In February 1960 a station of the North American Air Defense System picked up a radar echo from an enormous space station orbiting the Earth. This intercept caused panic and alarm throughout America's and the Soviet Union's Defense Departments. It was the wrong kind of orbit for a Soviet launch. The space station was in a polar orbit, whereas the orbits of Soviet satellites were invariably inclined at 65 degrees to the equator, which took the satellites over South America and North Africa. Apart from that, there was no booster on either side of the Atlantic capable of putting such an object into space. American scientists had calculated that the weight of the orbiting station was around 15 tons. For three weeks the Americans kept track of the space station, then it vanished as suddenly as it had appeared.
The February intercept was just the first in a series of strange space phenomena which have baffled scientists worldwide for over three decades. On September 3, 1960, seven months after the first intercept, it was revealed that an unidentified object had been photographed in the sky over New York by a tracking camera at Grumman Aircraft Corporation's Long Island factory. The object, which appeared to emanate a red glow, had been seen several times during the preceding two weeks, apparently following an east-to-west orbit, whereas most satellites were launched in the opposite direction, and its speed appeared to be about three times that of America's Echo 1 "metal balloon" satellite.
The Americans attached so much importance to these mystery sightings that they organized a special committee to gather as much information as possible about them. But the committee's findings, if there were any, were kept secret and the sightings were forgotten.
Then, on May 15th, 1963, a Mercury capsule carrying Gordon Cooper blasted into space from Cape Canaveral on a 22-orbit mission around the world. During the final orbit, Cooper informed the Muchea, Australia tracking station that he could see a glowing, greenish object rapidly approaching his capsule from directly ahead.
Whatever Cooper saw was solid and large enough to be picked up travelling east to west by Muchea's radar. Cooper's sighting was reported by NBC, which was broadcasting live coverage of Cooper's flight, but when Cooper landed, reporters were not allowed to ask him about the sighting. The "official" statement was that Cooper had been hallucinating due to release of poisonous carbon dioxide from an electrical short in the capsule.
But Cooper, who is a firm believer in UFOs and later made the UN speech in which he had referred to aliens, UFOs and interstellar travel, had 10 years earlier seen a UFO while piloting his F-86 Sabrejet over western Germany.
In June 1965, astronauts Ed White--the first American to walk in space and who was later to die with Gus Grissom and Roger Chaffee in a launch-pad fire during a test of an Apollo capsule--and James McDivitt were passing over Hawaii in a Gemini capsule when they observed a strange metallic object some distance away. It appeared to have arms or projections. McDivitt took pictures of it with a motion picture camera. Those films have never been released.
The "official" Air Force explanation was that the two astronauts had seen a Pegasus satellite, which was equipped with broad protruding "arms" to register hits from micro-meteorites. But the Air Force forgot to mention that while the astronauts were over Hawaii, the Pegasus was over 1,000 miles away and could not have been observed.
In December 1965, Gemini astronauts Jim Lovell and Frank Borman also saw something strange in space during the second orbit of their record-breaking 14-day flight around Earth. Borman reported that he was observing an unidentified spacecraft some distance away from their capsule. Gemini Control at Kennedy suggested that he might be seeing the final stage of the huge Titan booster which had lifted him and Lovell into orbit earlier that day.
Borman confirmed the sighting of the booster shining brilliantly in the sunlight. But what he was observing was something different; something he could not explain. Later NASA claimed that Borman had seen the wreckage of a U.S. Air Force rocket that had been blown up during a launch several days earlier. But the Air Force rebuked the claim when they insisted that no wreckage was in that particular orbit. They were placing a series of military recon satellites into orbit, however, and those launches were cloaked in secrecy.
There may be rational explanations for all the NASA sightings and for many of the sighting which occur in America almost daily. For years flying saucer scares were carefully fostered by the Soviet Union to draw attention from sensitive areas and secret experiments. Anything unusual seen in the skies above Sverdlovsk, a town barred to all foreign visitors because it is an important center of Soviet missile production, was attributed to UFO activity.
We suspect every other industrialized nation does the same to protect their "black" projects and secret weapons.
Perhaps some of the most controversial and contradictory information concerning attempts at space communication surrounds the project known as Cyclops.
Fallen Rainbow: Navy downs UFO
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Oh, This Satellite!
The New York Times, January 17, 1994
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Mars has featured in mankind's fantasies and mythology for thousands of years. The planet itself is named after the Roman god of war.
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As if strange symbols appearing on the ground aren't intriguing enough, how about "body symbols"?
Flying Saucers - Then and Now: Nazi Weapons or the New "Final Solution?"
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