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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2005 > May > May 17

Re: Salla On Greg Bishop's Project Beta - Salla

From: Michael Salla <exopolitics.nul>
Date: Mon, 16 May 2005 06:37:09 -1000
Fwd Date: Tue, 17 May 2005 05:33:34 -0400
Subject: Re: Salla On Greg Bishop's Project Beta - Salla


>From: Greg Bishop <exclmid.nul>
>To: ufoupdates.nul
>Date: Fri, 13 May 2005 13:44:12 -0700 (PDT)
>Subject: Re: Salla On Greg Bishop's Project Beta

>>From: Michael Salla <exopolitics.nul>
>>To: ufoupdates.nul
>>Date: Wed, 11 May 2005 04:48:44 -100
>>Subject: Salla On Greg Bishop's Project Beta

><snip>

>Dr. Salla,

>I'd like to thank you for reading my book, Project Beta, and
>applying some critical thought to it. This is indeed rare, and I
>appreciate it.

>I would however like to take issue with some of your
>statements. You apparently misread my words or chose to let your
>preconceptions dictate your impressions in a number of areas.

>In doing research for the book, I tried to let former
>intelligence personnel give me their side of the story, and see
>where it fit in with the Ufological literature and known facts,
>as well as how their accounts jibed with what has been publicly
>reported on the fallout of the Bennewitz case, as well as my own
>impressions and observations after interviewing others.

Aloha Greg, in giving the side of the intelligence personnel, I
think it would have been fair to have given an objective
analysis of the side of those presenting the 'pro-Bennewitz'
case in the UFO literature. How can one perform an objective
study if one side is presented as little more than a set of
unsubstantiated rumors, urban legends and disinformation, and
the other side, the intelligence side is given an objective
analysis using avaiable documents and testimonies? Basically
what you've done is constructed a straw man in terms of the pro-
Bennewitz camp and given it a knock out punch with your objecive
analysis of the 'anti-Bennewitz' or perspective of former
intelligence personnel.

>I have already addressed the issue of dealing with intelligence
>agents in another post on this list. The gist of my opinion is
>that you must deal with intelligence personnel if you want to
>get to the center of the Government/UFO 'onion'. Listening only
>to those who tell you what you want to hear is just as flawed as
>ignoring them, or worse, believing all the information that they
>feed you is true. It has been almost a quarter century since the
>events described in Project Beta occurred. The passage of time
>and much of the sensitivity surrounding the projects at Kirtland
>have had time to cool down. This makes it more likely that
>people involved in the disinfo campaign at the time can talk
>more freely about the subject.

I don't know how analysing the testimonies of Paul Bennewitz,
Phil Schneider, Michael Wolf, Thomas Castello, Daniel Burisch,
Bob Lazar, Myrna Hansen, etc., is listening to those who "tell
you what you want to hear". Are you insinuating that those
researchers trying to make sense of whistleblowers and witnesses
describing secret underground bases filled with
extraterrestrials who perform experiments on humans are
fabricating their own horror story for entertainment? Perhaps
those like myself who take such whistleblowers seriously need to
take a course in UFOlogy 101 where we demand hard evidence and
documentation of those claiming the existence of such
underground bases. Regardless of ample testimonial evidence that
'hard evidence' and documentation are regularly withdrawn and
tampered with by national security agencies, we just invoke the
demand "where's the hard evidence", and we graduate as
legitimate UFO researchers.

>I find it interesting that people such as Col. Phil Corso and
>Robert Dean were welcomed with open arms because they said what
>we wanted to hear, although I know of no evidence uncovered as
>yet to back up their most sensational claims. I am not calling
>them liars or disinfo agents, I am merely making a point of
>perspective here. The best procedure I think is to listen to
>their stories, and check up on the information, as Robert and
>Ryan Wood - among others - are currently doing.

Why do you assume whistleblowers tell us what we want to hear?
Their experiences come from long military services where they
had the opportunity to experience what they claim to have
witnessed. Revealing information about classified projects is no
small matter and individuals doing so have great courage in
risking the penalties. I think we can do more than denigrate
them by claiming they are telling us what we want to hear.

>How are whistleblowers more believable than intelligence
agents? How do we know that these people are not intelligence
agents themselves, or have been set up? If disinformation works
well, the target will not only believe what they have been told
or shown, but will keep their nose on the line and continue on
their own, even without any subsequent confirming evidence. This
is a well-demonstrated trait. If we believe whistleblower
testimony out of hand, and reject intelligence leaks, we are not
looking at the full picture.

These are good points. I have no easy answer. We need to be
alert to all these possibilities and be as discerning as
possible. In the absence of hard evidence and documentation that
will give us quick answers, we need to develop skills in
analysing a witnesses integrity, veracity, etc. Even then, it
may not be enough to have 100 percent confidence. That's why the
social sciences are not as precise as the physical sciences.
What happens in people's heads is much more difficult to work
out than the behavior of colliding billiard balls and other
empirical phenomenon.

>You assume I only used information provided to me by Doty and
>Moore. I also talked to Jerry Miller, Gabe Valdez, Leo Sprinkle,
>Garry Massey, Joe Stefula, Christa Tilton, Grant Cameron and
>Eric Davis, among many others, as well as published information
>in newspapers, books, periodicals, and on the internet, as well
>as declassified documents. This was made clear in the text as
>well as in the acknowledgements section of the book. Although
>the interviewees provided balance and helpful suggestions, as I
>recall none of these people were seriously suspicious about any
>sort of base at Dulce - with the possible exception of Christa
>Tilton. Even Officer Valdez told me that he did not observe
>anything along these lines on the Archuleta Mesa. Valdez lived
>there and dealt with the terrain and residents in the area on a
>daily basis. There were certainly cattle mutilated, and strange
>lights aplenty, but no evidence of an underground base.

I certainly find no flaw in your willingness to seek out a broad
representation of witnesses and researchers to support your
argument. You research was very thorough in describing the
position of those that thought that Bennewitz was disinformed
and was disseminating tainted material. In that sense, you earn
the very highest marks and I'm sure that many veteran
researchers in the UFO community will find your analysis
compelling and may resent my chastising you for not seriously
considering whistleblower testimonies. However, I wonder who
else you would have interviewed if you took some of the
whistleblowers claims of Schneider, Burisch, etc., seriously.

>How do you know what was "genuine" in Bennewitz' reports? You
>claim that I assume his whole theory of underground base and
>captured humans (I never mentioned any captured people) was
>solely a product of disinformation. This is not the case. What I
>did say is that the Air Force and NSA capitalized on existing
>aspects of his theory for their own ends.

Yes, that is an important qualification. Thanks for making your
position clearer.

>Claims of whistleblowers are just like the claims of government
>agents - we have to check the facts if they are available. Lazar,
>Schneider, Wolf and Burisch had incredible stories to tell about
>Dulce, but like Corso, Dean, and even Doty there is little or no
>supporting evidence. (I double checked Doty's and Moore's
>statements with those of others-within the government and the
>UFO field, as well as published accounts. If they matched, I
>included them. If not, I specifically stated so.) If Schneider
>was murdered, was it because he was talking too much about alien
>bases, or was there another reason? No one has answered this
>question to date, although Valdez showed me letters from
>Schneider's widow asking for his help in investigating his
>death. I don't recall her mentioning anything about underground
>bases. None of these people talked about Dulce until a decade
>after Bennewitz had first started his reports. We are left with
>rumors and claims, but no reliable information to back them up.
>Plausible is not factual. The picture they paint is quite
>incredible and frightening, but I am not dismissing their claims
>out of hand.

I'm glad to hear that. I think Schneider's case is especially
interesting. It has all the characteristics of someone being
eliminated for talking too much about his classified work. I do
believe that he was 'eliminated' as a direct result of his
testimony about underground bases and the various agreements
reached with ETs by covert agencies. Disclosure Project
whistleblowers such as Don Phillips and Daniel Salter talk about
the 'death squads' used to eliminate those who break security.
These are serious claims. As you say, without documentation and
hard evidence, what do we do? We need to tread warily, and
neither jump too quickly to conclusions either for or against
the testimony. I don't think there are easy answers here and we
need to be discerning, and do our best in analysing all the
evidence.

>I did not say that the $75,000 grant was given to Bennewitz as
>part of a "sting". You state, "What is more likely is that
>Bennewitz had developed the means for intercepting electronic
>transmissions that were of great interest to the Air Force."
>Except for the fact that I wrote that the originating agency was
>actually the NSA, this is exactly what I maintained! I think
>that you let yourself get so involved by what you thought you
>read, that you didn't understand a major aspect of the case as I
>tried to explain it.

I agree, that it's important to demonstrate the role of
different agencies and that these may have had conflicting
agendas. Perhaps the NSA was interested in what Bennewitz had
discovered, while AFOSI initiated a program of discrediting him.
So there's a division of labor here between different
intelligence agencies based on their primary functions.

>You assume that the Air Force (as you say) wanted to find out
>what the aliens were doing by using Bennewitz' expertise. If
>that was the case, all they had to do was either copy his setup
>or confiscate his equipment. This would not have been difficult,
>since he was convinced that he was in their confidence. I
>followed the more likely scenario.

However what if the Air Force (or more correctly the NSA as you
point out) was constrained by certain agreements in place
between extraterrestrials and government agencies? One of those
agreements may have limited the degree to which the Air force
could electronically monitor the base activities of the
extraterrestrials. In the Charles Hall testimony we have a
description of how the Air Force and an extraterrestrial race
reached agreements that were followed to the letter at Nellis
AFB. Perhaps something also happened at Archeluta/Dulce whereby
a private civilian such as Bennewitz could supply intelligence
that the agencies couldn't do themselves under the terms of an
agreement. If Bennewitz and others are correct that
extraterrestrials have reached agreements with covert government
entitities, then it would be plausible that the terms of an
agreement would be that there would not be electronic
surveillance of the base. This would be similar to how a
government opens an embassy in a foregin country and the
agreement proscribes electronic surveillance of the embassy by
the host nation.

>Bennewitz was flown over the Archuleta Mesa on at least two
>occasions to look at the supposed indications of an underground
>base there. The Air Force had actually placed props on the
>ground to draw his attention to this area and away from Kirtland
>Air Force Base. Why would they do this if there really was a
>base under the mesa? Wouldn't they simply have told Bennewitz
>that there was nothing of interest there? They knew that he was
>contacting elected officials and news media about his concerns.
>It would seem self-defeating let this secret out.

Bennewitz was an electronics specialist that could trace the
source of electronic transmissions. He traced these to the
Archelutta Mesa and also had numerous sightings of UFOs in the
Dulce area. I'm not sure of the prop story to divert Bennewitz's
attention from Kirtland to the Archuleta Mesa/Dulce area. It
sounds like a classic disinformation strategy to explain away
how Bennewitz was interested in underground activities at Dulce.
So I don't believe the Air Force placed props there as you were
told presumably by Doty? It sounds like the kind of tale he
would have weaved during his service. I would say you were too
quick to accept this as the basis of Bennewitz's interest in the
location of Dulce.

>On the Art Bell program about a month ago, Richard Doty stated
>that he knew the Roswell incident was a crashed alien craft. If
>it were not for the fact that Doty is persona non grata in the
>UFO community, this would have been greeted as a revelation. Was
>this a another ploy by Doty to keep us listening to other lies
>he chooses to tell? He has been out of the Air Force for over 10
>years. What would be the purpose of such shenanigans? I know
>many Ufologists will say that he still dances to his piper's
>tune, and 'you never really retire from intelligence work', but
>this stretches my own credulity. Besides, as I mentioned
>already, he was not the sole source for the narrative of the
>book.

I think this is a fair point. I don't know how best to deal with
someone like Doty who has clearly played a role in disseminating
disinformation. I know that Clifford Stone played a role in
disseminating disinformation to a target concering an crash-
retreival incident - a female UFO researcher. Stone later
confessed to this and regretted it. Stone however claims he
would have gone to the grave maintaining silence and his loyalty
oath were it not for the death of his son. It seems that was the
catalyst that turned him around. I don't know much about Doty
and will read his book with Collins and listen to some of his
interviews to understand his motivations and integrity in coming
forward. I remain suspicious but will be open to the possibility
that he is genuinely contributing to the UFO community rather
than dancing to his old master's tune.

>I realized that I didn't have much more to go on than most
>members of the public, so I decided to follow the information I
>was given, and come up with the most likely scenario. I am not a
debunker or rabid skeptic. Far from it. See:

>www.excludedmiddle.com

>for some of my earlier writings on the UFO subject.

>To me, the evidence pointed at a disinfo campaign and little
else. If there is any reliable evidence for a joint human-alien
base in Dulce besides uncheckable testimony, I would like to see
it.

This is precisely the problem. How can one see "reliable
evidence" of a highly classified project. Possessing such
evidence is a crime and those even discussing the existence of
such a project are violating national security. You and other
UFO researchers speak casually about the need for 'verifiable
evidence, yet don't appreciate the classified nature of the
projects discussed by whistleblowers. I've come up with a list
of ten right questions for whistleblowers that I recently
distributed on the forum and which you can find online at:

http://www.exopolitics.org/Exo-Comment-30.htm

>It is unfortunate that few of Bennewitz' photos of the area
>survive. Those that do show nothing conclusive. Colleagues who
>saw his aerial photos at the time could not pick out anything
>substantive, no matter how hard they tried.

>It seems to me that your concern stems from a core belief that
>the alien-military alliance or at least interaction is a fait
>accompli. I cannot subscribe wholeheartedly to a scenario for
>which there has been no conclusive proof. It is very interesting
>to study and speculate, but presently, an intellectual exercise
>is all we have. There is nothing wrong with this, but there are
>much better issues available in which to plant a basis in
>reality.

I have reached the conclusion from the testimonies of a number
of whistleblowers that the "alien-military alliance" exists.
That is not a 'core belief but a result of reading numerous
whistleblower testimonies since I became interested in the
extraterrestrial hypothesis. My entry into the the UFO field was
listening to Greer's Disclosure Project Press Conference in
2001. I was never interested in UFO sightings before that, but
became interested in whistleblower testimonies about secret
agreements, cover up of UFO sightings, secret committee system
that oversees deep black projects that allegedly deal with EBEs,
ETVs, etc. In the discipline of Political Science whistleblower
testimonies are regarded very highly and studied closely to
unravel what's happening in different government agencies. We
even have Federal whistleblower protection laws in place in the
US and many countries in recognition of the service
whistleblower's play in ensuring tranparent and honest
governance. In contrast, I found the UFO community regularly
dismisses whistleblower testimonies - there is a rather large
gray box in UFO research gathering dust with many precious
jewels that have been forgotten. The treatment given to
whistleblowers is a major omission by UFO researchers and
hopefully explains why I'm on this forum and trying to give
whistleblower testimonies the kind of recognition they deserve.

>You suggest that I stained Bennewitz' memory by my treatment of
him in Project Beta. This is the opposite of my feelings and why
I took great pains to emphasize this in the book. That's why I
dedicated it to him. What I wanted to show was that even this
brilliant man could be fooled by his own tunnel vision and his
ears tuned only to what he had already decided was true, instead
of weighing the evidence on a case-by-case basis.

I'm sorry but what you say here is what I principally objected
to in your work. You refer to his "own tunnel vision" and his
"ears tuned only to what he had already decided was true". Why
is that not staining his memory? It seems that you have accepted
all that Doty and Moore have revealed, with minor support of a
number of others you interviewed, to paint what appears to be a
compelling picture of Bennewitz as a brilliant yet deluded man.
If you seriously considered the testimony of some of the
whistleblowers I mentioned, you may have reached a different
conclusion. I think that is what we owe Bennewitz who paid a
high price for honestly reporting his findings to a very
sceptical and hard nosed UFO community.

>You contend that Moore announced his complicity in the disinfo
campaign to cover up for the fact that there actually _was_ an
underground base. I suppose that this is possible, but this
tactic launches us even further into speculation.

>Project Beta deals with far more than the question of an
>underground base. Divesting this subject from the rest of the
>book does the story, and my research a disservice. We need to
>emphasize what is provable to disinterested parties, based on
>something besides (or in addition to) the testimony of
>whistleblowers. When we are dealing in human experience, i.e.
>something with which we are all familiar - secret weapons,
>government malfeasance, etc. - we can investigate claims based
>on a reality which is widely accepted, but to apply this to the
>UFO question is an area which has been problematic at best.

I can't fault you for adopting a methodology that many in the
UFO community accept as rigorous scientific research method. The
field has been dominated by the methodology first created by
pioneers such as Donald Keyhoe, Allen Hynek, Jim MacDonald,
Richard Hall, Stanton Friedman, etc.  My own exopolitical model
is strongly resisted since it doesn't place much emphasis on the
need for documentation and verifiable evidence. As you say, your
book will be helpful for disinterested parties who seek
verifiable evidence. However, it's in the unverifiable evidence
that the truth will be found. That is something many
increasingly are realizing and why whistleblowers need to have
their testimonies seriously considered.

>I did not read any of the other responses to your post before
>writing this, so I apologize for any repetition of subjects, and
>thank those who I am told have supported me.

While you may feel my comments are perhaps an unwelcome
spotlight on your methodological approach to the Bennewitz saga,
I believe you have done him and others a service in resurrecting
his case and bringing it to the attention of many in the UFO
community. In that sense, I think your book succeeds admirably
in bringing into the focus the challenges that confront us in
dealing with the disinformation leveled against UFO researchers.


In peace

Michael Salla




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