Monday, July 29, 1968
      House of Representatives,
Committee on Science And Astronautics
          Washington, D.C.

Mr. Roush continues:

Although we have reserved the latter part of the afternoon for our roundtable discussion, the Chair is well aware the Members of Congress, because of other duties, may not find it possible to be here during that time.

If any of my colleagues do have questions and can keep them brief, which I realize is impossible, I will entertain those questions at this time. But keep in mind that we have two more papers this morning, and three this afternoon.

Mr. HECHLER. Mr. Chairman.

Mr. ROUSH. Mr. Hechler.

Mr. HECHLER. First I would like to commend you, Mr. Roush, for your initiative in setting up this symposium.

I would like to ask you, Dr. Hynek, whether you consider this scientific board of inquiry which you outlined as a sort of a one shot thing which would make its report, or do you consider this to be a continuing body that could examine, as the Air Force has, reports and analyze them? And with this question, I would like to ask if your assumption is that the Air Force, because of its emphasis on national security, has really not measured up to a thorough scientific analysis of UFO's?

Dr. HYNEK: Well, in answer to the first part of that question, sir, I would say I don't believe in a problem as complex as this the one shot approach would be sufficient. I think there should be this board of inquiry which should be a continuing board in the same sense that we have, I presume, boards of study for world population problems, of pollution problems, of world health, and so forth.

The letter that came with the invitation to speak here, strongly stated that we would not discuss the Air Force participation in these matters, and I would like to therefore not speak to that point.

Mr. ROUSH. Mr. Rumsfeld.

Mr. RUMSFELD: Because of the fact it does look as though we will have a busy afternoon on the floor, I very likely will not be present for the remainder of the discussion. I would like to express the hope the other members of the panel might at some point comment on the two recommendations that Dr. Hynek has set forth in his paper. Further, I would hope that each member of the panel, during the afternoon session, might address himself to the questions of priorities.

Assuming that there is some agreement with Dr. Hynek's conclusion that this is an area worthy of additional study, then the question for Congress, of course, becomes what is the priority? This is a rather unique situation in that it is a scientific question that has reached the public prior to the time that anything beneficial can even be imagined. In many instances a scientific effort is not widely known to the public until it is successful.

Each of you are experts in one or more disciplines. I am sure there are a number of things on your shopping lists for additional funding. I would be interested to know how this effort that is proposed here might fit into your lists of priorities.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. ROUSH. Thank you, Mr. Rumsfeld.

Mr. Miller.

Chairman MILLER. Doctor, you mentioned a number of things - population studies at least. A great many of these are carried out not by Government directly, but in the National Science Foundation or through the National Academy of Sciences or scientific bodies themselves.

Do you think, I merely offer this as a suggestion, perhaps the scientific community try to encourage NSF or the scientific societies dealing in this field to take the initiative in doing this, rather than to wait for Government to take the initiative?

Dr. HYNEK. I know, of course, most of the bodies you have mentioned are funded by the Government anyway. Most or a great part of our scientific research today has to be so funded. Private sources are certainly not sufficient. And, therefore, I think it is rather academic, really, to worry too much about who does it. It is more a question of who is going to pay for it.

We have a rather interesting situation here, as Congressman Rumsfeld has already pointed out. This is one of those strange situations in which the cart is sort of before the horse. Generally this results in the scientific laboratories and the results of the studies of scientists finally come to the public attention, but here we have the other situation. It is the
public pressure, the public wants to know actually, more than the scientists, at the moment. So you are facing public pressures, even, definitely more than scientific pressures at the moment.

Chairman MILLER: Unfortunately in some of our problems, for example the NASA problems, where the public is indifferent, the matter of waste disposal, pollution, health, and these things. They are quite indifferent to them, and it takes a lot of effort to get them interested in them sometimes.

The committee has studied this on several occasions, but we have generally had a group of the scientific community behind us to give pressure, to bring pressure, to get some of these things done.

Dr. HYNEK: I think we will see, sir, in this testimony today that you will find a corps of scientists stand ready to do this. In fact, as I mentioned in my testimony, I have private information from a very large number of scientists who are interested.

Chairman MILLER: I think this is one of the values of the symposium.

(End of Hynek testimony)

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