UFO SPAWNS A TORNADO AT A NAVAL BASE IN ARGENTINA
"Strange phenomena was reported yesterday (i.e. Tuesday, January 18, 2000) at the Puerto Belgrano naval base" in Argentina.
"Corroborating accounts, such as the one from retired sailor Marcos Herminio Faini indicated the presence of a shiny object at an estimated altitude of 2,000 meters (6,600 feet) and simultaneously the presence of a powerful whirlind on the (ground) surface below."
Puerto Belgrano is located on Argenitna's South Atlantic shore about 600 kilometers (360 miles) south of Buenos Aires, the national capital.
The weather station at Commandante Espora Air Base, operated by the Fuerzas Aereas de Argentina (Argentinian Air Force--J.T.). stated that atmospheric conditions at the time were not conducive to the formation of tornados. "Visibility was at 20 kilometers (12 miles) and barely noticeable winds with speeds ranging from 7 to 11 kilometers per hour."
"'No anomalies were detected,' stated Capt. Ricardo Legron in a brief Navy communique, who considered that the object may have been a 'weather satellite' despite the fact that the authorities at Espora told the newspapers that such launches no longer take place."
A "self-proclaimed skeptic of flying saucer tales, UFO sightings and such phenomena," retired Jefe de Flota (Chief of the Fleet, a rank comparable to Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy--J.T.) Faini was quoted as saying, "Look, I know people will call me a hoaxer. But I can tell you that after spending half my life at sea, I have seen something very special which I believe to be of scientific value."
"Faini took a bus from the Micro Omnibus Punta Alta line about 12:45 p.m. from Mitre," the newspaper La Nueva Provincia reported. "Seated in the second row, next to the window, he was startled by a whirlwind on the ground above the future Fleet Junior Officers School now being built."
"'The whirlwind was concentric and wasn't moving. Completely out of the ordinary.' he stated."
"'When I visually tried to locate the column of dust, I noticed a glowing object stationary in the southeast. I showed it to the sergeant in charge of the (base) hospital's military command."
"'It's a flying saucer,' he replied laconically, and the other passengers stared at it, as well. More curiosity seekers joined the group. The object showed some slight movement, always in the same direction."
Faini, 63, was born in Argentina's Entre Rios province and retired from the Navy in 1983. During his career, he served aboard the torpedo boats San Luis and Buenos Aires, the tugboat Ranquel, the icebreaker General San Martin, the frigate Libertad, the cruiser General Belgrano and the aircraft carrier 25 de Mayo. (See the Argenitnian newspaper La Nueva Provincia for January 19, 2000, "Testimony of a former sailor: Strange flying object startles observers at Puerto Belgrano; powerful whirlwind and brilliant sphere seen yesterday." Many thanks to Scott Corrales, author of Chupacabras and Other Mysteries for forwarding this newspaper article.)
CROWDS SIGHT OVAL UFO OVER ACAPULCO
On Tuesday evening, January 18, 2000, residents of Acapulco, a popular resort and Pacific Ocean port in Mexico's state of Guerrero, "are saying that they saw an OVNI (Spanish acronym for UFO--J.T.), according to the testimonoies of the eyewitnesses"
The witnesses described the OVNI as "kind of bright and ovulated," adding that "it was seen for seven minutes flying over the city with highly quick and strange movements."
"The OVNI made circles in the night sky, leaving a flash of green and yellow light behind as a kind of trail."
A spokesman for Aeropuerto Internacional de Acapulco stated that their radar operators "have seen nothing out of the ordinary" and "had no flights over the area at that time."
Acapulco is located 427 kilometers (265 miles) west of Mexico City, the national capital. (Muchas gracias a Guillermo Alarcon para esta historia.)
MYSTERY METEOR EXPLODES NORTH OF SKAGWAY, ALASKA
"A meteor exploded over the mountains of southern Yukon Territory," Canada, on Tuesday, January 18, 2000 at 8:43 a.m., "shaking houses and providing residents of the remote region with a dazzling light show, the Geologic Survey of Canada said."
"The meteor is believed to have exploded in the atmosphere midway between Carcross, Yukon Territory, Canada (population 190) and Skagway, Alaska, USA (population 692).
Eyewitnesses "'described it as sheet-lightning like and they turned around and there was a large green object going through the sky,' said Garry Rogers of the Pacific Geosciences Center in Sidney, B.C." (British Columbia, Canada--J.T.)
"Witnesses is Carcross said the explosion rattled windows and shook snow from roofs in the small village about 120 kilometers (90 miles) north of Juneau (Alaska, USA), according to Rogers."
"No injuries or damage were reported...The explosion was detected by at least three of the agency's seismic monitoring stations in the region."
The explosion was also detected by several USA Department of Defense (DOD) satellites. They detected the impact of a meteoroid near Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, Canada. The object detonated at an altitude of 25 kilometers (15 miles) at 60.25 degrees North Latitude, 134.65 degrees West Longitude. Optical (satellite) sensors detected the event at 8:43 a.m."
Whitehorse is 240 kilometers (150 miles) north of Skagway, which is about 125 miles (200 kilometers) northwest of Juneau, the state capital of Alaska. (Many thanks to Errol Bruce-Knapp and Bob Young for this news story.)
ANOTHER UFO REPORTED NEAR BANGOR, MAINE
On Saturday, January 8, 2000, Jean C. was driving alone in her car, "heading north on (Interstate Highway) I-95 around 9:30 p.m. from work in Brewer, Me. (population 9,021), a town four miles (7 kilometers) south of Bangor.
"I spotted a yellowish-orange light in a stationary position about three miles beyond the Stillwater exit off to my right. It was near or around the vicinity of Stillwater Lumber. I spotted the light through the trees just before I got to the clearing. I was having trouble with my car, so I did not dare stop as I had a ways to go and was traveling alone." (Email Form Report)
TWO RED UFOs SEEN IN VIRGINIA BEACH, VIRGINIA
On Friday, January 21, 2000, at 11:15 p.m., Lisa B. "left my friend's house and walked across the street to my house. I looked up at the sky to see the lunar eclipse. As I was looking away, I saw two moving lights (red or dusty rose in color-- L.B.) I thought maybe it was two falling stars, but the size was too large and the color wasn't right. They were moving parallel to each other with the top one moving faster.. Then they looped and came close to each other, looped back out, and when they came closer together the second time, they disappeared."
"My husband and friends decided that it had to be military-related," Lisa added, "Which I am believing for the sake of my sanity and peace of mind."
Virginia Beach (population 303,069) is located 105 miles (168 kilometers) southeast of Richmond, the state capital. (Email Interview) (Editor's Note: Virginia Beach is also the world headquarters of the Association for Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E.), the non-profit foundation created by psychic Edgar Cayce.)
SILENT DELTA-SHAPED UFO SEEN IN ALLIANCE, TEXAS
On Friday, January 21, 2000, Alice C. was standing outdoors in Alliance, Texas, near Dallas and Fort Worth. "I was standing outside facing east just as the lunar eclipse was to begin when a Stealth-shaped object skimmed south to north, just above the treetops, following a creekbed to the east of my house."
"The object stood out because it was moving, and it was darker than the dark itself. It appeared to be about the size of a flattened mid-sized car and had lights in the back."
"I am hoping that someone else to the south or north saw it, before or after I did. We live just south of the Alliance airport, west of Dallas-Fort Worth so airplanes are a constant. So is the noise they make. But this (object) was totally silent." (Email Interview)
UFOs SIGHTED NEAR ROME AND IN THE ALPSOn Wednesday, January 12, 2000, at 5:30 p.m., hundreds of motorists on the Autostrada (Highway) A-1 on the outskirts of Rome, Italy's capital, were stunned to see a UFO in the sky overhead.
"Hundreds of eyewitnesses traveling on the Autostrada A-1 from Nazzano Romano and Fiona Romano sighted 'a circular luminous object' and immediately afterward 'a cylinder of light positioned in the sky.' The motorists observed the phenomenon for several minutes."
On Thursday, December 30, 1999, a family of tourists from Venezia (Venice) was vacationing in Italy's Aosta province when they spotted a UFO. The family was in Champoluc, a village in the Alps near the border with France. "A luminous sphere was seen in the sky over Champoluc by the family. The object was also seen and reported by the Carabineri (Italian national police--J.T.)." (See the Italian newspapers Il Messaggero for January 13 and 14, 2000; Corriete di Rieti and Corriete di Viterbo for January 14, 2000. Grazie a Edoardo Russo, Sveva Stallone e Massimo Valloscuro di Centro Italiano di Studi Ufologici per questi rapporti.)
SOUTH PACIFIC UFO APPEARS OVER NEW GEORGIA
On Tuesday, December 28, 1999, a UFO, which was described as "a rotating unidentified object," appeared over the port of Noro on New Georgia Island in the South Pacific.
"The object appeared quite light at first, though it looked like shiny glass in the sky. After some minutes, it passed through some clouds and then appeared to be 'a solid ship.' Weather conditions in Noro were "fine with some cloud."
New Georgia is in the Solomon Islands and lies about 300 kilometers (180 miles) northwest of Honiara, the national capital, which is located on Guadalcanal Island. (See the Solomon Star for Thursday, January 6, 2000, page 1. Many thanks to Ross Dowe, director of Australia's National Space Centre for this news story.)
(Editor's Note: New Georgia Island was the scene of heavy fighting in January 1943, at the height of World War II.)
At the end of last month, UFO Roundup invited readers to share any premonitions they might have had about the New Millenium.
Well, we got no takers. But your editor did have a couple of strange dreams during the month of January 2000. Both dreams featured Tackanash, an elderly Anishinabe man who has popped up in my dreams at odd intervals throughout my life.
Unlike December's dream, this time there was no Cahokia, no Wyoming sun dance and, thankfully, no bombs in New York City. But one chilling sequence repeated itself-- twice!
The first dream occurred on Monday, January 10, 2000. I dreamed it was a cold day with a light and bright overcast here in Duluth. It was cold, but there was no snow on the ground, a condition that suggests a day in November rather than March.
Tackanash, dressed for powwow, and I walked into the red brick Walgreen's pharmacy at the corner of Superior Street and 13th Avenue East. I looked for the Chicago Tribune but that shelf was empty. It was a typical morning at the pharmacy--clerks ringing up purchases and shoppers wandering up and down the aisles. Stopping at the candy display, I turned to Tackanash and said, "Want some M & M's, Nimishoo?" (Anishinabe for Grandfather--J.T.)
He crooked his index finger impatiently. "Come over here, Masinaigan. Hurry!"
Curious, I joined him and peered out the glass- enclosed doorway. Lake Superior was clearly visible about a quarter-mile south of us. I saw a few whitecap waves out on the Big Lake.
All of a sudden, a giant wave appeared in the southeast. Swiftly it blotted out my view of the Wisconsin shore and grew larger and larger. Impossibly large! Fifty or sixty feet, at least. To my horror, I realized that it was coming straight towards shore--straight towards us!
Tackanash and I backpedaled away from the doorway. Seconds later, the wave struck. The brick building rocked on its foundations. People began screaming. Horrified, I glanced at the door. Roiling waters rose up the glass until it was completely submerged..
The walls held! I thought, But the door is only reinforced glass--.
Before I could finish the thought, the glass exploded under the incredible water pressure. A jet of lakewater six feet high cascaded into the pharmacy, knocking over displays, pushing tables aside, sweeping goods from the shelves.
Grabbing Tackanash's shoulder, I shouted, "This way, Nimishoo!"
I led him out the store's back entrance, into a small parking area. We plunged into eddying thigh-deep floodwaters. I let out a yell. That water was cold!
Somehow I managed to clamber up over the stone retaining wall and, soaking wet, gave Tackanash a helping hand. Together we dashed across First Street into the woods beside the Dental Associates building, with the icy water lapping at our ankles.
Tackanash grabbed my right arm and pulled me after him, making his way up and out of the creekbed. "No, boy, this way!"
I frowned. "I have a name, Nimishoo."
"Hush, Masinaigan. Save your breath for climbing."
We weren't the only ones climbing. Two dozen panicky pedestrians were also running uphill. I glanced over my shoulder. Lakewater poured over First Street, drowning the front steps of the old brownstone houses. The Miller-Dwan Medical Center looked like an island sitting out in the middle of the lake.
At last we reached Fourth Street. We began to shiver in our wet clothes. I stopped at the driveway of an 1890s home. A very anxious man was carrying a box full of canned goods to his waiting sport utility vehicle.
"Excuse me," I said, briskly rubbing my damp arms. "Can we use your fireplace to dry our clothes?"
"Do whatever you like," he replied, eyes wide with fear. "I'm getting the hell out of here!"
And I woke up.
The second dream occurred one week later, on January 17, 2000, and it was much shorter.
I dreamed that Tackanash and I were standing on a stony outcrop with a panoramic view of Lake Superior. I looked around in puzzlement. I didn't recognize the spot, but it sure looked like North Shore boreal forest to me.
Down below was an inlet surrounded on both sides by balsam and tamarack forest. Four boats were at anchor there, and everyone in the boats had a fishing pole. Again, the scene had a November feel with its overcast sky, a bit darker than the one in my previous dream.
Blinking in confusion, I asked, "Where are we, Nimishoo?"
"Rainbow Creek," he said.
And then I heard a booming surf sound. Turning lakeward, I spied a big wave coming ashore. It was nowhere near as large as the ones in my previous dreams. This one was about 25 feet high. It smashed against the rocky shore and flooded the inlet, capsizing all four of the boats. All of the fishermen had life preservers, so they popped back to the surface. But they were carried upriver by the surge of lakewater, which flooded the woods on both sides.
And I woke up.
Tackanash's phrase stuck in my mind. Rainbow Creek. It didn't sound familiar. Just to make sure, I checked a map of northern Minnesota. Nope, no Rainbow Creek emptying into Lake Superior.
However, I was sure that I'd been looking at Lake Superior's North Shore. After twenty years of vacationing up here and a year in residence, I know the shore. So I dug up a map of Canada's Ontario province at the Duluth Public Library. And whattaya know--there's Rainbow Creek, just east of Schreiber, Ontario, a Superior shore town I've never been to.
It seems like an "impossible" event--a tsunami or tidal wave on Lake Superior. But now I'm wondering if it might actually happen. Perhaps a poweful earthquake, centered in either the eastern end of Michigan's Upper Peninsula or Ontario's "Algoma Country" between Wawa, Ont. and Sault Sainte Marie, Ont., might trigger such an event.
That makes three times now I've dreamed of a Lake Superior tidal wave. If dreams really are prophetic, and it does happen someday, I have two predictions.
(1) It will happen on an overcast morning in November.
(2) About 300 miles of the lake's North Shore will be hit hard.
from the UFO Files...
1949: LET'S DO IT AGAIN--THE STAR ARIEL
On Monday, January 17, 1949, the British South American Airways (BSSA) airliner Star Ariel revved up her four propellor engines on the runway in Hamilton, Bermuda, ready to take off for the rest of her flight to Santiago de Chile.
Anyone who'd been in Hamilton a year earlier, on January 30, 1948, might be experiencing some deja vu. For it was on that night that Star Ariel's sister airliner, the Star Tiger, vanished while approaching Bermuda from the northeast. (For more on the Star Tiger, see UFO Roundup, volume 5, number 3.)
Like the Star Tiger, the Star Ariel was an "Avro, Tudor IV, Post War pressurized cabin Luxury Airliner." The aircraft had the same four propellor engines and wings used by the RAF's Lancaster bomber in World War II. Her builder, A.V. Roe & Company, had redesigned the wartime Lancaster's fuselage, making it larger and more spacious.
Unlike her sister airliner, the Star Ariel did not have a full complement of 33 passengers on board. The Star Ariel "was carrying only 12 passengers and a crew of six," including Captain J.C. McPhee, First Officer F. Dauncey, Second Officer V. Shapley, Radio Operator G. Rettie, Steward K. Coleman and Stewardess J. Moxon.
Promptly at 7:42 a.m. on January 17, 1949, the Star Ariel rolled down the Hamilton runway. Captain McPhee eased back on the yoke, and the Tudor began its climbout, starting her six-hour, 1,000-mile flight to Kingston, Jamaica.
One hour into the flight, Captain McPhee picked up his microphone and said, "Hamilton Control, this is Star Ariel. I am switching radio frequencies to Kingston Control, over."
"Roger, Star Ariel. We are handing off to Kingston. Have a nice flight. Over and out."
The Star Ariel's estimated time of arrival in Jamaica was 1:42 p.m. The Tudor's fuel tanks had enough aviation gasoline to fly for ten hours. No more.
Captain McPhee's routine call was the last anyone ever heard from the Star Ariel. The propellor-engine airliner was never seen again.
At 5:42 p.m., with Star Ariel's fuel tanks apparently dry, the U.S. Coast Guard declared the airliner to be "missing" and organized a comprehensive air-sea search to begin at dawn on January 18, 1949.
"Meanwhile, just before dusk, a U.S. Army plane from Kindley Field, Bermuda made a sweep of the area of the Tudor's last reported position, without sighting anything."
At 3 a.m., a U.S. Air Force B-29 bomber took off from MacDill Field in Florida, kicking off the search. Next, at 5 a.m., a USAF B-17 bomber lifted off the runway, heading for Bermuda.
The U.S. Coast Guard sent rescue planes into the area from its bases in Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina and Florida. "By high noon, the Coast Guard announced that 72 search planes, many ships and approximately 13,000 men were actively engaged in the hunt for life."
The U.S. Navy sent an entire task force to join the search. Included were the battleship USS Missouri, the aircraft carriers USS Leyte and USS Kearsarge and six destroyers.
In Havana, President Carlos Prio Socarras announced that the Cuban Air Force would also join the hunt for the missing Star Ariel.
Even if Captain McPhee had been forced to ditch the airliner in the ocean, the searchers were confident of finding survivors. "The Tudor IV had five emergency exits, carried three large dinghies, one fitted with a radio transmitter, and life belts were stowed under the passenger seats and in the crew's compartment."
"As the days passed without finding a trace of the Star Ariel, the U.S. Air Force added 16 more planes," including "12 B-29s, two (PBY-2) Catalina flying boats, and two B-17s from the United States."
A valiant effort, but it was all in vain. There was no sign of a downed airliner. Or the yellow inflatable dinghies. Or even a debris field..
And then, during the early morning hours of January 20, 1949, nearly three days after the Star Ariel's engines had run dry, the pilot of a BSSA four-propellor-engine Constellation airliner "reported that he twice saw lights on the water," at low altitude. "the (Connie) crew said the light was seen 300 miles (480 kilometers) southwest of Bermuda."
The U.S. Air Force discounted their claim of seeing "mysterious lights" over that stretch of ocean and "added that search craft had been out flying wingtip to wingtip in the reported area," both above and below the clouds, "but had not sighted anything."
As with her sister, the Star Tiger, no trace of the Star Ariel was ever found. Intriguingly, she had gone missing exactly 13 days before the first anniversary of the Star Tiger's disappearance.
On December 20, 1949, nearly a year later, the UK Ministry of Civil Aviation issued its final report on the strange case of the Star Ariel.
Air Commodore Vernon Brown, Chief Inspector of Air Accidents, wrote, "Through lack of evidence due to no wreckage having been found, the cause of the accident to the Star Ariel is unknown."
"The Star Ariel was lost almost exactly a year after a sister aircraft, the Star Tiger, had disappeared in much the same area and in equally mysterious circumstances."
Today, a half-century later, the disappearances of the Star Tiger and the Star Ariel almost exactly a year apart remain among the strangest events in the lore of UFOs. (See the book Limbo of the Lost by John Wallace Spencer, Bantam Books, New York, N.Y., 1973, pages 34 to 41.)
We'll be back next week with more UFO and paranormal news from around the planet, brought to you by "the paper that goes home--UFO Roundup. See you then.
UFO ROUNDUP: Copyright 2000 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.