they even bother to research the phenomenon at all?

If one thinks it’s silly to compare the absurd online UFO propaganda to that of the Nazi’s, one might do well to recall that well over fifty percent of the adult voting population of this country believe in the ‘reality’ of UFOs and would probably support a candidate who shared in their saucer enthusiasm. Perhaps a candidate who would simply promise to release any and all government papers on UFOs could win a close election, especially if that candidate were also a popular entertainment or sports celebrity.

So, while the studious UFO researcher’s utilize the same internet technology to e-mail pithy and complimentary notes for each others enjoyment, and an occasional pat on the back- many youthful UFO enthusiasts slip into the jaws of the saucer-hucksters deception, delusions, lies and distortions. In fact, in some cases they may even be gobbled up by a hucksters chronic, habitual and/or pathological lying.

But, the rub lies not in exposing the internet huckster(s) as a blemish on the face of Ufology.. it lies in the fact that many serious UFO researchers and organization leaders themselves have participated in their own brand of saucer-huckstering over the years (directly and indirectly- unwittingly and consciously). Moreover, calling attention to the speck in the eye of an internet huckster might provoke a response from the debunkers about the beam in the eye of the UFO organization and/or its leadership.

So, it seems that the boundaries between the proponent UFO camps are not very well defined any longer. There once was a sharp line between the organized groups and the kooky contactee movement. Now it just seems that some of the saucer group leaders and experts are more eloquent spokesman, (a.k.a. Classier salesman) than the internet throng. Yet all seem to be well-versed in the art of putting a particular “Spin” on a UFO incident or the phenomenon in general.

Considering that the organized groups have been doing so for almost 60 years, does point to a habitual behaviour pattern, especially since that pattern of behaviour has produced absolutely no incontrovertible evidence or data concerning the phenomenon’s true nature or origin.

What we have is a great deal of speculative fantasy, which stems not from hard spikes discovered in an objective database but, all-too-human wants, needs and desires concerning the phenomenon’s assumed importance and meaningfulness to mankind, and the equally-assumptive importance of the researcher’s own investigative efforts.

This near-obsessional behaviour pattern was first established by the baby-boomer ” Nuts and Bolts” school of Ufology which is presently on the verge of extinction. The bare bones of their contribution to Ufology will be that they successfully managed to dangle a promised carrot before the noses of the American public, the media and themselves for six decades.

It was they who pampered, endured and invited the hucksters of Ancient Astronaut tales and Bermuda Triangle yarns to their conventions and symposia. They even participated in the proliferation of Saucer-Crash Fantasies and the Abduction Mania. They did all this to promote membership numbers, draw larger crowds to their conventions, make book deals and seek increased journal subscriptions.

One asks, how much ‘objective researching’ is to be found in these business pursuits? ( e.g., what percentage of the monies collected actually went for research, after operating costs and salaries for the group’s top brass were siphoned away?) Moreover, if the internet hucksters are following in the path of the old guard with better and far more dynamic internet UFO presentations to entice the curious and the gullible, is that not but an extension of the sins of UFOlogists past?

The sociologists and folklorists of the future will look back upon the late 20th and early 21st.century’s transformation of Ufology into an “unbridled” entertainment industry (or “UFOOLogy” as it is more accurately described) and realize that the two terms differ only in the addition of one vowel. Ufology is no longer, nor has it ever truly been a purely pseudoscientific pursuit – it has blossomed into a full-blown sub cultural entertainment industry that has profound romantic appeal within our youthful society. Its roots lie in America, which Dr Carl G. Jung once called the land of science fiction and fantasy – but the American UFO malaise is now becoming a pandemic that has spared throughout the entire planet through the world wide web.

The fossil remains of it all will point to a mid-20th century belief in the existence of and pursuit of phantoms of the skies. 21st century UFOOlogy will probably seek out the phantoms through paranormal or spiritually-based investigative avenues, assumptions and beliefs – some of which may be serious, while most will probably be pure humbug. However, the answer will always seem to lie just beyond their grasp, around the next corner, over the next hill. (Much like the nuts and bolts camp’s carrot).

Such is the nature of true phantoms; they antagonise, mesmerize and befuddle the blind man who senses their presence but, can offer no definitive description of them.. except for hearing the curious beating of their wings and catching a faint whiff of their fleeting presence. Could it be that UFOs are modern man’s harpies?

The pantheon of UFO experts will continue to come and go, along with the parade of witnesses and the few remaining organized saucer groups. The UFOs however, will persist and endure the many ups and downs of UFOOlogical fantasy, theorizing, speculation and assumption – and in time, a new generation will take up the quest and start swinging their white canes at the fleeting phantoms. Could it possibly be that the canes will always be far too short, and the answer to the riddle of the UFOs will simply remain beyond our physical and mental grasp?

Example No.5 (UFOs from inner-space?)

Perhaps in some strange way “the UFOs are but a reflection of ourselves”, as James Moseley suggests – aimlessly flitting about like the modern man’s hopes, fears and aspirations on the phenomenon. Perhaps our ancestors were better equipped to assimilate these “signs in the skies”, for in their lifetimes things like these aerial displays were not only anticipated and readily interpreted, they were actually prayed for.

Have we somehow lost touch with the facility of mind that once fostered beliefs in visions, portents, divine warnings and angels yet, search the skies to once again experience? Or is it all just a growing new age mysticism and religiosity appearing in the guise of technological marvels that homotechnos currently beholds in awe, wonder and masked reverence?

Has the emotional and spiritual nature of our inner being been schooled out of us by the customs, demands and the technological advancements of modern-day living? Indeed, does everyone really think that such powerful human emotions would simply dry up and blow away because it was no longer chic or, politically correct to speak of them?

The organized group elites may scoff at such thoughts, in the same manner which they scoff at the internet huckster movement in their midst. They seem to have an overly confident Col. George Armstrong Custer attitude about what they perceive to be nothing more than a small hostile encampment that they “look down upon” from their lofty UFO research headquarters. However, their status in saucerdom, with the press, the entertainment media and the American public’s focus of interest is most assuredly headed for UFOOLogy’s happy hunting grounds.

– Matt Graeber


Transformation of Ufology, part 1
UFO Idols with feet of clay
Matt Graeber

PART ONE: UFO Idols with Feet of Clay

There has been a great deal written about the ’ Transformational Effects’ of the UFO experience upon the observers and the interfacers with alien creatures. Many times these incidents are alleged to have produced an enhanced form of spiritual awakening, heightened awareness, or a realisation of one’s cosmic connection with the universe and its many intelligent life forms. In extreme instances, the UFO experience is even said to have produced “Hybrid” half-human and half-alien beings that are presently walking amongst us.

This folly is further expanded by a form of unbridled one-upmanship, in which stories are routinely topped by more outlandish and embellished yarns, and we even find that not only have some fellows claimed to have discovered and identified more than 86 separate alien species presently visiting our planet but, there is an American abduction expert who proclaims that the “Greys” (small statured bulbous-headed alien creatures), actually absorb life-sustaining nutrients in the air through their skin.

As far as I’ve been able to determine, the expert doesn’t mention the rather delicate matter of how the Greys might un-absorb their body’s waste materials. Perhaps, they don’t, and that’s why they smell so horrid on the numerous military base’s autopsy tables!?

But, rather than rehashing the claims and the counter-claims which these many yarns have provoked from the saucer zealots, UFO enthusiasts, sceptics and debunkers – I will discuss the “Transformation of Facts” that the unobjective UFOlogists quite often bring to fore concerning their misinterpretation and misrepresentation of the significance of their truly poor quality reports.

It was then that I first realized that pointed questions and opposing points of view were not very welcome within the established UFO group community… 

Example No.1  (A blast from the past!)

I attended a UFO conference which was held in a high school auditorium at Pottstown, Pa. back in the early 70′s, and the director of the UFO group speaking at the event presented a number of photographic slides of purported UFOs for the audience to view. Many of the photos were images from rather old cases and were frequently written about by the popular UFO authors of the day. However, several were new to me and I found myself particularly interested in one slide that featured a pair of copper-coloured disks flying in tight formation amidst the backdrop of a brilliant blue sky.

The disks were photographed from an approximate angle of about 40-45 degrees, and showed the pair of identical copper-coloured craft from the bottom with a pronounced leading and side edge. I was taken by the fact that this photo was very clear, well-cantered in the frame, and did not have any distortion which might have been attributed to the craft’s movement, camera movement, or the blurred, fuzzy and slightly out-of-focus character of many other UFO photos also being displayed.

When the speaker’s presentation ended, and the lights were rekindled in the school’s auditorium there was a question and answer period in which inquiries were fielded by the speaker. At one point during this period, I raised my hand and asked the speaker if he might share a bit more information about the photo of the copper-coloured UFOs with us. He readily admitted that he didn’t know very much about the photo’s origin except that it came from a small village in South America.

I asked if he could tell us something about credibility the person who took the photo, when it was taken, where it might have been taken and how it ended up in the assortment of photos he had presented. The speaker seemed to be a little stunned by my questions and replied that the photographer is unknown and presumably died in a mudslide that destroyed his entire village.

The speaker didn’t know the name of the village or, the date of the disaster. He also didn’t know when the photo was taken. So, it would be virtually impossible to link the photo to a mudslide catastrophe that was published in newspapers somewhere in South America without at least knowing the approximate location or year of the incident. Even with knowing that, it would still be an investigative stretch to assume one positively knew anything about the reliability of the photos themselves.

When I mentioned the fact that these photos were probably not the best examples for audience presentation, an obviously annoyed lady seated in the front of the auditorium challenged my statement with a rather vehement remark. It was then that I first realized that pointed questions, and opposing points of view were not very welcome within the established UFO group community. (i.e., it appeared that many of the conference attendees hadn’t come to learn anything. They just wanted their preconceived beliefs on UFOs to be confirmed and/or bolstered by the presenters).

Interestingly, I had collected coins as a youngster, and suspected that these copper discs were actually coin planchets that hadn’t been struck at the mint. (viz, American Revolution period large cents), for both appeared to have well-defined nicks along their outer edges, much like circulated coins viewed under magnification. I never got to mention this to the speaker, who shrugged off my questions by proclaiming that “he thought” the photos were interesting and that’s why he presented them at the conference. In other words, the UFO photos were not investigated for authenticity and photographer credibility before being presented to the audience.

I later reproduced the appearance of the UFO photo, by placing two large cents on a piece of transparent Plexiglas and viewed them from a similar angle with the sky as the background. The result was astonishingly similar to the mysterious South American photo shown at the Pottstown conference. This was the first of many disappointing experiences with the fawning group enthusiasts and their leadership I would have during my eight year stint as the director of UFORIC the Philadelphia-based UFO Report & Information Center, 1972-80. (Although, I’ve been semi-active in the field for the last 33 years). 

EXAMPLE No.2 (Implants anyone?)

I attended a speaking engagement at a gathering of the Society of American Electrical and Mechanical Engineers in 1976 – in which I was to follow an elderly gentleman who had been researching UFO reports for decades. As I entered the dining room of the hall I encountered a young man assisting the primary speaker (we’ll call him Mr.Compton), who was quite visually handicapped and poking about in a upright dining room cabinet which doubled as the speaker’s podium and had a microphone affixed to it’s top. Inside the cabinet small oil and vinegar bottles were stored before being placed on the dining tables with the dinner salads.

Although the young man was repeatedly telling the speaker that only vinegar and oil bottles were stored in the cabinet, the legally blind speaker persisted in rummaging about in the cabinet as if looking for something else to be there. (It was quite strange and an oddly-amusing affair). I do not recall learning what Mr. Compton actually thought might have been nestled within the cabinet.

As the speaker finally settled down behind the podium and the microphone was adjusted to his satisfaction, the lights in the dining room dimmed and the slide presentation and the experts lecture simultaneously began. The first slide was a photo of an unfurled American flag. Mr. Compton said, “I always show this slide first because I believe in truth!” A voice from somewhere the darkness chimed in with something about “leaping tall buildings in a single bound” but, Mr. Compton didn’t seem to be distracted by this comical comment as he continued, “I’ve been investigating UFO reports for many years, and let me make it perfectly clear… I’m no contactee! However, I do know a few, and if you listen to what I have to say you will be endowed by the friendly saucers and able to protect yourself from the hostiles”

Then a barrage of slides was shown in rapid succession with a quick explanation concerning the photographer/witnesses credibility and the date and location of the alleged incident. Many of the photos were quite old and were obviously borrowed from UFO books and group journals. Most were poorly centred in the frame, blurry and of quite distant or small objects.(Were they insects on the wing, birds, Frisbees or alien space ships, stars or planets, it was quite difficult for anyone to tell with any degree of certainty).

Then Mr. Compton warned the audience of the dangers of approaching the Globe, Football-shaped and Bee Hive-like UFOs and how to thwart their attacks with a common hand-held flashlight. Apparently, one could also use the flashlight to perform a ‘UFO Friendship Test’, which was fully explained in Mr. Compton’s 32 page pocket-sized booklet which was on sale in the rear of the hall.

Perhaps the most remarkable part of Mr. Compton’s presentation concerned his revelations concerning a middle-aged woman (Mrs. Brotmann), who was out walking her beagle puppy at sunset on a summer’s eve when she was struck down by fleeting a 2.5 to 3 inch diameter UFO.

According to Compton, Mrs Brotmann had just been bending over while adjusting her puppy’s collar and as she was starting to straighten up she was shocked to see the tiny UFO flying straight towards her face. She tried to take evasive action but, the glowing UFO was travelling so fast that it hit her squarely in the forehead knocking her to the ground, lodging itself in her brain! A bit dazed and bewildered Mrs Brotmann finally regained her composure and was amazed to realize that there wasn’t a mark on her face to show where the UFO had entered her cranium. Amazingly, after this incident Mr Brotmann’s IQ was greatly enhanced and according Mr Compton she is now an engineer (Type not specified).

Would it be a stretch of sceptical speculation to point out that the flag slide and the ‘engineer’ connection in the Mrs. Brotmann story seems to be a bit ‘American’ Society of Mechanical and Electrical ‘Engineers’ directed!?

An obviously concerned lady seated near the podium asked Mr Compton if he had taken Mrs Brotmann to the hospital to have x-rays taken of her head injury. Compton quickly replied that he wanted to do so but, Mrs Brotmann flatly refused treatment because of the voices in her head. Apparently, these were the voices of the UFO operators who did not want their presence publicly revealed. Moreover, the x-rays would be lethal to the tiny Venusians who reportedly have been visiting Earth since the dawning of mankind.

This was the very first of the many so-called implant stories I’ve heard of over the years. Compton dates the alleged incident to the early fifties. Naturally, I was quite shocked by the character of Mr. Compton’s presentation and followed up with a rather capsulized talk on investigative methods employed at UFORIC. After this experience I decide to avoid public speaking engagements on UFOs, press interviews and I rarely participated in radio talk show programming on the phenomenon. However, I did answer questions from the public over the phone at UFORIC because we were in fact, a UFO ‘report and information’ centre.

While the above may sound too bizarre to be a factual account, I can assure you that it is quite factual, and that even stranger/wilder yarns are presented at many UFO conferences and websites. So, is there any wonder why mainstream scientists feel that something is not quite right about these wacky UFO experts and enthusiasts? Is there not a reason to suspect that they avoid and ignore the subject for fear of being associated with the kooks and crack pots who have always populated the largely unchecked and totally unregulated Ufological landscape.

Moreover, why is it that if someone does question the validity of a reported incident, the UFO groups generally do not appreciate and applaud that individual’s objectivity and tenaciousness – rather, they label him or her a sceptic and debunker while leaping to the defence of many less than credible eyewitnesses and fantasy-prone self-proclaimed UFO experts who bandy these yarns about.

All this while the so-called serious ufologists have never proven that UFOs actually exist in the nuts and bolts sense of the word in 60 years of intensive inquiry, by thousands of group members and field investigators- not to mention the combined efforts of hundreds of professional consultants in the disciplines of metallurgy, psychology, optics, astronomy, biology, etc. etc.

Moreover these same groups invite Abduction Experts. Implant Researchers and Reversed Engineering promoters to their conferences to speak about aliens absorbing nutrients through their skin, telepathic communiqués from benevolent alien races, and the mass production of hybrid babies aboard colossal motherships which are reportedly laden with human foetuses in liquid-filled jars. (What utter and nonsensical drivel!)

What are we to think of these deluded folks who inflict themselves and their half-baked theories upon the unsuspecting public, the all-to-eager UFO group members and press with “wild” and completely “bogus” UFO tales? What are we to think of so-called serious research UFO group leaders who stand by and permit these same individuals to thrust themselves upon their membership? I actually came across a fellow (we’ll call him Fred), who had achieved some degree of acclaim in UFO circles with his outrageous crashed saucer investigations, alleged alien and MIB encounters, not to mention his own abduction report. Fred was actually an individual dealing with serious mental heath issues.

Yet, Fred and the small group he is an important member of has a growing internet following consisting of many young people who are Yahoo members, and quite a number of senior citizens who are interested in the group’s specialized senior services, such as prayer groups for those with spiritual, emotional and physical wants and needs.

Additionally, Fred had proudly posted information about his own improving mental health status and active MH volunteer contributions on the internet for all to read yet, other UFO researchers continually posted his UFO stories and reports at their sites, often thanking Fred for his contribution to ‘serious ufology’. Fred was even the focus of an article in a leading European UFO magazine. Obviously, all had taken his reports at face value and never looked into the matter of his health and veracity before listing such hokum as credible UFO sightings and alien encounters reports.

I guess that a schizophrenic could have a reliable sighting experience but, how would one be able to establish such a report as factual vs. hallucinatory in nature?

So, the question immediately arises, who is at fault here? The mental patient or the shoddy UFO researcher’s who post such potentially delusional material for UFO enthusiasts to read and readily accept as reliable data? Even the very best computer virus scans and firewalls cannot protect a serious researcher’s UFO database from that sort of contamination.


The entire alien affair reminded me of a time as a youngster, when I first saw an authentic ‘Jackolope’ at a hunting lodge. From what I later learned a taxidermist was producing the spoof-creature (A jack rabbit with small horns) for hunters who wanted to bamboozle less-experienced sportsmen in their group

EXAMPLE No.3 (The fossil remains of Mythical Creatures and Saucer Pilots).

In a 1996 book on the discovery of many mythical creature fossils, a Texas fellow, said to be a palaeontologist, is suspected of actually sculpting and otherwise fabricating the so-called skeletal remains of mythical creatures, which included mermaids from both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, leprechauns and several other creative works. Although the books titled clearly identified it as being about the discovery of  ‘mythical’ creatures, one of the major UFO group leaders of the day was so may captivated by a photograph of the alleged skeletal remains of a small creature that was imbedded in a concave plaster of Paris cast. (Sort of like a little alien on the half-shell).

The ufologist thought that the skeletal remains closely resembled those of a downed saucer pilot who reportedly crashed his spacecraft just prior to the turn of the 20th century at Aurora, Texas. Indeed, a UFO report involving the landing of two cigar-shaped objects at Ledonia, Texas was reported to have happened on April 16th 1897, and the Aurora crash (about a hundred miles away) was said to have occurred the following day. The fossil find story was cautiously but, favourably promoted in the UFO group’s journal where it received wide attention by the membership. After all, if the group’s leader thinks there’s something to this story. Well, there must be something to it.

As time passed, and the story started to unravel, the group leader decided to retire albeit, without ever fully-acknowledging that he’d been mistaken about the significance of the bogus alien fossil finding at Ledonia. Jim Moseley of the zany UFO newsletter Saucer Smear, had been gently chiding the ‘Czar’ as he called the group leader about the bogus fossil; and I even drew a cartoon concerning the controversy which compared the fossil to that of Warner Brothers cartoon character ‘Marvin the Martian’, who as you may recall is actually Bugs Bunny’s outer-space nemesis.

The entire alien creature fossil affair reminded me of a time as a youngster, when I first saw an authentic ‘Jackolope’ at a hunting lodge. From what I later learned a taxidermist was producing the spoof-creature (A jack rabbit with small horns) for fun-loving hunters who wanted to bamboozle their sons and younger, less-experienced sportsmen in their group. It’s the hunter’s equivalent of “Snipe Hunting” with young boy scouts at camp for the first time.

So if we find such ‘ufoology’ flourishing at the very top of the heap in the sub cultural community of Saucerdom or (Saucerdumb), take your pick. One wonders, how deeply might such a malady infect the group’s internet list membership and the independent serious UFOlogists who look to these groups and lists for database resources? 

EXAMPLE No.4 (On the Demise of 20th Century Style Ufology)

While hearing from a researcher about the recent ‘Mexican Roswell’ report”, nd the sad state of contemporary ufology in general, the subject of the Carbondale, Pa. 1974 UFO crash came up. He was somewhat amazed to learn that a small group from Wisconsin had managed to revive the long-ago hoax, and was currently claiming it to be a genuine saucer crash that was covered up by the military and the government. In fact, they wanted people to think ‘Carbondale/Roswell’, since they believed the case was actually much more significant than Roswell, and had many more reliable eyewitnesses. (Claims which are not only completely incorrect, they’re absolutely ridiculous too!).

This group ( BUFO), is headed by an aggressive internet impresario (Mary Sutherland), who not only dabbles in saucers but, also operates an online match-making service and prayer services for those in need, while also featuring psychic readings for those daring enough to peek into their future, at very reasonable rate of just $2.95 per minute. But, that’s just the tip of the iceberg on her UFO and paranormal internet enterprises which include an abductee support group and an array of items for sale at her online store and Gift Shoppe in scenic Burlington, Wisconsin.

The serious UFO researcher, who had long been studying a particular variety of UFO sighting seemed to be somewhat dismayed that all this was going on while most of the fellows he had been contacting on ’ The List’ probably felt that the Carbondale case was indeed a complete and clumsy hoax. Additionally, the Wisconsin group had established a dominate presence on the net at the <carbondale, pa. UFO crash> site, and was even skilfully promoting their crash and cover up yarns on internet radio (audio) and TV (video) links.

Of course, there is a so-called Mexican Roswell, the Kecksberg, Pa. incident which is often touted a Pennsylvania’s Roswell. The Carbondale, Pa. hoax which the Wisconsin group is actively attempting to turn into a Roswell tourist and entertainment industry – and of course, even the Rendlesham Forest case is being foolishly called the UK’s Roswell.

It seems that if you prefix or suffix the name of any downed or un-downed saucer story with the word ‘Roswell’, the story automatically takes on an added dose of mystery, conspiracy and authenticity which far over-shadows any amount of obviously embarrassing evidence that might dismiss the entire incident as a fabrication or misidentification.

For many in the UFO community, Roswell is the line in the sand over which brutally vehement controversy rages. There is little middle ground on the topic, either you believe or you do not! If you do not, you are labelled a sceptic, a debunker and someone who has simply gone over to the other side.

Even though I never publicly said I do not believe the Roswell incident is very accurately portrayed in the vast saucer literature. I have become something of a piranha in the field simply because I questioned the veracity of two alleged star eyewitnesses concerning the Roswell incident. (Both of whom were later discredited and believed to have been discredited by other proponent UFO researchers).

Continue to Part Two >>>


Aztec, that terribly romantic yet horribly aromatic desert bloom is in flower again!
Michael McClellan and Matt Graeber

First published in Magonia 89, August 2005

The 1948 Aztec, NM downed UFO retrieval story is one of saucerdom’s legends that seems to have defied all the attempts to explain it away as a clumsy and very obvious hoax. However, the many “resurrections” of this story, in various forms, is just about as remarkable and interesting as the original tale itself. In fact, one fellow on the internet describes it as the “Dracula” of saucerdom which simply will not die no matter how may stakes are driven through its heart.

First touted by two con men who actually were convicted of their fraudulent schemes (perpetrated in connection with the alleged UFO incident, reversed ET engineering devices, and the rediscovery of the Rangely Oil Fields in Colorado), the story has been revised, fine-tuned and sporadically presented to an unsuspecting American public and uncautious media people.

Like the Roswell, NM, UFO incident, The city of Aztec now has its own festival celebrating the non-incident’s anniversary; and has even managed to build a brand new library (costing 1.9 million dollars) from the tourist monies spent at the nation’s other alledged place of alien demise. As one sceptical Texan* aptly put it, “Yeah, that’s mighty big bucks in those crash sites of imagination…mighty big bucks indeed!”

Interestingly, rumours on the internet proclaim that plans are underway to memorialize the Carbondale, PA saucer crash of 1974 at a “Mysteries Museum” to be established somewhere in Lackawanna County, PA. The Carbondale crash doesn’t boast of alien bodies but, it reportedly has lots of saucers flitting in and out of inter-dimensional gateways (or vortices) in the area.

As one realizes, memories fade quickly in normal life, and even more quickly in the land of the UFO subculture. The question is whether or not the faded memories are genuine, or if they are “conveniently selective” to the numerous “hucksters” of the Aztec story.

It would not serve us well to simply name the individuals involved in the present-day rehashing of this continuing UFO myth. Nor, would it be overly enlightening to revisit the original 1950 Frank Scully book on the incident and show how distorted even it has become. This article is dedicated to the memory and researches of Michael McClellan who spent a great deal of time investigating the Aztec incident as it was presented in 1974 by Robert Spencer Carr, a retired professor of mass communications at the University of Southern Florida. So, I will not whip out my ol’ aerosol can of agent orange and attempt to defoliate the dense forest of UFOOLogy that IS the Aztec story of today.

 Rather, I will take you back 30 years, to a time when my dear departed friend Mike McClellan methodically investigated the then 27 year old Aztec downed saucer yarn. Mike had written several articles for magazines and the APRO (Aerial Phenomena Research Center) journal during the mid-seventies on the Aztec case and I’m happy that this draft from one of those essays has survived for Magonia’s readers to peruse and enjoy..

So, here’s what Mike had to say (unedited and unabridged) regarding his inquiry into the Aztec, New Mexico flying saucer retrieval story and the charlatan who was then bandying it about the country. Mike was a member of both APRO and UFORIC at the time. (Commentaries in italics are mine.)

Aztec, Michael McClellan 1975

The obituary columns of our daily newspapers alphabetically list the demise of individuals who, unless celebrities, are noteworthy of no more than an inch or so of space declaring that their existence of being had departed its mortal shell. The shell decays and disappears. For a brief moment in time, lives are disrupted – however, soon return to normal. Death temporarily takes a back seat. Mortal matters take precedence over memories.

Probably the most famous and remembered death is that of Jesus Christ’s. From that point historians may argue over the second most important death in the world. Most likely they would never be in agreement. Or is it possible that the second to the thirteenth important and historical deaths may have occurred very recently? Even in our century? In fact, could they have occurred twenty-seven years ago? According to Robert Spencer Carr, a retired professor, they may have.

At a press conference in 1974, Carr revealed information which either surpasses all other news of our day or is the fantasy of an imaginative mind comparable to Isaac Asimov or Gene Rodenberry (Star Trek).

My primary encounter with Carr’s story was while I was stirring coffee and listening to an excited secretary tell about a spaceship which had reportedly crashed in a desert area. Lifeless alien occupants had been removed from the craft and preserved. She had heard the story on the radio and, while not sure of the details, thought that it recently occurred. 

Robert Spencer Carr was a kindly old gent who looked very much like a Kentucky Colonel. He had the ability to tell his story so convincingly that he appeared on numerous syndicated radio and TV talk shows. He also lectured at quite a number of universities throughout the country and caused something of a stir in the UFO community too.

 With the intention of reaching the crux of the story, I began an investigation. If there was any hint of truth to the account it must be the news story of the century. This, according to Carr, who has known of the incident for some twenty-five years during which time he been an undercover investigator for the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena (NICAP).

Fearing possible ridicule, embarrassment, and loss of credibility with students and associates which would jeopardize his position, he decided to remain silent until he recently retired as professor of mass communications at the University of South Florida. Carr says the year was 1948, the month February, the day probably the 13th.

Three radar stations were tracking an unknown at 90,000 feet altitude. The stations were located at Edwards Air Force Base, California, Colorado, and Northern Colorado. The object was making 18,000 knots per hour which is really quite fast even in those days. It stopped at about 10,000 feet where it went out of control, circled, and fluttered helplessly to the ground.

Because three radar stations were involved, triangulation was possible and showed that the object had touched down three miles west of Aztec, New Mexico, south of the Colorado line. The landing was a soft one, the craft being on automatic pilot. A tripod extended from the craft and the extraterrestrial ship came to rest on the desert.

Law enforcement officers, including local sheriffs, rushed to the scene.(According to Carr, the old timers there remember the incident very well.) The lawmen, guns drawn, approached the thirty foot saucer-shaped disc and looked inside the craft. That moment could have only been electrifying as the officers saw through a hole the size of a thumb in the dome of the craft. Twelve little men slumped over their instruments.

The aliens had died from decompression, probably due to the hole; a death probably similar to that of the recent Russian cosmonaut’s misfortune. Shortly after the landing, military aircraft began appearing in the area. The roads to the area were cordoned off by air police. Residents from as far as Farmington, New Mexico journeyed to the area, their curiously aroused by the unusual number of planes.

As one can immediately see, this story has elements quite similar to that of the Roswell UFO Incident which, at the time of Mike’s writing, were not yet revealed to Stanton Friedman by Retired Major Jesse Marcel who was the Intelligence Officer at the Roswell Army Air Force base in 1947.

Officials managed to get the door of the spacecraft open and the twelve bodies were removed. They were all males, their weight ranging from eighty to ninety pounds. Their build was fairly muscular and solid. They had light hair of varying shades, their eyes were blue. They all wore the same dress, a blue uniform with no insignia .

Carr’s descriptions of the aliens is not a carbon or should I say Xerox copy of the Roswell extraterrestrial cadavers, but there are some similarities.

The alien bodies were loaded aboard an airplane and flown to Edwards Air Force Base as was their saucer. They were later moved to Wright Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton,Ohio where Carr alledges they remain. One of the bodies was selected for autopsy and six surgeons were flown in from Washington, D.C. A middle range specimen was chosen and his organs laid out on a table.

This senario also has Roswell similarities which include the unexplained ablity of the military to load a spacecraft that is reportedly wider in diameter than the opening of any then-existing aircraft’s side, rear cargo, or bomb-bay doors.

The blood type was “O” and the genes and chromosones would have matched with those of Earth women. Verification of the incident is offered by Carr. He was at his job in Florida some years back when he overheard a biologist (who was a member of an elite inner circle of knowledgables) read a report to Carr’s chief describing characterististics of the aliens. The biologist, incidently, is now deceased.

Carr has spoken personally with an officer who was present in Aztec when the extraterrestrial bodies were removed from thier vehicle. The officer assisted with the measuring, weighing, and loading of the little men.

A military nurse who was present at the autopsy told Carr when he spoke with her that she knew of no reason why she should take the secret to her grave. She was seventy-three years old when she made her revelation to Carr. Unfortunately, Carr is unable to reveal the names of the people with whom he had spoken. Their identities cannot be revealed, since doing so would cause them irreparible damage.

The introduction of the mysterious nurse in Carr’s story predates the report of a similar person in the Roswell “star-eyewitness” Glenn Dennis’ story..

Luckily, Carr was a security guard who spent three or six months of his service guarding hanger #18 at Wright Patterson. (On one radio interview Carr stated three months. He told me six months.)

Carr told Mike that his sergeant’s name at Wright Patterson was Arthur Bray.

Bray is a retired master sergeant; he was with the Air Police prior to to his retirement in 1970 and was an eyewitness to the storage of the bodies. Carr related that Bray “Had the key to the (hanger) door and let people in and out.”

Bray fled to Canada and subsequently returned to a Midwest State. Unluckily, the only Arthur Bray there turned out to be an Army man who retired in 1940. He had no knowledge of the incident and was never stationed at Wright Patterson.

Mike spent quite a bit of time and money on this investigation and I even came across an Arthur Bray of Canada in late 1974 who was a UFO researcher. When I asked him about being a sergeant at Wright Patterson he just laughed and said he was unaware of Carr’s usage of the name Arthur Bray in his saucer story. The Canadian Mr.Bray and I shared investigative data on a UFO/Pickup truck pursuit case that reportedly occurred in Ottawa on the night of Nov. 8th,1973. The case received wide publicity in the U.S. and Canada. Mr.Bray was the first researcher to interview the witnesses.

In addition, says Carr, there are several hundred other people who have the inside information. They consist of academic men, anthropologists, aeronautical engineers, Army intelligence officers, electronics experts, metallurgists. and so the list goes. Again, no names are available and Mr. Carr is the only individual who has dared to surface with the incredible story.

Truman was most assuredly informed of the incident but, according to Carr, never came to see the space craft or its occupants. What he actually knew is moot, since he is no longer available for comment. Moreover, Carr stated that Eisenhower saw the ship and its occupants in April after his inauguration. As Carr relates, Eisenhower was at Palm Springs, California. Using a golf outing as a ploy, he boarded a helicopter and was flown to view the remains.

The president decided the American public was not yet ready for a disclosure of such gravity and the discovery remained top secret.

This, too, smacks of the Roswellian folklore that many have come to know and embrace as fact. But, in one account, Truman did view the craft and the alien bodies; and Eisenhower was the one who feigned a golf outing and disappeared for 12 hours to not only see the aliens, he allegedly made a deal with living extraterrestrials at nearby Muroc, Air Force Base. His alleged twelve-hour absence from the prying eyes of reporters was attributed to a bogus emergency visit to a dentist’s office.

Carr advises that forty reporters knew of Eisenhower’s flight and were there to see him leave in the helicopter. Apparently, he feels that the presence of the reporters and their witnessing of his departure lends credibility to his yarn. The names of the reporters have not yet been revealed. Even if they are we have proof that Ike took a ride in a helicopter, nothing more. The bodies are now in cryonic suspension, a sophisticated form of freezing, somewhere in Wright Patterson.

Where did Carr acquire his original information? As he explained, he received a manuscript of a book prior to publication from Frank Scully. Scully was a writer for a magazine “Variety” and devoted an entire chapter of his book, “BEHIND THE FLYING SAUCERS” (published in 1950 by Henry Holt and Company) to the incident. By his own words, Carr says the Frank Scully story is true. Let us briefly examine Scully’s story.


In 1949 Scully relates that he had learned of a man whom he elcts to call 'Mr Gee'. The name is a pseudonym.

In 1949 Scully relates that he had learned of a man whom he elects to call “Dr.Gee”. The name is a psuedonym the reason for which we shall later learn. Dr.Gee was a government scientist engaged in magnetic research. His credentials consisted of several degrees from higher institutions among which were Armour Institute, University of Berlin, and Creighton University.

Dr.Gee told Scully the story of the first flying saucer to land in the United States. (One had landed in the Sahara Desert before this.) He knew firsthand because he was called upon by the government and assigned to go to the crash site and examine the space craft, together with several other magnetic scientists.

The UFO had been detected by two telescopes , its position determined, and its touch-down site estimated. It was found east of Aztec, New Mexico in a high-plains area which was very rocky.

The scientists decided to observe first and watch for two days. Nothing appeared to happen inside the craft, and the men felt that approach was safe for further investigation. No door was apparent, and the outer skin had no markings. There was, however, a broken porthole. The porthole appeared to be glass, but when the scientists examined it closely, it was different from any other glass known in this country.

The scientists rammed a hole through the defective porthole and looked inside. They counted sixteen bodies. They ranged in height from thirty -six to forty-two inches. As the scientists probed and prodded, they touched a knob which caused the ship’s door to spring open. The little bodies were removed and laid out on the ground. One scientist remarked that their dress was similar to the 1890′s style.

The bodies were perfectly normal, not being midgets. Their skin, however, was charred a dark colour , resembling that of chocolate. The bodies must have been burned, speculated Gee, by air rushing in through the defective porthole or by some other propulsion or pressure malfunction . They were killed by burns or the bends. Dr.Gee said that the point in space at which the little men met their fate had not been determined.

Gee thought the little men probably came from Venus. That was more likely than Mars because inhabitants of Mars would probably be three or four times larger than humans. He said that some of them had been dissected and, except for their size, they appeared to be perfectly normal human beings. Age was judged to be thirty-five to forty years, according to Earth standards. Their teeth were in perfect condition with no cavities or fillings.

Their clothing was dark blue with metal buttons. There were no insignias on the sleeves or caps. Food wafers were found in the ship and given to guinea pigs. The animals seemed to thrive on them. Water was also found, however, it was twice as heavy as normal water. The doctors noted that some water in Norway was similar.

Dr.Gee was not yet through with his astounding revelations. Not only was an alien space ship recovered but, rather, three! There was even a fourth, but that one got away before the scientists could even photograph it. The second space ship which landed in nearly the same condition as the first had its door open. The sixteen little bodies inside were not charred or burned. Medical opinion was that these bodies, when found, had not been dead for much more than two or three hours.

It had landed near a proving ground in Arizona. It was smaller than the first, being only seventy-two feet in diameter. (The first was ninety-nine and 99/100 feet in diameter.) The third ship landed in Paradise Valley above Phoenix, Arizona. There were only two crew members inside. One humanoid was halfway out the door and the other was seated within. Again, both were dead. This ship was thirty-six feet in diameter.

Enter Silas Mason Newton.

Newton was a close associate of Dr.Gee’s (an oil millionaire, according to Robert Carr) who wanted to see the ships. Alas, by this time government secrecy had intervened and Newton was out of luck. Dr.Gee had, however, secured a tubeless radio, some small discs, gears, and other assorted devices which had been taken from the the space ships.

The story now takes on elements of “Reversed Engineering Possibilities”, which clearly predate the Col. Philip Corso’s “Reversed Engineering” claims that captured the imaginations of many Roswellian UFOlogists more than three decades later.

 The ratio of the gears was an enigma to earth engineers, defying more than 150 tests to break down their metal. There was no play in the gears and they did not appear to be lubricated. Dr.Gee constructed an antenna for the radio and was able to receive a sort of high “C” hourly, at fifteen minutes past the hour.

“The Philadelphia Inquirer” newspaper carried an article on page four of its July 28th, 1952 issue describing more details on the Scully story which it received from “True Magazine”. On March 8th, 1950, according to the Inquirer, Newton spoke to an elementary science class at the University of Denver. Half the class apparently believed the story by Newton of Dr.Gee’s discoveries. The story was out!

At one of Newton’s con game appearances on campus, his talk was suddenly cut short by Dr.Gee who excitedly pointed to his wrist warch and bellowed, “Great Scott, we’ve got to get to the airport!” Newton hurriedly gathered his papers and dashed out the door as students and faculity looked on. Some would-be investor in the auditorium asked, “What was that fellows name”, and another person replied,”I think it was Scott something”.

Interestingly, with the advent of the Internet, this and many other UFO crash stories have grown into something of a sub-cultural cottage industry. I discovered that “aztec, nm. ufo crash” produced 128 pages of postings to examine, while Roswell had 644. Carbondale, PA. had a scant 10, as did Spitsbergen, Norway. While Kingman, Arizona was represented by 28 pages to scroll upon. Curiously, Kecksberg, PA displayed just 3 pages even though it had received national exposure on TV’s very popular “Unsolved Mysteries” program. The date of my very cursory internet survey was May 13,2005.


Silas Mason Newton

Interestingly, when Scully’s book was published, all of the principals in chapter twelve seemed to mysteriously drop out of sight. J. P. Cahn of the San Francisco Chronicle on an assignment for True magazine decided to put Newton’s lecture to the test. He found that Scully and Newton were acquainted and were, in fact, friends. Scully admitted that all of his information was second- hand, but he did seem to sincerely believe Newton.

A meeting was set up and the three – Scully, Newton, and Cahn – met at Scully’s home. After what may have been small talk, Newton produced a hankerchief and dumped from it some metal objects. Two of the objects were gears. Two were what appeared to be small metal discs. The gears were not similar, although the discs matched. They were unmarked with the exception of surface scratches.

Before the meeting was over, Newton briefly showed Cahn a photograph of an object which had a resemblance of an umbrella lying on its side. He hinted that people would pay a good deal of money to see something like that. Newton refused to part with the objects he had shown Cahn and further refused to reveal Dr.Gee’s true identity.

Cahn investigated Newton’s background and, as far as he could determine, the whole Newton Oil Company was two small offices connected by a waiting room. Newton had boasted of rediscovering the Rangely oil fields in Colorado. When Cahn researched this misinformation with Richard D. White, Exploration Superintendent for a subsidiary of Standard Oil Company of California, he was told that Newton brought a lot of people out in big cars. With regard to rediscovering Rangely, it was so much baloney.

More background checks found Newton with a record for larceny in New York. The complaint had been discharged. However, in another case, Newton was discovered to have been involved with shady stock practices. Now more determined to get to the bottom of the entire story, Cahn arranged a meeting with Newton and told him that $10,000.00 had been authorized to be put in escrow with another $25,000.00 to be paid upon publication of Newton’s story as soon as reasonable proof was produced. Cahn had, beforehand, counterfeited a disc similar to those Newton had shown to him and was able to make a switch. Newton didn’t know the difference when, after appearing to examine them, Cahn handed them back to Newton.

The discs were reported to have been subjected to 10,000 degrees heat in Dr.Gee’s laboratory without melting. The metal disc kidnapped by Cahn was taken to Stanford University for an analysis. It was plain aluminium , 99.5 percent pure, and the type used in making nothing more than pots and pans. It, incidentally, melted at the Stanford University at 657 degrees Fahrenheit.

Scully finally admitted to Cahn that the mysterious Dr.Gee was none other than Dr. Leo A. Gebauer, with whom he had been in telephone contact a number of times. Not yet completely satisfied, Cahn took a trip to Arizona where he confronted Mr. Gebauer. Cahn discovered that instead of holding the alleged degrees mentioned by Scully, he held only an electrical engineering degree from Louis Institute of Technology in Chicago.

In addition, Cahn found that from 1943 to 1945 when Dr.Gee was supposed to have been heading 1,700 scientists on secret government work (according to Scully in his book) he was actually chief of AiResearch Co. in Phoenix and Los Angeles. His job was to keep the lab machinery going as a kind of maintenance man.

The discrepancies between Scully’s story and Carr’s are numerous and obvious. While Scully says that the Aztec bodies were charred and burnt, Professor Carr implies that they were fairly fresh. Scully clearly says in his book that there were thirty-four little bodies; while Carr recognizes that there was another crashed ship besides the one in Aztec. He says there were only burned remains in the other crash and no entire life forms. Were there thirty-four bodies? Or, were there twelve?

Coral Lorenzen, Aerial Phenomenon Research Organization (APRO) spoke with Sheriff Dan Sullivan of Aztec, New Mexico recently. According to Mrs. Lorenzen, “I personally talked to … Sullivan …and he told me that since the story broke, he’s had deputies out combing the area for any information which would prove or disprove Carr’s claims. His own father was sheriff at the time and had no recollection of a crash, aircraft being in the area, or anything else that would support Carr’s claims”. Nothing has been found.

This writer interviewed several highly reliable “old-timers” from Aztec. Deputy Sheriff Bruce Sullivan, Dan Sullivan’s brother, also works out of Aztec. Bruce Sullivan would have been seventeen or eighteen years old and attending the Aztec High School during this alleged incident. He has lived in Aztec all his life and “Never knew or heard anything about it”.

The deputy said that his department has received many phone calls about the alleged incident but he personally knows nothing about it. His father was sheriff at the time and never mentioned it. If it had happened, he knows that his father would have mentioned it. This may lead to a little confusion as to what sheriffs went out to the craft and examined it with drawn guns.

Lyle McWilliams has been around Aztec for a good number of years. He has been in business, according to his own testimony, “Ever since I’ve been old enough” and was about thirty-two years old in 1948. He recalls nothing of the incident except for the original claim and has always treated it as a joke. He feels that the story may have been revived for “ulterior motives”. Bruce Sullivan and Lyle McWilliams are neither believers nor disbelievers in UFOs.

Marguerite Knowlton has lived near Hart Canyon (the alleged scene of the crash) since 1946 and is sixty years old. Nothing to her knowledge transpired in the canyon. Mrs. Knowlton suggested that I talk with George Brown who owned the Aztec Newspaper in 1948. From my conversation with him, he impressed me as someone who must have been a colourful individual. He recalled a tongue-in-cheek article he had written for the newspaper years ago describing his abduction by little green men from space.

Brown had been in Aztec for seventy years. He ran the paper for forty-four years. “Nobody could have gotten in there and out (Hart Canyon) without attracting a lot of attention. It’s rough country and there’s only one nsrsid16528600 highway in there”. Brown stated emphatically that the road had never been travelled by anyone. He became intoxicated enough with the story to speak with what he estimates to be over one hundred people including cowboys, indeed, lawmen, and ranchers. None of them recalls the UFO landing or subsequent military movement.

If anyone had motive to make good use of the Aztec story, Mr. Brown would head the list. Instead, no sensational accounts of the landing appeared in the paper. Had the story been true, no newsman worth his salt would have passed such an opportunity.

The Robert Spencer Carr story parallels that of a very old, thinly worn, tattered shoe. It has been kicked around for years. Every so often, someone takes this old shoe out of a dark corner in the closet. He dyes it a new colour, waxes and buffs it to a high gloss. New heels and soles are added. Bright new shoestrings once again tie it together. The old shoe becomes a new version to fit the present modern-day style. More useage is gotten from it. It is used until it is worn out. After it has served its purpose, it returns to the closet until someone again decides the time has come for a new version.

While our present-day “throw-away” society probably wouldn’t go through the bother and expense of refurbishing an old pair of shoes, back when Mike wrote this article it was a common, but declining, practice to do so. Nevertheless, the analogy is ” absolutely correct” in regard to the sporatic refurbishing of the Aztec story over the years by Robert Spencer Carr (1973-74), Willian Steinman and Wendelle Stevens(1986), Linda Mouton Howe and Art Bell (1998), and most recently by Stanton Friedman, whom for an additional twenty-five dollars above the cost of his DVD on the case, will personally autograph your copy of it. Of course, there are numerous additional offerings of the story on the ever Wild and Wacky Web.

Those who have seen or talked with Carr must be impressed with his fatherly-like patience. He appears to be a kindly man with a purity of purpose. He would have us believe his motives are no more than to make contact with the superior intelligences fequenting our Earthly air space.

He abhors the “lurid sensationalism – the vulgar sensationalism” that the media has afforded him. Yet, he is lecturing frequently at Florida universities and has appeared, according to his own statistics, on 144 radio shows, 33 television appearances, and 50 newspaper interviews; in addition to a well-attended symposium he recently held in Florida. His new book on UFOs is near completion and is forthcoming. He employs an agent to book his lectures.

Carr’s brainchild is a plan to lure the UFOs to a safe landing place in New Mexico close to Los Alamos. He plans to do this using decoy flying saucers, signal images, and other devices to coax the extraterrestrials to an Earthly visit. He wants presidential initiative aimed at setting up an official meeting with the aliens on a mountain top to find out what they want.

Modern-day UFO coaxers like Dr. Steven Greer’s group also attempt to lure UFOs with light signals and telepathy – while famed abductee Betty Hill had a property ringed with lights to attract UFOs to a landing. Of course, the sci-fi motion picture “Close Encounter of the Third Kind” (1977) featured contact with aliens on a mountain top in the state of Wyoming.

He (Carr) envisions Kissinger sitting at a card table with intergalactic envoys lashing out agreement details. Carr, who is without a doctorate and yet advertises himself as “Dr.Carr” at his symposium, remind me of a space age, one man medicine show peddling his miracle cure-all bottle of elixir with the aid of electronic communication.

Although he claims to be a NICAP investigator, the director tells me that while he may have been in years past, he is now a only a member. A ten dollar bill will purchase annual membership for anyone. At the time I spooke with the director, he told me that a letter was being prepared to Carr warning him to stop the use of NICAP’s name in connection with his “Little Men” story. The director reminded me that Carr’s membership is also revocable and excommunication the next step if deemed necessary.

As one New England* Ufologist aptly put it, “That sounds kinda serious!”

In the final analysis, I may be found to have been too harsh on Carr. Perhaps he subscribes to “the end justifies the means” philosophy which unfortunately requires building a solid house on a foundation of silt and sand. There is a heavy moral here. UFOs are an unknown phenomena. They do exist. Files of investigative organizations are bursting with evidence of UFOs. Reliable witnesses, photographs, physical evidence, burn marks, and landing impressions bear mute testimony to their existance.

Whether they be Klass-type plasmas or Menzolian temperature inversions. Whether they are from an unknown dimension or hallucinations of Jungian minds conjuring round, flattened, illuminated objects projected by the mind’s eye into space. Or, whether they are real, tangible, solid objects controlled by intelligent minds who have developed a mode on galactic travel technologically-advanced that the embryonic Earthly mind of science cannot even begin to conceive of their workings. THE UFO PHENOMENON EXISTS! It is real and apparently does not prefer to go away.

Without qualification, no real “rally ’round the flag” kind of scientific study has ever been mustered. APRO has existed for nearly a quarter of a century; and for that same period, the founders have painstakingly devoted nsrsid16528600 their lives to resolve this enigma. Other organizations have devoted endless hours of esearch – still no answer.

Why no answer? No money! The civilian organizations have attempted to function by means of membership dues and subscriptions. Their entire income is a mere pittance compared to recent funding by the U.S. government to study the antics of frisbees or research butterflies.

At the time of this article’s writing, many UFO groups were attempting to chide and instigate a re-evaluation of the UFO situation by the federal government. The U.S. Air Force’s Project Blue Book (1951-1969) program was believed to be riddled with errors and the Condon Committee’s efforts (1966-1968) were suspected of negative bias, too.

Every government subsidized programme for the research of UFOs has been one with a negative mind to start. The researchers began the study already knowing the answer: “Insufficient Evidence”. Insufficient evidence to continue the study. But the evidence continues to rear its head and cry out, “I am here!”

Young organizations such as UFORIC attempt new studies with new ideas. Good ideas. The result? The necessary scientic minds and the funds with which to complete the work and the project are not there. The point is, the federal government must be the one to initiate the study. But, the committee, if one is ever to exist, must be free and unshackled from political pressures whether Democrat or Republican, Army or Navy.

Of course, there will be those who will remind us of the poverty and starvation which needs to be first resolved; and their ancestors in Spain where finances were made available to Christopher Columbus and the prudish decried the foolish waste of funds to send sailors and ships to their doom at the edge of the flat Earth.

Everyone knew no more continents existed. But the queen possessed two very valuable and perhaps rare conditions of mind, wisdom, and foresight. Would that our leaders would learn from our four hundred year old history lesson.

Mike and I had several discussions concerning funding matters and it was agreed that government funding would probably never be realized without some sort of strings being attached in one way or another. Of course, the raising of privately-donated researh funds using an aggressive internet campaign was completely unimaginable in 1974.

 Interestingly, the FUFOR (Fund for UFO Research) group which had depended on private contibutions for it’s survival, recently made an urgent appeal for contributions to avoid bankruptcy. A portion of the group’s notice appeared in Jim Moseley’s “Saucer Smear” newsletter recently (Vol.52 No.4, May 1,2005). It read, “The dearth of serious interest in UFOs on the part of the public, the press, and the scientific community deepens; as does the financial bind in which the Fund finds itself.

 The long-term, near-total absence of the subject in the major news media cannot help give the impression that either UFOs are no longer being seen or that the mystery of their nature has been solved. Neither conclusion is even close to correct. The stack of genuinely baffling, unexplained cases continues to grow.

The source of major funding have faded away, and so individuals will have to carry a larger part of the load. Barring an unexpected influx of funds, we will soon be on the brink of bankruptcy…(Of course, it might also be a fact that the number of baby-boomer “Nuts and Bolts” enthusiasts are dwindling, while the new age “Abduction Buffs” believe they already know what UFOs are, who’s flying them, and why they’re visiting our planet… So, what’s to fund?)

Robert Spencer Carr’s story, from the first press release to the mass communication interviews, smells of hoax. Mr.Carr may be absolutely sincere in his gospel of the twelve little bodies. Be that as it may, Professor Carr managed to focus national attention on himself and his space elixir, proving a very valuable point.

He has proven that many years of diligent efforts by sincere and dedicated UFO researchers continue to go unnoticed by both the news media and the scientific community in general. On the other hand, a sensational, unfounded, unproven, and undocumented, fabricated new version of an old fairy tale hoax demands attention.

The public, with the unwitting aide of the media, is bilked and exploited. The elusive dignity and serious interest which the subject requires and deserves loses ground to the carnival atmosphere of the latest side-show story. Still, the phenomenon remains and nsrsid16528600 continues to require dignified attention. Perhaps proper attention may be purchased with constant unending pressure on key, high-position, elected representatives beginning with our President.

World Wars, Korea, Viet-Nam, and Middle East Crises will appear and fade. The UFOs patiently remain, quietly going about their unknown business almost as if they are waiting for mankind to say with a united voice, “Who are you? Why are you here?” Because we are man, our very nature insatiably, but respectfully, demands an answer! “We will know why!”

In the 1800′s, William Stanley Jevons wrote, “True science will not deny the existence of things because they cannot be weighed and measured. It will, rather, lead us to believe that the wonders and subtleties of possible existence surpass all that our mortal powers allow us to clearly perceive. We must ignore no existence whatever. We may variously interpret or explain its meaning and origin; but, if a phenomena does exist, it demands some kind of explanation.

Jevons’ (A leading English economist and logician) quote was Mike’s choice of a philosophy to enbrace regarding his investigations of the UFO phenomena. Mike did so for for a number of years as both an APRO and UFORIC field investigator. He left both UFO groups about a year and a half after writing this paper.

Jim Moseley’s Saucer Smear Vol.45, No.5 June 5th, 1998 informs us that, “In 1984 your ‘Smear’ editor, together with two friends, interviewed Carr at his luxurious retirement house in Clearwater, Florida. By that time Carr had quieted down about Azyec, but was claiming that spaceships were frequently landing on the water right in front of his oceanfront home, and that the occupants came inside his home to chat with him.Few people know about this story, as he only told it privately. He asked us not to print it until after his death, and we kept our promise…nsrsid6498786

A nurse who accompanied us at our 1984 Carr interview felt that he was hallucinating because of a specific physical disability. However, the more likely answer came from Carr’s son, who contacted us by mail shorty after his father’s death, in about 1996. In essence, the son said that his father had a lifetime habit of making up stories in order to get attention and to be more interesting. This indeed seems to have been the case.

Regarding, Mike McClellan; he had also assisted me (unofficially) with several investigations of UFO incidents and one crop circle report in 1992. I believe that this article was published in 1975 under the title, “The UFO Crash of 1948 was a Hoax”. Mike McClellan has certainly left us a valuable and persuasive contribution towards a better understanding of how (in UFOlogy) a bad seed planted in 1950 can bear bitter fruit fifty-five years after the root of that plant should have died up and simply blown away.. But, then again, those New Mexican desert plants are a very hearty species, indeed.

*All quotes in this article identified with an asterisk were actually statements uttered by one or more of my multiple personalities, and not by anyone presently residing in Texas or New England. I figure, why the UFO crash experts should be the only ones to have colorful “anonymous informants” at their beck and call.


Godships. Matthew J. Graeber

From Magonia 52, May 1995

Although we might expect to make little headway towards resolving today’s UFO enigma by comparing it to past mysteries, we may, nevertheless, examine both present and past UFO events as being comprised of optically perceived images or imagery that occasionally have an extraordinary effect upon the individual(s) who either observe or come into close proximity with them. Such effects may be emotional, physical, psychophysiological, or psychological in nature; and the mechanisms by which they are produced upon the observers by the UFOs are unknown, as is the composition, origin and intent (if any?) of the Unidentified Flying Objects themselves.

Several ufologists have described the UFO experience as a form of “display” (Jung, Alnor, Evans, Sprinkle, Salisbury, Graeber, et al.). Theoretically speaking, this display may be directed at an individual observer or a particular group of individuals, or it may even have collective significance. The effect of observing a UFO display may be likened to the intrapsychical process involved during the perception of a Rorschach plate (ink blot), with the exception being that the UFO experience is not contemplative and passive. Rather, it is sudden, shocking, and often overwhelming to the observer’s senses.

Primitive man feared, revered or was awestruck by things that came from the sky – probably because he had little or no power over such things as lightning, tornadoes, thunder, whirlwinds, etc., and did not understand what these natural phenomena really were. In fact, many people of ancient cultures even believed that gods and a host of demons also inhabited the skies and that they could swoop down upon them at any moment. So, it is not uncommon to learn of cross-cultural legends and myths about sky people who rustled livestock, abducted humans, mated with earth women, and even switched their offspring for human infants. Today’s UFO abduction reports may be a technologically accented version of this ancient myth;, but, instead of the aliens snatching babies from their cradles, they now surgically remove the unborn foetus from the abductee’s womb. Obviously, today’s social experimentation, unrest, andnear obsession with the abortion issue has activated an unconscious or perhaps instinctual response to the “split-mindedness” of our society concerning this issue. Perhaps that is why the “new age” variety of sky people (i.e. the little grey aliens) are reported to look very similar to a human foetus.

Modern day ufologists, especially those of the hypno-abductionist persuasion, would do well to keep these things in mind as they plumb the depths of the human unconscious for proof of alien interactions with humans. For mythological ideas and beliefs such as the above mentioned are, in fact, the end products of unconscious psychic processes that autonomously appear when there is a great emotional need present. So, simply because UFO abduction stories sound very much alike, we shouldn’t believe that indicates that they are “real experiences”, that is, “real” beyond the realms of the human psyche and its fantastic power and effect upon the individual.

Since we are primarily discussing the optically perceived “display factor” of the UFO encounter, we would probably do well to select a specific UFO configuration to examine for its potential archetypal character and symbolic meaningfulness to modern man. The UFO I have selected for this cursory probe is the gigantic cylindrical craft which are commonly called “motherships” by UFO researchers. I have chosen this particular UFO with the hopes that its size and unusual performance will afford us some insights regarding its origin.

Although motherships have been rarely observed in the last couple of decades, they represent an important facet of the UFO legend’s ongoing development because they were considered by many ufologists to be the vessels that the aliens use to traverse the stars; while the smaller discoidal craft that they carried were thought to be excursion vehicles primarily used to survey the Earth or to collect terrestrial soil, flora and fauna samples. In this case, it is obvious that man’s own space-conquering aspirations and techniques have been directly projected upon an assumed alien technological presence in our environment.

In the early days of UFO activity, these transporters were rather rapidly moving craft and were occasionally involved in the highly publicised airliner pursuit cases of the 1950s and 1960s. But, in more recent times, not only have they slowed down considerably, they also have become rather unstable aerostats frequently said to be observed bobbing, about in the sky because of the buffeting effect of high winds.

The descriptions of these sky-tubes tend to vary a great deal, and there seems to be some confusion amongst the UFO groups regarding how they should be categorised. For some of the great ships are said to be rigid forms (metallic looking) and hollow like a conduit of some sort. These UFOs are usually reported to be silvery or quite dark in colour, while others appear to be translucent or luminous objects that closely resemble a red-hot poker that is occasionally sheathed in a veil of white light or smoke.

Then, of course, there are the “cloud ships” or “cloud cigars”. These are often said to be detected by the witnesses because they move against the prevailing winds and do not tend to dissipate like the regular clouds in which they take refuge. Interestingly, these carriers also display the ability to land, which is an extremely rare occurrence for the other type and, although they appear to lack any sort of metallic structure, they still manage to maintain a particular shape, such as a loaf of French bread or an enormous cigar.

If we search the ancient writings of man and examine a few of his mythological concepts, we will discover that these motherships probably should be called the god ships. (1) For, certainly these carriers are easily associated with Biblical epiphanies of fire and light, pillars of fire, whirlwinds, and other miraculous manifestations such as the great luminous cloud which was said to have led and nourished Moses and his followers during the time of their flight from Egypt.

We might also find interest in the fact that these cylinders as “a symbolic phallic form” compare quite nicely with the ancient worship of the generative power of nature (and God), which was depicted as a phallus. (2) Such religious rites were practised in several ancient cultures (especially in the Orient), and also appeared in the Dionysiac festivals of ancient Greece. (3)

Symbolically speaking, one might say that the god ship is a colossus (pregnant) and is said to launch (give birth to) many zip-zapping smaller craft (spheres or discs; i.e., female symbols) which wildly scoot about the troposphere like sperm cells in search of an egg to fertilise. Even more interestingly (according to the reports), the cylinders tend to assume a provocatively youthful erection attitude when the ejaculation of the smaller craft takes place (roughly 40 to 45 degrees off the horizontal plane); and to further compound their male sexuality, they quite often take on a reddish glow that quickly engulfs the entire interior of the cylinder (as if to suggest that blood was surging through the tube).

Dirigible landing at Mineola, NY, July 1919

As an androgynous (phallic-uterine) symbol, the god ship is then a sort of “dual-singularity”, or, what Jung might have called “a union of opposites”, which has the ability to carry/eject and absorb smaller UFOs. It is at once a sort of visual aid, projected upon the atmosphere, which symbolically explains, according to the level of man’s thinking or belief, that:

  • 1) That God has the power to create and reclaim;
  • 2) That the natural pulse of life (nature) is a cyclic phenomenon eternally replenishing itself;
  • 3) That energy is conserved.

Curiously, the followers of the ancient Hindu faith will tell you that Matha-Vishnu (second person of the Hindu trinity) can, by merely breathing in and out, create or destroy entire spiritual universes, and we know that this thought closely parallels the remark made by a little sylph to Facius Cardan, [4] which asserted that God’s creation was not a singular event but rather an ongoing, from moment to moment, occurrence, and that if God should desist for even a moment, all would end. 

These notions seem to have anticipated quantum theory, just as surely as the phallic forms appeared in the skies long before the 20th century. What’s more, the phallic also influenced the artists of antiquity, for such forms frequently appear in drawings and carvings which were not only intended to symbolise nature but were also believed to invoke the fructifying powers of the gods at the time of planting. The phallic symbol also appears to have had directional meaning (5) and was possibly believed to have had threatening powers over one’s enemies.

Besides being threateningly penetrating, it can also single one out or offer direction to us in the form of a very penetrating dream or dream message. Interestingly, Dr Jung noted that many of his patients encountered this archetypal symbol in their slumber and it was obvious these dreams had very diverse meanings; but, generally, they come through in what he called “big dreams” – that is, dreams of tremendous power and influence. The kind of dream one thinks about a great deal upon awakening, wondering what in the world it might have meant.

One such commentary appeared in Jung’s landmark book on UFOs and I would like to elaborate on it here because it illustrates how the phallic UFO is perceived in the unconscious mind which is, of course, extremely important to any serious study of the UFO enigma; simply because we are not certain how many of these mysterious objects hail from man’s inner space, that is, his unconscious.

Dr Jung’s patient’s dream: 

“I was out walking, at night, in the streets of a city. ‘Interplanetary machines’ appeared in the sky and everyone fled. The machines looked like steel cigars. I did not flee, one of the ‘machines’ spotted me and came straight toward me at the oblique angle. I think Professor Jung says that one should not run away, so I stand still and look at the machine. From the front, seen close to, it looked like a circular eye, half blue, half white.

“A room in a hospital: My two chiefs came in, very worried and asked my sister how it was going. My sister replied that the mere sight of the machine had burnt my whole face. (6) Only then did I realise that they were talking about me, and that my whole head was bandaged, although I could not see it”

I have selected this dream for study for a couple of reasons. First of all, it touches upon the process of selectivity frequently attributed to the phallic symbol and UFOs, and, secondly, because it had the remarkable burning characteristics found in quite a number of UFO cases, in particular, a case on file at UFORIC, (7) which was investigated by Mr Michael McClellan, formerly of APRO.

Mike’s report on that experience starts off with the witness’s (Mrs Flagg’s) letter to him relating her sighting particulars and reads as follows:

“Dear Mr McClellan, Having read an article in the Times News about the UFO sightings in Mahoning Valley that took place – I thought perhaps it might be a good idea to tell you what I have seen Friday A.M. on October 26. I saw something very unusual in the sky. It wasn’t anything like a flying saucer but rather three large silver planes that looked like jets and they sparkled like three large diamonds in the sky. They also had a flickering light that kept blinking at a speed which I have never seen in all my life.

“The three flickering lights kept blinking so fast and each one had a rod attached to it. In other words, from down here, to me, they looked like three wands with a large star at the tip of each rod. The three planes (as I call them) were huddled so close together and I thought for a minute they would crash if they bumped into one another.

“The objects were all lit up and could be seen from all parts of the world. One couldn’t miss them. It seemed to me as if they were being held in the air by magnets. They weren’t moving there. All of a sudden, the UFO in the center made a quick turn just as a fish would swish its tail (8) and headed towards the opposite direction from the others. This scared me, as I thought for a minute it was going to zoom down here at me. I ran in the house so fast that I almost fell, I turned out all the lights and I went for my binoculars but when I looked up into the sky they had disappeared. I have seen other things (other times) with rays or beams of light emanating from them but it would take a book to write all these and furthermore I always kept this to myself because there are people who think one is a nut. But I was always in fear of these UFOs because I found the tips of my dog’s ears all burned as though someone burnt them with a match. I’m just beginning to wonder if the UFOs are doing it?

“Oh yes, on another occasion one came very close to my home when I happened to be looking out of the window, and this thing from the sky kept coming closer and closer. Well, I got inquisitive and watched. All of a sudden it came real close to my window, gave a turn and a beam went out. It was dark and I didn’t see anything more that evening but as the ray of light hit my windows I heard them crack. The next morning I looked at the windows and, sure enough, they were cracked. I have three windows and they are still cracked from that time.”

Psychophysiological aspects of a close encounter

According to Michael McClellan’s investigative report, the witness became quite ill after the incident and she also suffered a cluster of reddish-coloured skin eruptions and some general discolouration on her entire face which was thought to be a direct result of being exposed to the UFO’s ray. The pimple-like cluster (9) was treated medically as was the illness (nausea) and their sudden emergence remains as much a mystery to Mrs Flagg as it does to the UFO investigator. (10) It should be mentioned that Mr McClellan is a reliable and thorough researcher, who stressed that he had no doubt concerning the sincerity and mental stability of the witncss. However, a clue to the origin of the witness’s UFO experience might be found in her rather cryptic references to the UFOs as the “big three” (11) which she thought were about to crash (i.e., clash) together and would be seen by or otherwise involve the whole world. For, the lady was obviously very concerned about mounting international tensions, and had even felt compelled to compose some patriotic music.

Quite interestingly, in cases of this type we must ponder the thought that a distinct psychophysiological process may be affecting the observer. How this occurs remains unclear, but that does not deny the fact that marked physical effects upon the UFO experiencers and close encounters with UFOs (or their operators) do coincide. For evidence such as nausea, temporary paralysis, unusual skin discolourations and bouts of memory loss are quite often the only physical proof that the UFO investigator can point to to show that a genuine UFO experience has occurred.

Such evidence is, of course, well documented in the responsible saucer literature and can be verified by the physician’s records concerning the observers treatment(s) after the event. But, evidence of this kind should not be considered as some sort of proof-positive concerning an extraterrestrial visitation. However, it does offer the researcher an excellent opportunity to study the possible workings of psychophysical processes (12) in relationship to the perception of specific UFO-like imagery or psychic symbols.

Anyway, if we look at the motherships’ performance record in modern times – we find that they first appeared in the skies as “mystery rockets” over Scandinavia just at the close of World War II. Usually these rockets were heard as well as seen. Moreover, when they were witnessed (as objects with and without vapour trails) the reports indicated that they did not seem to zigzag or hover; rather, they coursed steadfastly through the skies much like the dreaded V-2 rockets and flying buzz bombs that the German military had developed.

Needless to say, many people suspected that these “ghost rockets” were actually Russian devices slapped together by some Nazi scientists who must have fallen into Stalin’s hands. So, quite naturally, the Allies (American and British) immediately dispatched military investigators to search for their launch sites, but the effort was in vain because the sightings suddenly dropped off.

So, it wasn’t until the Cold War year of 1952 that the “motherships” really earned their status in UFO legend. For it was there, high above the French towns of Gaillac and Oleron, that the sky cylinders started dishing out little saucers all over the heavens while also spewing large clumps and fine strands of “angel hair” over power lines, trees, buildings and fence posts. This gossamer substance has rather fascinating characteristics of its own; for it is said that it quickly evaporates, especially when touched; and quite naturally, one is immediately reminded of the Biblical accounts concerning the heaven-sent manna; for this, too, had a protective coating with similar dissipating qualities. Moreover, the emission of the angel hair has also occurred over several cities of the United States in the late 1960s and early 1970s and it seems that the smaller disc-like objects can also produce similar effects.

UFO investigators specialising in “angel hair cases” advise that we should not think of this substance as hair lightning – nor are we to entertain the rather ludicrous notion that high-flying (wind borne) spiders were responsible for the strands as was asserted by several non-believers in the press. But, on the other hand, one must say that this sperm of the gods appears to be just as elusive as the chariots they drive. For, to date, no one has produced a sampling of either for scientific analysis.

Of course, any discussion of the “motherships” would be terribly incomplete without mention of the “great airship flap” that swept the USA just before the turn of the century (1895-97). Apparently, these “antique UFOs” also emitted bright light beams and were piloted by both normal-sized human-like entities and a smaller variety which are often called humanoids. Many saucer experts tend to lay a great deal of emphasis on these sightings; (13) and, although it seems perfectly obvious that such airships were almost exactly like the anticipated method of conquering the sky during the era some saucer enthusiasts tend to see them as a sort of alien introductory model.

The implication is, of course, that the extraterrestrials are so intelligent and considerate that they were conditioning us earthlings to their presence by promoting the shape of things to come. The problem with this line of thought is, quite naturally, that the aliens failed to anticipate that airships were not to be this planet’s sky kings in spite of their superior technology and intellect. In short, the ufonauts and most earthlings of that time period suffered from a very serious kind of techno-myopia and it was only a few far-sighted fellows like the Wright Brothers who were soon to develop and launch the better idea.

Ironically, if we search the 1890s airship flap data we will discover only one reported UFO configuration vaguely resembling a contemporary aircraft or an early glider-like contraption, even though much glider experimentation was occurring in the United States and Europe during that period.

Obviously, the human expectations of the times regarding manned flight involved the lighter-than-air airship simply because most people, including the lead-ing writers and scientists of that era, tended to believe that anything heavier than air could not possibly fly. Apparently, this ancient desire to see the phallic airship in the skies was pushed well into the 20th century and even finds some very serious proponents today. (14)

One is compelled to think that it is not that the airplane isn’t a truly marvellous invention, for it most certainly is, but there is something awesome and captivating about the mere sight of great airships just as there is something truly unique about the sensation of soaring in a glider.

Dare we suggest that it feels more like the man himself is flying – rather than riding in an engine-powered machine which is being thrust about the sky. Moreover, can we seriously entertain the thought that this “soaring feeling” satisfies one at a much deeper level, possibly a level which we have somehow lost touch with, but still yearn to experience?

For we know that man’s ancient fascination with flight and his dreams of flying under his own power has not been entirely lost to today’s technological advancements; for even in this age of supersonics and space shuttles we still find individuals gleefully leaping off the edges of cliffs while dangling on the flimsy wings of gliders; and more recently, there comes the news of the successes of a few diehards who have finally realised Leonardo’s dream of true man-powered flight.

One is compelled to think how wonderful this age truly is; the radio has fulfilled one of man’s oldest dreams (to send his voice across great distances); TV expands this dream come true and even allows him to see those distant places; while the telephone adds selectivity and privacy to the process. So, too, remarkable flying machines have shrunk the globe to a point where no place is very far away any more.

In addition to all of this, human organs are being transplanted, life spans prolonged, and several men have even walked upon the face of the moon. But, despite all these miracles and man-made wonders, we still wish to somehow escape this tiny planet with all its dreadful problems. On the conscious level, we seek tropical vacations to relieve the chilling effects of the stress loads we accumulate. Unconsciously, the “escape wish” takes on the fantasy of a flight from the oppressive weight of reality – and escape from the planet itself becomes desirable.

If the “escape/flight wish” should emerge in its “all-too-human form”, that is, as an archetypal symbol catapulted through the unconscious, the instincts and emotions, then man, the flyer (the phallic UFO), and not his contemporary aircraft would be the vision men see in the skies.

For the phallic UFO, which is the aerial extension of man’s inner being on the wing is what we mistakenly call the mother-ship. It is a primitive symbol in the technological guise of the times. This is as obvious a statement as that which is boldly proclaimed by the extended wheels which dart from between the legs of the motorcycle gang member, for his machine ‘comes off’ as being as much of an extension of his manhood as does the image he tries to project with his garb, body language and speech.

We also recognise that more sophisticated individuals express their manhood with far more socially acceptable symbols, such as the long hoods of expensive limousines and shiny sports cars. Yet, we fail to see that the phallic UFO is man, the dream flyer.

Undoubtedly, the sky cylinders are meaningful, for in ancient times they were thought of as gods. But we cannot prove that they mean exactly the same thing to men today. All we might cautiously consider about them is that this type of recurrently reported object may indicate that an archetypal symbol of cyclical, selective penetrating, threatening and/or directional potentiality is evident. (15) If we wanted to find a more familiar concept which touches on these potentialities, perhaps some of the characteristics attributed to the current Christian idea of God as the Third Person of the Trinity (the Holy Ghost) would fit quite well – especially since the Holy Ghost is said to be the conduit between heaven and Earth (or God and Man) and the method by which God implants His seed on Earth too. Something quite similar to the Roman god of healing, Mercury, or the Greeks’ messenger of the gods, Hermes.

We as people of this secular age fail to recognise this because we are not as tuned in to the archaic modes of mythological thought as our ancestors were. I think it would be reasonable to say that an ancient man of moderate intelligence and educational background would have had little or no difficulty in the assimilation of this type of vision, for visions of this sort were prayed for and fully anticipated in their times.

What’s more, if our minds were so conditioned through a kind of mental reverie built up over generations of relative unchange, as were our ancestors’, then the modern day visions would be read without much difficulty too. But today’s man is living in a time of tremendous uncertainty and fear caused by volatile social transition, mounting political, economic and intellectual turbulence, along with fantastic technological advancement. Indeed, in a generally “non-spiritual” but, nevertheless, so-called “enlightened age” when even the most brilliant of theologians tend to ignore and/or completely fail to interpret the signs that men are seeing in the skies.

To summarise, the god-ship UFO (a specific archetypal symbol) is reported to be the carrier, ejector and retriever of smaller UFOs. As if to suggest that, on the one hand, a complex nucleus is expelling some of its components (packets of power) or on the other, is absorbing additional energy.

Our search of the reports gathered and investigated by UFORIC probers and that of “the good UFO literature” indicates that, generally speaking, many smaller objects are expelled or disbursed; but only one or two seem to be recovered, if any at all. This may be an important psychodynamic display, for it illustrates that the energy levels are being spent, reduced, or divided as we have proposed by describing the Dynamic Display as psychically therapeutic.

The UFO sightings and the elation factor

UFOs perform all sorts of marvellously preposterous feats – they wobble, spin, glide, and flit about at blurring speeds. They perform bug-like aerobatics, hover, blink off, blink on, and then completely vanish before one’s eyes. They apparently do not behave in a logical manner while operating; but yet, they manage to elude capture, overt contact attempts and our most sophisticated aircraft.

Through a marvellous mixture of sensory stimulation and emotional responsiveness, they tend to excite and delight us because they routinely overcome the obviously threatening, and make a mockery of statistical probability. In short, they either beat or cheat the odds each and every time.

They are, quite simply, a joy to behold and provoke very powerful emotions in their observers; for, not only are they consciously perceived, but they are also “unconsciously recognised” as the observer’s fears problems on display. Most importantly, these problems (as symbols) are shown to be overcome, split up, or reduced in power, perhaps this is why some adult UFO witnesses proclaim that ‘their’ UFO sighting somehow changed their lives – although they haven’t the foggiest idea why they feel that way about it, while, on the other hand, some youthful witnesses often say that their sightings seemed too much like a fantasy (which is, of course, a process of active imagination that has not yet been educated out of them or lost to the advancement of the ageing process); and they, too, would really like to know exactly what they did observe.

Artist's impression of a 'mothership' launching UFOs

And finally…

This cursory probe into the probable meaning behind the observation of the cylindrical type of UFO still falls far short of what is required, for it has only touched upon that fact that the symbol, whatever it finally represents in consciousness, is only one side of its potentiality, for all psychical symbols are two-sided and extraordinarily multi-faceted.

However, the symbol is not ‘complete’ at its source; in fact it is not an image at all, but rather only the potential of one that develops, much like a photo negative as it moves into the light of consciousness. And it is in consciousness that a person’s need to find some relief, a saviour or mentor – or conversely their fears of meeting with the very devils that are tormenting them – may become affixed to any kind of strange occurrence like rumours about the appearance of UFOs in the sky. It is because of this all-too-human factor that UFOs become endowed with all sorts of awesome, miraculous and magical powers.

Perhaps we have discovered enough about the mythical, sexual, and marked psychic background of the god-ships to determine that their origin is most likely the human unconscious, and not some alien planet situated at the edge of the cosmos. For it seems highly unlikely that a visiting alien intelligence would be so human-like as to possess similar intrapsychical processes regarding the development of their technology, their exploratory aspirations, and their myth-making tendencies.

It also appears that, while we may have been actively seeking a better understanding of some aspect of the UFO phenomenon’s interaction with humankind while examining the god ship legend, we probably have uncovered a great deal more about humankind’s projection upon the rumours of UFOs appearing in our skies.

This type of human interaction with the UFOs is ‘a reality’ – whether or not UFOs (i.e., extraterrestrial space craft) actually exist and are visiting our planet.



  1. Dr Carl C. Jung Informs us that the Berliners call the motherships “Holy Ghosts”, while the Swiss military have managed to came up with a much more earthy description for the spherical objects they emit.
  2. Early Christian carvings often portrayed the Trinity as a thrice-phallus.
  3. The phallus is still an object of veneration in some areas of Japan.\
  4. Faaius Cardan – father of mathematics and philosopher, Pierre Cardan, as reported by Dr Jacques Willis in his book on UFOs, Passport to Magonia.
  5. In ancient Greece, a stone herm (or psycho-pomp) was often placed at crossroads symbolising the god’s role as a mediator between the spiritual and physical worlds.
  6. UFO light beam and propulsion emissions are often said to produce burning effects upon the faces, hands and arms of the observers. In some cases, the skin appears as if sunburned – while in other instances the skin just feels hot to the observer and no siscolouration is apparent.
  7. The UFO Report and Information Center of Philadelphia founded by the author and his wife (operational from 1972 to 1980)
  8. A commonly reported characteristic of UFO flight behaviour.
  9. This may be similar to the ring of skin eruptions that formed in the general area of Barney Hill’s groin after he and his wife, Betty, had a close encounter with a UFO in 1981.
  10. Mrs Fiagg’s physician thought she had the Hong Kong flu, but Mrs Flagg dismissed his diagnosis entirely.
  11. The big three could be the USA, USSR and Red China.
  12. The author is currently probing this aspect of UFO experiences.
  13. There is a popular trend in ufological thought which embraces the notion that the UFO operators have had an active influence on the advancement of human spiritual and/or technological development.
  14. The Piasecki Aircraft Company of Philadelphia was developing a helistat for forestry use by the Department of the Navy in the mid-1970s. It consisted of a central gas bag and four modifiedhelicopters for load lift and propulsion. The project was scrapped when the test vehicle crashed and its pilots were killed.
  15. Dr Sigmund Freud effectively demonstrated that any pointed object appearing in a dream may take on phallic significance. But it was Dr Carl C. Jung who first noted that the phallic symbol had significance beyond the sexual.


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