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The intelligence chief denies the existence of a threat

Added Mon, 27/09/2021
Дата публикации
Wed, 30/07/1952

WASHINGTON, July 29 - Air Force Headquarters dived into a trash can with broken dishes - the latest wave of"flying saucers". They called them "natural phenomena" and announced through high-ranking generals that from now on the Air Force will treat reports about disks with "adequate, but not insane" attention.

Puzzled by a new series of observations of mysterious glowing objects in the air over the capital and elsewhere, the Air Force called a press conference at the Pentagon to tell what information they have.

At the end of an hour and twenty minutes of exchange between a large group of reporters and the main cadets of the Air Force, Major General James A. Samford, the chief of intelligence, agreed with the following statement of his views:

  • The so-called "flying saucers" do not pose a threat to the United States.
  • None of the several thousand reports of the "saucer" verified by the Air Force over the past six years revealed the existence of any material flying object, except in cases where the report proceeded from the fact that an observer noticed a United States aircraft or missile and mistakenly accepted them. for something else.
  • There are no weapons in the arsenal of the United States, existing or being developed, that have unlimited speed and mass-characteristics inherent in many alleged "saucers".
  • The radar is capable of performing tricks for which it was not designed; so the human eye.

Speaking to the press in no way in a mocking mood, but, on the contrary, in a pleasant atmosphere of readiness to discuss everything they knew, Air Force officials said that they considered it the "duty" of the service to continue investigating reports about the saucer.

General Samford insisted, despite recent reports here from both experienced pilots and radar operators who saw "objects", that a great need for the study of the "saucer" is a measurement method. He pointed out that even trained pilots, whose word is not in doubt, are not able to correctly assess the composition of the fiery objects they report.

As a result of today's conference, a favorite theory has emerged, but, according to experts, it does not answer everything.

The fact is that with the existing weather here - hot and humid - there is something known as a temperature inversion. It was explained that this is the presence of a layer of colder air stretched between two hot layers. This condition can cause certain reflections of light both for the human eye and for the far from perfect radar screen, which was designed to detect solid objects.

For example, ground lights during periods of inverted temperature can be very well reflected in clouds as balls of light. These reflections could be caught by both pilots and ground operators of radar equipment, according to General Samford and a group of specialists whom he brought to the press conference.

This was reported three times in the last ten days, flying objects, some stationery, and others moving at different speeds were reported in the area of the capital.

The latest report came today from the radar operators of the Civil Aeronautics Administration at the National Airport, who said that their equipment detected many objects from 2: 30 to 6: 00. The representative said that up to twelve unidentified objects appeared on the radar screen. once, but "no visual observations were made". Consequently, he added, the nearby Andrews Air Force Base was not notified, and jet fighters were not sent to investigate.

General Samford's staff tried to explain the supposedly moving objects as observations of individual phenomena.

As an example of how ground objects or light can be reflected in clouds and mistakenly identified, one Air Force expert told about a pilot who almost crashed his plane into the ground while chasing an "object" that appeared on his plane's radar screen.

Air Force experts said that although they have recorded more than 1,000 suspected cases of "saucers" or other objects in recent years, only 20 percent of reports from reliable sources remained unexplained.

Remembering those signs in the sky that in one form or another date back to at least biblical times. General Samford said that one of the reasons for the "saucer" was undoubtedly a strong increase in anthropogenic activity in the air. He also referred to "nervousness" due to the fear of war and, without mentioning it, the desire of some people to seek publicity.

He also said that a trained Air Force pilot or an experienced radar operator who was assigned to chase "saucers" or identify them on his radar screen was also subjected to" curiosity irritation", which could lead to excessive attention.

General Samford, who was joined in the discussion by Major General Roger Ramey, the chief of the Air Force's operations department, said that he was satisfied not only that none of the" observations from the saucer " represented the flight of any vehicle, missile or anything else. but also the fact that the geographical picture of the observations did not represent anything significant.

General Samford explained that a large number of so-called "observations" around installations such as those of the Atomic Energy Commission are associated with the "sensitivity" of territories and personnel. According to him, it does not follow that reports from critical defensive areas were more accurate or reliable than reports received from a cornfield in Iowa.

It also turned out that the radar for many years caught on its screens "spots" created by other things other than airplanes.

Announcing that their investigation of the "saucer" phenomenon will continue, the Air Force announced that it is purchasing 200 relatively inexpensive cameras equipped with defraction gratings that, when focused on light phenomena, detect the light source.

The possibility of buying a special telescope with a wide-angle lens that could photograph large areas of the sky and detect the appearance of light phenomena is also being considered.


"Observations" are increasing here

New York, July 29 - The Air Raid Filtering Center here, the center for collecting information from observation posts in twenty-six counties of New York, reported today an increase in the detection of "unidentified aerial objects" compared to 139 posts. The district went on round-the-clock duty on July 14.

The headquarters of the eastern Air Defense Forces near Newburg, the commander of this and other centers, replied that strange objects were reported in the air in southwestern Indiana, Jersey City, Plainfield, New Jersey and Tarrytown over the past 24 hours.

"In the normal performance of the assigned task," the headquarters said, "he sends an interceptor fighter into the air" whenever unknown air objects are detected in his area with sufficient certainty to justify an interception attempt."


The investigation in Florida

Florida, July 29. (AP) - Navy officials said today that "we are thoroughly investigating" reports of a fiery object flying through the sky on Saturday evening. A destroyer escort was sent to sea, but the officers did not go into details.


"Rockets" over the Bahamas

Especially for THE NEW YORK TIMES

NASSAU, Bahamas, July 29. From a remote settlement here, where people have probably never heard of "flying saucers", a message came today that about two weeks ago a group of people saw flying objects"flying through the sky". They described them as silent, white and much faster than any aircraft, and called them guided missiles.


"Saucer" and "Ghost on the radar"


The mirages on the radaroscope, which marked the beginning of the last mass misconception about "flying saucers", is a phenomenon that became well known to the navy during the Second World War.

These deceptive "radar ghosts" forced warships to bombard the empty ocean, believing that they were shooting at the enemy. Sometimes they are produced by a layer of warm air, and yesterday it was noticed in scientific circles that such a layer of superheated air could have just arrived in Washington from political conventions in Chicago.

The effect of atmospheric inhomogeneities on radar waves was the subject of a special study during the war by the Wave Propagation Committee of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, whose chairman was Professor Donald H. Menzel, an astrophysicist at Harvard University.

The explanation of the widespread rumors and credulity of the myth of "flying saucers" should be sought, however, not in the field of physical sciences, but in the field of mass psychology. Regardless of what evidence can be presented to refute them, rumors will continue to spread for some time until the novelty disappears and the public takes up a new fantasy.


Fashion in fantasy

In fantasy, there is a fashion that depends on the time and seasons. In the 1920s, there was a Loch Ness monster in Scotland, which was "seen" by hundreds of people. In the gay nineties, newspapers were full of reports about a mysterious cigar-shaped " airship "that was allegedly" seen " in many parts of the country.

For some time, it was believed that the real secret of the so-called flying saucers was revealed by Dr. Urner Liddel, head of the nuclear physics department of the Office of Naval Research.

In February 1951, he announced that what were described as " flying saucers "were plastic unmanned sounding balloons with a diameter of one hundred feet, called"sky hooks". Balloons have been sent to an altitude of 20 miles since 1947 (the year when reports of "flying saucers" first appeared) in order to collect information about cosmic rays and the upper atmosphere.

Dr. Liddell and his scientific colleagues studied hundreds of reports about "flying saucers" and found that almost all of them came from sincerely mistaken people. The sunlight reflected by the plane, objects blown by the wind, the light on the weather balloon, the running light of the plane, the meteor, the planet Uranus in certain positions were what honest observers considered "plates".

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