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Citizen hearings on UFO disclosure challenges decades of government cover-ups

By Askia Muhammad -Senior Editor- | Last updated: May 8, 2013 - 12:21:54 PM

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WASHINGTON ( - Rather than any transparency, there has been a lead shield for more than 60 years around information from the U.S. government concerning its investigations into Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs).

Going back to the 1947 incident in Roswell, New Mexico, to an even more shocking event in 1980 near a U.S. nuclear-armed Air Force base in Britain, there has been cover-up after cover-up, on top of cover-up of information from government investigations about these sightings.

At an extraordinary four days of hearings here at the National Press Club called the Citizen Hearing on Disclosure (CHD), several former U.S. Senators and House members heard testimony from experts and eyewitnesses, including one witness who characterized a 1980 incident—which took place over three consecutive nights at the dual air base RAF Woodbridge and the U.S. Air Force’s Bentwaters, in England—as being possibly the “defining event in UFO history.”

After listening to the accounts of two retired Air Force sergeants, and a retired high ranking British Defense Department official, former Congressional Black Caucus Chair Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick who presided over the all day meeting April 30, concurred, saying that the infamous Roswell incident “has nothing on this.”

Panelists shown on Day 2 of the Citizens Hearing on Disclosure.
“What I clearly saw and identified in my statement was an oval-shaped object that was orange in color that had a white light emanating below it with blue lights flying around it and an orange hue around it,” Sgt. James Penniston told The Final Call. “And there was a possible silhouette, in other words the shadows made it look like triangular or something like that. But at no time did I ever identify it as a craft itself, or touch it and say it was metallic in nature.”

If there were living beings piloting the craft he and at least 150 other Air Force and neighboring civilian personnel witnessed those three nights in December 1980, could they have been human rather than extra-terrestrial?

“I believe the size of the craft was too small to house a human pilot. I do believe it might have been a probe, though, a controlled probe by some sort of intelligence, yes,” Sgt. John Burroughs told The Final Call.

What made the incident at Bentwaters so special was that the UFOs involved may have tampered with the nuclear missiles which were secretly stored at the Bentwaters base, a place that was so secretive and so secure that then advanced retinal eye scanning devices were employed, years before they were put into use at other military facilities.

“The only thing I can say…that, that, what we saw in those fields that night in 1980, if that’s what we had then, it’s pretty scary what we’d have available today,” Sgt. Burroughs said. “That’s the best I can describe it. What we saw happen, I never saw in my whole career, anywhere, that I’ve seen aircraft or anything capable of doing that. So, if that’s the case, that we were that far advanced then, it’s pretty scary what we’d have today,” he continued, describing the super-advanced military capability of the craft, which landed, damaged trees in the forest, left radioactive contamination at its landing site, but never made a sound, Sgt. Burroughs said.

While it was not an official government hearing on UFOs, the CHD was a five-day congressional-style presentation that brought as many as 40 international researchers and military and scientific witnesses together to testify before the six former federal legislators. The hearing opened on day one with discussions describing the history of global UFO sightings and suspected UFO crashes, like the famous 1947 incident near Roswell, N.M.

For decades, The Final Call has published research chronicling the existence of what are commonly called UFOs.
“There obviously had to be a lot of discussion about what happened,” at Bentwaters, former Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md.) said. “There are three fairly obvious possibilities. One was, it was an experimental something we were doing. It was something the Soviets were doing, or it was extra-terrestrial.”

The Air Force, “said that it was alien. They said it was ‘E.T.-related.’ They said they had ‘floating stuff,’ and all this other stuff. ‘It was a UFO, with little green men,’ basically. That’s what they said it was,” Sgt. Burroughs said.

“Was it?” Chair Kilpatrick asked. “Absolutely not. It was a craft of unknown origin. I wasn’t able to determine the origin of the craft.” But when the craft took off it produced a jaw-dropping moment, he continued.

“The craft did generate more lighting and that concerned me. I wasn’t sure if it was going to explode. It rose off the ground. With that it went up to tree level and momentary hovered, and then took off in the blink of an eye.

“The things that it didn’t do, was stuff that it should have done. At least that’s what I was hoping. I was hoping for air displacement. All aircraft do that from the engines. I was hoping for aircraft sound. All aircraft do that. I was hoping for those type of things that would occur. One of the things that stopped was that after it reached a certain point was the static, the feeling of clothing (clinging). That did stop. It did it with silence,” said Sgt. Burroughs.

Rep. Kilpatrick (Center in Teal Blue) with Student Minister Khadir Muhammad of Muhammad Mosque #4 (Far Right) MUI students and staff. Photo: Richard B. Muhammad
“I also made an observation that I figured it was intelligent. I mean, I’m not saying it was manned. It was too small for that.” When the craft took off, it rose and then turned to its right, as though it was observing something there, he said, an obvious sign of intelligent control, rather than drone control.

“One of the questions that’s come up to me over the years is: ‘Was it us? Was it somewhere else? Or could it be both? I believe what we were looking at out there on those three nights was something that was going on both with us, and whatever we were doing, drew something in that created a reaction.

“I believe this case could be the defining case in the history of UFOs that might be able to break this open if there’s people there willing to take charge of this in the positions of power and look into this,” Sgt. Burroughs said.

“And to this day, I have not seen any technology that would even come close to replicating the technology that I observed that night,” he continued. “As a matter of fact if the United States had that kind of technology, you could probably cut your defense budget in half and not have to worry about a thing. I mean that would be the key to ‘Pax Americana,’ peace under American control.”

There was also testimony that day about several former U.S. presidents who showed great interest in UFOs and, in some cases, unsuccessfully attempted to get information about specific UFO issues. In the discussion of each incident there was also extensive testimony about the government’s efforts to cover them up and to hide any evidence of what happened when these sightings occurred.

The “cover-up” of the Bentwaters, England incident—which involved State Department as well as military investigations—may have been related to the fact that nuclear weapons were secretly deployed there. “I think part of the problem, they were drawn into the area—this object was drawn there—because there was a top-secret facility. It was a C-3 facility, communications, and it had a building there that at the time had a retinal eye-scanner. In 1980 that’s like high-tech stuff and you don’t really waste the government’s money on those kind of things over there, and they were civilians, none of those people were wearing uniforms. And just down the street was MI-6, British Intelligence,” Sgt. Burroughs testified.

Dick Gregory, longtime analyst and satirist, attended the hearings. He felt it should have included representatives of the indigenous peoples who have spoken of such visits for centuries. He had his own experience in San Francisco. He sees major implications if the truth about UFOs come out. Photo: Richard Muhammad
The shift commander at the time of the incident immediately instructed all Air Force personnel that the incident was classified, and that they were not to talk about it, despite widespread rumors and “scuttlebutt” talk throughout the area. All documents were immediately classified.

“And, what’s interesting, a CNN special assignments reporter attempted to do a report on the incident, and when he asked for the incident reports and the blotter entries on this, you want to (know)the answer that was given to him? ‘They disappeared. They’re lost. Somebody took them. We don’t know where they are,’” Sgt. Penniston testified.

In addition, all routinely recorded radio transmissions and conversations were also immediately confiscated, he said. “They had a general knowledge that this had been going on for a while,” Sgt. Penniston said. “And there’s been a concerted effort to deceive the people on it, the public.”

The two men who testified complained that they were denied medical treatment, and despite receiving honorable discharges when they retired from the Air Force, their medical records had also disappeared.

One colonel was in fact on the record saying that he was “aware that we were brought in and interrogated. He was aware that we were not treated properly, and that there was drugs, or in his words, we ‘were messed with.’ That’s where my problem starts with my chain of command,” Sgt. Burroughs told the hearing, “where were they for us when they knew this was going on, and why didn’t they stop it.

“General Williams, who we had a face-to-face with, said he’d try to help us, but when our attorney contacted him and asked him if he’d go on the record and do a statement, a sworn subpoena, he said he’d have ‘memory problems,’ that he would have a problem remembering everything that went on,” Sgt. Burroughs continued.

The reason for the cover-up must be “because of the lies that have been told for the last 85 years. They’ve been lying about UFOs, not because the American people can’t take it, but because they don’t want to get caught with their pants down,” he said.

The treatment of these men, who never broke ranks, who never went outside their chain of command, who maintained their silence about the incidents was horrific, they testified. “It shouldn’t surprise you, ma’am, that the government is not always honest,” Sgt. Penniston said in response to a question about being made to feel that he had done something wrong instead of having done everything “by the book.”

“We wanted it to go away. They said that if we were completely honest with them and upfront, this would go away. Great. That’s what we wanted. But it didn’t go away. Apparently under hypnosis, they continued to go ahead and interrogate us like we were prisoners of war. As a matter of fact, I think there’s laws against doing that to prisoners of war,” he continued.