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Argentina: "Invasores" (Invaders) - Alejandro Agostinelli’s New Book
by Mariana Guzzante
Los Andes On-Line

Posted: 14:45 June 1, 2009

Journalist Alejandro Agostinelli has published a book that reopens the legendary UFO case that bewildered Mendoza in 1968. It is being displayed today in our province. This documentary history is a review of Argentinean sightings that involve Chupacabras, little green dwarves and spiritism. There is a revival of alien culture: “V” is returning to television, and the Star Trek remake is on top of the box office. The invaders are among us once more.

It isn’t hard to picture Alejandro Agostinelli – an interesting journalist, a tracker of mysteries – scouring through the X-Files of this part of the world.

His book is somewhere between the pleasure of the chronicle and the flashback of an archive. That’s how this project should have started. Editorial Sudamericana has recently published it under the name “Invasores”, and that’s how it ended. Over 300 pages written with the perfect excuse of narrating Argentina’s most startling extraterrestrial sightings, including the famous case involving “little green men” that caused an uproar in local ufology in ’68.

A journalist may delight in sleuthing across the paranormal landscape; for he protagonists of these events – the contactees – it is an exhumation of an extreme experience.

For that reason, both Agostinelli and the voices of the protagonists of the close encounter that shook the region in the late ‘60s will be here tonight, journalist Miguel Titiro among them.

A Contactee Event In the Heartland

A couple vanishes in Chascomús and appears instantaneously in Mexico, as though written in the script for the movie “Jumper”. Two employees of the Casino de Mendoza encounter little green men and have a telepathic experience with them; a team of Buenos Aires spiritists makes contact with an “engineer” from Ganymede, the largest moon of Jupiter. A woman named Silvia Perez founds the “Museo del Ovni” in Victoria, Entre Rios.

The stories told in “Invasores” appear to avoid falling into ufological fervor, but nonetheless insert a disquieting description: “true stories”, as stated on the cover. You mean they’re real? “Yes,” says the author, “because these are documented stories. The reader may enjoy the recollections and experiences of their protagonists while having solid historical data at hand. None of the stories is unreal. All of these have appeared in the press, in newscasts and eventually in books on the subject.”

Thus, with several first-person accounts that are sheer narrative gold, Agostinelli chose 11 invasions. What will be the outcome of reading this book, now that the subject of aliens feels slightly retro? “No idea, that’s another mystery,” says the author. It may be, perhaps, a fine opportunity for taking out the folding chair and watching the skies again.

Che Ovni

It is clear that this is a work charged with comparative paranoia, hallucination and longing.

Furthermore, these accounts include the Chupacabras, [the subterranean city of] Erks, tours of Mount Uritorco and strange abductions like that of Zulma Fayad. There is even a translation of “Martin Fierro” (Argentina’s national epic – ed.) into “Varkulets”, an unusual alien lingo. And a constant appears. Unlike other countries, which point to Mars or Venus as the alien homeland, Argentineans connect more closely with visitors from Ganymede, one of the Jovian satellites.

“UFOs, the stories woven around them, and their effect upon culture. Those are the subjects to which I devoted the greatest time and passion throughout my life, “ Agostinelli says frankly.

And how to choose the cases? How did you know that the were the stories were those and not others?

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