by Scott Corrales
It is no secret that UFO activity in the waters surrounding Puerto Rico has been steadily increasing over the past few years. Sightings on land have multiplied tenfold since 1987, but that is nothing when compared to the number of UFO reports issuing from those who work the waters surrounding the island.
A good number of reports gathered by many investigators over the course of the years seems to point to the existence of a submarine UFO base off the southwestern tip of Puerto Rico, as well as in the waters of the northern and eastern shores, which are some of the deepest on the planet. Whether it is, in fact, a base for nuts-and-bolts craft from another world or a convenient materialization point for interdimensional phenomena is beside the point. Things are taking place in Puerto Rico which have attracted a great deal of attention, both from the government and the public at large.
Great balls of fire
The western half of Puerto Rico has been the stage of endless UFO/religious phenomena for decades, ranging from the magnetic anomalies at the Maricao State Forest (a notorious “materialization” spot) to the recurring apparitions of the Blessed Virgin at Hormigueros and other communities in the region. The 1991 UFO flap over the inland community of Adjuntas was of such magnitude that it prompted the town’s mayor to write President Bush to alert him to the situation. Thousands of people flocked to the town to catch a glimpse of the multicolored balls of light which executed fantastic maneuvers in the sky.
These strange lights are nothing new. The legend of the three fishermen lost at sea during a storm only to see a bright light approach their boat and turn into a beautiful woman who identified herself as the Virgin Mary occurred in Caribbean waters, and this manifestation of the Virgin is venerated in Cuba. Christopher Columbus noted in his log that “a ball of fire fell into the waters” in this part of the ocean, an event which sent the ships compass spinning madly to the terror of the crew.Due to the fact that most commercial fishing activity is carried out at night, fishermen have a unique vantage point from which to observe this aspect of the UFO phenomenon.
A grandmother fishing with her two nephews one evening told researchers about a large, brilliant UFO which hovered over her boat for some three minutes off Puerto Real. The woman saw silhouetted figures moving around the interior of the spherical device, which disappeared momentarily, leaving her and the children confused and frightened. On other side of the Mona Passage, in the Dominican Republic, yet another grandmother had a UFO story to tell: she had been taken to an underwater base “at the bottom of the Mona Passage”, where she underwent surgery at the hands of aliens. Her story, told to investigator Julio V. Ramírez, is reminiscent of the experiences of Costa Rican engineer Eduardo Castillo, who was taken to an underwater city during one of his encounters.
The brightness of the objects is the most noticeable feature of the objects–the foremost thing that causes witnesses to realize that they are faced from something beyond their experience. A group of four fishermen were casting their nets in the early hours of the morning when they saw the lights emerge from the water. One of them, a man in his fifties, was so intimidated by the sight that he took refuge in the cabin of his fishing boat, refusing to discuss the matter ever again.
Some of the men of that group went on to have three other sightings. Not wishing to seem gullible, they did not claim to have seen “flying saucers”: they merely limited their comments to saying that what they’d witnessed was neither a helicopter, balloon nor plane.
Not all sightings originated in the water. During the series of interviews conducted by Jorge Martín, it was revealed that many of the lights originated inland, from the mountains, appearing first as streaks of light in the night sky, like meteors, until rings of light and a visible structure came into view as the object descended within 500 to 600 feet above their boats. Rollie Irizarry, one of the interviewees declared: “My dad said that he jumped into the mangrove swamp, telling his fishing buddy “if they’re that good, let them try to catch us in the swamp!”. They honestly thought that they were done for, when they saw the thing swoop down over their yawl.” Many of the fishermen, who work the entire littoral of western and southern P.R., were taken aback by the incidents to the extreme of not wanting to discuss their cases with professional investigators.
Aircraft carriers on the spot
The Navy has gone as far as to station an aircraft carrier group in the waters off the southwestern tip of Puerto Rico, Cabo Rojo. The fishermen were not at all surprised by this development: over the course of many evenings, they would see the nocturnal lights going about on their appointed rounds–shifting color from white to red and blue, spreading open like fans of color that would fill the night sky, or hovering intimidatingly over their fishing boats, shining beams of actinic light at them. Fighters from the carrier group stationed off-shore would later be involved, to their detriment, in one of the most intriguing UFO cases to be reported on the island. This increased military vigilance, however, has not contributed to a significant reduction in the number of sightings or close encounters. “Neither the police nor the soldiers will tell you what’s going on,” one of the fishermen interviewed remarked. “But you can be sure that they know.” There is widespread belief that the efforts being made to staunch the flow of illegal drugs into the island are, in fact, closely related to monitoring the strange objects penetrating Puerto Rican airspace.
Jorge Martín pointed out to this author that there is also an enigmatic Navy ship, the Gallatin, which is laden with advanced technology instrumentation and pays secret visits to Caribbean locations in which UFO activity has been detected. Said visits take place in 3-to 6-month intervals, and the crew complement is subjected to rigorous psychological testing every six months.
When Spanish UFO researcher Antonio Ribera appeared on the Christina TV talk show in the fall of 1991, he was questioned as to the existence of “Ufoports” in certain areas of the planet which experience more than their fair share of sightings. He indicated that this possibility was not to be ruled out, particularly in the waters of what we call the Bermuda Triangle. Ribera presented a thorough report on these sensitive areas in his book Los doce triangulos de la muerte (Plaza y Janés, 1976).
Does the government really know?
The suspicions of the local fishermen aside, there exists a good deal of circumstantial evidence that points toward the fact that the government does have an idea of what is going on in the Mona Passage.
In March of 1977, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico created a commission to study all matters pertaining to the presence of UFOs on the island–a Senate committee constituted by seven members. This was at a time when sightings were on an upward swing after the lull following the eventful years of the early ’70s which received international attention. This body has had its hands full during the 80’s, to be sure.
Residents of the area have also witnessed the nocturnal and daylight activities of unidentified military aircraft and personnel in the region–and here is where the line between the real and the unreal becomes blurred. One witness to the aerial phenomenon also saw two military choppers–Hueys, by their description–fly into an open valley not far from the shore and promptly disappear, without even betraying the sound of the rotors, as if having engaged a cloaking device. Others have seen the “fireballs” turn into cargo planes and other mundane aerial objects. Those who witnessed this last phenomenon were unnerved by it.
“I wondered why a helicopter landed on that particular field, because I knew that it was private land,” Milton Vélez, another resident, told Jorge Martin, describing an incident from the summer of 1991. “But, I thought, well, they’re probably doing some sort of experiment there. A number of men in olive drab uniforms and black berets got out of the chopper and began to walk around, pointing long tubes at the ground that looked like shotguns or metal detectors to me. There were no emblems on their clothes or on their helicopter, but they were military, without a doubt. They spread out toward the right and the left, and milled around for about 20 to 30 minutes. I went to fetch my binoculars, but I wasn’t able to make out their faces. The chopper finally took off and headed southward, toward the sea.”
Could this covert military activity be a result of the controversial loss of two F-14 Tomcats during an “attack” upon a massive UFO in May 1988? The sequence of photographs taken of this even by abductee Amaury Rivera has been analyzed by number of NASA and civilian experts: they show the maneuvers of an armed fighter just after daybreak around a large, circular object with a star-like pattern and protuberances on its lower hull. One of the fighters, from the BCF 33 “Starfighter” squadron aboard the USS America, was absorbed into (or vaporized by) the UFO. Months after that incident, and another one in which a Delta-shaped UFO absorbed another fighter before the eyes of thousands of witnesses, interceptors were seen flying over populated areas with their full complement of missiles.
The Nuclear card
Toward the end of October 1984, two commercial cargo vessels arrived at the small port of Arroyo on the southern shore of Puerto Rico, which faces the Caribbean Sea. The ships, Nautilus II and Caribbean Adventurer, unloaded a cargo allegedly “to be used by NASA”, although its real purpose remains unknown. Word began to circulate among the ranks of UFO investigators that the equipment was space-connected, but hardly NASA related.
Nuclear weapons, the story went, were being tested in Puerto Rico against UFO bases allegedly nestled in the deep cavern systems that riddle the island. The story was decried as a groundless rumor: the Treaty of Tlatelolco, banning the deployment of nuclear weapons in Latin America, had been ratified in 1967 by the United States, and the Senate had, in 1981, approved of the inclusion of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico into the Nuclear Free Zone guaranteed by the treaty. The fact that the rumor included the “nonexistent” but ever-present UFOs made it only worse.
But the very same naysayers were given something to think about when, on February 15, 1985, months after the arrival of the “NASA cargo” at Arroyo, the New York Times made it known that Reagan Administration planners had included Puerto Rico in a list of military emergency sites in case of a nuclear war . The nature of the emergency was left open, but it clearly involved the stationing of nuclear devices or the deployment of systems already in place. The Institute for Policy Studies issued a lengthy statement, stating:”…There is real danger here [in Puerto Rico]. There is a military nuclear infrastructure so huge and complex that it has, in some ways, more power than policies. Those bases, facilities and plans obligate us to move in a certain direction in a conflict.”
If this part of the rumor was true, what kept the second half–the one involving unidentified flying objects–from being true as well?
A quiet battle against the UFO phenomenon has been conducted for the past few years in the blue skies over Puerto Rico, which has been notorious for the sheer volume of sightings that have occurred there since the 1950s, and particularly during the 1970s. The sightings have been so numerous that they prompted the Civil Defense Agency of PR to issue Investigative Directive No. 1-91 on October 7th, 1991, which reads: “In the past and more recently there have been sightings of unidentified flying objects (UFOs) and unidentified submarine objects (USOs) in the territory of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Pursuant to Article 6, clause F of Law No. 22 of 23 June 1976, we have deemed that is fitting and proper for the Puerto Rico Civil Defense to investigate and study cases involving sightings of unidentified flying objects so as to determine that they pose no threat to the safety of the Puerto Rican people…”
Into this highly charged atmosphere of UFO conflict and government installation of nuclear devices came Project Excalibur, a device to be employed in the destruction of subsurface UFO installations being perfected at the Experimental Weapons division of LANL (Los Alamos, New Mexico). The prototypes were to be used in Puerto Rico before being used “elsewhere”. This experimentation, construed by many to be the actual offensive against the UFO bases, has resulted in a number of subterranean detonations and an increase in the number of tremors felt on the island in the past decade. On May 31, 1987, one such detonation was estimated as having occurred at a depth of 81,000 feet below Laguna Cartagena: there were cracks on the ground and noxious blue smoke was vented from the earth’s interior through them. UFOs were seen on evening of the explosion in the lagoon’s environs, slowly scanning the area as if checking for damage. Cartagena, a kidney-shaped body of water, has a long history of being at the center of UFO activity, possibly providing an entry/egress point to the underground installations.
The alleged deployment of Project Excalibur coincided with the verifiable plan to deploy a type of tactical nuke or demolition mine known as the B-57, probably similar to those used in Western Europe as part of the NATO “tripwire” against any advance by the now defunct Warsaw Pact’s forces. Tactical nuclear devices (kiloton-yield) go back to the days of the infamous “Davy Crockett”–an atomic bazooka a soldier was supposed to sling off his APC and fire at an approaching tank. These warheads are stored at the Roosevelt Roads Naval Base along with “in transit” weapons and specialized nuclear underwater demolition charges for the use of highly-trained Navy SEAL personnel. The fact that the smallest of the Greater Antilles has been used as a testing station by the military cannot be overlooked either: chemical weapons have been tested in the Luquillo Experimental Rainforest (El Yunque), and the contraceptive pill was tested on Puerto Rican women in the 1950s.
Project Excalibur and all that surrounds it, then, no longer seems to be so improbable. The island is in fact riddled with caves, particularly the western end of the Cordillera Central, the range that splits the island in two. The caves found along the Camuy River extend along for some eight miles, and rank among the most important cavern systems in the world, and every passing year adds a newly discovered cave to the system. The discovery of the series of caves known as the Angeles system in 1972 coincided with the onset of the great UFO flap of ’72-74. With almost 2000 caves scattered over an area of 100 x 35 miles, one can say that Puerto Rico is virtually hollow inside. An excellent place to hide a squadron of UFOs.
The equipment utilized to bore out these deep tunnels does not belong to the realm of science fiction, either. Upon completion of the Channel Tunnel linking the United Kingdom and France, the colossal tunnel borers were encased in concrete and buried in the tunnel’s sides, since they were much too large to bring back to the surface. Author Richard Sauder has also discussed the existence of “subterrenes”, both conventional and nuclear, employed in the perforation of bedrock for the creation of underground facilities.
Puerto Rico also boasts unexploited deposits of strategic minerals such as nickel, cobalt and copper, which are all vital to the nuclear weapons industry, even after the demise of the Soviet Union and the current lack of a clear-cut nuclear deterrent policy. As it so happens, UFOs (whatever they may be) have shown an interest in these metals: Since 1987, UFO sightings have been concentrated around the copper-rich municipality of Adjuntas, nested amid the mountains of the Cordillera Central. There exists considerable photo and video evidence of landing marks and nocturnal activity in the area, including the destruction of enormous steel plates used to cover the test pits dug into the copper mines.
The scaling down of the arms race after the break-up of the USSR has also lessened fears of an East-West nuclear exchange, but what of the nuclear devices already in place, particularly those in Puerto Rico? Perhaps they will remain there, readily available for another no less ominous purpose.
The victims of a recent abduction experience–a couple and their three children–in this part of the island were told by their captors that there were indeed bases near the island of Mona and south of the Cabo Rojo lighthouse. While this has not been confirmed by physical means, it is curious that the string of earth tremors that has been affecting the entire island of Puerto Rico is located in the Mona Passage. These tremors have registered 4.5 and higher on the Richter scale.
The earthquake whose epicenter was located five miles beneath the controversial Laguna Cartagena was dismissed by geologists as routine seismic activity, but residents of the area who felt it described it a “tons of dynamite being set off” and reported bluish fumes emerging from the lagoon’s waters.
There can be no question that the island’s unique political situation–an unincorporated territory of the U.S. functioning as an autonomous “commonwealth”–has enabled the military to exercise greater freedom in the pursuit of its goals. Properties (such as the territory surrounding Laguna Cartagena) can be condemned by the military with little effort, whereas similar efforts in the U.S. mainland would meet vociferous public opposition. Soldiers can aim weapons freely against unsuspecting civilians who happen to stumble upon their concealed installations.
It has also been noted that the underground detonations are not restricted to Cartagena: Marcial and Viola Cruz, a couple residing near El Yunque Rainforest, have experienced subsurface explosions since 1987 at both El Yunque and El Verde. As recently as October 1993, the Cruzes felt four astoundingly loud explosions in the vicinity of La Mina Waterfall. The witnesses, who felt the ground quake beneath their feet, are certain that these detonations were subterranean.
Unlike the conspiracies which have been studied in the U.S., there is no “paper trail” leading to government involvement, merely tell-tale actions and statements, such as the unusual comment made by congressman Bennett Johnson, who stated that regardless of the political destiny selected by Puerto Ricans (full statehood or independence), the U.S. would never relinquish its control over its Roosevelt Roads facility nor El Yunque Rainforest. Some might consider such a statement damning enough: proof that nuclear weapons, outlawed by treaty, are being deployed in Puerto Rico against something or someone, extraterrestrial or not. In the meantime, those who work and live by the sea continue to see strange lights in the sky, and wonder.
Few archeaeological treasures have received the coverage give to the Crystal Skulls allegedly found in Mexico and which have been invested with all kinds of supernatural powers.
An article appearing in Spain’s AŃO CERO magazine suggests that at least one of these quartz crania–acquired in 1898 by the British Museum–has been subjected to a battery of tests by analysts at Kingston University. The results are not good: the experts believe that the kind of quartz employed in the skull’s manufacture is not of a type found in Mexico, it betrays no signs of the tools employed to sculpt it, and furthermore, its teeth appear to have been carved out on a jewelry lathe.
The article goes on to suggest that the most important thing left to do at this moment is to date the period in history when this priceless work of art was crafted. If it should turn out to correspond with the heyday of the Aztec Empire, the mystery would still endure, particularly because there is no way it could have been crafted by human hands.
(CR: Dr. Rafael A. Lara)
by Carlos Ferguson
[SAMIZDAT was unable to present its readers with a detailed picture of this controversial (possibly hoaxed?) event which shook Argentina last summer. This article, which originally appeared in Argentina’s defunct Fenómeno Ovni magazine, has been forwarded to us by Dr. Ricardo Calderón Bernal, our correspondent in Mendoza, Argentina–Ed.]
The details surrounding this case have been spread throughout the media, and we were able to expand on them in an intervio with pilot Rubén Cipuzak (Cmdr. of the Gendarmerie). But what interests us at this moment is to review a number of similar incidents which have transpired in our country. The most significant ones are the following:
- August 11, 1964: In Ushuaia (Tierra del Fuego) a Beechcraft 5G2 aircraft had just requested permission from the local airport control tower to land at 1700 hrs, when a glowing UFO suddenly followed the small plane for a number of minutes. Captain Raul Salgado (an experienced pilot) decided to direct his aircraft toward the intruder, but the UFO outdistanced him at a prodigious speed.
- August 1965: Punta Indio Aeronaval Base. As a result of the large amount of sightings which had taken place, the Argentinean Navy decided to track UFOs with radar and by means of chase planes. The operation was under the command of Captain Omar Pagani and other naval officers. During one event, a strange echo was picked up on the radar screen. A Navy jet was scrambled after the intruder, but the UFO managed to elude its pursuer repeatedly. The pilot reported that the object had an “ellipsoid” configuration, being some 12 meters in diameter and as close to his interceptor as 200 meters, at one point.
- September 23, 1984: In the vicinity of Reconquista (province of Santa Fé), pilot Carlos Sorini was flying a Piper LV Mee carrying seven passengers. At 2100 hours, both pilot and passenger observed the evolutions of a UFO which interfered with the small plane’s instrumentation. The radiocompass oscillated between 0.05 degrees and 270 degrees. The UFO was also detected by Flight 760 of Aerolíneas Argentinas and by Flight 61 of Austral Airlines. The witnesses stated that this odyssey lasted 45 minutes.
- August 18, 1985: In the vicinity of Ceres (Santa Fé), 2 UFOs were sighted by a number of journalists aboard a Boeing 737. One of them, Roberto Ruiz, of Buenos Aires’ Clarin was able to take a sequence of 36 photographs of the object. The UFO changed colors and performed an array of maneuvers. The event took place at 2100 hrs. that day.
- August 20, 1985: Town of Charata, Resistencia (Chaco Province), from 0700 to 1600 hours. A UFO was reported in a number of communities throughout the day. Hugo Weschbilling (Air Traffic Controller at Resistencia) witnessed the object. At 0755 hrs., the captain of an Aerolíneas Argentinas 747 reported the object at 90 degrees to his aircraft, and that it was performing a series of rising and descending maneuvers. The bizarre object was also reported by other aircraft.
This small sampling speaks volumes, showing us that similar cases have been reported in the past. Foremost among them is the astonishment that their luminosity and maneuvers cause among pilots, who are eminently qualified observers. This year (1995) in China’s Guizhu Province, the pilot of a Boeing 737 coming in for a landing had to make quick course corrections to avoid colliding against a rhomboidal UFO with flashing yellow and red lights. The object was also tracked by radar from the ground.
A similarly impressive event transpired on July 26, 1995 in San José, Costa Rica: a colossal UFO was detected on the radar screens of the Tobías Bolańos Airport. Pilot Everardo Carmona was conducting a training mission when he sighted the UFO, which he later described as “enormous, ovoidal and brilliant.” Tower Controllers Gerardo Giménez and Javier Mayorga confirmed that their instruments suffered magnetic alterations for a few seconds.
In the light of the Bariloche event, some skeptics and naysayers sought in vain for a “more logical explanation” to the apparition. This is hardly new. In 1965, when the military issued an official communiqué concerning UFO incursions in the Antarctic (Deception Island), there were those who stated that what the soldiers on site had observed and proven through magnetic readings was almost surely “a natural phenomenon of that region”: a curious oval phenomenon with its own magnetic effects and maneuers, which had also been seen by Chilean and British bases. The Bariloche Case has proven that “30 years is no time at all” and that other voices still clamor in an effort to “explain away.”
These voices now say this could merely be “an effort aimed at distracting the public’s attention.” This is the belief of Alejandro Vega Osorio, director of the Mobile Astronomical Observatory, who went on the record in the Página 12 newspaper. On a personal level, Osorio confirmed his explanation to me, without being able to substantiate it, of course.
But the most childish and laughable of all the explanations ventilated on the subject was the one pinning the blame on the Moon as the source of what Captain Polanco and other pilots in Bariloche had seen. This is not the first nor the last time that an attempt to justify a case is made: if it cannot be explained as a weather baloon, there is an infinity of objects that can be used to explain it.
Therefore, we have heard that “Jupiter” wanders below the cloud cover in the skies over Mar del Plata on some occasions. Faced with a case such as Bariloche (qualified witnesses, multiple effects) it was undoubtable that the naysayers should try to “explain” what had happened. When they were unable to resort to their usual “chesnuts”: alcoholism or hallucinations among the rural population.
Dr. Willie Smith (a physicist and researcher from the U.S.) said to us in regard to a similar case: “…these people who believe pilots are easily confused by anything should quit flying if they really believe what they’re saying…”
The Moon, a source of inspiration for Shakespeare, Schopenhauer and Whitman (among others), also heightens the skeptics’ imagination, letting us know that even at the dawn of a new century, we can still laugh in amazement at explanations of this nature.
…and the Death of one of the Bariloche Pilots
On October 6, 1995, the news was circulated that four members of the Air Gendarmerie had died in an aviation accident. One of the victims was Cmdr. Juan Domingo Gaitán, who alongside Aerolíneas Argentinas pilot Jorge Polanco, had witnessed the Bariloche UFO on July 31.
No details were made available as to the reasons behind this tragic accident, although many followers of the South American UFO scene believe that an effort to “silence” the witnesses of the Bariloche UFO had been set in motion.
The editors of Fenómeno OVNI said it best when they observed: “We do not endeavor to explain this tragic event, wondering if it was a simple misfortune, an act of fate or a phenomenon beyond our comprehension…”
(CR: Dr. Ricardo Calderón)
By Jon Strauss
A gigantic rectangular UFO was seen by hundreds of people the night of January 27, 1996 near Veracruz, Mexico. At around 10 p.m., during a thunderstorm, the UFO approached the city’s harbor from the northeast. Witnesses said they saw two bright flashes in the night sky before the UFO crossed the beach. The object might have been taking advantage of the lightning bolts, using their electromagnetic pulse to duck the NORAD and Mexican radar systems.
One eyewitness who saw the huge object was Pedro Alaniz, a cropdusting pilot from Texas who has 20/20 vision. Alaniz was driving a semi on Camino (Highway) 180, heading south to Alvarado, when he saw the UFO. He said the object was flying from the northeast to the southwest at a speed of 200 miles per hour. He estimated that its altitude was 600 feet.
Alaniz gave a very detailed description of the UFO, reporting that the object’s front end was as flat and square as a box. The UFO was approximately 100 yards long, with bright white lights along the underside running from the front to the stern. The tail took up about onethird of the whole object and had five fingerlike projections jutting out from it.A pale blue light was on the left side of the object near the tail.
Dozens of Mexicans saw the UFO as it flew toward Cosamaloapan. It was reportedly videotaped by several witnesses.
There are two sites in the area that may have interested the UFO’s crew. The Mexican Air Force has an air station at Minatitlan, 118 miles south of Alvarado. Also, there are mysterious preToltec ruins at Zempoala 20 miles north of Vera Cruz.
By Sebastián Rodríguez Galindo
Oviedo Cathedral (Spain) preserves the relic of the Holy Shroud, the cloth used to cover the face of Christ after his crucifixion, and which according to tradition, was brought to Spain from Palestine.
Aided by modern technology, academic Angel del Campo has undertaken the reconstruction of what could be the actual face of Jesus based upon blood stains found on the shroud, whose DNA happens to coincide with that of similar samples found on the “Holy Shroud” of Turin, Italy. The project was placed on exhibit in Madrid in September 1995.
(CR: Manuel Carballal)
By Sebastián Rodríguez Galindo
The alleged apparitons of the Virgin Mary have caused a renewed sensation in the Spanish city of Toledo, causing many thousands of faithful to undertake pilgrimages to this location in order to witness the miraculous phenomenon.
In this case, it has been a 15 year old named María del Rosario Rubio who claims to have seen the Virgin. But a second mystery can be heaped on top of the first one: after her initial vision in August 1993, she developed stigmata on her abdomen, some of which have formed, on certain occasions, a perfectly drawn cross.
The teenager, known as Rosa Mari to her friends, is one of four adolescents who claimed to have seen the Virgin Mary in July 1992 in the locality of Huecas, some 50 kilometers away from Toledo proper.
The stigmata began to appear after Rosa Mari dreamed with a cross in August 1993, and disappeared in October of that same year. Once the stigmata were gone, five months would elapse before they reappeared in 1994. The percipient feels no pain as a result of these marks.
The apparitions in Huecas have attracted more than 14,000 people to a township with a population of 500. Audiotapes discussing the circumstances behind the apparitions have made the rounds of the town, along with a minute-long videotape showing the stigmata on Rosa Mari’s body. (CR: Manuel Carballal)
(Mundo Paranormal, Oct. 1995)
On the morning of September 11, 1995, the remains of what was undoubtedly a gigantic squid were found on Huelva’s Matalascańas Beach, to the utter amazement of beachcombers. The municipal police was forced to use a tow truck to remove the dead squid, which was measured at 7.5 meters (24 feet) in length and weighing almost 200 kilograms (440 pounds).
The squid only had three of its tentacles remaining. In spite of its state of decomposition, it was apparent that its missing members could have been sliced off by the propellers of a passing ship. Once dead, the colossal cephalopod was dragged by the current to Huelva, where it amazed hundreds of astonished onlookers.
By Iker Jiménez
An untruth which has been concealed for a very long period of time and of which ARP (Spain’s equivalent of CSICOP–Ed.) has always boasted is the notorious “extraterrestrial toad” featured on the cover of Issue#9 of LAR. And since all that matters here is to provide hard, cold facts, we can do no less than jeer at the statements made by “field investigators” Ares de Blas and Luis A. Gámez in said magazine.
The event took place in the industrial suburb of Zurbaranbarri (Bilbao) in August 1976. A series of strange repetitive noises had been captured on audiotape by a family of 4 who was simultaneously seeing an orange-red light hovering some 55 meters away from their home. The cassette tape clearly collected the repetitive sound, and was passed from researcher to researcher as bearing relation to the UFO sighting which lasted for almost 3 hours. Ares and Gámez, faced with an abundance of strange stories, visited the location in 1984, interviewed a few subjects “at random” and rendered their historic verdict. In page 9 of LAR No.9 (May 1988) the say the possibility that the light was produced by an iron blast furnace from the nearby Heva Echavarria S.A. company had to be discarded, since such an industrial maneuver never lasts longer than 20 minutes. Nevertheless, surprise! on page 10 of the same publication, they did not hesitate to confirm that the phenomenon lasted some 3 hours, coinciding with the blast furnace’s usual timing. The verdict had been passed. The UFO was merely a blast furnace that had been misidentified by the witnesses. Is there any difference at all between 3 hours and 20 minutes? Should we believe that such slight differences are logical in ARP’s investigation procedures? But let us continue.
According to the dynamic duo, the sounds were produced by an alytes obstetricans, the midwife toad. In the course of their investigation, Ares and Gámez ran into a member of this species, took a snapshot of it, and passed judgement on it. Had the family, with its long years of living in the area, never heard one? What of the fact that no event resembling the UFO sighting had ever been reported? What of the fact that out of all the sexually active toads only one was recorded? For this reason, ufologists have rechristened ARP’s investigation as “The Case of the Masturbating Toad.”
Such questions are considered banalities by our learned scientists: the mating call of a toad and a blast furnace.
“Scientific ufologists” also share in the guilt. J.F Peris and V.J Ballester-Olmos, another dynamic duo that investigated the case, felt no compunction when it came to issuing verdicts. Their Enciclopedia de los encuentros cercanos con ovnis (Encyclopedia of UFO Close Encounters) is a fine bestiary of “weird critters.” Examples abound: 3.22.66 – humanoid in Málaga- Verdict: Probable Ape; 7.23.77 “same” in Manises – Verdict: Ape, without a doubt; etc. etc. I was completely unaware of the abundance of apes in Andalusia and in the orange groves of southern Spain. What about you?
This is the sad tale of “biological-ufological-scientific verdicts”. All’s fair as long as there are no UFOs involved. By the way, I have been thinking about the following entry for many years: 6.13.52 – humanoid seen in Córdoba – Verdict: human foetus...someone please explain!
(CR: Manuel Carballal)
by Manuel Carballal
Fraud does not feed exclusively on the gullible. While on many occasions we have challenged the lies and deceptions of phony clairvoyants, this time we aim our critical eye against another kind of phony–who conceal themselves behind an awkward pseudoscientific disguise and try to milk the world of the mysterious for their own benefit. The history of science is filled with such examples: nothing heavier than air could fly, electricity was a useless and transient fashion, and stones could not possibly rain down from the sky because there aren’t any stones in the sky. In spite of these categorical assertions, airplanes fly, electricity controls our civilization, and meteorites exist.
There exists today a group of pseudoscientists who falsely label themselves “skeptics” and have systematically launched attacks against any unorthodox statements regarding the unknown. I use the term pseudoscientits because Voltaire state that “ignorance denies or confirms, but wisdom always doubts.” This is what is really meant by the term “skeptic”–(s)he who doubts. Nonetheless, the adjectives that pseudoscientists employ to describe anomalous phenomena leaves no room for doubt: “foolishness,” “idiocy,” “stupidities”…Their privileged minds have no need of visiting the scene where the events transpired nor of interrogating witnesses to draw conclusions. This posture was quite evident in one of their publications (La Alternativa Racional, No. 32, pag. 42) which critiqued a book by renowned ufologist Josep Guijarro. Luis Alfonso Gámez, ringleader of Spanish skepticism, condemned Guijarro’s book, Infiltrados (Infiltrators) in the following manner: “After reading the author’s name on the cover, the fear of losing my mental integrity kept me from reading any further. Better to be a live coward than a brainless hero.” Of course, only mere mortals are forced to read a book in order to pass judgement on it. But didn’t they say that ESP didn’t exist?
In May 1976, a conference sponsored by the American Humanist Association in the U.S. gave birth to CSICOP, the “Vatican” of the pseudo-skeptic movement (I refuse to accept the term skeptic to describe this fundamentalist pseudoscientific movement), which in turn spawned similar groups in other countries, such as the Argentinean Center for the Investigation and Rebuttal of Pseudosciences or Spain’s Rational Alternative to Pseudosciences (ARP). In Spain, for example, self-described “skeptics” have become the habitual guests of all debates on UFOs, parapsychology or paranormal phenomena. It is suspicious that they should only find an audience in this kind of program, rather than in colloquia or debates proper to their respective disciplines, which has led some authors to believe that pseudo-skeptics manage to sublimate in this manner their academic mediocrity (applicable to the few holding degrees), achieving fame, popularity and money by systematically attacking all paranormal phenomena. It is obvious that fraud and misidentification can be found in the realm of so-called anomalous phenomena, but as is true for every field of research, dedication and experience in a particular discipline is essential in order to pass reasonable verdicts on it. For this very reason, only experts in physics may issue solid opinions on physics, only astronomers may speak knowledgeably about astronomy, and only doctors may properly issue medical diagnoses. Why is it then that unspecialized journalists, doctors, insurance agents, or computer programmers can pass radical judgements against all paranormal phenomena in UFO, parapsychological and other debates? Why don’t ufologists and parapsychologists appear in forums to debate information science, biology or astronomy? The result is that the statements made by these pseudo-skeptics are often ridiculous and would often be amusing if they weren’t so pathetic. Andrés San Juan, scientific advisor to ARP and an expert in the sex life of flies (he wrote his dissertation on this “entrancing” subject), accused institutions of higher learning of wasting time and money in parapsychic research, which only withdrew funds from other more scientifically important subjects (such as sodomy among the flies of Patagonia, I suppose). Jesús Martínez Villaro, former editor of La Alternativa Racional, ARP’s bulletin, stated that the UFO tape recorded in Bilbao was in fact a masturbating midwife toad (I say masturbating, because the mating call of a single midwife toad was picked up). Then there are the categorical affirmations made by these “scientists”, such as that the majority of the UFOs seen over Spain (by pilots, meteorologists, etc.) were the result of ball lightning…Ball lighting, masturbating toads, sex life of flies–one could mischievoulsy believe that that skeptics are faced with some sort of libidinal defect. The fact of the matter is that investigators recently discovered that one of the greatest hoaxes perpetrated in the history of Spanish ufology, the UMMO affair, had been perpetrated by precisely one of these “skeptics”, who took advantage of the myth to act out his sadomasochistic fantasies.
Of course, we are all free to do what we wish with our sexuality, so long as it does not involve abusing public credulity to abuse our neighbors, shielded behind a fake scientific rigidity. Needless to say, Freud could have drawn suggestive conclusions out of the explanations given by pseudo-skeptics to a great number of paranormal pehenomana. It is interesting that during a recent graphological analysis performed on five “field investigators” and five “armchair investigators”, that at least three of the latter revealed indications of curious sexual behavior and even hints of madness.
But “skeptical sex” is the least of our worries. The explanations given by some of the patriarchs of “scientific ufology” should fill us with terror. Some cases involving UFO landings have been explained away as misidentifications of Venus, “an oil drum”, “a foetus”, “seaweed”, “a running object” (?), “Red Cross workers”, a “house window”, a traffic light, a “maritime oil drum”, a tent, an ape, an owl, the “fantasy of a deaf-mute”, a priest, and a “truck wheel”. At least a truck wheel, being circular, is reminiscent of a UFO, but how can one mistake a UFO for a priest, an ape or an owl? Are deaf-mutes more prone to UFO fantasies than anyone else? What is a “running object”? It should come as no surprise that UFO witnesses should want no further contact with researchers when a “scientist” tells them that the UFO they just saw was an oil drum, or a human foetus (?). It’s another way of calling them imbeciles.
A few weeks ago, these illustrious “scientists” solved the most thoroughly documented UFO case in Spain. On November 11, 1979, a UFO caused a Supercaravelle to make an emergency landing in Manises Airport, a jet fighter to scrambled after the UFO, pursuing it for hundreds of miles, and consternation among controllers, airport personnel and the residents of Manises. According to these “scientists” the UFO was really the smokestacks of a factory in Argelia (?). Thus, the fact that a fighter pilot can be told that what he chased all over the skies of Spain was in fact the smokestacks of a factory in Algiers is considered “serious ufology”. Faced with such pronouncements, those of us who do not subscribe to the ETH (Extraterrestrial Hypothesis) for the UFO enigma, must accept that it applies to ufologists as the ETHilic Hypothesis, since no one can talk so much foolishness while sober. Unless there are hidden interests to be explained, no matter how ridiculous the explanation, everything remains a mystery. What could such hidden interests be? Perhaps the answer can be found in a letter from Felix Ares de Blas, ARP’s founder and “spiritual” leader. In this letter, the leading Spanish “skeptic” made it clear that he charges a quarter million pesetas (US $2000) for participating in each conference against paranormal phenomena. Of course, if the conference is held in English, the price rises accordingly. The fact is that faced with such lucrative honoraria, it is easy to understand the reason for all the viscerality in demonstrating that the paranormal does not exist.
It doesn’t matter if they attack our jugular in the name of spirituality or of science. The phonies drain the lifeblood of the world of the unknown as readily from one extreme as from another, and we all know that extremes make contact.
(CR: Manuel Carballal–Reprinted from EL OJO CRITICO)
Not even the abnormally cold winter of ’95-96′ could keep SAMIZDAT from venturing to warmer climes. Regular readers know that the past five months have been active to the point of frenzy between the depredations of the Chupacabras in Puerto Rico and religious phenomena taking place thoughout Spain.
SAMIZDAT had the pleasure of participating in a number of radio debates concerning Puerto Rico’s elusive gargoyle: Paul Williams and Daaiya Lomax of WBAI in New York asked your editor to appear on their program on March 17, 1996. This initial appearance led to more discussions on the Chupacabras and the Latin American UFO scene on the Scott Anderson Show in Phoenix, AZ; Marshall Bell’s hour-long Our Weird World (WERE, Cleveland) and other local talk shows. It was exciting to see how interest has developed not only in the specific case being discussed, but in Latin American/Iberian ufology as a whole.
Did you notice our cover illistration for this issue? It’s “subliminal advertising” for our upcoming Special Report: Mexico 1996, in which we shall turn over the controls to Dr. Rafael A. Lara (as we did last summer) for a magical mystery tour into the seamier side of UFO research in the land of the Aztecs. Later this year, the Samizdat Press will have the pleasure of making Dr. Lara’s research on Mexico’s Zone of Silence available to U.S. readers, and we look forward to receiving fascinating information on UFO sightings in Mexico during the 18th and 19th centuries taken from Dr. Lara’s monumental archives. His endless supply of clippings undoubtedly earns him the title of “the Mexican Charles Fort.” We are pleased to welcome Dr. Lara as SAMIZDAT’s very first Contributing Editor.
Samizdat Press’s maiden release, The Chupacabras Diaries, has been well-received and thanks go out to all of our readers who supported this endeavor. You probably noticed that Summer ’96 was “Chupacabras Free”–not by design, but because sightings diminished exactly a year after the original mutilations investigated by Jorge and Marleen Martin had taken place. This lends credence to the paranormal theory of the creature’s origin.
Our correspondent in Spain, Manuel Carballal, had the misfortune of being stuck in Madrid doing his excellent radio show while the most furious UFO wave in the past 50 years was unleashed in the shies over Galicia, his homeland! Manuel has since returned and has collected an assortment of plaster casts of landing marks and other intriguing evidence. We look forward to passing on his research to out readers. Manuel had also had the good fortune of having three books published within the last year.
How are we doing? Are there areas of interest you would be interested in seeing us cover? Are there things that you would really like us to stop doing? We need your feedback! E-mail us at [email protected] or drop us a line at PO Box 228, Derrick City, PA 16727-0228.
ĄHasta la proxima!