Monthly Archives: September, 2010

House of Representatives pass compromise NASA Authorization Bill

We now interrupt our regularly scheduled esoteric programming to bring you some mainstream NASA stuff.

Yeah, I know, it’s “mainstream” NASA, which hardly brings any inspiration and “Never A Straight Answer” comes to mind.

But you know what? I still love rockets flaming off the launch pads and I had my old NASA picture books stored at my parents house until it burned down in 1993.

So sue me.

Anyway, I’ve been keeping track of this at Space Politics and this is the result:

Update 11:45 pm: The House did pass the bill in a recorded vote by well over the two-thirds margin needed: 304-118.

For about 45 minutes this evening the House debated S. 3729, the NASA authorization bill. Because the bill is taken up under suspension of the rules, the debate was relatively streamlined, with no opportunity for introducing amendments. Most of those speaking, including Reps. Bart Gordon (D-TN), Ralph Hall (R-TX), and Pete Olson (R-TX), were reluctantly in favor of the bill, saying it wasn’t perfect but it was better than none at all. Some of the claims bordered on (or perhaps were fully) hyperbolic: Rep. John Culberson (R-TX) claimed that if the House didn’t pass the bill, President Obama would succeed in shutting down the nation’s human spaceflight program by the end of the year.

A notable exception was Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ), chair of the House Science Committee’s space subcommittee, who spoke “in strong opposition” to the bill, calling it a “bad bill” that the House should vote down. Over the course of about seven minutes she laid out her issues with the bill, ranging from a lack of funding specified for an additional shuttle mission to a heavy-lift launch vehicle “designed by our colleagues” in the Senate as opposed to engineers, to its support of “would be” commercial providers.

The speaker pro tem declared at the end of the debate that the yeas had won the voice vote, but after a bit of an awkward pause, Giffords formally requested a recorded (roll call) vote. That will take place later tonight; perhaps much later, as the House is now moving on to debate the continuing resolution to fund the government after Thursday. The vote will take place tonight, though, as Majority Leader Steny Hoyer announced this evening thatthe House will adjourn after tonight’s votes until November 15th, after the mid-term elections. Note that under suspension of the rules the bill will need a two-thirds majority to pass.

When the Obamanator’$ FY2011 budget came out this past February 1st, there was no heavy lift rocket proposed and Bu$hco’s Project Constellation was going to get the axe. Instead launches to the International Space Station was to be handled by private firms like Boeing, SpaceX, Sierra Nevada Corp. and Orbital Sciences Corporation and robotic missions were going to the Moon and the asteroids

Well, the ensuing months a battle between Obama’s space budget supporters and the entrenched interests in the “space states”; Utah, Alabama, Louisiana, Texas, Florida and Colorado turned into a brawl and wrestling match in a muddy street. It was no holds barred and turned extremely ugly at times. It was also great theater.

The compromise I must admit is a true compromise. It gives a shuttle derived heavy lift launch vehicle back to NASA’s centers in the above listed states to build by 2016 and it gives funding (although reduced) to kick start the commercial space launch industry and returns funding to the defunct technology programs and the robotic precursor interplanetary missions.

But at a starting budget of $19 billion and ending at $19.9 billion in 2013, I seriously doubt that heavy lift rocket will be even off from the drawing board and these robot missions will be even launched. The commercial launches might be launched by then because we need them to work, the political pressure to stop buying the Russian Soyuz transports by an increasingly conservative government will be great.

In the end, the bill is what it is and Mr. Obama will probably sign it into law within another month, end of battle for the time being.

Next is Appropriations by either a lame-duck Congress or a new, possibly more Conservative Congress at the beginning of 2011.

That oughtta be fun, LOL!

The debate over the NASA bill, and its passage

Rectangular Texas UFO

From a MUFON report via;

Two Texas women pulled their vehicle over at 8:45 p.m. on September 26, 2010, to watch a rectangular-shaped object floating in the sky, according to testimony from the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) witness reporting database.

“It was very dark in color when we saw the underside of it,” the reporting witness stated. “Like that of a stealth aircraft. It was almost rectangular in shapewith one corner leading the way. It passed silently over us, speeding up as it passed and sending a few faint pulses of light.”

While they ruled out typical aircrafts, they report that this object was “more graceful than any helicopter.”

No town name was mentioned in the public portion of the MUFON report, but the witness does state that they were “heading east on Stassney from 35.” Three images of the object were submitted with the report – Image # 1Image # 2, and Image #3.

The following is the unedited and as yet uninvestigated report filed with MUFON. Please keep in mind that most UFO reports can be explained as something natural or man made. IfTexas MUFON State Director Steve Hudgeonsinvestigates and reports back on this case, I will release an update. Please report UFO activity

TX, September 26, 2010 – Bright white light that dimmed to red and passed silently over.MUFON Case # 25583.

Between 8:45-9:00 roughly, I was riding in the car with a girlfriend of mine. We were heading east on stassney from 35. I saw to my right, over the city, a bright light that appeared to be floating. It was brighter than any plane I’d ever seen. I pointed out to my friend who was driving and could only catch glimpses of it as per trees, but noticed immediately that it was too far away to shine as brightly any typical aircraft.

I considered shortly that it may be a helicopter with a spotlight, but it was a very well balanced light source that shone like a prism, not a spotlight.

We pulled into a left turn lane and stared at it, where we watched for about one minute. I was only able to take one photo from this point, my camera would not cooperate. We turned, pulled the car over and quickly jumped out.

The aircraft hovered for another two minutes or so while we repeated our bewilderment to each other in the street. “what is that? No way”, “that’s a UFO, this is incredible”, over and over. I snapped two more photos. My camera was responding slowly and I gave up on taking photos to pay better attention to the aircraft, but the two photos were taken when it dimmed it’s light to a red shade and moved toward us.

More graceful than any helicopter. This is when I gave up taking photos and watched. It passed above us heading southwest.

It was very dark in color when we saw the underside of it. Like that of a stealth aircraft. It was almost rectangular in shape with one corner leading the way. It passed silently over us, speeding up as it passed and sending a few faint pulses of light. I don’t know what to think, but I’ve encountered people in this town that I’ve felt absolutely zero human connection with. I don’t know what to think about that.

I’ve seen mysterious lights in the sky before but never anything like this, and I had a close friend by my side that saw it all. Bizarre. I’m a 22 year old white female from Florida, living in Austin just over A Year. Let me know if this occurrence rings any bells.

Rectangular UFOs are popular lately, the ones they see in China are rectangular (some folks surmise those are hoaxed).

I wonder what it means that the witnesses are seeing hard, geometrical shapes in the sky (triangles, rectangles)?

A technical, mechanical archetype feedback?

Rectangular UFO over Texas reported as ‘more graceful than helicopter’

hat tip

More UFOs and Nuclear Missile Bases

Yesterday in Washington D.C. there was a meeting of former military personnel who used to work at secret nuclear missile launch sites.

And their reason for meeting? To let the public know that UFOs (their versions/opinions of what UAPs are) might be tampering with the nuclear defences of the West in the US and the UK:

Six retired officers and one former non-commissioned officer claim to have gathered witness testimonies from more than 120 military personnel revealing the infiltration of nuclear sites by aliens as recently as 2003.

Captain Robert Salas, a former Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Launch officer, said he was on duty during one missile disruption incident at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana in 1967.

“An object came over and hovered directly over the site,” he said.

“The missiles shut down – 10 Minuteman missiles. And the same thing happened at another site a week later. There’s a strong interest in our missiles by these objects, wherever they come from.

“I personally think they’re not from planet Earth.”

He said he was ordered to never discuss it: “The USAir Force is lying about the national security implications of unidentified aerial objects at nuclear bases and we can prove it.”

Colonel Charles Halt said he watched Unidentified Flying Objects directing beams of light into RAF Bentwaters airbase near Ipswich and heard on the radio that they landed in the nuclear weapons storage area.

Col Halt said: “I believe that the security services of both the United States and the United Kingdom have attempted – both then and now – to subvert the significance of what occurred at RAF Bentwaters by the use of well-practised methods of disinformation.”

The group of officers said they would distribute declassified government documents on Monday that would prove there had been alien interference at nuclear weapons sites stretching back to 1948.

Now I don’t know if UFOs are actually ‘alien’ craft, my opinion has changed on this on and off for many years (yeah, I’m kind of wishy-washy) and I don’t know if these people are credible witnesses, but I will tell you I’ll trust a veteran’s word more than I’ll trust other people’s.

For more on UFOs and nuclear missile bases go to researcher Robert Hasting’s site.

Aliens are sabotaging British and US nuclear missiles, US military pilots claim

hat tip

More Chinese UFOs

The Chinese have a different take on UFOs; they call them UFOs. No mention of little green men, grays or any of that nonsense.

From Technorati:

China’s People’s Daily Online, the official news agency of the Central Committee of the Communist Party in China (CPC), is reporting that two students photographed a UFO above the city of Pingyao September 22 while taking nightscape photos during the 10th Pingyao International Photography Festival.

Over a 40-minute period, the students snapped roughly 200 pictures of the UFO, which they described as “a sphere with two flickering columns on its two sides,” but which could not be seen with the naked eye.

The only published image, shown here, does not impress. Grainy and indistinct, it’s typical of the vast majority of UFO photos.

But the real story isn’t the photo. It’s People’s Daily’s persistent willingness to report UFO sightings without flip comment, specious hypothesis, de rigueur debunker counterpoint, or meteorological speculation.

The People’s Daily headline is straightforward: “UFO photographed over ancient Chinese city. ” Not “Purported UFO…” Not even “Suspected UFO…”

There’s no reference to Little Green Men and no evidence of any invitation extended to air traffic controllers, military spokespeople or government officials to make official non-statements.

It’s just so … so … Un-American.

Maybe to the Chinese UFOs are just things to be dealt with on a practical basis? But there’s generally no news about their military jets chasing these objects all over the place.

Apparently the Chinese have no lore about alien abductions?

UFO photographed over ancient Chinese city

Chinese Media To U.S. Regarding UFO Coverage: Grow A Pair

hat tip Divided By Infinity

When I read ‘Divided By Infinity’ eight years ago, I was in the ‘singularity’ stage of my sci-fi reading.

Authors such as Greg Bear, David Brin, Greg Benford, Ian MacDonald, Iain Banks and even Michael Crichton and Stephen Coonts filled my bookcase during the late ’90s, early ’00s. The more technology it had, the better.

But when I came across ‘Divided By Infinity’ in the Best Science Fiction of 1998 edited by Gardner Dozois in 2002, the metaphysical side of me was piqued and I never looked back since.

To me, the quantum world described by Hugh Everett III is forever linked to the philosophical Universe thanks to this little tale of self exploration.



Divided by Infinity


We hope you enjoy this reprint, originally published in Starlight 2,edited by Patrick Nielsen Hayden, Tor Books, 1998.


In the year after Lorraine’s death I contemplated suicide six times. Contemplated it seriously, I mean: six times sat with the fat bottle of Clonazepam within reaching distance, six times failed to reach for it, betrayed by some instinct for life or disgusted by my own weakness.

I can’t say I wish I had succeeded, because in all likelihood I did succeed, on each and every occasion. Six deaths. No, not just six. An infinite number.

Times six.

There are greater and lesser infinities.

But I didn’t know that then.

* * *

I was only sixty years old.

I had lived all my life in the city of Toronto. I worked thirty-five years as a senior accountant for a Great Lakes cargo brokerage called Steamships Forwarding, Ltd., and took an early retirement in 1997, not long before Lorraine was diagnosed with the pancreatic cancer that killed her the following year. Back then she worked part-time in a Harbord Street used-book shop called Finders, a short walk from the university district, in a part of the city we both loved.

I still loved it, even without Lorraine, though the gloss had dimmed considerably. I lived there still, in a utility apartment over an antique store, and I often walked the neighborhood—down Spadina into the candy-bright intricacies of Chinatown, or west to Kensington, foreign as a Bengali marketplace, where the smell of spices and ground coffee mingled with the stink of sun-ripened fish.

Usually I avoided Harbord Street. My grief was raw enough without the provocation of the bookstore and its awkward memories. Today, however, the sky was a radiant blue, and the smell of spring blossoms and cut grass made the city seem threatless. I walked east from Kensington with a mesh bag filled with onions and Havarti cheese, and soon enough found myself on Harbord Street, which had moved another notch upscale since the old days, more restaurants now, fewer macrobiotic shops, the palm readers and bead shops banished for good and all.

But Finders was still there. It was a tar-shingled Victorian house converted for retail, its hanging sign faded to illegibility. A three-legged cat slumbered on the cracked concrete stoop.

I went in impulsively, but also because the owner, an old man by the name of Oscar Ziegler, had put in an appearance at Lorraine’s funeral the previous year, and I felt I owed him some acknowledgment. According to Lorraine, he lived upstairs and seldom left the building.

The bookstore hadn’t changed on the inside, either, since the last I had seen it. I didn’t know it well (the store was Lorraine’s turf and as a rule I had left her to it), but there was no obvious evidence that more than a year had passed since my last visit. It was the kind of shop with so much musty stock and so few customers that it could have survived only under the most generous circumstances—no doubt Ziegler owned the building and had found a way to finesse his property taxes. The store was not a labor of love, I suspected, so much as an excuse for Ziegler to indulge his pack-rat tendencies.

It was a full nest of books. The walls were pineboard shelves, floor to ceiling. Free-standing shelves divided the small interior into box canyons and dimly-lit hedgerows. The stock was old and, not that I’m any judge, largely trivial, forgotten jazz-age novels and belles-lettres, literary flotsam.

I stepped past cardboard boxes from which more books overflowed, to the rear of the store, where a cash desk had been wedged against the wall. This was where, for much of the last five years of her life, Lorraine had spent her weekday afternoons. I wondered whether the book dust was carcinogenic. Maybe she had been poisoned by the turgid air, by the floating fragments of ivoried Frank Yerby novels, vagrant molecules of Peyton Place and The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit.

Someone else sat behind the desk now, a different woman, younger than Lorraine, though not what anyone would call young. A baby-boomer in denim overalls and a pair of eyeglasses that might have better suited the Hubble Space Telescope. Shoulder-length hair, gone gray, and an ingratiating smile, though there was something faintly haunted about the woman.

“Hi,” she said amiably. “Anything I can help you find?”

“Is Oscar Ziegler around?”

Her eyes widened. “Uh, Mr. Ziegler? He’s upstairs, but he doesn’t usually like to be disturbed. Is he expecting you?”

She seemed astonished at the possibility that Ziegler would be expecting anyone, or that anyone would want to see Ziegler. Maybe it was a bad idea. “No,” I said. “I just dropped by on the chance . . . you know, my wife used to work here.”

“I see.”

“Please don’t bother him. I’ll just browse for a while.”

“Are you a book collector, or—?”

“Hardly. These days I read the newspaper. The only books I’ve kept are old paperbacks. Not the sort of thing Mr. Ziegler would stock.”

“You’d be surprised. Mysteries? Chandler, Hammett, John Dickson Carr? Because we have some firsts over by the stairs. . . .”

“I used to read some mysteries. Mostly, though, it was science fiction I liked.”

“Really? You look more like a mystery reader.”

“There’s a look?”

She laughed. “Tell you what. Science fiction? We got a box of paperbacks in last week. Right over there, under the ladder. Check it out, and I’ll tell Mr. Ziegler you’re here. Uh—“

“My name is Keller. Bill Keller. My wife was Lorraine.”

She held out her hand. “I’m Deirdre. Just have a look; I’ll be back in a jiff.”

I wanted to stop her but didn’t know how. She went through a bead curtain and up a dim flight of stairs while I pulled a leathery cardboard box onto a chair and prepared for some dutiful time-killing. Certainly I didn’t expect to find anything I wanted, though I would probably have to buy something as the price of a courtesy call, especially if Ziegler was coaxed out of his lair to greet me. But what I told Deirdre was true; though I had been an eager reader in my youth, I hadn’t bought more than an occasional softcover since 1970. Fiction is a young man’s pastime. I had ceased to be curious about other people’s lives, much less other worlds.

Still, the box was full of forty-year-old softcover books, Ace and Ballantine paperbacks mainly, and it was nice to see the covers again, the Richard Powers abstracts, translucent, bubbles on infinite plains, or Jack Gaughan sketches, angular and insectile. Titles rich with key words: Time, Space, Worlds, Infinity. Once I had loved this sort of thing.

And then, amongst these faded jewels, I found something I did notexpect—

And another. And another.

* * *

The bead curtain parted and Ziegler entered the room.

He was a bulky man, but he moved with the exaggerated caution of the frail. A plastic tube emerged from his nose, was taped to his cheek with a dirty bandaid and connected to an oxygen canister slung from his shoulder. He hadn’t shaved for a couple of days. He wore what looked like a velveteen frock coat draped over a t-shirt and a pair pinstriped pajama-bottoms. His hair, what remained of it, was feathery and white. His skin was the color of thrift-shop Tupperware.

Despite his appearance, he gave me a wide grin.

“Mr. Ziegler,” I said. “I’m Bill Keller. I don’t know if you remember—”

He thrust his pudgy hand forward. “Of course! No need to explain. Terrible about Lorraine. I think of her often.” He turned to Deirdre, who emerged from the curtain behind him. “Mr. Keller’s wife . . .” He drew a labored breath. “Died last year.”

“I’m sorry,” Deirdre said.

“She was . . . a wonderful woman. Friendly by nature. A joy. Of course, death isn’t final . . . we all go on, I believe, each in his own way. . . .”

There was more of this—enough that I regretted stopping by—but I couldn’t doubt Ziegler’s sincerity. Despite his intimidating appearance there was something almost willfully childlike about him, a kind of embalmed innocence, if that makes any sense.

He asked how I had been and what I had been doing. I answered as cheerfully as I could and refrained from asking after his own health. His cheeks reddened as he stood, and I wondered if he shouldn’t be sitting down. But he seemed to be enjoying himself. He eyed the five slender books I’d brought to the cash desk.

“Science fiction!” he said. “I wouldn’t have taken you for a science fiction reader, Mr. Keller.”

(Deirdre glanced at me: Told you so!)

“I haven’t been a steady reader for a long time,” I said. “But I found some interesting items.”

“The good old stuff,” Ziegler gushed. “The pure quill. Does it strike you, Mr. Keller, that we live every day in the science fiction of our youth?”

“I hadn’t noticed.”

“There was a time when science seemed so sterile. It didn’t yield up the wonders we had been led to expect. Only a bleak, lifeless solar system. . . a half-dozen desert worlds, baked or frozen, take your pick, and the gas giants. . . great roaring seas of methane and ammonia. . . .”

I nodded politely.

“But now!” Ziegler exclaimed. “Life on Mars! Oceans under Europa! Comets plunging into Jupiter—!”

“I see what you mean.”

“And here on Earth—the human genome, cloned animals, mind-altering drugs! Computer networks! Computer viruses!” He slapped his thigh. “I have a Teflon hip, if you can imagine such a thing!”

“Pretty amazing,” I agreed, though I hadn’t thought much about any of this.

“Back when we read these books, Mr. Keller, when we read Heinlein or Simak or Edmond Hamilton, we longed to immerse ourselves in the strange . . . the outré. And now—well—here we are!” He smiled breathlessly and summed up his thesis. “Immersed in the strange. All it takes is time. Just . . . time. Shall I put these in a bag for you?”

He bagged the books without looking at them. When I fumbled out my wallet, he raised his hand.

“No charge. This is for Lorraine. And to thank you for stopping by.”

I couldn’t argue . . . and I admit I didn’t want to draw his attention to the paperbacks, in the petty fear that he might notice how unusual they were and refuse to part with them. I took the paper bag from his parchment hand, feeling faintly guilty.

“Perhaps you’ll come back,” he said.

“I’d like to.”

“Anytime,” Ziegler said, inching towards his bead curtain and the musty stairway behind it, back into the cloying dark. “Anything you’re looking for, I can help you find it.”

* * *

Crossing College Street, freighted with groceries, I stepped into the path of a car, a yellow Hyundai racing a red light. The driver swerved around me, but it was a near thing. The wheel wells brushed my trouser legs. My heart stuttered a beat.

. . . and I died, perhaps, a small infinity of times.

Probabilities collapse. I become increasingly unlikely.

“Immersed in the strange,” Ziegler had said.

But had I ever wanted that? Really wanted that?

* * *

“Be careful,” Lorraine told me one evening in the long month before she died. Amazingly, she had seemed to think of it as my tragedy, not hers. “Don’t despise life.”

Difficult advice.

Did I “despise life”? I think I did not; that is, there were times when the world seemed a pleasant enough place, times when a cup of coffee and a morning in the sun seemed a good enough reason to continue to draw breath. I remained capable of smiling at babies. I was even able to look at an attractive young woman and feel a response more immediate than nostalgia.

But I missed Lorraine terribly, and we had never had children, neither of us had any close living relations or much in the way of friends; I was unemployed and unemployable, confined forevermore within the contracting walls of my pension and our modest savings . . . all the joy and much of the simple structure of my life had been leeched away, and the future looked like more of the same, a protracted fumble toward the grave.

If anything postponed the act of suicide it wasn’t courage or principle but the daily trivia. I would kill myself (I decided more than once), but not until after the news . . . not until I paid the electric bill . . . not until I had taken my walk.

Not until I solved the mystery I’d brought home from Finders.

I won’t describe the books in detail. They looked more or less like others of their kind. What was strange about them was that I didn’t recognize them, although this was a genre (paperback science fiction of the 1950s and ’60s) I had once known in intimate detail.

The shock was not just unfamiliarity, since I might have missed any number of minor works by minor writers; but these were major novels by well-known names, not retitled works or variant editions. A single example: I sat down that night with a book called The Stone Pillow, by a writer whose identity any science fiction follower would instantly recognize. It was a Signet paperback circa 1957, with a cover by the artist Paul Lehr in the period style. According to the credit slug, the story had been serialized in Astounding in 1946. The pages were browned at the margins; the glued spine was brittle as bone china. I handled the book carefully, but I couldn’t resist reading it, and insofar as I was able to judge, it was a plausible example of the late author’s well-known style and habits of thought. I enjoyed it a great deal and went to bed convinced of its authenticity. Either I had missed it, somehow—in the days when not missing such things meant a great deal to me—or it had slipped out of memory. No other explanation presented itself.

One such item wouldn’t have worried me. But I had brought home four more volumes equally inexplicable.

Chalk it up to age, I thought. Or worse. Senility. Alzheimer’s. Either way, a bad omen.

Sleep was elusive.

The next logical step might have been to see a doctor. Instead, the next morning I thumbed through the yellow pages for a used-book dealer who specialized in period science fiction. After a couple of calls I reached a young man named Niemand who offered to evaluate the books if I brought them to him that afternoon.

I told him I’d be there by one.

If nothing else, it was an excuse to prolong my life one more interminable day.

* * *

Divided By Infinity

Mexican Bicentennial UFOs

When our southern neighbor Mexico celebrated their bicentennial last week, their military fly-overs had some unexpected company.

Contributing Editor Prof. Ana Luisa Cid has sent us impressive images of unidentified flying objects reported during Mexico’s military parade conmemorating our southern neighbor’s bicentennial. On 15 September 1810, Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla proclaimed Mexico’s independence from Spain — a goal not achieved until 1821.

Mexico and the other Latin American nations historically have had more UFO activity than the US, and no one knows why.

Maybe they throw better parties?

Inexplicata – Mexico: UFOs at the Military Parade

UFOs and Nuclear Weapon Sites

UFOs and nuclear weapons sites is a subject I’ve come across the past few years and probably to my detriment I passed it by without reading more about it. Of course I’ve read and heard the name Robert Hastings come up more than once and he’s had more than one interview on several of the podcasts I listen to, Paracast being the main one.

From what little I understand, over the past sixty some odd years, UFOs buzz and scan nuclear weapons sites (or have buzzed and scanned), shooting out beams of light. They sometimes trigger weapon count-downs, or in alot of cases, stop or interrupt count-downs for whatever reason. Possibly to show they have the means to do so at any time they wish.

Now there are retired military personnel who worked at these sites over the years stepping forward to tell their stories about UFOs and how they interacted with these nuclear missile sites; stopping and starting countdowns, messing with the workings of the missiles and sometimes messing with the military personnel themselves:

Consider it the second barrel of the double-barreled shotgun, or the “two” of the proverbial “one-two punch”; the first being Leslie Kean’s new book, UFOs: Generals, Pilots and Government Officials Go On the Record and now the upcoming press conference being co-hosted by researcher Robert Hastings and former missleer (Minuteman I launch officer – Deputy Missile Combat Crew Commander) Bob Salas.

Hastings writes:

“Declassified U.S. government documents and the testimony of more than 120 former or retired military personnel have established, beyond doubt, the reality of ongoing UFO incursions at American nuclear weapons sites. While most of the incidents apparently involved mere surveillance, in a few cases a significant number of nuclear missiles suddenly and simultaneously malfunctioned, just as USAF Security Policemen reported seeing disc-shaped craft hovering nearby.

On September 27th, during a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. , six former U.S. Air Force officers and one former enlisted man will reveal their own dramatic experiences involving UFOs at nuclear weapons sites. One of them, former Minuteman missile launch officer Robert Salas, is co-hosting the event with me. We hope to draw worldwide media attention to this vital issue by presenting the testimony of highly-credible individuals who witnessed extraordinary encounters which have officially been kept secret for decades.

Five of these veterans were rigorously screened by the Air Force and authorized to launch or otherwise work with Weapons of Mass Destruction. Of the remaining two, one headed-up a USAF communications center where he learned of UFO activity at ICBM sites; the other witnessed a UFO directing laser-like beams of light down into a major military base—including the nuclear weapons depot, according to the radio chatter he overheard.

At long last, all of these witnesses are coming forward to say that, as unbelievable as it may seem to some, UFOs have long monitored and sometimes tampered with our nukes. If ever there were a front page story, this is it.

At the press conference, Mr. Salas and I will be asking simple questions: Why do UFOs continue to appear at nuclear weapons sites, decade after decade? What might these incursions indicate about the intentions and goals of those who presumably pilot these craft? Why has the U.S. government chosen to keep the American public, and people everywhere, in the dark about these dramatic developments? Hasn´t the time come to speak the truth?

The purpose of this short article is to introduce, in alphabetical order, the individuals who will participate in the upcoming event:

Dwynne Arneson, retired USAF Lieutenant Colonel, was the Officer-in-Charge at the Malmstrom AFB, Montana, Communications Center in 1967, when he read a classified message concerning the sighting of a UFO hovering over one of the base´s Minuteman I Launch Facilities (silos), just as several missiles mysteriously malfunctioned. Although Arneson can not recall the designation of the missile “flight” mentioned, researchers now know that two UFO-related full-flight shutdowns—involving 10 missiles each—took place at Malmstrom in March of that year, at Echo and Oscar Flights.

Bruce Fenstermacher, retired USAF Captain, was a Minuteman III missile launch officer (Missile Combat Crew Commander) stationed at F.E. Warren AFB, Wyoming in 1976. His Security Alert Team reported a cigar-shaped UFO hovering low over his launch capsule, then ignored a direct order to pursue the object after it raced away and began moving from missile to missile in his flight. Fenstermacher´s squadron´s missile crews were briefed about the incident and told never to discuss it with anyone.

Charles Halt, retired USAF Colonel, was the Deputy Base Commander at a joint Anglo/American airbase, RAF Bentwaters, in 1980. Among other events, Halt observed a disc-shaped UFO directing beams of light down into the base, at one point near the nuclear Weapons Storage Area (WSA), according to several Security Policemen on duty there.

Robert Jamison, former USAF Captain, was a Minuteman I missile targeting officer (Combat Targeting Team Commander) at Malmstrom AFB in 1967. He helped re-start the stricken missiles at Oscar Flight, where Bob Salas was on alert duty at the time of the full-flight shutdown. Jamison says that his team was explicitly briefed about a UFO-connection with the incident before going into the field, thereby corroborating Salas´ report of a UFO being sighted as it hovered over the Oscar Launch Control Facility at the time of the malfunctions.

Patrick McDonough, retired U.S. Navy Intelligence Command Master Chief, was a U.S. Air Force geodetic surveyor at Malmstrom AFB in 1966. A disc-shaped UFO briefly hovered some 300-ft. above his team as they worked at a newly-constructed missile silo. They fled the scene, rolling their truck in the process. A Montana State Policeman responding to the accident told the team that some 20 UFO reports had been made that night by civilians living in the area.

Jerry Nelson, former USAF 1st Lieutenant, was an Atlas-F missile launch officer (Deputy Missile Combat Crew Commander) at Walker AFB, New Mexico in 1964. His security guards reported a UFO silently hovering over the Site 9 launch capsule on half-a-dozen occasions over the period of a month or so. The object directed a spotlight onto the missile, frightening the guards. Nelson´s reports to the base command post were seemingly ignored at the time, however, evidence has come to light suggesting that the incidents were classified Top Secret.

Bob Salas, former USAF Captain, was a Minuteman I launch officer (Deputy Missile Combat Crew Commander) at Malmstrom´s Oscar Flight, on March 24, 1967, when all of his missiles dropped-off alert status—malfunctioned—just as one of his guards reported a UFO hovering over the Launch Control Facility´s security fence gate. Salas and his missile commander, now-retired Col. Fred Meiwald, were debriefed about the incident and asked to signed non-disclosure statements by an agent from the Office of Special Investigations (OSI). Meiwald has confirmed that, shortly after the malfunctions occurred, a two-man Security Alert Team was sent out to one of the flight´s missile silos to investigate a tripped alarm there. Upon approaching the site, the team saw a second (or the same) UFO hovering near it, whereupon they became frightened and quickly returned to the Launch Control Facility.”

“To present their information in the most credible manner possible, Mr. Salas and I have asked each of the press conference participants to sign legal affidavits attesting to their experiences. Those will be posted at this website following the event.”

Given the number of these retired folks stating that they’ve experienced anomalous events while stationed at these bases is interesting because it does give their stories some credence. And given the fact that military folk are trained observers (I can attest to this), it gives them further credibility.

My question however is this; “Why would aliens mess with our land based nukes?”

I would see it if these weapons were small, aircraft loaded types that could be used on hard to access or mobile targets.

But ones designed to wipe out cities?

Well, if they could control them, it wouldn’t take much to wipe out the primitive’s cities and not waste your own reserves.

But then you would have to clean up the radioactivity, fallout and poisons if you wanted to use the planet’s resources.

It’s still alot of work.


Retired Military Personnel To Confirm UFO Incursions at American Nuclear Weapons Sites

hat tip

Philip K. Dick – A Day In The Afterlife

For all of you PKD fans out there, here’s a treat.

While trolling (trawling?) for posting material this a.m., I ran across a little Twitter announcement on Greg Taylor’s Daily Grail site with a link to a site that was showing a Philip K. Dick documentary on the BBC. (here)

Now, after doing some re-reading of PKD’s classics and doing some research on the man himself, in my opinion he wasn’t croggled on drugs all of the time. But with this caveat, he did his fair share during the 1950s and 1960s and he was trying to stay clean during the writing of his Exegesis, although he had a doctor’s prescription for pain medication for headaches. Whether that had an influence on his writing the Exegesis is conjecture at best.

But who cares?

The Exegesis remains one of PKD’s most prolific work and at least three of his sci-fi classics stem from it’s sibling, VALIS; The Divine Invasion , The Owl in Daylight , and Transmigration of Timothy Archer .

A Day In The Afterlife Part 1


A Day In The Afterlife Part 2


A Day In The Afterlife Part 3


A Day In The Afterlife Part 4


A Day In The Afterlife Part 5


A Day In The Afterlife Part 6



Beachcombing: Dowsing For Submarines

When it comes to legitimate anomaly research, the InnerTubes are a hard place to find such gems. It takes twice as long to sift through the shit, flotsam and chaff as it does to do the Googling (I think the Google has attained consciousness and throws out distractions most of the time).

But I have found one gem in Dr. Beachcombing’s Bizarre History Blog and it’s cooler than a ham sandwich in dry ice. Today he’s posted a story about a dowser by the name of Verne Cameron who had a possible bad experience with the US Navy.

I never had a real bad experience with the Navy when I was in the Marines many years ago, but then again I couldn’t locate every submarine in the Fleet either:

Beachcombing, in his hoarding way, has been storing up references to the military use of dowsing over the past months: indeed, he has already posted on the question of British dowsing for machine guns in the Second World War and hopes to come soon to the fraught question of dowsing for land mines this fall.

But what about dowsing for submarines? Beachcombing is confused. Does the dowser just get a rowing boat or a passing destroyer and drift? In fact, it seems that things are much easier than this. The experienced quester needs only a map and a pendulum or finder of some description.

Enter, from the left stage, Verne Cameron (1896-1970), a legendary dowser: Cameron was the inventor of the Aurameter or Water Compass that is still dowsing in dowsing circles.

In his long career Cameron was also contacted by the US navy. The letter, dated 18 March 1959, from Vice Admiral Maurice E. Curtis has thankfully been preserved for posterity and for those citizens who enjoy getting antsy about how their tax dollars are spent.

(Nielsen 51) I am advised you believe you may be able to tell the location of all submarines in the world’s waters – and their nationalities [Beachcombing loves this bit] – by a technique which is called ‘Map Dowsing’. It has been suggested you be given an opportunity to confirm your ability on the subject of submarine detection and location at a naval establishment close to you.

Please be assured I should welcome a demonstration by you at a place of your choice on the West Coast.

If you will communicate with me about your itinerary for the next month or so and your choice of a place where you can demonstrate this ability I shall be pleased to arrange for a test.

This certainly sounds authentic: the pinched military tone and then the way in which poor Cameron is held up for examination like a dead and mutilated mouse in a pair of fireside tongs. However, Beachcombing has not found any trace of this Vice Admiral Maurice in an admittedly superficial search.

Story has it – and here again Beachcombing has no good source to offer his readers – that Cameron amazed the audience by identifying every single US submarine on a world map. He then went on to identify every single Soviet submarine. He was susequently sent home and heard nothing else from the navy, discovering later in his life that he could not leave the US – he wanted to go and dowse in South Africa – as he had been deemed a security risk.

There are several fist size holes in this story. Beachcombing cannot credit that, in 1959, in the deadliest phase in the Cold War, anyone who could identify every US submarine on a map of the world would have been allowed to leave the room with a pulse, never mind return home and be left in peace with their Water Compass. As to finding every Russian submarine on the map, how did the US brass even know where ‘all’ these submarines were?

These kinds of military-civilian tests, do though, provide fertile grounds for misunderstanding, especially if Mr Cameron was told something non-committal and polite along the lines of ‘Well, Mr Cameron these are certainly interesting results, we might well be in touch.’ If this had occurred in Beachcombing’s own biography he could certainly have turned that into finding every American and every Soviet submarine on the map in the space of, say, two years. And that is even before the story was told at second hand…

As to Verne’s failed trip to South Africa Beachcombing would be curious to know (i) if Cameron travelled anywhere else abroad and (ii) whether there was any other reason to limit Cameron’s travel rights (politics etc…).

Fascinating story is it not?

Most folks have a tough time believing that water dowsing is possible, but we have a fellow who could locate military objects under the depths of the ocean!

Dowsing For Submarines

UFO Casebook: Silver Object in Colorado

It’s hard to get decent pics of UFOs now-a-days, but I found these gems on UFO Casebook.

What do you think? Blimp? Dirigible? Alien spaceship? US military black project?

You be the judges!


I looked up and noticed an odd-shaped object moving slowly from a westerly direction moving easterly. It was high in the sky, and was quite a long distance from my vantage point, but I could tell immediately that it was not an aircraft.

There were no wings or helicopter blades and there was no sound.

My first thought was that it was some sort of balloon, but it didn’t resemble balloon shapes that I’m familiar with. After moving slowly eastward for a time, it stopped and hovered above my head for perhaps a minute or so.

I always carry a small camera with me so I pulled it out and snapped a couple of photos zooming to the maximum that this camera is capable of (about 5 x). I wasn’t sure that the pictures would turn out since it was difficult to zero in on the image with the camera’s viewfinder.

After a minute or so the object drifted behind a small cloud. I watched for several minutes thinking that it would pass through the cloud and become visible again. After it vanished behind the cloud I never saw it again.

My initial reaction was that this was an object that is not commonly seen, at least in my experience, and it definitely piqued my curiosity.

I was quite surprised to discover that the photos captured the object fairly well, especially the second photo. When zeroing in on the object with my computer’s software I was very surprised to see that it was shaped like a dirigible or torpedo, but it seems too small to be a blimp or similar type aircraft.

It also appears to have a shiny, metallic skin that reflects sunlight. The fact that it stopped and hovered for awhile also seems a bit strange since the cloud next to it was moving slowly with the prevailing wind.

After viewing the photos on my computer I felt a sense of mystery and intrigue and am really anxious to see if there’s some sort of conventional explanation for this sighting.

I suppose it could be some sort of weather or scientific research balloon and I intend to do some follow-up to see whether or not that is a plausible explanation. I do find it especially strange that the object did not appear again after drifting behind the cloud.


Unknown, Silver Object Photographed over Colorado