ROSWELL: 52 YEARS OF
By Donald R. Schmitt
& Thomas J. Carey
How could such a monumental event as a UFO crash in 1947 be kept a secret so long?
Surely the real story would have leaked before now, as has seemingly happened to every
government secret in the past 25 years. President Nixon himself, with all his powers and
resources, wasnt able to prevent reporters Woodward and Bernstein from uncovering
the Watergate conspiracy.
Secrets surely do leak, but some secrets dont for long periods of time. Consider
- The F-117 Stealth fighter was developed in secret and was flying for almost a decade
while the public was told the aircraft was still on the drawing board.
- Project Ultra, the Allied World War II project that allowed us to break the codes of the
Germans and thereby hasten their defeat, was a secret for 30 years until revealed in the
- Radiation experiments by the U.S. government on their own personnel during and after
WWII were kept secret until the last five years.
- Only recently have the numerous military accidental deaths from nuclear devices been
disclosed, not because of a desire by the government to admit the truth, but because of
the dedicated probing of civilian organizations.
- Mind-control experiments by the CIA on unsuspecting citizens 30 years ago were kept
secret until the past few years.
- Charles B. Moore of Project Mogul fame never knew the name of the secret project he was
working on until 1992!
So it is certainly true that the government can keep secrets; but to what lengths are
public officials prepared to go to enact a cover-up? Consider this one instance from an
event that occurred during World War II. The Boeing Airplane Company was secretly
developing the B-29 bomber for the Army Air Force at its main plant near Seattle. On
February 18, 1943, a prototype B-29 caught on fire during a test flight and crashed in
Seattle onto a meat packing plant. The plane actually passed over downtown Seattle during
its rapid descent. All members of the crew died, along with several employees of the plant
and some of the firemen who fought the blaze that engulfed the plane and plant.
Thousands of people saw the plane coming down and the subsequent fire and rescue
efforts. Did the story of the crash of a secret aircraft go out over the wires that same
day, with accounts from these many witnesses? Although it seems unlikely, the FBI
succeeded in preventing any but the most garbled information from leaking out. FBI agents
went so far as to intercept all copies of City Transit Weekly, an employee
newsletter that carried photos of the plane taken by a Seattle city bus driver.
So the government does keep secrets, and it will take extreme measures to protect those
secrets in matters of national security. Could the Roswell event have been sufficiently
important to warrant such treatment? We think so, and so must have two men, both now
deceased, whom we have interviewed.
The Provost Marshal at the Roswell base, the equivalent of the chief of police, was in
charge of all security at the crash site in 1947. When we located and then contacted Col.
Edwin Easley in late 1989, it was the first time anyone had extensively questioned him
about what had occurred. The Provost Marshal did not tell us the weather balloon cover
story, nor did he give us a true account of the Roswell recovery. Instead, he told us that
he considered himself still sworn to secrecy about the eventafter 43 years! I
cant talk about it, was all that Easley kept repeating.
The second officer we interviewed was an agent in the Counter-Intelligence Corps, Lt.
Colonel Sheridan Cavitt. He accompanied another intelligence officer, Major Jesse Marcel,
on the initial trip to the debris site and, we believe, wrote a report on the incident for
his superiors in Washington. At first, this intelligence agent refused to admit that he
was stationed at Roswell in early July 1947 or that the event had occurred at all. There
had been no newspaper story, no fuss, not even the recovery of a weather balloon. After
much prodding, he was willing to admit to the U.S. Air Force only that a weather balloon
came down and was recovered, but that was as far as he would go. He admits no other
personal involvement, even though other reliable sources give him a central role. Now he
is considered the number one participant/witness for the Air Force, endorsing their Mogul
We admire how seriously these gentlemen took their oaths of secrecy for almost 50
years, but we must raise this question: Why the need to conceal the recovery of a Mogul
weather balloon after more then 50 years?
The government cover-up extends to the public records of the Air Force UFO
investigation as well. Those records were released in 1976, and the file on Roswell
contains but a single press clipping. No letters, no notes, no investigative forms, no
official weather balloon explanation, nothing but that lone clipping. The file for the
recovery of an identical weather balloon in Circleville, Ohio, at the same time as the
Roswell event, contains far more documentation on its particulars. Where is the
documentation that should be in the Roswell file? Historical Roswell AFB records have also
disappeared without a trace according to the GAO investigation.
The evidence presented here establishes that the Roswell crash was one of those events
that had to be kept secret by whatever means were necessary. Files and notes were
confiscated from reporters, radio stations were warned not to air stories, a phony story
was concocted, and men were sworn to secrecy. Many of these tactics today would be termed
civil rights violations.
As you can well imagine, it has not been an easy task to reconstruct what actually
occurred in July of 1947. Many of the men (and the few women) involved are now dead, and
those living are quite elderly. Human memory does not record events with complete
accuracy, especially after years have elapsed. As Kevin Tierney has explained in his book How
to Be A Witness, when someone has been asked to recount his memory of an event several
times, For the most part what he says will be the same, but there will generally be
minor discrepancies between his recollection on one occasion and the next. This is
certainly true for the accounts we have gathered concerning Roswell, and the natural
errors that creep into an individuals memory mean that some inconsistencies exist in
the testimony you will read. Nevertheless, the general pattern of events we have recorded
from essentially all the witnesses does fit one consistent picture.
As those above the age of five at the time of President Kennedys assassination
can relate, the moment when they first learned of that gruesome event is permanently
etched in their mindsa snapshot memory. Several of the Roswell witnesses have
compared their memories of the 1947 event to that of the assassination: The Roswell
memories are vivid and detailed, despite the passage of 50 years.
Government secrecy is not always something evil and unjustified. We understand and
support the practice of secrecy as it applies to certain types of information. Some
information should remain hidden, such as nuclear firing codes, covert military activity,
undercover police investigations, and information regarding intelligence work. But records
documenting the recovery of a Mogul balloon hardly merit such treatment. And Project Mogul
was a failed experiment.
What could have happened so long ago at Roswell to cause former intelligence officers
to abide by their oaths of secrecy today, even though previous accounts of the recovery
have been published and broadcast? What kind of event required such high levels of
security that the intelligence officer who participated in the initial recovery of the
debris, and who was entrusted with the task of taking some of the debris to higher levels
of command, was not allowed to read the written report upon his return? What caused the
military to place the ranch manager who reported finding the debris under house arrest?
Why have the military records of men involved with the debris disappeared?
Unfortunately, we face the same problem that other researchers facelack of
physical evidence. While it is generally accepted that all efforts by civilian researchers
have yielded no tangible evidence, it is also true that Roswell may have indeed
established that nuts and bolts evidence. But still the question remains, who
is telling the truththe officials who deny that physical proof, or the hundreds of
witnesses who stand in total opposition to that position?
And if the Roswell incident is indeed what hundreds of credible witnesses swear it was,
the enigma of UFOs is no longer spurious or abstruse. Answers, though known only by a
select few, are still being withheld. However, we can now, in total confidence and
conviction, direct the public to the undeniable source of the proof. Proof that would
enable us to finally lift the veil of secrecy that surrounds Roswell. With all of that as
a precursor, put aside all political agenda, all preconceived opinions, all bias, and
consider the following:
- If the debris originated from a top-secret test, why was there no recovery or search
operation underway until rancher Mac Brazel reported the debris to Sheriff George Wilcox
one day after the find on Sunday, July 6? An aerial search over open range and high desert
would have taken but a few hours to locate any downed object. This has been confirmed by
retired military officers, who were involved in actual search-and-rescue missions in New
Mexico. We, too, have flown private planes over the Brazel site demonstrating the
panoramic field of vision. Given that the debris field was three-quarters of a mile long,
a search and recovery team could have located it long before Brazel did.
- Weather balloons had fallen onto Brazels ranch on a number of occasions, and he
turned them in for the rewards offered. Such devices always carried instructions and
return policies which usually included the name of the manufacturer and location of the
launch site. In 1945, he reported finding the remains of a Japanese balloon bomb. This
time, however, he reportedly was angry because of the large amount of debris. His
frightened sheep would not cross the pasture due to the vast coverage of the material. It
is interesting to note that weather balloons are still dropping on the ranch. The current
owners store them in an old feed storage silo. One particularly large balloon, about 20
feet in diameter, took one man approximately two minutes to retrieve. He had no trouble
- After personally examining samples of the material, why did Brazels neighbors
encourage him to report the crash for the $3,000 reward reported by the press for physical
evidence of a flying disc and not for the standard $5 balloon reward?
- How did the highly trained and experienced military officers of the famous 509th atomic
bomb wing, the first and only nuclear strike force in the world at that time, mistake a
conventional weather instrument for an object they all, without exception, concluded to be
an actual flying saucer? Skeptics who believe that it was a special
radar-reflecting balloon from Project Mogul have said that the civilians, the base
commander, Col. William Blanchard, the head of intelligence, Marcel, and all the other
officers at Roswell were unfamiliar with such specialized equipment. Marcel, however, had
a radar interpretation officer assigned to his office. He would have been able to
recognize the balloon, even if the others were fooled. Even considering Mogul, balloon
materials consisting of Neoprene rubber, reflective foil, wooden sticks, masking tape, and
balling twine still comprised such a devicematerials easily identifiable by even a
- What type of balloon and instrument package could scatter debris over an area
three-quarters of a mile long and create a 500-foot long/10-foot wide gouge in the tough
high desert country of New Mexico which consists of little topsoil and mostly shale and
- What type of balloon would fill Marcels 1942 Buick convertible, and Cavitts
jeep carryall truck and still require 50 to 60 troops with wheelbarrows and trucks two
days to complete the cleanup?
- Why did the military check the site for possible radiation if the downed object was
nothing more than a common weather/Mogul balloon? After he was found at the home of Walt
Whitmore Sr., majority owner of radio station KGFL in Roswell, on the morning of Tuesday,
July 8, why was Brazel held in detention at the base for another seven days? According to
Brazel, he was not allowed to place any outside calls, not even to his wife. He was also
forced to undergo a physical examination. His family and neighbors remember how he later
complained how he had been asked the same questions over and over again, and
that he described the experience by saying he was in jail.
- Why did the Secretary of the Federal Communications Commission, a Mr. Slowie in
Washington, D.C., personally call Whitmore at KGFL and threaten removal of his
broadcasting license if the station continued airing reports of the incident? Why would
the chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Dennis Chavez of New Mexico,
also call Whitmore and persuade him to comply with the FCC order? *
- Why the need for extreme security measures at the crash site of a downed meteorological
instrument? Measures such as: armed guards surrounding the inner gouge area, another
cordon around the perimeter, riflemen posted on the surrounding hills, and MPs stationed
on the outlying roads from Saturday, July 5, through at least Thursday, the 10th.
- Why was Bud Payne, a hired hand on one of the neighboring ranches, physically removed
from the Brazel ranch during the military occupation of the site? As Payne was attempting
to round up a stray cow, a military jeep roared up to him and MPs physically forced him
off the ranch.
- Why were there seven confirmed (possibly eight) flights to transport the remains of a
balloon? Most of the wreckage was flown out under high security July 510 . . .
rather extreme treatment even within the confines of the top security base in the world at
- If the object was nothing more than a weather balloon, or even a Project Mogul device,
why would Colonel Blanchard set up operations at the recovery site? As the commanding
officer of the 509th Bomb Group, Blanchard would have had more important duties.
- Why was farmer Sherman Campbell and the local sheriff in Circleville, Ohio, able to
immediately identify the Rawin (Mogul) target device that crashed there on July 5, while
no one in Roswell could? In fact, the Campbell family was even permitted to keep the
balloon the Air Force currently claims was so secret.
- Why was the debris of a weather balloon, as identified by Warrant Officer Irving Newton,
displayed in Brigadier General Roger Rameys office different from that of a Mogul
balloon device? The new Air Force theory describes painted floral symbols on masking tape
used to reinforce the radar kite in an effort to explain hieroglyphic-like characters on
I-beam structures as portrayed by witnesses. Even under high magnification none are
evident in the photographs taken in Rameys office at Fort Worth (Carswell) Army Air
Field in Texas.
- Why did Rameys Chief of Staff Colonel Thomas J. DuBose (who is pictured with Ramey
in two of the weather balloon photos) sign a sworn affidavit in 1990 attesting to
switching the balloon wreckage for the genuine material? It was a cover story . . .
to get the press off of Rameys back.
- Contrary to Ramey announcing to reporters the weather balloon explanation along with his
cancellation of debris being flown to Wright Field in Dayton, Ohio, why did the FBI refute
the Generals claims in a telex which was sent at 6:17 p.m. CST the same day of the
press conference on July 8? ...But that telephonic conversation between their office
and [Wright Field] had not borne out this belief. Disc and balloon being transported to
Wright Field by special plane for examination.
- Why did a special photo team from Washington, D.C., under the command of Col. Anton
Hansen, arrive at Roswell to photograph the recovery and record the subsequent events?
Against standard operating procedure, the 3rd Photo Lab at the Roswell base was never
called in to photograph the crash site or the material.
- Why were two Secret Service agents by the names McCann and Devinnes dispatched from
Washington to represent the president in Roswell during the incident?
- Why were there unknown doctors and nurses observed at the Roswell base hospital at the
time of the incident as noted by nurse Rosemary McMannis?
- If the recovery was of nothing more unusual that a Mogul balloon, photographed in
Rameys office by the news media on July 8, why did the military, on July 9, tour the
various news media in Roswell retrieving copies of Walter Hauts press release? If
there was nothing to the story, why did the military search radio station
everything that related to the crash, including the documents that newsman Frank Joyce
tried to hide?
- Why did the U.S. military, like a scene from a 1950s sci-fi movie, surround the
Roswell Sheriff s Office just to retrieve a small box of debris that Brazel had left there
- Why did the Pentagon contact Muroc (Edwards) Army Air Field in California inquiring as
to any missing Northrop flying wings within days of the crash north of Roswell? Muroc
responded negative. Due to jet engine conversion, none were operational in
1947. Eyewitnesses reported the recovered craft at Roswell was wing-shaped, not saucer.
- There was reportedly talk at the base during the recovery concerning bodies
involved in the crash. Rumors circulated through the town of Roswell about one of the crew
still alive. One day after the first press release, the Army and Navy, as reported by the
Associated Press, moved to Shut down the rumors. The Air Force now maintains
that no such talk concerning bodies took place. Why?
- Secrecy oaths would not have been required for the recovery of a weather balloon, or any
other conventional device, unless it was a highly classified subject. Why were the men
involved taken into a conference room in groups of 1012 and verbally sworn to
protect the truth concerning what actually happened? Others at Roswell and Fort Worth were
ordered not to discuss it, or ever bring it up again.
- Ed Reese, in charge of the now declassified Project Blue Book files at the National
Archives, told us that he too was surprised that Roswell is not included in the Blue Book
system with all other explained reports. Why is the most highly publicized UFO case of all
time strangely absent?
- Neighbors of Mac Brazel, including Loretta Proctor and her son Norris, reported that
Brazel returned from his detention driving a new pick-up truck. According to Norris
Proctor, Brazel, who had been dirt poor, suddenly had money to buy a new house
in Tularosa, a meat locker in Las Cruces, and property in Colorado. Robert Wolf, also a
good friend of Brazel, recounted how he observed him with a new truck at the Mitchell Feed
and Granary in Roswell within months of the incident. Was Brazel paid the reward for the
physical evidence of a flying saucer?
- The daughter of Melvin Brown reported that her father, who had seen the bodies the day
they were recovered, along with the MPs at the crash site, were paid off. She said that a
special trust account was established in Roswell for the guards. Why would there be
payoffs to maintain secrecy of a weather balloon? A handwritten note with the account
number was supplied by Brown just days before he died. Attempts to locate such a fund have
- There are two, possibly three sites involved with the crash at Roswell. First is the
debris field. Thirty miles to the southeast where the remains of the craft and crew were
located is the second. A few miles to the northwest of the debris site was apparently a
touchdown point of baked soil and fused sand which was first seen by Chaves County
deputies and then by Lewis R. Rickett and Dr. Lincoln LaPaz. How is it possible that a
balloon and array train could be responsible for sites such as these?
- Pieces of small wreckage Brazels son Bill Jr. had managed to collect were
confiscated by the military in 1949. Why was the military still monitoring the situation
two years later? This was almost two years after Mogul had been declassified. Why were
search teams still dispatched from the base at Roswell through the end of 1947, through
1948, and into 1949 to recover remaining debris at the sites specifically after heavy
rainfalls as described by Major Charles McGee?
- If the Roswell device was nothing more than a weather balloon, why bring in LaPaz, a
noted expert in the discovery and recovery of meteorites? LaPaz had worked on dozens of
classified government projects, including the ultra-classified Manhattan Project. If it
was nothing more unusual than a balloon, why would the Pentagon assign him to determine
the speed and trajectory of the downed device two months after the crash?
- In 1952, Major Ellis Boldra, an engineer stationed at Roswell, discovered a
one-foot-square section of debris locked in a safe in the engineering office. It displayed
the same extraordinary characteristics described by 1947 witnesses including the memory
capabilities. Why did Washington D.C. dispatch a special courier to retrieve the material
immediately after news leaked out about its discovery in Roswell?
- At our request, retired Navy Seal officer Charles Mascovich submitted the names and
documented series numbers of over two dozen military personnel stationed at Roswell in
July 1947 to both the Defense Department and the Veterans Administration for further
confirmation of military service. The list included Charles E. Hanshaw, James W. Hundley,
William J. Cardell, Lee J. Mulliner, Melvin E. Brown, Ernest O. Powell, Clyde M.
Robertson, Cecil T. Yoakum, Harold T. Hastings, Edward M. Sager, and Donald E. Carroll.
Why does neither the Defense Department nor the Veterans Administration have records
of any of these men when we can document that each served at the Roswell Army Air Field?
- If there was nothing to the Roswell case other than a misidentification of a weather
balloon, why have witnesses, on their deathbeds, denied that? Melvin E. Brown spent the
last four days of his life telling his family that it wasnt a weather balloon. Why
was the dying archaeologist/geologist at St. Petersburg Hospital in Florida telling the
nurses she had seen the bodies and then warning them about government reprisal? Roswell
base Provost Marshal Edwin Easley, base Adjutant Patrick Saunders, and 393 Squadron pilot
O.W. Pappy Henderson also gave deathbed testimony confirming the flying
saucer crash and the recovery of bodies. And there are others more recent.
- The unusual qualities of the material described to date by two dozen known eyewitnesses
are consistent in every detail. In appearance, tensile strength, apparent weightlessness,
memory characteristics, uninterpretable symbology, fiber-optic and plastic-like, metallic
composition, its physical make-up would be difficult to duplicate even by todays
standards. Why do none of the first-hand witnesses describe common materials from a
weather balloon? And more importantly, why were none of these individuals interviewed by
the Air Force for their 1994 Roswell Report?
- In an unprecedented reaction by then Secretary of Defense Les Aspin, why did he refuse
to respond to three separate letters of request for the release of the Roswell files from
Congressman Steve Shiff of New Mexico in 1993? Why did Congressman Shiff also receive
denials from the Air Force, the Pentagon, and the National Security Council for similar
- And if Mogul was as highly classified as the Air Force maintains, which evidently led to
the misidentification in Roswell, how is it that they invited the press to photograph this
missing, top-secret balloon in Rameys office and promote the publication of seven
different pictures in practically every major newspaper throughout the country? And why
would they blow the entire project (with pictures) in the Alamogordo News of July
- Concerning the 1997 Air Force book titled Roswell ReportCase Closed that
proposed the crash dummy explanation, given that the very earliest such tests
took place six years after the 1947 incident, why didnt the Air Force consider that
none of the first-hand witnesses to the bodies remained in the service or were still in
New Mexico at the time of such crash-dummy tests?
- Each description of the bodies by the witnesses from Roswell is consistent.
Interestingly, they do not resemble what have been commonly described by witnesses in
reported UFO occupant cases as well as the alleged abduction accounts. This would tend to
rule out contamination from such sources. And why were none of these witnesses ever
interviewed by the Air Force for any of their recent reports?
- Why would the United States military resort to gross civil-rights violations, i.e.,
physical intimidation and death threats to such civilians asFrankie Rowe, Tommy Thomson,
Frank Joyce, Judd Roberts, Walt Whitmore Sr., Pete and Ruben Anaya, John
George Wilcox? And why were their threats extended to even the witnesss children to
insure their silence about the recovery of simply a weather balloon? Project Mogul was
declassified within two days of the reported balloon explanation on July 10, 1947; still
the threats continued for years after the incident.
- And finally, why do retired members of the military today in 1999, years after the Air
Force Project Mogul and Crash Dummy Reports, still refuse to break their oaths of secrecy
concerning the Roswell incident?
Public apathy often causes an inconsistent approach to important issues. Certainly, an
event such as Roswell would have profound ramifications on our way of viewing the universe
and humanitys place in it. It is because of this potential impact on our lives that
it deserves to be discussed openly and honestly.
It is time that government officials acknowledge their responsibility for their
actionsand their failure. No one can question the rational motivation and benign
intent behind withholding, at first, the truth. Until the true nature of the Roswell
wreckage was identified, it was the duty of government officials and military officers to
safeguard national security through whatever means they believed prudent, including
absolute secrecy and denial of the facts. But they have fallen short. Absolute secrecy has
not been maintained, and the complete truth must be told. No longer should half-truths,
rumors, and innuendo take center stage in the public forum. The whole story must be
revealed before the last of the witnesses takes it to the grave.
The facts have been presented for your consideration. Our investigation has led us to a
conclusion we would present in any court of law, or, if possible, before Congress. In
fact, many of our main witnesses are willing to give congressional depositions. We are
confident that you, too, will demand a complete account. But without sufficient public
support, this is unlikely to happen.
The Roswell case rests on a wealth of circumstantial evidence which we have attempted
to present in a scientific and objective manner. We welcome any conventional explanation
for these events that disapproves, with solid evidence, what we have outlined. As
evidenced in the past, we have time and time again demonstrated our willingness to
thoroughly examine such alternative possibilities. We also believe that we have exhausted
all such solutions to the event.
However, until such proof is forthcoming, we will continue to present the facts as we
have discovered them. We will continue to believe that Roswell represents the recovery of
an unidentified flying object by the United States government. This conclusion is
supported legally by the preponderance of evidence doctrine and scientifically
by Ockhams Law of parsimony. To paraphrase the old Sherlock Holmes
axiom, when all possible explanations have been ruled out, whatever remains, however
impossible, must be the truth.
Sadly, the United States military maintains its official policy of stall and delay
until the few remaining witnesses soon depart with the remainder of the real story. Still,
it is the military who possesses the true physical evidence. Strategically, by denying the
witnesses, they have attempted to bury their tracks. But fortunately for a growing number
of courageous witnesses who have chosen to defy officialdom, we have a much clearer
picture of what truly happened outside of Roswell, New Mexico on that stormy night of July
Let us not forget that the secret keepers are now up to their fourth
official explanation. Ironically, as a Pentagon spokesman addressed media questions
following the crash dummy press conference in June 1997, when asked what the
military response would be should the public not accept their latest Roswell scenario.
Well, then Im afraid well be here again in ten years offering another
explanation. To quote the late Beatle, John Lennon, Just give me some
CUFOS. All rights reserved
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