Mystery of Roswell spaceship crash still intrigues people

The following article was published in “The San Francisco Chronicle”, 16th August, 2004

Ten years after the U.S. Air Force closed its books on the claim that a UFO crashed in Roswell, N.M., in 1947, a top Democratic Party figure wants to reopen the investigation into the cosmic legend.

Despite denials by federal officials, many UFO buffs cherish the notion that in early summer of 1947, a flying saucer crashed in rural Roswell, scattering alien bodies and saucer debris across the terrain.

Now Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico, who chaired the recent Democratic convention in Boston, says in his foreword to a new book that “the mystery surrounding this crash has never been adequately explained _ not by independent investigators, and not by the U.S. government. … There are as many theories as there are official explanations.

“Clearly, it would help everyone if the U.S. government disclosed everything it knows,” says Richardson, who served as Energy secretary under President Bill Clinton. “The American people can handle the truth _ no matter how bizarre or mundane. … With full disclosure and our best scientific investigation, we should be able to find out what happened on that fateful day in July 1947.”

The passage appears in a paperback titled “The Roswell Dig Diaries,” published in collaboration with TV’s SciFi Channel by Pocket Books, a division of Simon & Schuster. The “dig” of the title refers to an archaeological dig at the supposed crash site.

A Richardson aide, Billy Sparks, confirmed the governor’s remarks. Richardson “is interested in either debunking the story or (encouraging) full disclosure” of any unreleased records on the case, Sparks said.

To the Air Force, though, there is no mystery _ and there hasn’t been for a long time. In 1994, the Air Force published “Roswell Report: Case Closed, ” which asserted that so-called saucer debris was, in fact, the ruins of an unusual type of military research balloon, which contained hypersensitive acoustic sensors designed to detect the rumble of any Soviet A-bomb tests. A subsequent investigation by the U.S. General Accounting Office was unable to locate any unreleased records on the case.

Hence, Richardson’s foreword drew scorn from veteran UFO investigators and science popularizers.

“We’re kind of disappointed in Richardson for perpetuating the mythology of that thing,” said Dave Thomas, president of New Mexicans for Science and Reason, a skeptics group in Albuquerque.

The grand old man of skeptical UFO investigators, Philip J. Klass, who has written for Aviation Week & Space Technology since 1952, said: “Gov. Richardson _ whom I previously admired _ is wrong about Roswell and too trusting of TV network promoters. After more than a third of a century of research, I have found no credible evidence of extraterrestrial visitors.”

Andrew Fraknoi, a noted astronomy popularizer, critic of pseudoscience and faculty members at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, called Richardson’s foreword unbelievable.

“This continues to confirm that election or appointment to high office does not guarantee wisdom in all areas of human thought,” he said.

But in a show of extraterrestrial bipartisanship, the executive director of the New Mexico Republican Party is taking Richardson’s side. Greg Graves, a Roswell native who suspects the crashed object was “something more than a weather balloon,” wants to know what really happened in the Southwestern desert two years before his birth.

Wright-Patterson A.F.B.

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, located in Ohio, is frequently mentioned in UFO Folklore as the destination for the bodies of extraterrestrials recovered from the crash near Roswell in 1947. The Roswell Incident is, without doubt, the most discussed event in the history of Ufology.
According to radio broadcasts at the time of Roswell, the disk-shaped object which fell to earth was transported by the military to Wright-Patterson AFB. As mentioned previously, many researchers believe that the occupants of the Roswell craft were also transported to the same destination, or to be more precise, Hanger 18 at the base.
The highly controversial “MJ 12 Documents” also state quite clearly that extraterrestrials should be delivered to the Blue Lab at Wright-Paterson (The MAJESTIC12 are covered in some detail on this site).

The late June Crane claimed, before she died, that she started work at the base in 1942 when she was just 18 years of age. She also claimed that, whilst working at Wright-Patterson, she was told of the arrival of the bodies of the occupants of the “flying saucer” which crashed at Roswell and that she actually touched some unusual metallic material of which the saucer was made.

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