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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1999 > Jan > Jan 3

Jerry Black's Challenge To Whitley Strieber

From: Glenn Joyner <infohead@airmail.net>
Date: Sat, 02 Jan 1999 03:03:12 -0600
Fwd Date: Sun, 03 Jan 1999 15:01:48 -0500
Subject: Jerry Black's Challenge To Whitley Strieber

Hello Errol, and List members:

As you know, I do transcription work for Jerry Black. Here's the
latest "open letter" from Jerry. Please note that his site has
moved to:





An Extensive Review of Whitley Strieber and His Claims of
Encounters With the Visitors

by Jerry Black

January 1999

I have spent the last three and a half to four months carefully
reviewing all of Whitley Strieber's books, beginning with his
book Communion. I have also reviewed the book by Mr. Ed Conroy
by the name of 'A Report on Communion'. All of the books
mentioned are very well written. Both men are accomplished
writers. However, the purpose of my review is to try to
determine whether Mr. Strieber did indeed have the experiences
with the Visitors that he relates throughout his books.

Mr. Ed Conroy's book, Report on Communion, is just that: It is a
report on Communion. It does not scientifically or objectively
investigate the material alleged in Communion, or Mr. Whitley
Strieber. He has gone to great lengths to interview many top
Ufologsts, Whitley Strieber, Mr. Strieber's wife, Ann, Mr.
Strieber's mother, and some neighbors who knew Mr. Strieber
when he was a youngster. All of these interviews are very
interesting, and appear to be well documented. However, this
does not help us evaluate the actual validity of Mr. Strieber's
experiences. Mr. Conroy makes no attempt to sponsor any
psychological evaluation of Mr. Strieber, nor does he make any
attempt to sponsor any polygraph tests for Mr. Strieber. He
accepts the self-examination that Mr. Strieber has made of
himself, and uses that material in writing his book. So,
basically, Ed Conroy has done just what the title of his book
implies; he has merely reported on Communion, and is certainly
not an objective investigation of the material in the book.

Whitley Strieber has had more abductions and encounters with the
"Visitors" than anyone else in the history of Ufology. Of
course, we must remember that Whitley Strieber, as late as the
book written by Ed Conroy, claims that he is not sure that the
Visitors are extraterrestrial. However, we look at all of the
books Mr. Strieber has written, and the covers of them certainly
all do depict humanoid beings that look like what we would
consider to be extraterrestrial beings. I do not know if this is
a marketing ploy by the book company, or if the covers are done
by the direction of Mr. Strieber. But, as one picks up one of
these books, one would naturally assume that Mr. Strieber has had
experience with extraterrestrial beings, as the cover images
depict the particular types of humanoids which are widely
accepted by many as "extraterrestrial."

Having said that, we know that Mr. Strieber has made claims on
the Internet, and on his website, that his experience with the
Visitors is the most well-documented case of abduction and UFO
encounter in the country. We find that to be an untrue
statement. Mr. Strieber has basically self-examined his own

In the beginning Mr. Strieber was at odds with many Ufologsts.
I can only say that, in my own brief experience with Mr.
Strieber, in letting him know that I was going to do this review,
that he certainly does not accept criticism well.

Obviously, one has to expect that when a writer like Mr.
Strieber comes forward and begins writing what he has told
people to be his true experiences with abductions, and with
these Visitors (and for many years before that has been a
prolific and well-known science fiction writer), UFO
investigators would naturally proceed very cautiously in
digesting the material he presents. It is my belief that, in the
beginning, the differences between the UFO researchers and Mr.
Strieber, which kept them at odds for quite a few years, were
basically the fault of Mr. Strieber. He should have been
well-aware of the scrutiny he would be subject to, coming out
with these "true" stories of encounters with the Visitors, after
being such a well-known fiction writer.

Just in my brief contact with Mr. Strieber over the Internet, he
was very antagonistic about my making a review of his work. So
the fact that Mr. Strieber has taken it upon himself to review
his own case, in terms of psychological examinations and
polygraph tests, is certainly questionable, in my opinion.

I found many troubling things in my reading of Whitley Strieber's
books. First of all, he claims, in his books, Communion and
Transformation, to have been basically traumatized by these
continual encounters with the Visitors at his isolated cabin in
New York, during 1985 and 1986, especially. He describes, in
dramatic detail, his being fearful to the point of tears, and
frightened to the point of physiological shock, at these
continual encounters with the Visitors during the numerous
weekend trips that he took to the New York cabin.

However, we are asked to believe that he regularly took his young
son, Andrew, as well as his wife, Ann, with him on these weekend
trips, knowing that the odds were very high that he was going to
be confronted with more experiences with these terrifying
Visitors. I find no logic in this course of action whatsoever.
In fact, if these encounters are indeed real, I find it very
disturbing that he would allow his young son, Andrew, to possibly
be subjected to the vision of these terrifying beings on any
given weekend that he took the boy along. If Andrew had been
subjected to an encounter with the Visitors, the psychological
trauma which he may have suffered could have required some very
extensive psychiatric help for years.

It is equally perplexing that he would subject his wife to the
possibility of these horrifying encounters. So I found this to
be completely out of what one would consider the normal actions
of a loving father and husband, in subjecting his son and wife to
such a scenario, weekend, after weekend, after weekend.

In the front of his book, Transformation, I note the following

Transformation is dedicated to those who have had the courage to
be named in this book as witnesses to my experience.

Then there is a list of well over 20 names here, two of which are
Mary Sue and Patrick Weathers. I had nine of my friends, some
investigators, some not, who had not read the book
Transformation, to read the sentence above, along with the names
listed. I asked them what that meant to them. I asked what they
perceived that the sentence was saying. All nine of them
indicated that they felt like Mr. Strieber was saying that the
people listed, at one time or another, had been in the presence
of Mr. Strieber when he was having an experience of either seeing
an object or possibly encountering Visitors.

However, upon reading the book, I found the statement to be
untrue, or at the very least extremely misleading. None of the
people listed were actually personal witnesses to Mr. Strieber's
experiences. All of these people have had UFO sightings or
experiences of their own, which Mr. Strieber claims helps to
verify his own personal experiences. In the cases of many of
these people, and especially that of Mary Sue and Patrick
Weathers, whose experience occurred in 1955, if the analogy is to
be used, it seems they would be using Mr. Strieber's encounters
to verify their experiences, not the other way around. In any
event, none of these people mentioned has any bearing whatsoever
on the validity of Mr. Strieber's experiences, because all
mentioned had individual experiences on their own, many much
earlier than that of Mr. Strieber. None of them occurred in the
presence of Mr. Strieber, and vice versa. So the statement is
very, very misleading, until one actually reads the book.

Later, at the end of Transformation (and this is also picked up
at the beginning of his book Breakthrough), Whitley Strieber
attempts to offer as proof of his experiences with the aliens the
fact that one evening at the cabin he was hearing knocks on the
roof. The knocks are in the sequence of three, a pause, then
three, and a pause. As Mr. Strieber was putting this information
into his book, Transformation, and it was released to the
publisher, only a few people knew this information. At that
point in time, Ed Conroy made mention to Mr. Strieber that, in
Glen Rock, Wisconsin, there had just been a report that hundreds
of people in the town had heard these knocks on their roofs, with
no explanation. Some of the people even claimed that the knocks
came in sequences of three at a time. Whitley Strieber continued
forward with this in his book Breakthrough, and made mention of
the knocks heard by the hundreds of people in the small Wisconsin
town. He used this at the beginning of the book to illustrate as
proof beyond a shadow of a doubt of his experience with the
Visitors. This certainly is not proof of his encounters with the

During the past 40-odd years, this type of occurrence has
happened many times throughout this country at different
locations. In the early sixties, here, in Cincinnati, Ohio, I
can remember very distinctly (and it can be verified through
newspaper records at the library, if necessary) in the local
section of the newspaper, there was a heading which read What
Goes Boom Boom in the Night? This referred to one evening, early
in the 1960's in the western part of Cincinnati, when hundreds
people heard such knocks on their roofs, with no good

It so happens that one of these hundreds of people was a young
lady who worked at my own place of employment at that time. I
asked her about the occurrence, being curious about all unusual
phenomena, and she could only say that she had heard these knocks
repeatedly on her roof, had run outside, as many other people had
that night, but could find no one on her roof, and no reason for
the noise. She did not mention at that time that the knocks came
in sequences of three. Some people may have. However, the point
I strive to make is that this is a phenomena which has been
occurring for over 40 years, with no rational explanation. There
is no proof or evidence of what causes this strange phenomenon,
and there is certainly no proof that it is, in any way, connected
with extraterrestrials.

Consequently, the fact that Mr. Strieber heard knocks on the roof
of his cabin, and the fact that residents of Glen Rock, Wisconsin
heard similar knocks on their roofs at about the same time that
Transformation was going to print, is no proof whatsoever about
Mr. Strieber's encounters with the Visitors. However, he tries
to intimate that this occurrence is proof of his experience with
the Visitors.

In reality, upon reading all of the books that Mr. Strieber has
written on this subject, there is actually no verification
whatsoever, no proof whatsoever, that Mr. Strieber has had the
experiences that he claims to have had with the alleged Visitors.
Contrary to his claims of his being the best documented case of
abduction and encounters with the Visitors, many other cases in
the field of Ufology seem to have more authentication and
objective investigation to support the contentions of the
principals than do Mr. Strieber's.

Mr. Strieber has basically self-examined his own case. Again, I
can only stress to our readers that one cannot conduct one's own
psychological evaluations and polygraph tests and consider them
as valid. Mr. Strieber has wasted his time and money by
sponsoring and paying for his own psychological and polygraphic

Of the four tests taken, two of the tests were sponsored by
television networks. Again, a television show is not an
objective third party. They have a vested financial interest in
Mr. Strieber passing such tests, so he can appear on their
programs, and thus increase their ratings. So all of Mr.
Strieber's efforts to verify his own case are null and void, from
this writer's perspective. Mr. Strieber's case stands out there
as one which has had no substantiation whatsoever, by any
scientific and objective investigator that we are aware of.

Whitley Strieber certainly has a flair for dramatization, as
well. I noted that some two or three years ago he was on a
television program where a moving video of an alleged alien
being, somewhat in distress, was shown. There were three other
people besides Mr. Strieber on a panel viewing this particular
video. Of course the television program was interested in the
opinions of all four of these alleged abductees.

The other three abductees came forth after viewing the video, and
very calmly stated their opinions. Mr. Strieber, in a very
dramatic fashion, said something to the effect of, "Oh, no, no,
take it away, take it away! I don't want to see it anymore."
Mr. Strieber's actions were very animated and somewhat uncalled
for, especially in view of the fact that he, as an intelligent
human being, had to realize that the chances of this video truly
being that of an actual alien being were less than realistic.

As it turned out, since that time there has been no
substantiation that this video is indeed authentic. So what was
the necessity of the overly dramatic response of Mr. Strieber
regarding this alleged alien? I found it to be unnecessary and
somewhat embarrassing to serious Ufologsts.

Again, just recently, there was a gentleman on the Art Bell Show,
who claimed to have actually killed an alien which had first
killed the man's dog. That gentleman's name was Jonathan Reed.

I am told by friends who heard the first interview of Mr. Reed
that Whitley Strieber was also on the show, and that when Mr.
Reed told his story, again Mr. Strieber was reacting in an overly
dramatic way, gasping, acting as if it were a tremendous story.
He of course had no idea whatsoever if there was any truth to Mr.
Reed's story, or any evidence to support Mr. Reed's claims of
having killed an alien.

Mr. Strieber's actions here remind me of his original reaction
about the Gulf Breeze case, in stating that people should take a
second look Ed Walters' Gulf Breeze photographs. He bases his
entire opinion on this case, besides his actually going to Gulf
Breeze at one time, I believe, on the fact that a close friend of
his saw an object very similar to the Ed Walters object, two days
before the alleged Walters encounters. Obviously Mr. Strieber is
not a UFO investigator, because one cannot rely on one person's
sighting of an object to validate the UFO sighting of another
person. In this case, I obviously do not know what his good
friend saw two days before Ed Walters first took his photographs,
but whatever he saw was not what Ed Walters alleges to have seen,
because it has been conclusively proven that the objects that Ed
Walters photographed were models. Accordingly, there is no way
that Mr. Strieber's friend, two days earlier, could have seen the
objects in the sky that Ed Walters photographed.

The more recent book, Confirmation (which we hear has received a
very bad review by a book critic in New York), is what I call
simply writing a book for the sake of writing it.

In any case, what I am saying, and have said many times before,
one cannot use the experiences and cases of others to validate
and verify one's own. The first two thirds of Transformation
attempts to do this. Mr. Strieber cites other peoples' cases, in
an effort to validate his own story. Each case must stand
independently on its own merits, its own investigation, its own
polygraph tests, its own psychological profiling. But Mr.
Strieber tries to impress us with the fact that other people have
had similar experiences to what he writes about.

The last third of the book deals with his alleged implant. It
appears again that Mr. Strieber is writing the book simply for
the sake of writing it. He claims he has an implant behind his
ear, but when unnamed surgeons attempted to remove it, the
implant moved around, and they ended up only getting a small
piece of cartilage. By his own admission, regarding the
attempted removal of his implant, and even of the removal of one
from another gentleman, there is no proof whatsoever that any
material that has been removed is of extraterrestrial origin.
Again we are left with Mr. Strieber's own evaluation, and his own
self-examination, in the case of the implant.

What has raised our ire most recently, and what should be a clear
indication of where Mr. Strieber is coming from, is the that I
was alerted to the fact (and subsequently told that Mr. Strieber
discussed this on the Art Bell Show) that, in the summer of 1998,
while doing a promotional tour of Confirmation in Toronto,
Canada, he was awakened at 3:00 a.m. by a knock on the door of
his motel room. When he went to the door, there was a small
human being who proceeded to tell him of the gloom and doom that
was forthcoming for this planet.

Mr. Strieber perceives this person to have been from a secret
society operating on this planet. This person seemed to be very
knowledgeable about the Visitors that Mr. Strieber refers to
throughout his books. During that evening, Mr. Strieber, through
information related to him by this human being who belonged to
the "secret society," was given enough material to write a new
book. Mr. Strieber claims he was in the process of writing
another book, called The Edge, and subsequently had to stop the
writing of that book, to get this critically important
information out, which had been given to him about the
forthcoming planetary doom. My problem with that is, if there
was so much gloom and doom information given to him by this
secret society member, would he not, as a good citizen and good
friend to all humanity, want to give this information out on the
Art Bell Show? Or on the Oprah Winfrey Show? Could he not hold
a national press conference, as opposed to taking the time to
write a book? At this particular time I have not yet seen a copy
of that book on the shelves. Wouldn't it be more proper to just
tell everyone, so we could prepare for these looming calamities
as soon as possible? Evidently not. He chooses, as he has in the
path, just to write a book. This, to me, is extremely, extremely

It is my personal view that there is no evidence whatsoever to
support Whitley Strieber's contention that he has had numerous
encounters and abductions with and by beings he refers to as the
Visitors. No objective and scientific investigator has ever
investigated Mr. Strieber's claims. Thus, I can only conclude
that there is no basis to believe any of the claims that Mr.
Strieber has made. Until such time as Mr. Strieber allows a
thorough investigation by objective investigators, there is no
basis for anyone to believe that Whitley Strieber's accounts are

Many of our readers are aware that I used polygraph tests in the
investigation of the three women in Liberty, Kentucky, Mona
Stafford, Elaine Thomas, and Louise Smith, in 1976. All three
women passed the polygraph tests.

Most recently, I have used polygraph tests in the case of Travis
Walton, regarding the movie Fire In the Sky. I was asked by
Tracy Torme, one of the producers of the movie, to re-investigate
the case, which I did for over a year and a half. I subsequently
gave polygraph tests to Travis Walton, Mike Rogers, and Alan
Dallas. All three of these gentlemen passed the polygraph tests
with flying colors, as did the three women in Liberty, Kentucky.

My objectivity and fairness is well-known in the UFO community.
I support the Travis Walton case, and I support the Liberty,
Kentucky case. An extensive investigation, of four and a half
years, into the Ed Walters Gulf Breeze case has conclusively
shown that the case is a hoax. Ed Walters was given the same
opportunity. He was asked on two different occasions by myself,
and on one occasion by Mr. Rex Salisberry, to undergo a third
party polygraph test, properly sponsored. Mr. Walters has
refused all three requests to undergo a properly-given polygraph

At this time, I am asking Mr. Whitley Strieber to take a properly-
administered polygraph test, sponsored by a third party.

As I have said earlier, and as confirmed by Mr. Billy J. Riggs,
who was the President of the Polygraph Association of Florida in
1992, and which is also the view of the National Polygraph
Association, the subject person under investigation cannot take
his own polygraph test. It is considered an invalid test.

In fact, in the words of Mr. Billy J. Riggs, no good competent
polygraph expert, in his opinion, would give a polygraph test
under those circumstances. Mr. Ed Walters tried this, as well.
Of course, his test results were considered null and void. As I
stated earlier, Mr. Walters refused to take a properly-sponsored
polygraph test.

So, Mr. Strieber, I am offering you the opportunity to help
authenticate your experiences, by undergoing this third-party,
properly-administered polygraph test. I am willing to have this
test sponsored, at no expense to you. Many people know that I
have, in the last six months, been very, very fortunate, in the
fact that I now have an impartial sponsor from the west coast (it
is not Robert Bigelow), which has agreed to underwrite
investigations in regard to polygraph examinations, examinations
of alleged alien implants, soil samples, or other major expenses
involved in my UFO research.

With that in mind, Mr. Strieber, I can at this time offer to give
you and your wife, Ann (I must be able to test you both)
polygraph tests at no expense to you. The polygraph expert will
be flown in to your location, delivered to your front door, and
all expenses incurred will be the responsibility of myself, and
underwritten by my sponsor. This test will be administered by a
polygraph expert with over 20 years experience. This will
possibly be either Mr. Hugh Jones, or Mr. Cy Gilson from Arizona.
While that is not a definite situation, we will most definitely
find someone who has at least 20 years experience in the field to
conduct these tests.

I will be the one to make up the four questions to be asked in
the polygraph test. Those questions will be reviewed by the
polygraph expert, and he will change the wording as necessary to
ensure that definite "yes" or "no" answers can be obtained. I can
assure you that all questions will be very blunt and to the

If you are sincere about your experiences, if you are telling the
readers of your books the truth, you should have no reservations
about taking this polygraph test. By testing both you and Ann,
the chances of both of you either failing the tests or passing
the tests incorrectly are extremely small. The more people
involved, the more accurate the tests are.

I will arrange to schedule these tests for you after the first of
the year (1999), at your convenience. The results of the test
will be placed on my website, and the website of others, whether
you pass or whether you fail.

Please be advised that you will have 30 days from January 4,
1999, to respond to the offer of these polygraph tests. If you
do not respond within 30 days, I will assume you are refusing to
take the third party polygraph tests that I have requested of
you. I will instruct the transcriptionist of this letter to post
it to a public UFO discussion forum, and to e-mail a copy to you

I eagerly await your reply.


Jerry Black



Mr. Jerry Black has been researching and investigating UFOs in a
scientific and objective manner for the past 40 years. His
Internet website can be found at:


 Mr. Black invites your comments on the above. He does not have
 an e-mail address, but can be reached at the following address
      and phone number:

       Jerry Black
       6276 Taylor Pike
      Blanchester, Ohio 45107
       (513) 625-2613

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