Radar, Skeptics, and “No Scientific Proof”

In a previous essay I spoke about eyewitness testimony. It was in response to a scientist who denigrated the value of such evidence. The claim that there is no scientific proof at all, a much broader and even more frivolous judgment , is a constantly recurring lament. No scientific proof! May I bring up first the subject of radar?

Have any of the skeptics, who blithely toss around such pronouncements, any awareness of the huge numbers of UFO sightings so well supported by radar? The safety, and sometimes the lives, of anyone traveling by air, for many decades has depended to a large extent on the accuracy and reliability of this scientific accomplishment. It is used not only in aircraft, but primarily by thousands of ground controllers to keep planes separated from each other, airliners, military, and small private planes alike. Millions of passengers have unthinkingly relied on radar to guide their planes to the centerline of runways too shrouded by fog to be seen by their pilots until practically on them.

Dr. Herman Oberth, a German born rocket scientist, once called the father of astronautics, wrote in 1962 about UFO tracking. He pointed out that radar measurements up to 42,000 mph had been recorded. There were, he said, over 1000 readings available. Today that number would be many thousands. Most importantly, speaking of the doubters, he said that if the radar equipment were so undependable that they could not be believed “I would not understand why the navy has furnished its planes with such equipment.” Ditto for Airlines, and the Air Force.

In recent years, more precise electronic means, mainly global positioning systems, have been used for more pinpoint accuracy in landings, but radar still plays an important role in all air navigation. No one has ever seemed to question its usefulness, reliability or accuracy. Except, that is, when they pick up UFOs or confirm sightings of eyewitnesses. The sheer numbers of them itself is irresistibly compelling. But many of them, standing alone, should be enough without more to establish as undeniable fact, that we are being visited by something under intelligent control from beyond this earth.

Let us mention only two such episodes, both from those long ago days, shortly before the government made it a crime for the military pilots or radar operators to talk about any sighting of UFOs.

A B-29 bomber, on December 6, 1952, was on a practice flight over the Gulf of Mexico, about 100 miles south of the Louisiana coast heading west. There were three radar units aboard. Redundancy is very important in all aviation, and the three units were separately powered and working independently of each other. The main unit was manned by a trained radar operator, a Lieutenant Coleman. The pilot and the navigator each handled their own. About 5:25 A.M a target appeared on Coleman’s unit approaching from dead ahead. He computed the speed at 5,240 mph. In 1952, the world speed limit for manned aircraft could not have been over 1000 mph, and probably not that. The very natural response of the pilot, a Captain Harter: “That’s impossible. Recalibrate your set.”

As Coleman recalibrated, four other blips came on the screen from dead ahead. Coleman found his set to be in order, without malfunction. The four new sightings appeared now on all three units. Coleman’s assistant, Master Sergeant Bailey observed the four craft from the side observation blister as blue streaks. Meanwhile all three scopes picked up a second group of blips travelling at over 5000 mph; then a third group, also from dead on. The captain noted on his scope that 40 miles behind him a group of five of the strangers turned and headed straight for the bomber from behind. As they approached they slowed and paced the B-29 from behind for about 10 seconds.

Soon, all of the groups rejoined the mother ship and merged with it. The large ship, with its ‘offspring’ aboard, quickly accelerated and sped away. “You won’t believe this,” said Coleman to his stunned crewmates: “It was making over 9000 mph.” Replied Harter; “I believe it. That’s just what I figured.”

Three independently working radar sets, all operated by trained crew members. Question for our skeptic friends: Is that enough science for you?

If not, try this: In 1952, between July 13th and July 29th, there was a hornets’ nest of UFOs targeting for observation our most restricted sites in the nation’s capital city. There were very many reports of highly trained witnesses, which, except for those corroborated by radar, we will ignore as our subject now is radar. The following are only highlights of many more during that period.

On the 19th, National (now Ronald Regan) Airport, reported picking up unidentified targets on radar. On the 20th, the same airport tower called a National flight to check on unidentified radar targets. The crew spotted them and described their remarkable movements. The Chief CAA traffic controller later related that the pilots’ description of their movements “coincided with the position of our pips [radar targets] at all times.” Also on the 20th, radar confirmed the report of an approaching Capitol Airline captain of being followed by an unidentified light to within 4 miles of the airport. On the same day there were additional unidentified targets on radar at National, and ten on the radar at Andrews AFB weather tower. This latter group was observed for from 10 to 15 minutes making sharp turns and reversals of direction.

On the 26th radar at both National and Andrews tracked a UFO they termed a “big target.” Later that day national tracked ‘solid’ returns of four targets in line abreast, while Andrews tracked 10 to 12 UFOs in the Washington D.C. area. Air Route Traffic Control radar at National later reported 8 UFOs, and two jets were dispatched to investigate.

On the 27th, a navy electronics expert, Lt. Holcomb accompanied by Major Dewey Fournet, UFO investigator for the government, arrived at National and observed “7 good solid targets.” As requested, Holcomb checked on temperature inversions, but advised the AF command post that they were minor and could not account for the sightings. Later that day there was an attempt at interception by an F-94,following a radar tracking, but both the pilot and the radar lost contact with the UFO. Later that day, the Air Force, despite the opinion of its own qualified personnel, attributed the sightings to temperature inversions, causing false radar images. How strange that so many mirages of witnesses correlate so well with radar malfunctions.

During this same period of time, gigantic objects were tracked orbiting the earth. Two came down between Washington and Baltimore and hovered at 79,000 feet. A squadron of jets tried to intercept but could not reach that altitude. One of the pilots told Allen Hynek, a UFO investigator and author, that “I have never been more terrified in my life. Just to look at that thing you could tell you would be crazy to go up there and try to shoot at it. Thank God we couldn’t get up that close.” A second pilot concurred: “I was scared too. I don’t know any of the pilots that were involved who weren’t scared just seeing that damned huge thing like that.”

Some temperature inversion. And radar is not the only contribution of science to the proof of the UFO reality. There are Geiger counters, symptoms of excessive radiation to witnesses, broken limbs and shrubbery where craft have been seen to rise through them, and there is their frequent adverse effect on our electrical equipment and other indicia, which we leave for another day.

The author’s web site is www.ourinterplanetaryfuture.com

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