Monday, 17 August 2009

MoD Fourth Release of UFO Files (Rendlesham Documents)

The fourth release of the formerly classified MoD's UFO files is upon us and yet again the media-embargo has been ignored and this time it was the UK's “Morning Star” which initially broke the embargo but untrustworthy media aside then this could prove to be one of the more interesting releases:



An excerpt from The Morning Star article follows:

Attempted abductions, scrambled fighter jets and flying saucers over Glastonbury are among hundreds of dramatic reports of extraterrestrial encounters released by the Ministry of Defence. Some 800 sightings dating from 1981 to 1996 have been released by the MoD and the National Archives, including reports of aliens with lemon-shaped heads and laser beams being shot to earth. They were released as part of a three-year joint project aimed at opening up the records to a worldwide audience.

This fourth instalment consists of 14 files of sightings, letters and parliamentary questions, amounting to 4,000 pages in total. The records feature papers relating to the Rendlesham Forest sightings of December 1980, when a number of people claimed to have seen a UFO in Suffolk.”

Source: The Morning Star



Several other articles have been posted about the imminent release with perhaps the most revealing being by Associated Press who details several points of note which I assume accompanied the ‘press package' which in the past has been wrote by Dr. David Clarke (whom I also suspect prepared the briefing for this, the fourth release):



British government posts 4,000 pages documenting 800 UFO encounters

LONDON (AP) - The deputy commander of a U.S. Air Force base in England was baffled by what he'd seen: bright, pulsing lights in the night sky…..Britain's defense ministry couldn't explain it either, but concluded that the unidentified flying object posed no threat.

The National Archives on Monday released the government's complete file on the "Rendlesham Forest Incident" of December 1980, one of Britain's most famous UFO sightings…..It was among more than 4,000 pages posted online Monday documenting 800 alleged encounters during the 1980s and 1990s. Over the past three years the Ministry of Defense has been gradually releasing previously secret UFO papers after facing Freedom of Information demands. The Rendlesham file contains U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Charles Halt's first-hand account of the event, which has been public knowledge for many years. The file includes the conclusions of a British government investigation and a letter from a former defense chief urging officials to take UFOs more seriously. Halt reported that two servicemen had noticed "unusual lights" about 3 a.m. in the woods outside the gates of RAF Woodbridge, a U.S. base in eastern England. He wrote that patrolmen sent to investigate saw "a strange glowing object" in the forest.

The metallic, triangular object "illuminated the entire forest with a white light," he wrote.

The next day, investigators found depressions in the ground and unusual radiation readings. That night many personnel - including Halt himself - saw a pulsing "red sun-like light" in the trees that broke into five white objects and disappeared. The Ministry of Defense could offer no definitive explanation for what the Air Force officers had reported seeing, but also found no evidence of "any threat to the defense of the United Kingdom." Nothing had registered on radar, and "there was no evidence of anything having intruded into U.K. airspace and landed near RAF Woodbridge." A 1983 letter in the file proposes a possible explanation involving a combination of the nearby Orford Ness lighthouse, a fireball and bright stars.

Case closed, as far as the ministry was concerned.

But not everyone was convinced.

A 1985 letter from Lord Hill-Norton, former head of Britain's armed forces, to then-Defense Secretary Michael Heseltine, complained that the "puzzling and disquieting" episode had never been explained properly. Hill-Norton said if the sighting was genuine, "British airspace and territory are vulnerable to unwarranted intrusion to a disturbing degree." The alternative explanation was that "a sizable number of USAF personnel at an important base in British territory are capable of serious misperception, the consequences of which might be grave in military terms."

Britain's defense ministry has charted UFO sightings since the 1950s, when a Flying Saucer Working Party was established. More files are due to be released by the archives through 2010.

Some of the newly released events came with easy explanations…..In 1993 and 1994, the ministry received numerous reports of a "brightly illuminated oval object" over London. It turned out to be an airship advertising a new car.

More mysterious was a UFO "attack" on a cemetery in Widnes, northwest England, in July 1996. A police report said a young man - "a sensible sort of lad and genuine" - reported seeing a UFO firing beams of light into the ground. A police officer sent to the scene found a smoldering railway sleeper. "It does look rather odd," reported the officer, whose name was blacked out in the document.

The files include a little grist for conspiracy theorists.

The head of the ministry's UFO desk wrote briefing notes in 1993 reporting a spate of sightings in southwest England and speculating whether they might be connected to Aurora, a secret U.S. spy plane whose existence has never been officially admitted….. Atop one of his letters, someone scrawled: "Thank you. I suggest you now drop this subject."

The files reveal a 1996 spike in UFO sightings: 609 that year, up from 117 the year before. David Clarke, a UFO historian and consultant to the National Archives, said it was probably no coincidence that the supernatural TV show "The X Files" was popular in Britain at the time, and that alien-invasion movie "Independence Day" came out the same year.

"It's evident there is some connection between newspaper stories, TV programs and films about alien visitors, and the numbers of UFO sightings…..Aside from 1996, one of the busiest years for UFO sightings reported to the MoD (Ministry of Defense) over the past half century was 1978 - the year 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind' was released."

Source: Associated Press



The timing of the release of all of the Rendlesham-related documents coincides nicely with the 30th anniversary of the event which is next year (2010) and while mentioning the Rendlesham Forest UFO case then I feel obliged to also highlight the plight of one of original witnesses as he attempts to finally sort the wheat from the chaff, and (hopefully!!) present the facts of the event before they become forever obfuscated by the passage of time.

I'm talking about TSgt. John Burroughs and he has a new Blog called, “Back To Bentwaters” and here's an excerpt from his first post which was only made on the 23 rd June (2009):



My name is TSgt. John Burroughs. In December 1980 I was a first hand witness to the strange events that took place in Rendlesham forest out side the Bentwaters RAF base where I was stationed. It is my intention to put together a 30 year reunion next year at RAF Bentwaters for all of the witnesses involved in the incident.

I am looking for anybody involved in the incident who would like to come over to England or go on tape to talk about their experience during those events…..Currently we are seeking a sponsor who would like to help put this together. We would welcome any help in getting to the bottom of this 30 year mystery.”

Source: Back To Bentwaters



Unfortunately at the time of writing it seems as if no attempts have been made by the other military personnel involved with the original event to help or even get back in touch with TSgt. John Burroughs…..

Anyway, as always, the new files as always are available at:

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/ufos/



And previous post on the earlier releases:

1 comment:

ekstertera said...

My blog about the phenomena UFO in international language (Esperanto):

http://fenomenonifo.wordpress.com/

Ĝis.