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“Saucers, Spooks and Kooks” – A New UFO Book Reviewed

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Available right now is the new book from Adam Gorightly, Saucers, Spooks and Kooks. Its subtitle: UFO Disinformation in the Age of Aquarius. If, when it comes to the UFO phenomenon, you’re the kind of person who considers yourself to be a “true believer” or someone of the “I want to believe” type, then you might as well go and put a bullet in your head right now.  This is a book that makes it very clear the UFO history, lore and legend is not what it seems to be – and that it has been like that for a very long time. Decades, in fact. We’re talking about disinformation, counterintelligence, Russian spies, characters akin to The X-Files‘ “Cigarette Smoking Man” and espionage. And way more, too. Basically, what we have here is a 313-pages-long book that demonstrates how and why, for years, the UFO phenomenon has been manipulated by agencies of government, of the military and of intelligence agencies. That’s right: the UFO controversy is not what it appears to be. It’s even stranger. Much of it has been outright fabricated, and on many occasions done so to hide government secrets and military technology under a UFO banner. And it worked, as Gorightly shows us.

Nick Redfern grips onto his copy of Gorightly’s new book. Just in case “THEY” decide to confiscate it…

One of the most disturbing aspects of the story revolves around the cattle mutilation mystery – something that has been investigated by ufologists, police forces, the FBI, and more. Since the late 1960s, animals have been found with organs removed. Unmarked helicopters are seen over the areas of mutilation. And, a great deal of time and effort has been used to try and convince people that the mutilators are alien in origin. Gorightly, however, makes an extremely strong case that the truth had nothing to do with aliens. But, everything to do with secret, government concerns relative to radiation-based experiments in New Mexico, underground blasts, and how all of this may have had a terrible effect on the poor cattle herds of the United States. Thus, we see an early example of agencies using the UFO mystery to hide something else – something beyond ominous. You may not want to eat a steak again.

The legendary “Dulce, New Mexico Underground Alien Base“-debate takes up a lot of time – but it’s all worth it. If you come away from this part of the book still believing there really is an extraterrestrial base deep below Dulce then you’re an idiot. Or, someone who relies on nothing much more than faith. Incredibly, the reason why so many people bought into the stories of Dulce was because some of those same stories were created by the government itself! Again, it was to hide something else, something that ended with the life of one man, a scientist named Paul Bennewitz, ruined. Now, onto the most famous (or infamous) “leaked documents” in Ufology: the MJ-12 (or Majestic 12) documents. While the story began around 1980, it wasn’t until 1987 that the allegedly purloined papers hit the UFO community, and that detailed the nature of the group and its role in hiding the truth of Roswell. The real story of MJ-12, however, we learn, had far more to do with Russian agents, dangling carrots, and East-versus-West, Cold War-era “games.”

The grave of Paul Bennewitz, one of the key figures in Saucers, Spooks and Kooks. (Nick Redfern)

Area 51 is in the story, too. As is its – allegedly – most famous employee, Bob Lazar. Read this section and you’ll easily see how the whole Lazar affair revolved around not real UFOs, but a well-prepared theater, manipulation, and the gullible enthusiasm of ufologists. Add to that the matter of that the SERPO fiasco that had so many ufologists in states of absolute rapture, the late conspiracy-theorist Bill Cooper, and more and you get to see some of Ufology’s most popular “things,” but that really weren’t worth a shit. A few final words: the reason why Saucers, Spooks and Kooks works so well is because it’s primarily a book not about UFOs, but about people, about characters, about brilliant minds, about nutjobs, about outright liars, and of sinister figures in the U.S. government playing games with the public, with the media, and even with other agencies of that very same government. This book is fascinating, eye-opening, at times hilarious, sometimes sad, but never boring. Get a copy!

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