In the early morning hours of July 8, 1947, something crashed on a ranch outside of Roswell, New Mexico. The rancher, William “Mac” Brazel, discovered the wreckage and reported it to the local sheriff. Soon, military personnel arrived on the scene, and the entire incident was classified as a top-secret matter. Over the years, the Roswell Incident has become one of the most famous cases in the history of ufology, with numerous theories and explanations being put forth to explain what happened that day.
However, in the years since the incident, many people have come forward with alternative theories, including claims that the object was an extraterrestrial spacecraft. The most widely accepted hypotheses are listed below.
1) Extraterrestrial spacecraft theory: UFO Sightings
This theory suggests that the object that crashed near Roswell was indeed an extraterrestrial spacecraft UFO, (Unidentified Flying Object). Supporters of this theory point to eyewitness accounts of strange creatures and technology, as well as the alleged discovery of extraterrestrial technology by Jesse Marcel and other military personnel. They also argue that the military and government covered up the incident to keep the discovery of extraterrestrial life a secret.
1.1) Evidence For Flying Saucer
One of the main pieces of evidence supporting the extraterrestrial spacecraft theory is the testimony of eyewitnesses who claimed to have seen strange creatures and technology at the crash site. Many of these eyewitnesses were military personnel who were directly involved in the recovery effort.
Jesse Marcel, a military intelligence officer who was one of the first people to arrive at the crash site, claimed that the debris he saw was not of this world. He described the material as being thin, lightweight, and extremely tough, with strange hieroglyphic markings that he could not decipher. He also claimed to have seen strange metallic debris with no discernible earthly origin.
Another witness, Glenn Dennis, claimed to have been contacted by a nurse who worked at the Roswell Army Air Field hospital. According to Dennis, the nurse described seeing strange bodies that were not human, with large heads and eyes, and no visible ears or noses. She also claimed that the bodies emitted a strange odour and that the military had taken them away for examination.
1.2) Evidence Against Flying Saucer
Only a handful of the hundreds of persons who were questioned by different studies claimed to have seen debris or aliens. The majority of witnesses merely restated prior assertions. Just 41 of the 300+ people that were allegedly questioned for the UFO Crash at Roswell (1991) can be “considered real first- or second-hand witnesses,” According to Pflock, be “fairly believed to have seen tangible proof, trash.” Just seven of them have claimed anything indicating that the debris had extraterrestrial origins.
The credibility of eyewitness accounts, problems with witnesses making demonstrably false claims, multiple, contradictory accounts, dubious deathbed confessions, and accounts from elderly and easily misled witnesses are just a few of the issues critics have pointed out with those who claim to have seen aliens.
One of the main arguments against the extraterrestrial spacecraft theory is the lack of physical evidence. While there are many eyewitness accounts of strange debris and creatures, no concrete physical evidence has ever been produced to definitively prove the existence of extraterrestrial life.
In addition, many sceptics point to the fact that the military’s initial explanation of a weather balloon is the most plausible. The area around Roswell was home to numerous military bases and testing facilities, and it is possible that the object that crashed was part of a top-secret military program.
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1.3) The Heightened Interest
The only individual known to have travelled with the Roswell debris from where it was discovered to Fort Worth, where reporters observed material that was allegedly part of the recovered item, was Jesse Marcel, whom UFO researcher Stanton Friedman spoke with in February 1978. The assertions Marcel made were at odds with what he had told the press in 1947.
Marcel’s first recorded interview was included in the November 1979 edition of the documentary “UFOs Are Real,” which Friedman co-wrote. The movie only saw a small number of screenings before being distributed for TV. The National Enquirer, a sensationalist tabloid, first made the Marcel tale widely known on February 28, 1980.
In August 1985, Marcel gave his last interview to America Undercover on HBO. Marcel constantly rejected the existence of corpses in all of his comments. Several hundred persons who claimed to be connected to the events at Roswell in 1947 were interviewed by UFO researchers such as Stanton T. Friedman, William Moore, Karl T. Pflock, and the team of Kevin D. Randle and Donald R. Schmitt between 1978 and the early 1990s.
In an interview that was aired on September 20, 1980, Marcel discussed his involvement in the 1947 news conference for the television program In Search of…
“I was requested to remark, but I wasn’t free to do so. I was therefore limited to keeping my mouth shut. And it was General Ramey who brought up the subject and advised the newsmen to forget about it after explaining it to the publications. It is only an observation balloon for the weather. Naturally, we were both aware of the truth.”
2) Project Mogul theory
This theory suggests that the object that crashed near Roswell was part of a top-secret military program called Project Mogul. The program involved the use of high-altitude balloons and highly classified materials to monitor Soviet nuclear tests. Supporters of this theory argue that the military covered up the true nature of the project for national security reasons.
2.1) Evidence for
The main piece of evidence supporting the Project Mogul theory is the fact that the military did conduct a top-secret program called Project Mogul during the same period as the Roswell Incident. The program involved the use of high-altitude balloons and highly classified materials to monitor Soviet nuclear tests.
Supporters of this theory also point to the fact that the debris recovered from the crash site was consistent with the materials used in the Project Mogul program, including balsa wood, rubber, and foil.
2.2) Evidence Against
One of the main arguments against the Project Mogul theory is that the materials recovered from the crash site were not consistent with the type of balloons used in the Project Mogul program. In addition, many witnesses described seeing strange hieroglyphic markings on the debris, which would not have been present on balloons.
3) Psychological warfare theory: Roswell Army Air Field
This theory suggests that the Roswell Incident was part of a psychological warfare experiment conducted by the military. According to this theory, the military may have intentionally released false information about the incident to gauge public reactions and determine how best to use the idea of extraterrestrial life for their purposes.
3.1) Evidence For Psychological Warfare Theory
One of the main pieces of evidence supporting the psychological warfare theory is the fact that the military was known to conduct psychological warfare experiments during the Cold War era. These experiments often involved the dissemination of false information to gauge public reactions and shape public opinion.
Supporters of this theory also point to the fact that the military’s initial explanation of a weather balloon was quickly contradicted by eyewitness accounts of strange debris and creatures.
3.2)Evidence Against Psychological Warfare Theory
One of the main arguments against the psychological warfare theory is that the military would have had no reason to intentionally release false information about the incident. While the idea of extraterrestrial life may have been useful in a propaganda context, the military would have had no reason to cover up a major scientific breakthrough like the discovery of extraterrestrial technology.
4) Hoax Theory
This theory suggests that the entire Roswell Incident was a hoax perpetrated by Marcel and other military personnel to gain fame and notoriety. Supporters of this theory argue that the military would have had no reason to cover up the discovery of extraterrestrial technology, as it would have been a major scientific breakthrough that could have given the U.S. a significant advantage over other nations.
4.1) Evidence For Hoax Theory
One of the main pieces of evidence supporting the hoax theory is the fact that some of the witnesses involved in the recovery effort, including Jesse Marcel, later changed their stories and gave conflicting accounts of what they had seen. This suggests that they may have been embellishing or fabricating their stories for personal gain.
Supporters of this theory also point to the fact that the military’s initial explanation of a weather balloon is the most plausible, and that the idea of an extractor
4.2) Evidence Against Hoax Theory
One of the main arguments against the hoax theory is the sheer number of eyewitness accounts that describe strange debris and creatures at the crash site. It seems unlikely that so many people would have been willing to participate in a hoax, especially given the serious consequences that could result from lying to military authorities.
In addition, many of the eyewitnesses involved in the recovery effort were military personnel with no apparent motive for fabricating their stories.
5) Cold War Propaganda
Another theory that has been put forward to explain the Roswell Incident is that the government fabricated the incident as part of a propaganda campaign during the Cold World War ii. According to this theory, the government wanted to create fear and anxiety about the Soviet Union, and they used the idea of a crashed “flying disk” to stir up public interest in the threat of extraterrestrial invasion.
5.1) Evidence For
One of the main pieces of evidence in support of the Cold War propaganda theory is the fact that the Roswell Incident occurred at a time when the United States was engaged in a tense standoff with the Soviet Union. Some have suggested that the government used the incident to distract the public from other issues and to create a sense of national unity against a common enemy.
6) The Rosewell Incident Will Remain a Topic of Debate
While the Roswell Incident remains a subject of intense debate and speculation, it is clear that several different theories have been put forward to explain what happened. While some people remain convinced that the incident was caused by extraterrestrial life, others believe that more mundane explanations, such as a crashed weather balloon or a military experiment, are more likely
The fact that so many eyewitnesses reported seeing strange debris and creatures at the crash site, coupled with the military’s initial cover-up of the incident, suggests that there may have been more to the story than just a weather balloon.
At the same time, it is important to remember that there are other plausible explanations for what happened at Roswell, including the possibility that the object that crashed was part of a top-secret military program or that the incident was part of a psychological warfare experiment.
Ultimately, the true story of the Roswell Incident may never be fully known, and it will likely continue to be a subject of debate and speculation for years to come.
7) The Myth of Roswell
The 1980s public obsession with “conspiracy, cover-up, and repression” aligned well with the Roswell narratives as presented in the “sensational books” that were being published, according to anthropologists Susan Harding and Kathleen Stewart, who claim that the Roswell Story was a prime example of how a discourse moved from the margins to the mainstream by the prevailing zeitgeist.
The increasingly detailed reports of extraterrestrial crash landings and government cover-ups were also seen by sceptics and certain social anthropologists as proof that a myth was being created.
Joseph Nickell and James McGaha, two well-known sceptics, identified a myth-making process that they named the “Roswellian syndrome.” A myth is said to go through five different stages of growth according to this syndrome: incident, debunking, submergence, mythologizing, reemergence, and the media bandwagon effect.
8) The Roswell Incident Featured in the Book
Marcel’s tale was included in Charles Berlitz and William Moore‘s book The Roswell Event in October 1980. The writers have previously published well-read books on unusual subjects including the Bermuda Triangle and the Philadelphia Experiment. Friedman did some research for the book even though he wasn’t given credit.
According to the book’s plot, an extraterrestrial vessel was studying US nuclear weapons activities while flying over the desert of New Mexico when it was struck by lightning and crashed, killing the aliens on board. A government cover-up naturally followed.
9) Background of the Roswell Incident
The 1947 flying saucer mania included the Roswell event. On June 26, media sources throughout the country carried the story of civilian pilot Kenneth Arnold discovering what came to be known as “Flying Saucers.”. About 800 “copycat” sightings that were claimed after the Arnold account was published would subsequently be recorded by historians.
On Saturday, July 5, 1947, “Mac” Brazel made the trip to Corona, New Mexico, from his remote ranch. Brazel was oblivious to the flying saucer mania that had been going on for the previous ten days because the ranch had no phone or radio.
Brazel did not link the debris he had discovered three weeks earlier to the flying discs in the news until Saturday night as a result. The square mile of the ranch had been littered with trash, including tinfoil, rubber, and thin wooden planks. In the past, Brazel had collected it and buried it beneath some bush.
Marcel sent the documents to Colonel William Blanchard, the base commander, on Tuesday, July 8. Blanchard told General Roger Ramey of the discovery at Fort Worth Army Aviation Field (FWAAF). General Ramey commanded that the materiel be promptly airlifted to FWAAF. Getting on a B-29 Superfortress, Marcel flew to FWAAF.
In a news statement dated July 8, 1947, RAAF public relations officer Walter Haut said that members of the field’s 509th Operations Group had discovered a “flying disc” that had crashed on a property close to Roswell.
The numerous stories about the flying disc were confirmed to be true yesterday when the intelligence office of the 509th Bomb group of the Eighth Air Force, Roswell Army Air Field, was lucky enough to get a disc with the help of a local rancher and the sheriff’s office of Chaves County.
Sometime last week, the flying object touched down on a property close to Roswell. Without access to a phone, the rancher kept the disc until he could get in touch with the sheriff’s department, which then alerted Maj. Jesse A. Marcel from the intelligence office of the 509th Bomb Group.
The disc was picked up at the rancher’s house right away after taking action. It was examined at Roswell Army Air Base, after which Major Marcel lent it to higher headquarters.
Frank Joyce, a radio broadcaster for Roswell, remembers calling Haut to confirm the release decades later. I told Walter not to publish this tale, Joyce recalled. If you do, difficulties will arise. You’ll be sent to Siberia. It was prevalent saying back then, as I recall stating.
General Ramey and his chief of staff Colonel Thomas Dubose recognized the material as parts of a weather balloon kite as soon as Marcel carried it into their respective offices. Over 80 weather stations across the nation utilize similar “ray wind” sensors, the on-duty FWAAF weather officer said to reporters.
The balloons were fastened to a six-pointed silver star-shaped reflecting object. After taking off, the balloon became larger as it rose in altitude, exploding at a height of around 60,000 feet, and breaking into fragments that fell to the ground.
The debris, according to Brazel, was “a vast area of bright wreckage made up of rubber strips, tinfoil, a pretty thick paper, and sticks,” he told the Roswell Daily Record on July 9. He didn’t pay much attention to it, but later he went back to retrieve some of the debris with his wife and kids.
On July 9, Marcel gave the following explanation: “We spent a few hours Monday afternoon July 7 seeking for any additional bits of the weathering apparatus.” “We discovered some more tinfoil and rubber patches.”
As stated in the Roswell Daily Record’s article from July 9, 1947:
If that was how it operated, Brazel estimated the balloon’s length to be 12 feet 3.5 m, based on the size of the space in where he was sitting. The rubber was dispersed throughout a circle with a diameter of roughly 200 yards (180 meters) and had a smokey grey tint.
As the wreckage was picked up, the rubber formed a bundle that was approximately 18 or 20 inches 45 or 50 cm long, and about 8 inches 20 cm thick, while the tinfoil, paper, tape, and sticks produced a bundle that was about three feet 1 m long and 7 or 8 inches 18 or 20 cm thick. He calculated that the total weight of the bundle would have been around five pounds 2 kg.