CHINESE JET FIGHTER PURSUES A UFO
On Monday, October 19, 1998, four military radar stations in Hebei province, China, reported the presence of an unidentified blip hovering above a military flight training school in Changzhou.
Once authorities determined that the intruder was not a military or civilian flight, Colonel Li, the base commander, ordered a Jianjiao 6 jet fighter to take off and intercept the UFO.
"At least 140 people on the ground saw the object."
"To observers at the base, the UFO first appeared to be 'a small star' and then grew larger and larger, perhaps as it descended to a lower altitude, the report said."
"They described an object with a mushroom-shaped dome on top and a flat bottom covered with bright, continually-rotating lights."
The crew of the Jianjiao 6 interceptor consisted of a pilot and a radar officer. The two officers said "the object clearly resembled depictions they had seen in foreign science fiction films...When they got within 4,000 meters (13,200 feet) of the UFO over Qing county, it abruptly shot upward, easily evading subsequent attempts to get closer."
"It appeared to be toying with the fighter by repeatedly outdistancing it and then reappearing right above it, the report said."
The pilot requested permission to fire on the UFO with the plane's automatic 20mm cannon. He was denied permission to shoot by ground control and was told to continue to pursue and observe the object.
The pilot broke off pursuit at an altitude of 12,000 meters (39,600 feet) when the jet began running low on fuel. "The UFO then disappeared before two more modern (Chinese fighter) planes could arrive in the area."
Changzhou is 150 kilometers (90 miles) northwest of Shanghai. (See the Hong Kong Standard for November 4, 1998. The story apparently first ran in the Hebei Daily around October 22 and was picked up by the Chinese weekly newsmagazine Baokhan Wenzhai. Many thanks to Errol Bruce-Knapp and Andy Denne of A.U.R.A. for forwarding the article.)
On Friday, October 9, 1998, electrical engineer Adrian Dvir met with his group of five "alien healers" at his home in Rishon Letzion, a city approximately 24 kilometers (15 miles) southwest of Tel Aviv. Dvir and his colleagues claim that they were given mysterious "healing powers" by aliens from space.
Midway through the meeting, one of the members spotted a UFO moving through the sky. Dvir grabbed his camcorder and began shooting.
"The finest moment of the film is a closeup of the craft revealing three beautiful balls--one orange, the others silver and white in a perfect triangular formation. This is one of the finest UFO films ever taken in Israel," said author/researcher Barry Chamish.
One week later, on Friday, October 16, Avishai Granot, a computer graphics artist, "spotted two triangular craft which flew over the eastern section of Rishon Letzion."
Granot said, "This UFO came from the north at lightning speed, hovered over the city for about a minute, and disappeared in a flash, making a suction sound as it went."
A 20-year-veteran of the Zahal (Israeli Defense Forces--J.T.), Granot said, "I know every craft and weapon we've got and it wasn't one of them."
On Thursday, November 5, 1998, Barry Chamish and ufologist Gil Bar visited Rishon Letzion and interviewed the two men. They also viewed the videos shot by Dvir.
"When he (Granot) saw Dvir's film, he immediately identified the craft on the screen as the one he had seen."
Like Gulf Breeze, Florida or Crestone, Colorado, Rishon Letzion is a notorious UFO hotspot, Chamish said. One year ago, in November 1997, "Gil Bar, 16, filmed an Israeli F-15 chasing a UFO over Rishon Letzion in broad daylight." (Many thanks to Barry Chamish, author of WHO MURDERED YITZHAK RABIN?, for giving UFO Roundup permission to quote from his news story.)
The EQ Pegasi case exploded into a flurry of charges and counter-charges last week.
On October 23, 1998, a man calling himself "Paul Dore" posted GIFs on the Internet which purported to show a strong alien radio signal emanating from the EQ Pegasi star system, 22 light years (132,000,000,000,000 miles) from Earth.
Dr. H. Paul Shuch of the SETI League and Dr. Nathan Cohen of Boston University branded the material a hoax.
On Monday, November 2, John Doe, alias "Paul Dore," hit back at his critics. "This is assuredly not a hoax," he said, explaining that the similarity of signals was caused by his own hasty error in posting. "I was so excited I got onto the Internet on a CLOSED list."
Doe added that "two astronomers at the Effelsberg Radio Observatory" in Germany had confirmed the "hit" and announced that the three of them would appear at a news conference on Wednesday "to announce the discovery of repeating artificial signals from space."
On Friday, October 30, 1998, K.H. Benton, a radio operator living in Castel, on the Isle of Guernsey, claimed that he, too, had picked up a signal from EQ Pegasi.
"I am an amateur radio operator on the Isle of Guernsey (UK) offshore from Normandy," Benton reported. "When I saw the story of the possible SETI discovery on the BBC, I undertook to see if I could pick the signals up."
Benton used his 4.5 meter dish to scan the 23 centimeter band (1296 Mhz to 1450 Mhz) plus an ICOM 8500 receiver and a SETIFOX program up and running on his processor.
"At 12:30 UTC, about the time EQ Pegasi rose in the sky, the program began logging what looked like a faint carrier signal," Benton reported. "If this is a signal from another star, it is incredibly strong. This would have to be beamed directly at us as far as I can tell."
Researchers seeking confirmation tried to log onto the website operated by the Billion-channel Extra-Terrestrial Array (BETA project) in Harvard, Masschusetts, 25 miles (40 kilometers) west of Boston. They complained that they could not access the BETA site.
On Monday, November 2, the Max Planck Institut fur Radioastronomie in Bonn, operators of the Effelsberg Radio Observatory, denied that their astronomers were using the observatory's 100-meter radio telescope to scan EQ Pegasi.
Institute spokesman Dr. Rolf Schwartz said, "The story circulating that the MFIfR is involved in observations to confirm a SETI signal is wrong. The MFIfR is not involved in any SETI project."
Unaware of this, Doe posted a new message, saying, "At noon, I received a call from the two astronomers stating that they would not be with me at the press conference and that I was 'essentially on my own.' 'Fine, then,' I replied, and then apologized and hung up."
"Next, my supervisor rang me up to tell me that I was to cease my experiment immediately," he added, "This was quite strange because he had been supportive ever since the news broke."
Arriving home at 7 p.m., he claimed to have found "three gentlemen in my residence. My wife Helen had the look of sheer terror in her eyes. It turns out one of them was from the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) at Cheltenham, and the other was from RAF Feltwell, and the third from the American National Security Agency (NSA) They asked if we could speak in private."
"Over the course of nearly two hours they explained to me that what I had discovered was not extraterrestrial in nature but was" in actuality an intelligence-gathering satellite "with something known as Project 415."
Doe claimed that the men compelled him "to sign a security oath...which stated that should I further describe any details on this subject I will be subect to prosecution under the terms of the Official Secrets Act."
No sooner had this statement appeared than the real Paul Dore emerged, claiming that Doe had "stolen my resume from my website" which "had been inactive for the past two and a half years."
According to the Boston Globe, "The perpetrator made most of his claims anonymously but then was tentatively identified by SETI researchers as an engineer named Paul Dore; an anonymous resume he had posted was identified as Dore's through an on-line search."
Dr. Shuch said that "he had just heard from the real Paul Dore and is now convinced that he is not the perpetrator. Apparently, whoever was playing the hoax had simply used and altered Dore's resume."
"He's a decent guy, and he has nothing to do with this," Dr. Shuch said.
"'It has all the earmarks of a hoax,' said Darren Leigh, a radio astronomer who operates one of the largest such search efforts in the world today, the BETA project...Nevertheless, Leigh said, the 84-foot dish of the Oak Ridge Observatory's BETA telescope was trained on the region of the sky where the signal had been claimed, just to be sure. And there's nothing there."
The Wednesday press conference was abruptly cancelled.
On Wednesay, November 4, people trying to access the EQ Pegasi website "found a National Security Agency logo" filling the screen.
Peter A. Gersten of Citizens Against UFO Secrecy (CAUS) telephoned NSA headquarters at Fort Meade, Maryland and spoke to Vanessa Taliery of the agency's public relations department.
Gersten reported that Taliery had told him that "anyone can download the NSA seal and emblem and place them on a site." He said Taliery "seemed unaware of the story" that was burning up the Internet.
Speculation about the EQ Pegasi signal continues to spur a fiery debate. (See the Boston Globe for November 4, 1998, "Earthlings say: Not so fast," page A-10)
On Tuesday, November 3, 1998, at 4 a.m., witnesses in Vaksdal, near Bergen, Norway, "reported an object in the eastern part of the sky. It was stationary for about an hour, with flashing lights green on the top and red on the bottom."
Vaksdal is about 280 kilometers (175 miles) west of Oslo, the national capital.
The same morning, between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m., a few residents of Stavanger, a seaport on the North Sea about 240 kilometers (150 miles) southwest of Oslo, reported seeing "a meteorite with a blue tail" over the eastern section of the port city. (Many thanks to Asgeir W. Skavhaug for this news story.)
On Thursday, October 22, 1998, at 11:22 p.m., seven luminous discs flying in a V formation were seen in Grafton, New South Wales, Australia, about 400 kilometers (250 miles) southwest of Sydney.
"This formation was huge," reported local ufologist Barry Taylor. "At 20 centimeters (8 inches) at arm's length, the formation must have been about 25 to 30 meters (83 to 100 feet) in length, and each disc was about three meters (10 feet) altogether. I only observed them for four seconds as they flew over. Missed catching them on video by two seconds."
"The seven red illuminations were covered by a white haze," he added, "This haze blended with the haze of the next illumination (following) They were close together and 'held in position.' The light from each disc was intriguing to see. A soft, smooth, creamy yellowish-white appearance that looked to have depth." (Many thanks to Barry Taylor for this report.)
On Monday, November 2, 1998, at 8:15 p.m., ufologist/researcher Christopher A. Rutkowski "had two calls and heard of three other reports of a bright bolide-like object...Most witnesses were in the eastern end of Winnipeg and Transcona," in Manitoba province, Canada.
The witnesses "reported seeing a 'silver-red' ball in the southeast, heading west. It had a 'long bright tail' behind it, but no sparks."
"Have two witnesses insist the object 'stopped' in mid-flight, remained stationary and then moved away." (Many thanks to Chris Rutkowski for this news story.)
On Friday, October 30, 1998, a woman living at the new Baca Grande housing development near Alamosa, Colorado, looked out the window and spotted small aliens running across the yard.
"The resident reported small objects hitting her house," author/researcher Christopher O'Brien reported, explaining that the house "is out on the (San Luis) Valley and has no tall trees within a quarter mile."
The woman described the intruders as "small hooded figures about four feet tall (1.2 meters)." She also claimed to have seen "a hairy pig" running past the house, a sighting O'Brien said "Sounds more like a Prairie Dragon sighting."
The next day, Saturday, October 31, 1998, "the woman also observed a fast-moving oval- shaped object enter through her back door and slowly headed up the hallway towards her. She described the anomaly as being 'milky- looking with a reflective band around the rim. The band appeared to be like chrome. The witness was so startled that she stopped looking at the object, which apparently then disappeared. She estimated, at its nearest, it was ten feet (3 meters) away from her as it came down the hallway." (Many thanks to Christopher O'Brien, author of THE MYSTERIOUS VALLEY, for this news story.)
(Editor's Comment: If there's an award for Strangest Halloween Visitor, this floating Baca Grande anomaly is a cinch to win.)
Since Friday, October 16, 1998, residents of Polson (population 6,000) and Ronan (population 2,500), two towns on Highway 93 in western Montana have been puzzled by the nightly appearance of a red UFO over the Mission Mountains, just east of town.
The large UFO is seen every night between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m., hovering about 9,000 feet above the mountain range.
"The UFO is reported to be quite large with one continuous red light, a flickering (not blinking) green light and a flickering blue glow which appears under the craft." None of the witnesses have been able to identify the shape of the craft.
On Friday, October 30, 1998, Scott Johnson, foreman of a large manufacturing facility two miles south of Ronan, "brought his entire night shift outside for a look to observe the craft during break."
Johnson reportedly said, "This is not a vehicle of human origin. Its balance, its ability to hover as it does, its soundless(ness)...all make for something that does not match our standard of human air vehicles."
The same night, witnesses near Polson, nine miles to the north, "there were two UFOs at roughly the same altitude about 9 miles apart." (Many thanks to Robert A.M. Stephens for forwarding this news story.)
(Editor's Note: Polson, Montana is at the south end of Flathead Lake and is best known as the "home port" of the Flathead Lake Monster, a.k.a. Flathead Lake Nessie. The creature was seen dozens of times during the summers of 1993 and 1996. See the Lake County Leader of Polson, Montana for October 23, 1996)
On Monday, October 26, 1998, at 7:30 p.m., a man and his elderly mother spotted a UFO over Kettering, Ohio (population 60,659), a city southeast of the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
"It was just 7:30 p.m., and I had just finished my dinner and went outside for a cigarette," the witness reported, "I was on the porch looking north. I decided to walk around the yard, and I looked up at the stars and saw a large, bright disc moving slowly across the sky. I watched it for a second and called my mom out. By the time she got there, it was flying south extremely fast, faster than any airplane I know of...The object just took off, extremely fast." (Many thanks to Kenneth Young of Tri-States Advocates for Scientific Knowledge, T.A.S.K., for forwarding this report.)
On Friday, October 30, 1998, radio station Antena 3, a subsidiary of Radio Nacionao Portugueses (RNP) in Lisbon, decided to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Orson Welles radio drama, War of the Worlds, by broadcasting it during the morning show.
The original Welles script was used and was translated into Portuguese. Instead of having the Martians touch down in Grover's Mill, New Jersey, Antena 3 had the aliens land in Palmela, a town 35 kilometers (21 miles) south of Lisbon.
The station issued a warning at 7 a.m., announcing their intention to broadcast the radio play. But when the play began an hour later at 8 a.m., panic erupted.
The station "broadcasted the landing of a UFO at Palmela" and "the bulletins said that the Martians had set off in the direction of the capital (Lisbon) and that military forces sent to stop them had proved powerless."
"The program's producer said the radio station was inundated with calls from hundreds of panicking people demanding to know what was going on."
The 7 a.m. warning proved worthless "because not everyone is listening to the radio that early."
Some callers said they had fled their workplaces. Others with health problems complained that "the health had deteriorated on news of the Martian invasion."
"One of the organizers of the broadcast said, 'One hundred years after the invention of the radio, there are still people who will believe anything." (Merci beaucoup a Robert Fischer pour l'histoire de l'Agence France Presse.)
Efforts to search a cave in Brazil's Serra do Espinhaco mountains for a Chupacabra have ended for the time being.
The cave, located on a mountaintop near Baldim, Minas Gerais, a small city on the Rio das Velhas 110 kilometers (66 miles) north of Belo Horizonte, was the site of the reported encounter between three spelunkers and a "weird animal, the size of a large dog."
Having made a tentative descent into the cave earlier in October, ufologist Vittorio Paccacini, author of INCIDENTE EM VARGINHA, returned to the cave on Saturday, October 17, 1998. But his planned party of ten explorers was not willing to make the descent.
"When I got there, I found that this group was not ready to go," Paccacini reported, "No adequate equipment (helmets, lights, etc.) Most of the people there didn't feel comfortable with the idea of returning to the halls of that cave."
So the cave expedition was canceled.
Three days earlier, Pacaccini had met with his lawyer, who, he said, "alerted me to the complications/responsibilities I'd have if somebody got hurt on this expedition."
In addition to possible legal liabilities, Paccacini reported that he was contacted by Manuel Uchoa and the other two spelunkers who reportedly saw the cave creature.
"They didn't like the fact that the pictures had already circulated in many UFO webpages and in many Internet UFO news services, as well."
"I'll have to wait a little longer to see what can be done, to be sure about the picture," Paccacini added. "I also know where to find it (the cave), of course, but I can only do something in accordance with the witnesses...For me, unfortunately, I'll have to hold my horses. Needless to tell how frustrating this is." (Muito obrigado a Vittorio Paccacini por eso caso.)
1940: LAST CRUISE OF THE WILLIAM B. DAVOCK
Of all the stories associated with the Lake Michigan Triangle, the case of the oreboat William B. Davock is certainly one of the strangest.
On November 7, 1940, the Davock sailed out of Erie, Pennsylvania, westbound for Chicago with a load of coal. The ship had a crew of 31 aboard, with a surprising number of the men hailing from Ashtabula, Ohio, another port on Lake Erie.
The Davock had a routine trip to Detroit, then headed north across Lake Huron and sailed through the Straits of Mackinac into Lake Michigan.
At 12 noon on November 10, 1940, the Davock was seen entering Lake Michigan by observers onshore at Mackinac City, Mich. At 12:15 p.m., her skipper, Captain Charles W. Allen, sent out a routine radio message.
That was the Davock's last contact with the outside world. Shore radio stations attempting to contact her during that afternoon and evening reached nothing but static.
The following afternoon, November 11, 1940, Lake Michigan was swept by a ferocious blizzard. This "Armistice Day storm" killed hundreds of people in the USA's Midwest, and a few ships foundered on the Great Lakes.
By the time the blizzard began, the Davock should have been safe in her berth in South Chicago. But there had been no word from the vessel for 24 hours.
Then the bodies began washing ashore.
"From a point a mile or two above Pentwater to the beach north of Ludington, they wandered in amidst a clutter of life rings, broken lifeboats, oars, cabin doors, fragments of furniture... young deckhands James Saunders and his buddy Sterling Wood, second mate John Wiesen, first mate Charles Price, wheelmen Andy Stiffler and Walter Kiewece, and watchmen James Bowman, Lawrence Bleshoy and Martin Chambers."
"Walking for miles, they (searchers) found both of the Davock's lifeboats, one damaged, the other intact but full of water. Tarpaulins, parts of what had once been an icebox, a section of the captain's desk" and Capt. Allen's prize possession, his brand-new wicker chair.
The dead men of the Davock were laid to rest at Ludington's Lakeview Cemetery.
The Coast Guard assumed that the Davock and another steamer, the Anna C. Minch, had been thrown together by the mountainous seas of the blizzard. They theorized that the Davock had cleaved the Minch's hull in half and had then limped away, to sink elsewhere on Lake Michigan.
But then, in May 1972, divers discovered "the Davock's hull, upside down in 304 feet of water, off Little Sable Point" near Ludington. Working from a former fishing tug equipped with sonar and other sophisticated gear, divers Kent Bellrichard, John Steele and William Cohen explored the hull briefly but could find no evidence of collision...The divers found the Davock's rudder cramped hard to port, as though she too were trying to fighter her way out of a valley between monstrous seas."
Or perhaps trying to get away from something.
The mystery persists. Where was the Davock during the twenty-four hours prior to the arrival of the Armistice Day storm? Why didn't Capt. Allen erect an emergency radio mast? Or simply send a gig ashore to Ludington? What was the vessel doing just off Little Sable Point, east of its intended route to Chicago?
Ludington, of course, has long been rumored to be the nexus of the Lake Michigan Triangle. The Davock is just one of the many large ships that have sunk under mysterious circumstances within earshot of Ludington's automated lighthouse. (See STRANGE ADVENTURES OF THE GREAT LAKES by Dwight Boyer, Freshwater Press Inc., Cleveland, Ohio, 1974, pages 100 to 104, and THE GREAT LAKES TRIANGLE by Jay Gourley, Fawcett Crest Books, Greenwich, Conn., 1977, page 86.)
FUN UFO WEBSITES:
The video of the three Cleveland UFOs is now a Quicktime movie, Rev. John Tenney of Michigan Anumalous Information Network informs me. You need 5 megabytes to view it. See the movie at http://members.tripod.com/~main.org
Ignatius Graffeo managed to download much of the material on the EQ Pegasi website before it was replaced with the NSA seal. He invites people to view it at his mirror site at this URL: http://members.aol.com/ufoseek/CapeCanaveralHall7193/
Malaysian UFO Network now has its own site. Check them out at http://www.malaysians.com/myufonet
Don't miss our parent site, UFOINFO, with its wide array of saucer source material. Drop in at http://ufoinfo.com
Back issues of UFO Roundup can be accessed, read and downloaded at our webpage. Feel free to browse anytime at this URL: http://ufoinfo.com/roundup
Some week, eh? We'll be back in seven days with the latest in saucer news from around the globe, plus continuing coverage of the growing EQ Pegasi contact controversy, brought to you as always by "the paper that goes home-- UFO Roundup." See you then.
UFO ROUNDUP: Copyright 1998 by Masinaigan Productions, all rights reserved. Readers may post news items from UFO Roundup on their websites or in newsgroups provided that they credit the newsletter and its editor by name and list the date of issue in which the item first appeared.