UFO Believers - Parts I & II
From: UFO UpDates - Toronto <ufoupdates.nul>
Date: Fri, 21 Apr 2006 09:25:18 -0400
Fwd Date: Fri, 21 Apr 2006 09:25:18 -0400
Subject: UFO Believers - Parts I & II
Source: Amercian Chronicle - Beverly Hills, California, USA
April 18 & 19 2006
UFO Believers - Parts I & II
Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary gives the following
definition(s) for the verb, believe:
1 a : to have a firm religious faith b : to accept as true,
genuine, or real -ideals we believe in- -believes in ghosts-
2 : to have a firm conviction as to the goodness, efficacy,
or ability of something -believe in exercise-
3 : to hold an opinion : THINK -I believe so-
1 a : to consider to be true or honest -believe the reports-
-you wouldn't believe how long it took- b : to accept the word
or evidence of -I believe you- -couldn't believe my ears-
2 : to hold as an opinion : SUPPOSE -I believe it will rain
- be=B7liev=B7er noun
- not believe : to be astounded at -I couldn't believe my
Intransitive, by the way means: not transitive; especially:
characterized by not having or containing a direct object.
When associating the verb, believe or the noun believer, one
who has a firm religious faith, or one who accepts something
as true or genuine, etc., with any given subject, it puts the
onus on the individual; that is it gives rise to doubt, it
leaves room for skepticism, contestability=97it isn't accepted as
an established fact.
More often then not, when one comes across a news report
concerning a UFO, by a main stream media source (one of the
networks, CNN etc.) it usually melds the verb, and or noun,
believe, believer(s) into the story. Those of us who pay
attention see this as a common theme, and for the layperson who
can recall anything on UFOs, I'm sure you remember the
Although the acronym UFO for U.nidentified F.lying S.aucers
can be found in declassified Air Force documents, (prior to
1952) it is Capt. Edward J. Ruppelt, Chief of the Air Force's
Project Blue Book who takes credit for making it the popular
'official' term, for the then, 'Flying Saucers'.
The underlying importance of this action is that the description
of what was flying in US airspace (as well as all over the
world) at the time went from being a definitive object, i.e., a
flying craft in the shape of a flying saucer, to that of an
There is most certainly a psycho-sociological impact when an
administrative body (particularly back in the 50's) in essence
goes from describing what these objects are, to stating,
Of course we later would see the Air Force's transparent
objective in giving a conventional explanation to these now
unknown objects. To that end, it is much easier to argue that an
unknown was actually ball lightning e.g., then to change a
flying saucer into the same.
Many Ufologists have theorized that this seemingly small word
change was indeed a calculated psychological move, in part to
de-emphasize the unusual activity over American skies=97whether
this is true or not, there certainly was an impact nonetheless.
Although the term, UFO was introduced to the American lexicon
in the early 50's, it's sibling Flying Saucer wasn't quick to
leave=97in part because of so many reports describing a disc or
saucer shaped craft in regards to UFOs.
I think it important to note that the media in the early days of
Ufology took the subjects of UFOs very seriously, which was of
course was a direct reflection of our society; in fact the
largest press conference post WWII was in July 1952, and the
topic was, you guessed it UFOS!
In a previous article (UFO Ignorance) which describes the
aforementioned event (UFOs flying over Washington for weeks) a
reader wrote in to say:
"I was fascinated by your account of the 1952 UFO flap around
DC. I'm 68 now, but at age 13, I was there, living with my
family - temporarily - in the sedate, colonial Alexandria home
of my mother's sister and her husband. (My father was an Army
officer. En route to Bogot=E1, Colombia, Dad was going through
Pentagon briefing.) What I recall as most striking about this
flap was the ubiquitous excitement on local television,
newspapers, and so forth. You didn't mention this in your piece,
but individual sightings seemed to be all but continuous. Cars
were piled up along the shoulders of the Mt. Vernon Parkway.
Crowds gazing out across the Potomac toward DC and National
Airport came and went. [Emphasis added]. I remember my grown
cousin - Jim (a broker in the family real estate business) -
arriving at the house one day all but breathless with
excitement over a sighting.
As a sociologist I've long been fascinated by how civil
authorities are able to virtually erase the direct experience
(in this case) of literally hundreds of witnesses. Years would
pass before my own inquiries would lead me to understand that
UFOs represent a vital dimension of the human picture -
hidden though it is behind smoke, mirrors, disinformation and
It's safe to say that the media back then didn't associate the
phenomenon with terms, such as believe, believers enthusiasts
etc., they reported the events as they happened, in a clear and
concise manner. And as evidenced by the declaration from the
reader above =97 it was quite a hair-raising experience!
For those of us that have been around long enough to watch the
transition of the media reporting the news to the editorializing
of it, and some would say as of late the propagation of it=97many
of us realize the power the medium wields which publishes this
information. I often have said that the greatest power on the
earth is the media, and that the most powerful people, are those
that hold the reins.
Most military historians can cite the use of, and agree upon the
importance of propaganda and its sister censorship. The
layperson may find it surprising that the powers-that-be used
those very tools from the very introduction (in a public way) to
the UFO phenomenon.
When UFOs were reported off the coast in 1941 which set off two
alarms and initiated a blackout, in the aftermath the War
Department over turned eye witness accounts of their Generals in
place and said the actions were only tests. Similarly, in
February of 1942 it happened again, the powers-that-be
discounted the declarations of thousands of witnesses, and gave
an explanation of jittery war nerves.
As the war progressed and pilots were reporting what they
nicknamed, Foo Fighters, (UFOs trailing our aircraft) a silence
order was quickly put into effect. After the war in 1946, the
Swedish officials exorcised censorship with the media in regards
to what would be called Ghost Rockets.
Following the death (in 1947) of two official UFO investigators
(Brown & Davidson) of the Army's CIC (Counter Intelligence
Corps) in a fiery airplane crash, after meeting flying saucer
witness Kenneth Arnold the military put a muzzle on the media
In 1953, a group was put together by the CIA called The
Robertson Panel, led by its namesake H. P. Robertson, a noted
physicist from the California Institute of Technology. The panel
consisted of a distinguished group of non-military scientists to
study the UFO issue. It included Samuel A. Goudsmit, a nuclear
physicist from the Brookhaven National Laboratories; Luis
Alvarez, a high-energy physicist; Thornton Page, the deputy
director of the Johns Hopkins Operations Research Office and an
expert on radar and electronics; and Lloyd Berkner, a director
of the Brookhaven National Laboratories and a specialist in
Following a very brief investigation the panel concluded that
the manipulation of information to the public was paramount. The
panel recommended to the National Security Council that UFO
reports be debunked and a policy of public education instituted
to reassure the masses of the lack of evidence behind UFOs. It
suggested using the media, advertising, business clubs, schools,
and even the Disney corporation to get the message across.
The Air Force terminated its (overt) investigation (Project Blue
Book) of UFOs in 1969 with the completion of the Condon Report.
The common consensus amongst Ufologists is that Blue Book was at
the least a weak attempt at investigating the phenomenon, and at
most, an internal cog of the debunking process.
Which brings us back to recent times; back to the media using
terms like "believe", "believers", "enthusiasts", etc., in
regard to reporting the UFO phenomenon. (Noted Ufologist Richard
Hall in How To debunk UFOs And Discredit UFO Proponents, writes,
"Always refer to them as UFO believers or ETH believers,
implying that their position is faith-based.") Some believe that
there exists a conspiracy today executed by those whom hold the
reins to what Americans read, see or hear regarding the news,
specifically in relation to UFO reports.
Whether the latter is true or not, is open for debate; however,
in my view, the past actions of the powers-that-be certainly
have had a psycho-sociological effect on society, as well as the
media and this phenomenon has crossed generations.
Imagine if you will a news report about the Empire State
Building, with a reporter stating, Empire State Building
believers gathered today... or Washington Monument believers
stated today... Doesn't make sense does it? Associating the verb
'believers' with a factual thing is nonsensical =97 period! The
irony of course is that the term UFO was created by the very
agency that was most fervent in its attempts to discredit it.
[Thanks to Stuart Miller of http://www.uforeview.net for the lead]