Sunday, January 7, 2007
UFO Over O'Hare International Airport
The Original Unidentified Flying Object?
Night before last I became aware of an intriguing UFO report thanks to MSNBC. Although the incident occurred in November and a number of United Air Lines employees witnessed the event, the story seems to have reached the mainstream media only this month.
This ”Chicago Tribune” story of describes the sighting at O’Hare Airport in November 2006. The National UFO Reporting Center (NUFORC) is a source of wider information. Near the bottom of the NURFORC Website referenced above is the first report, by an individual witness, which was received by NUFORC.
Typically, the efforts by company officials and self-styled experts to brush off UFO sightings sound silly in comparison with the sightings themselves. A number of United Airlines employees, including pilots, reported watching a very well defined saucerlike object of metallic appearance hovering above a concourse gate for several minutes before zooming straight up through the overcast sky so rapidly that it left a temporary hole in the cloud cover through which clear sky could be seen. The silliness begins with the wild guesses of non-witnesses that the event was an unidentified “weather phenomenon” or a “weather balloon”. Why this strange compulsion to ignore the details reported by competent witnesses so as to make some ridiculous “explanation” semi-plausible?
(A telephone inquiry from a United Airlines supervisor to the control tower asked if controllers had seen an “elliptical” object. The profile of a saucershaped object appears to be elliptical, or “cigar shaped”, if the object is viewed more from the side than the bottom.)
One witness, interviewed on a radio program, moves airplanes around the airport. Around 4:30 p.m. he was sitting in the cockpit of a passenger jet with a co-worker when its radio mentioned an object floating above one of the terminals. He was looking right at the reported location and saw a gray, circular object 20 to 30 feet in diameter at least 700 feet above the ground (about 30 degrees above the horizon when he first saw it). The sky was completely overcast; the object was right at the base of cloud cover. The witness thought it was strange that the top of craft was very well defined, distinct material, clearly outlined, while the bottom was hazy. (The interviewer commented that the same phenomenon had been reported in other UFO sightings. Visual reaction to a propulsion system?) After the witness had crossed the airport in the plane and looked back, he saw a hole, as if punched right through the clouds -- “like a cookie cutter stamped through dough”. The hole in the cloud cover was very similar in size to the object which had been seen below it. The witness thinks the object may have hovered over the airport for as long as 20 minutes.
I’ve always been fascinated by UFOs. Out of thousands of sightings there have of course been hoaxes – usually easy to identify and often associated with people who try to profit from them -- but I believe that very few people calculatingly make up stories about UFO sightings from whole cloth . . . or about “supernatural” experiences, for that matter. I personally believe that the proportion of such accounts which are deliberately invented is minor in comparison to the sincere reports.
Even given the genuineness of most sighting reports, we don’t seem to be any closer to an explanation than we were in the 1940’s. The immediate resort by the debunkers to jokes about “little green men from Mars” is a straw man trick. Our knowledge that these phenomena are not human aircraft does not mean that we know what they are or where they come from. I think we will become aware of inter-dimensional travel in addition to more than one method of space travel. It occurred to me some time ago that the behavior of UFOs resembles that of living organisms more than machines, and yet they are usually described as (and look in photographs) metallic in appearance. I don’t know. I just know that few of them are the products of lies.