Unidentified Flying Objects
One of the mysteries that have yet to be solved is the Unidentified Flying Objects or UFOs. As its name implies, a UFO is an aerial object that cannot be immediately scrutinized and identified upon initial sighting (Booth, n. p. ). In other words, kites, helicopters, airplanes, jets, and any other flying objects that cannot be classified as something made on earth are described as UFOs. In general, the basic descriptions of UFOs could either be cigar-shaped, bowl, saucer, or triangular-shaped with nocturnal lights (Russell, n. p.
). Over the past decades or so, there have been multiple reports of UFO sightings from various places across the globe. Although its basic description and definition simply means that these objects cannot be identified, several reports and claims have led many to believe that UFOs are actually products of aliens or life forms from other planets. Possibly the most popular belief is that these aerial phenomenon are alien spacecrafts or flying saucers that contain alien beings who are making their first contact with the planet Earth.
Another popular claim is that these extraterrestrial beings came to the planet to observe humans beings and abduct them for experimentation. Some also believe that past UFO sightings are hoax aircraft and are merely conspiracies by certain countries while others claim that all information surrounding UFOs are being kept as a secret by powerful countries such as the United States. All these beliefs and claims have eventually been infused into pop culture which has resulted in movies, cartoons, books, and research on UFOs.
However, despite all these reports about UFO sightings, up to this day, no one has verified the true origin and nature of UFOs. In addition, researchers and believers from all around the globe have not found any conclusive evidence yet which would prove that life exists outside Earth nor have they proven that UFOs are alien in nature. In this regard, this research paper will discuss the history, issues, and theories about UFOs in an attempt to shed light on this phenomenon. Early History of UFOs
Although the first official sightings of UFOs happened in 1947, which is called the modern age of UFO reports, there were already symbols and objects that depict UFOs during the earlier centuries. As early as 5,000 to 4,000 B. C. , small lizard like figurines and statues were discovered in Iraq (Crystal Links). In Nepal, approximately 7,000, B. C. , an object called the Lolladoff plate was uncovered. The plate apparently shows a disk-shaped object hovering in the background, which represents the modern image of UFOs, and a little being that resembles an alien.
In Val Camonica Italy, a cave painting that was believed to be created in 10,000 B. C. , was found and apparently portrays two beings wearing odd suits and holding strange objects. In Mexico, a 7,000 year-old petroglyph was discovered in 1966, depicting 4 figures with their arms stretched beneath a large oval object that is seemingly radiating light (Crystal Links). In Tanzia, two cave paintings estimated to be 29,000 years old were discovered. One of the paintings depicts multiple disc-like objects while the other one shows four strangely-shaped beings surrounding a woman as if she was about to be abducted.
(Crystal Links). In Australia, two 5,000 year-old petroglyphs were discovered and they depicted multiply beings with large black eyes that may represent alien life forms. In Japan, diggers found a relief in an island of Jotou that depicted men in strange suits who were inside a disc shaped crafts similar to modern illustrations of UFOs (Crystal Links). Furthermore, similar symbols, paintings, and sculptures were also discovered in Germany and Rome, among others. In addition, certain historical accounts claim that Alexander the Great had two UFO encounters during his conquest of other countries.
In 329, during his attack on Asia, he and his men saw something which they described as luminous, silver shields in the sky. According to their accounts, these shining shields swooped down on the troops on the ground and created panic among them (Crystal Links). Moreover, when Alexander was invading a city in the Mediterranean, soldiers from both sides reportedly saw unknown objects suddenly appear in the sky. They claimed that one of these aerial objects blasted a beam of light at the city walls, which destroyed it and enabled the men of Alexander to easily conquer the Mediterranean city (Crystal Links).
Moreover, many also believe that UFO sightings cab even be traced in religious images and paintings. “The Baptism of Christ painting”, which was created by Flemish artist Aert De Gelder in 1710, depicts a hovering, saucer shaped object shining its beams of light on Jesus Christ and John the Baptist (Crystal Links). Another painting, “The Madonna with Saint Giovannino, which was done by Domenico Ghirlandaio, shows a hovering disc-like object on Mary’s right shoulder. The painting was blown up and further scrutiny showed that the disc-like object was radiating several beams of light from its body, much like the modern concept of UFOs.
Furthermore, certain ancient Egyptian paintings, sculptures, and, hieroglyphics also depict the existence of a race that was far sophisticated and superior to the humans. It is also a popular belief that the triangular shape of the pyramids in Egypt were created by UFOs In short, even though it is widely accepted that the first official UFO sighting took place in 1947, there were already accounts of these objects during the earlier times. This is the reason that many believe that aliens possess highly advanced technology, which enabled them to visit the planet even before UFOs were officially documented.
UFO Sightings and Cases There have been hundreds of reported UFO sightings over the past decades but only a few dozens of them are significant. The first widely believed UFO report in the United States happened in June 24, 1947, after pilot Kenneth Arnold claimed that he saw nine unusual flying objects near Mount Rainier in Washington (UFO Evidence. org). According to Arnold’s account, these objects were shaped like a saucer or a flat disc, prompting the press from all around the world to coin the now-popular terms such as flying disc and flying saucer.
Moreover, Arnold’s report was on the front pages of various newspapers both inside and outside the United Stats and also sparked hundreds of reports on flying saucer sightings across the country. However, the United States Air Force dismissed Arnold’s report as simply a mirage. On the other hand, certain UFO proponents criticized the US Air Force’s conclusion due to its lack of logical explanation on Arnold’s claims. Furthermore, Arnold’s report is now widely considered as the modern age of UFOs. Another highly significant case was the July 1947 UFO crash in Roswell, New Mexico, more than a month after Arnold’s report.
In this case, several people claimed that they saw a large metallic aircraft shaped like disc together along with alien bodies beside it near a ranch in Roswell (Booth, n. p. ). After the eyewitnesses reported the incident to the authorities, military personnel quickly secured the supposed UFO crash site and claimed that the debris found were merely from a weather surveillance balloon that possibly malfunctioned and not from a flying saucer (Booth, n. p. ). However, the eyewitnesses as well as the other UFO proponents debunked the military’s claims and called it a cover-up.
Despite the military’s conclusion, the Roswell UFO Crash has been the subject of debate as many others believe that the debris found on the crash site were from an alien spacecraft. The USS John F Kennedy’s reported encounter with UFOs in 1971 along the Atlantic Ocean was another classic case that led to worldwide debates. According to the reports of the crew, the carrier ship was just sailing off the coast of South Carolina, when the defense, communications, and navigational devices and electronics started to malfunction (Zuko, n. p. ).
As the officials began checking on the source of the malfunctions, it was announced over the ships intercom that a strange object was hovering over the ship. The crew attempted to activate their weapons system and launch two jets to inspect the object, but failed to do so for reasons unknown up to this day. Based on eyewitness accounts, the UFO appeared as bright golden yellow pulsating light in the form of a solid metallic orb which was 300 feet in diameter (Zuko, n. p. ). When the crew returned to shore, they were de-briefed and were commanded not to disclose certain information without clearance.
UFO Abductions Aside from UFO sightings, there were also several reports about people being abducted by extraterrestrial beings and taken into their alien spacecraft. There were also accounts that claimed that men in black suits, which spawned the movie Men In Black, visited people who saw UFOs and threatened to harm them if they disclosed any information about what they saw (Zerotime. com). One example was the case of Harold Dahl, a person who claimed to have been visited by a man in a black suit a day after seeing UFOs while at sea with his son along Maury Island (Booth, n.
p. ). According to him, the man in the black suit threatened to harm his family if he shared with anyone else anything about the UFOs which he saw. This case was considered a hoax by most people due to Dahl’s lack of proof. UFO Theories and Beliefs In general, there are dozens of theories about UFOs but only a handful of them are popular. Evidently, the most popular belief is that UFOs are the spacecraft of extraterrestrial life forms or aliens who have come to visit the planet.
As mentioned above, this belief also asserts that UFOs are the product of highly advance technology possessed by aliens, enabling them to travel great distances in outer space. This theory also claims that the government has recovered multiple alien spacecraft in the past but has kept them a secret from the public for security purposes (AngelFire. com) Another theory claims that UFOs are simply misidentified natural phenomenon. These phenomena may include odd cloud formations and uncommon activities in outer space such as the popular aurora borealis (AngelFire. com).
In addition, it is also believed, especially by members of the military, that UFOs are misidentifications of unknown technology. In other words, UFO sightings may simply be secret weapons or new aircraft that were manufactured by countries and resemble the modern concepts of alien spacecraft. These new technologies may have not yet been and may never be exposed to the public due to security reasons (AngelFire. com). The inter-dimensional theory, on the other hand, asserts that aliens and other extraterrestrial beings came from other dimensions that are parallel to the planet.
It is also believed that they were able to cross dimensions using sophisticated equipment (AngelFire. com). In other words, this theory claims that aliens live along side humans, which is contrary to the popular belief that these beings came from other planets. Moreover, it is also believed that UFOs are merely terrestrial life forms or beings that live in the most remote places on Earth (AngelFire. com). These places may include the center of the Earth, volcanoes, the planet’s poles, and other unpopulated areas, which is why most people have never seen them.
Although this belief is not as popular as the other theories, it is still being considered by some people because it remains a remote possibility. Another less popular theory claims that UFOs are angelic manifestations. Similar to the inter-dimensional theory, it is believed that these extraterrestrial beings may have jumped from one dimension to another. However, instead of using technological equipment, they utilized spiritual mechanisms, similar to the belief in life after death. In other words, UFOs are angels who have come to visit the planet.
However, what contradicts all of the other theories the most is the belief that UFOs are no more than a government hoax or false creations of people. This theory claims that these so-called extraterrestrial objects are created by countries in order to cause alarm in their rival nations. In addition, it is also believed that most UFOs were orchestrated by people who are thrill seekers and who simply want to seek media attention. In short, this theory asserts that UFOs do not exist as they are merely man-made aircraft. Government Involvement
Due to the massive media attention that UFO reports attract, it is no surprise that various government bodies became involved in its investigation. Among all the government agencies that studied UFOs, possibly the most prominent one is Project Sign, which was an official government study of the United States of America through its Air Force in 1947 (Zerotime. com). The body was created following the massive publicity of Kenneth Arnold’s UFO sighting in June of the same year. Generally, Project Sign did not come to any solid conclusion in their investigation of UFOs.
IT simply stated that the existence of these objects could neither be confirmed nor denied, which is mainly why the government body was dissolved in 1948. However, in its review of various UFO cases, Project Sign also came up with other conclusions which were shown in the letter of Lt. General Nathan F. Twining, who was the overseer of the investigating body, to his superior, Brig. Gen. George Schulgen (Zerotime. com). In his letter to Schulgen, Twining first stated that the UFO phenomenon is real and not imaginary or fictitious.
He also wrote that the shape of the objects reported as UFOs were approximately similar to a disc but stated that there is also a possibility that some of these incidents are the product of natural phenomena, like meteor showers, and not necessarily created by aliens and extraterrestrial beings (Zerotime. com) Furthermore, in his letter, Twining noted that it is possible that these objects originated domestically and may be products of highly-classified government projects that the US Air Force does not know about.
In addition, he also noted the possibility that these objects are the creations of foreign nations and could have nuclear capabilities. Finally, he stated that the lack of physical evidence, particularly in reported UFO crash sites, has hindered Project Sign from coming up with a strong conclusion. Conclusion Based on the various accounts and reports mentioned above, it can then be deduced that the existence of UFOs have not yet been proven up to this day, and therefore should not be taken as truth.
However, with the number of theories and hypotheses about UFOs that are being formulated at present, it is also safe to say that there remains a remote possibility that these alien beings exist. The fact that the United States Air Force, which is a highly sophisticated and advanced military body, cannot deny or verify the existence of these objects means that there are numerous possibilities. In short, it is always best to keep an open mind when it comes to these things and other unsolved mysteries.
Booth Billy. “1947-Maury Island UFO Crash.” 2008. About.com. 23 November 2008 <http://ufos.about.com/od/ufofolkloremythlegend/p/mauryisland.htm>.Sample Essay of EduBirdie.com