Several years ago the SyFy Channel, with the aid of former President Clinton's Chief of Staff John Podesta, started a campaign to release government documents on the UFO subject.
The formation of the Coalition for Freedom of Information (CFI) resulted from this effort. CFI solicited proposals for UFO documents in government custody that with research efforts or legal action might be obtained within about one year. CFI gave a very short deadline for the proposal and in the end adopted no elements from this submission. Below is the proposal The Sign Historical Group submitted with some slight modifications and updates which are shown in brackets. 
Official US UFO documents over 60 years old continue to be withheld from the public. We have listed some here, but we know there are many more discussed elsewhere. Here are a number of projects to locate and obtain such documents, and proposals for related research and compiling histories about the subjects covered by such documents.
We welcome discussion and further suggestions for this and other possible research along these lines at Project1947@earthlink.net.
Attached is a draft proposal for conducting historical research into the UFO phenomenon, as discussed. The proposal is broken down into three separate projects.
1. HQ/USAF files and FOIA search.
2. Historical Archives search.
3. Writing proposals.
All of these projects and some of the identified tasks are interrelated and generally focus on early Intelligence involvement concerning the UFO issue. Further, these tasks are concerned with aspects of the history that have not been sufficiently researched and expounded previously. In this respect, it would broaden our understanding of the political and institutional responses to the phenomenon at the onset, when policies were formulated in dealing with the problem. This information would be invaluable for clarifying the sometimes sketchy, often misinterpreted and always-incomplete history of UFOs in modern times.
Also, it should be noted that this effort would be supported by the resources and experienced individuals associated with Project 1947 and the Sign Historical Group. Collectively, we maintain some of the most extensive collections of historical materials pertinent to UFO history. See for example: http://www.project1947.com/shg/resource.htm
The objective of this effort is to locate the UFO-related records that were created, collected and maintained at Air Force headquarters during the time that the Air Force's UFO investigation program existed, from 1947 through 1970.
In the mid-1970s, the Air Force transferred to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) the Project Blue Book investigative case files that had been maintained by the Foreign Technology Division (FTD) at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. That transfer of Project Blue Book files did not include any of the UFO-related files that were maintained by the command level at HQ USAF in the Pentagon.
For the period from 1947 to approximately June 1966, Air Force Intelligence at HQ USAF (HQ USAF/IN) was the organizational entity that had primary responsibility for the Air Force's UFO investigation program. FTD, and its predecessors, would have been responsible for carrying out any policies that had been formulated at HQ USAF/IN. In June of 1966, primary responsibility for the Air Force's UFO investigation program was transferred from HQ USAF/IN to the office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Research & Development (HQ USAF/RD), although it is almost certain that Air Force Intelligence retained a healthy interest in the subject right up to the end of the Air Force's UFO investigation program in 1970.
We expect the records that were maintained at HQ USAF to include a large volume of correspondence files pertaining to individual UFO sightings, as well as correspondence dealing with the formulation and implementation of policy matters as they related to the Air Force's UFO investigation program. Among the HQ USAF/RD records we seek are the record copy of the staff study referred to as the Bolender memo, and its sixteen attachments. The Air Force Cambridge Research Laboratory (AFCRL) was responsible for Project Twinkle, and the project files have never surfaced publicly. Also, there is reliable testimony that in August 1948, the Technical Intelligence Division at Wright-Patterson and Project Sign drafted a formal 'Estimate of the Situation'. The Estimate was a top-secret document concluding that UFOs were of interplanetary origin. At the time, Air Force Chief of Staff General Hoyt S. Vandenburg promptly rejected the Estimate of the Situation.
The records we seek almost certainly are located among the administrative and organizational records both HQ USAF/IN and HQ USAF/RD retired to NARA records centers over the years. [In 1984, Robert Todd stumbled onto nearly 2,000 pages of decimal correspondence files on "Flying Discs" that had been retired by the Air Force's Director of Intelligence (D/I). These decimal correspondence files were apparently culled out of the larger D/I collection of records that we will be searching for].
*[Until the formation of Air Technical Intelligence Center (ATIC) in 1951, the technical intelligence element at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, T-2 and later Technical Intelligence Division was under the command authority of Air Materiel Command (AMC). AMC, conducted both research and development and logistic functions. It would be expected that documents related to UFOs would therefore be found in AMC command channels and in Research and Development channels in addition to intelligence staff channels. This proved to be the case in a small number of cases, but it would seem profitable to further research the command channels for missing documents in early UFO history.]
The first step in this effort will involve attempts to identify all the records that have been retired by HQ USAF/IN and HQ USAF/RD.
Each NARA records center maintains what is called the Accession Number Master List ("Master List" hereafter), which lists in very general terms the records that have been transferred to their center by various government agencies. We will need copies of those portions of the Master List for the Washington National Records Center (WNRC) and the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC).
The record group numbers of primary interest to us are the following:
The information on the Master List pertaining to each individual accession is quite limited, however, and using that number, we can obtain the shipping documents (SF-135s, "Records Transmittal and Receipt") that furnish more details than the Master List. With access to the shipping documents, we should be able to identify some of the
UFO-related files we hope to find.
[It might require submitting FOIA requests to gain access to the shipping documents, but they should be relatively easy for Archives personnel to find. If the shipping documents are for records accessions that are housed at the WNRC, we could ask that those documents be made available for inspection at the WNRC. This would avoid the cost of copying the records and having them delivered via the U.S. Mail].
In some instances, we should be able to identify UFO-related files at the file folder level, based on the information contained in the shipping documents. In other cases, we might not be able to break out specific UFO-related information, which might require us to conduct document-by-document searches of the retired files. This can be tricky, since the records are still in the legal custody of the originating agency and it is likely that many of the retired records remain classified at some level. We could ask the Air Force to retrieve the records of possible interest to us, and then request that they search those records for UFO-related documents.
Additional research will have to be done to develop methods for identifying records that have been transferred to the legal custody of the Archives, but have not yet been processed by the Archives for access to researchers. The Master Lists contain only those records that remain in the legal custody of the originating agencies. While we know of no comparable list for records that have been transferred into the Archives' legal custody, such a listing must exist in some form. Additionally, other SF 135s that indicate that UFO documents were transferred to National Archives can be identified.
Task 1: Find Gun Camera films of UFOs.
Gun Camera films are known to exist on several cases and a list needs to be compiled. Bellefontaine, Ohio case had several stills of g/c films released to True Magazine. Wisconsin film is dark. Remarkable Arizona g/c films for 1953 is unknown and in Barry Greenwood's possession. Shown on NOVA, they gave no details and only used it as a curiosity.
[Several other incidents concerning gun camera films are mentioned in Blue Book records or by former Air Force officers.]
The details of Project Pounce and possible results could also be added to this item.
Task 2: Other significant films analyzed by the government:
Task 2a: White Sands Tracking Films of UFOs.
Mentioned by Ruppelt and in White Sands documents. They are important because they establish height, size, and speed by triangulation.
[The data reduction analysis of these films have been found and do not indicate the possibility of triangulation. Speeds and altitudes are estimates only.]
Task 2b: Ralph Mayher Film (1952).
Air Force and CIA involved here. Mayher now lives in Costa Rica. Independent analysis of the film is available. Official analysis has not been found yet.
Task 2c: Drury Film, Australia.
Taken by Australian Aviation officials and turned over to AF. CIA said to be involved. USAF stonewalled on this. Australian UFO researchers have done extensive research and writing on this film.
[Fred Durant, III, said he did not see this film at the CIA during his tenure there. The Project Blue Book file on this case is incomplete.]
Task 2d. Project Twinkle records/films.
Mentioned in Ruppelt and in White Sands documents regarding the widespread reports of unexplained "green fireballs" seen over sensitive military installations. USAF has stonewalled on these. They are important because they establish height, size, and speed by triangulation
Task 2e. Tuscaloosa, Alabama, 29 January, 1954.
Glenn Hovland of Winzer Research, a Navy contractor, took a film of six UFOs while engaged in aerial tracking. The camera on the balloon also took photographs of the balloon. The Air Force took Hovland’s film. The Project Blue Book files have a comment that the Navy was analyzing the film. No further information.
Task 3: Find and re-examine significant films mentioned in the UFO literature.
Task 3a. The Norwood, Ohio, 1949 searchlight case.
Was submitted for official analysis, but its current whereabouts is unknown.
Task 3b. Great Falls Montana, 1950, missing footage
Frames of film were removed twice while the Mariana film was in government hands.
Task 3c. Tremonton, Utah, UFO film discrepancies
How can the significant differences of the 1952 Utah film in Project Blue Book files and the version shown in the movie “U. F. O.” be accounted for when viewed together.
Task 4: Make a list of all films and photographs allegedly turned over the government and either missing or not acknowledged to be in official hands.
Task 5: Exact a list of all known films and photographs in official files.
The Photocat compiled by Sr. Vicente-Juan Ballester Olmos could probably be used as a starting point to compile such a list.
Task 6: Navy UFO Project(s?).
There is no question this project existed in 1952, but what they did and where the records are is not known.
The Navy’s National Security responsibilities also mean that unidentified submerged objects (USO) are in their area of interest.
[Perhaps there were several research efforts within the Navy Department, the 1952 Office of Intelligence formal UFO projects, but also other work by Office of Naval Research and Bureau of Aeronautics.]
Task 7: Navy UFO/USO Reports (Office of Naval Intelligence, Bureau of Aeronautics, etc.)
Several bureaus and offices within the Navy were involved at one time or another with Ghost rockets or UFOs. The Bureau of Aeronautics contained some of the technical intelligence assets of the Navy.
Listing of submarine reports include those which were completely unidentified or other than biological (mainly whales), allied and other countries submarine, unidentified submarines and other unidentified objects.
Task 7a: Hydrographic Office Reports Files.
There are UFO reports here. The successor agency stopped publishing them, but are they still coming in? We need to look at records 1946 – present. Records for 1883-1909 and indices for 1934-1945 have already been screened
Task 7b: Ship Logs of sightings (US Navy and US Coast Guard).
Ships logs do not have very good results, 65 known or suspected UFO sightings aboard Navy ships. Of 65 logs for ships which had official UFO reports or for which witnesses claimed sightings were made, screening yielded only one UFO report for sure and two unusual contacts (no details). Ships' operational logs, CIC logs, and ships' diaries would probably be better sources for such reports.
[Task 7c: Make an inventory of all Navy investigations and UFO reports including those after Project Blue Book was closed.]
[Antonio F. Rullan has made a partial listing of Navy MERINT UFO cases and other sightings during deep ocean operations. Also, Carl Feindt maintains a website http://www.waterufo.net which lists many Navy and other UFO sightings over water.]
[A memo from Robert Low of the Condon Committee indicates that some investigators were attempting to find UFO reports from the Navy. However, they were told to stop and begin the write up of findings before this research bore any fruit.]
[A list of UFO and unusual USO reports in Project Blue Book files and other official documents has been initiated. Also, a vast reservoir of press reports, individual sightings, tales and rumors. Some unsupported stories and rumors after years have proven true with the release of new official documents. One such example concerns stories of Navy patrols and encounters over Hanford, Wa., during World War II. Recently recovered 4th Air Forces documents revealed some support for these stories.]
Introduction to listing of Navy and other government maritime services UFO reports:
Partial catalogue of such reports:
Task 8: Lighthouse Logs
A very cursory screening of 1947 lighthouse logs reveals no UFO reports.
[We have initiated a listing of UFO reports from lighthouse keepers.]
Task 9: Ghost Rocket Files (1946).
Extensive documentation is available on Ghost Rockets in Swedish, US, UK and Italian archives. Searches in other countries cross-fertilize each other. Many documents still need to be found. We have an extensive list of such documents referred to in records that are already on hand.
[An inventory of documents found to date has already been compiled. These documents make reference to other documents. Also, a list of these “missing documents” has been complied. On going research has moved several “missing documents” to found documents, but usually with other new documents referenced in new missing documents. No specific file of Ghost Rocket, Swedish Incidents, etc. has yet been found. Most documents are among message files or intelligence files. The only exception was several ghost rocket Secret and Confidential messages in General Lemay's papers at the AF Historical Research Agency at Maxwell AFB.]
Task 10: Foo-Fighters, UFOs in World War II.
“Foo-fighter” became generic name for a number of different types of reports of unknown or unidentified aerial sightings during World War II, but originally referred to sightings made by one Night Fighter Squadron in France. A number of other such names were attached to similar sightings, “The Light,” crystal balls, baka bombs, robombs, phoo-fighters, balls of fire, etc.
[Small discs, Stuttgart, Schweinfurt, Alfonsine. General “Hap” Arnold's papers reveal that ‘small discs’ seen falling through a bomber formation on a raid over Stuttgart set a B-17 on fire. Many high ranking officers were involved in the investigation of the Stuttgart incident; Ecker, Spaatz, Marshall and Dr. V. Bush. Marshall wrote to Arnold that such a weapon could bring bombing in Europe to an end. Now here is a major WWII story, but no one seems to be aware of it.
Archivists in the US and Canada questioned on the Schweinfurt sighting referred people to Project Blue Book files. The Schweinfurt incident was detailed in a document finally found in the UK archives. One unit history has a one line entry on the sighting. An unknown WWII incident.]
[A number of new findings and an excellent compilation of the history was published in Keith Chester's Strange Company. A further review of World War II papers of General Hap Arnold at the Library of Congress reveals that the author of the well-known December 1945 “American Legion” article was not a journalist, but rather Lt. Col. Jo Chamberlin, a special aide to General Arnold who had visited and interviewed the men of the 415th Night Fighter Squadron (NFS).
Chamberlin's papers are part of General Arnold's collection and also reveal that both journalist Bob Wilson and Sgt. Ed Clark had also interviewed the airmen of the 415th NSF. Ed Clark actually saw a foo-fighter during a night mission.]
[Recently, another incident has attracted much attention as a UFO incident, the so-called “Battle of Los Angeles” in February 1942. The incident is very complex and all official documents are not readily available to researchers. This incident remains another WWII mystery. There was apparently a blimp-like object photographed and shot at by Anti-Aircraft Artillery (AAA) units around Los Angeles. Also, a series of lights reportedly seen flying back and forth was also fired upon. An explanation for some of the firing involved one of the AAA unit's own meteorological balloon. The Japanese launched a submarine based aircraft in an attempt to set forest fires in Oregon in February 1942. Perhaps stories of a similar launch at Los Angeles would explain some aspects of this incident. Another WWII incident not thoroughly examined by main stream historians.]
Task 10a: Find Dr. David T. Griggs Foo-Fighter Report to Hap Arnold
During the Robertson Panel deliberations both Robertson and Alvarez said that they had some knowledge of Foo-Fighters from their tenure in Europe, but that Griggs was the expert. Dr. James McDonald interviewed Griggs over the telephone. Griggs said he was asked by General Arnold to investigate foo-fighters. He said everywhere he went he heard about them. His investigation was inclusive; he kept no notes, but did send Arnold a report. Attempts to find this report in various archives have failed to date.
Dr. Griggs said Arnold sent him a message which ordered him to look into the unidentified aerial sightings. Message traffic to and from both Europe and the Pacific should be screened for the original TWX and any progress reports sent by message format.
[Many Army Air Force unit histories and some intelligence documents mention foo-fighters. However, higher level investigations commented on by many WWII veterans have eluded researchers. Keith Chester was able to locate the Air staff of SHAPE's evaluation of the 415th NSF reports.]
[After years of searching, official WWII documents were found in 1992 which reported foo-fighters. Many unit histories and intelligent documents reported these sightings. (We have all histories of US night fighter squadrons.) Official reports come from both Europe and Pacific theaters. (In addition pilots and aircrews reported such encounters on ferry missions in the North and South Atlantic.)]
Task 10b: Find Aircraft Warning Services logs and screen for unknowns
Apparently many such records are under state control. We have several UFO-like reports from former AWS members. Large portions of the reports were “unknowns,” however, that does not mean they are UFOs, but aircraft that could never be identified.
Task 10c: Find 9th Air Force report on foo-fighters
[In 1947 a Boston newspaper reported on the study.]
[Task 10d: Find 8th Air Force report on foo-fighters.
[The Air Force confirmed that they had such a report to Keyhoe in 1950.]
Task 10e: Find 4th Air Force or Western Defense Command report on flyover of the Hanford Nuclear Plant.
Three independently reported Naval incidents in the area around Hanford in 1945. Documents from 4th Air Force told of flyovers and plans to intercept such flights in the reports to AAF intelligence.
Task 10f: Find 20th Air Force documents on balls of fire over Japan.]
Task 10g: Screen message traffic for messages on unknown aerial objects.
Dr. Griggs said a TWX from General Arnold contained orders for his investigation of this phenomenon. Other messages on this topic have been found.
Task 10h: Search records of Eglin Air Base for reports of unusual objects seen during test of “television” bombs.
(Information from a contractor aboard a test aircraft who did not witness the object, but heard about the sighting during the test.)
Task 10i: Search records of the 14th Air Force for “Japanese robots”
Mentioned in a report from Major General Claire Chennault, commander of the 14th Air Force in the New York Times and other newspapers.
Task 10j: Screen records of the Weekly Air Intelligence Digest (AID) and other intelligence documents of the XXth Bomber Command. Specifically Volume I #6 and other issues in Volume I. It appears that some of the records of XX Bomber Command were accidentally destroyed in a fire, however the AID might exist in the files of superior or subordinate organizations.
Task 11: CIA UFO Documents.
This has already had one FOIA lawsuit, which was only partially successful. A new search was done about 5 years ago, but now the CIA is stonewalling on what was found. CIA Historian Gerald Haines' article on the CIA UFO involvement is incomplete and does not take the CIA history and evolution into account. Brad Sparks interviewed many of the CIA officials involved with UFOs; most UFO authors miss the insights he gained from such research. Writing a historical treatment on the CIA/UFO involvement could be a jumping off point for further searches/FOIAs.
*(The point is not to criticize Haines, nor to ridicule him. He tried to string together many disparate documents into some kind of coherent history. Many of these document are of little relevance to the main problem. He also missed documents not found in the CIA records. DCI Vandenberg's briefing of President Truman on the Ghost Rocket problem was found among Army files, for instance.)
Find if the predicted CIA report on UFOs mentioned in QUICK magazine of 10 July, 1950, actually existed and obtain a copy.
Task 12: Find the Estimate of the Situation (EOTS). EOTS is the Holy Grail of Ufology. This Top Secret document described in Project Blue Book's chief's book reached the conclusion that UFOs might be interplanetary. Major Dewey Fournet, Capt. Edward Ruppelt and Dr. J. Allen Hynek all said the document existed.
[Apparently the 30 November 1948 Project SIGN interim report also reported this conclusion. According to HQ AF Intelligence letters, it to was destroyed, however, they did request a replacement copy from Wright Field.]
Task 12a: Find the Project SIGN Interim report dated 30 November, 1948.
Task 13: Find Fournet Study of UFOs for Robertson CIA panel.
Records in civilian hands possibly helpful, summary in CIA released documents. Fournet's motion study presented to the 1953 Robertson CIA UFO panel was number 3 behind the EOTS and the Twining 1947 memo as Ufology's Holy Grail documents. Ufologists have not noticed that some material in the CIA released documents contain some of Fournet's work. Also, material in the hands of civilians might be related to the study. Some of the study could be reconstructed by checking Fournet's sketches against Project B/B cases.
[Some of Dewey Fournet's personal papers contained reports made to Fournet in an unofficial capacity (i. e., he made no official reports, but recorded them in a specific unclassified collection titled “Operation Interloper.” He also had a large collection of pre-Arnold reports culled from the books of Charles Fort and elsewhere which may have been used in his study. However, he did specifically talk about a review of 1952 official Project Blue Book reports.]
Task 14: Find Secret Study (Robert S. Allen).
Allen reported this in his news columns, no one is sure if this document ever really existed.
Task 15: Find SAC 1952 UFO Panel/Study (General Lemay, George Gamow). The Lemay panel is known to exist from reports, but almost no info is available.
Task 16: National Bureau of Standards interest
The Condon Committee failed to find references to any studies or interest.
Task 17: Find Strategic Air Command Records
A number of SAC UFO reports seemed to have received internal study and action within SAC Reconnaissance elements as well as information derived from mission aircraft's post-landing reports. When Dr. James McDonald addressed officers at SAC headquarters, a lieutenant walked up to him after the presentation and identified himself as a monitor of UFO reports for the Commanding General.
Task 17a: SAC UFO records
USAF historians have been helpful in this area, but the USAF, despite repeated requests, have not answered questions on the whereabouts of SAC records.
Task 18: Air Defense Command/CONAD/NORAD UFO documents.
ADC records are not available. Unit histories are not very helpful concerning UFOs, lots of data here however!
[In setting up the transfer of investigations of UFO reports from ATIC to ADC in 1953, it was stated that ADC would look at the Project Blue Book files and take such files as they deemed necessary to ADC headquarters.]
Task 18a: Ground Observer Corps logs
[Officials at Buffalo, New York and Wilmington, Delaware released GOC logs to the press in 1954. Further releases were banned by the USAF at the time.]
[Task 18b: Find Filter Center Logs.]
[Task 18c: 4602d Air Intelligence Service Squadron (AISS) UFO files.
The report files from summer 1954 to December 1956 are currently available at the National Archives II at College Park, Maryland. However, earlier files for 1953-54 and early 1957 are unavailable as are correspondence on the UFO problem to/from the 4602d AISS. Successor organizations (no longer under the command of ADC/NORAD) files are also unavailable.
Task 19: Military Airlift Transportation System UFO interest.
Based only on deduction, MATS seems to be a good bet for UFO info.
[MATS was the interface with the air line companies on JANAP 146/CRIVIS. Also, from the earliest days of the 1947 UFO wave, MATS was the source of many UFO sightings and other UFO data.
Task 19a: Air Weather Service involvement with UFO problem
A MATS element regularly called on to assist with UFO investigations and analyses.
Task 19b: CIRVIS/MERINT Reports.
Some CIRVIS/MERINT reports are in BB, CIA and other files. USAF and other agencies say there is no central file of such reports. However, an AF PIO let it slip in the 1970s that there was such a file, but many different USAF elements needed to be consulted about any release. Political and legal pressure would probably be helpful here.
Task 19c: Write history of CIRVIS/MERINT UFO reports as known now.
Same as with the CIA history, Jan Aldrich has a manuscript, which can be updated to give a best estimate picture of the history of the CIRVIS/MERINT program.
[As stated above, the manuscript published in a French magazine over ten years ago is dated. Many new discoveries render much of the original work out of date or inaccurate. A French researcher interviewed both US and Canadian officers at NORAD, and during his visit showed them the article. The NORAD Commander said that they did not investigate UFOs at all after they were determined to pose no threat to North America. He expressed some interest, but had no orders or budget to conduct any further investigations. Col. John Alexander reported in his book UFOs: Myths, Conspiracies, and Realities, similar expressions of interest by various senior government and military officials, but no one would risk their budget or standing by undertaking an investigation.]
Task 19d: Captain Bernard Baruch, Jr. personal papers.
Baruch was almost single-handedly responsible for CIRVIS. Some of his personal papers are now available from the Navy and possibly at Princeton.
[Capt. Baruch's papers relevant to CIRVIS were found at the Naval War College in Rhode Island. There are still gaps in the papers, but the available material has been thoroughly researched and changes many previous ideas about the origin, implementation and operation of CIRVIS.]
Task 19e: CIRVIS/MERINT UFO photo analysis by Navy.
FOIA requests for any such photographic analyses were brushed off by the Navy.
Task 20: NACA UFO records
Correspondence between the USAF and NACA exist on UFOs as do other NACA documents. One wonders if NASA or the National Archives hold NACA files on UFOs.
Task 21: UFO records in NEAP
[NEAP was named in the so-called “Twining Memo” as one of the agencies to receive updates on UFO investigations. Other documents indicate some involvement in early UFO investigations.]
Task 22: Other agencies' UFO records.
Records concerning Project SIGN reports and correspondence with the agencies mentioned in the letter signed by Lt. Gen. Twining on 23 Sept. 1947, Subject: AMC’s Opinions on Flying Discs.
Army, Navy, Atomic Energy Commission, JRDB, the Air Force Scientific Advisory Group, NACA, and the RAND and NEPA and other agencies including State, White Sands, Ordnance Department, Chemical Corps, Asst Chief of Naval Operations for Missiles, Interceptor Command, Continental Air Command – here is where we will find the work of General Vogt, Martin Caidin and others – 3rd Army Intelligence and other agencies which either collected or were involved with analyzing UFO information.
[Dr. Jim Doerter prepared a report, “UFO Experiences and Anomalies Reported by Forest Fire Lookouts and Forest Workers” in which he urged the Forest Service to collect and preserve such reports by its personnel. He was turned down as such activities were not part of its mission. However, Dr. Doerter and the Forest Service personnel to whom he presented his findings were apparently unaware that the Forest Service had been pressed into similar work during the Japanese Fugo balloon bomb attacks and at other times. Dr. Doerter offered his report for publication on the web. I believe this is a worthy project which could use updating with new reports discovered in official sources and by researchers.
[Another possible project concerns UFOs reported by government, and other weather professionals, atmospheric physicists, aerographers, aerologists, forecasters, meteorologists, and weather observers. Dr. James McDonald collected a number of such reports and a compilation of about 200 cases now exists. Many are from official sources made during the execution of government service or during professional duties or observations. Some reports come before the current UFO era and from locations all around the world.]
Task 23: Screen military message traffic for UFO reports, etc.
There are hundreds of microfilms with military messages Secret and below. Researchers have not even scratched the surface here. Researchers found some documents concerning foo-fighters, ghost rockets, and UFO reports in this medium.
Task 24: Screen unit histories for UFO reports and follow up on the information found.
Task 25: Screen intelligence other microfilms/fiche for UFO documents.
FOIAs are almost always answered with “such documents (paper) no longer exist.” However, the USAF made extensive use of microfilming – an unexplored realm! Records which no longer exist in paper format may yet exist on microfilm.
Task 26: US Army Intel Interplanetary Unit.
US Army constantly sends back "cookie cutter" answers to ongoing FOIA requests.
Task 27: Bolender Staff Study on closing Project Blue Book (1969).
The attempts to find the enclosures and other documents in current AF files or retired files have been met with stonewalling at every turn.
Task 28: Missile Sites, Nuclear Research Facilities, and Nuclear Weapon Storage Facilities
This will overlap with several items in this proposal. There are many reports in the vicinity of nuclear facilities and delivery systems during the whole Project Blue Book era and after. We have a number of reports from such sites and leads to many more than could be adequately followed up by a few part-time UFO researchers. (One might think that such reports involving nuclear facilities especially after the closing of Project Blue Book might be in a centralized file.)
The 28 October 1968, Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota case illustrates the vast amount of work necessary to investigate such cases.
Task 28a: Reports from Nuclear Carrying Aircraft and Ships
The Minot case referred to above is the best documented thus far, but there are still dozens of leads and details for which follow up is desirable.
Task 28b: Reports of Interference, Radiation, and other effects during UFO sightings at Nuclear Facilities
Allegedly UFOs have been blamed for nuclear missiles becoming inoperative, communications failures, etc., during UFO sightings. This would seem to be of great national security interest.
Task 29: Reports of Broadcasting, Radar Evading, and Interference during Electronic Reconnaissance and Other Missions
The 1957 RB-47 case is just one of a number of similar cases in this category.
Task 30: Find foreign governments cooperation with the US government concerning UFO reports.
Task 30a: Make a listing of contacts with foreign governments (such as Air Attaches) and a catalogue of foreign government UFO reports in US government files.
The following are six proposals for writing tasks, which represent areas of UFO history that have not been properly researched and expounded on, to date. Note that much of the Archive search items above are related to these topics.
We propose to write an outsider's view of the CIA UFO involvement, which takes into account:
Also, two separate researchers in the 1970s and 80s collected taped interviews with CIA officials involved in various aspects of the UFO issue. As yet, none of this material has been transcribed and made accessible to historians, yet would provide a primary resource of first-person testimony.
Following are examples of various topics relevant to these articles.
(1) Haines had a passing mention of "foo-fighters" in footnotes. The Robertson panel mentioned that members Robertson and Alvarez both deal with the subject – something that Haines failed to mention. Dr. James McDonald interviewed the authority of the phenomenon listed in the Robertson Panel report, Dr. David Griggs. Griggs told McDonald that foo-fighters were seen everywhere he went and that Army Air Forces Commander, General "Hap" Arnold ordered him to do a report on these things. In January 1945 USAAF, Europe as part of a Top Secret report on German capability listed three phenomena which they did not understand, but were worried about, (1) "phoo" bombs (foo-fighters), (2) small disks à la Stuttgart and Schweinfurt, and "crystal ball" generally seen below 10,000. Fred Durant told us in a Sign Oral History Project interview that he wrote information papers for Ed Tauss on ball lightning and foo-fighters prior to the 1952 UFO wave.
(2) Haines also mentioned ghost rockets in his footnotes, strange sightings of rocket-like projectiles over Sweden and Scandinavia starting in 1946, a year before flying saucers came on the scene with Kenneth Arnold. Since the Swedes were inundated by reports of ghost rockets, their Air Technical people became involved in the investigations of the phenomenon. When UFOs came on the scene, they already knew how to investigate these things.
Haines states in a footnote that the CIA's predecessor; the Central Intelligence Group (CIG) monitored the ghost rocket situation. What Haines did not release concerned briefings on the subject put together by the then Director of Central Intelligence (DCI) and head of the CIG, US Army Air Forces General Hoyt Vandenberg. Vandenberg prepared two Top Secret documents for the president on the subject. These CIG documents are not among the CIA's original release. These two documents were found at the Army Historical Institute at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania. Also, dozens of Navy and Army Air Force Top Secret and below documents on Ghost Rockets were distributed to the CIG, but not found among the CIA document release.
(3) An April 1947 CIG intelligence report summarizing ghost rocket activity in Scandinavia showed that the CIG was still active in collecting such information. (Haines does refer briefly to this report. It is not part of the CIA documents on the Internet.)
(4) In June of 1947 a report from the attaché's office in Moscow stated that information received from an informant indicated that the Soviet were building a fleet of long range Horton aircraft (flying wing or disc shaped aircraft) in Eastern Siberia. Production would be up to 1800 by 1952. (This intelligence was mentioned in the Project Blue Book files, the Top Secret "Analysis of Flying Disc Incidents over the US" done jointly by the Air Intelligence Division at USAF Headquarters and the Office of Naval Intelligence in 1948, and also independently in "Air Intelligence Reports" an intelligence publication of the Air Defense Command in 1948.) Just about three weeks after the Moscow information reached the US, Kenneth Arnold had his sightings. What would any intelligence analyst think? "Suspicions confirmed!"
(5) On June 30, 1947, there was a multi-witness sighting of an unknown object by rocket scientist Dr. Carl J. Zohn at White Sands. About the same time David Johnson, Aviation Editor at the Boise, Idaho Statesman newspapers and Idaho Air National Guardsman contacted Lt. Gen. Nathan Twining, Commanding General of Air Materiel Command (AMC) concerning Arnold's and others' sightings. General Twining was impressed by the conversation with Johnson. It seemed to have at least partially contributed to Twining's decision to initiate an investigation of "flying discs" on his own authority, although, apparently the decision was coordinated with General Vandenberg, then Deputy Commanding General of the Army Air Forces. Twining had authority from his immediate boss, General Curtis Lemay, Chief of Research and Development (and later Commander of the Strategic Air Command), to undertake projects he thought important. Twining had to get approval in the next budget cycle to keep the project running.
(6) Headquarters, Air Intelligence, Collection Branch, Lt. Col. Garrett and Pentagon point of contact on flying discs authored a July 30, 1947 memorandum signed by Col. Taylor stating that flying discs were not imaginary, but real and needed investigation. The memorandum circulated throughout the government. Copies have been found in the FBI files and in General Lemay's personal papers.
(7) Shortly after the CIA was formed in 1947, the new DCI Admiral Roscoe Hillenkoetter, wrote to Wright Field telling them that he did not intend to form an Air Technical Intelligence unit within the CIA, but that he would rely on the expertise which resided in the AMC and the Navy's Bureau of Aeronautics. Both would be considered "National Assets."
(8) Hillenkoetter told Brad Sparks in an interview that the CIA monitored UFOs from its formation in 1947. However, in the early days aviation and rockets in the CIA structure had only one or two analysts in the CIA. [Col. McCoy, head of Technical Intelligence at Wright Field, and whose signature is found on most early UFO documents originating at Wright Field was much later seconded to the CIA after his tour at Wright Field was completed.]
(9) Alfred Loedding, civilian T-2/TID UFO monitor and later “the initiator of Project SIGN” met with Dr. Carroll at AAF HQ concerning investigating UFOs. At this meeting Dr. Carroll let slip that several radar cases of unknown contacts over Japan had been received. On his return to Wright Field Loedding informs Col. McCoy, who in turn requested an immediate report of these radar cases.
(10) In September of 1947 Lt. Col. Malcolm Seashore from (Air) Technical Intelligence Division (TID) of Air Materiel Command at Wright Field hand-carried a request to USAF intelligence organizations and Army Counter Intelligence Corps units in Europe that they find the Horton brothers and question them to determine if their design might have been used as a model for the flying saucers. The document contained the vital information, which TID wanted about flying saucers. The Essential Elements of Information (EEI) on Horton was found in Army Intelligence files.
(11) Also, in September 1947, two documents written about UFOs summarized current thinking up to that point, "AMC Opinion on Flying Discs" and "Analysis of Flying Disc Reports" both summarized the investigations and concluded that flying discs were real and not imaginary. (The latter, an extension of Col. Taylor's memo with more and better examples. In December 1947, these two documents were used to support the request for an authorized investigation into UFOs.)
(12) In December 1947, a request for an authorized project was made to General Lemay's successor at Research and Development, Lt. General Craigie. Craigie approved the Project with the classified name "SIGN" and the high-priority of A-2. The nickname for the project press and public consumption was Project Saucer. (Haines has this all mixed up.)
(13) Also in December 1947, the fact that there was no viable Air Defense in the United States is identified by USAF intelligence as a major problem. Also, it was estimated that the Soviets could attack US nuclear facilities at Hanford, Washington, Los Alamos, New Mexico, Oakridge, Tennessee and Dayton, Ohio with a one-way bomber attack. An essential task was to first cover these vital installations and then establish a workable air defense composed of radar detection and fighter-interceptors.
(14) The CIA established a reading panel at USAF HQ Intelligence to read incoming intelligence reports and send vital intelligence found by USAF to the CIA.
(15) Project SIGN started initial investigations including the Mantell case.
(16) The intelligence reading panel members for CIA and State Department visited Air Defense Command HQs at Mitchel Field, Long Island, New York to learn about intelligence vital to Air Defense Command.
(17) In April 1948, Project SIGN produced its initial report. Project SIGN is worried about low aspect ratio aircraft (LARA), which could take the form of flying discs. The chief of research and development after reviewing the draft told TID "don't scare yourself about LARA, the Navy is testing the concept and should have a report soon."
(18) The Horton brothers are found and interviewed. Report on the interview has still not been found in USAF documents.
(19) The USAF interviewed Ray Palmer for the CIA. No one took him too seriously. He was at the time writing science fiction about red spiders invading from Mars. However, Palmer had involved Kenneth Arnold in an investigation of a UFO sighting in Washington State. Also, Arnold would write an account of sighting for Palmers' new "fact" magazine, FATE.
(20) Col. McCoy, chief of TID requested that fighter aircraft be placed on standby alert to chase UFOs when sighted. AF HQ nixed the idea. McCoy had no better luck with requests for radar support to various agencies including ADC.
(21) Col. Taylor first heard about the proposed intelligence reporting system which would later become Communications Instruction for Reporting Vital Intelligence Sightings (CIRVIS), originally approved by the Joint Chiefs of Staff in August 1945 for which Lt. Commander Bernard Baruch Jr., USNR, had just finished the draft instructions. CIRVIS does not mention UFOs but Col. Taylor suggested to Col. McCoy that something similar might work for UFOs.
[Note: All previous items are points that Haines either failed to mention in his article or skimmed over. Now we get to further information in 1948, a very important period for UFO policy and sightings.]
(22) TID requested over thirty-air intelligence reports on ghost rockets that were loaned to TID. (Despite FOIA requests by Bob Todd and me, we have not been able to locate these reports.)
(23) At the end of July 1948 a rather spectacular sighting by Eastern Airline pilots. Capt. Chiles and F/O Whitted resulted in increased action at Air Force headquarters and TID. TID sent a team to investigate the sighting. After a check with flight records, no answer could be found. At AF Intelligence Major General Charles Cabell, Jr., ordered a study of "The Tactics of Flying Saucers." At the same time at TID, a number of analysts and engineers started work on an Estimate of the Situation (EOTS). (Both documents seem to draw on Col. Taylor's Aug 1947 memo and the two Sept 1947 documents.)
(24) TID requested the RAND Corporation prepare a study on spaceships. The Chiles-Whitted sighting was now being referred to as a spaceship sighting.
(25) AF Intelligence (AFOIN) received a Top Secret report from the Netherlands of a spaceship-like object sighted over The Hague. MG Cabell wanted the report down-graded so there would be no delay in passing it on to TID.
(26) TID sent a draft letter questioning the CIA on possible disc-like aircraft developments, which they may be aware of in their or other agencies’ operations. AF intelligence retyped the letter on their letterhead and submitted it to the CIA. No answer has been found in any files we have checked.
(27) Both TID's Estimate and AFOINs studies progressed. AFOIN asked TID to send all its UFO information to the Office of Naval Intelligence, as they would be assisting AFOIN in their study.
(29) TID EOTS concluded that UFOs might be interplanetary and the AFOIN's document now entitled, "Analysis of Flying Object Incidents over the US," AIR 203, which concluded that UFOs may be US or USSR developments, are both submitted. EOTS ran into problems at staff level, where exactly was not clear.
(30) Several Top Secret documents related that General H. Jung, Commander-in-Chief of the Swedish Defense forces, witnessed a ghost rocket-like object crash into a Swedish Lake. The lake was dragged in an attempt to recover the object without success; however a new crater was found on the lake bed. General Jung dispatched reconnaissance planes around the Baltic looking for possible rocket launching sites. In an interview with Swedish Air Intelligence, USAF, Europe intelligence officers learned that the Swedes also considered that UFOs may be interplanetary. USAF Europe also noted that UFOs have been sighted over American air bases in Germany. AFOIN submitted the Top Secret document noting these three developments to both the CIA and TID. (A FOIA to the CIA on this case proves negative. This is just one of many cases in which the CIA claims no record of documents submitted to them!)
(31) TID sent some officers and engineers to Washington, DC to defend the EOTS, but they failed. The "Analysis" became official. The document was printed up in December and distribution was made. The CIA was probably on the distribution list.
(32) MG Cabell had major objections to JANAP 146 and the CIRVIS reporting system. He asked that the system be tabled. Bernard Baruch Jr. put political pressure on Vandenberg and Symington to implement the system.
(33) Project SIGN is renamed Project Grudge in February 1949 and there is a change in philosophy. Now UFOs were considered mostly misinterpretations of man-made or natural objects. The number of analysts and engineers working on UFOs was reduced.
(34) In April and May 1949, Project SIGN's report, Project SAUCER, was released to the press, AFOIN briefs Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Sidney Shalett. Shalett, a friend of the AF Public Relations Officer and confidant of General Vandenberg, wrote a two part debunking article based on a visit to TID at Wright Field. General Cabell was opposed to the article. Someone at TID visited the local newspaper at Dayton and gave an opposing story to the newspaper, which is picked up and carried by the wire services. So then there were conflicting stories in the press about the state of the AF's investigation which became melded into one story. This was not what the Public Relations people in Washington, D.C. wanted. The final Project SIGN report, classified and unavailable to the press, was also completed in this period.
(35) There were only three CIA documents in 1949 (one was released previous to the CIA lawsuit and not released again afterwards.) Prof. C. B. Moore's report is one of them. From reading the other documents and Haines' article, the CIA must have had copies of both the Project Sign and Grudge reports.
(36) By 1949, there had only been limited progress in establishing an air defense of the US. Attempts on an emergency basis had been made in the Northwest area around Hanford in 1948, though it was a dismal failure. There were proposals for an extensive air defense system in the US, but it was seen as too costly and languished while an interim air defense plan was set up. Air defense in the US was mainly hollow without many radars and most interceptor units were not under the command of ADC. Plans were under way to establish an interim air defense on the east and west coasts with emphasis on nuclear installations such as Hanford, Los Alamos, and Oak Ridge.
(37) AIR 203, “The Analysis” was presented to the Joint Intelligence Committee as the current thinking of the Air Force; however, one can read the Project Grudge "attitude" creeping into the thinking of the AF.
[Various UFO reports were submitted by Project Grudge to scientists for evaluation. However, it was felt at TID that this was probably a waste of time. In one case in Oregon in which a Navy pilot saw UFOs between his aircraft and the mountains, limits of the UFO speed, size and distance could have been calculated, but the scientist consulted just brushed off the report without any analysis.]
(38) After Shalett's articles in the Saturday Evening Post, other writers and journalists wanted access to Air Force files. MG Cabell's position was that if one journalist was given access, then there was no reason not to grant other requests. True magazine was one of the requestors. Ken Purdy of True did get some limited access to the material and hired Don Keyhoe as an investigator and writer on the subject. True worked on several articles including one on the White Sands UFO sightings and C.B. Moore's observation. Keyhoe's article was also serialized in newspapers in the US and overseas.
(39) Keyhoe's article hit in Dec 1949 as Project Grudge was being shut down as a separate activity. Its mission was still to be maintained, but only within the normal intelligence reporting channels.
(40) In 1949 the CIRVIS project was still on hold. Since MG Cabell had objections to the program, he was given the task of fixing them, something that he tried to put on the back-burner. Unfortunately for him Baruch kept using his political connections to keep the issue before the higher echelons of the military.
(41) Green fireballs also came to the attention of the military. It was thought that they might be natural phenomena, although some like Dr. Edward Teller and Dr. Lincoln La Paz speculated that they could be some kind of Soviet weapon or reconnaissance, or even a higher-level classified US project.
(42) As interim air defense was established over AEC installations a number of interesting UFO sightings were reported to various intelligence agencies. Some of these seem missing from Project Blue Book.
(43) In 1950 Project Grudge, which never actually ceased functioning, was revived to a more active status on orders from MG Cabell
(44) By the end of 1950, the changes MG Cabell wanted had been made to the CIRVIS program. It was ready to begin operations and CIRVIS reports including those on UFOs started to flow through the system.
(45) In April 1951, Col. Watson at TID wrote to AFOIN, that because of the CIRVIS system there were now two reporting channels for UFOs and he was not getting all UFO reports. He wanted some kind of change or to be relieved of UFO investigation.
(45) In 1951 a high-ranking CIA official (Chadwell) went to the UK and briefed British officials on UFOs, including a study that the CIA had completed in 1951. This is referred to as “Report of the Flying Saucer Working Party.”
(47) Air Technical Intelligence Center was established from TID and designated a separate command. It was to operate as a field unit of AFOIN ATIC was now under the direct authority of AFOIN.
(48) After a rather impressive case at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey, Sept 1951 that leaked to the press, briefings from ATIC officers in MG Cabell's office demonstrated the low-state of the UFO project.
(49) Oct 1951, MG Cabell ordered the UFO project beefed up and told ATIC that the CIRVIS problem would be addressed by further instructions to the field.
(50) In January 1952, AFOIN ordered that copies of UFO reports should be sent to several agencies including the CIA.
[NOTE: Here is the beginning of a paper trail. At the National Archives is one box of UFO reports (about 55) from USAF Intel Command at Fort Eustis, Virginia and attached to each report is a distribution list. The CIA received each one in at least 5 copies. US Navy intelligence reports on UFOs in the Project BB files also have the distribution as part of the report. Again the CIA got these US Navy reports in multiple copies. The USAF Intelligence index cards copied from the National Archives also indicate that the CIA got most UFO reports in multiple copies. The numbers established here would be in the hundreds, but it would indicate that the CIA received thousands of such reports. During the lawsuit they could only find about 900 pages? It would seem this is a scandal. The Central Intelligence Agency can't file intelligence so it can be retrieved centrally? Additionally, Project Blue Book files refer to items sent to the USAF from the CIA. Some of these do not show up in the CIA's release. Also, the CIA got copies of CIRVIS reports, but the documents released do not include any of these reports.]
[Also Note: The CIG, the CIA predecessor organization did get numerous Navy Ghost Rocket reports.]
(51) Further, in the run up to the Robertson Panel, Dr. Thornton Page wrote to Dr. Robertson and Dr. Donald Menzel that he had read the New Yorker magazine article on UFOs by Daniel Lang, which convinced him that there was nothing to UFOs.
(52) After the Robertson Panel, the USAF seemed unconcerned about one of its main recommendations; preventing the clogging of intelligence channels with UFO reports. The USAF took steps in the opposite direction, including a press release inviting UFO reports from the public, requests for UFO reports from foreign nations and trying to speed up CIRVIS reports from airline pilots to intelligence channels. In February 1954, Capt. Baruch indicated that 5-10 UFO reports a night were received – most from the South Pacific, but there is nothing in Project Blue Book or in the CIA releases to indicate that. A press release from the USAF said that in early 1954, they had received less than 100 reports, but Col. John O’Mara at ATIC told Len Stringfield that they were getting 700 reports per week.
(53) After the U-2 started to fly in 1954, reports of the plane started to show up probably in CIRVIS reports and UFO reports. General Cabell, now in the CIA, called his old friend and colleague, Robert Taylor – now General Taylor at the Directorate of Intelligence, HQ, Air Defense Command – and asked him to pull such reports out of the system.
(54) In September 1957, ATIC briefed Dr. Robertson on the UFO problem and all the buzzwords from the Robertson panel were trotted out. (Also, Hynek would submit UFO reports that were difficult to solve to Robertson after the panel was over. Hynek called these reports "pinch bottle" reports.)
The foregoing are some examples of details to be discussed in this article. It would put a different light on Haines’ effort.