Mystery of the month: Roswell
Was there really an alien autopsy at Roswell?
Think UFOS, and chances are that the Roswell case springs to mind. Roswell has been described as ‘the world’s most famous, most exhaustively investigated, and most thoroughly debunked UFO claim’ of all time. But has it been totally debunked? Let’s take a look…
In 1947, the media reported that a ‘flying disc’ had crashed in the desert near Roswell, in New Mexico, USA. The debris was found by a man called William Brazel, who was working on a nearby ranch. He described it to local paper the Roswell Daily Record as ‘a large area of bright wreckage made up of rubber
strips, tinfoil, and rather tough paper, and sticks.’ It was delivered to the Roswell Army Airbase for inspection.
Just as public speculation was mounting that the weird debris was, in fact, a crashed alien spaceship, the US military released a statement to say that it was just a weather balloon. End of story. …Or so it should have been. For 31 years, the story was largely forgotten. But by the 1970s, fascination with aliens was in full swing, and in 1978, US newspaper The National Enquirer took it upon itself to re-print the original story from the Roswell Daily Record. Record Soon, theories suggesting that the ‘weather balloon’ had been a government conspiracy to cover up the discovery of an alien spacecraft began to circulate. Many people who’d lived at or near Roswell at the time of the incident claimed to have seen the debris. One witness claimed to have seen a flaming spacecraft crashing down from the sky. Then, in 1989, a former mortician called Glenn Dennis said that a friend, Naomi Maria Self, who’d worked as a
nurse at Roswell Army Air Field had participated in the autopsy of three alien bodies. He said she was transferred to England where she was killed in a military plane crash. However, no record could be found of a nurse called Naomi Maria Self, nor evidence of the crash that had killed her.
By now, fascination with Roswell had reached fever pitch. In 1995, a man named Ray Santilli claimed to have authentic film footage of the Roswell alien autopsy, allegedly supplied to him by a retired military cameraman who wished to remain anonymous. It was immediately vilified as a hoax, and indeed, in 2006, Santilli admitted it had been staged – although he insisted it was based on a genuine first
hand witness account of what had happened that day.
In 1994, the US military admitted that the debris Brazel found came from a balloon which was part of an experimental military testing programme called Project Mogul. In the 1940s, Russia and the USA were in the middle of the Cold War, and the USA sent up high altitude balloons to spy on Russia’s nuclear missile building capacity. The technology was quickly abandoned by the military but remained secret for 20 years – which was why they couldn’t admit what the ‘UFO’ really was in 1947. A second report released in 1997 stated that the so-called ‘alien bodies’ were actually life-sized anthropomorphic test dummies
Although the US government hoped their detailed analysis would put an end to speculation about Roswell, the opposite happened - it merely inflamed the situation and led to further conspiracy theories which are still circulating to this day!