Open Minds UFO Radio: Journalist Leslie Kean recently posted an article in The Huffington Post about a two year investigation by the Chilean government’s official UFO investigation organization into a video captured by the Chilean Navy showing an object they cannot identify. The object was caught on an infrared camera, and according to the director of the UFO organization, “We do not know what it was, but we do know what it was not.”
The video was investigated by CEFAA, an organization in Chile’s equivalent of the FAA, which also falls under the jurisdiction of the Chilean Air Force. CEFAA has full cooperation with other branched of the Chilean government and also reaches out to other UFO research organization throughout the world.
In this interview, we discuss the case with Leslie and CEFAA Director of International Affairs Jose Lay.
When Mauricio Macri became the new President of Argentina, his administration decided to shut down several pet projects of his predecessor, Christina Fernandez de Kirchner. One particular division is an Argentinian UFO agency.
By www.latinpost.com 2-18-16
In May 2011, Fernandez de Kirchner started the Commission for the Study of Aerospace Phenomena or CEFAE, which hired civilian and military experts. The new agency had the objective of getting more details about several UFO sightings in Argentina.
However, the agency’s almost five-year existence only came up with one report and 10 investigated UFO sightings. The one and only study consisted of 12 pages and concluded that nine out of 10 sightings actually involved a bird, soccer ball, helicopter, red lights of an antenna, a star, airplane, Jupiter, the moon and a combination of a star, satellite and NASA’s International Space Station. The 10th case was not resolved because the witness failed to provide a photo or video. However, the study stated that it may be a red laser being shown on a wall.
The CEFAE was also linked to the San Martin National University (UNSM), which public officials allegedly used for personal gain. During Kirchner’s time, the school reportedly came up with a degree in aerospace engineering. It was believed, however, that the $15 million in funding the division was actually used to pay party activists and cronies.
Kirchner’s administration was ridden with allegations of corruption. The Macri administration is currently taking down various initiatives set up by its predecessor, which may have been used for purposes other than for the public. […]
LIMA, Peru — Even at the best of times, Argentina’s former president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner was controversial.
Accused of populism, corruption, mismanaging the economy and un-statesmanlike mood swings, she also, apparently, had an interest in extraterrestrial life.
Simeon Tegel www.globalpost.com 2-15-16
In fact, in May 2011, she launched a new agency within Argentina’s air force specifically to research reports of UFOs on national territory.
Called the Commission for the Study of Aero-spatial Phenomena, or CEFAE in Spanish, it included both military and civilian experts, and aimed to get to the bottom of a spate of sightings across the South American nation.
Amid great fanfare, Brigadier Ernesto Omar Paris, of the Argentine Air Force, said at the time: “This commission will carry out a scientific study of aero-spatial phenomena. With this achievement, we have reached an important goal for our institution.”
Now that Fernandez de Kirchner’s leftist administration has made way for new president Mauricio Macri’s center right government, many of her pet projects are being wound down, and some are even being investigated to see how they spent the public funds they were assigned. That includes CEFAE [….]
CEFAA, Chile’s federal UFO study project, recently brought its resources to bear on a September 2012 incident over Santiago. The cell phone videos were poor quality and the object(s) left no radar clues. But government researchers, operating under the auspices of Chile’s equivalent of America’s FAA, evidently felt compelled to check this one out because of its audacity, unfolding as it did near that nation’s Air Force War Academy. Not to mention the animation in the witnesses’ voices recorded during the event.
Author Leslie Kean published a summary of CEFAA’s report last week at Huffington Post. Three witnesses, two civilians and a career air force sergeant, saw five nighttime lights make an approach the Academy from the mountains. Their original horizontal formation split into a triangular array, reformed as a circle, and then quickly departed. All reported dramatic color shifts during the fly-by, but the sergeant’s story was the most detailed. He described seeing “an oval shape, like a submarine; the upper part had windows with lights coming out … with a dome or something like it.” But what elevated this relatively unremarkable anecdotal encounter from multitudes of others was the time and effort an interdisciplinary lineup of Chilean officials invested in trying to figure it out.
Weather conditions were eliminated from the suspect list, as were conventional aircraft and interference from ground-based light sources. Consequently, CEFAA declared the event an “anomalous luminous phenomenon,” which is about as neutral a phrase as could be applied to an incident whose characteristics are consistent with a display of intelligence/high technology. Anomalous luminous phenomenon is a fancy way of saying “We don’t know,” which is a sane and welcome contrast to Uncle Sam’s fidgety aversions, denials and inventions when confronted with The Great Taboo. Better yet, there were evidently no repercussions for the eyewitnesses, no job insecurities, no (apparent) negative press, no institutional credibility collapse for failing to be omniscient. But this is the sort of climate CEFAA has been nurturing since its inception in 1997.
Five years ago, in fact, two of CEFAA’s top operatives — Ricardo Bermudez Sanhueza and Rodrigo Bravo — called for coordinated global dissemination of UFO data, most likely through United Nations channels. While the UN and its ferocious competing interests often rate raspberries for staging so much futile theater, it’s hard to imagine how any country could exploit The Great Taboo for nationalistic rhetoric. (Well, OK, it’s not that hard. Kim Jong-un: “Bandits breaking the laws of physics will encounter a resolute people’s wall of fire at the borders of our sacred space”.) Still, for broader approaches to breaking the UFO gridlock, it’s worth taking a look at some multinational ideas published by the American nonprofit National Aviation Reporting Center on Anomalous Phenomena in 2010. Even more specifically, a retired Belgian air force general noted that a logical UN channel — the International Civil Aviation Organization — is already in place. Or, failing that, try the International Air Transport Association based in Montreal.
The key to making it work, obviously, will be the erosion of American resistance, mired in an endless current of updates on rapidly multiplying exoplanets and exposure to alternative media coverage — from the insipid to the provocative — on The Great Taboo. The stigma is losing its grip; like attitudes on gay marriage, weed, and race, everything changes. Suppressing the reality of an experience runs counter to human nature. Most U.S. pilots, for instance, are loathe to go public with their encounters, yet scores have filed reports with groups like NARCAP and the National UFO Reporting Center in exchange for anonymity. Once upon a time, a guy like Andrew Danziger might’ve taken his 1989 UFO sighting to the grave. But in April, the pilot who flew candidate Obama on the 2008 campaign trail decided to spill the beans. And a full month later, Fox News(!) actually followed up(!) with a live interview and played it straight(!).
Things are happening, in small but significant ways. Countries like Chile remind us that things do not fall apart when we confront the holes in our knowledge, however impossible or irrational that evidence may appear.
Alejandro Rojas with the news, and journalist & author Leslie Kean and Chilean International Affairs Director of CEFAA (on UFOs) Jose Lay joins us to speak about a recent story published of a Chilean encounter taken seriously. Support the show to hear more in hour two.
On May 21st I posted the story “Exclusive: New Video of Unexplained Aerial Phenomenon From Chile.” It described a sighting of three consecutive formations made by five spinning lights: a straight line, a triangle, and a circle. Three reliable witnesses witnessed the spectacle at an Air Force Academy; two captured the triangular formation on their cell phones. The lights appeared so close that the witnesses thought whatever it was might land. A sergeant with more than 20 years experience in the Air Force also described seeing a submarine shaped “ship” with lighted windows.
The case was thoroughly investigated by the official UFO agency in Chile (CEFAA), along with its volunteer committee of scientists, Air Force technicians, police, psychologists and other specialists. They ruled out every conceivable explanation.
Since the “submarine UFO” seen by the sergeant was not observed by the other two witnesses, the committee from Chile formally concluded that the case involved an “anomalous light phenomenon” and left it at that. Therefore, in my blog post yesterday, I felt it was my responsibility to write conservatively and honor this conclusion. . . .
UFO videos were released this week from the Chilean government. The videos were captured at the Academia de Guerra Aérea (AGA), or Air Force War Academy, in Santiago, Chile in 2012. After years of careful analysis, a scientific board has declared the UFO event an “anomalous luminous phenomenon” of unknown origin.
The investigation of the UFO incident was conducted by the Committee of Studies of Anomalous Aerial Phenomenon (CEFAA), the Chilean government’s official organization for the study of unknown aerial phenomena. CEFAA is a committee within the department of civil aeronautics (DGAC), Chile’s equivalent to the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. However, they work in cooperation with the Chilean military and other governmental agencies.
This case is not to be confused with a recent story circulating among many major media outlets that falsely reported CEFAA had declared a separate UFO incident to be “not made by man.” Lee Speigel of The Huffington Post wrote an article clarifying the facts behind that case.
That is why, as part of her blog, CEFAA allowed Leslie to post video from the 2012 UFO case for the first time.
The incident took place at about 7:45 pm on September 3, 2012. The witnesses were a paramedic, an emergency medical technician (EMT), and a sergeant. The sergeant was responsible for the security of the AGA, and was assisting the other two in the refueling of their ambulance, when all of them spotted a group of five lights above the nearby Andes mountains.
The area of the sighting as seen in the daylight. (Credit: CEFAA)
The lights were in a horizontal line moving towards the ASA. Kean writes that the sergeant, a 27-year Air Force veteran, first thought the lights might be helicopters. However, they made no sound. He soon realized they were something much more mysterious.
The sergeant then ran towards the main gate and shouted for the guard on duty. Meanwhile, the paramedic and the EMT took out their phones and began shooting video.
As the men watched the lights, they transformed from a straight line to a triangle, then a circle. Soon after, the lights moved back over the mountains and out of view. The entire event only took a few minutes, and the cell phone cameras were recording the entire event.
Illustration of the lights in relation to the mountains and trees. (Credit: CEFAA)
Illustration of the lights in relation to the mountains and trees. (Credit: CEFAA)
Illustration of the lights in relation to the mountains and trees. (Credit: CEFAA)
Not much can be seen in the videos. They are posted on CEFAA’s website. However, the version below was provided to Kean to post on YouTube. It contains the best part of the two videos and has been somewhat enhanced.
Although the lights are difficult to make out, the excitement of the witnesses can be heard. Kean posted in her article a translation of what the EMT was saying as he filmed:
They’re UFOs! Damn I can’t capture them in my camera! Look at the formation they have now! I am seeing a formation of five luminous objects, that my cell phone doesn’t seem to catch. But if you were here you would see them perfectly!
Oh my God, look! They are coming down! I can’t see anything in my camera. Over here look! Before they looked super big. Now they are getting dimmer. Wow, this is amazing!
In a testament to the excitement of the moment, a retired Air Force general, who just happened to have stopped by the base within minutes of the sighting, reported his encounter with the excited sergeant. He said the excited sergeant approached him and asked: “‘Did you see the lights, General?’ ‘We had them right here on top of the Academy…five UFO’s, red in color…here, right on top of us… General, I thought one of them was going to land here!’”
The next morning, General Ricardo Bermúdez, director of CEFAA, received a phone call from the director of the AGA. The AGA director said he had arrived at the base about fifteen minutes after the incident. He had rushed to the base in response to an urgent phone call. He could also attest to the genuine excitement of the sergeant.
Leslie Kean being interviewed by Chilean media during a visit in 2012. General Bermúdez stands to her right. (Credit: DGAC)
“The sergeant acted like someone who’s seen something very strange,” he told Bermúdez. “He also said he hadn’t believed in those things [UFOs] until after what had just happened.”
Besides the five lights witnessed by all three men, the sergeant said he had witnessed an additional object. The sergeant told Bermúdez, “I saw an oval shape, like a submarine. The upper part had windows with lights coming out and was shaped like a submarine, with a dome or something like it.”
Illustration of the submarine-like object seen by the sergeant. (Credit: CEFAA)
The videos were analyzed by the Chilean criminal police department, which Kean describes as the equivalent of our FBI. In the following images, they enhanced still frames from the video so the lights could be seen.
Image enhancements. (Credit: CEFAA)
Image enhancements. (Credit: CEFAA)
Kean writes, ” The phenomenon clearly demonstrates intelligence.”
She points out that when the lights are in the triangular formation, it can be seen in the enhanced images that two of the three points of lights are actually two lights close together, making it appear there are three points of light instead of five.
Close-up of the triangular formation showing it is made of 5 lights, not 3. (Credit: CEFAA)
CEFAA conducted a thorough investigation of the incident, which included psychologists, meteorologists, radar experts, and other scientists. In the end, Kean writes, “The CEFAA Scientific Committee concluded by consensus that this was an ‘anomalous luminous phenomenon’ of unknown origin.”
Although CEFAA found this object to be of unknown origin, they avoid using the term UFO. Often it is assumed a UFO is something of extraterrestrial origin, even though the U in UFO stands for Unknown.
In an interview with Speigel of The Huffington Post, last week, CEFAA International Affairs Director Jose Lay clarified CEFAA’s official position on UFOs.
“We believe the phenomenon exists, and we base this asseveration on the many reports made by our pilots — civilian and military — and by our ground traffic and radar controllers,” Lay told The Huffington Post. “We do not know its origin or its nature. That is why we continue investigating and hope many other countries will join us in this endeavor.”
Xavier Passot of GEIPAN (left) and Jose Lay of CEFAA at a conference in North Carolina. (Credit: Alejandro Rojas)
CEFAA is one of several official government sanctioned UFO investigation organizations in South America, and actively seeks to work in cooperation with similar agencies in other countries.
Exclusive: New Video of Unexplained Aerial Phenomenon From Chile
By Leslie Kean The Huffington Post 5-21-15
The CEFAA, a government agency investigating unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) within the department of civil aeronautics (DGAC) in Chile, has released a summary of its meticulous investigation into the relatively recent “AGA case.” . . .
. . . Here is what happened: At about 7:45 pm on September 3, 2012, a paramedic and an emergency medical technician (EMT) stopped to fill up an ambulance from the Air Force Hospital at the fuel pump on the Academy grounds. A sergeant, responsible for overseeing the security of the facility, was assisting with the refueling.
Suddenly, they observed five lights coming over the Andes mountains from the Northeast, creating a horizontal formation and moving towards the Academy. At first, they thought this must be helicopters rehearsing for an annual military parade to take place later that month. However, as the lights drew nearer, the sergeant, who had spent 27 years in the Air Force, realized they were not helicopters. They made no sound and were clearly something highly unusual. . . .
Chilean Air Force General (Ret.) Ricardo Bermúdez is the Director of the Committee of Studies of Anomalous Aerial Phenomenon (CEFAA), the Chilean government’s official organization for the study of unknown aerial phenomena. General Bermúdez has also been the Director of the Technical School of Aeronautics, the School of Engineers, and the sub-Director of Chile’s Air Force Academy. At CEFAA, he leads a group of scientists at the doctorate level, who form the committee along with aviation experts from the General Directorate of Civil Aeronautics. General Bermúdez is a former fighter pilot, served as an air attaché in London, and commanded the Third Air Brigade in southern Chile.
Bon chance and buena suerte to researchers in France and Chile as they embark upon a joint exploration of The Great Taboo. After agreeing to collaborate in 2013, Chile’s government-sponsored Committee for the Study of Anomalous Aerial Phenomena (CEFAA) and a French NGO, the SIGMA2 Technical Commission, announced their “first working meeting” in Paris on Oct. 28-29. The following day, CEFAA chief Ricardo Bermudez and GEIPAN’s Xavier Passot, head of the official French research group, convened to offer their governments’ respective stamps of approval.
First, a few definitions. We know about CEFAA, they’ve been around since 1997 by order of Chile’s civil aviation department. And we know about GEIPAN, the French agency that, as a branch of its space program, has been collecting UFO data under various acronyms and incarnations since 1977. GEIPAN assigns an A through D rating system to its UFO reports, with D being the truly puzzling cases without explanation. Some 20 percent of its 2,200 cases on file fall into the D file.
This part is news to De Void: SIGMA2 is a branch of 3AF, a private-sector technical society, the rough equivalent of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics here in the States. According to SIGMA2 Commission President Luc Dini, “We work with GEIPAN to look at ‘D’ cases … where GEIPAN has no special expertise to look further for explanation and causes. Since our role is not official, without direct involvement into the field investigation, we are focused on the analysis of physics and measurements … after the preliminary investigation.”
According to Dini, Chile has concluded UFOs, or UAP, or PAN in the preferred local parlace, pose a “potential aviation risk,” but CEFAA has no analytical component like SIGMA2. And that’s significant because, says Dini, CEFAA “wants to go beyond the investigation and attempt to scientifically explain the causes” of the phenomenon. If only they were a bit more ambitious … At any rate, Dini says SIGMA2 is not only eager to move forward, but that this “axis of cooperation” has “confirmed its intention to develop a network of scientific and technical expertise, in France, in Europe and outside Europe, to conduct physical case studies and discuss technical analysis.”
Clearly, one of those partners will be American, the nonprofit National Aviation Reporting Center on Anomalous Phenomena. For 15 years, NARCAP has been assessing The Great Taboo’s potential for catastrophic air corridor encounters, despite being underfunded and underpublicized. Imagine what NARCAP could do with even a modest federal grant of, ohh, say, $307,524. That’s how much the National Science Foundation and the Office of Naval Research are spending on their so-called “Sea Monkey study,” which concludes in February. The goal is to see if brine shrimp can be trained to swim with enough synchronization to affect a healthier circulation of ocean currents.
Anyhow, life goes on without Uncle Sam, and as Jose Lay confirms in an email to De Void, a lot of credit for what’s happening now goes to the foundation laid by the “Symposium on Official & Scientific Investigations of UAP (UFOs)” in North Carolina last year. An invited speaker and CEFAA official, Lay met with GEIPAN’s Passot during the two-day event, and “we exchanged information and agreed in principle to start formal cooperation between our entities.” Then they actually followed up on it. And the rest is history.
“I know from personal experience that the relationship of other governments to this issue is important to members of the U.S. government in terms of considering a new official involvement with this issue,” states author Leslie Kean, who played a key role in organizing the conference in Greensboro. “The fact that the two leading agencies in the world – one from Europe and the other from South America – are joining forces is extremely significant, and hopefully this step forward will help encourage our government to take the subject seriously and to join in the growing international effort.
“The U.S. role is important, because once the U.S. is on board – even by simply appointing one staffer to evaluate the validity of U.S. involvement – many other countries will come on board. Even a crack in this now shut door would be enough to radically change the picture. If we can simply assign a government appointee to evaluate the question — are UFOs worthy of investigation? — then we have made a giant step forward.”
Lay cited Kean and conference financier Kent Senter, who dropped a load on the symposium despite his struggle with cancer, for creating such a rational and productive climate. So yeah, some things do work out. And who knows, maybe they all will, eventually, if you’ve got the patience of a saint.