For years, Graham Birdsall’s UFO Magazine held conferences at Leeds Metropolitan University, bringing some of the top researchers in the field from around the world. After Graham died in 2003, Russel Callaghan, Michael Buckley and Philip Mantle brought out UFO DATA Magazine and held annual conferences, with the 2005 and 2006 events being held at the Leeds Rhinos rugby club. Since then, no major UFO conference has had a stage in West Yorkshire’s largest city.


Until now.

 David Griffin and Anthony Beckett, with the help of Andrew Johnson, have organized the 1st Annual Leeds Exopolitics Expo. Exopolitics is a relatively new field in ufology and one that is growing steadily. Rather than simply studying UFO reports and wondering about what might be the cause of them, exopolitics attempts to view the subject from a political and social standpoint: What are the global implications for open extra-terrestrial contact?

 With five speakers, three from the UK and two from the United States, it was going to be a packed programme for a one-day event.

My brother and I arrived just before the doors opened at 9am and, after a quick coffee, we took our seats in the lecture hall. I was somewhat surprised that the room was not packed, with only about a hundred people in attendance, but there was a good buzz to the event and at 9:30am, David Griffin welcomed us to the conference.

He gave an overview to the exopolitics movement, both here and abroad, announcing that there was going to be a big exopolitics conference in Barcelona in July. Details of this event can be found at http://www.exopoliticseurope.com/

He also spoke briefly about the Disclosure Project and SETI, asking how much evidence is enough and which evidence is acceptable or the most likely to be accepted by the scientific community. Are the so-called implants removed by researchers such as Dr Roger Leir not acceptable as good evidence? What about the good, well-documented cases of UFOs interfering with the world’s military forces, such as the famous Malmstrom Incident, when nuclear missiles were rendered inactive by UFOs in 1967? Or the Rendlesham Forest Incident of 1980?

What about trace evidence? Unexplained marks left on the ground, radar traces or even Betty Hill’s dress, which had some strange, biological residue found on it after her abduction experience.

What about the accounts of abductees, contactees or experiencers, such as Barney and Betty Hill’s encounter in 1961? Should they all be dismissed?

What about government documents, often released via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) that frequently tell us that UFOs are a real phenomenon? Is the famous SOM1-01 document genuine or fake? What about the famous Brookings Report that set the framework for what to do (or not to do) in the event of extraterrestrial contact?

Can researchers into ‘Free Energy’ push forward our understanding of how extraterrestrial craft may operate? David spoke of the work of John Searl, an English engineer who has developed the Levity Disc and the Searl Effect Generator (see his website for more details at http://www.searlsolution.com)

What about government witnesses and whistleblowers? Many of these have come forward through the Disclosure Project. Why are they still not taken seriously by the world-at-large?

Does the worldwide UFO cover-up prove that something is going on? Why cover-up something that ‘does not exist’?

1947 saw the dawn of the modern age of ufology. It had Kenneth Arnold’s sighting, the Roswell Incident and the Maury Island Incident. It saw the birth of the CIA and the implementation of the US National Security Act. What was so special about that year?

David called for activists to push for UFO disclosure and to spread information about the subject as much as possible. He reminded us of the plight of Gary McKinnon, who still faces extradition to the United States and a life-term in prison for allegedly causing damage to the US military computer network, an accusation he strenuously denies. Gary says he was looking for evidence of UFOs and free energy research.

David closed by mentioning the weaponisation of space, something that Wernher von Braun warned about many years ago. Is this technology used to police the Earth or to defend us from external attack?

On this sobering note, David introduced the first speaker, Andrew Johnson.

Andrew’s topic was Wilbert Brockhouse Smith, a name that might not be familiar. Smith was an engineer employed by the Canadian government for many years, working for the Department of Transport (DoT) in a research capacity from 1939 until his death in 1962. Smith’s contemporaries included the likes of Kenneth Arnold, Donald Keyhoe, Betty and Barney Hill, George Adamski and Frank Edwards.

Born in 1910, Smith was only 52 years old when bowel cancer took him in 1962. By that time he held 37 patents. During his time at the DoT, he mainly researched the Earth’s ionosphere, but his real calling was investigating UFOs.

A top secret memo, written by Smith and dating from 1952 was found by Nick Balaskas in the archives of the University of Ottowa. It stated that ‘The matter [referring to UFOs] is the most highly classified subject in the United States Government, rating higher than even the H-bomb’ and that ‘Flying saucers exist’.

A US Defense Department physicist, Robert Sarbacher, met with Smith in 1950 and gave him the details of how highly UFOs are classified by the United States. Sarbacher himself confirmed the meeting during an interview with Stanton Friedman in 1983.

Smith held many files concerning UFOs and he left instructions that they were to be hidden in the event of his death. There were several break-ins at his home after his death, but if ‘they’ were after his files, they were not found. The files eventually passed to Arthur Bray, who held them for twenty years.

In 1952, Smith received funding to begin Project Magnet. Officially, this endeavour was to research the Earth’s magnetic fields, but Smith’s real ambition was to use their equipment to find UFOs. A station was set up in Shirley’s Bay, some 20 miles from Ottowa and the project ran until 1954.

After years of looking at straight lines on their recording equipment, suddenly, on August 8th, 1954, they got a hit, a definite gravimetric variation. Two days later, the project was closed down. Although Magnet received no more funding from the Canadian government, Smith was allowed to use the Shirley’s Bay facilities on his own time and he did so until his death in 1962.

Project Magnet was finally declassified in 1979 and its files tell us that there was a 91% probability that UFOs were real objects and that there was a 60% chance that they were extraterrestrial in origin.

Andrew told us that in the 1950s and until just after Smith’s death, the Canadian government spoke positively about Project Magnet, but later, for some reason, they began denying even its existence.

Wilbert Smith was very open about his interest in UFOs and met or corresponded with many eyewitnesses and contactees. One of these was Frances Swan.

Mrs Swan was a contactee who lived only a short distance from Barney and Betty Hill, in Eliot, Maine. Frances was ‘involved’ with the US government about ‘satellites’ that had appeared 90,000 feet above Washington DC in 1953/54. She claimed they were alien spacecraft and that she was in contact with their leader, Affa, and had been for several years. This was three years before the Soviets launched Sputnik I in 1957. At one point, the FBI investigated Mrs Swan and a document relating to this can be found at http://www.presidentialufo.com/swanfbi.htm

In 1959, Smith was conducting a gravity control experiment in his lab, when he received a telephone call from a blind telex operator in Ottowa. The operator said that he had a message from Affa, stating that the experiment needed to be shielded. Smith built a brick wall around his experiment and on the next run, it promptly blew up.

Smith also had contact with another extraterrestrial, through an anonymous intermediary, names Tyla. Tyla described himself as a ‘garbage collector’. He was responsible for ‘cleaning up’ after nuclear tests and claimed that UFOs often went in after such blasts to clean up the area. Smith stated in 1958: “He gathers up this material, does something to it on board the craft, what we don't know, but it renders it reasonably inert. And then once a year or thereabouts (it takes about a year to process the material), he dumps it in some rather secluded spot. In, I think about 1947, the November or December issue of Time magazine had a picture of Tyla's craft dumping this material out over the American desert.”

One of the aims of Project Magnet was to find out if energy could be extracted from the Earth’s magnetic field. This would be a form of free energy, as the Earth’s magnetic field is constantly being renewed from within. Smith developed a ‘magnetic sink’, which could collect energy from the magnetic field. He claimed the ‘the Boys Topside’ (the aliens) had given his group the information necessary to construct this hardware. He also developed the ‘binding meter’, which was designed to measure the binding force of materials, the ‘caduceus coil’, which could absorb specific energies at certain frequencies with no leakage whatsoever. Smith described it thus: “The info, which we got from the boys topside was that we were making tenser energy, which is a sixth-dimensional radio wave, and is the type of energy they use extensively for radio communications, transmission of power and for pushing and pulling. In fact they use it for just about everything that we could think of. We were not able to control this energy; we could just make it. We are hoping that later on we will be able to learn how to do it, but at the present time we are not just smart enough.”

Smith was certain that gravity could be manipulated by adjusting magnetic fields and he and his team experimented with this many times.

Wilbert Smith also claimed to have handled pieces of UFO hardware many times, recovered either from crashes or military encounters. His son, Jim, also says he has held at least one piece of UFO material.

Smith, according to his son, also claimed to have personally viewed alien bodies, being personally invited by the US military. The descriptions he gave are reminiscent of what we call the Greys. He says that he only saw them for a matter of minutes.

Smith felt that it was pointless debating the reality of the UFO phenomenon. He knew that UFOs were real. What interested him was the meaning of the UFO enigma.

Towards the end of his life, Smith felt that the key to understanding UFOs lie in the realm of metaphysics and he began research towards this. Unfortunately, he was unable to finish it before his death in 1962.

Andrew then played an audio clip of Smith’s 1958 address in Ottowa. In this, he affirms his claims that he has researched the UFO subject, handled UFO materials and had contact with ETs. He defended UFO eyewitnesses, saying they should be believed. He referred to the crash, in 1948, of Captain Thomas Mantell, whom many believe was ‘shot down’ by a UFO. Smith believes that this was not the case and that Mantell’s plane was inadvertently affected by the magnetic fields around the UFO. He did not believe that Mantell died because of hostile action.

To close, Andrew told us that Smith believed that the Earth had been colonised many times by extraterrestrials and that we were very much related to them.

Andrew Johnson’s lecture was very interesting and he made great use of his PowerPoint skills. Wilbert Smith is one of those less well-known figures in ufology that deserves more attention, particularly for his work for the Canadian government. His website can be found at http://www.checktheevidence.com

After a short break, it was time for Nick Pope to take the stand.

Nick’s lecture was about UFO case files that have come to light due to the UK’s Freedom of Information Act, particularly the Milton Torres Incident, which he would get to at the end.

In December, 2007, the Ministry of defence (MoD) announced that it was going to release all of its UFO files to the public. The story was broken by the Daily Telegraph and caused widespread interest.

Nick believed that the MoD’s decision came about because France had just opened its UFO files via its space agency, CNES, which dealt with UFO reports in that country. When that release happened, the CNES website promptly buckled under the strain of millions of hits and crashed.

The MoD, Nick said, believed that a similar release in the UK would be a good showcase for how the Ministry was committed to the FOIA. The MoD sent all of its UFO files to the National Archive (NA) in London and the press coverage for the first batch of released files was good for the NA, Nick felt, but not for the MoD.

Nick explained how the FOIA worked: When it was brought in, by far the highest number of FOIA requests were about UFOs, far more than the MoD expected. All government departments were given mandatory training about how to deal with FOIA requests.

The law concerning FOI is somewhat vague and MoD lawyers sometimes struggle with it. What data should be left open, what should be redacted, that sort of stuff. An FOIA request must be dealt with within 20 working days, but there are ways to get around this and sometimes requests are in the system for months without a satisfactory conclusion i.e. the relevant data being issued. Because of this the Ministry received many complaints.

A decision was made to ‘dump’ all of the UFO files at the NA after they were declassified. This, they felt, would alleviate the pressure at their end, since they could use a standard form directing the inquirer to the Archives. Declassifying the UFO files was harder than they expected, though, due to the vast number of them on record since the 1950s. Apart from over 12,000 sighting reports, there were policy files, correspondences, Parliamentary files and media files to be looked at before they could be sent to the NA. All of these had to be closely scrutinised so any personal information could be redacted in accordance with the Data Protection Act.

On May 14th, 2008, the first batch was released via the NA. Nick was involved in the periphery of this first release, in an advisory role. It was a media sensation in the UK and abroad. A dedicated website was set up for the release and, so it did not suffer the same fate as the French UFO release, backup systems were brought in. Within two weeks, the site had over two million hits.

The public was somewhat disappointed by the data in this first batch and it was mooted that only the most mundane cases were prepared for this inaugural event. Most of the files were just initial reports with no real details apart from a title (which sometimes summarised the event and sometimes didn’t) and a date. Most were misidentifications of one form or another.

There were some interesting titbits in there, though, such as a multiple witness sighting from Waterloo Bridge in London and a sighting by two women in North London, which was corroborated by the police. There was also one from a group of people who ran out of a pub and phoned in a report of flashing lights in the sky, only to state that it was near Gatwick!

Another report came via military radar when a UFO was tracked doing 12 nautical miles in ten seconds. Specialists examined the equipment and readings and said it was ‘the real deal’.

Before the FOIA came into effect, officers would often fob off ‘nutter reports’ to their subordinates and, more often than not, disparaging remarks would be entered into the files. Some of these are still there to see today and it offers a glimpse of how the Ministry handled UFO reports i.e. not well.

The May 2008 release resulted in a rise of reported UFO sightings due to the large-scale media coverage.

On June 7th of that year, soldiers at their barracks in Shropshire caught on camera several orange UFOs. Rather than report this to their superiors, the soldier in question sent off his mobile phone clip to The Sun newspaper. It promptly made front page news and the soldier was ‘told off’ by his superior officers.

On the same night, there was an incident near Cardiff, South Wales, when a police helicopter was said to have almost collided with a UFO. South Wales Police denied the incident, which was widely reported in the press, but a few months later, a Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) air-miss report confirmed that the incident had actually happened. Shortly afterwards, there was a second UFO-helicopter near miss and Nick believes that there is a genuine flight safety risk attached to the UFO phenomenon.

To emphasise this, Nick used the Manchester Airport UFO Incident of January 1995, where an unknown object passed very close to a Boeing 737 and caused the first officer to duck as it went by, and the 1991 Alitalia Incident, when a passenger jet for the Italian airline almost collided with a ‘missile-like’ object while on approach to Heathrow Airport.

How are such reports to be investigated and by whom? The MoD? The CAA? Nick said that it is sometimes unclear who should be looking into these near-miss cases.

The Milton Torres case was released in the second batch of UFO files from the NA. In 1957, Torres flew USAF Sabre jets based at RAF Manston in Kent. On May 20th, 1957, Torres’ squadron was scrambled and ordered to intercept a UFO that had been detected on radar ‘orbiting Ipswich’. Torres was in the lead aircraft and he quickly picked up the object on his airborne radar. He said that it was a return from something the size of an aircraft carrier. This huge object was virtually hovering, or at least moving very, very slowly.

The UFO was never seen visually and only detected on radar. Torres was then totally surprised to receive an order to shoot down the object. He asked for confirmation and received it. As he armed the 24 rockets his Sabre carried, the UFO began to accelerate away. As he prepared to fire, it shot off at ‘Mach 10’.

Could it have been a top secret aircraft? Nick thinks not. While secret military technology is often decades in advance of what we see in public, Nick cannot accept that in 1957, we had aircraft the size of aircraft carriers that could hover and then zip away at high speed.

On returning to base, Torres was debriefed and told by a man in civilian clothing not to talk about the incident. It was classified Top Secret. He was threatened that if he did speak out, he would lose his wings.

In the 1980s, Torres wrote an account of the incident and lodged it with his lawyer. He also sent a copy to the MoD with a letter saying that he wanted to know what happened that day in 1957.

When the NA release happened in 2008, he felt free to speak publicly and spoke at the National Press Club in 2009. He wept because of the secret he had kept for over fifty years. He was heartbroken that he couldn’t tell his father about it before his death.

Researchers are still trying to find Torres’ wingman and also the ‘civilian’ who threatened the pilots to secrecy. Another question to be answered is: Who ordered Torres to fire?

Nick explained that there have been several cases involving shoot-down orders of UFOs, including the famous 1976 Tehran Incident and the 1980 Peru Encounter.

A third batch of UFO files has now been released. Nick closed by saying that he doesn’t believe that the MoD has some ‘smoking gun’ evidence, such as a UFO in a hangar somewhere. Many might smirk, “Well, he would say that.”

Nick’s lecture was good and the time passed quickly. He had no slides to present or anything to show on the big screen, but he is an engaging speaker and well worth seeing. His website can be found at http://www.nickpope.net

Lunch came around a little earlier than expected, due to the university’s cafeteria closing at 1pm. During lunch, Gary Heseltine announced that he is working on a movie script with Charles Halt about the Rendlesham Forest Incident. I wish Gary all the luck in the world, but, in this day and age, I cannot see a major studio financing such a film unless it has all the ‘bangs and whistles’. Where UFOs are concerned, studio executives want action, not some soldiers trudging through the woods at night with a Geiger counter. They want peril. They want moral dilemmas. Dare I say it, they might be more open to making a movie of Larry Warren’s account of what happened. At least that has actual aliens. I hope Gary and Charles are successful, though, because it’s been a while since we had a serious UFO movie. I enjoyed Race to Witch Mountain, but serious it wasn’t!

After lunch it was Ian R Crane’s turn at the podium. Ian’s forte is less ufological and more conspiratorial. His area of expertise is the area of the New World Order and its agenda for the human race.

Ian has given many lectures about the New World Order (NWO) and his style is humorous and engaging. He’s a great speaker and I consider myself a fan, though not necessarily agreeing with everything he puts out there.

As he often does at his lectures, Ian began with a video he had put together. It showed us, using the concept of entertainment and large events, such as the Olympics, how we can be conditioned to accept things that we would not normally. How what we are shown in the media is not always what it seems. How false flag operations can have us looking in the wrong direction 

What Ian was trying to get across was that the threat of an alien invasion may make us accept the curtailing of our freedoms for the sake of security. The same thing is currently happening with the threat of terrorism, but that is on a national level. A threat to the whole world from outside would enable the New World Order to initiate its global totalitarian government. How would they do this? They could do it by CGI in the media and, allegedly, 3D holograms projected into the sky.

Ian believes that a big false flag event will be staged to coincide with the 2012 London Olympics. His identification of the word ‘ZiON’ in the logo for the Games is famous.

According to Ian (and others) NWO Zionists, who have nothing to do with the Jewish people and don’t care about them one iota, by the way, feel that they need to control the people of the world through fear. We need something to be scared of. The fear of terrorism. The fear of war. The fear of an alien invasion. The fear of the Second Coming of Christ. The fear of Armageddon.

Ian refers to a publication called The Report from Iron Mountain: On the Possibility and Desirability for Peace. This was published in 1967 and there are still questions about whether or not it is a genuine document. The document relates that in order to achieve the desired one world government, a constant state of war was required. This was not to be a war of two opposing armies, but a war against the people, a phoney war to keep the world’s population terrified. To facilitate this, fake enemies would be created to keep the military-industrial complex busy, false proclamations about the global climate and levels of pollution would scare us into consuming less, there would be a world police force with unlimited powers, the population would be controlled via the use of drugs added to our food and water and finally, there would be the threat of an extraterrestrial invasion.

Ian refers to this assault on the people as ‘bio-spiritual warfare’. The NWO is using all of its arsenal to keep humanity from advancing. Ian said that the leaders of the NWO absolutely believe that they are descendants of the Anunnaki, a race of extraterrestrials that colonised Earth hundreds of thousands of years ago. Whether we believe this is irrelevant. They believe it.

Ian gave a potted history of the Anunnaki. The name has become familiar to many of us through the works of Zechariah Sitchin. Basically, the story revolves around the creation of man as a slave race, the Anunnaki bearing children with them and the subsequent Flood myths. It is these children of the coupling between the Anunnaki and humans, often called the Nephilim, whom the NWO believe they are descended from.

To keep their slaves from advancing, the NWO use tools such as debt, constant surveillance, junk food, microchipping, GM foods, vaccines, the dumbing down of the media, fear and transgenics (the splicing of different species). Companies such as Monsanto are deeply involved, as are many other trans-national corporations.

St Malachy, a twelfth-century Irish archbishop, had a vision of the last Popes of the Catholic Church. The final four, he said, were John Paul I, John Paul II, Benedict XVI and the last Pope, Peter II. Benedict XVI is the current Pontiff. St Malachy foretold that during the reign of Pope Peter II, great tribulations will occur and Rome will be destroyed.

The recent MPs expenses scandal was a smokescreen, said Ian, to distract the public from the European elections. The voter turnout was very low, because there was little media coverage, all attention being focussed on a few politicians fiddling their receipts. Small change!

Under the Treaty of Lisbon, the UK, along with its European partners, will cease to exist as we know it, replaced by a federal superstate under a single president. Ian believes the first president of this new regime will be Tony Blair.

As the NWO program unfolds, we will find ourselves becoming ever more scrutinised by the vast bureaucratic machine. Before 2015, microchipping of the population will become compulsory and our every move will be monitored at all times.

Then there is the ‘2012 Effect’. The year 2012 and its connection with End Time prophecy is very well-known, but Ian explained that the 2012 date only became part of the public consciousness in 1987, when Jose A. Arguelles published his book, The Mayan Factor: Path Beyond Technology. In that book, Arguelles told us that the incredibly accurate Mayan calendar ended its Long Count on 21st (or 23rd, depending who you read) December, 2012. Terrence McKenna also concluded that 2012 was an End Time nexus using different methods.

Then there’s the popular notion that the solar system will align with the centre of the galaxy (or ‘the Dark Rift’, a band of dust that dissects the Milky Way, during the winter solstice of 2012.

Ian also noted that remote viewers cannot see anything beyond 11:11am on December 21st, 2012.

On Tuesday 30th June, 2009, the BBC will be screening a documentary about the conspiracy theories surrounding the 7/7 London bombings of 2005. By the time you read this, it will have aired already. Ian stated that he was certain this would be nothing more than a hit-piece to ridicule the Truth Movement and that he refused to participate when contacted by the Beeb.

Ian firmly believes that attacks such as 9/11, 7/7, the Bali bombing and the Madrid bombing were false flag attacks perpetrated not by terrorist groups, but by our own security services under orders from the NWO. I absolutely agree with this and there is a lot of evidence available to see all over the internet that more or less proves this.

What can we do to stop this assault by the New World Order? We can spread the word. We can let ‘them’ know that we know what’s going on. If the NWO knows that we will not stand for all these fake events, they will fail in their agenda.

As usual, Ian’s lecture was fascinating and illuminating (forgive the pun) and I recommend everybody to catch one of his DVDs or watch his talks on Edge Media TV (if you have Sky!). Ian’s website can be found at http://www.ianrcrane.co.uk

American researcher, Richard Dolan, was up next. His lecture was entitled ‘Exopolitics and UFO Disclosure’.

Richard’s interest in UFOs began fifteen years ago when he was researching President Harry Truman and the formation of the National Security Act. He got a copy of Timothy Good’s book, Above Top Secret, and his interest was sparked.

Eventually, he wrote UFOs and the National Security State in 2000. The book covered the years 1941 to 1973. He was exhausted upon completing it, but found that he had to continue his research. This summer, he will release volume two, which will cover the years 1973-1991.

While volume one was more US-centric, his new book will have a more global outlook. Richard’s website says: “In this new volume, I treat the full range of issues presented by the UFO phenomenon during the 1970s, 1980s, and through the end of the Cold War in 1991. I analyze the phenomenon itself, the response by U.S. and global military authorities, and the evolving efforts of researchers to understand what it all meant. Behind it all, I observe the backdrop of a world in technological, economic, and political transformation.”

Richard has an odd way of looking at the subject of UFO Disclosure. He says: “Disclosure is impossible, but also inevitable.” He goes on to list some of the problems for Disclosure:


  1. The confrontational relationship with ‘them’.
  2. Explaining the illegal structures of secrecy.
  3. What the secret programs are about?
  4. Understanding who ‘they’ are.
  5. Understanding their interest in us.
  6. Challenges to the nature of power, politics, industry, legal, finance, elite control.
  7. Why Disclosure will happen anyway.

Richard listed some of the key UFO documents that have come to light over the years, including the Twining Memo, the Oak Ridge Memo, the Hanford AEC document, the Malmstrom AFB Memo and the famous Halt Memo.

There have been many confrontations between the world’s military and UFOs over the years. There were nine examples in the 1970s, such as the Tehran Incident of 1976, a UFO crash in Bolivia in 1978 and shots fired at a UFO over the Baikonur Space Centre in the USSR also in 1978.

Cases from the 1980s included the Peruvian Air Force opening fire on a UFO in 1980, the legendary Rendlesham Forest Incident, also from 1980, the Zimbabwean Air Force encounter of 1985 and a case from 1986 when Brazilian jets chased a UFO for 25 minutes.

Up to 1990, there were over 40 cases of Soviet jets encountering UFOs. How do we know about them? Well, when totalitarian regimes collapse, people start talking. Colonel Boris Sokolov stated that there were thousands of UFO cases from the USSR in the 1980s and that after the fall of the Soviet Union, Russian jet fighters continued to intercept UFOs in the 1990s.

In 2002, fifty years to the day since the famous 1952 flap, Washington DC again found itself invaded by UFOs. F16 fighter jets were scrambled numerous times, but failed to intercept the objects detected on radar. Government employee, Renny Rogers saw a bright blue light being chased by fighter jets over his Maryland home.

To this day no FOIA documents have been released about the 2002 DC event.

In 2008, the Texas town of Stephenville temporarily became one of the most famous places on Earth after UFOs were witnessed by numerous people. Some were seen to head across the sky in the direction of George W Bush’s Crawford Ranch, pursued by military jets.

The many confirmed military encounters beg the question: “Why are we chasing them?”

Richard said we should always be suspicious of any government announcement that might seem positive regarding UFOs and extraterrestrials. There is always some hidden agenda and that usually has nothing at all to do with the UFO subject.

The next segment was titles ‘The Structure of Secrecy: Crash retrievals and Money’.

In 1947, the Truman era, the Cold War was just kicking off. The president came to the conclusion that the UFO ‘problem’ had to be kept secret, that any crashed discs had to be kept out of the public eye and that there would be no sharing of extraterrestrial technology with the outside world. Was this the reason behind the formation of Majestic-12?

Another dilemma was about whether or not to keep the secret forever or place it under periodical review.

A decision was made to ‘go private’. This meant bringing in private corporations with high security clearances. The Military-Industrial Complex as we know it today. Since 1947, corporations and government have become inextricably linked. Terms such as Private Government and Shadow Government are bandied about. Secret programs sprang up under the umbrella of ‘The Black Budget’. Were these being developed from alien technology?

Senator Barry Goldwater once said: “This has gotten so highly classified [the secret projects or Black Budget]... it is just impossible to get anything on it.”

Apollo 14 astronaut, Edgar Mitchell, said: “We are looking at likely reverse-engineered technology in the hands of humans that are not under government control or any type of high-level control.”

How was all of this secret research paid for? Funds for the Black Budget come from covertly directing public money and supplementing that with private funds. But from where?

The CIA has tendrils reaching out all across America and the world. It plucks the best and brightest from top universities and dumps them into the ‘black’ world. People like Dr Donald Menzel, who was publicly very sceptical about UFOs, but privately accepted that there was something to the phenomenon, had a high rank in the National Security Agency (NSA).

Such far-reaching influence meant that UFO news stories could be choked-off at the national level, with most reports barely even making local news 

The CIA is well-known for using drug money to finance its ‘off-the-books’ operations. Similar tactics were (and maybe still are) employed to fund the Black Budget, illicit methods employed to raise capital.

Bill Sweetman, a well-known writer for Jane’s Defence Weekly (JDW), estimated that there were about 150 Special Access Programs (goon-speak for Black Budget projects) running in 1997. These projects have no democratic oversight, completely independent systems (they are not bound by national laws), they are run almost exclusively by private contractors and their source of funding is unknown.

Catherine Austin Fitts was head of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development during the administration of George HW Bush. She estimated that 85% of the US budget was ‘unauditable’. That means that there is no way to determine what money was spent where and where those funds came from. She also stated that $3.3 trillion (that’s $3,300,000,000,000!) disappeared from the budget between 1998 and 2001. Remember Donald Rumsfeld speaking on September 10th, 2001, saying that the Pentagon could not account for $2.2 trillion in funding??? Bonkers numbers!

James Goodall of JDW claimed that there were at least eight black projects running out of Groom Lake (Area 51 to the rest of us), including a ‘silent triangle’. His sources state that there are “things out there that are literally out of this world.”

George Knapp, the journalist famous for bringing Bob Lazar to the public, claims to have more than a dozen sources at Area 51. None of these (except Lazar) have ever been willing to speak publicly.

One such reverse-engineered craft is known as the ‘Alien Reproduction Vehicle’. It is approximately 15 feet wide, 9-10 feet thick and can travel between 15 and 500 miles per hour. It can execute a right-angled turn at 140 mph and may be able to ‘shape-shift’ to some degree. It was sighted over Nellis AFB in November, 1994. Richard is convinced that this is a man-made vehicle, not extra-terrestrial.

Such talk of Black Projects inevitably leads us to the question: Is there a secret space program and, if so, why?

There are many reports of anomalies on the Moon, Mars and even in Earth orbit or further out in space. Are these extraterrestrial or advanced bases or craft from Earth? Are we engaged in some form of intercourse with extraterrestrials within our own solar system?

Gary McKinnon, spoke of finding mention of ‘Non-terrestrial Officers’ and ‘Fleet-to-fleet transfers’ in his search for UFO evidence in the US computer files. Jeff Challender, who sadly died in 2007 after a long illness, found evidence of UFOs and other anomalies in space in transmissions from NASA and other space agencies. He posted them on his website http://www.projectprove.com

Disclosure will have to let us know about the revolutionary technologies and radical programs that have come into being in secrecy. Until then, all we have are questions.

Richard wondered if the covert world had evolved into a ‘breakaway civilisation’, a portion of humanity that has access to incredible technological resources yet chooses not to share that with its fellow, less-advanced kin. What would be the implications of artefacts elsewhere in our solar system? Why should they share their technology with the rest of the world?

What are the aliens like?

Richard explained that according to reports, they appear to be highly telepathic. They have the ability to manipulate space/time. They seem to have no emotions. Are they truly alien or from here? Are they truthful or do they deceive? There appear to be more than one species, each with their own agenda. Why are they abducting humans? Are they creating hybrids, a transgenic species (remember Ian Crane’s lecture earlier?)?

How would we deal with such advanced beings? Why are they interested in us? Are we advancing too rapidly? If we advance too quickly, can we survive?

Are we the ‘greatest show in the quadrant’? Are we worrisome? Do they want to control us? Will they want to help us manage our society so that we can survive?

Do some ETs look exactly like us and are already living here? What if other species war with each other? Should we ‘take sides’? What if they created us?

How would such a huge lie be undone? What would be the cultural, financial and religious consequences? Would we finally achieve ‘free energy’? Would the human power structure be capable of surviving? Would it be the end of our civilisation as we know it?

How prepared are we? Ultimately, we will have to live with ourselves. We will have to deal with Disclosure somehow. Change will come and we will have to cope. Disclosure is impossible and inevitable.

Richard gave a fascinating lecture that raised more questions than it answered. We know UFOs exist. We know the military encounter these things with alarming regularity. It’s what happens when the rest of the world catches up with what we already understand that is the big problem. Those of us interested in the UFO enigma are ready. Is everybody else?

Richard’s website can be found at http://keyholepublishing.com and he promised that volume two of UFOs and the National Security State would be out within 30 days of the lecture.

The final speaker of the event was perhaps the most controversial. Lloyd Pye has been studying the Starchild Skull for ten years and has yet to discover its deepest secrets. He calls it ‘the most important thing in the world that nobody knows about’ 

The skull was discovered in Mexico in 1930 about 100 miles south of Chihuahua. An American teenager was on vacation with her family in the Copper Canyon region and, despite warnings from locals, went exploring by herself.

She found an old mine tunnel and went inside. About fifty feet in, she found a human skeleton lying beside a mound of earth. Being raised in a desert region, she was used to finding bones out in the arid landscape, so she was not shocked by discovering this old grave.

She noticed that more bones were sticking out of the mound of earth. It was a misshapen hand, being firmly held by the skeleton lying beside the mound. She was sure that whatever was buried was put there by the skeleton on top of the dirt.

Being in a desert region and protected by the tunnel from the elements, the dirt still seemed fresh and she dug it away carefully. She saw a small skeleton with apparent deformities. The skull was large and the limbs small. She planned to take both skeletons back to the USA and donate them to a museum, but she had misgivings. Bundling them up, she hid them among the exposed roots of a nearby tree, so that she could retrieve them later, when she had decided what to do.

That night there was a torrential rain storm and it was three days before she could return to the tree and recover the bones. Unfortunately, the tree had been in a gulley and rainwater had washed them away.  She searched frantically for them, finding both skulls and some other fragments. All the bones had been damaged.

She returned to the United States, taking the remaining bones with her, keeping them as souvenirs of her Mexican holiday.

In the early 1990s, she found that she was dying of an illness and she asked some friends if they would take care of her skulls. Some years after her death, the skulls came into the possession of Ray and Melanie Young in 1998. Melanie was a neonatal nurse and immediately noticed something was odd about the smaller of the skulls. It was considerably lighter than the other and the ‘deformity’ was oddly symmetrical. She knew instantly that it was both special and unusual.

Both Ray and Melanie were members of El Paso MUFON, and they were of the opinion that this was the skull of a Grey!

They contacted Lloyd because of his experience with ‘hominids’ such as Bigfoot. He suggested that they get the skulls tested.

Bizarrely, they found that most experts did not want anything to do with the skull, with many simply dismissing it as ‘deformed’.

The bone is half as thick as a normal human cranium. The eye sockets are very shallow, meaning that the eyes would have protruded markedly. They were also much lower than is normal. As for the ‘deformity’, it was discovered that the Starchild (SC) skull was actually more symmetrical than a normal human skull!

The SC has no inion (the knot at the back of your head which is part of the occipital bone and is found in every ape skull), only a dent. The back of the human skull (which was female) showed signs of being cradle-boarded. This is common in cultures where mothers must return to work shortly after the birth of a child. They wrap up the baby and strap it to a board that can be worn by the mother. So the baby’s head doesn’t flop about, it is tied securely to the board, resulting in the soft, undeveloped cranium developing a flattened area at the back. The SC skull was not cradle-boarded.

It has been suggested that the SC skull shows signs of hydrocephaly, where fluid builds up in the young skull, forcing the head into a bulbous shape. The SC skull shows no similarities to this condition, the cranial sutures being well-healed and not showing evidence of widening.

The SC skull’s Basilar Part is missing, suggesting it was well under the age of 20 at death but this is still in dispute; it has tighter check muscles; its neck was 50% thinner than a typical human and was perfectly situated to balance the skull; it had no sinuses; its inner ear was much larger than normal.

The female skull was measured to have a capacity of about 1200cc, which is roughly normal for its date and origin: about 900 years old in Mexico. A modern human skull has a capacity of about 1400cc.

The SC has a capacity of 1600cc.

Brain specialists examined the skull and said that the SC’s brain should have slid out, having no real cerebellum to support it, yet it appears to have not been the case. Lloyd mused that perhaps the SC was telepathic, owing to the lack of sinuses and an apparently very small or missing tongue.

Dental x-rays initially suggested that this was the skull of a child and it was dubbed the Starchild. Lloyd said that this was the biggest mistake they made, as they now believe that the SC was a mature adult at death. The female lying beside it was confidently aged to 35-45 at death.

CAT scans confirmed that there was no premature closing of the cranial sutures and that the SC was apparently healthy at the time of death (if that makes sense). The inner ear was twice as large as a normal human’s and Lloyd suggests that this may help balance the large head on its skinny neck.

Under an electron microscope, the SC skull was found to be more similar to tooth enamel than bone. This made it very hard, despite its light weight and lack of thickness.

With a few exceptions, Lloyd found himself running into a scientific brick wall. He was often told that ‘nature can do anything’ and ushered out. He decided that the only way to get science to take notice was to get a good DNA analysis 

At the end of 1999, Lloyd looked for a lab that would test the SC skull’s DNA. Due to the skull being 900 years old, any DNA extracted would be classed as ‘ancient DNA’ and more stringent protocols were required due to possible contamination. AT the time, only six labs on the planet existed that could handle ancient DNA and none of them would cooperate.

A Canadian friend told Lloyd that he had a friend who was opening a new forensics lab at the University of British Columbia and he might be able to test the skull for him. Sure enough the university agreed and Lloyd sent off the skull. That is where the trouble started.

For a proper analysis, 1000 picograms of DNA needs to be extracted, yet the lab reached the conclusion that the SC skull was human with only 200 picograms. Lloyd said that they also contaminated their results. Amazingly (and he admitted this), he agreed to a second set of tests at the same laboratory. This time, one of the Sc’s teeth would be used as the sample. Again, they concluded that the skull was human from only a 200 picogram sample of DNA.

Lloyd was devastated. In 2002, he was bankrupt and done with the whole affair.

Then up stepped Belinda McKenzie. She funded more research and new DNA tests could be commissioned. By this time there were 24 labs that could handle ancient DNA. It was also now possible to extract both nuclear (passed on by both parents) and mitochondrial (passed on only by the mother) DNA strands.

Lloyd veered off at this point to discuss the abduction phenomenon. He referred to the many cases where women have been abducted, impregnated and returned. Later, they would be abducted again and the foetuses removed. During later abductions, they would often be introduced to human-alien hybrid children and be told that this was their child. Many of the witness drawings and sculptures match the SC skull quite well.

He also spoke briefly about the so-called ‘Conehead’ skulls. Science tells us that these skulls, found all over the world, are caused by the practice of skull binding. The skull is wrapped in tight bandages at a young age and the soft bones grow into a cone shape.

That’s all well and good and might sound reasonable, but the average capacity of these conehead skulls is twice that of ours, in the region of 2800-3000cc! Binding a skull does not make its capacity larger. Lloyd believes that these skulls should be DNA tested also.

He also mentioned Whitley Strieber’s Communion, perhaps the best-known abduction book ever published. Apparently the famous image of the Grey on the cover is not really like what Strieber described. It is too long and Lloyd feels that what Strieber saw may have looked more like the Starchild.

The popular History Channel series, UFO Hunters, looked into the SC skull for an episode. They commissioned a sculptor (who normally makes aliens for TV and movies) to recreate what the Starchild would look like if it was alive today. Lloyd suggested that the result looked more like Lee Harvey Oswald than a human-alien hybrid 

He suggested that the famous ‘Amoco alien’ (left) or the ‘Dreamland Grey’ (right) should be more close to what the SC really looked like. The black eyes could be lenses, he posited, to protect them from bright sunlight.

Back to the DNA analysis. The lab that agreed to the test both the SC skull and the human female skull found that the Starchild skull was very hard to cut. They also had problems dissolving the bone in the rocker. Human bone will dissolve in the fluid within about a week. The SC skull sample took months to dissolve.

A cross-section of the Sc skull showed unknown fibres running throughout its structure. It is still a mystery as to what these are and their function. They are clearly not bacterial or fungal in nature. The fibres are also extremely resistant to cutting. There is also much more collagen in the SC skull than is normal. Strange, red specks could be seen in the bone and, again, their purpose or origin is a mystery.

When the DNA test results came back, Lloyd was surprised to find that the female was not the Starchild’s mother! The mitochondrial DNA showed that the female was from haplogroup A, while the mtDNA from the Starchild belonged to haplogroup C. The SC had a human mother, but it was not the woman that died with him (the SC skull is thought to be male, I believe).

Unfortunately, the lab was unable to recover any nuclear DNA, so the identity of the father remains a mystery for now. Lloyd thinks that the inability to recover nuclear DNA might possibly suggest that the father of the Starchild is not human.

A company called 454 Life Sciences has developed a technology that would be able to extract the entire genome of the Starchild. The company is due to begin testing the system this year (2009). To get the Sc skull tested at 454 Life Sciences, Lloyd and his team need to raise $250,000. That might seem like a lot of money, but it could be money well-spent if we discover the true origins of the Starchild Skull.

I found Lloyd’s lecture to be excellent and completely fascinating. In fact I thoroughly enjoyed all of the speakers at the Expo. I hope Lloyd, Belinda and the Youngs find the funding to get the skull properly and definitively tested. Maybe once and for all, we can find out the origin of this remarkable, and perhaps tragic, little person.

Lloyd's website can be found at http://www.starchildproject.com

With Lloyd Pye finished, that drew the 1st Annual Leeds Exopolitics Expo to a close. My brother and I had a brilliant day and congratulations must go to David and Anthony and everybody behind the scenes for putting on a great event.

There were some minor niggles, with speakers having to be given ‘the hurry-up’ from time-to-time, as each one had just over an hour to cram in as much information as they could, but for the most part, everything went smoothly. I’m not sure if the air-conditioning affected other things in the hall because early on, they switch on the A/C, but later it was stifling in there. Maybe that’s something that can be addressed at the 2nd Annual Leeds Exopolitics Expo. Fingers crossed!

Steve Johnson – June 2009


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Updated 16th August, 2012