Saturday, January 01, 2011
Back in the fall of 2009 I had a good streak in videotaping UFOs in a section of the city called Korea Town a few minutes away from downtown L.A. I had constant sightings even when I had no video camera with me they were every where. Some glimmered as they spun way up in the sky. It was a curious sight and these flying objects came in strange shapes. Some of these objects moved slowly and some even moved like birds, small, round and fast. Some looked like liquid silver plasma, some looked like white eggs. Some were dark and flat in shade with no reflection almost like soot. But what impressed me the most about these UFOs was the audacity of being visible in broad daylight. These objects would stay motionless for hours. So much so that I would call my friends to come over and witness these things with their own eyes. A few of my friends were very skeptical so I had to convince them by proving that these things existed and it wasn't just an over active imagination. Nevertheless when they saw these UFOs they scratched their heads and tried debunking them by stating that they were balloons, objects picked up by the wind, I even expected to hear the swamp gas theory, but I knew better. I had observed these objects for hours and even days to know these were intelligent in nature. These "Balloons" were driven by power and had awareness. Balloons float way with the wind and just go with the flow. Not these silver orbs. No wind could move these. They would also float against the wind and even speed up and vanish into thin air.
I would record them from my own bedroom window which is on the second floor of a building facing the Hollywood mountains. After a while I even started thinking they were purposely entertaining me. It sounds strange but somehow I felt some small connection to these familiar craft, drones, UFOs or what ever they may be. One night I went to bed early but I couldn't sleep. I tossed and turned but no matter what I did I just could not get any comfort. I slept with my windows open and the curtains clipped closed so that I can constantly keep a look out for anything interesting. That night was dead. Nothing flying except for helicopters and little Cessnas. I gave up around 1:30 in the morning and called it a night. I finally started getting drowsy and fell asleep only to wake up around 4:40 AM and take a urinary break. As I walked back to my room from the restroom I had a habit of always peeking out the window before I would lay in bed again and was shocked to be face to face with what looked like a dark black oblong hovering object almost like the size of a football except a little bigger and wider. This little craft was completely silent. I wasn't scared, but a little cautious. I walked slowly closer to my window and this craft did not move, it was dark outside but I was able to make out a slight dark burgundy copper like shine to it's surface and lines on it's side. It looked machine like, glossy and black. The whole sighting lasted about less than a minute. I was excited but motionless because I did not want to startle the thing. I would say this encounter lasted about maybe 30 seconds before it smoothly and super silently floated away to the right of my window and disappeared into the darkness.
Thanks for letting me tell this story to your fans Lon. I hope that maybe someone else has had a similar experience and would like to open up and share their story on your website.
Happy New Years 2011 to you and the whole Phantoms and Monsters folk out there. Keep looking up to those skies, you just never know who's up there looking down on you. Camda
(Posted are photographs taken of the view from the reader's bedroom window)
Fortean / Alternative News: River Mystery Solved, Psychic Buried Alive and Motorists Witness Triangle UFO
Victoria River Mysteriously Turns Bright Green - Update
nationalpost - Horrified nature-lovers at Goldstream Provincial Park watched as the Goldstream River turned bright green late Wednesday afternoon.
The fluorescent green colouring appeared to start about 500 metres on the Victoria side of the entrance to the park and, over the course of an hour, the substance flowed down into the environmentally sensitive estuary.
By 5:30 p.m. the river, known for its dramatic salmon runs, eagles and other wildlife, was back to its normal colour.
Ministry of Environment teams were immediately sent to the area to investigate and members of Langford Fire Department collected samples for analysis.
No dead fish or animals had been found by early evening.
Earlier in the day a fountain beside Veterans Memorial Parkway in Langford also turned bright green, said Langford Fire Chief Bob Beckett.
ctvbc - Officials from B.C.'s Ministry of Environment have determined that the substance used to turn the Goldstream River in Langford, B.C. neon green Thursday was non-toxic.
Lab results showed that the bright green hue was caused by a synthetic, organic compound called fluorescein, which is most commonly used as a fluorescent dye tracer in fluids.
Ministry staff say the substance is water soluble and don't think any fish or fish habitat were harmed by the incident.
Officials still don't know who dumped the fluorescein into the river.
Fire Chief Bob Beckett thinks the green waters may have been the result of an ill-conceived prank.
"In all likelihood it's a hoax. It may be a non-toxic substance but it's unfortunate that we had to utilize all sorts of resources to investigate this," he said.
Click for video
Psychic to be Buried Alive for a Week to Raise Money for Charity
thisisscunthorpe - A psychic will be buried six feet underground for charity.
Ian Lawman, who is also an exorcist and TV star, says he wants to stretch his talents and get as close to death without actually dying.
Of the week-long burial he said: “I have had the idea of being buried alive for two years now.
“At first it was just a thought, but now my coffin has been made I am becoming a lot more nervous.”
Click here for more
As the date of the burial approaches, Mr Lawman is training to ensure everything goes to plan.
“I won’t have any food or drink for seven days, but I will be taking 12 food tablets equalling 2,000 calories a day.
“My training involves hours of meditation, lying still for long periods of time. The coffin is larger than your average size, but movement is still limited.”
A live webfeed will be streamed throughout the seven days, enabling Mr Lawman to share his experiences and feelings with his fans.
No stunt of this nature would be complete with out an historic setting,
and Mr Lawman is confident he has the perfect location in Dudley Castle, near Birmingham.
He said: “I will be one foot away from the bones of soldiers lost in battle.
“With my gift as an exorcist, I travel all over the world and feel very lucky.
“I do have my doubts about the event, because the last six attempts by other people have gone wrong.
“Coffins have collapsed, people have overheated and others have had panic attacks.
“The coffin will have two funnels leading to the surface.
“One will be for viewers, over the seven days, to look down so they know I am in there, the other to supply oxygen underground.”
Money raised will go to PC David Rathband’s Blue Lamp Foundation for injured emergency service workers.
Indiana Motorists Pull Over After Spotting Triangle UFO
MUFON CMS - Indiana, December 27, 2010 - triangular shaped UFO with 2 red lights on side and one white orb in middle of craft sighted over Cleveland Ave.
I was driving southbound on Cleveland Ave, when the car in front of me put his breaks on and started to swerve like he wasn't paying attention.
Then something caught the corner of my eye and I looked up to see a large flying craft.
I pulled over as did the car in front of me and the car behind me. All of us got out to look at this thing.
It was triangular in shape with 2 red lights on one side and a large glowing white orb in the centre. It was approximately 2000ft in the air, completely silent, flying in a west to east direction. The colour of the craft was a white-greyish colour. It looked like there was something on the back of it, or like the back was a square, but it was really hard to tell.
There were also 2 jets flying over the craft, turning around and coming back. I tried to film it with my camera phone but I'm unable to make anything out. I lost sight of the object over the treeline.
Rael, Founder and Spiritual Leader of the Raelian Movement: 'For His Stance on Condoms, Pope Benedict XVI Should be Prosecuted for Crimes Against Humanity.'
LAS VEGAS, Dec. 26, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Rael, founder and spiritual leader of the Raelian Movement, said in a statement issued this morning that Pope Benedict XVI should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity "for his strong stance against the use of condoms".
A spokesperson for the Raelian Movement said that while recent publications "hint that the pope has finally come to favor condom use," the Vatican has just clarified Benedict's recent comments, emphasizing that he didn't mean condoms should be used to avoid pregnancy.
"In a statement released by the Vatican, the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith said the pope wasn't talking about using condoms during sex between married couples or as a form of contraception," the Raelian spokesperson explained. "Instead, according to the statement, he said they could be used in cases such as reducing the risk of HIV infection for male prostitutes.
In his own statement, Rael poked fun at the pope's position.
"Of course, condoms shouldn't be used to prevent pregnancy because we need billions of additional babies to reach overpopulation as soon as possible," he said. "Then we can watch billions starve to death because there isn't enough food on Earth for all of them!"
Rael said the Vatican's statement demonstrated a lack of compassion.
''For such a message, the pope should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity, which will happen one day!" Rael said, adding that millions of people die from AIDS "because they are good Catholics who listen to this irresponsible 'religious leader.' "
In London on Sept. 13, European Raelian Movement filed a lawsuit against Pope Benedict XVI (formerly Cardinal Ratzinger) in the High Court, Queen's Bench Division. Allegations in the suit include charges of violating international human rights laws and perpetrating genocide by continuing to claim that condoms don't stop the spread of AIDS. The file is still being processed by the High Court.
USS Enterprise Skipper Recorded Raunchy Films On Vessel
hamptonroads - In one scene, two female Navy sailors stand in a shower stall aboard the aircraft carrier, pretending to wash each other. They joke about how they should get six minutes under the water instead of the mandated three.
In other skits, sailors parade in drag, use anti-gay slurs, and simulate masturbation and a rectal exam. Another scene implies that an officer is having sex in his stateroom with a donkey.
They're all part of a series of short movies produced aboard the Norfolk-based aircraft carrier Enterprise in 2006 and 2007 and broadcast to its nearly 6,000 sailors and Marines. The man who masterminded and starred in them is Capt. Owen Honors - now the commander of the carrier, which is weeks away from deploying.
The videos, obtained by The Virginian-Pilot this week, were shot and edited with government equipment, many of them while the Enterprise was deployed supporting the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
At the time, Honors was the carrier's executive officer, or XO, the commanding officer's deputy. He took command of the ship in May.
In the videos, Honors indicates that he's trying to entertain the crew. They were shown roughly once a week on closed-circuit shipwide television, according to a handful of sailors who were assigned to the Enterprise at the time. The sailors requested anonymity for fear of retribution.
One of them said he mailed a complaint about the videos to the Navy Inspector General this week. Others said crew members who raised concerns aboard the ship in 2006 and 2007 were brushed off.
The videos were part of what Honors, 49, called "XO Movie Night."
"They were the XO's project," said one former Enterprise sailor, a ship video-grapher who on one occasion was asked to help in the filming. "He was the one coming up with scripts and the jokes. He was the one planning it."
The Enterprise, the world's first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, is set to deploy overseas this month. The videos raise serious questions about Honors' judgment, especially while the carrier is under way, said another sailor, an officer aboard the Enterprise who was also there when the videos were being shown.
"When the ship pulls away from that pier, he's it," the officer said. "To me, that's scary."
It's unclear why the videos recently resurfaced, although one sailor who spoke to the newspaper said they remain on at least one shipboard computer.
Honors is a native of Syracuse, N.Y., and graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1983. He went on to fly the F-14 Tomcat and work as a test pilot before serving as XO on the Enterprise from July 2005 to September 2007.
Honors did not respond to requests for comment. Neither did the Enterprise's then-commanding officer, Larry Rice, who was later promoted to the rank of the rear admiral and now works at the Norfolk-based U.S. Joint Forces Command.
Rear Adm. Raymond Spicer and Vice Adm. Daniel Holloway, who commanded the Enterprise carrier strike group during Honors' time as XO, could not be reached.
The Navy released a written statement late Friday in response to The Pilot's inquiries.
"The videos created onboard USS Enterprise in 2006-2007 were not created with the intent to offend anyone," the statement said. "The videos were intended to be humorous skits focusing the crew's attention on specific issues such as port visits, traffic safety, water conservation, ship cleanliness, etc."
The statement said that when leaders with the carrier strike group became aware of the inappropriate content in early 2007, production of the videos ended.
At least one video that includes anti-gay remarks and officers pretending to masturbate was made after July of that year, according to Honors' comments in it.
The Navy said it plans to launch an investigation.
At the beginning of the videos, Honors jokes that his bosses shouldn't be held responsible for them. "As usual, I want to say that the captain and the admiral - they don't know anything at all about the content of this video or the movie this evening, and they should absolutely not be held accountable in any judicial setting," he says.
The sailors who spoke to the newspaper said it's hard to believe that Honors' superiors on board weren't aware of the videos as soon as he began showing them in 2006, given that they were routinely broadcast for the entire crew.
"People talked about them," the former ship videographer said. "People looked forward to them - at least the people who thought they were funny."
A female sailor who was assigned to the Enterprise at the time said she and a number of other women on board were offended by the videos. She said some crew members complained about them, and in fact, Honors acknowledged it on camera. In one movie, he says, "Over the years I've gotten several complaints about inappropriate materials in these videos, never to me personally but, gutlessly, through other channels."
He adds, "This evening, all of you bleeding hearts... why don't just go ahead and hug yourself for the next 20 minutes or so, because there's a really good chance you're gonna be offended."
Then Honors tells his viewers to get ready for something that always pleases: "the F-bomb." The video goes on to show a string of clips edited together in which he uses the expletive.
The next portion is a series of clips displaying Honors and other sailors, including officers, pretending to masturbate. It's set to a song called "Spank."
After that, the video returns to Honors. "Finally, let's get to my favorite topic - something foreign to the gay kid over there: chicks in the shower," he says.
He gestures to the person next to him - who, through a trick of video, is Honors wearing the blue coveralls of a Navy surface warfare officer, or SWO. SWOs include the officers who crew the ship; they don't include fighter pilots and other aviators. Repeatedly in the videos, Honors, a former Top Gun pilot, draws distinctions between aviators and SWOs and refers to SWOs as "fags."
The video then shows two female sailors pretending to shower together and two male sailors pretending to shower together. While the shots imply nudity, they don't show any; the men are filmed from the waist up and the women from their shoulders.
In one instance, the women are in the shower stall with a cardboard cutout of Honors.
The sailors who spoke to The Pilot estimated that Honors made a few dozen videos for XO Movie Night. They said not all of them contained sexual jokes and anti-gay remarks.
The videos were shot and edited using equipment from the ship's public affairs office, which typically spends deployments documenting and publicizing the good work of sailors.
Of note is the quality of the XO Movie Night videos and the time that Honors appears to have devoted to them, even as the Enterprise was simultaneously supporting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and its air wing was dropping record numbers of bombs. The videos have plots, scripts, props and recurring characters.
In several instances, Honors plays more than one character in the same scene. To achieve this, it appears he recorded different takes in which he played the different roles, and then superimposed the takes over each other, allowing himself to appear on screen as two or three people at once.
"Some of it was pretty complicated stuff," the former ship videographer said.
The videographer said that while he knew the movies weren't appropriate, in some ways he can understand how they happened.
"In his defense, I'll say that sometimes, when you've been out to sea for a while, cut off from everything, you start to think things that you would never normally do are actually a good idea," he said. "You do stupid stuff to stay sane."
He added that electronic communication with the rest of the world while at sea can be difficult; it was nearly impossible to e-mail or upload videos from the carrier in 2006 and 2007.
"He probably figured they'd never get off the ship."
Friday, December 31, 2010
"THE SOUNDS OF DISTANT THUNDER"
Near Colonia Año De Juarez, Mexico - May 30, 1986 - 8:30pm
Carlos was bicycling back home after visiting family and was using a side road in order to avoid the heavy traffic. Soon about 500 meters ahead he noticed what appeared to be two large luminous eyes staring at him. As he approached the eyes the bicycle light turned off and Carlos movements seemed to become lethargic.
A short figure with large luminous eyes approached the witness and ordered Carlos to follow him. The figure remained 4 meters ahead of Carlos, who seemed unable to resist and followed the creature to a field were a large lighted object rested on the ground. A ramp descended to the ground and Carlos entered the craft, followed by two more short humanoids.
Inside he found himself in a lighted circular area with what appeared to be a square table in the middle of the room. In a corner stood a taller more heavyset figure with large luminous eyes. For some unknown reason, Carlos knew that this creature was the "leader." He described the figure as having a huge oval shaped hairless head, with large black eyes lacking any pupils. It had two holes for ears, two holes for a nose and a slit like lipless mouth. The head was directly set on its shoulders, lacking a neck and appeared to have a hump on its back. It had dark gray skin, resembling that of an elephant, with long thin arms and legs. A bizarre feature was its hands, which ended in numerous thin filaments resembling roots. No apparent clothing was seen.
At this point the witness was very afraid but heard a mental message imploring to be calm, that they did not harm humans. A telepathic conversation ensued in which the humanoid invited the witness to come with them to their place of origin. The witness declined the invitation and was told that they understood his decision. He was then shown on a diffused screen on a wall a dry arid world apparently the humanoid's point of origin. He was also informed that they could transform their bodies and appearance at will, and was given a brief demonstration.
Suddenly the witness was overcome by "darkness" and then passed out. When he woke up he found himself lying on the road next to his bicycle at about 2200. He suffered from severe insomnia for the next two weeks and from terrible nightmares. He found several round red marks around the belly button area and circular marks around his under arms. Later under hypnosis he was able to remember that at one point onboard the craft he was taken into a room where he saw numerous objects resembling telephone booths. He was asked to enter one of them, once inside a bright blue light covered his body. Once outside he looked inside another one of the booths and saw a figure identical in appearance to him. Before leaving he was told by the leader to keep an eye for the sign of their return by being aware of "the sounds of distant thunder."
Source: Contacto Ovni
LATE NIGHT INTRUDER
Near Orlinda, Tennessee - July 14, 1996 - 1:00am
A family of four was suddenly awakened by weird noises coming from the trailer's backyard deck. Grabbing a flashlight, the father went to investigate. Sliding the door open he illuminated the deck's wooden railing. he then heard a noise that sounded like "something running across the deck, bumping into things." The noise startled him. Neither of his dogs had barked at the intruder. Shining his flashlight toward the railing, he saw something rear up, and stare at him between the rails. He described it as a kind of rubbery or pulpy object five feet in diameter. It extended a tentacle or appendage through the railing and onto the deck floor. The witness estimated the appendage was "18 to 24 inches long" resembling an elephant's trunk.
He went to wake up his two sons, and then the whole family watched the creature from the trailer's dining room window. The wife also noticed some bright lights some distance away. Every time the family members aimed their flashlight at the creature it acted in a very defensive manner, moving very fast over the yard, under cars, back under the deck, and apparently changed into a glowing disk at times. At 400am the main witness left the trailer to look for his dogs, he found them very subdued, one of them had a wound to his hind leg, just inside the thigh and limped as if in great pain. Meanwhile a luminous object hovered over a nearby clearing, shooting off beams of light. The witness was apparently struck by these beams of light on the elbow and the neck. The man and his two sons followed the creature to the family's parked cars. They then noticed the window of both vehicles covered with some kind of fog or ice, and one of the cars had some kind of electrical hum about it, and the antenna was shaking. They again saw the creature around sunup in a ditch nearby and phoned the sheriff's Department.
Source: UFO Roundup
Sverdlovsk, Russia - November 1991 - night
Someone pushing down hard on him suddenly awakened 42-year old Victor K at night. After opening his eyes he was surprised to see a man dressed in white clothing standing before him. As Victor attempted to rise from the bed he found himself totally paralyzed and unable to speak. Mentally he asked the stranger the following question: "Who are you"? Suddenly the stranger turned to him and Victor was stunned to see that instead of a face he had what appeared to be a "plate" or flat screen on his face. And then Victor saw unknown images and pictures running through the screen. Somehow Victor understood that this was the means to communicate with the stranger. Victor then asked, where are you from? Reciprocal picture appeared on the facial screen of a volumetric image of our galaxy from a different point of view, in successive pulsations it presented several celestial bodies. Victor then asked, "What will happen to the earth? Reciprocal picture: Large apple tree, under it an anthill. Apple tree grows; it becomes large and moves aside the anthill. On the spot where the anthill grew now he sees hundreds of dead ants. Victor then asks, "How can we save the Earth? Interestingly instead of a picture he received a telepathic answer, "Stop the unrestricted use of energy and the use of "atoms", energy on earth is obtained irrationally. The tenth planet of your solar system perished because of this reason. Victor then asked, what is the time difference between you and us? Reciprocal picture: A quiet calm creek and a stormy waterfall then the numbers, one year and ten minutes. Victor then asked, how do you moved in space? A voice answered, "We do not move, we are everywhere all the time". Victor then asked, are the UFOs your ships? He then receives a curious answer, "No those are terrestrial in nature, and we don't use them". Victor, Why did you contact me? He heard a voice, "We want to make you our representative on Earth". Victor then added, Why precisely me? Voice answered, "You possess sequential thinking. We need a representative since we expend to much energy during terrestrial materialization." Victor was then shown what he understood was a very ancient book. Some of the pages were black. And suddenly he understood that it was the bible and some of the information within was incorrect. The stranger then promised Victor that he would return in six months and then noiselessly dissolved into thin air. Victor was then able to rise from bed and walked over to the kitchen where he felt as he was running a fever and fell exhausted to the floor and slept until the next morning. Six months later Victor suffered from unexplained seizures, headaches and strange markings were found on his body. Several items except for the bible caught fire in his house and were completely reduced to ashes.
Source: Svetlana Semenova, X-Libri UFO, Russia
Near Mossoro Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil - early 1988 - 8:30pm
Antonio Fernandes Duarte was driving to his thirteen hundred acre farm during a light rain and as he was entering his property he saw a huge ball of light off to his left about 40 meters away. It was an oval shaped object on the ground with a large light and resting on three legs. The witness stopped and noticed that the craft was dull, silvery metallic and about the size of a car, about three meters high. The legs were about two meters long.
He was able to see three very small men standing in the door, which was like a window hinged at the top, and two were on the ground. There was an accordion like cable coming out of their backs. One wore amber colored jumpsuit; the other wore orange and the third grayish-green. He stood at the door of the object. They seemed to be about four-feet tall, well proportioned with somewhat largish heads. There faces appeared flat and their skin seemed to be grayish in color. They appeared not to notice the witness and seemed to be distracted. One was going down on the ground and then he would go back into the ship. He would do this by jumping and floating to the ground and float back up again. A cable connected him. During the whole time the object emitted a beeping sound. As the witness watch there was a sudden flash of light, and everything disappeared. He felt his body completely numb after the flash of light.
Fortean / Alternative News: Thomas Jefferson's UFO, Neck Massager Kills Doctor and Icelandic Anomaly
Mr. Jefferson and the UFO
rbedrosian - "No. III. Description of a singular Phenomenon seen at Baton Rouge, by William Dunbar, Esq. communicated by Thomas Jefferson, President A. P. S.
Natchez, June 30th, 1800.
Read 16th January 1801.
A phenomenon was seen to pass Baton Rouge on the night of the 5th April 1800, of which the following is the best description I have been able to obtain.
It was first seen in the South West, and moved so rapidly, passing over the heads of the spectators, as to disappear in the North East in about a quarter of a minute. It appeared to be of the size of a large house, 70 or 80 feet long and of a form nearly resembling Fig. 5. in Plate, iv.
It appeared to be about 200 yards above the surface of the earth, wholly luminous, but not emitting sparks; of a colour resembling the sun near the horizon in a cold frosty evening, which may be called crimson red. When passing right over the heads of the spectators, the light on the surface of the earth, was little short of the effect of sun-beams, though at the same time, looking another way, the stars were visible, which appears to be a confirmation of the opinion formed of its moderate elevation. In passing, a considerable degree of heat was felt but no electric sensation. Immediately after it disappeared in the North East, a violent rushing noise was heard, as if the phenomenon was bearing down the forest before it, and in a few seconds a tremendous crash was heard similar to that of the largest piece of ordnance, causing a very sensible earthquake.
I have been informed, that search has been made in the place where the burning body fell, and that a considerable portion of the surface of the earth was found broken up, and every vegetable body burned or greatly scorched. I have not yet received answers to a number of queries I have sent on, which may perhaps bring to light more particulars.
Claim of UFO at John Lennon's Memorial Peace Tower Light
MUFON CMS - Mothership UFO Sighting flies through John Lennon's Memorial Peace Tower Light Caught on Cam, Dec 30, 2010.
Date of sighting: December 30, 2010 (although there is a comment of Dec 31, I think this was taken Dec 30, since today is 31st and current view is daytime in Iceland.)
Location of sighting: Reykjavik, Iceland
While watching the amazing memorial tribute cam of the Imagine Peace Tower cam the UFO seemed to stand out more than the light. The side of the cam has older still shot hours earlier and these two photos were those.
In the first you can clearly see an extremely long craft with the Imagine light reflecting off of its surface and sides. This UFO flew right through the Imagine light tower but for it to have gone unnoticed, it must have been traveling very fast indeed, yet not so fast that a still image could not be captured.
The second image seems to show UFO orbs that are interested in the light beam. Since this light could be seen miles away, it will draw the attention of everyone in that vicinity of Iceland, even aliens might be curious about the what and the why of it all.
Doctor Killed By Neck Massager
miamiherald - Her neck aching after a night of wrapping gifts on Christmas Eve, Dr. Michelle Ferrari-Gegerson used an electronic massager to relieve the pain.
That night, her lifeless body was found by her husband on the bedroom floor of their Parkland home.
The culprit: the massager, say Broward Sheriff's Office detectives and the Medical Examiner's Office.
They believe it got tangled in her necklace and strangled her.
Ferrari-Gegerson, 37, worked as a radiologist in the emergency room of Jackson Memorial Hospital and was the mother of a 1-year-old, colleagues said.
``Last week she was here and she brought baked goods for various employees,'' said Barbara Perez Deppman, director for radiology at the hospital. ``That's what type of person she was. Out of the blue, she would just give people food vouchers and take them out to lunch.''
According to BSO, Ferrari-Gegerson was discovered unconscious about 9 p.m. Christmas Eve by her husband, Dr. Kenneth Gegerson, a dentist.
Gegerson, 43, called 911.
When deputies and paramedics arrived, they found the electronic massager on the floor near her, according to BSO.
BSO is withholding the brand and other details of the electronic massager while the investigation continues.
Ferrari-Gegerson's apparent accident is not the first incident where an electronic massager has reportedly strangled someone.
In December 2008, the Matoba Electric Manufacturing Company based in Saitama, Japan recalled an electronic foot massager after three reported cases in that country of women strangling themselves accidentally while using the machine as a neck massager.
In all the cases, the women removed a cloth cover from the Arubi Shape-Up roller, and the collar of their shirts ended up getting caught in the machine's rollers.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has reported recalling three types of electronic massagers since 1998, though none were reported to have caused a death.
Instead, each recall involved back massagers that posed more of a fire hazard.
The most recent recall was in April 2006 for the Brookstone Foldable Massaging Bed Rest. The product was recalled after complaints that electrical circuits overheated and posed a fire and burn hazard.
In December 2001, the manufacturers of the Deep Knead Shiatsu back massagers voluntarily recalled about 15,000 of the machines after complaints that it overheated and posed a fire hazard.
And in May 1998, the commission recalled 183,000 back massage cushions distributed by Sears, because the devices' motors had the tendency to over heat and burn through the cushion.
A graduate of Florida Atlantic University and the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Ferrari-Gegerson had been at Jackson since 2001.
Besides working as a radiologist, Ferrari-Gegerson served as the quality improvement and patient safety physician for radiology. She also had been an assistant professor of clinical radiology at UM for about two years.
``She was really an amazing human being in the sense that she was a proficient physician,'' said Deppman.
Jailed US Sisters May Be Freed If One Donates Kidney
Two US women convicted of armed robbery can be released but only if one donates a kidney to the other, the governor of Mississippi has said. Jamie and Gladys Scott were convicted in 1994 of taking part in a robbery that netted a mere $11.
Their lawyer, Chokwe Lumumba, hailed Gov Haley Barbour's decision as a victory. The sisters were eligible for parole in 2014 and rights activists had criticised their sentence as harsh.
Jamie, 38, who requires daily dialysis, and Gladys, 36, are serving life sentences. Mr Lumumba said: "I think it's a victory. I talked to Gladys and she's elated about the news. I'm sure Jamie is, too."
He said Gladys had volunteered the donation. Mr Barbour, a Republican, will agree the indefinite suspension of their sentences, which can be reversed if terms are broken.
Thursday, December 30, 2010
AFP - The coming year will be an important one for space weather as the Sun pulls out of a trough of low activity and heads into a long-awaited and possibly destructive period of turbulence.
Many people may be surprised to learn that the Sun, rather than burn with faultless consistency, goes through moments of calm and tempest.
But two centuries of observing sunspots -- dark, relatively cool marks on the solar face linked to mighty magnetic forces -- have revealed that our star follows a roughly 11-year cycle of behaviour.
The latest cycle began in 1996 and for reasons which are unclear has taken longer than expected to end.
Now, though, there are more and more signs that the Sun is shaking off its torpor and building towards "Solar Max," or the cycle's climax, say experts.
"The latest prediction looks at around midway 2013 as being the maximum phase of the solar cycle," said Joe Kunches of the Space Weather Prediction Center at the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
But there is a prolonged period of high activity, "more like a season, lasting about two and a half years," either side of the peak, he cautioned.
At its angriest, the Sun can vomit forth tides of electromagnetic radiation and charged matter known as coronal mass ejections, or CMEs.
This shock wave may take several days to reach Earth. When it arrives, it compresses the planet's protective magnetic field, releasing energy visible in high latitudes as shimmering auroras -- the famous Northern Lights and Southern Lights.
But CMEs are not just pretty events.
They can unleash static discharges and geomagnetic storms that can disrupt or even knock out the electronics on which our urbanised, Internet-obsessed, data-saturated society depends.
Less feared, but also a problem, are solar flares, or eruptions of super-charged protons that can reach Earth in just minutes.
In the front line are telecommunications satellites in geostationary orbit, at an altitude of 36,000 kilometres (22,500 miles) and Global Positioning System (GPS) satellites, on which modern airliners and ships depend for navigation, which orbit at 20,000 kms (12,000 miles).
In January 1994, discharges of static electricity inflicted a five-month, 50-million-dollar outage of a Canadian telecoms satellite, Anik-E2.
In April 2010, Intelsat lost Galaxy 15, providing communications over North America, after the link to ground control was knocked out apparently by solar activity.
"These are the two outright breakdowns that we all think about," said Philippe Calvel, an engineer with the French firm Thales. "Both were caused by CMEs."
In 2005, X-rays from a solar storm disrupted satellite-to-ground communications and GPS signals for about 10 minutes.
To cope with solar fury, satellite designers opt for robust, tried-and-tested components and shielding, even if this makes the equipment heavier and bulkier and thus costlier to launch, said Thierry Duhamel of satellite maker Astrium.
Another precaution is redundancy -- to have backup systems in case one malfunctions.
On Earth, power lines, data connections and even oil and gas pipelines are potentially vulnerable.
An early warning of the risk came in 1859, when the biggest CME ever observed unleashed red, purple and green auroras even in tropical latitudes.
The new-fangled technology of the telegraph went crazy. Geomagnetically-induced currents in the wires shocked telegraph operators and even set the telegraph paper on fire.
In 1989, a far smaller flare knocked out power from Canada's Hydro Quebec generator, inflicting a nine-hour blackout for six million people.
A workshop in 2008 by US space weather experts, hosted by the National Academy of Sciences, heard that a major geomagnetic storm would dwarf the 2005 Hurricane Katrina for costs.
Recurrence of a 1921 event today would fry 350 major transformers, leaving more than 130 million people without power, it heard. A bigger storm could cost between a trillion and two trillion dollars in the first year, and full recovery could take between four and 10 years.
"I think there is some hyperbole about the draconian effects," said Kunches.
"On the other hand, there's a lot we don't know about the Sun. Even in the supposedly declining, or quiet phase, you can have magnetic fields on the Sun that get very concentrated and energised for a time, and you can get, out of the blue, eruptive activity that is atypical. In short, we have a variable star."
Strange Hot Commodities in North Korea
nypost - Skinny jeans, adult films and human excrement were among some of the most wanted items for consumers in North Korea, Yonhap news agency reported Tuesday.
Kim Young-soo, a political science professor at Seoul's Sogang University, said at a conference Tuesday that the items were selling "like hot cakes" in North Korea.
Kim interviewed several recent defectors from the Communist country, who said that other popular items sold in North Korea included TV dramas and instant noodles.
Yonhap reported that shops began selling human excrement to deal with acute shortages of fertilizer in North Korea. "Each household used to use human excrement as fertilizer, but because it's hard to keep up with the amount, human manure shops showed up at markets," Kim said.
Skinny jeans also became popular items for sale in the North after a ban on fashionable trousers was lifted.
"Skinny jeans are now popular and are changing the fashion style of women in Pyongyang," Kim added, citing sources in North Korea.
Couple Accused of Using Pliers to Pull Child's Teeth, Toenails
fox59 - Authorities believe an Indiana woman and her boyfriend used a pair of pliers to pull out a three-year-old boy's teeth and toenails last November.
Andrew Richards, 27, was charged with child battery and confinement. The boy's mother, 22-year-old Jessica Carder, was charged with aiding child battery and neglect. Both were held on a $50,000 cash bond in the Jefferson County Jail in Madison Tuesday.
Richards admitted to pulling the boy's teeth but did not say how.
"I just pulled a tooth. My dad pulls my teeth all the time. I ain't traumatized," Richards said to reporters as he was escorted back to jail.
Prosecutors said they know how Richards pulled those teeth.
"There's evidence, supported by their interviews that pliers were used to extract the teeth. There is also damage to the gum line," Jefferson County Prosecutor Chad Lewis said.
He also said there was evidence Richards had been taking and abusing Oxycontin that night. Richards denied those allegations. Carder did not have anything to say about the charges.
The boy's grandfather, Karl Andersen, said he sought custody for the boy after incidents that happened earlier in the year. The boy is currently in custody of his biological father's parents.
"It's kind of hard to understand him talking because he's got all them teeth missing on the top," Andersen said. "He's doing really good."
Richards and Carder each face a maximum of 20 years behind bars for the charges.
Quidditch For Muggles
Quidditch, the game popularised in the Harry Potter books, is now being played by students around the world. So just how do you turn a magical sport into something that can be played in real life?
As a group of college students gather on a cold Sunday morning outside the White House for their weekly sports practice, it's hard not to smirk.
Watching adults run around the field with household brooms and mops between their legs, wearing makeshift wizards' capes, is quite a sight, after all. But in non-wizarding society (or the muggle world, for those of you in the know), one has to improvise.
"A Quidditch game might look crazy to somebody who's never seen it before," says Mariah Hegelson, treasurer of the George Washington University team, in Washington DC.
"But to an external observer watching a basketball game for the first time, that might look crazy too," she says, without a hint of irony.
For those who have managed to escape all things Harry Potter, Quidditch is the fictional sport popularised in JK Rowling's best-selling books. Continue reading at Quidditch for Muggles
Suspicious Death Ignites Fury in China
nytimes - A man lies on a road with his eyes closed, blood streaming from his half-open mouth, his torso completely crushed under the large tire of a red truck. One arm reaches out from beneath the tire. His shoulder is a bloody pile of flesh. His head is no longer attached to the flattened spinal cord.
The man in the photograph, Qian Yunhui, 53, has become the latest Internet sensation in China, as thousands of people viewing the image online since the weekend have accused government officials of gruesomely killing Mr. Qian to silence his six-year campaign to protect fellow villagers in a land dispute. Illegal land seizures by officials are common in China, but the horrific photographs of Mr. Qian’s death on Saturday have ignited widespread fury, forcing local officials to offer explanations in a news conference.
It is the latest in a string of cases in which anger against the government has been fanned by the lightning-fast spread of information online. In late October, the son of a deputy police chief in central China drunkenly drove his car into two college students, killing one and injuring another. His parting phrase as he drove away from the scene of the crime — “Sue me if you dare, my father is Li Gang!” — has since become a byword for official corruption and nepotism.
Officials in the city of Yueqing in Zhejiang Province, which supervises Mr. Qian’s home village, insist that the photographs show nothing more than an unfortunate traffic accident. They made their case in a hastily arranged news conference on Monday afternoon, as the images of Mr. Qian’s death continued proliferating on the Internet. Mr. Qian’s family, some Chinese reporters and residents of Zhaiqiao Village cite the photographs as proof of foul play and a sloppy cover-up.
It is unclear who took the photographs, but they first appeared Sunday afternoon on Tianya, a popular online forum for discussing Chinese social issues.
Within 36 hours, the initial post attracted nearly 20,000 comments. It has since been deleted. Tianya and two other Web sites that reported on the case together got 400,000 hits, according to Xinhua, the state news agency. The Chinese government goes to great lengths to block servers here from accessing information it deems harmful to political stability, but censors have apparently failed to keep up with the proliferation of blog posts related to Mr. Qian. Once the information had spread, higher authorities apparently found it necessary to show the public they were looking into the matter — officials from the nearby city of Wenzhou ordered police officers from there to go to Yueqing to assist the investigation, Xinhua reported.
Chinese Internet users were drawn not only to the gruesome images, but also to the fact that the land dispute involving Mr. Qian is a common narrative in China.
In 2004, the city government approved construction of a power plant in Zhaiqiao Village. The company building the plant got virtually all the arable land in the village, and the 4,000 or so villagers received no compensation, according to a blog post on Tianya that was written four months ago under Mr. Qian’s name. At the time, Mr. Qian and other villagers went to government offices to protest the land grab, and riot police officers beat more than 130 people and arrested 72, the post said.
Mr. Qian, the former Communist Party representative in the village, traveled to Beijing to file a petition with the central authorities. In the news conference on Monday, city officials said that Mr. Qian had been arrested, found guilty of criminal conduct and imprisoned at least twice. Mr. Qian continued his crusade after recently being released from prison. Before his death, he was the overwhelming favorite of the villagers in a coming election for village chief, according to local media reports.
Around 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Mr. Qian received a call on his cellphone and walked out as he was talking, according to a report by Chinese Business News that cited Mr. Qian’s wife, Wang Zhaoyan.
An hour later, he was run over by the red truck, his body crushed beneath the left front tire. The driver, Fei Liangyu, has been detained, according to a statement on the Yueqing city government Web site.
Chinese news reports said another villager, Qian Chengwei, told people that he had watched as the victim was held down in the road by several men wearing security uniforms. One of the men waved his hand, and a truck then drove slowly over Mr. Qian, the reports said. Villagers arriving at the scene were immediately suspicious. They refused to allow the police to remove Mr. Qian’s body, and a scuffle ensued.
The witness and the victim’s family members were detained, according to Southern Daily, a newspaper based in Guangdong Province. Government officials told the newspaper that the witness was a drug user.
Local news organizations reported Tuesday that Mr. Qian’s family members have been released. Phone calls to Mr. Qian’s home were not answered.
Internet users and Chinese reporters have continued to question the explanation by city officials, pointing to discrepancies revealed by the photos. Why does the front of the truck show little sign of impact or blood? Why, if Mr. Qian had been accidentally hit while walking upright, is his body lying completely perpendicular to the truck’s tire? Why was a brand-new security camera at the intersection where Mr. Qian killed not working on Saturday? Who called Mr. Qian on that fateful morning?
“A few years ago, there were other people petitioning with my dad,” one family member, Qian Shuangping, told China Business Daily. “Some of them were bought off. Some of them got scared. We said: ‘Just take some money and forget it. What if something happens to you?’ My father wouldn’t listen to us.”
NOTE: a communist government operating under a capitalist guise that includes internet access and free markets can only lead to one of two realities....return to totalitarianism or a social revolution. Lon
Click for video
Anne Strieber posted this video today at Unknowncountry.com. Some of the comments on YouTube are interesting. Honestly, I've never been convinced of Alison Kruse's videos but Strieber seems to feel her evidence is legit...Lon
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Preamble: On the night of February 25, 1942 an incident occurred over the city limits of Los Angeles, California. Some say that there were visiting spacecraft from another world, or dimension, that hovered over a panicked and blacked-out LA in the middle of the night just weeks after the Pearl Harbor attack. Others were convinced that this huge ship was some unknown Japanese aircraft. It was attacked as it hung, nearly stationary, over Culver City and Santa Monica by dozens of Army anti-aircraft batteries in full view of hundreds of thousands of residents. This was the Battle of Los Angeles.
Incident: The sudden appearance of the enormous round object triggered all of LA and most of Southern California into an immediate wartime blackout with thousands of Air Raid Wardens scurrying all over the darkened city while the drama unfolded in the skies above...a drama which would result in the deaths of six people and the raining of shell fragments on homes, streets, and buildings for miles around.
Dozens of gun crews and searchlights of the Army's 37th Coast Artillery Brigade easily targeted the huge ship which hung like a surreal magic lantern in the clear, dark winter sky over the City of the Angels. Few in the city were left asleep after the Coastal Defense gunners commenced firing hundreds and hundreds of rounds up toward the glowing ship which was apparently first sighted as it hovered above such west side landmarks as the MGM studios in Culver City. The thump of the batteries and the ignition of the aerial shells reverberated from one end of LA to the other as the gun crews easily landed scores of what many termed "direct hits"....all to no avail. Here now, is what the night skies of LA looked like at the height of the firing.
Pay close attention to the convergence of the searchlights and you will clearly see the shape of the visitor within the illuminated target area. It's a BIG item and seemed completely oblivious to the hundreds of AA shells bursting on and adjacent to it which caused it no evident dismay. There were casualties, however...on the ground. At least 6 people died as a direct result of the Army's attack on the UFO which slowly and leisurely made its way down to and then over Long Beach before finally moving off and disappearing.
WITNESS ACCOUNT: In February, 1942, Katie was a young, beautiful, and highly-successful interior decorator and artist who worked with many of Hollywood's most glamorous celebrities and film industry luminaries. She lived on the west side of Los Angeles, not far from Santa Monica. With the outbreak of the war with Japan and the rising fear of a Japanese air attack, or even invasion of the West Coast, thousands of residents volunteered for wartime duties on the home front. Katie volunteered to become an Air Raid Warden as did 12,000 other residents in the sprawling city of Los Angeles and surrounding communities.
In the early morning hours of February 25th, Katie's phone rang. It was the Air Raid supervisor in her district notifying her of an alert and asking if she had seen the object in the sky very close to her home. She immediately walked to a window and looked up. "It was huge! It was just enormous! And it was practically right over my house. I had never seen anything like it in my life!" she said. "It was just hovering there in the sky and hardly moving at all." With the city blacked out, Katie, and hundreds of thousands of others, were able to see the eerie visitor with spectacular clarity. "It was a lovely pale orange and about the most beautiful thing you've ever seen. I could see it perfectly because it was very close. It was big!"
The U.S. Army anti-aircraft searchlights by this time had the object completely covered. "They sent fighter planes up (the Army denied any of its fighters were in action) and I watched them in groups approach it and then turn away. There were shooting at it but it didn't seem to matter." Katie is insistent about the use of planes in the attack on the object. The planes were apparently called off after several minutes and then the ground cannon opened up. "It was like the Fourth of July but much louder. They were firing like crazy but they couldn't touch it." The attack on the object lasted over half an hour before the visitor eventually disappeared from sight. Many eyewitnesses talked of numerous "direct hits" on the big craft but no damage was seen done to it. "I'll never forget what a magnificent sight it was. Just marvelous. And what a gorgeous color!", said Katie.
Chilly Throng Watches Shells Bursting In Sky By Marvin Miles (Los Angeles Times)
Explosions stabbing the darkness like tiny bursting stars... Searchlight beams poking long crisscross fingers across the night sky...Yells of wardens and the whistles of police and deputy sheriffs...The brief on-and-off flick of lights, telephone calls, snatches of conversation: 'Get the dirty...' That was Los Angeles under the rumble of gunfire yesterday.
Sleepy householders awoke to the dull thud of explosions... "Thunder? Can't be!" Then: "Air Raid! Come here quick! Look over there...those searchlights. They've got something...they are blasting in with anti-aircraft!" Father, mother, children all gathered on the front porch, congregated in small clusters in the blacked out streets -- against orders. Babies cried, dogs barked, doors slammed. But the object in the sky slowly moved on, caught in the center of the lights like the hub of a bicycle wheel surrounded by gleaming spokes.
Speculation fell like rain. "It's a whole squadron." "No, it's a blimp. It must be because it's moving so slowly." "I hear planes." "No you don't. That's a truck up the street." "Where are the planes then?" "Dunno. They must be up there though." "Wonder why they picked such a clear night for a raid?" "They're probably from a carrier." "Naw, I'll bet they are from a secret air base down south somewhere." Still the firing continued. Like lethal firecrackers, the anti-aircraft rounds blasted above, below, seemingly right on the target fixed in the tenacious beams. Other shots fell short, exploding halfway up the long climb. Tracers sparked upward like roman candles. Metal fell. It fell in chunks, large and small; not enemy metal, but the whistling fragments of bursting ack-ack shells. The menacing thud and clank on streets and roof tops drove many spectators to shelter.
WARDENS DO GOOD JOB
Wardens were on the job, doing a good job of it. "Turn off your lights, please. Pull over to the curb and stop. Don't use your telephone. Take shelter. Take shelter." On every street brief glares of hooded flashlights cut the darkness, warning creeping drivers to stop. Police watched at main intersections. Sirens wailed enroute to and from blackout accidents. There came lulls in the firing. The search lights went out. (To allow the fighter planes to attack?). Angelinos breathed deeply and said, "I guess it's all over." But before they could tell their neighbors good night, the guns were blasting again, sighting up the long blue beams of the lights.
The fire seemed to burst in rings all around the target. But the eager watchers, shivering in the early morning cold, weren't rewarded by the sight of a falling plane. Nor were there any bombs dropped. "Maybe it's just a test," someone remarked. "Test, hell!" was the answer. "You don't throw that much metal in the air unless you're fixing on knocking something down." Still the firing continued, muttering angrily off toward the west like a distant thunderstorm. The targeted object inched along high, flanked by the cherry red explosions. And the householders shivered in their robes, their faces set, watching the awesome scene.
The following are excerpts from the primary front page story of the LA Times on February 26th:
Army Says Alarm Real Roaring Guns Mark Blackout
Identity of Aircraft Veiled in Mystery; No Bombs Dropped and No Enemy Craft Hit; Civilians Reports Seeing Planes and Balloon
Overshadowing a nation-wide maelstrom of rumors and conflicting reports, the Army's Western Defense Command insisted that Los Angeles' early morning blackout and anti-aircraft action were the result of unidentified aircraft sighted over the beach area. In two official statements, issued while Secretary of the Navy Knox in Washington was attributing the activity to a false alarm and "jittery nerves," the command in San Francisco confirmed and reconfirmed the presence over the Southland of unidentified planes. Relayed by the Southern California sector office in Pasadena, the second statement read: "The aircraft which caused the blackout in the Los Angeles area for several hours this a.m. have not been identified." Insistence from official quarters that the alarm was real came as hundreds of thousands of citizens who heard and saw the activity spread countless varying stories of the episode. The spectacular anti-aircraft barrage came after the 14th Interceptor Command ordered the blackout when strange craft were reported over the coastline. Powerful searchlights from countless stations stabbed the sky with brilliant probing fingers while anti-aircraft batteries dotted the heavens with beautiful, if sinister, orange bursts of shrapnel.
City Blacked Out For Hours
The city was blacked out from 2:25 to 7:21 am after an earlier yellow alert at 7:18 pm was called off at 10:23 pm. The blackout was in effect from here to the Mexican border and inland to the San Joaquin Valley. No bombs were dropped and no airplanes shot down and, miraculously in terms of the tons of missiles hurled aloft, only two persons were reported wounded by falling shell fragments. Countless thousands of Southland residents, many of whom were late to work because of the traffic tie-up during the blackout, rubbed their eyes sleepily yesterday and agreed that regardless of the question of how "real" the air raid alarm may have been, it was "a great show" and "well worth losing a few hours' sleep." The blackout was not without its casualties, however. A State Guardsman died of a heart attack while driving an ammunition truck, heart failure also accounted for the death of an air raid warden on duty, a woman was killed in a car-truck collision in Arcadia, and a Long Beach policeman was killed in a traffic crash enroute to duty. Much of the firing appeared to come from the vicinity of aircraft plants along the coastal area of Santa Monica, Inglewood, Southwest Los Angeles, and Long Beach.
In its front page editorial, the Times said: "In view of the considerable public excitement and confusion caused by yesterday morning's supposed enemy air raid over this area and its spectacular official accompaniments, it seems to The Times that more specific public information should be forthcoming from government sources on the subject, if only to clarify their own conflicting statements about it."
"According to the Associated Press, Secretary Knox intimated that reports of enemy air activity in the Pacific Coastal Region might be due largely to 'jittery nerves.' Whose nerves, Mr. Knox? The public's or the Army's?"
WORLD WAR II UFO SCARE By Paul T. Collins Fate Magazine July, 1987
On Wednesday, February 25, 1942, as war raged in Europe and Asia, at least a million Southern Californians awoke to the scream of air-raid sirens as Los Angeles County cities blacked out at 2:25 AM. Many dozed off again while 12,000 air raid wardens reported faithfully to their posts, most of them expecting nothing more than a dress rehearsal for a possible future event - an invasion of the United States by Japan. At 3:36, however, they were shocked and their slumbering families rudely roused again, this time by sounds unfamiliar to most Americans outside the military services.
The roar of the 37th Coast Artillery Brigade's antiaircraft batteries jolted them out of bed and before they could get to the windows the flashing 12.8 pound shells were detonating with a heavy, ominous boomp - boomp - boomp and the steel was already raining down. All radio stations had been ordered off the air at 3:08. But the news was being written with fingers of light three miles high on a clear star-studded blackboard 30 miles long.
The firing continued intermittently until 4:14. Unexploded shells destroyed pavement, homes and public buildings, three persons were killed and three died of heart attacks directly attributable to the one hour barrage. Several persons were injured by shrapnel. A dairy herd was hit but only a few cows were casualties.
The blackout was lifted and sirens screamed all clear at 7:21. The shooting stopped but the shouting had hardly begun. Military men who never flinched at the roar of rifles now shook at the prospect of facing the press. While they probably could not be blamed for what had happened, they did have some reason for distress. The thing they had been shooting at could not be identified.
Caught by the searchlights and captured in photographs, was an object big enough to dwarf an apartment house. Experienced lighter-than-air (dirigible) specialists doubted it could be a Japanese blimp because the Japanese had no known source of helium, and hydrogen was much too dangerous to use under combat conditions.
Whatever it was, it was a sitting duck for the guns of the 37th. Photographs showed shells bursting all around it. A Los Angeles Herald Express staffer said he was sure many shells hit it directly. He was amazed it had not been shot down.
The object that triggered the air raid alarm had drawn 1430 rounds of ammunition from the coast artillery, to no effect. When it moved at all, the object had proceeded at a leisurely pace over the coastal cities between Santa Monica and Long Beach, taking about 30 minutes of actual flight time to move 20 miles; then it disappeared from view.
You can well imagine with what chagrin public information officers answered press queries. The Pasadena Office of the Southern California Sector of the Army Western Defense Command simply announced that no enemy aircraft had been identified; no craft was shot down; no bombs were dropped; none of our interceptors left the ground to pursue the intruder.
Soon thereafter US Navy Secretary Frank Knox announced that no planes had been sighted. The coastal firing had been triggered, he said, by a false alarm and jittery nerves. He also suggested that some war industries along the coast might have to be moved inland to points invulnerable to attacks from enemy submarines and carrier-based planes.
The press responded with scathing editorials, many on page one, calling attention to the loss of life and denouncing the use of the coast artillery to fire at phantoms. The Los Angeles Times demanded a full explanation from Washington. The Long Beach Telegram complained that government officials who all along had wanted to move the industries were manipulating the affair for propaganda purposes. And the Long Beach Independent charged: "There is a mysterious reticence about the whole affair and it appears some form of censorship is trying to halt discussion of the matter. Although it was red-hot news not one national radio commentator gave it more than passing mention. This is the kind of reticence that is making the American people gravely suspect the motives and the competence of those whom they have charged with the conduct of the war."
The Independent had good reason to question the competence of some of the personnel responsible for our coastal defense operations as well as the integrity and motives of our highest government officials. Only 36 hours before the Long Beach air raid, a gigantic Japanese submarine had surfaced close to shore 12 miles north of Santa Barbara and in 25 minutes of unchallenged firing lobbed 25 five-inch shells at the petroleum refinery in the Ellwood oil field. The Fourth Interceptor Command, although aware of the sub's attack, ordered a blackout from Ventura to Goleta but sent no planes out to sink it. Not one shot was fired at the sub.
After the Ellwood incident had alerted all the West Coast defense posts to possible repeat attacks, these units were sensitive to anticipated invasion attempts. By Wednesday morning in the Los Angeles area they were ready to open fire on a boy's kite if it in any way resembled a plane or a balloon. Secretary of War Henry Stimson praised the 37th Cost Artillery for this attitude. It is better to be a little too alert than not alert enough, he said. At the same time he delicately suggested that it might have been a good idea to send some of our planes up to identify the invading aircraft before shooting at them.
Planes of the Fourth Interceptor Command were, in fact, warming up on the runways waiting for orders to go up and interview the unknown intruders. Why, everybody was asking, were they not ordered to go into action during the 51-minute period between the first air-raid alert at 2:25 AM and the first artillery firing at 3:16?
Against this background of embarrassing indecision and confusion, Army Western Defense Command obviously had to say something fast. Spokesmen told reporters that from one to 50 planes had been sighted, thus giving themselves ample latitude in which to adjust future stories to fit whatever propaganda requirements might arise in the next few days.
When eyewitness reports from thousands searching the skies with binoculars under the bright lights of the coast artillery verified the presence of one enormous, unidentifiable, indestructible object - but not the presence of large numbers of planes - the press releases were gradually scaled downward. A week later Gen. Mark Clark acknowledged that army listening posts had detected what they thought were five light planes approaching the coast on the night of the air raid. No interceptors, he said, had been sent out to engage them because there had been no mass attack.
Believing an aerial bombardment was in progress, some people thought they saw formations of warplanes, dogfights between enemy craft and our fighter planes and other things that they assumed were evidence of such an attack. Obviously there were no dogfights because none of our interceptors were in the air. Tracer bullets were fired from military ground stations and some people mistook the fire pattern made by these projectiles for aerial combat. Other observers reported lighted objects which were variously described as red-and-white flares in groups of three red and three white, fired alternately, or chainlike strings of red lights looking something like an illuminated kite.
People suggested that some of these lights were caused by Japanese-Americans signaling approaching Japanese aircraft with flares to guide them to selected targets, but because no bombs were dropped, the theory was quickly abandoned. In any case, such charges fitted in perfectly with a hysterical press campaign to round up all citizens of Japanese descent and put them in concentration camps.
During the week of the Japanese submarine attack on the Ellwood oil field and the air raid on Los Angeles County, the press took full advantage of the made-to-order situation. Arrests of suspects were quickly made and the FBI was called in, but the Long Beach Press Telegram stated all investigations indicated nobody was signaling the enemy from the ground.
Santa Barbara's Ellwood Oil Field Submarine Attack
The LA Times: "From Santa Barbara, area of the submarine attack Monday night, District Attorney Percy Heckendorf said he would appeal to Lt. Gen. John L. DeWitt, commanding officer of the Western Defense Command, to make Santa Barbara County a restricted area for enemy nationals and American-born Japanese as well. "There is convincing proof," Heckendorf asserted, "that there were shore signals flashed to the enemy." Heckendorf said the people will hold Gen. DeWitt responsible if he failed to act. Army ordinance officers, meanwhile, were studying more than 200 pounds of shell fragments from missiles fired by the submarine, which caused only $500 damage in the Ellwood oil field near Santa Barbara."
It is said by some locals that the skipper or one of the officers on the Japanese sub had worked in the Ellwood oil field some years prior to the outbreak of the war. The story claims that the man had been mistreated by some of his co-workers during that time, had returned to Japan before the war began, and had then subsequently helped lead the submarine back to the area to make it's attack.
Glendale News Press
Wednesday, Feb. 25, 1942
ANTI-AIRCRAFT GUNS BLAST AT L.A. MYSTERY INVADER
Raid Scare Blacks Out Southland, but Knox Claims 'False Alarm'
Washington(AP)-Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox said today that there were no planes over Los Angeles last night. "That's our understanding," he said. He added that " none have been found and a very wide reconnaissance has been carried on." He added, "it was just a false alarm."
Anti-aircraft guns thundered over the metropolitan area early today for the first time in the war, but hours later what they were shooting at remained a military secret. An unidentified object moving slowly down the coast from Santa Monica was variously reported as a balloon and an airplane.
No bombs were dropped and no planes were shot down during the anti-aircraft firing in the Los Angeles area, the western defense command said in San Francisco.
"Cities in the Los Angeles area were blacked out at 2:25 a.m. today on orders from the fourth interceptor command when unidentified aircraft were reported in the area," the western defense command said.
"Although reports are conflicting and every effort is being made to ascertain the facts, it is clear that no bombs were dropped and no planes were shot down."
"There was a considerable amount of anti-aircraft firing. The all-clear signal came at 7:25 a.m."
Army Scofts at Civilian Reports
Army intelligence, although uncommunicative, scoffed at reports of civilian observers that as many as 200 planes were over the area.
There were no reports of dropping bombs, but several instances of damaged property from anti-aircraft shells. A garage door was ripped off in a Los Angeles residential district and fragments shattered windows and tore into a bed where a few moments before Miss Blanch Sedgewick and her niece, Josie Duffy had been sleeping.
A santa Monica bomb squad was dispatched to remove an unexploded anti-aircraft shell in a driveway there.
Wailing air raid sirens at 2:25 a.m. awakened most of the metropolitan's three million citizens. A few minutes later they were treated to a gigantic Fourth-of-July-like display as huge searchlights flashed along a 10-mile front to the south, converging on a single spot high in the sky.
Anti-Aircraft Guns Open Fire
Moments later the anti-aircraft guns opened up, throwing a sheet of steel skyward.
Tracer bullets and exploding shells lit the heavens.
Three Japanese, two men and a woman, were seized at the beach city of Venice on suspicion of signaling with flashlights near the pier. They were removed to FBI headquarters, where Richard B. Hood, local chief, said, "at the request of Army authorities we have nothing to say."
A Long Beach police sergeant, E. Larsen 59, was killed in a traffic accident while in route to an air raid post.
Henry B. Ayers, 63-year-old state guardsman, died at the wheel of an ammunition truck during the black-out. Physicians said a heart attack was apparently responsible.
Rumors of Planes Downed Spiked
Police ran down several reports that planes had been shot down, but said all were false alarms.
Aircraft factories continued operation behind blackened windows, while ack-ack guns rattled from batteries stationed near-by.
A Japanese vegetable man, John Y. Harada, 25, was one of three persons arrested on charges of violating a county black ordinance. Sheriff's Capt. Ernest Sichler said Harada, driving to the market with a load of cauliflower, refused to extinguish his truck lights.
Others held on similar charges were Walter E. Van Der Linden, Norwalk dairy man, accused of failing to darken his milking barns, and Giovouni Ghigo, 57, nabbed while driving to market with a truckload of flowers.
Traffic Snarl Follows All Clear Signal
Soon traffic was snarled. Thousand of southern Californians were an hour or more late to their jobs.
There were isolated incidences of failure to comply with black-out regulations. Neon signs were glowing inside stores. Traffic signals continued to flash in some areas.
Radio stations went off the air with the first alert, and were not permitted to resume broadcasting until 8:23 a.m.
There was speculation, that the unidentified object, might have been a blimp-although veteran lighter-then-air-experts in Akron, O., the nations center of such construction, said Japan was believed to have lost interest in such craft following experiments in World War I. These sources said inability to obtain fire proof helium caused discarding of such plans.
Observers lent some credence to the blimp theory by pointing out that the object required nearly thirty minutes to travel 20 or 25 miles-far slower then an airplane.
Unidentified Planes Pass Over Harbor
An official source which declined to be quoted directly told The Associated Press in Los Angeles that United States Army Planes quickly went into action. Later however, another official said no United States craft had taken off because of possible danger from the army's own anti-aircraft fire.
A newspaper man at San Pedro said airplanes passed over the Los Angeles-Long Beach harbor area. The craft were not identified.
There were no reports of any attempt to bomb southern California from the air although many war-vital factories, shipyards and other defense industries were on the route the object followed.
Although some watchers said they saw airplanes in the air, semi-official sources said they probably were the United States Army's pursuits.
All the action, clearly spotlighted for ground observers by 20 or so searchlights, was just a few miles west of Los Angeles proper.
Object Disappears Over Signal Hill
Observers said the object appeared to be 8000 ft or higher.
Firing, first heard at 3 a.m., ceased suddenly at 3:30 a.m., after the object disappeared south of Signal Hill, at the east edge of Long Beach. Anti-aircraft guns fired steadily for two minute periods, were silent for about 45 seconds, and continued that routine for nearly a half an hour.
All of southern California from the San Juaquin valley to the Mexican border was blacked out. Los Angeles doused its lights first, at 2:25 a.m.. San Diego, just 17 miles from the border did not receive its lights out order until 3:05 a.m.
When daylight and the all-clear signal came, Long Beach took on the appearance of a huge easter egg-hunt. Kiddies and even grown-ups scrambled through the streets and vacant lots, picking up and proudly comparing chunks of shrapnel fragments as if they were the most prized possession they owned.
Witness Scott Littleton: I was an eye-witness to the events of that unforgettable February morning in February of 1942. I was eight-years-old at the time, and my parents lived at 2500 Strand in Hermosa Beach, right on the beach. We thus had a grandstand seat. While my father went about his air-raid warden duties, my late mother and I watched the glowing object, which was caught in the glare of searchlights from both Palos Verdes and Malibu/Pacific/Palisades and surrounded by the puffs of ineffectual anti-aircraft fire, as it slowly flew across the ocean from northwest to southeast. It headed inland over Redondo Beach, a couple of miles to the south of our vantage point, and eventually disappeared over the eastern end of the Palos Verdes hills, what's today called Rancho Palos Verdes. The whole incident last, at least from our perspective, lasted about half an hour, though we didn't time it. Like other kids in the neighborhood, I spend the next morning picking up of pieces of shrapnel on the beach; indeed, it's a wonder more people weren't injured by the stuff, as we were far from the only folks standing outside watching the action.
In any case, I don't recall seeing any truly discernable configuration, just a small, glowing, slight lozenge-shaped blob light-a single, blob, BTW. We only saw one object, not several as some witnesses later reported. At the time, we were convinced that it was a "Jap" reconnaissance plane, and that L.A. might be due for a major air-raid in the near future. Remember, this was less than three months after Pearl Harbor. But that of course never happened. Later on, we all expected "them," that is, the Military, to tell us what was really up there after the war. But that never happened, either.
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THE ARMY AIR FORCES IN WORLD WAR II; DEFENSE OF THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE
“The Battle of Los Angeles”
During the night of 24/25 February 1942, unidentified objects caused a succession of alerts in southern California. On the 24th, a warning issued by naval intelligence indicated that an attack could be expected within the next ten hours. That evening a large number of flares and blinking lights were reported from the vicinity of defense plants. An alert called at 1918 [7:18 p.m., Pacific time] was lifted at 2223, and the tension temporarily relaxed. But early in the morning of the 25th renewed activity began. Radars picked up an unidentified target 120 miles west of Los Angeles. Antiaircraft batteries were alerted at 0215 and were put on Green Alert—ready to fire—a few minutes later. The AAF kept its pursuit planes on the ground, preferring to await indications of the scale and direction of any attack before committing its limited fighter force. Radars tracked the approaching target to within a few miles of the coast, and at 0221 the regional controller ordered a blackout. Thereafter the information center was flooded with reports of “enemy planes, ” even though the mysterious object tracked in from sea seems to have vanished. At 0243, planes were reported near Long Beach, and a few minutes later a coast artillery colonel spotted “about 25 planes at 12,000 feet” over Los Angeles. At 0306 a balloon carrying a red flare was seen over Santa Monica and four batteries of anti-aircraft artillery opened fire, whereupon “the air over Los Angeles erupted like a volcano.” From this point on reports were hopelessly at variance.
Probably much of the confusion came from the fact that anti-aircraft shell bursts, caught by the searchlights, were themselves mistaken for enemy planes. In any case, the next three hours produced some of the most imaginative reporting of the war: “swarms” of planes (or, sometimes, balloons) of all possible sizes, numbering from one to several hundred, traveling at altitudes which ranged from a few thousand feet to more than 20,000 and flying at speeds which were said to have varied from “very slow” to over 200 miles per hour, were observed to parade across the skies. These mysterious forces dropped no bombs and, despite the fact that 1,440 rounds of anti-aircraft ammunition were directed against them, suffered no losses. There were reports, to be sure, that four enemy planes had been shot down, and one was supposed to have landed in flames at a Hollywood intersection. Residents in a forty-mile arc along the coast watched from hills or rooftops as the play of guns and searchlights provided the first real drama of the war for citizens of the mainland. The dawn, which ended the shooting and the fantasy, also proved that the only damage which resulted to the city was such as had been caused by the excitement (there was at least one death from heart failure), by traffic accidents in the blacked-out streets, or by shell fragments from the artillery barrage.
Attempts to arrive at an explanation of the incident quickly became as involved and mysterious as the “battle” itself. The Navy immediately insisted that there was no evidence of the presence of enemy planes, and Secretary [of the Navy, Frank] Knox announced at a press conference on 25 February that the raid was just a false alarm. At the same conference he admitted that attacks were always possible and indicated that vital industries located along the coast ought to be moved inland. The Army had a hard time making up its mind on the cause of the alert. A report to Washington, made by the Western Defense Command shortly after the raid had ended, indicated that the credibility of reports of an attack had begun to be shaken before the blackout was lifted. This message predicted that developments would prove “that most previous reports had been greatly exaggerated.” The Fourth Air Force had indicated its belief that there were no planes over Los Angeles. But the Army did not publish these initial conclusions. Instead, it waited a day, until after a thorough examination of witnesses had been finished. On the basis of these hearings, local commanders altered their verdict and indicated a belief that from one to five unidentified airplanes had been over Los Angeles. Secretary Stimson announced this conclusion as the War Department version of the incident, and he advanced two theories to account for the mysterious craft: either they were commercial planes operated by an enemy from secret fields in California or Mexico, or they were light planes launched from Japanese submarines. In either case, the enemy’s purpose must have been to locate anti-aircraft defenses in the area or to deliver a blow at civilian morale.
The divergence of views between the War and Navy departments, and the unsatisfying conjectures advanced by the Army to explain the affair, touched off a vigorous public discussion. The Los Angeles Times, in a first-page editorial on 26 February, announced that “the considerable public excitement and confusion” caused by the alert, as well as its “spectacular official accompaniments, ” demanded a careful explanation. Fears were expressed lest a few phony raids undermine the confidence of civilian volunteers in the aircraft warning service. In Congress, Representative Leland Ford wanted to know whether the incident was “a practice raid, or a raid to throw a scare into 2,000,000 people, or a mistaken identity raid, or a raid to take away Southern California’s war industries.” Wendell Willkie, speaking in Los Angeles on 26 February, assured Californians on the basis of his experiences in England that when a real air raid began “you won’t have to argue about it—you’ll just know.” He conceded that military authorities had been correct in calling a precautionary alert but deplored the lack of agreement between the Army and Navy. A strong editorial in the Washington Post on 27 February called the handling of the Los Angeles episode a “recipe for jitters,” and censured the military authorities for what it called “stubborn silence” in the face of widespread uncertainty. The editorial suggested that the Army’s theory that commercial planes might have caused the alert “explains everything except where the planes came from, whither they were going, and why no American planes were sent in pursuit of them.” The New York Times on 28 February expressed a belief that the more the incident was studied, the more incredible it became: “If the batteries were firing on nothing at all, as Secretary Knox implies, it is a sign of expensive incompetence and jitters. If the batteries were firing on real planes, some of them as low as 9,000 feet, as Secretary Stimson declares, why were they completely ineffective? Why did no American planes go up to engage them, or even to identify them?... What would have happened if this had been a real air raid?” These questions were appropriate, but for the War Department to have answered them in full frankness would have involved an even more complete revelation of the weakness of our air defenses.
At the end of the war, the Japanese stated that they did not send planes over the area at the time of this alert, although submarine-launched aircraft were subsequently used over Seattle. A careful study of the evidence suggests that meteorological balloons—known to have been released over Los Angeles —may well have caused the initial alarm. This theory is supported by the fact that anti-aircraft artillery units were officially criticized for having wasted ammunition on targets which moved too slowly to have been airplanes. After the firing started, careful observation was difficult because of drifting smoke from shell bursts. The acting commander of the anti-aircraft artillery brigade in the area testified that he had first been convinced that he had seen fifteen planes in the air, but had quickly decided that he was seeing smoke. Competent correspondents like Ernie Pyle and Bill Henry witnessed the shooting and wrote that they were never able to make out an airplane. It is hard to see, in any event, what enemy purpose would have been served by an attack in which no bombs were dropped, unless perhaps, as Mr. Stimson suggested, the purpose had been reconnaissance.
NOTE: there is a lot of evidence that this was not a weather balloon though it's almost impossible to make an actual determination...even with the original footage. I have been told be residents of Southern California and the West Coast during this period that there was a heightened sense of wariness after this incident occurred adding to the terror already present after the Pearl Harbor attack as well as constant fears of an invasion. I'd be interested in your comments...Lon
The Los Angeles Times - Archives
WORLD WAR II UFO SCARE - Paul T. Collins - Fate Magazine - July, 1987
Glendale News Press
United Press International - Archives
"The Army Air Forces in World War II" - prepared under the editorship of Wesley Frank Craven, James Lea Cate. v.1, pp. 277-286, Washington, D.C.: Office of Air Force History
'Phantoms and Monsters'