'We're Not Alone,' Ex-Astronaut Says

Earth Day may fall later this week, but as far as former NASA astronaut Edgar Mitchell and other UFO enthusiasts are concerned, the real story is happening elsewhere.

Mitchell, who was part of the 1971 Apollo 14 moon mission, asserted Monday that extraterrestrial life exists, and that the truth is being concealed by the United States and other governments. He delivered his remarks during an appearance at the National Press Club following the conclusion of the fifth annual X-Conference, a meeting of UFO activists and researchers studying the possibility of alien life forms.

Apollo 14

Mankind has long wondered if we're "alone in the universe. [But] only in our period do we really have evidence. No, we're not alone," Mitchell said.

"Our destiny, in my opinion, and we might as well get started with it, is [to] become a part of the planetary community. ... We should be ready to reach out beyond our planet and beyond our solar system to find out what is really going on out there."

"I urge those who are doubtful: Read the books, read the lore, start to understand what has really been going on. Because there really is no doubt we are being visited," he said.

"The universe that we live in is much more wondrous, exciting, complex and far-reaching than we were ever able to know up to this point in time."

UFO Facts
UFO Fact
A UFO sighting occurs somewhere on the planet every three minutes.

Hundreds of thousands of unexplained sightings have been reported all around the world, many of which were documented or photographed.

A Roper poll in 1991 said that 4 million Americans believe they have been abducted.

A Gallup poll in 1996 said that 71 percent of Americans believe the government knows more than it is telling us about UFOs.

Millions of people have seen UFOs, from biblical prophets to astronauts to housewives to astronomers.

The first documented UFO sighting is in the Bible. The prophet Ezekiel described a "great cloud with fire enfolding itself, a wheel in the middle of a wheel that descended and fired lightning bolts into the earth."

An incident was reported in Basel, Switzerland, on Aug. 7, 1566.

The first photograph of a UFO was taken in 1883 by astronomer Jose Bonilla in Zacatecas, Mexico.

Alexander Hamilton reported a cow being kidnapped by an airship in Le Roy, Kan., in April 1897.

Winston Churchill reported a strange airship in Kent, England, Oct. 14, 1912. It was the first case of a UFO being "officially" reported.

On Feb. 25, 1942, a large, dark object over the Los Angeles coastline was mistaken for a Japanese attack and drew a barrage of anti-aircraft fire. Memos to President Roosevelt confirmed the existence of unidentified aerial objects.

UFOs were often seen and photographed during NASA's space missions in the 1960s.

UFO sightings have been claimed by former President Jimmy Carter, Clyde Tombaough (the astronomer who discovered Pluto) and William Shatner (who claims to have been rescued by aliens who pointed him in the right direction when he was lost in the Mojave Desert).


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UFO Myths & Facts
UFO Myths & Facts
Myth: Very few people have really seen a UFO...
Fact: According to a Roper poll conducted in 2002 for the SciFi channel, one in seven Americans say they or someone they know has had an experience involving a UFO...
A total of 14 percent have had or know someone who has had at least one Close Encounter of the "First," "Second," or "Third" kind. The largest proportion (12 percent) say they or someone else they know has seen a UFO at close quarters. Source: Poll from - Coalition for Freedom of Information

Myth: Airline pilots never see UFOs, so they must not be real...
Fact: There have been many cases of pilot sightings ever since the 1940s...

The most convincing UFO reports were produced in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s by airline pilots, military pilots and ex-military pilots. These men had the training and the experience to be able to distinguish between normal sky sights and highly abnormal sights. They knew what airplanes looked like, and what meteors looked like, having seen them many times. Their visual observations were frequently supported by radar data which showed essentially the same thing. They were therefore able, on many occasions, to methodically eliminate conventional phenomena from consideration when trying to identify UFOs.

In those same decades, most UFO sightings were made in the daytime and frequently at close range, when shapes and surface features could be distinguished, thus making positive identification of normal sights easier and the descriptions of unusual sights more detailed. When all normal explanations had been eliminated, the witnesses could concentrate on those aspects of the experience which were most abnormal.

These abnormal aspects included the shapes of UFOs and their behavior. Most of the UFOs seen in the daytime were said to have had simple geometric shapes--discs, ovals, spheres, cylinders--and surfaces that looked like metal. Such shapes are not only nonexistent among known aircraft, but contrary to all known theories of flight, in most cases offering control and performance disadvantages rather than advantages. Source: Don Berliner, The Fund for UFO Research, Inc.; 2002

UFO Myths & Facts

Myth: UFOs are only reported by uneducated farmers in places you've never heard of...
Fact: A study by the U.S. Air Force showed that the most puzzling UFO reports came from people who had the best technical backgrounds. They are reported from everyplace where there are people, though fewer are seen from big cities because less of the sky is visible.

UFOs are reported by every type of person: uneducated yokels and PhDs; laborers and corporation presidents; truck drivers and airline captains; little kids, their parents and their grandparents. People in every state, every province and every country. They are reported by people who are convinced every light in the sky is an alien craft, and by other people who are convinced that no one as smart as them ever sees odd things in the sky.

People in rural areas may see more UFOs because they can see more of the sky and because they may look at the sky more often. Big city people have a poor view of the sky, and they are usually too busy to look up. Generally speaking, UFOs are seen by people who happen to be in the right place at the right time.
Source: Don Berliner, The Fund for UFO Research, Inc.

Myth:The U. S. Air Force investigated UFOs and concluded there was nothing to them...
Fact: The Air Force had an official UFO investigation from 1948 to 1969 (Projects Sign, Grudge and Blue Book), and collected more than 12,500 reports. It claims to have explained all but about 701 of them, but the facts of most of those reports strongly suggest that something important was seen.

The U.S. Air Force claims to have explained all but 701 of its reports, though by actual count the number is 584. But as so many of these were made by military and airline pilots, and other unexplained sightings involved radar tracking, they are the heart of the matter. Hundreds of other reports in the official files are alleged to have been explained, but are full of unscientific and illogical reasoning.

If so many cases are admittedly unexplained, they cannot be used to support any conclusions, as the nature and origins of unexplained cases are, by definition, unknown. If you add those cases that are only "possibly" explained, the total lacking convincing explanations tops 50%, which strongly suggests that the official investigation was a failure. Source: Don Berliner, The Fund for UFO Research, Inc.

Myth:UFOs are only seen by Americans...
Fact: UFOs have been seen wherever there are people. Every continent has had its share, as has almost every country, though local interest plays a role in the apparent level of activity. Wherever there is someone interested in searching out UFO reports, they will be found, but that doesn't mean the investigator lives in a center of activity.

Some of the first UFOs were seen in Europe and the Pacific. Since then, they have been reported from all continents and probably all countries. There have been major waves of sightings not only in the USA, but in Great Britain, France, Belgium, Russia and elsewhere. Official and private organizations have been established in many countries to study their sightings, and their results are similar to other countries'. The same kinds and variety of UFOs are seen most places, and this has changed little over the years.

In late 1944, following a gradual build-up of activity, "foo-fighters" were reported in large numbers. Pilots of American and British bombers and night fighters over occupied France and over Germany described glowing balls that flew in formation with them for long periods and then just flew away. The first "explanation" was that they must be experimental German anti-aircraft weapons that were being tested prior to being put into action. But the war ended without a single "foo-fighter" showing unfriendliness. Explainers then tried to blame German jet and rocket fighters in night operations. But it was later determined that there may have been only a single night flight by any German jet, and none by their rocket-powered fighters.

At about the same time in the Pacific Theater of War, American bombers were followed for hours by bright lights that eventually turned away. Military officials said they were Japanese suicide planes, and that is how they show up in official mission reports. But suicide planes never flew at night, and they never followed our bombers for long periods of time without doing anything. The war ended with hundreds of reports still unexplained.
Source: Don Berliner, The Fund for UFO Research, Inc.

Myth:UFOs have only been seen since 1947...
Fact: There are UFO reports in newspapers and literature dating back to 1865 and even earlier...

UFO Myths & Facts
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