There is no case file of any consequence on the alleged crash of a UFO at Roswell, New Mexico in 1947, amongst the Air Force's Project Blue Book case collection. There should be but there isn't. Why? Perhaps the Air Force did not consider the incident important enough to document. This is probably the least likely explanation since the report was very much publicized in most important newspapers throughout the United States. If the story were real but highly classified, then this would explain the absence of a detailed file but not of a general information file. Again the incident was too well known to ignore. Though we can only speculate, the most likely reason is that the file was "borrowed" by a scientist doing research for the Air Force, or a souvenir hunter from the old Project Sign days, and never returned. Former Project Blue Book head, Captain Edward Ruppert, in his REPORT on UFO's (Doubleday, 1956, page 99) said that this was in fact what happened to "lots of reports".
The case for the Roswell object being a spacecraft seems to begin where what we know about the news events as reported in 1947 ends. An object came down, was discovered, was reported in the news, then quickly disappeared into history. It's entirely conceivable that the government would have worked under the assumption that the Roswell object was a strange aerial vehicle and treat it as a national security matter until analysis determined what the debris was. A great deal of attention, and uncertainty, circulated about the new flying saucer phenomena during the first week of July 1947. One did not have a UFO history to fall back upon as a guide on how to deal with such a situation.
It is for this reason that I choose not to interpret the secrecy itself as proof that an alien ship crashed. With the absence of official documents, debris, or bodies of aliens, one is left with verbal testimony only; a bevy of witnesses claiming, more often indirectly than not, that the object was indeed a flying saucer. It has been said that with testimony by hundreds of persons, such as has been put forth by Schmitt and Randle, the case for UFO's as extraordinary vehicles from somewhere other than the Earth could quickly be presented and won in a court of law; that somehow this would be the final arbiter of the UFO issue.
There is little doubt in my mind that the case for a flying saucer at Roswell could possibly be won in court. Mark my words on this carefully. It could be won , not proven.
While the legal system represents the pinnacle of our understanding of man's law in society, it is vastly different from interpreting issues relating to scientific standards, or our understanding of natural law. Legal standards frequently fall far short of the exacting demands by which we comprehend nature. Innocent people can be sent to jail while guilty ones are set free in a system that can be manipulated. Judgement of truth can be swayed by displays of style and charisma; by sheer force of personality rather than by hard fact. The very symbol of justice is BLIND. Sometimes the lawyer who puts on the best show in a clever distortion of facts can succeed. If the opposing viewpoint is not alert, outrages can be the norm. The Supreme Court, for example, once decided that slavery was lawful and right in the Dred Scott decision.
Assessments as to whether UFO crashes are fact or not cannot be made legally without enormous doubt, considering the absence of physical evidence. we are left with the standards of scientific study, more stringent and demanding that they are, to settle this matter. And until physical evidence does become available, scientific study cannot even be applied. So we are saddled with a fascinating tale and little more, unless one chooses to "believe" based upon one's personal preference, a dangerous way to present "facts" to a skeptical public.
End of part 1
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