Roswell, or the great UFO legend

publicado a la‎(s)‎ 13 jul 2020, 6:23 por Plataforma Sites Dgac   [ actualizado el 4 nov 2020, 8:13 ]
On June 24, 1947, civilian pilot Kenneth Arnold saw anomalous aerial phenomena while flying on his airplane near Mount Rainier, in Washington State, in the United States of America. His strange tale made it to the newspapers and that gave rise to a series of similar reports in that country and in the rest of the world, thus initiating what has been dubbed the “contemporary UFO age”.
One of the sites in the New Mexico desert where an object would allegedly have crashed in early July, 1947.

Front page of The Roswell Daily Record from July 8, 1947, in which the article about the capture of a "flying saucer" in the Roswell region was published.

Major Jesse Marcel shows to the press the debris recovered at the Foster Ranch in July, 1947.
However, since the mid-1990s a case that took place the week after the Arnold sighting gained prominence and is currently considered the most famous in the history of ufology. We refer, of course, to the famous “Roswell incident”.
 
Something crashes in New Mexico

Between 2 and 4 July, 1947, during a stormy night something crashed in the vicinity of the JB Foster Ranch, located about 130 kilometers Northwest of the town of Roswell, in the State of New Mexico.

The next morning, William “Mac” Brazel, who was the foreman at the Foster Ranch, found the remains of something on the property grounds that he could not identify. There were scraps of metallic paper and little beams and sticks reminiscent of what we now know as plastic.

It took a few days for Brazel to load his truck with scraps of that material to take to town and showed what he had found to Roswell’s Sheriff George Wilcox.

The law enforcement officer was also unable to identify the material and notified the air base. From there they sent Major Jesse Marcel, who examined the remains and questioned Mac Brazel.

Intrigued, Marcel asked Brazel to take him to the place where he had collected the remains. So, Brazel led Major Marcel and Captain Sheridan Cavitt, who was an Intelligence officer, to the Foster Ranch.

As the military did not know what was the material that was still scattered on the ranch, they reported the situation to their superiors and this led to a “rake operation”, in which a contingent of uniformed men traveled to the site to pick up every last bit of the strange material.

Following the recovery of the wreckage, Roswell Air Base Chief Colonel William “Butch” Blanchard ordered Public Relations Officer Walter Haut to write a note informing that the 509th Bomb Squadron had recovered the wreckage of a “flying saucer” on a ranch near Roswell. 

Disclosure and denial

The 509th Bomb Squadron was the only one in the country carrying the atomic bomb and were aircraft from that squadron that dropped the atomic bombs over Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, on 6 and 9 August 1945. Therefore, it was considered that the military personnel stationed at Roswell were highly specialized, and the press release issued by the air base certainly captured the attention domestically and beyond the borders of the United States when The Roswell Daily Record, the local newspaper, ran on the cover of its issue of Tuesday, July 8, 1947, that the Army Air Base in Roswell had a “flying saucer” in custody.

As the issue was reported by news agencies, the Roswell incident was one of the first UFO articles published in the Chilean press. However, the following day the same newspaper published the official denial. The recovered remains were taken to Fort Worth, Texas, where they were examined by General Roger Ramey. The verdict? They were only the remains of a weather balloon that had fallen to the ground. The story died there.

The world practically forgot about the Roswell incident until the late 1970s. 

Jesse Marcel reactivates the legend 

In 1978, Jesse Marcel, aged 70, was interviewed by ufologist Stanton Friedman. In the interview, Marcel said that the remains recovered at the Foster ranch were not the remains of a weather balloon, as had been said, but of an object from another planet and that the US military had covered up the case.

That was really the beginning of the “Roswell Case” as it is known today. In 1980, Charles Berlitz —the author of the international bestseller The Bermuda Triangle— published with William Moore a book entitled The Roswell Incident, in which he gave an account of the original event of 1947, the later statements of Jesse Marcel of the late 1970s and pointed to a possible cover-up.

Although that particular book did not have a considerable impact, it repositioned Roswell as a UFO story in the 1980s and paved the way for what was to come.

UFO Crash at Roswell, the first more in-depth book about the incident, was published in 1991 by Kevin Randle and Donald Schmitt after conducting a thorough investigation into the case. In the book, the authors included several accounts, including that of Jesse Marcel’s son, who claims to have seen the remains of what crashed into the Foster Ranch as a child, and of other witnesses allegedly involved with the recovery of the material and even of humanoid-looking corpses.

Along the same lines, Stanton Friedman published Crash at Corona in 1992, which was followed by the publication in 1994 of The Truth About the UFO Crash at Roswell, the second book on the case by Randle and Schmitt, in which they provided even more accounts that hinted that in 1947 were recovered the remains of something really strange and that the authorities covered up the truth.

As if that was not enough, in 1995 a filmmaker named Ray Santilli shook the world by releasing a footage that, he claimed, showed the autopsy that had been performed on a humanoid entity whose body had been recovered near Roswell in July, 1947.

Although shortly afterwards it was confirmed that the alleged autopsy was actually a fraud, TV series like The X-Files were responsible for catapulting the Roswell incident as the UFO case par excellence and generated a series of discussions and controversies between those who believed that something truly exotic had fallen at the Foster Ranch and the authorities had covered it up, and those who defended the thesis that the remains belonged to a conventional object.
 
Official version

Faced with the controversy, the US Government took action on the matter and in 1995 published a document entitled The Roswell Report, in which it revealed that what crashed on the Foster ranch was actually a balloon belonging to the “Mogul Project”, which in 1947 was secret and that involved sending balloons at high altitude in the stratosphere with special sensors to capture eventual atomic tests by the Soviet Union.

In 1997, just a few days before the 50th anniversary of the mythical case, the United States Air Force published a second report entitled The Roswell Report: Case Closed, which went deeper to explain the case in conventional terms and added that the alleged humanoid entities reported were actually dummies that were dropped by the military from airplanes at high altitudes to perform various physical and equipment tests.

With that, the US authorities declared the Roswell controversy closed , although ufologists and UFO fans distrust the official version and believe that something else happened in the New Mexico desert in 1947.
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