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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2007 > Dec > Dec 10

Re: Penniston NP Conference & King

From: Martin Shough <parcellular.nul>
Date: Mon, 10 Dec 2007 12:02:54 -0000
Archived: Mon, 10 Dec 2007 09:13:04 -0500
Subject: Re: Penniston NP Conference & King

>From: Nick Pope <contact.nul>
>To: UFO UpDates <ufoupdates.nul>
>Date: Sat, 8 Dec 2007 14:48:13 -0000
>Subject: Re: Penniston NP Conference & King

>>From: Martin Shough <parcellular.nul>
>>To: <ufoupdates.nul>
>>Date: Mon, 3 Dec 2007 16:49:55 -0000
>>Subject: Re: Penniston NP Conference & King

>>>From: Nick Pope <contact.nul>
>>>To: <ufoupdates.nul>
>>>Date: Mon, 3 Dec 2007 11:11:47 -0000
>>>Subject: Re: Penniston NP Conference & King


>>So if I have this right, Penniston confirmed that in his
>>original statement he did say 50 meters was "the closest I got
>>at any point", but now claims that he just "left out some
>>details"? I find this difficult to square with the believably
>>consistent picture painted by the original statements of all
>>five people involved. That picture doesn't seem to me to be a
>>result of just passively "leaving out details". These accounts
>>imply a conspiracy to actively invent an interlocking false
>>story - and one done in a very subtle fashion. Perhaps they
>>were subtle people. But if they did this for the purpose of
>>suppressing the embarrassing fact that they really saw a
>>mechanical device at close quarters, why did Penniston shoot
>>them all in the foot by claiming to have "positively
>>identified" the lights as a mechanical device? I find it
>>much easier to believe that these original statements are
>>ingenuous. If there are good reasons not to think this,
>>can you summarise what they are (other than Penniston's
>>changed story I mean)? The relevant passages are quoted below
>>for reference.


>Some issues concerning the original witness statements are
>examined in You Can't Tell The People. To give one example of
>the problems with them, Edward Cabansag told Georgina Bruni
>that  he signed his statement without looking at it.

Thanks Nick

The problem I am struggling with is precisely that I don't see
any issues with the original statements, as they stand. They
read very convincingly, to me. They saw some wierd display of
blue and red lights that behaved in an apparent will-o'-the-
whisp fashion and vanished before they got nearer than 50m. At
that distance Penniston (at least) was "positive" they were
attached to an unknown mechanical device. Fine. The problem is
with the emergence of a new narrative which claims that they got
right up close and actually touched this thing.

The new story requires the original descriptions of all five
direct and indirect witnesses to have been made up in collusion
for motives of self-protection. But reading the subtly different
versions of the event and the individual tones of voice in which
they are couched I don't find this believable. Too subtle and
too cunning a deception, which yet is ineffective in covering up
the "positive identification" of a mechanical UFO which
supposedly was the motive of the deception. That's why my
suspicious antennae twitch uncontrollably.

As I see it, faced with the fact that the original statement
doesn't support the story he now wishes to be associated with,
Cabansag tells us in his defence that he didn't read what he
signed back then. In other words this claim implies that he had
no idea what was typed above his signature, and therefore he
can't be held responsible for its untruth. OK. But this would
imply that he innocently thought he was signing a different and
true statement, and this is inconsistent with the theory that he
told a lie for reasons of personal protection.

Perhaps, then, his statement was fabricated by an unknown party,
and like the others Cabansag knew he was signing a fabricated
account but so trusted this other party to get it right on his
behalf that he felt he didn't need to read it? But then the
failure-to-read-before-signing defence becomes incongruous: If
you'd always known it was fabricated, why would you plead that
you didn't know what you were signing? This is then faux
innocence and another level of deception.

And this scenario conflicts with Penniston's recent confirmation
that the statement ascribed to him is to the best of his
recollection the statement he wrote - no one fabricated this
account on his behalf. So perhaps it was he who coordinated or
ghost-wrote the others' false statements then? But if so he
failed spectacularly to follow the script and undermined the
collective cover story by saying that he positively identified
the object as a mechanical device when he should have stopped at
the agreed story that they chased some lights.

Well maybe this statement wasn't supposed to get used. Maybe it
just slipped through unedited and talk of the machine was the
one mistake in an otherwise carefully contrived ruse? But Sgt
Chandler said exactly the same thing in his own statement and
cited Penniston's real-time radio report as the source for it.
The same report of a "definite mechanical object" was confirmed
by Buran who testified to his conviction that Penniston had seen
something "out of the realm of explanation". If there was
collusion to suppress career-damaging admissions that they had
seen an unknown mechanical device, why do Chandler's and Buran's
stories exactly support Penniston's story of "positively
identifiying" an unknown mechanical device?

>Other issues that may have had a bearing on all this include
>concern as to whether any USAF personnel had undertaken actions
>contrary to the Status of Forces Agreement and concerns about
>the fact that light beams were seen striking a certain area -
>one of several details Charles Halt left out of his memo to the

We have been discussing the statements of Buran, Burroughs,
Penniston, Chandler and Cabansag. Charles Halt's name does not
come up in connection with this.

>The various witnesses saw and experienced different things and
>reacted to them in different ways.

Exactly so. The above statements are very convincing as
independent accounts of the same real event for just this
reason. They are not so convincing, to me, as an orchestrated
fiction for the same reason. The deception seems far too subtle,
much more so than simply "leaving out some details".

>This, together with
>variations in the subsequent debriefings (and the way in which
>those concerned reacted to these debriefings), will also have
>had a bearing on what went into the statements and what was
>left out.

Such speculations would work to mitigate problemmatic
inconsistencies between testimonies. But it is not inconsistency
that creates a problem here. Such inconsistency as there is
seems very reasonable for independent accounts of the same
event, for the reasons you mention. What creates a problem for
the cover-story theory is the underlying common account so
convincingly borne witness to. The story of all the direct
witnesses, and also of Chandler, is that they approached to
within a moderate distance (estimated by one witness as 50
meters, a figure confirmed by Chandler as being the distance
reported by radio at the time) of some strange coloured lights
which Sgt Penniston was convinced were on a mechanical device
but which then vanished.

>I've discussed the Rendlesham Forest incident twice with Charles
>Halt in the last month. It's clear to me that a decision was
>taken to sanitize some of the accounts, with a view to raising
>the more sensitive issues in the subsequent investigation, once
>some indication of official reaction had been received. This
>strategy was undermined by the fundamentally flawed nature of
>the MoD's investigation.

If, as suggested, Cabansag was "concerned for his career" and/or
other nasty consequences because of adverse official reaction to
his story I would have expected him to make sure he knew what he
was signing.

>I don't have any definitive answers here, but the full story of
>the incident and what happened afterwards has yet to emerge.

Whilst this is just a subjective opinion, I'm not convinced that
the answer lies in further claims and speculations. I'll be
pleased if you can challenge the above misgivings, and I
certainly agree that the original case remains unresolved on the
basis of information available. But I feel a cold dread creeping
over me at the hint that I am expected to suspend judgment on
the shortcomings of the case, pending yet another layer of
revisionist disclosures and a "full story" yet to come, no doubt
involving another book, documentary and/or press conference.

Martin Shough

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