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The Flying Saucer Woman Who Changed UFO Research Forever

Coral Lorenzen’s interest in UFOs began at just 9 years old, when she witnessed a mysterious object in the sky over Barron, Wisconsin over a decade before Roswell.

In an unprecedented move, the Pentagon has recently admitted to an active interest in UFOs. A secret study that began in 2007, known as the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP), “did pursue research and investigation into unidentified aerial phenomena” until the program closed in 2012, according to the Department of Defense.

In May the Rolling Stone wrote about a “New York Times report confirming that between 2014 and 2015, Navy pilots reported ‘almost daily’ sightings of unidentified flying objects lurking in the air, including one that resembled a ‘spinning top moving against the wind.’”

In April the Navy reported they were developing guidelines for reporting UFO sightings following “a surge in what the Navy called a series of intrusions by advanced aircraft on Navy carrier strike groups,” according to the Navy Times.

A May headline from the Washington Post declares “UFOs exist and everyone needs to adjust to that fact.

Declassified image of Navy pilots encountering a UFO in 2015
A recently declassified image of Navy pilots encountering a UFO in 2015

Of course, the government publicly acknowledging the existence of unidentified flying objects doesn’t automatically mean we are being visited by extraterrestrials. It’s probably just weather balloons and swamp gas. But whatever we’ve been seeing in the skies, it’s been going on a long time, and the government has been paying attention. Other notable studies predating the AATIP, sparked by the high profile 1947 Roswell incident, include Project Sign in 1948, Project Grudge in 1949, and Project Blue Book throughout the 1950s and 60s.

“I had scarcely heard of UFOs in 1948 and, like every other scientist I knew, assumed that they were nonsense,” Dr. J. Allen Hynek said about his early involvement in the studies.

Hynek agreed to participate in the investigations in hopes of debunking the sightings. But as unexplainable cases piled up, Hynek’s perspective began to change.

“The witnesses I interviewed could have been lying, could have been insane or could have been hallucinating collectively—but I do not think so,” he wrote in 1977. “Their standing in the community, their lack of motive for perpetration of a hoax, their own puzzlement at the turn of events they believe they witnessed, and often their great reluctance to speak of the experience—all lend a subjective reality to their UFO experience.”

But the Air Force didn’t seem to be taking reports seriously, or making any real effort to identify what people were seeing. Hynek became disenchanted, as did the general public. Critics of Project Blue Book, Hynek wrote, called the program “The Society for the Explanation of the Uninvestigated.”

It was during this time that Coral Lorenzen, a young reporter for a small press in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin decided it was up to the public to conduct a proper investigation of UFO phenomena.

The General Mills UFO

UFO researchers Jim and Coral Lorenzen
UFO researchers and APRO founders Kim and Coral Lorenzen, 1955

“I turned the corner at Third and Michigan and walked toward the drugstore,” Coral Lorenzen wrote in her 1966 book Flying Saucers: The Startling Evidence of the Invasion from Outer Space. “Suddenly someone called, ‘There’s the ‘flying-saucer woman’-ask her what it is!’ Third Avenue, the main street in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, was literally full of people watching the sky to the northeast. I looked up and saw it too-a silver, ellipsoid object.”

On May 21, 1952, Lorenzen, along with countless other residents of Door County, witnessed the Sturgeon Bay Flying Saucer. Coral was a writer for the Green Bay Press-Gazette at the time, using it as a platform to research decades of UFO sightings in the area.

The object in the skies over Sturgeon Bay appeared to be metallic with a bright red glow at the bottom, according to Coral’s description in her 1966 book Flying Saucers: The Startling Evidence of the Invasion from Outer Space. It was moving very slowly toward the northeast, and was visible in the area for about 50 minutes. Based on calculations from observations made in Sturgeon Bay, as well as Fish Creek 30 minutes to the north, Coral and Jim estimated the object to be 780 feet in diameter at an altitude of about 40 miles.

Many attempts to explain the sighting were made over the next few days until the General Mills Company of Minneapolis, known today for their cereal brands, took credit for the UFO. They were testing balloons designed to transport equipment in the upper atmosphere for a secret government program called Project Skyhook.

General Mills Project Skyhook billboard
“Where our balloons now float will be man’s highway of tomorrow,” Project Skyhook engineer Otto C. Winzen told Popular Science in 1948.

“Not explained was the bright light on the bottom of the object,” Coral wrote of General Mills’ claim. “It wasn’t even mentioned in the press release. The reliability of the observers wasn’t mentioned either. I had had a good deal of experience with estimating degrees of arc in the sky, and both policemen who had observed the object in Fish Creek were World War II veterans and capable observers. The General Mills statement did not attempt to discredit Mr. Lorenzen’s triangulation, nor did it mention the facts that the big balloons were considerably less than four hundred feet in diameter and were not equipped with huge riding lights.”

The General Mills website mentions the balloons, and the stir one caused in 1947 when something “glowing an angry red” was witnessed over Minneapolis. Many residents called the University of Minnesota, jamming their phone lines for an hour, asking if there was a flying saucer in the sky or if it was “the beginning of the end of the world.”

UFO Over Barron

Something crashed in Roswell, New Mexico in 1947. Whether it was an alien spacecraft as many UFO researchers believe, or merely a weather balloon, it sparked a new public awareness of seemingly extraterrestrial objects in our skies, and reports flooded in for years after.

But UFO reports didn’t begin with the Roswell incident.

In the decades preceding the notorious crash in New Mexico, there were many documented UFO sightings that defied explanation. Mysterious things were flying over our heads long before top secret government aircraft began causing a stir in the 1940s and 50s. And, since Wisconsin ranks as the second highest state where you’re most likely to have a close encounter, it makes sense that the future of UFO research would begin here.

UFO sightings at Benson's Hide-a-Way in Dundee, WI
A binder full of UFO photos at Benson’s Hide-a-Way, Wisconsin’s “UFO Capital of the World”

“The beginning of the mystery of UFOs was, for me at least, on a sunny summer day in Barron, Wisconsin, in 1934,” Coral wrote. She was just nine years old when she and two friends watched an object she described looking like “an open umbrella without the ribs or spurs” glide silently through the sky and vanish over the horizon.

“Barron in 1934 was a small town of about 1500 population. Airliners were rarely if ever seen, it would be safe to say weather balloons were never seen and, indeed, even a small monoplane was an event in that area. The ‘thing’ was in the west-southwest when I first noticed it. I called it to the attention of my two playmates, and one said she thought it was a parachute. Its color was a glowing white. The object was about as large as a dime held at arm’s length, there were no ropes or lines suspended from it—and, therefore, no parachutist.

“It made no sound as it wobbled in a northwest direction across the clear, cloudless sky. It wasn’t going fast—rather, it was poking along at a leisurely rate of speed and with a rather strange motion, that has been described in recent reports as ‘undulating.’

“We watched the object for perhaps twenty seconds. Then it appeared to go over the horizon, or perhaps it came to rest north of Barron in the vicinity of a body of water referred to locally as the ‘Upper Dam.’ I went home and told my father, who made inquiries, and the matter was dropped. No one had seen the object we three children had watched, and there was no news of a parachutist landing north of the dam.”

Coral’s sighting predated the 1947 Roswell crash and the resulting UFO flap by 13 years.

“There was only one explanation for the thing I had seen,” Coral wrote. “There might be intelligent life on other worlds, and their ships were the strange things people had reported in the heavens from time to time through the years.”

Arial Phenomena Research Organization

1952, the year Coral and many others witnessed the massive silver object float silently over Lake Michigan, was a busy year for UFO sightings. And as quickly as the reports were coming in, the government was dismissing them with what many believed to be poor investigations and worse explanations. Coral, still haunted by what she saw years earlier, realized there needed to be an organized way that amateur researchers could investigate UFO sightings and exchange information.

Coral and Jim founded the Arial Phenomena Research Organization (APRO) that year. It was the first group of it’s kind.

In his book The UFO Experience: A Scientific Inquiry, Hynek wrote that while APRO had among its number members who were “overenthusiastic and uncritical persons enamored of the idea of UFOs,” he stated that it was not a “crackpot” organization. APRO had “many serious members, many of whom have considerable technical and scientific training.”

Already known as the “flying saucer lady,” Coral soon found herself in the perfect position to track down information on local sightings.

“In the fall of 1952 I started doing news correspondent work and feature writing for the Green Bay Press-Gazette,” Coral wrote, “and consequently I met a lot of people who were of great assistance to me in tracking down early, unpublished sightings in Wis­consin.”

Coral recorded numerous strange occurrences, including a number of brightly lit objects moving in formation over a minister’s farm in 1910, and a silver globe-shaped object with light emanating from within over Lake Michigan.

Coral dedicated her life to researching the UFO phenomenon. Her enthusiasm for the truth forever changed the way UFO reports were investigated, as today’s modern UFO research groups owe their existence to APRO.

In 1969, APRO members started the Midwest UFO Network, now known as the Mutual UFO Network, or MUFON. Among them was Allen Utke, Associate Professor of Chemistry at Wisconsin State University, who became the first director of MUFON. The group is still active today, with chapters in every state, some 3,000 members, and more than 390 field investigators actively investigating reports of unidentified flying objects.

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Aliens & UFO's

Here’s Why Scientists Are So Dismissive Of UFOs

Our new alien overlords aren’t likely to be landing anytime soon, sad to say, despite news reports of the Pentagon’s secret UFO program.

A Department of Defense “Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program,” which investigated sightings of mystery aircraft moving in impossible ways, thrilled UFO fans in reports this week in both the New York Times and Politico Magazine. Accompanied by released videos of military pilots expressing bafflement at artifacts on cockpit screens, the news seemed a respite from earthly concerns about death and taxes.

But experts in real-life optical illusions expressed more caution, perhaps best summed up by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson telling CNN, “Call me when you have a dinner invite from an alien.”

“Green flashes,” “inversion,” and “ghost” mirages have bedeviled fliers for decades. These illusions are created by different layers of the air acting like lenses. An optical effects archive maintained by astronomer Andrew Young of San Diego State University details the physics of such observations as seen by the eye, cameras, and video recordings. A “subsun,” for example, is a remarkably bright solar reflection from ice crystals floating in the air. The reflection’s circular or flattened shape could resemble a UFO.

Solar mirage and green flash

Not all of the effects reported by news stories can be explained by mirages, optics expert Joseph Shaw of Montana State University told BuzzFeed News. “Reports of objects accelerating in different directions seen by pilots sounds different,” as well as claims of fallen “alloys” collected by the Pentagon. But that doesn’t mean the objects come from outside of our atmosphere.

“Certainly the Air Force should be trying to figure out phenomena reported by pilots,” investigative writer Joe Nickell of the Center for Inquiry, who has investigated UFO reports for two decades, told BuzzFeed News. “But to immediately decide something unexplained is ‘extraterrestrial’ is just really unlikely.”

Defense Department investigations into unexplained aerial phenomena date at least to the start of the Cold War, since the 1947 “Roswell Incident” crash of a secret spy balloon, Project Mogul, in the New Mexico desert.

Around the end of the Cold War, in the “X Files” era, reports of mystery aircraft picked up, security analyst John Pike of GlobalSecurity.org told BuzzFeed News, tied to early development of US stealth fighter and bomber planes. A long history of dubious reports since the 1960s lead him to conclude, “anyone who was paying attention to UFOs had too much time on their hands.”One other source of skepticism about the Pentagon’s UFO program is that it originated in the patronage of former Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada, and was contracted to Bigelow Aerospace, owned by an avowed believer in UFOs, Robert Bigelow. It reappeared in the news reports as a private effort headed by its former program director, Luis Elizondo, and supported by Blink 182 guitarist Tom DeLonge. Elizondo identified himself as a believer in extraterrestrials in the reports.

“I think it is telling that the program was initiated at the behest of Senator Reid and on behalf of a friend and constituent of his,” Steven Aftergood of the Federation of American Scientists told BuzzFeed News. “If DoD had been genuinely concerned about the subject, I believe it would have undertaken the program on its own volition.”

A Defense Department spokesperson, Laura Ochoa, confirmed to BuzzFeed News that it cancelled the $22 million program in 2012. “It was determined that there were other, higher priority issues that merited funding and it was in the best interest of the DoD to make a change,” she said.

But that doesn’t mean the government’s search for aliens has stopped forever, she added: “The DoD takes seriously all threats and potential threats to our people, our assets, and our mission and takes action whenever credible information is developed.”

Source www.buzzfeednews.com

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Dark forest theory – contact with extraterrestrial civilizations

The question of whether we are alone in the universe arises as soon as it has been scientifically proven that the Earth orbits the Sun, and that there are many others besides our planet.

By the 21st century, mankind had already learned to enter the hidden corners of the cosmos, to find distant exoplanets (similar to Earth), to observe nebulae and black holes. But we still cannot ( officially ) find traces of an intelligent life.

All the scientists have discovered so far are the microscopic remains of the most primitive organic matter in Earth’s meteorites. Are we alone in this huge cold world?

People try to find other civilizations by regularly sending radio signals to different parts of the Universe, but they don’t get answers. Or, if they receive something, they don’t understand what it is and whether it’s a message from an intelligent life, or just reflective signals from comets.

According to the theory of Enrico Fermi (Fermi Paradox), presented in the 1950s, in many billions of years of the universe’s development, life could theoretically occur in many places, but if we have not seen them yet, then perhaps we are the only such civilization.

A decade later, astrophysicist Frank Drake, creates a special formula based on many parameters which calculated the number of extraterrestrial civilizations in the galaxy. According to this formula, despite the fact that we do not see traces of these civilizations, there must be many of them.

Over the years, many theories have emerged that try to explain why all these civilizations do not come in contact with us, but rather, they are intentionally hidden from us.

One of the newest and most curious theories emerged in 2008 and bears the slightly ominous name “Dark Forest Theory.”

This theory is revealed in Liu Qixing’s science fiction novel of the same year. It is based on three claims:

1) All living creatures strive to secure their own survival.

2) There is no way to know if an unfamiliar life form will be friendly or try to destroy you.

3) Without guarantees to obtain accurate information about the dangers of this life form, the best thing for surviving is to remain hidden for as long as possible or to deliver the first preemptive strike yourself.

From all this, it follows that if extraterrestrial civilizations are stubbornly silent and do not respond to any attempts at contact, then they probably adhere to the “stealth” condition or they entered the war (preemptive strike) and were destroyed by its consequences.

Liu Cixin says:

“The universe is a dark forest. Every civilization, like an armed hunter, moves among the trees, carefully pushes its branches and tries not to make loud noises. This hunter tries to control himself and breathe as quietly as possible. The hunter must be careful because this forest is full of other hunters.

And if he encounters aliens, he will probably be attacked and killed, survival is the main thing. This is a picture of space civilization and it well explains the Fermi paradox. “

Cixin also explains that the resources of the universe are not infinite. Therefore, civilizations will try to conquer them earlier than others and destroy competitors. That is, any alien race for any other  alien race is a catastrophic threat.

Between their own representatives, these races can negotiate, as humans do on Earth. but with completely alien intelligent life forms, completely different rules are played, and the survival of the species is at stake.

This theory is supported by science fiction writer David Brin, and many others. Moreover, if we take this theory to be true, then it turns out that humanity is at great risk by sending radio signals to space. It’s the same as in a dark forest full of dangers, to scream:

I’m here! Come all here!

The late Stephen Hawking also realized this danger and opposed attempts to seek contact with aliens, believing that this was essentially suicide. .

Maybe people are overly dramatic and vainly imagine extraterrestrial civilizations as ruthless predators?

However, if all these civilizations evolved in a way similar to humankind, which is very likely under similar chemical and biological conditions, then we must remember what the “civilized” people in our history did when they encountered less developed tribes.

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Hollywood UFO stories are becoming much more realistic

The Pentagon admits that UFOs are real. So Hollywood is doing a flurry of movies and TV shows about how we should look for them.

UFOs are everywhere and Hollywood noticed it. Talking about UFOs is no longer something conventional, with the former Blink-182 singer, Tom DeLonge, causing the US military to admit they have UFO videos.

Small and large screens have always shown aliens and UFOs. From movies like Close Encounters of the Third Kind to The arrival and even the franchise The Avengers, bizarre aliens and their vehicles arrived on Earth and this has caused audiences around the world to question the existence of extraterrestrials. But there is a greater focus on UFO hunters in Hollywood.

Robbie Graham, media critic and author of “Silver Screen Saucers: Sorting Fact from Fantasy in Hollywood’s UFO Movies”, said:

I think it’s fair to say yes, and that this resurgence in popularity is a direct result of the 2018 Pentagon revelations, which captured the attention of mainstream media (in the U.S.) like no UFO story in decades. This helped to legitimize UFOs as a topic of dominant debate and opened up new lines of scientific and political research for TV producers who are always looking for new approaches to this enduring and popular subject.

Recent researches indicate that just over half of Americans believe that UFOs exist and a third believe they are alien spaceships. Graham is not entirely convinced that UFOs will be the next big thing. But he points out that young people are being drawn to the subject like never before.

Graham stated:

It seems that ufology is not as stupid as it was before, thanks to an influx in recent years of relatively young and modern researchers who were attracted to the subject through its new legitimacy. Ufology was once an old person’s game; now it’s a youth game.

In 2017, former Blink 182 frontman Tom DeLonge, publicly announced his UFO / technology / media company, To the Stars Academy, along with an article from New York Times announcing a secret Pentagon program designed to study anomalous phenomena. Young UFO enthusiasts have turned to social media, #UFOTwitter has become a real hashtag and the once invisible UFO speech has become incredibly public.

Aiden Gillen told the Motherboard in an interview:

I think people are more open to considering it a real phenomenon than just a psychological one.

I suppose you could have said this also in the 50s and 60s, in the age of science, that people would be more open to the idea that we are not alone in the universe. I am also fully aware of how unlikely we are to meet.

Gillen, known for playing Littlefinger’s role in game of Thrones from HBO, interprets the Dr. J. Allen Hynek at the Project Blue Book of History Channel, what returns next week.

Aidan Gillen as Dr. J. Allen Hynek, in the Blue Book Project series.

Blue Book Project is a fictional TV series about the Air Force’s infamous UFO investigation program of the 1950s and 1960s with the same name.

Gillen said that humans are naturally curious about UFOs:

It is inevitable that you will ask yourself. This is something that people have been doing since we started supporting ourselves as a species. ‘What’s up there?’ It’s always been, ‘What’s up there?’

Although Gillen does not think the government should spend large amounts of money chasing UFOs, as there are more pressing problems, he thinks that talking about UFOs is no longer taboo.

He explained:

I think there is something that is getting cool about UFOs. It’s easier to talk or reference [sobre eles]. I feel that Immediate Third Degree Contacts is one of the coolest films of the 70s, and when that role came out, I thought, “This is really cool ..

Although TV dramas like fictional Blue Book Project, UFO-themed programs still have a long way to go.

Graham said:

They depict presenters chasing lights in the sky in jeeps while wearing night-vision goggles and noisy walkie-talkies (radios). It is absurd and devoid of educational value. However, it doesn’t have to be that way, and this wave of factual UFO TV shows is likely to reflect a more serious tone that the mainstream media has started to adopt on this topic. Certainly, UFOs are ‘selling’ like never before. They are a hot property in the TV area at the moment and everyone wants a slice.

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