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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1998 > Jul > Jul 4

Re: UFOs not worthy of study?

From: bruce maccabee <brumac@compuserve.com>
Date: Sat, 4 Jul 1998 12:40:41 -0400
Fwd Date: Sat, 04 Jul 1998 16:08:00 -0400
Subject: Re: UFOs not worthy of study?

>From: Joe Murgia <Ufojoe1@aol.com>
>Date: Thu, 2 Jul 1998 19:50:48 EDT
>To: updates@globalserve.net
>Subject: UFOs not worthy of study?

>I think some of the more eloquent, detail orientated
>people on this list should write a response to this
>editorial from the N.Y. Post. Bruce Mac. and
>Stanton Friedman immediately come to mind
>among others.

>Editorial email - letters@nypost.com

>>From N.Y. Post Online Editorial




>"Panel Urges Study of UFO Reports," ran the front-page headline
>in Monday's Washington Post. According to that Post, an
>independent scientific review directed by a Stanford physicist
>said that UFO sightings need serious study. The implication: The
>UFO industry has now received the intellectual backing of
>serious scientists. >

>But the sad fact is that The Washington Post has been taken for
>a good long ride by one of the more superficially respectable
>organizations on the lunatic fringe - an association for the
>sort of credulous academic who overdosed on science fiction as a
>teen-ager, is a sucker for ESP and Eastern mysticism and is
>drawn to the kind of crank who claims that Martians built the

THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE HAS BEEN SENT However, probably won't see
th light of day outside this List.


New York Post

Dear Editor,

  The Editor of the New York Post has criticized the
Washington Post for being "taken for a good long ride" by the
Society for Scientific Exploration. The Washington Post
publicized the report of a panel of independent scientists who
evaluated UFO sighting evidence and concluded that because, some
sightings were unexplainable, they deserve further serious

   The tone of the editorial indicates that the editor knows
next to nothing about the present understanding of UFO sighting
reports, next to nothing about the history of the subject and
next to nothing about the intense debate continually being
carried on within the community of scientifically oriented UFO

   The editor asks, why would "actual science professors put
their name to a report like this?" The implied answer is that
these professional scientists are "given to wild fantasies." The
editor presents this idea with certainty, even citing previous
examples of scientists with wild ideas (e.g. Isaac Newton,
Michael Faraday) without stating that he/she had actually talked
to any of the UFO panel scientists to assess their level of

  According to the editor, the SSE panel says the reason UFO
sightings have never been taken seriously is fear of ridicule or
because of a government conspiracy. The editor calls this a "big
lie." It is clear from this that the editor really does not
understand what has been going on. The fear of ridicule is real.
I was on a call-in talk show in the Washington, D.C. area and
heard Dr. Jay Melosh, one of the panel scientists and a UFO
skeptic, tell the talk show host that for a young scientist to
become publicly interested in studying UFO sightings could be
professional suicide. The implication is that such studies
should only be carrier out by tenured professors or scientists
with well established backgrounds in conventional science. As
for the government conspiracy aspect, it is clear from the
historical record, available to anyone including the editor for
review (e.g., the UFO files of Air Force Intelligence released
within the last 12 years, the UFO files of the FBI released 20
years ago and now on line at www.fbi.gov and the UFO files of
the CIA released some 20 years ago) that the US intelligence
agencies and the Air Force in particular took these sightings,
especially the ones by Air Force personnel, very seriously.
Furthermore, according to the FBI "X" file (yes, it includes
sighting reports entitled "Security Matter - X"; look it up in
the web documents!) in 1952 Air Force intelligence told the FBI
that 3% of the sightings could not be explained and that the
objects reported in these sightings "may possibly be ships from
another planet such as Mars."(FBI document dated July 29, 1952).
On the same day that AF Intelligence told this to the FBI, in a
press conference the AF General in charge of Intelligence, John
Samford, told the American public that all the sightings were
natural phenomena. This sort of contradiction between what the
Air Force would say privately and what it would say publicly has
led to the present state of confusion over just what information
the Air Force uncovered year ago. It is no wonder that the
citizens of this country suspect that they have not been told
the whole story.

  The editor correctly points out that UFO sightings have been
"exhaustively invesigated by genuinely openminded people over
and over again." The editor then states that "there is no -
repeat, no - convincing evidence of space aliens visiting the
earth in suspiciously Hollywoodesque flying saucers." I suppose
the crux of the matter here is not "Hollywoodesque" but rather
what one accepts as "convincing evidence." Under ordinary
non-UFO conditions multiple witness, daytime reports of
phenomena seen clearly and for considerable time durations (many
seconds to minutes) and perhaps supported by film, video or
radar would be at least mildly convincing to the intelligent
person. There are such UFO sightings (several of which were
evaluated by the panel and left unexplained) for which there
seems to be no possibility of misidentification, delusion or
hoax. At the very least these sightings point toward something
new, something unexplained. Some of these sightings also involve
descriptions of objects which seem to be constructed craft of
some sort. (Note: Hollywood, starting in the 1950's, has
followed the UFO/saucer sightings with the creation of
"Hollywoodesque" saucers, not the other way around.) It is
certainly true that the field of UFO research is littered with
the hopes, dreams and faulty theories of many people who "want
to believe," but the hard core of the UFO evidence does not lie
within this litter. If the editor would take time to look beyond
the Hollywood glitter and the tabloid press, the editor would
find that the UFO subject is grounded in much more solid

The value of information is in what you do as a result of it.
One has the option to ignore it or to pusue it. UFO information
is of this sort. Clearly the editor intends to ignore it, which
is fine. However, the editor should apply his/her own criterion
of "sweet reason", leave out "true religion" and not criticize
scientists who do wish to pursue this information in a rigorous

Yours truly,
Dr. Bruce Maccabee