Just the Facts?: Sunken German Submarine Found -- Mystery Force in Yonkers -- Russian Girl Raised by Cows
Sunken German submarine is found off Nantucket
In April 1944, a German submarine prowling the waters off Nantucket torpedoed an American tanker caught straggling behind its convoy. The U-boat took cover beneath the sinking ship to avoid detection, but the flagship USS Joyce closed in and delivered a punishing depth charge attack that forced the damaged vessel to the surface.
Under fierce attack, U-550 sank stern first. There it lay, its final resting place an enduring mystery for nearly 70 years.
But earlier this week, after years of research and days of painstaking searches of the ocean floor, a crew discovered the elusive craft about 70 miles south of Nantucket. Crew members said the submarine was among the last undiscovered German warships along the Eastern Seaboard, where it once attacked merchant ships and forced blackouts in coastal cities.
“They’ve looked for it for over 20 years,” said Joe Mazraani, a shipwreck diver from New Jersey. “It’s another World War II mystery solved.”
The seven-person crew announced the finding Friday and said they would return to document the wreck site.
Over two voyages, the crew searched 100 square miles of ocean, using sonar to survey the ocean depths. Traveling at 5 knots, the ship scanned the vast expanse for signs of the sunken vessel, a tedious process crew members likened to “mowing the lawn.”
Just when it looked as if the search would end in vain, the downed ship came into view. A second scan confirmed the finding, setting off a wild celebration at sea.
“It was jubilation,” Mazraani said. “We were jumping up and down, giving each other high-fives. It was awesome.”
Mazraani dove down to confirm the discovery with pictures. Sonar images provided by the crew show the 250-foot submarine sitting upright and tilted to the starboard side. The images and the general location match that of the sunken German ship.
“She’s totally intact, amazingly,” said Garry Kozak, a specialist in undersea searches who works for a Wareham firm that designs sonar imaging systems.
With only a general idea of where the submarine went down that April day, the crew had to sweep a vast area, making the eventual discovery that much more satisfying.
“The gods were with us,” Kosak said. “It’s fantastic when it pops up on the screen and you know you’ve solved the mystery.”
The crew would not divulge the exact location of the wreck or the depths involved, so that others would not disturb the site. But they said the wreck can be reached by expert divers.
Embarking from the tip of Long Island, the crew traveled for half a day before beginning their search. They had studied naval records in search of clues to the submarine’s whereabouts, but could only narrow the location so much. That, coupled with unpredictable weather conditions, posed a steep challenge.
“The area is very large because of the uncertainty,” Kosak said. “And clearly just getting there is an ordeal.”
Because the submarine had eluded discovery for so long, crew members were beginning to doubt it could be found. As the hours passed, hope dwindled.
“It was really nerve-racking,” Mazraani said. “We were down to our last hour.”
The group began searching the area last summer after several years of planning and research.
After the submarine was forced to surface, the Germans began firing their deck guns, according to a Coast Guard history. Three US ships returned fire and one rammed into it. There were 44 casualties and 12 survivors.
The prisoners of war, and the survivors of the American tanker, were taken to Great Britain.
The crew plans to notify families of those involved in the battle, including the German casualties.
“It’s their final resting place,” Mazraani said. “There’s a certain reverence to it.” - bostonglobe
The Official U-boat Commander's Handbook - The Illustrated Edition
Iron Coffins: A Personal Account Of The German U-boat Battles Of World War II
Hitler's U-Boat War: The Hunters, 1939-1942 (Modern Library War)
UFOs believable to many despite unidentified proof
A metallic flying aircraft with a disk-shaped body, surrounded by an eerie glowing light moves so quickly across the night sky that if you blink, you just might miss it. Unidentified flying objects have played an iconic part in popular culture since the 1950s, especially in science fiction, and have become synonymous with the idea of extraterrestrial life.
According to a 2012 National Geographic survey, about 36 percent of Americans believe that UFOs are real and 11 percent claim to have seen one themselves. If one hasn’t seen a UFO, 20 percent of Americans know someone who has allegedly seen one in their lifetime.
One of the earliest and most notable works to include this idea is The War of the Worlds, written by H.G. Wells in 1898. Its later 1938 radio broadcast by Orson Welles led to a widespread panic by listeners, some who truly believed that the events were real and that Earth was being invaded by aliens. Years later, some are still skeptical about whether or not aliens exist, while others believe it wholeheartedly.
The term “flying saucer” was first coined in the late 1940s when a chain of nine UFOs was seen flying across the sky by a pilot named Kenneth Arnold. Reaching nationwide coverage, this became the first post-war UFO sighting in the United States, leading to numerous more within the ensuing weeks.
Joshua Colwell, a professor at UCF’s physics department, has studied planetary sciences and astronomy for years. He finds the topic fascinating but says there is a big difference between the existence of UFOs and extraterrestrial life.
“I believe that [it’s] very likely that there is life elsewhere in the universe,” he said. “However, I do not believe that there is any evidence to support a claim that any of that life has ever come to this planet.”
Without having any direct evidence to support the claim that there have been signals sent from alien intelligence or that other life forms exist, it is difficult to say for sure if people from Earth are alone or not. One of the simplest reasons that Colwell believes that society accepts the idea of life elsewhere is because of the extent of life here on Earth.
“The life on our planet seems to be remarkably robust and exists in virtually every habitat that there is on the planet,” Colwell said. “So even in the most extreme conditions, on our own planet, we find some form of life. It ranges from the most dry and cold regions of the Antarctic to the deep sea, the bottom of the ocean.”
Lorelei Metcalf, a 2010 UCF alumna, has never seen a UFO but she doesn’t necessarily believe that people on Earth are alone.
“I believe they could exist; there could be [life on other planets],” she said. “I guess I’m open to the possibility of it because, I mean, humans exist, so there are strange things that could happen, absolutely. I’m sure it’s not anywhere nearby in our galaxy or anything. But I don’t know what’s out beyond there, so I’m open to it.”
Although UFOs are exciting to spot, a majority of the time these so-called alien spacecrafts can be mistaken for not-so-exceptional, everyday things. According to LifesLittleMysteries.com, airplanes, missile tests and strange cloud formations have been confused with flying saucers, but the most famous and most contemplated of them all are military experiments, more specifically, the Roswell UFO incident.
Colwell has not seen any evidence to support those claims and does not believe that there was any alien involvement in the incident. He said that the average person associates the title of UFO with extraterrestrial beings, not an object that is typically seen on Earth. Although the literal meaning is an unidentified flying object, society will sometimes allow their minds to believe in the unbelievable, he says.
Angie Berry, a UCF accounting junior, believes that there is something out there, but she’s not ready to jump to conclusions just yet. While she says that it is a big possibility that there are other life forms in the universe, she also knows that they are going to be different from what is presented in movies.
“I think they’re going to look a lot like us,” Berry said. “I don’t think they’re going to look like what they portray on TV, like they’re going to look weird and stuff like that.”
The UFO debate is still present today, with both sides eager to prove the other wrong, but without the proper evidence to support any claims, the uncertainty still lingers. If there is one thing that we can agree on, it is the fact that our imagination is our only limit, Colwell said.
This leads to one simple question: Are we really alone in the universe? - centralfloridafuture
UFOs: The Secret History
Secret Access: Secret Access UFOs On the Record
Unsolved Mysteries: UFOs
Mystery Force Blocks Remote Car Keys In Yonkers
A mystery force field that blocks wireless car keys from working has Yonkers Avenue business owners, residents and even the police commissioner stumped.
Yonkers Police Commissioner Charles Gardner visited the area near Yonkers and Page avenues on Tuesday after reports surfaced that drivers were unable to unlock or start cars with their wireless key fobs because of some kind of radio interference. Gardner left as baffled as anyone else, but ordered the department to begin an investigation and notify the FCC and utility companies, police said.
Drivers were left wondering what renders their keyless remotes useless on the block. Many have been left stranded, but when their cars were pushed or towed a few blocks away from the mystery zone, the remotes suddenly work again. The zone stretches approximately from Yonkers Avenue and Orient Street to just past the intersection of Yonkers and Page avenues.
Jane Holden became the latest victim of the dead zone Tuesday afternoon when she tried to lock her doors with the remote. Holden, who lives on the opposite side of the city, pushed the remote repeatedly but to no avail.
“It’s frustrating,” Holden said. “I was about to go buy a new battery. I’ve never had this problem before.”
Eric Marden, manager at Marden Hardware, said that is the common reaction from drivers. The store sold dozens of batteries for the remotes in the past six months before employees suspected something was going on. Now, the hardware store refuses to sell the batteries to stranded motorists.
“We could have sold hundreds more,” Marden said. “We had to tell people every day ‘you don’t need a new battery.’”
Marden said the hardware store suspected the problem was caused by interference from a utility pole in front of the store. But a radio frequency expert hired by the owner of the utility pole determined the source was coming from across the street.
Vic Joseph, a clerk at Yonkers Mini Mart and Deli, said the problem needs to be fixed soon because the deli has lost some customers who had to have their cars towed away.
“It’s a bother because some people say they will not come back to the store,” he said. “It’s not good to have this.”
Though uncommon, these events are not unheard of. In 2004, The Washington Post reported similar problems in Waldorf, Md., after residents were left by the roadside when their remote starters wouldn’t work. That same year, residents in Las Vegas, Nev., reported similar problems that were later determined to be caused by a faulty radio signal repeater, according to the Las Vegas Sun.
Three years earlier, thousands of drivers in Bremerton, Wash., were left without access to their cars, according to multiple reports.
In the past, however, faulty keyless remotes may have been simply an annoyance, as drivers used their standard keys to unlock the doors and start the engine. But today, more and more cars depend on the keyless starts.
An Edmunds report shows the number of car models offering keyless start has grown from 40 in 2006 to 163 last year, more than half of all new cars and trucks sold in the United States, the site reports.
Those car owners might want to think twice about driving to Yonkers, though. - dailyvoice
Girl Raised by Cows Found in Urals
Social workers in Russia's Urals have taken into their care a five-year-old girl who spent most of her life in a cowshed and had cigarette butts for toys, media said on Thursday.
The girl’s mother and stepfather, both farmers in Perm region, did not take her to kindergarten and forced her to stay with the farm animals to keep her off their hands, Uralinform.ru said.
The girl was also frequently locked in a cupboard when she got in the way of her alcoholic parents, Moskovsky Komsomolets said. The father also frequently beat her up, the report said.
The girl cannot speak or eat with knife or fork, Uralinform.ru said. Instead, she grunts and drinks milk straight from the pot.
A case was opened into the incident. The girl was sent to a rehabilitation center, but may never fully recover after years of neglect, Moskovsky Komsomolets said.
The girl is not the only neglected child in the area: last winter, social services took away from local parents a seven-month-old infant who had to live in an unheated house on a diet of chips and pickles he would steal from the parents’ table. - rian
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