Report To Congress
In June 1960, after examining the accumulated evidence for UFOs, NICAP concluded not only that UFOs are real, and, by majority opinion, probably interplanetary, but also that there are certain potential dangers linked with the secretive Air Force policy. These ideas were embodied in a report to Congress. A digest of the reports follows. (A confidential section, "How Krushchev Could Exploit the UFO Situation,” has been deleted for obvious reasons. Otherwise, the following quotes are substantially the text of the report as it was sent to Congress.
DANGERS OF SECRECY ON UFOs (UNIDENTIFIED FLYING OBJECTS) AND DIGEST OF DOCUMENTED EVIDENCE
Early in 1960, because of the growing hazard from Air Force UFO secrecy, Congressional hearings were urged by the majority of NICAP Board Members and technical advisors.
There is a serious and growing danger that UFOs may be mistaken for Soviet missiles or jets, accidently setting off war. Several Air defense scrambles and alerts already have occurred when defense radar-men mistook UFO formations for possible enemy machines. NICAP agrees with the sober warnings by General L. M. Chassin, recent NATO Coordinator of Allied Air Services (to recognize UFOs before a case of mistaken identity causes a global tragedy *).
By AF policy, members of Congress and committee chairmen have repeatedly been told that the UFOs are non-existent, and that hearings would benefit only the sensation-seekers and science-fiction publishers. The following evidence is submitted to interested members of Congress, as proof of the need for immediate emergency action.
* See Appendix A, Congressional Record entry, for text of General Chassin's statement.
There is an increasing danger--as the NICAP Board has warned the AF--that Russia could exploit the muddled UFO situation at any time. If successful, this trick would greatly increase tension in the United States and allied countries. It could be planned to upset the 1960 campaigns, * or at any desired time to increase fear of USSR attack power.
DIGEST OF UFO EVIDENCE
(Documents, tape-recordings, and transcripts in NICAP possession)
The documented cases briefed below are examples of the hundreds concealed, denied, or falsely explained by the AF.
1. Kinross case, November 23, 1953. Disappearance of an F-89 jet from Kinross Air Force Base during a UFO chase. Pilot Lieutenant Felix Moncla; radar officer, Lieutenant R. R. Wilson. No trace of jet or airmen found. AF statement to Associated Press: The plane was followed by radar until it merged with an object 70 miles off Keweenaw Point in Upper Michigan. Letters to NICAP by Moncla's mother, brother-in-law, cite conflicting AF explanations given them and show disbelief in AF answers. Loss of jet, airmen confirmed to NICAP by Captain R. C. White, AF Press Desk. (Listed as probable crash, cause unknown.)
The AF now denies this case ever occurred. Denial signed by Major L. J. Tacker, AF PIO (Public Information Officer) on UFOs, in statement to NICAP member Richard Levine. Intelligence officers connected with the UFO Project Blue Book at ATIC (Aerospace Technical Intelligence Center) at Dayton, Ohio, also denied knowing of the case; this denial took place in an interview with Richard Vaughan, staff member WTTG, Washington television station, and NICAP member Harold E. Salkin, on May 31, 1960. (Tape and transcript of interview, Tacker and Moncla family letters, photostat of AP story all available.)
2. Airliner-UFO chase by AF order. On April 8, 1956, Captain Raymond L. Ryan, American Airlines, encountered fast-maneuvering UFO west of Albany, New York. Radioed Griffiss AFB, was ordered to abandon next landing, pursue UFO, aid jets in interception. (Against Civil Aeronautics Board policy.) In investigations by CAB and CAA ( now Federal
* Congressmen Edgar W. Hiestand, California, took cognizance of this fact during the 1960 campaigns, wrote to the Secretary of the Air Force urging a policy of "Complete frankness about UFOs.
Aviation Agency) Captain Ryan and American Airlines--evidently under orders--denied any deviation to chase the UFO, cited flight-log entry as proof of normal flight time Albany-Syracuse. NICAP request for AF report evaded.
Proof of AF-ordered chase, with possible danger to passengers, also indicating false or altered flight-log entry: A previously tape-recorded interview with Captain Ryan and his first officer, William Neff, with both admitting the AF order, describing the chase to Lake Ontario, where UFO speeded up, heading for Canada. CAA tower operators at Albany, Watertown, and one AF witness in Albany airport tower, said by Ryan to have observed UFO also. (Tape, transcript, Ryan and AF denials, CAA and CAB reports to NICAP confirming Ryan denials, available, with proof that tape is genuine.)
3. Report of AF transport captain indicating possible UFO attack. During 1958 night flight over Pacific, AF transport radar-man picked up nearby UFO. Strange flashes or explosions followed, like anti-aircraft bursts but blue-green in color. Transport captain fired a challenge rocket. A red flare, other blue-green bursts followed, but no damage to plane. AF captain later told Intelligence he believed they were "shot at." Intelligence report summary stated: Entire crew were aware of the previous disappearances of AF transports in this area, and all appeared to believe their experience was related to the previous disappearances. Extract from unclassified summary sent to NICAP by a member serving in AF Intelligence. Original or certified photocopy available.)
On May 31, 1960, ATIC officers denied any such report, in conference previously cited. (See Kinross case.) Documented denial available.
(Other documented cases listed on following pages.)
AIR FORCE DENIALS OF SECRECY DISPROVED
Since the AF investigation began, UFO censorship has been constantly denied in AF press releases, broadcasts, letters to Congress, press, and the public. Examples follow:
1. Assistant AF Secretary R. E. Horner, CBS nationwide telecast (Armstrong Circle Theater) January 22, 1958: "There has been a mistaken belief that the AF has been hiding from the public information concerning unidentified flying objects. Nothing could be further from the truth. And I do not qualify this in any way. "
AF admission 24 hours later, in official letter by Captain
G. H. Oldenburgh, AF PIO at Langley AFB: "The public dissemination of data on unidentified flying objects is contrary to AF policy and regulations, specifically AF Regulation 200-2" (Letter to NICAP member Larry W. Bryant; available for inspection. )
2. General Joe W. Kelly, USAF, Director of Legislative Liaison, to Senator Francis Case, Congressman Lee Metcalf, other Congressmen, and private citizens: Denials that UFO reports were withheld from the public.
Signed statement to NICAP by Acting Commandant of Coast Guard, Rear Admiral J. A. Hirshfield, after NICAP request for a visual-and-radar UFO report from the Coast Guard Cutter SEBAGO: This official report, said Admiral Hirshfield,, had been forwarded to the "designated agency" in the Department of Defense. He added: "Federal law prohibits the release of official files concerning such cases to other than specified channels. I therefore find it necessary to refuse your request." (The SEBAGO case involved high-speed UFO maneuvers about the cutter. The AF later publicly implied the officers and radar-men were incompetent.)
(Other documentary proof of secrecy available)
EXPLAINING AWAY OF UFO REPORTS
In 1956, Captain Edward J. Ruppelt, former chief of Project Blue Book, publicly disclosed the AF policy of debunking UFO reports:
"I was continually told to tell them about the sighting reports we've solved--don't mention the unknowns'... After the AF order of February 11, 1949, everything was evaluated on the premise that UFOs couldn't exist. No matter what you see or hear, don't believe it.... There have been definite indications that there is a movement afoot to get Project Blue Book to swing back to the old project philosophy of analyzing UFO reports--to write them all off, regardless.... Some good reports have come in and the AF is sitting on them.... Some investigators were 'purged' because they had refused to change their original opinions about UFOs. ... There were two factions. One believed the spaceship answer but felt we should clamp down on all information until we had all the answers. Another group favored giving more facts to the public, including the best cases, the unsolved movies of UFOs, and the AF conclusions. A press showing of the Tremonton UFO movie--which the Navy analysts said showed unknown objects under
intelligent control--was planned early in '53. ...A new publicity policy went into effect--don't say anything." (From; The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects, Doubleday, 1956.)
TYPICAL CASES " WRITTEN OFF" BY AF POLICY
1. Washington UFO operations over White House, Capitol, Washington Airport, July 1952; tracked by CAA and AF radar-men, speeds from 140 to 7,200 miles per hour; objects seen by CAA tower men, pilots, exactly where radar indicated. In 1959, Senator Keating of New York was told by AF Headquarters that weather phenomena had caused the radar blips; no mention of the visual sightings. In the May 31, 1960 ATIC conference, officers first denied any visual reports, then admitted them. (Record available.)
Captain Ruppelt statement: "In 1952 the press was led to believe the Washington radar-visual sightings were only weather phenomena. Actually, they're still unknowns. The press conference did take the pressure off Project Blue Book, but behind the scenes it was only the signal for an all-out drive to find out more about the UFOs."
2. Oxnard case. Maneuvering UFO seen over Oxnard AFB, California, and nearby areas, by AF personnel, police, sheriff's deputies. Report to NICAP by CAA tower operator detailed CAA radar tracking, by four operators, of UFOs at 3,600 miles per hour, one directly over Oxnard AFB. AF denied radar tracking, stated UFO probably a weather balloon. (CAA report certified by Admiral Knowles, six Board members, available.)
3. Nike case. Brief landing, take-off of UFO near Nike base, Derwood, Maryland, reported by Army missile men. First AF public answer: Light from torches of welders on transmission-line tower. (Major William Lookadoo, PIO, Boiling AFB.) Canceled when Potomac Electric Power Company official told NICAP no welders in area. New answer: Floodlight on farmer's barn, given Newsweek, also NICAP by Major Tacker, AF UFO spokesman. Letter available.) NICAP investigators searched area; only structure near UFO "touch-down" spot not even wired for electricity.
4. Report by AF Colonel D. J. Blakeslee, then a wing commander, of high-speed UFO outmaneuvering his F-84 jet in two chases in the Far East. UFO, described as having rotating lights, also tracked by AF ground radar.
Intelligence Report summary: "Definitely in family of
UFO.“ (Also sighted by other AF plane crews.) January 1953 ATIC conclusion: Unknown object. September 1953 answer given Look Magazine: Wing commander misled by twinkling of planet Jupiter. How AF radar, range 200-300 miles, tracked Jupiter in high-speed evasion of F-84 not explained. On May 31, 1960, ATIC admitted Colonel Blakeslee sighting never solved. (Documents proving contradictory claims available.)
5. AF jet chase of UFO, Redmond, Oregon. Radar tracking denied object called "probably a balloon" in spite of FAA logged reports of high-speed UFO. *
Other documented cases, photographic evidence, and military orders silencing witnesses will be cited in explaining a possible Soviet trick. Because of the massed evidence, 25 percent of the public (by national polls) reject AF denials and answers. Some suspect a disturbing reason for secrecy--that the UFOs are either Russian or hostile space machines. Since 1947, scores of magazine and newspaper articles have discussed the Soviet secret weapon theory--some have warned it is the true answer. Factual records, going back to World War II, prove it false, but most citizens in the United States and allied countries are not aware of these facts.
HOW KHRUSHCHEV COULD EXPLOIT THE UFO SITUATION (This section--confidential to members of Congress—is omitted here.)
PLAN TO REDUCE THE DANGER
By prompt action, the danger (of Soviet exploitation) can be greatly reduced. Following the majority vote, NICAP herewith offers its documented evidence, proving the UFOs could not be of Soviet origin, as a stopgap until the USAF releases its hidden proof. Selected NICAP evidence to be placed on public record would include:
1. The majority conclusion that the UFOs reported by competent observers are interplanetary machines far superior to any earth-made devices. (NICAP would stress its verified, factual evidence, as opposed to the wild stories, frauds, and delusions unfortunately publicized.)
2. Massive documented evidence confirming UFO reality, their tremendous speeds, intricate maneuvers, unique shapes and proof that they are not earth-made.
* Editorial note: Details of Redmond case reported in Chapter 1, Part I.
Typical unsolved cases:
a. Official White Sands report, visual sighting and theodolite tracking of UFO; calculated speed, 18,000 m. p. h. Certified by Captain R. B. McLaughlin, Navy Missile expert.
b. Official AF report of giant UFO tracked on B-29 radar at over 9,000 m. p. h., and three groups of smaller units (also seen streaking by the bomber) one of which merged with the smaller machine, which operated in the manner of a mother-ship. Report declassified 1958, confirm-to Look researcher later, with ATIC conclusion.-Unsolved.
c. Official AF report of eight-UFO formation seen below PAA airliner by Captain W. B. Nash and co-pilot. Speeds calculated in excess of 4,000 m. p. h. Sharp turns beyond capability of any known craft or missile.
d. Official AF report of double-decked "spaceship" encountered on airway by Eastern Airlines Captain C. S. Chiles, co-pilot J. P. Whitted. Confirmed also by AF observer at Robbins AFB. Power exhaust-blast of. UFO rocked the airliner as unknown machine veered to avoid collision.
Other verified reports of revolutionary-type craft encountered by armed forces and airline captains, weather bureau observers, tower operators, etc. Names, dates, details on record.
Photographs confirmed by Captain E. J. Ruppelt, former Project Blue Book chief:
a. Moving pictures of UFOs at White Sands, New Mexico, April 27, 1950 and May 29, 1950. Taken by Askania cine-theodolites for tracking missiles.
b. AF gun-camera pictures of UFO near Wright-Patterst. AFB, Ohio.
c. Moving-pictures of UFO formation, disc-shaped objects seen visually near Tremonton, Utah. Filmed during high-speed maneuvers by Navy aviation photographer. Navy analysis confirmed by Captain Ruppelt: Unknown objects under intelligent control; could not be aircraft or balloons or birds; excessive speeds indicated. UFOs in three groups; each appeared to rotate about an axis.
Evidence of electro-magnetic forces created by UFOs, from unknown type of propulsion. Cases on record showing interference with electrical ignition, radio, television.
Statement by Hermann Oberth on probable artificial gravity fields involved. Evidence of radiation involved: Case in Geauga County, Ohio, November 1957; ground checked with Geiger counters by Civil Defense Director Kenneth Locke, found highly radioactive after brief landing by UFO. Confirmation of UFO radiation reports by Captain Ruppelt.
3. Reasons why UFOs could not be Russian machines, in addition to proof of superior performance. Records showing UFOs officially reported in World War II, when Russia's best aerial machines were propeller-driven aircraft. Official AF reports:
a. Captain Alvah Reida, B-29 bomber pilot, encounter with high-speed, oval-shaped machine in Far East; outmaneuvered B-29 during Captain Reida's attempts at evasion. Captain Reida's conclusion: Interplanetary.
b. Captain Jack Puckett, Army Air Corps, 1946, encounter with high-speed, rocket-shaped craft (similar to Captain Chiles' report) while piloting C-47 over Florida. Witnessed by co-pilot, engineer.
c. Major William D. Leet, 1944, encounter while piloting AAF bomber over Europe; mysterious disc device unlike any known craft.
(Similarly, the United States had no such devices in 1944-45, nor does it possess such machines now. If it did, we would be superior to USSR both in space and global operations. We would not be spending large sums to investigate UFOs ($10,000 per major case, as stated by Lieutenant Colonel Spencer Whedon, ATIC, November 1957) plus high costs of jet chases, etc. Nor would we be firing on United States-owned objects. This point should be stressed to end any complacent belief that we are holding back some superior, secret weapon.)
NICAP urges that the Congress insist:
Top AF officers and headquarters spokesmen have repeatedly denied it, in letters to Congress and the public. NICAP is prepared to produce a signed statement by Major Dewey Fournet, USAFR, former Intelligence monitor for the UFO program that the document referred to was drawn up and was kept secret.)
It is realized that some public uneasiness might follow an official AF admission. But NICAP's research indicates there would be no widespread hysteria at the interplanetary answer, unless the AF created suspicion by withholding some of its, evidence. It is true some cases might appear to indicate hostility: The Kinross case; the death of Captain Mantell in a UFO chase; near-collisions on airways, when airline pilots unavoidably injured passengers in evading unknown objects, etc. But evaluation of thousands of reports gives no proof of belligerence. If the AF releases its evidence now, without waiting for a possibly Soviet-inspired emergency, the public probably will accept a frank statement that censorship was invoked in the public interest until more answers were known.
For the majority: /s/ Donald E. Keyhoe
Major, USMC (Retired) Director of NICAP
(Major Keyhoe is an Annapolis graduate; served as a Marine Corps pilot, aide to Colonel Charles Lindbergh; chief of information, Civil Aeronautics; World War II Naval Aviation Training; writer on Soviet espionage, aviation, other subjects, in national magazines.)