Category Archives: Openminds.tv

Openminds.tv

Daily UFO Headlines 8/18/2017

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Daily UFO Headlines 8/17/2017

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Did Fox News catch a UFO buzzing the U.S. Capital?

A video was submitted to a UFO investigation organization showing something zipping in front of the camera during a shot of the U.S. capital building on Fox News.

The video was submitted earlier today to the Mutual UFO Network’s (MUFON) UFO reporting database. The witness did not have much to say. The report simply says, verbatim: “It flew infront of the capital building while I was watching Fox News.”

A video and a screenshot from the video were also included. The witness did indicate the sighting took place in Rolling Meadows, Illinois, presumably the city where the witness lives.

Screenshot of video provided by the witness. (Credit: MUFON)

Screenshot of video provided by the witness. (Credit: MUFON)

In the video, the object appears to be cylindrical and shiny. It moves quickly and steadily from the bottom left of the screen to the upper right. The shape of the object might not indicate the true shape and size of whatever passed in from of the camera. The object was likely close to the camera, making it seem very large. Since it was moving so quickly, the object’s shape could also appear more elongated than it actually is.

Closeup of object in video.

Closeup of object in video.

In many cases such as this, birds and bugs are mistaken for something more mysterious. Motion blur cause the object to appear elongated and large, like a giant flying saucer. However, often in those cases wings flapping cause the object to look like it has ridges or multiple appendages. That effect cannot be seen in this video. I uploaded a version of the video slowed down to 10%, seen above.

So what is it? I dunno. I suppose it could also be a hoax or maybe a yellow frisbee. Take a look at the video yourself and let us know what you think.

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Daily UFO Headlines 8/16/2017

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UFOs Flying Dark

“Lights in the sky” sightings easily comprise the majority of UFO sightings, and have just as easily been dismissed by skeptics as bright stars and planets, conventional aircraft, and—dare I say it?—swamp gas. Now, there is a new bane of a ufologist’s existence—drones. Every kid with an LED-covered quadcopter can spark a viral “UFO” video, even further muddying the already murky waters of “lights in the sky” cases.

Depiction of triangle UFO at night. (Credit: OpenMinds.tv)

Depiction of triangle UFO at night. (Credit: OpenMinds.tv)

So perhaps researchers need to take a step back and look into the darkness—into the far more rare cases of nighttime sightings of craft flying completely dark, without any lights. It’s impossible for skeptics to consign such cases to the “Venus Files” if they are solid, unlit objects. These cases also present a more enticing element, which may or may not be warranted—a somewhat sinister aspect as these craft obviously don’t want to be seen as they are cruising silently just over your head.

The subject of “Dark UFOs” came up recently when I interviewed Lorraine M. about her early 1980s sighting in Putnam County, NY, which was the scene of a major flap in the Hudson Valley which lasted several years.

“I was leaving a party with my friends,” Lorraine explained in a detailed email. “It was 1am and we had parked our cars in an elementary school parking lot. There were about six of us, laughing, having fun. I looked up into the sky to take in the beauty of this clear, starlit night when all of a sudden I noticed an area straight up without stars! ‘What the hell?!’ was my first response! I elbowed my boyfriend and pointed to the sky without saying a word. Immediately he elbowed and pointed upward to the next friend, and so on! We all stood there dumbstruck, looking up, amazed at the sight before us.”

This is a great description of the immediate reaction to such a sighting—no words, just each friend nudging one another and pointing successively on down the line. Lorraine explained that there were no streetlights, and the field of stars was very bright that night. The “colossal craft” had no lights or other form of illumination, so “The only way you could see its triangular shape was how it blotted out the stars!”

“We all stood there, staring upward, mouths agape, bewildered… scared yet amazed…It passed over us at a height that it could nick its bottom on the point of the Empire State Building. And its speed was as slow as a balloon in the Macy’s Day Parade. It passed slowly. Creeping along. Then all of a sudden it shot out from view, then reappeared what seemed like ten miles down further and continued its sloth-like pace.

“We ran to our cars! The next day we learned through the local newspaper that others had witnessed this craft as well! I would say that experience far exceeded any party that night!”

Just to further emphasize her story, Lorraine later emailed me this:

“All of this is the darn truth! I’ll never forget it!!”

Book cover to Linda Zimmerman's Hudson Valley UFOs.

Book cover to Linda Zimmerman’s Hudson Valley UFOs.

This craft exhibited many of the characteristics described by witnesses during the 1980s flap—triangular, the size of a football field, and the ability to go both incredibly slow and impossibly fast. However, whereas most of the other craft witnessed were often described as being lit up like Christmas trees, this one was flying dark.

Around the same time frame of the late 70s and early 80s, a “black disk” was spotted one night in Brentwood, NY, which is on Long Island. A witness reported to MUFON that she went outside to call her cat in for the night when she looked up and saw “a black disk the size of a stop sign at arm’s length” and about the height of a radio tower. It moved very slowly, diagonally over her house and she had time to observe it from both the back and front yards.

Again, there were no lights, and the shape was only able to be determined by the “sky glow” from the neighborhood lights, as the object was silhouetted against the dark sky. There was one other unusual feature the witness described with this craft—“The bottom didn’t appear smooth, it looked like it had sections that were raised, with sharp edges.” Unlike the previous case, however, where the UFO shot off in the blink of an eye, this black craft just quietly floated out of sight.

Yet another different shape of dark object appeared even earlier in the area, a rectangular craft as described in a 1978 NUFORC report from Avon, Connecticut. This case was also different, as what first drew the attention of the witness was a bright light, which apparently shut off as the witness approached.

“I was driving back to where I was staying that night after dropping off a friend. I was driving up a road in Avon, CT, when I saw a bright light up ahead; I thought this was unusual for this time of night [1 am]. I proceeded up the road and when I got to where the light basically was coming from, there was no light present. I looked around in curiosity and discovered an object the size of a house hovering about fifty feet in the air. There was a half moon and visibility was good, this object was very dark and large, there were no lights on and it made no noise whatsoever.

“I parked my car in the middle of the road and left it running with the lights on, hoping someone would come down the road to witness this as well. I stood still in one spot staring at this object for about 5 minutes, fearing what it would be capable of doing. I looked around and saw a house that had its lights on, so I ran over to it and knocked on the door. I waited for a couple of minutes, but nobody answered.

“I ran back to where my car was and the object was still there. I became so scared I jumped in my car and drove off quickly. As I went to the stop sign at the end of the road, I looked up and the object had followed me all the way down the road. I turned to the left and saw the object was still following me, so I floored the gas and never looked back again.”

As if this case isn’t bizarre enough, there was a final twist.

“It took me over a month to tell anyone else, but eventually I told my parents. We ended up moving to an area right where this event occurred, and a neighbor saw the same thing almost one year to the date later. She described the exact same event I witnessed.”

Depiction of triangle UFO at night. (Credit: OpenMinds.tv)

Depiction of triangle UFO at night. (Credit: OpenMinds.tv)

What were the chances that this witness would actually move to the location of her intense encounter, and then find a neighbor who saw the same black, unlit object around the same day the following year?

Another black triangle with no lights was seen by at least three men in 1985. It was around midnight when “Jerry” and his friend, “Matt” were driving from Danbury Hospital toward Brewster, NY on Route 84. The sky was overcast, but not completely dark, due to the sky glow from all the street and building lights. Had it been a clear night, the two friends may not have seen the incredible silent object they witnessed, silhouetted against the clouds.

“It was a large solid, black triangle with no visible sign of propulsion,” Jerry told me. “No exhaust, no propellers. It was low enough that the altitude itself was notable and striking as it appeared to be very low relative to the highway for such a large craft. In terms of speed, I would say somewhere around 80 miles an hour. I am guessing that because we were driving on I-84 and the craft stayed ahead of us during the time we were on the highway, but was not pulling away at great speed. There were no lights that I recall and the craft was a triangle, not the V-shape that I know some others have seen. It would have been travelling at well below stall speed for any conventional aircraft of its size.

“We pulled off the highway at Exit 4 (west bound) and pulled into what I believe was an empty lot where a McDonald’s now exists. There was another motorist who had pulled off for the same reason. He was standing outside his car when we pulled in and we spoke briefly. The three of us; my friend, the other motorist and I, all watched the craft head toward Ridgefield [Connecticut]. The time was likely around midnight, but I don’t know the exact time. It was after 10:00 PM because I called the tower at Danbury Airport the next day to see if they had any idea what it was. They said the tower closed at 10:00 so they had no information at all to offer.”

The most startling case I have had involving a dark craft has to be the one sighted by Jim in Howells, NY, in 1995, if for nothing else, the sheer enormity of the object.

Jim was in his twenties and living at his mother’s house. He went to take the garbage out one night, so he turned on the front porch light. This was no ordinary light, as his mother had installed an extremely bright spotlight that did not aim down, it aimed straight ahead, so the angle of its beam went up into the sky, as well. Without that powerful beam of light, Jim never would have seen what passed overhead.

“It was like something out of Battlestar Galactica! It was an enormous, metallic triangle and I could see a lot of detail.”

The craft did not have any lights on, but as it was only at an altitude of a couple of hundred feet, the spotlight illuminated the underside.

Depiction of triangle UFO seen in Illinois. (Credit: Michael Schratt)

Depiction of triangle UFO seen in Illinois. (Credit: Michael Schratt)

“It wasn’t moving really fast, but it was going along at a good clip. Even so, it took many seconds to pass completely overhead.”

I asked Jim what he would compare the size to: a house, a plane, a football field?

“At least three football fields,” he replied without hesitation.

As he began by making a science fiction spaceship comparison, I mentioned the opening scene of Star Wars where the Imperial Star Destroyer just keeps coming and coming across the screen.

“I never thought of that, but that’s what it was like. It was just enormous.”

“Any sound?” I asked.

“Absolutely silent,” he stated. “Had that spotlight not been on, I don’t think I would have even noticed it.”

I asked what his immediate reaction had been to the sighting, and how it made him feel. In the spirit of a picture being worth a thousand words, rather than trying to describe it, he struck a pose and expression of extreme surprise and amazement. That said it all.

What else is in the skies above us that we don’t notice because it has absolutely no form of illumination? Why are some craft brilliantly lit, clearly wanting to be seen, or at least not caring if they are seen? Can we assume that dark UFOs are rare, or are just the sightings of these craft rare because the conditions have to be just right to see them?

Whatever is going on, these cases present researchers a valuable opportunity to sidestep the numerous excuses for lights in the sky and concentrate on the indisputable facts: for reasons we can only imagine, enormous triangles, disks, and rectangles are in our skies displaying no lights, not wanting to be seen. Based upon the cases with which I have personally dealt, and others I have come across in the MUFON and NUFORC databases, I know I will now be starting a new file labeled “Flying Dark.”

Watch Linda’s presentation on Hudson Valley UFOs here.

 

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Daily UFO Headlines 8/15/2017

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Daily UFO Headlines 8/14/2017

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NASA hiring Planetary Protection Officer and USAF seeks to create Space Corps. Who are the enemies lurking in space?

NASA’s recent job posting for a Planetary Protection Officer and the House approving a plan to create a Space Corps in the U.S. Air Force have made worldwide headlines.  It is not hard to understand why. They are exciting pieces of news that make space nerds like me giddily feeling like our sci-fi fantasies have come true.

Could it be that the time has come for us to defend ourselves from a threat from beyond? Perhaps the recent meeting by the Mutual UFO Network focused on a secret space program was not as farfetched as I thought. While it may be fun to think this is the case, the threats these positions are focused on are not alien invaders, well, not the sci-fi kind.

The USAF already has a Space Command and Space Wing. This graphic details the 50th Space Wing's locations. Click to enlarge. (Credit: USAF)

The USAF already has a Space Command and Space Wing. This graphic details the 50th Space Wing’s locations. Click to enlarge. (Credit: USAF)

As NASA recently pointed out, in a response to a nine-year-old would be “Guardian of the Galaxy,” the Planetary Protection Officer position has actually existed since the 60’s. According to the job posting, this position is “concerned with the avoidance of organic-constituent and biological contamination in human and robotic space exploration.”

Or, as they described to the nine-year-old applicant: “Our Planetary Protection Officer position is really cool and is very important work. It’s about protecting Earth from tiny microbes when we bring back samples from the Moon, asteroids and Mars. It’s also about protecting other planets and moons from our germs as we responsibly explore the Solar System.”

They make it seem kind of boring, but these sorts of protocols would have helped the space colonists in the latest installation of the Alien franchise when (spoiler) they got infected by the weird pollen-like substance that turned some of them into deadly xenomorphs.

Contamination of space colonists in Alien Covenant caused slight discomfort for those infected. (Credit: 20th Century Fox)

Contamination of space colonists in Alien Covenant caused slight discomfort for those infected. (Credit: 20th Century Fox)

Although the knowledge I just imparted might make it seem like I could be a good candidate for the job, watching sci-fi movies and having watched every episode of X-Files several times is not what NASA is looking for. They would prefer someone with an advanced degree in engineering, physical science, or mathematics. I guess I am out.

So is Jack Davis. Davis is a fourth grader who, like me, felt he was more than qualified to do the job. He sent NASA a one paragraph resume/cover letter, and actually got a response. It is even posted on NASA’s website.

Jack wrote:

Dear NASA,

My name is Jack Davis and I would like to apply for the for the planetary protection officer job. I may be 9, but I think I would be fit for the job. One of the reasons is my sister says I am an alien. Also I have seen almost all the space and alien movies that I can see. I have also seen the show ‘Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and hope to see the movie ‘Men in Black.’ I am great at video games. I am young, so I can learn to think like an alien.

Sincerely,

Jack Davis,

Guardian of the Galaxy

Fourth Grade

The kid had me convinced. However, as NASA Director of Planetary Science Division Dr. James L. Green explained, there is a bit more to the job than meets the eye.

Dear Jack,

I hear you are a “Guardian of the Galaxy” and that you’re interested in being a NASA Planetary Protection Officer. That’s great!

Our Planetary Protection Officer position is really cool and is very important work. It’s about protecting Earth from tiny microbes when we bring back samples from the Moon, asteroids and Mars. It’s also about protecting other planets and moons from our germs as we responsibly explore the Solar System.

We are always looking for bright future scientists and engineers to help us, so I hope you will study hard and do well in school. We hope to see you here at NASA one of these days!

Sincerely,

Dr. James L. Green

Director, Planetary Science Division

Dr. Green makes it seem like the Planetary Protection Officer position is a tough gig to land. But there may be hope. Jack and I may have a shot to gallivant around space saving the universe as members of the USAF Space Corps. This sounds like a job more likely to include laser blasters, and the House really did pass a defense spending bill approving their creation.

Young Jack Davis' letter and NASA's Dr, Green response. (Credit: NASA)

Young Jack Davis’ letter and NASA’s Dr, Green response. (Credit: NASA)

There are just two problems that may prevent Jack and I from receiving our standard issue laser blasters. The first is that although the House approved the bill, the Senate is more skeptical about the need for the Space Corps. Many feel it might be premature to create the department.  In fact, according to the New York Times, the White House has said the proposal is “premature,” and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis essentially laughed it off.

It’s true that there is little evidence we are in imminent danger of being invaded by an alien force, but that is not really what the Space Corps is for anyway. The Space Corps’ proposed purpose, as the New York Times puts it, is to “oversee military operations in that emerging, and important, domain of military competition.” Specifically, competition from the Russians and Chinese.

Fourth-grader Jack Davis got a special call Friday, Aug. 4, 2017, from NASA’s Planetary Research Director, Jonathan Rall, congratulating Jack on his interest in serving as the agency's planetary protection officer. (Credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani)

Fourth-grader Jack Davis got a special call Friday, Aug. 4, 2017, from NASA’s Planetary Research Director, Jonathan Rall, congratulating Jack on his interest in serving as the agency’s planetary protection officer. (Credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani)

The sorts of weapons currently residing in space are satellite signal jammers.

“What hasn’t happened is the kinetic part: blowing up satellites,” Brian Weeden, director of program planning for Secure World Foundation, an organization that studies the international use of space, told the New York Times.

So we are not in a time where we need the Guardians of the Galaxy… yet. This dashes my hopes of becoming a space cadet, but lucky for Jack, the future is coming very quickly. It would be wise for him to take Dr. Green’s advice, because our activity in space is sure to become even more exciting and sci-fi-like in the near future.

 

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Florida couple claim to witness speedy UFO zig-zagging through the night sky


A couple in Ormond by the Sea, Florida reports that they saw a bright object flying “zig-zaggy” through the sky at a high rate of speed. The sighting took place last night as they were watching the stars from their backyard. The husband says he was a military brat and served 14 years in the U.S. Army, but he says he has never seen anything like it.

Ormond by the Sea in relation to Orland and Tampa. Ormond by the Sea is at the location of the red marker. (Credit: Google Maps)

Ormond by the Sea in relation to Orland and Tampa. Ormond by the Sea is at the location of the red marker. (Credit: Google Maps)

The witnesses posted their account of the UFO sighting today in the reporting database of the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON), along with a drawing demonstrating the path the object flew.

Ormond by the Sea skyline as seen from the top of the Granada Bridge in Ormond Beach, Florida. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Gamweb)

Ormond by the Sea skyline as seen from the top of the Granada Bridge in Ormond Beach, Florida. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Gamweb)

Here is the witness statement, verbatim:

My wife and I were outside, in the backyard, looking at the stars, because the sky was unusually clear. We had been observing the stars and constellations for approx. five minutes when the object appeared, suddenly, out of the west, headed east out over the ocean there is this extremely fast, at extremely high altitude, brightly (white) lit object that transits the sky in less than ten seconds… stops… remained motionless for a few seconds, then flew southwest back inland making erratic movements, kind of jittery and zig-zaggy, then abruptly stopped again and remained motionless. The speed was incredible.The object then flew south/southwest until it was lost in the illumination (glow) of the city lights of Daytona Beach. 

I was an Air Force brat, and a veteran of 14 yrs military service in the US Army, and have seen all types of high performance military aircraft flying… this was not a plane or satellite. 

Never seen anything remotely this fast. It made erratic changes in direction, and complete stops with no perceptible slowing. 

I’m actually a very rational person. A highly trained and experienced observer. I’ve seen the ISS, space shuttle, fighters fueling from tankers, high performance aircraft, and numerous satellites over the years… never anything like this. At first we were excited, as we thought it was a satellite, then our feelings turned to awe as we watched it perform incredible maneuvers, radically changing direct, coming to abrupt stops, all from very high rates of speed. 

Bright single points of light moving erratically in the night sky are often reported. Satellites can often be seen at night, especially in the hours just after sunset. However, satellites are not very fast, and just fly in a straight line. What this couple saw is anyone’s guess. Let us know in the comments below if you think you know what they might have seen.

Witness drawing of erratic movement of UFO. (Credit: MUFON)

Witness drawing of erratic movement of UFO. (Credit: MUFON)

The vast majority of UFO sightings turn out to be mundane objects, but once in awhile there are sightings that are much more difficult to explain. MUFON conducts investigations on sightings submitted to their website, and if they share their conclusions, we will let you all know. Meanwhile, others will likely chime in and we will try to keep you up to date with any discoveries. Please feel free to share your thoughts on the object in the comments below.

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