Friday, September 03, 2010

New Light on Rendlesham

Dr. David Clarke, a British UFO researcher, has convinced Col. Ted Conrad, the Bentwaters/Woodbridge base commander during the time of the Rendlesham Forest UFO incident in 1980, to give a complete statement about his views as to what happened, which stand in direct contrast to the views that have been presented over the years by his deputy at the time, Col. Charles Halt.

You can read Dr. Clarke's article here. An excerpt from Col. Conrad's statement:

There were no conspiracies, no secret operation, no missile accident, and no harsh interrogations by OSI [Office of Special Investigations, USAF]. I was in a position to know about the OSI. It was a special organisation with a special mission. They had their own chain of command, but in practice the OSI commander kept me informed of any ongoing investigations they had. Someone reporting unexplained lights would not normally have been subject to OSI attention. They were after serious lawbreakers, including drug traffickers, security risk, and the like.

If I have any regrets, it is that I should have challenged Lt Col Halt’s account of the events on the night of 28 December. However since I wanted to avoid the appearance of shaping the story, I was reluctant to require any changes to his letter to Don Moreland [sent to MoD on 13 January 1981]. Also, I think maybe Don Moreland and I should have met over lunch one day to discuss a better way to handle the information in Halt’s letter. Halt’s letter gave us cover by putting Don on the spot. This left Don with the full burden of the letter and its disposition. When the letter was eventually released from MoD, it generated the frenzy of speculative reporting and the inevitable allegations of cover-up.

In the final analysis, the Rendlesham Forest lights remain unexplained. I think they are explainable, but not with the information we have been able to gather.

Theodore J. Conrad.
Col. Conrad goes on to state: "I also think the odds are way high against there being an ET spacecraft involved, and almost equally high against it being an intrusion of hostile earthly craft."

The traditional pro-ET / peo-paranormal view of the Rendlesham incident can be seen in this segment from my film, Best Evidence: Top 10 UFO Sightings, which features Col. Halt and Nick Pope.

What really happened in Rendlesham Forest in December, 1980? I think it remains an open question - indeed, so does Col. Conrad, and so does Dr. Clarke, who writes:

As was the case with the original Roswell incident, there is a great difference between the few certain facts that can be established from contemporary records and the elaborate legend that has grown up around the Rendlesham UFOs. The legend has been nurtured by tabloid headlines and sensational TV documentaries and today is so well known that the Forestry Commission have set up a “UFO trail” in the forest for pilgrims who wish to relive the story in their imagination. As the decades pass attempts to separate fact from fiction become increasingly difficult. All that can be said with certainty is that it is unlikely we will ever know what really happened in Rendlesham forest in December 1980.
Rendlesham has often been referred to as "Britain's Roswell". As Dr. Clarke points out, and as I think should be clear to any objective observer, that appellation is accurate, albeit not necessarily for the reasons that it's pro-ET proponents have suggested.

Paul Kimball

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